Being the Finest!
By: Muhammad Rasool Shah.
It was an occasion of teachers’ training when numerous teachers from different schools had gathered to share their experiences and expertise about this noble profession. Teachers with varying personalities, appearances and styles had assembled and the training sessions were going on with maximum productivity. There were also present the teacher trainers who were mostly the Heads of their respective departments, appearing to be comparatively mature and serious. In this gathering, a person immediately caught my attention and of the many. He was the head of one department but he looked very humble and polite. He was very silent and appeared as if a shying child had been brought and put among the teachers who was trying all his best to adjust himself to the environment. He appeared to be lacking the confidence needed to face the people and train them so sheer curiosity forced me to attend one of his seminars. There, I found him to be very much acknowledged and expert in his field and he delivered a very-well prepared seminar to the teachers. It was a coincidence that later on we got acquainted to each other and then came to know a lot about each other. He was a person with wide study and knowledge about different fields of study like morality, ethics, social sciences and psychology and of course the positive and true teachings of Islam (In fact we don’t have any negative teaching but because of the interpretations of some so-called illiterate Islamic experts, a dark image of Islam has been shown to the world which has turned them very sensitive against anything which is related to Islam or religion). He was a great admirer of some moral qualities like politeness, good manners and especially the humility and self-rejection. He had not only read a lot about them but also made all the efforts to bring these in his personality and character. Later on, when I looked at his personality after knowing all these, I myself became an admirer and fan of him and his noble ideas and tried to adopt them practically as well in which I doubt I have not attained much success. In old times, strong and thick-walled fortresses were built around the cities and there were big gates to enter the city so similarly, a person who wants to enter the city of good manners and elevate his personality, needs to go through the gate of humility and self-rejection.This unique quality not only prepares grounds for so many other good qualities but it also stops you from a number of evil ideas or habits. When our Holy Prophet (PBUH) was entering the city of Makkah as the conqueror, it was an occasion that was very dangerous for one’s ego, with a lot to offer to make one feel proud. One of the great nations of the time was defeated and their fate of life and death now relied absolutely on his orders. Holy Prophet (PBUH) was entering the city with more than 30 thousand companions and the enemy was so weak that they were not in position to show any kind of resistance. Similarly, it was the city where everyone had been his enemy and from where he was forced to migrate. In order to avoid this, our Holy Prophet (PBUH) had bent down his head and he was silently busy in praising Allah for all this victory and honor. First of all, he credited this honor to Allah so that he should not feel any kind of pride by taking the credit for himself. Secondly, in the air of pride and anger, he could have fallen victim to vengeance and could have ordered killing of the enemies but his modesty and humility never let him make any wrong decision and thus he humbly entered the city, pardoned every man and woman and treated them in a way that no conqueror had ever treated the defeated enemy.
There come many occasions in one’s life when one gets the chance to feel pride. It may range from wearing a new clothe to becoming a CEO of an organization and so on. In all those occasions, when you feel proud, you simply declare yourself superior to others and take the others less than you. This is the feeling that makes you think above the ground realities, without realizing the others’ feelings and conditions. Later on, when this habit becomes the permanent part of your personality, you absolutely alienate yourself from the people around you (mentally, if not physically) and start living in the world of your own. This thinking approach which keeps you at a distance from the people around you leaves behind nothing for you. When you show humility, people take you as someone who is kind and open and thus more and more people get into contact with you and in return both the parties get benefitted from each other. That’s why it is said that the rivers pour their water into the sea as the level of sea is always below them.
In every society, there are many who are lucky enough to have got this unique trait of humility in their personalities from nature. Later on, if they are in habit of book reading or getting some kind of inspiration from others, this trait is refined with deliberate efforts. But unfortunately, in our society, such a person is considered to be coward, less confident or non-social. When such remarks are continually repeated to him, he starts believing in these and gradually loses his confidence on this emerald part of his personality. This has especially been observed by the teachers in the classroom where polite and nice-behaving students slowly and gradually lose their trust on themselves and conduct when they see that active, disturbing and rather intimidating students are given more time and attention, they think of resorting to be like them. Teachers do so as they follow a rule of disciplining that disturbing students need to be kept under constant check. But important factor to understand here is that, if you believe in the strength of your character, you need to believe and continue following it, no matter what others think of it or say about it.
People at the height of their character are so humble and polite that they are considered to be having some kind of psychological problem and thus they appear to be a misfit in the society. In majority of educated and literate societies where people know the importance of respecting others privacy, such people live a very comfortable life. But in our society, where people are in habit of doing unnecessary interference in others issues, such a person appears to be a misfit in the society and different kinds of remarks circulate about him.
If a person doesn’t harm anyone and has the habit of remaining busy in his own matters without disturbing others, he should be left on his own. This unique quality of such people needs to be differentiated, understood and appreciated!
Muhammad Rasool Shah is a writer of the Afghanistan Express Daily.