In society, many of us individuals tend to not want to let people walk all over us. If someone does wrong by us whether it be a negative comment or action made towards us, we are quick to react with our dignity otherwise we let people take advantage of us. In western society, this is a common concept that lies within most individuals.
However, through an Islamic lens, it is the actual opposite of thinking that people are taking advantage of us and instead when someone does evil or oppresses us, Islam says to forget our dignity and be of a good personality. This is in fact acting in a pious manner rather than acting with our dignity and lowering ourselves to a level that is the opposite of piety.
Abu Hurayrah narrated from the Messenger of Allah (s) who said: “Charity will never reduce the wealth, and Allah will not grant a slave a sense of pardon except that He will increase him in honour. None will humble himself except that Allah will raise him in status.”
When someone wrongs us, Islam tells us to have an honourable character and act good rather than thinking that people cannot take advantage of us and it actually starting to then turn into prejudiced acts. There will be a constant battle then between love and hate. However, when we act with good mannerisms no matter how someone treats us and with the intention of pleasing Allah, the one who created us and upon where we will all return back to him, there will always be love.
Notice how when we feel the need to take revenge on someone because of the way they may have treated us, deep down our soul is the one that is burning and does not feel clean. This is because acting in a way where we need to retaliate back to the wrong that has been afflicted upon us leaves us with more pain than the wrong that was thrown at us.
Our soul needs to be forgiving no matter what and the heart needs to attach itself to Allah only.
Allah states: “The good deed and the evil deed cannot be equal. Repel the evil with one which is better. (ie, Allah ordered the faithful believers to be patient at the time of anger, and to excuse those who treat them badly), then verily! He between whom and you there was enmity, (will become) as though he was a close friend” (Fussilat: 34).
The holy month of Ramadan and moving beyond it is a perfect time to do good deeds such as improving our character especially when pain has been inflicted upon us. Prophet Muhammad (s) was insulted with the most horrendous comments and physical acts done to him. By viewing the seerah (The Prophet’s (s) life) of Prophet Muhammad (s) we as humans can find a way to rise above every form of evil that we may face in our lives particularly at the hands of those who show us hostility.
So, I leave you with a beautiful Quranic verse to ponder upon: “Warn your nearest kinfolk and lower your wing tenderly over the believers who follow you. If they disobey you, say, ‘I bear no responsibility for your actions.’ Put your trust in the Almighty, the merciful, who sees you when you stand up (for prayer) and sees your movements among the worshippers: He is all Hearing, the All-knowing” (Quran, Ash-Shu’ara: 26).