بسم الله و الحمد لله والصلاة والسلام على رسول الله
We seem to be obsessed.
The approval of others fills us with glee and pride.
Admiration makes us feel like our lives have purpose.
Criticism cuts our heart and makes us ask ourselves "What am I doing wrong?"
Why do we chain ourselves to the opinions of others? Why do we enslave ourselves to other human beings when Allah has created us free? Why do we allow our thoughts to be consumed to the point of madness by the Dunya and it's minuscule inhabitants, when they bring us benefit in nothing?
We and forget all about our Lord. We forget the moments of seclusion, the moments of serenity when the only thought in our minds is worshiping Allah.
|And what is more beautiful in this world than sitting alone|
with your Lord and forgetting all about this world?
When we are alone with thoughts only on Allah, we forget about this world so easily.
Why do you care? Why do you care so much, about what others think about you, about how you dress, how you look, how many people liked your picture on facebook?
Ask yourself this: If you had the approval and praise of everyone in the world: What have you gained?
And if you have lost the approval of Allah, what have you lost? You have lost the only thing that really matters.
In some cases we may find ourselves willing to sacrifice our standards, not to please the whole world; but just one person. We put that person so high that we start to place pleasing them over pleasing Allah, and even when we are pleasing Allah, we never know who are intentions are really for.
Does is really matter if everyone likes you if you don't like yourself? At the end of the day we will be left only with our own conscious to fill us with guilt and our limbs to testify to our actions; if we used our lives to please those around us or if we used our lives to worship Allah and gain His approval.
Of course, making others happy can be a form of pleasing Allah as well, but not when it becomes detrimental to yourself. And not when it doesn't come with the sincere intention to please Allah first above everyone else.
If you place your hopes your happiness, your self confidence on others, you will only be happy for as long as those compliments, approval and praise are flowing. And eventually the stream will dry up-nothing is constant. No matter how much someone loves you their affection will never be constant, it will never be enough to content you- Because another human being was never meant to carry your happiness on their shoulders, when you put all your weight on a twig and it breaks, is it the twigs fault or is it your fault for holding onto it in the first place? If we don't learn to get that happiness from the source it was meant to come from: From Allah, it will always be fleeting, always be temporary. Lao Tzo says "Care about people's approval and you will be their prisoner."
Mother Theresa : "If you are humble nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know who you are."
A man came to the Prophet صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ and said: “O Messenger of God, direct me to an act, which if I do, God will love me and people will love me.” He said: “Detach yourself from the world, and God will love you. Detach yourself from what is with the people, and the people will love you.” [Ibn Majah]
عَنْ سَهْلِ بْنِ سَعْدٍ السَّاعِدِيِّ قَالَ أَتَى النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ رَجُلٌ فَقَالَ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ دُلَّنِي عَلَى عَمَلٍ إِذَا أَنَا عَمِلْتُهُ أَحَبَّنِي اللَّهُ وَأَحَبَّنِي النَّاسُ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ازْهَدْ فِي الدُّنْيَا يُحِبَّكَ اللَّهُ وَازْهَدْ فِيمَا فِي أَيْدِي النَّاسِ يُحِبُّوكَ
There is nothing more exhausting to the soul than constantly chasing the approval of others.
Does it matter if everyone is pleased with you if Allah is not pleased with you?
The main reason we chase people is because the main thing most of us want is simple: we all want love.
"But at the heart of what makes us run after the creation, is simply love. The need to give and receive love. This need has been put in us by the Creator. And every need created by God, has been created for a purpose. The need to give and receive love was created as a driver. A driver that pushes us back to God. You see, we began with God, and God wants us to come back to Him in this life—even before we come back to Him in the next. So He puts inside us, drivers intended to bring us back. Intended to bring us back Home." -Yasmin Mogahed
يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ ضُرِبَ مَثَلٌ فَاسْتَمِعُوا لَهُ ۚ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ تَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ لَنْ يَخْلُقُوا ذُبَابًا وَلَوِ اجْتَمَعُوا لَهُ ۖ وَإِنْ يَسْلُبْهُمُ الذُّبَابُ شَيْئًا لَا يَسْتَنْقِذُوهُ مِنْهُ ۚ ضَعُفَ الطَّالِبُ وَالْمَطْلُوبُ
O mankind! Here is an example for your understanding, so listen to it carefully. Those beings whom you call besides Allah, cannot create a single fly, even if they all combined their forces, rather, if a fly snatches away anything from them they cannot even get it back; how feebleminded are the suppliants and how powerless are those whom they supplicate
The problem lies when we no longer experience ourselves as dependent on Allah, we become dependent upon each other for our very feeling of existence. We have forgotten our dependency upon Allah. We have forgotten that no matter how well people think of us, if we don’t have the approval of God, our time has been wasted.
Let's ask ourselves from now on in regard to our actions: Am I doing this to please Allah or am I doing this to please human beings? Am I using my energy and efforts to please others in actions I know are displeasing to Allah?
Try to refocus all the energy we put into this world and thinking about others, and instead replace that energy towards what will benefit us in this life and in the afterlife : Pleasing Allah and worshiping Him in the best way.
Detach your thoughts from this world and practice solitude: remove everything from your mind so that it is only you and Allah alone. One of the seven people who are promised shade on the Day of Judgement is "the one who remembers Allah in solitude so that his eyes overflow with tears."
Remember that at the end of the day, the people you wish to please are nothing more than servants of Allah. And who would distress themselves pleasing servants when they have to please the King?
اللهم لا تجعل الدنيا اكبر همنا
All correct and beneficial knowledge is from the mercy and guidance of Allah, and all incorrect information is an unintentional error only from myself. And Allah knows best. والله أعلمُ بالـصـواب