Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Vile Character Of Envy

The Vile Character Of Envy
Sheikh Abu Bakar Jabir Al-Jaza’iry

In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful;
All the praise and Thanks are due to Allāh, the Lord of the al-ā’lamīn. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam, is His Messenger.

Envy is not is not a character of a righteous person. It is not part of the Muslim characteristic and it will not befit as a Muslim. A Muslim should have a love of good for others and behaves unselfishly. Envy is a contradiction to the love of good for others and selflessness. A Muslim does not condone envy but detest the one who practices it. One must acknowledged the distribution of favors by Allāh Subhānahu Wa Ta’ala unto His creatures.

Allāh the Exalted and Glorious says:

"Is it they who would portion out the Mercy of your Lord? It is We, Who portion out between them their livelihood in this world. And We raised some of them above others in ranks, so that some may employ others in their work." (Az-Zukhruf, 43:32)

There are two types of envy, the first is when one person hopes that another person will lose his blessings, and that they will be acquired by him. These blessings may be in his wealth, his knowledge, his status, his power or otherwise. The second type of envy is when he hopes the person loses his blessings, and he does not desire them for himself.

However, wishing to have the like of what someone else has, or to be like somebody else without any harm coming to their blessings is not a form of envy. Allāh's Messenger (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) said:

"There should be no envy except of two: a man whom Allāh gives wealth enabling him to spend in the truth, and a man to whom Allāh gives wisdom and he judges with it and teaches others." (Al-Bukhari)

The meaning of wisdom in this Hadith is the Noble Qur'an and the Prophetic Sunnah. So it is not allowed for anyone to envy anyone else with true envy.

Allāh the Exalted and Glorious says:

"Or do they envy men for what Allāh has given them of His bounty?" (An-Nisa,’ 4:54)

"Out of envy from themselves." (Al-Baqarah, 2:109)

"From the mischief of the envious one when he practices envy." (Al-Falaq, 113:5)

Allāh has categorically condemned the vile quality of envy and strictly prohibited it. Allāh's Messenger (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) said:
"Do not harbor a grudge against one another, nor envy one another, nor show enmity; and do not show your backs to one another; be a brotherhood of servants of Allāh. It is not lawful for a Muslim to shun his brother beyond three days."

"Beware of envy because envy consumes the virtues just as the fire consumes the firewood." or he said (grass.) (Abu Dawud)

If a Muslim senses envy within himself, he should attempt to remove it to protect himself and he should feel a sense of rejection for it so that it does not motivate him or influence his behavior. For if he was to speak or act according to it then it will ruin him. If he is amazed by something, he says:

Masha Allāh, lā quwwata illā billāh. "What Allāh wills, there is no strength except of Allāh."

Allāh Knows best.
[Exerpted from “Minhaj al Muslim” published by Darussalam; Via Islamic Network]

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