Commentary ~ The emotional bank balance

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

We dictate how others think of us. If a person were to see you in the market and frown at you, then see you at the grocer’s and frown at you, and then you bump into him at a wedding party and see him frowning at you, you would form a picture of him in your mind. If you were to see him again, or even hear of him again, his frowning face would instantly come mind. Isn’t that true?

If a person meets you with a smile, then he meets you elsewhere with a smile, and so on, there will be a positive smiling picture of him imprinted in your mind.

This is concerning someone with whom you have no relationship and only meet with every now and then. But as for those whom we meet all the time, like a wife, children, work colleagues and neighbours, then we don’t always deal with them in the same manner. Yes, they will see us laughing and joking, but no doubt they will also see us sometimes angry, frowning, argumentative or even insulting because we are, after all, human beings.

Consequently, their love for us is governed by our good or bad conduct towards them. If you wish, you can say that their love for us is in proportion to the emotional credit that we may have in our accounts with them. How so?

When you show good conduct towards a person, you are in reality depositing fond memories about yourself in his memory register. In other words, it is as if he has opened up an account for you in his heart where he keeps safe his love and respect for you. Thereafter, your bank balance either increases or decreases. Hence, each time you meet him with a smile, your emotional bank balance increases. Each time you give him a gift, it also increases. Every act of courtesy increases it further. Similarly, each time you offend, insult or curse a person, you make a withdrawal from that emotional bank balance.

Similarly, if you have a huge balance with a person and one day end up angering him, you withdraw only a small percentage from your emotional bank balance due to the huge original balance.

If a beloved comes with one vice,

His virtues come to the rescue with a thousand intercessors

However, if you don’t have an emotional bank balance with a person to begin with and then begin to withdraw, then your account with him will be in deficit. Subsequently, he may develop a dislike for you since you continue to withdraw but never deposit.

You may have heard the story about a wife who was divorced by her husband. When asked about the reason for the divorce, she said, “It was a trivial reason. He wanted me to go with him to see his sister and I refused. He became angry and began insulting and cursing me, and then eventually divorced me!”

If you contemplate a little why she got divorced, you would discover that the reason was not as trivial as she claimed. Rather, the incident was the last straw that broke the camel’s back!

It is said that there was once a man who had a strong camel. One day he decided to travel, so he placed all his belongings on the camel’s back and tied it up. The poor camel tried to withstand the pressure as he managed to place on its back the load of four camels. The camel began to waver as the people shouted at the man saying, “Enough!” But the man didn’t listen. He finally took a belt made out of straw and placed it on the camel, saying, “This is very light, and this is the last thing I will place on it.” As soon as he placed the belt on it, the camel fell to the ground. Thus, his story became an idiom and it was said, “The last straw which broke the camel’s back!”

If you think about it, you will realise that the belt was quite innocent, for it was not the belt that broke the camel’s back. Rather, the back was broken due to the heavy overall load that was placed on it, which it tried to withstand with patience until it could stand it no longer. The miniscule weight of the belt then finally broke its back.

The same goes for the woman who was divorced by her husband (*Note: the same applies to a husband towards his wife). I can say for certain that the reason was not just the fact that she refused to visit his sister. Rather, it was a number of things including refusing to fulfill his requests and his wishes, the lack of love between the two, her arrogance and the lack of respect she had for his views. She continued to withdraw from her emotional bank account without depositing anything. She continued to hurt him without healing his wounds. He continued to bear her with patience, until this incident happened which broke the camel’s back.

If she were to have contributed to her emotional bank account on a regular basis by meeting him nicely, spoiling him a little, making herself beloved to him, joking and being light-hearted with him, taking care of his food and clothes and respecting his views, she would have had a huge emotional bank balance. She would have been a millionaire in his heart. Consequently, it would not have mattered much if her emotional bank balance decreased slightly because her wrong actions would have disappeared in the sea of her virtues.

You can say the same about a troublemaking student who has made one mistake due to which his teacher become very angry and perhaps punish him, or threw him out of the classroom. Then the student may complain, “Such-and-such a colleague of mine does things much worse than me, yet he isn’t punished! As for me, I didn’t do anything, except that I made a joke without permission.” He doesn’t realise that the joke was the last straw which broke the camel’s back. He had always hurt his teacher without healing his wounds. The same can be said about colleagues or neighbours who argue amongst each other.

Hence, we are always in need of depositing into the emotional bank balance that lies in people’s hearts. The husband should look for opportunities to deposit into his wife’s heart and continue to increase his points. The wife should do the same. The son should likewise deposit some love in his mother and father’s heart, as should the teacher with his students and a person with his brother. In fact, even the manager should do the same with those who work under him.

In short…
If a beloved comes with one vice,

His virtues come to the rescue with a thousand intercessors

Enjoy your life
Dr. Muhammad ‘Abd Al-Rahaman Al-Arifi
Translated by: Saleem Beg
Edited By: Nasim Chowdhury
Published By: Darussalam
P510

Hadith ~ Your weak ones

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Mus’ab bin Sa’d bin Abu Waqqas (MAPH) reported: Sa’d considered himself better than his inferiors, so the Prophet (SAWS) said to him: “You are given help and provision because of your weak ones”. (Al-Bukhari)

Abu-Darda (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (SAWS) said: “Seek among your weak ones, for you are given provision and help only because of the weak amongst you.” (Abu Dawud).

Commentary: These Hadiths exhorts the resourceful people not to look down upon the poor and resourceless people of the society and not to consider themselves superior to others. They should learn to respect the weak and co-operate with them because may be Almighty, Allah, is providing them because of the poor.

SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection
MAPH: May Allah be pleased with him

Riyaadiss-Saliheen (The Meadows of the Righteous)
By Imam An Nawawi
Hadith 1: Chapter 33, Page 93, No 271
Hadith 2: Chapter 33, Page 94, No 272

Ayaat 55-60 ~ Adh-Dhariyat (The Winds that Scatter)

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

55. And remind for verily, the reminding profits the believers.

56. And I (Allâh) created not the jinns and humans except they should worship Me (Alone).

57. I seek not any provision from them nor do I ask that they should feed Me.

58. Verily, Allâh is the All-Provider, Owner of Power, the Most Strong.

59. And verily, for those who do wrong, there is a portion of torment like to the evil portion of torment (which came for) their likes (of old), so let them not ask Me to hasten on!

60. Then, woe to those who disbelieve (in Allâh and His Oneness Islâmic Monotheism) from (that) their Day which they have been promised (for their punishment).

Sura 51. Adh-Dhariyat (The Winds that Scatter)

Hadith ~ You will not enter Jannah until you believe

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection) said: “By Him in Whose Hand my soul is! You will not enter Jannah until you believe, and you shall not believe until you love one another. May I inform you of something, if you do, you love each other. Promote greeting amongst you (by saying As-salamu ‘alaikum to one another)”. (Muslim)

Commentary: In this Hadith, Islam has been regarded as the medium of mutual love. This is the reason Muslims have been enjoined to greet each other regardless of acquaintance. It does not, however, mean that a Muslim will be a true believer or entitled to Jannah, by mere greeting. What it really means is that his Faith will become meaningful only when it is supported by actions. Greeting is an Islamic custom and a practical form and demonstration of it. The combination of Faith and its practice will take a Muslim to Jannah.

Riyaadiss-Saliheen (The Meadows of the Righteous)
By Imam An Nawawi
Chapter 46, Page 126, No 378

Ayaat 9-11 ~ Al-Jumu’ah (Friday)

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Listen to Recitation

9. O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the Salât (prayer) on the day of Friday (Jumu’ah prayer), come to the remembrance of Allâh [Jumu’ah religious talk (Khutbah) and Salât (prayer)] and leave off business (and every other thing), that is better for you if you did but know!

10. Then when the (Jumu’ah) Salât (prayer) is finished, you may disperse through the land, and seek the Bounty of Allâh (by working, etc.), and remember Allâh much, that you may be successful.

11. And when they see some merchandise or some amusement [beating of Tambur (drum) etc.] they disperse headlong to it, and leave you (Muhammad ) standing [while delivering Jumu’ah’s religious talk (Khutbah)]. Say “That which Allâh has is better than any amusement or merchandise! And Allâh is the Best of providers.”

Sura 62. Al-Jumu’ah (Friday)

Commentary ~ Nothing is more Precious

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Nothing, it has been said, is more precious than intelligence used in the service of a good and firm management that itself is nourished by the reverential fear of Allah (Taqwa). There is no good neighborliness without evenness of temper; it is based upon the good education that the behavior of each will be judged; without Divine assistance, there is no success to be expected. Similarly, trade with others only profits where, based on virtue, it aspires for sole compensation the Supreme Reward. There is no better Piety than adherence to the limits set by Islam, there is no better Science than that of reflection; there is no better devotion than fulfilling the obligations of Divine institution; there is no better demonstration of Faith than that which is done in discretion; there is no better merit than humility and no nobility except that which comes with Knowledge. Fair share must be made for what the body feels with, always in mind, the idea of the precariousness of things and of Death.