The Cure for Being Conceited and Pride
‘Ujb: To see one self as being good.
Kibr: To think highly of one self and lowly of others and to reject the truth.
If a person does not think of one self as higher than others and does not consider others to be lower than one self and accepts the truth then despite having wealth, kingdom and nice clothes this person will not be afflicted with pride and conceit. As it is mentioned in the book called “Malfuzaat Kamaalaat-e-Ashrafiya” that Hazrat Thanwi has said, “When a person thinks highly of oneself then that person is considered lowly in the sight of Allah Ta’ala and when a person thinks low of oneself then he becomes elevated in the sight of Allah Ta’ala. Being conceited and proud is a disease of unintelligent foolish people. At the time of bidding farewell to the bride a group of her friends gathered and congratulated her for looking beautiful with her nice clothes and jewelry on, that bride then started to cry and she said I don’t know if this beauty you speak of will be accepted in the sight of my husband or not, the real decision of whether I am pretty or beautiful or not is in the hands of my husband and it is not for you to decide. I have to live with him for the rest of my life; hence, what he says goes. A person would be more foolish than even this bride, who before the decision of his Master in this life considers oneself to be good and has become stupid due to the praises of a few people when in reality, the real decision will be made on the Day of Judgment. To think highly of oneself prior to the Day of Judgment will be extremely unintelligent and foolish.
The example of one who thinks highly of them self because of the praises of others is like that of a person who owns a restless horse and does not let owner ride it and finally after losing all hope the owner takes the horse to an auction with the intention of selling it. The auctioneer then started to praise the horse and speak highly of it and mention qualities that in reality did not exist within the horse so that it could be sold at a maximum price. The owner out of foolishness then said to the auctioneer that since my horse is so good I’ve decided to not sell it. This foolish owner has forgotten the experience of a lifetime of all the restlessness and bad manners of the horse. Similarly, that person who is familiar with the evils and sins of one self, if someone decides to praise this person then based off that praise to consider one to be good is the height of stupidity.
Being conceited and having pride deprives a person from the mercy of Allah Ta’ala. One should consider every single quality one has whether it be knowledge, wealth, beauty or health all to be a gift from Allah Ta’ala and to think of these things as something that a person developed on their own is similar to a lover who takes a mirror to his beloved and instead of looking at his beloved looks at himself in the mirror, it’s because of this behavior the beloved would then push away and kick this type of lover out. Being conceited and having pride is such an illness that destroys ones worldly life and the hereafter. It is mentioned in a hadith narrated by Imam Bayhaqi, “Whoever lowers oneself for the sake of Allah Ta’ala, Allah will elevate and honor that person, so this person will become lowly in ones’ own sight, but will be honorable in the sight of people and that person who thinks highly of oneself, Allah Ta’ala degrades that person and that person becomes degraded in the sight of people as well to such an extent that people will consider this person to be worse than a pig or a dog.