My respected Shaykh, Hadhrat Maulana Adam Sahib, holds regular gatherings for students and graduates of the Jame’ah. During these gatherings he gives many advices and thought provoking talks related to the betterment of one’s Self.
During his recent gathering my Shaykh mentioned a invaluable story mentioned by Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi رحمه الله. The story, to its nearest meaning, is as follows:
A man once had a horse which was extremely lazy. The horse would refuse to carry out any of his master’s work and would sit down in between any task, thus leaving it incomplete.
The master had made many attempts of reforming his horse, but to no avail the horse continued to disobey the master and was adamant upon not working.
After this continued for some time, the master decided that it was in his best interest to sell the horse in the market place and called for a salesperson who knew the market and was an expert on the field of selling horses. They agreed an amount for his services and he headed towards the marketplace with the horse.
The master accompanied the horse and the salesperson to the market to overlook the transaction.
At the marketplace, the salesperson took his spot and began advertising the horse he had for sale, “who will but this fantastic horse from me… this mighty strong horse… a hardworking and obedient horse who will give many years of service… you will not find a better horse at this discounted price….”
All the while the master was listening carefully to these words of the salesperson and he also noticed the increase in interest from those passing by, until it cam to the point where there was a large group of people gathering around the horse who all seemed intent on making a bid for the horse.
At this moment the master went to the salesperson and said to him, “if this horse is so good and hardworking then why should I sell it and benefit others. Give the horse to me for I shall take it back and take benefit from it myself”. Saying this he took the horse and returned to his house.
Moral of the Story
My Shaykh then continued to explain the moral of the story…
We are well aware of our situation and how disobedient we are towards Allah سبحانه وتعالى. We are more aware of our shortcomings than anyone else. We are witness upon our evil and sinister intentions and ploys. Yet when a few good words are said in regards to us we tend to forget all of the above and fall into the trap of praise and appreciation.
This is like the example of that ignorant man who was well aware of the defects of his horse, yet the praise of one man was sufficient for him to forget all those faults and take back a horse which he himself was displeased with.
We should always be present minded and be aware of our shortcomings. We are witnesses upon our wrong doings and we should never forget this in light of some praises which people may say about us. Yes, we should never display and announce our sins to others but at the same time we should never fall prey to praises in such a manner that we fail to see our downfall.
May Allah سبحانه وتعالى grant us all the understanding and give us the inclination and ability to stay steadfast upon the Deena. Aameen.