Allah سبحانه وتعالى says of Rasulullah صلى الله عليه وسلم in the Holy Qurān,

فَلْيَنظُرِ الْإِنسَانُ مِمَّ خُلِقَ

So let man look – from what is he created.

[at Tariq 86/5]

This verse reminds us that we should focus on ourselves. When man thinks about his lowly origin, it will lead to humility. Many of the teachings of Allah and Rasūl Allāh صلى الله عليه وسلم are about looking inward and changing oneself. To look at oneself and change oneself is difficult, whereas it is easy to blame others and external factors. By blaming other people or other factors, it allows us to deny our own faults.

Often when there is a problem, we could resolve things but instead we choose to blame other things. Whenever there is fighting, argueing and quarreling, such as with family members, we should learn to control ourselves and change our own behaviour. We should not wait for everyone else to act on the Qurān and ḥadīth, rather we should act on them ourselves.

In a hadeeth Rasūl Allāh صلى الله عليه وسلم says

“A believer is a mirror of a believer.” [Abū Dāwūd]

“A believer is a mirror of a believer.” [Abū Dāwūd] – See more at: http://www.contentsoul.com/page/3/#sthash.IbOLdknx.dpuf

When a person looks in a mirror and sees a flaw, the mirror serves its purpose by allowing the person to recognise what needs to be changed. The person will then rectify that flaw. Similarly, we can rely on others to point out our faults. If someone sincerely points out our faults, we should be grateful.

Sayyiduna Umar ibn Khattab رضى الله عنه would say ‘May Allah have mercy on a man who offers me a gift of my faults’.

Enjoining the good and forbidding evil is an obligation for us. But, it is an obligation on ourselves before anybody else. We should work on our nafs before anyone else.

[This short excerpt is based on a majlis (gathering held for spiritual training) held by Shaykh Riyadh ul Haq on 17th November 2013].