We recite the Dua taught to us by Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam,
اللهم اجعلنى فى عيني صغيرا وفى اعين الناس كبيرا
O Allah! Make me insignificant in my sight and big in the sight of people
This outwardly seems to be pride that one wants to be big in the sight of people. Allama Aaloosi Rahmatullah-e-Alayh has written, one of the Tafseer of Hasana fid Dunya is Thana-e-Khalq (people should praise you). Regarding this Dua of Rasulullah Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam, our Sheikh Rahmatullah-e-Alayh has beautifully explained that first we make Dua that we must be small in our sight, showing oneself as useless. We have been taught that we should address ourselves daily saying, “O Abdul Hamid (take one’s own name), currently you are the worst amongst all the believers, and as far as the future is concerned you are worse than the Kuffar as well.” The antibiotic is given first that you are insignificant.
I usually say that we are made to wear a Topi so that the head is kept small, and does not become big headed figuratively. If one becomes more pious then one should wear an Amaamah above the Topi so that there is no possibility of the head increasing. If a person remains insignificant, then no harm can reach a person even though people praise a person as the antibiotic has been given already. The people are praising me but they don’t know what a terrible person I am, they having good thoughts of me. This is a Dua for me.
Allah Jalla Jala Laho has made it such that the wife is above the man and she controls him. The entire world praises a person which makes one think that he is great but if he goes home for a few minutes he will know of his reality. The wife will thoroughly cleanse the husband of his thoughts of piety and greatness. The children also rectify their father but they will still consider the father, the Sheikh will also consider his Mureed but the wife will rectify the husband without any consideration.
Then the doubt is created that people will think that one wants to be great as he is making Dua that he must be big in the sight of people. You regard yourself as small and do not desire it, thus it will not harm you. The actions of others do not harm a person, it is one’s actions that harm him. If you really think that you are great after hearing the praises of people then this will harm you.
The desire to be big is for the sake of Deen. This does not apply to Deen but for all systems to function correctly that the senior must be respected. If the wife and children do not respect the father in the house, then such a house will be in chaos. If they respect the father, there will be system in that house. If students do not respect the Ustaad in the classroom, how will the students learn? It is necessary for the students to respect the Ustaad, in fact it is the duty of the Ustaad to instil respect within his students. This is commonly not done (by the parents) because we do not understand the subject and it seems as though we desiring respect. Due to not possessing respect the children do not know the value of their parents. The Ustaad does explain to his students the parent feels that another person should explain to the children.
If a person does not respect the Sheikh then he will not benefit at all. Alhamdulillah, here (in the Khanqah) the respect of the Sheikh is discussed from time to time so that the Mureed understands the position of the Sheikh and benefits. If the Sheikh makes Dua, “O Allah, let the Mureeds understand and realise my position so that they may benefit, there is no harm.” It should not be done for his own sake.
In many countries of the world as well as South Africa we have to drive on the left hand side of the road. By driving on the left hand side of the road one is driving on the right side, and if drives on the right side he is actually driving on the wrong side of the road. What will be the consequence of driving on the right side of the road? If there are three solid lines on a blind rise and one overtakes what will the consequence be? If a person stops when the traffic light is green and advances when it is red. If the laws on the road are respected there will be control on the road. You will sometimes find that a young person, or a drunk person, or one that is mentally disturbed, what don’t they do on the road? If respecting the rules of the road ensure order on the road, then respect of people will result in maintaining law and order as well.
Many people do not understand this and do not nurture their children accordingly. The parents, Ustaad, Sheikh should reprimand their juniors if the necessary respect is not found. This is acquired from the Mashaaikh, generally this cannot be acquired by the Ustaads or even the Kitaabs. May Allah Jalla Jala Laho reward our Sheikh Rahmatullah-e-Alayh as he had openly discussed these matters with us as a result we had benefitted tremendously.