Wishing for others what we wish for ourselves
Islam teaches us to wish for others what we wish for ourselves. We read in a hadith:
Narrated Anas: The Prophet (SAW) said, “None of you will have faith till he wishes for his (Muslim) brother what he likes for himself.” (Sahih Bukhari)
This also means avoiding feelings of jealousy towards other people. Jealousy and envy are unhealthy for us and our Imaan, so we should try our best to avoid these thoughts. For example, if we see a person in our community has been successful in something which we have not, we should move away from envying their success.
We should strive to be genuinely happy about other people’s achievements. If we hear that a member of our family has been offered a respectable job, we should try to ensure that we are sincerely happy for them and not just showing positivity on a surface-level.
It is important for us to understand that Allah will give us something good if we wish good on others. Therefore, when we hope for others to achieve what we ourselves hope to achieve, it will be better for us. This could be in terms of our education, such as when we aim for high grades – we should also hope that others are awarded the same.
Having a mindset which harbours insecurity on hearing about the success of other people harms our emotional wellbeing. We should think about how we would feel if we discovered that another person felt disappointed to hear about our success in something. Of course, we would never hope to hear that there may be people amongst our own family, friends or community who are unhappy about our achievements.
Furthermore, when we are unhappy about the success of another person, time is wasted on those thoughts. In the same duration, we could actually be focusing on doing things that do make us happy.
It is vital for us not to wish ill on others, as not only is it bad for our deeds, but we have to realise that it will not change anything about the situation, other than make us feel worse. Feeling low about these things will not suddenly mean that we will achieve what others have achieved. This is why it is so important to focus on working on ourselves instead.
May Allah make us of those who wish others well and are genuinely happy about the achievements of others. Aameen.