So you don’t want anyone to be better or superior than you in terms of strength or fame or power or beauty? You can’t imagine anyone with far more riches and wealth than you have? You think your kids are the best in town and there is no one else who can defeat them? If you hear about someone who has exceeded in popularity, do you start talking bad about that person?
This is jealousy when you envy someone for his/her victories, wealth, high status, handsome salary, beauty or other such worldly benefits.
Characteristics of a jealous person: A person who is jealous will make all possible efforts in planning strategies to somehow weaken that person and bring him/her to a position lower than before. He would keep hoping that the person loses all power and wealth and that his power and wealth be given to himself by Allah Almighty. In achieving his plans, the person will come to all possible forms of harming the other person, be it material, physical or mental harm. He does not realise what a great sin this is but on the Day of Reckoning, he will be punished severely for this deed of his.
Even if he has been a good Muslim throughout his life, said his prayers, kept fasts in the month of Ramadhan and performed good deeds but if he has even a single bit of jealousy for anyone in his heart, he will be asked for justification and given punishment for that.
According to another Ahadith by Sahih Muslim : “Twice a week, on Monday and Thursday people’s deeds are presented and forgiveness is granted, except for two types of people – those who have malice and nourish enmity, it is commanded that forgiveness should not be entered into their accounts till such time as they renounce these dangerous feelings and purify their hearts”.
Hadhrat Abu Huraira (May Allah be pleased with him) said that our Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) once said : “Avoid the disease of jealousy as it combusts good deeds just as fire devours wood“.
How bad is that? Its worse actually as a common person like any of us is not very religious in the actual sense, we miss some prayers sometimes, we don’t spend the late night hours in prostration, so our records consists of a lot of mistakes from our side and if we envy someone or are jealous of someone, whatever good deeds that we have done will also be omitted! In this way we will become ’empty’ and on the day of Reckoning we will not have much in our book to show. How then will we face our Creator? What will He say? After all He has created us all equally from a clot. Its His desire to give more fame or power or beauty to one person and lesser to the other. We, human beings are no one to judge who is superior and why Allah has given lesser to us and more to someone else.
A person must be satisfied with whatever Allah has given to him and he must live within his means. Whatever Allah has ordained upon each human, will indeed fall upon him. Don’t count other’s blessings; instead work hard and strive for your own and for your family’s welfare.
In order to discourage envy, the Prophet (P.B.U.H) said: “Do not look to those above you. Look to those below you, as it will more likely remind you of Allah’s favors bestowed on you.” Just have a look around you. Your friends, your neighbours, your colleagues, you will notice that many of them are bestowed with lesser blessings by Allah and they are living a life more difficult than you are. So look at those who have lesser than you have, in this way you will thank God for being so grateful to you. One should always keep praying and make supplications to Allah Almighty to purify our hearts, rid us of jealousy and envy and grant us pardon.