Buzrjamhar, the wise man of Persia, related the story of Khosrau the king and the old lady:
The latter possessed a chicken and a small hut, which was situated on a small plot of land that neighbored the palace of Khosrau. One day, she had to travel to another village, and before departing she prayed, “O’ my Lord, I entrust my chicken to You.” During her absence, Khosrau usurped her property in order to expand the gardens of his palace. His army slaughtered the chicken and destroyed the cottage. When she returned and discovered the deplorable act, she turned her gaze to the sky and said, “O’ my Lord, I was absent and where were You?” Then Allah (GOD) granted revenge for her. It came to pass that the son of Khosrau attacked his father with a knife and killed him.
The believer has a mission and a message that are more important than revenge, malice, and hate.
Most people who are remembered today for their greatness had to overcome many obstacles on their path: their perseverance was akin to obstinacy. They felt a weakness in one faculty or area that required compensation in another.
Many great scholars were handicapped in one way or another. Some were blind, others were deaf, and yet others were bereft of a limb, and so on. Yet despite these handicaps, they influenced generations to come after them, and they were able to contribute to mankind.
A diploma from a prestigious University is not everything. Do not be down or despondent because you weren’t able to earn a University degree. Even without a diploma in your hand, you can still shine and contribute greatly to mankind. There are many famous and eminent people who do not have degrees. They made their way in life and overcame insurmountable obstacles with an iron will and a strong determination.
You have a great treasure with you if you are of the type who is contented with any situation.
Be contented with your family, your income, your car, and your job. If you are contented with all of these, then you will have found happiness and peace.
A man related that he once entered a taxi at the airport and ordered the driver to take him to the city. He said, “I noticed that the driver was happy and good-humored. He would constantly praise Allah (GOD), thank Him, and remember Him. I asked him about his family and he said that he was the breadwinner for two families. Meanwhile, his monthly salary was a paltry sum of 800 $, and he and his family had to live in a run-down building. Yet, his mind was at peace because he was thankful for what Allah (GOD) had allotted for him.”
The narrator then went on to say, “I felt amazed when I compared this man to others who lead a life of affluence with money, luxury cars, and large mansions. In spite of such opulence, they live such miserable lives, and upon reflection, I realized that happiness is not in wealth.”
I knew a tycoon who had hundreds of millions and a number of mansions. He was miserable in his relationships, always seething with anger and always brooding in a state of depression. He died estranged from his family, and he went through all of this misery because he was not satisfied with what Allah (GOD) gave him.
I know people who have been afflicted with poverty, misery, and depression. In the case of every one of them, the cause of their downfall was that they were far away from Allah (GOD). You will find that one of them was rich, comfortable, and in a state of good health from his Lord. But then he turned away from the obedience of Allah (GOD). He was negligent in performing his prayers and he began to commit major sins. So Allah (GOD), the Almighty, took away his health and wealth and replaced them with the hardship of poverty, worry, and anxiety. He went from misery to misery, from low-point to a point that was even lower.
If I were able to perform a miracle, I would remove off you your troubles and grief, however, being bereft of the ability thereof, I will suffice by prescribing for you a medical prescription that is given by the scholars. It is to worship the Creator (without associating any partner with Him in worship), to be contented with your provision, to be abstemious, and to decrease the level of your expectations for this life.
The famous American psychologist, William James, spoke these words that caught my attention:
“We, humankind, brood over what we don’t own and we don’t thank Allah (GOD) for what we do own. We always dwell on the tragic and dark side of our lives, and we don’t look at the brighter side of our existence. We rue over what is missing in our lives and we are not happy with what is there.”