Qualities or defects

A society is composed of individuals; therefore, a quality or a defect in any one person makes an impact on society. If we overcome our defects with good intentions, our social life will be improved but many people regard their defects as qualities; so they do not try to get rid of them. When an ailing man will not accept himself to be an ill person, why will he consult any doctor for treatment! Therefore, 19 such defects are mentioned here whose possessors assume these defects as their qualities.

1. Habit of putting things off unnecessarily

Some people have the habit of putting things off unnecessarily and they comment with pride, ‘I do not complete work quickly for anybody.’ Despite the fact that completing work on time is a quality and completing a task after just passing time aimlessly is a defect. People generally comment in this way, ‘I take a decision after very careful thought.’ It is a good practice to think before taking any decision but nature of decision varies from situation to situation because some decisions need to be made within few minutes, some within few hours and some take few days, for example, there is a case of extinguishing the fire and every fire is not extinguished by water; this is a kind of decision which needs to be made within a few minutes; similarly, decision of travelling by train or plane needs to be made many hours before departure so that reservation can be made; if someone is supposed to shift his house, he has to make a decision in hurry whether to shift or not because new month starts after 1st and one may have to pay the rent of next month too. Similarly, in case of any marriage proposal whether it should be accepted or not, in case of delay in replying the other party contacts someone else, thus one may lose a good marriage proposal. Therefore, one has only a few days to decide; so, taking a month for each decision could be a lack of one’s decision-making capacity which cannot be regarded as quality.

2. Claim of avoiding extravagance

Some misers comment like this, ‘I do not really spend even a single penny wastefully.’ However, they do not spend money even on necessary occasions. A leaking tap of their house keeps wasting water continuously which is also a sin in case of Israaf [wastefulness] but they remain under the illusion of frugality and do not agree to repair or change the leaking tap.  Now you tell us whether it is a quality or a defect!

3. Retaliation

Some people just lose their temper at any trivial piece of work which goes against their will and resort to heated arguments and even quarrel; thereafter, they comment with pride in a circle of friends, ‘We cannot tolerate, so, we just retaliate then and there.’ When the same individuals face such kind of people who pay them back and teach them a lesson, these individuals even suffer death as a consequence. So, they are no longer alive to share their views about this incident. Such kind of attitude lacking patience and tolerance has destroyed the peace of our society but the ignorant people regard it as their quality.

4. Claim of being straightforward

Some people comment, ‘Whether anybody likes this or not, we just say it to his face.’ Remember! It is not necessary to express each and every truth especially when there is a risk of hurting someone’s feelings or causing disgrace to him. Those who claim to be straightforward should ponder over it many a time in their childhood they might not have liked the curry cooked by their mother but they must have eaten it silently because they could have suffered the consequences due to their straightforwardness. In the same way, sometimes an employee gets deeply offended at the words uttered by his boss but he does not say anything in response because he can be sacked upon his reaction. Similarly, if someone has a bad breath, will any of his friends who claim to be straightforward dare say, ‘Dear! Keep cleaning your teeth.’ No one would do so because there is a risk that a friend will become displeased thus a friendship will come to an end. So, now tell me, is saying everything on someone’s face a quality or a defect?

5. Disliking interference

I am not answerable to anybody, I do not like interference of anyone in my work. No one can prevent me from doing what I want.’ After all such type of attitude makes one feel ashamed. We are humans, and to err is human. If we carry out a work with mutual understanding following a system, it reduces the possibility of making mistakes and if any mistake is occurred then all take the responsibility collectively otherwise sometimes the one who just follows his whim gets stuck so badly that no one comes to help him.

6. I do not care for anybody

I do not care for anybody, nor do I have any regard for anyone’ such types of sentences are considered to be the qualities and are uttered with pride whereas people in a society make their life easy by taking care of one another. So, while driving a car, does such kind of person not care for other’s vehicles? Does he not give importance to his own children? He perhaps does not have regard for his subordinates. By temperament, such people become humble and kneel before those who appear stricter. Is it a quality or a defect?

7. Using difficult words in conversation

Some people are habitual of using very difficult words in conversation and become happy by showing their excellence in having a command of the language. Considering it one’s quality can only be an illusion because he is not able to make a living person understand his point, so, who can say it to be any quality and success?

8. Considering oneself to be sensitive

One who considers himself to be sensitive becomes worried about trivial matters, becomes nervous in a tough situation, feels offended at petty issues and he tries to hide his defect under the pretext of being sensitive. Such type of person should understand this fact that happiness and sadness are part of our life we cannot do without them; life is filled with happiness, sadness, tears, smiles etc. If one fails to adapt according to the situation, he faces troubles.

9. Showing no sympathy at other’s distress

Crying and wailing of anybody does not affect me’, one who comments in this way, it is as if he wants to prove himself to be a hard-hearted and unsympathetic. A’la Hadrat رَحْمَةُ اللہِ تَعَالٰی عَلَيْه truly said, ‘An unsympathetic person does not understand other’s distress.’ (Fatawa Razawiyyah, vol. 16, pp. 310)

10. Understanding whole point after listening to half of it

Some are habitual of not listening to others peacefully; they instantly stop others in middle leaving their conversation incomplete and comment in this way, ‘It is enough; I have understood your point.’ Thereafter they consider this practice to be their virtue. If Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ has bestowed upon someone the ability to understand others quickly then he should act in a graceful manner saying, ‘Perhaps you would like to say this thing.

Worth-noticing thing is that if one understands correctly the whole point after listening to half sentence and even he completes it himself then still it would take the same amount of time, so, is it not better to let others complete their point themselves? People also feel relaxed and satisfied when they complete their points themselves but perhaps those indulged in this habit love to express their ability. When a pious person wanted to say something in the court, the judge stopped him immediately from doing so and said, ‘By Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ! You would not speak anything truth.’ That pious person recited a blessed Ayah of Glorious Quran and said, ‘Honourable judge! Pay Kaffarah [expiation] for your oath because what can be truer than the Word of Allah عَزَّوَجَلَّ?

11. Criticising everyone

Some people are habitual of criticising everything unnecessarily, they do not care as to who should criticise? Who should be criticised? How to ciritisize? When to ciritisize? Such people manage to find the opportunity of criticising others in everything; they perhaps regard the practice of criticising as their quality. A person had the status of ‘Wilayat’ but his wife did not acknowledge his spiritual status. One day he decided to manifest his saintly miracle so that his wife may also accept his status of Wilayat and treat him accordingly. So, he flew around his house and returned home after a while. Wife said, ‘The blessed saint was that person who was flying in the sky.’ The husband replied, ‘O pious woman! That saint was no one else but me.’ The wife immediately responded back, ‘Ah! It is for the reason he was not flying straight.’

12. Considering oneself to be intelligent and clever

Some people consider themselves to be intelligent and clever; claiming it may not be an objectionable point but they also consider others to be a fool. When they make fool of someone successfully by their cleverness, they comment in this way, ‘Look, how we have made fool of him!

13. Showing stubbornness regarding everything

Can the following acts such as showing stubbornness regarding everything, not acceding to other’s point of view but wanting others to accede to their demands and showing no flexibility according to the situation, be qualities of someone? If it is asked to children, they perhaps respond in affirmative, however, a sensible person will declare it nothing but a flaw or defect. This is also a root cause of many domestic and business problems.

14. Always being reserved

Caring for others and showing consideration towards them increase honour and reverence but people should meet and mingle with people according to the situation but some people, no matter, wherever they go, they always remain reserved and consider it to be their quality. Someone sits beside you but avoid talking to you, if you like this thing then this could be an appreciable practice for you alone.

15. Showing excessive bravery

One should not be coward and timid but showing excessive bravery is also a defect. Climbing electric pole, getting on a running bus or train, driving too fast, doing one wheeling, riding a motorbike without using hands could be the acts of foolishness but not the acts of bravery. These ‘so-called qualities’ mostly prove costly and result in fatal accidents.

16. Judging a book by its cover

I identify people by seeing their physical appearance as to whether they are truly distressed or acting, whether speaking the truth or telling a lie.’ However, the art of assessing a person’s character or personality from their apparent appearance is a fact but considering oneself to be an expert in this art and strongly declaring someone bad etc., could prove wrong; you would have provided an opportunity to that person to express his viewpoint and listened to him. Unfortunately, there is no cure for such a person who considers this defect to be his quality.

17. Hair-splitting

Trying to get into the detail of each and everything and inquiring into the matters unnecessarily are not the acts of wisdom. People consider themselves a subtle knower and declare it to be their quality. How can this be correct?

18. Aggressive behaviour

The following acts such as adopting aggressive behaviour, flying into a rage at trivial matters, throwing things at others, talking in a strict way etc., cannot be worth-appreciating. Those who consider it their quality are truly pitiable.

19. Excessive self-confidence

The trait of self-confidence is very important for success but if this confidence exceeds limits then it may cause a loss.

Dear Islamic brothers! Learn to distinguish between quality and defect; not only will you live happily but also others, اِنْ شَـآءَ اللہ عَزَّوَجَلَّ.

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