Being a wife, a daughter and a student means that I have to get used with being criticised. But unfortunately – I am not. Not until lately.
Criticism – no matter how good a person put his words when he criticised – can still has a detrimental effect on me.
It has the power to control my emotions and my thoughts. I’ve always struggled in finding ways to escape from this feeling. Nevertheless, I know that with Allah – anything is possible.
So like always, I finally turned to Him for help.
One evening, as I’ve completed the A’sr prayer, I just sat there praying and hoping that Allah could take away that awful feeling from me.
And subhanallah – when you put your hope in Allah, Allah will never desert you.
So, soon after that, a long forgotten story suddenly came back to my mind. It was about how the best human being ever living on earth, Muhammad ﷺ was being criticised by Allah!
It happened when one day – the Prophet ﷺ rushed to address one of the great leaders in Quraisy. At that moment, He was hoping that this prominent man of Quraisy would embrace Islam.
But, little did he expect that a blinded man would come to him in the middle of his rush, seeking for guidance.
Despite of the blinded man’s eagerness for guidance, the Prophet ﷺ frowned to him and directed his attention to the leader of Quraisy.
Consequently, Allah has criticised the Prophet’s action for belittling the blinded man through the revelations of the Quran as He said:
“The Prophet frowned and turned away. Because there came to him the blind man, But what would make you perceive, [O Muhammad], that perhaps he might be purified Or be reminded and the remembrance would benefit him? As for he who thinks himself without need, To him you give attention. And not upon you [is any blame] if he will not be purified. But as for he who came to you striving [for knowledge]. While he fears [ Allah ], From him you are distracted. No! Indeed, these verses are a reminder; So whoever wills may remember it.” [‘Abasa: 1- 12]
A beautiful reminder indeed.
Straight away I asked myself – “Who am I to escape from being criticised if even the BEST was being criticised?”
Following those reminders from Allah, the Prophet ﷺ admitted his shortcoming and even treated the blinded man better than ever!
Again, I asked myself – “The Prophet accepted it with open heart. He did not argue nor did he felt unappreciated for his efforts. Instead, he improved and treated others, better! So why is it so hard for me to accept constructive criticism openly and strive to improve myself?”
Now, whenever I receive criticism, I don’t let it dictate my world anymore as I’ve learnt to accept it beautifully. I realised that nobody is perfect.
So, like what the Prophet ﷺ did – I’ve learnt to strive to be better, not to strive to be perfect.