I have been suffering lately with the diseases of pride. I am trying to be a better Muslimah than I was before. However, since I started to change, pride has crept into my heart and these thoughts disturb me. I don’t wish for Allah Ta‘ala to be displeased with me.
Please advise me as to what I must do to completely get rid of the pride in my heart and instead fill it with true love for Allah Ta‘ala.
Wa ‘alaikumus salaam wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh
Pride is indeed a very destructive malady. One should therefore always be making an effort to keep one’s heart clean of pride. Among the initial steps to undertake in order to treat pride are the following:
1. Daily make earnest du‘aa to Allah Ta‘ala that you be blessed with tawaadhu’ (humility) and be cleansed from every iota of pride.
2. Try and read about the humility of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), the Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) and the pious personalities of the Ummah.
3. Always initiate salaam with all (besides non-mahram males), whether young or old, and especially those who you feel you are better than them.
4. Always try to serve others whenever you can – especially those who are younger than you and those who apparently do not have any position in the eyes of people. Service in menial tasks will be even more effective. Wherever possible do it in such a way that nobody even notices and nobody even comments.
5. Daily make the following muraaqabah (meditation): Meditate and keep saying to yourself: “I am nobody. I am nothing. Everyone else is better than me. I am full of sins and faults … etc.”. Do this for at least 5 minutes morning and evening.
While you should do the above, do not be perturbed by the “waswasah” (Shaitaani whispers) and mere thoughts of pride. When such thoughts come, merely counter them by thinking in the manner described in the muraaqabah. Insha-Allah this will clear the heart of the thoughts of pride.
May Allah Ta‘ala assist you.
Uswatul Muslimah Panel of ‘Ulama