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Everyone Does Like This - So Will I

Submitted by Marjana on Thu, 22/12/2011 - 22:07
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One of the most common temptations leading to the biggest disaster is the temptation of the words: "Everyone does like this."
This quote said by an outstanding Russian writer Lev Tolstoy is most relevant nowadays. People cannot even imagine the degree of danger of this phrase. It leads to corruption of personality, to distortion of comprehension of difference between appropriate and inappropriate things. 
“Everybody do like this – so will I; if everybody does like this then it is normal to do like this”, - we say to ourselves.  And gradually more people get involved into a great self-deception and distortion of moral principles. Soon it is treated as a norm of life. 
I want to give one story as an example. It is not a story about Islamic morals but it is about common morals.
Once students were preparing for an examination in the university studding hall. Some were sitting investigating books carefully; others were preparing some cue cards. One of the students, a very good looking girl, notorious for her impudence and lack of sense, took her book and tore off some pages. She performed this action in a way that all other students could see this and could value her action. She liked to represent herself as an impudent and sly girl. Actually she thought these threats of her character were a passport to success for her future. 
“What are you doing? This is wicked”, said to her nerdy girl sitting next to her and being astonished seeing the torn book. 
“I don’t care. I cannot read this foolish book any longer. It really explodes my brain. What an idiotic language. I can’t remember anything at all, so I better use these pages at the exam”.
Another girl supported her. She looked quite exhausted of studding and wished to get rid of her efforts:
“Oh you are right! I’m so bored of these terms. Don’t want to learn them any longer. Anyway I will not use them in my life ever.”
Other students listened to the dialogue between three girls. No one else replied.
 As the nerdy girl did not get any support from others she remained silent, touched her glasses, and continued her preparation for the exam. In fact she did not want to get into conflict with an impudent girl as she knew it was useless. 
When the time to go home came a small shy girl went to bathroom and while no one saw her tore off the pages she needed and quietly returned the book to the library. 
Next day when another group of students came to the study hall the librarian was horrified by the fact that there was only one normal book left and all others were spoiled.

The bad action set as an example found its followers easily while attempting to stop a wrong action did not get any support. Unfortunately this often happens in our life. And it is a good question why. In fact the answer is very simple: when someone cheats he can get what he wants easily without efforts, while doing things in a right honest way requires efforts which not many of us are ready to do because of the weakness of our character. 
This is the society where we live in. And we continue focusing on the mistakes of others  wondering why some of us are so impolite, so impudent, so wicked. There is one more quote by Lev Tolstoy related to the topic:

”Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”

And if we want to change things we should start from ourselves. No one is responsible for our actions besides us. And no one knows this better than believers.
As it is said in Quran: “Verily we have made that which is on earth as an adornment for it, in order that we may test them (mankind) as to which of them are best in deeds” (18:7)
Whatever we do hideously or openly we know that Allah Almighty knows about our actions.   It is very sad that many Muslims don’t want to remember about this and become a part of a big self-deception. They prefer to imitate lifestyle dictated by television and say to themselves that this is the norm of life. 
This is what beyond of understanding: when we possess knowledge given to us by Allah and we ignore it, when we have an example of the best of men Prophet Mohammad (SAS) and we ignore it, and we prefer to live according to the principle "Everyone does like this."