What happened to the world that used to love and cherish the knowledge seekers. Now it seems people are chasing the paparazzi. The fame and fortune of the temporary world. People of status have their necks in the air as we are inferior to them. (Sorry, I need a cigarette break, this is personal).
The low class is vying to be part of the middle class or high class — basic socioeconomics of classism. People with fancy cars, working as bureaucrats collecting taxes in the name of the government. I have heard on NPR (National Public Radio) that anytime you have to pay a public official to do something; it’s a bribe that we are paying (i.e., water bill, eviction court, streets and sanitation, lottery, and the list goes on and on). So the mafia has become our elected officials. The rich get richer, and the poor get poorer (guess what time it is, another cigarette break).
Real Role Models
I find that homeless people are the most humble — the most sincere, the friendliest. Even if you do not give them any money when you see them begging for change, they still tell you “thank you” as you drive off in your car. Having homelessness is a failure on all of us. Jesus talked about loving thy neighbor. We have failed in this mission. Many homeless people suffer from mental illnesses, and alcohol and drug addictions. We need to stop with the labels of laziness, alcoholics, drug addicts; it’s a time for healing — an opportunity for compassion, empathy, and pure love.
Driving For Uber
One night I was driving and working for Uber, and I had three passengers in the back seat of my car. A homeless man approached me and asked for change. Now, the two ladies and man in the back started to criticize the homeless man, calling him a “bum” and other negative adjectives. I felt terrible for the situation; I reached in my pocket and gave the homeless person a few dollars. The people in the backseat automatically reacted positively. They started to thank me for being generous. It was like a switch. I diffused the situation with a few dollars and made my passengers realize that simple gestures can make a world of difference.
Life in the Fast Lane
Think about all the celebrities that have died from being famous and wealthy. Yes, I believe that Prince, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Elvis, and many others would live far longer lives, if they were not popular. They would have productive lives and had more time to spend with their loved ones. I think music played a big part in their drug addiction — something about the devil’s tune that makes people self destruct.
On a personal level, I never want to be famous, never want to be wealthy. I have witnessed what wealth can do to people. I believe it corrupts the heart. Islam preaches that if we give the Children of Adam a valley of gold, they would want another one. In other words, if you make a million dollars, you would wish for another million dollars. We will never get full in this world until they bury us in our graves. The mud for our burials will quench our thirst for this world.
The Seal of The Prophets
The Prophet Muhammed stated we should never compete in wealth and children. We should compete in good deeds. After all, our wealth and children stay, but our deeds go with us to the promised land of eternity. Next time you see a hungry mouth, feed that person. It might be your ticket to paradise. Try fasting; it should eradicate the demons that are in your heart and mind. Go without food and water and you will realize you have everything you need and more. Count your blessings. Remember, your net worth is not what you have in your bank account, its what you can do for others.
I need another cigarette break-wait, think for a moment. Fasting without food and water from sun up to sun down has made me realize that I can rid myself of nicotine addiction. But learning how to be humble, that is a life’s journey. And becoming arrogant is something of a quick fix.
Aslam alkaum (peace be upon you).