Letter to the Self # 19: The Big “I”

Letter to the Self # 19: The Big “I”
Ramadan Day 18

By Jeewan Chanicka

Be careful not to develop a culture of entitlement where you do the bear minimum and expect much in return. It is your divine duty or worship to your Creator- that whatever you do, you do to the best of your ability.

Dear Self,

Everywhere we turn, I hear the words, “me”, “I”, “live YOUR life the way YOU want, that’s all that matters!”, “It’s about ME and what I want”. But, is it all that matters? It is important that we search for our purpose and then live to be the best we can, to contribute ourselves, fully and totally; to find happiness and contentment in our lives. It is only when we nurture our spirits and fulfill our purpose for living can we have a fulfilling relationship with our Creator and be free of living our lives in the eyes of others.

But, is living life the way WE want really all that matters? Where is the line of balance that must temper our actions? Our acknowledgment that we did not come into the world by ourselves, we did not raise ourselves, and more importantly- that our actions impact others too. Many others have sacrificed, helped, facilitated our journey to where we are standing right now.

Today, this sense of entitlement seems to have taken over so many peoples’ lives that they have become rude and arrogant to their family members, to neighbours, in their workplaces and in the community. Today in our society, many people show up in, do the bare minimum required and expect that they should get the best rewards for it. There is no sense of working for what we want; of going above and beyond what is expected and trying our best at what we do.

As a Muslim, your signature is- Ihsan or excellence. You do your best, because you know that God is watching you. You do your best because this IS YOUR WORSHIP. Whatever you do, you should be trying to excel- not for praise, not for acknowledgment by others, but because it is your divine duty. You have been blessed with certain talents- those are gifts, you did not create them on your own. So while it may be a privilege, it is your responsibility to do your best.

Prophet Muhammed ( peace be upon him) was known as “uswatun hasana” the perfect example. He strived to be the best that he could with what he had by Allah’s mercy. So too should you.

So Self, don’t be ungrateful or selfish; don’t expect that your parents are just supposed to give you what you want; or that your husband or wife should just do certain things for you. To live a life filled with love and compassion necessitates sacrifice and compromise and there is also happiness to be found when the people around you are happy, even if you have to do without.

Be careful that you are not developing a culture of entitlement- people who do little- the bare minimum- and expect a lot. That is an attitude of ingratitude and it will not get you far in the eyes of people or in the eyes of God.


Diary Series:
Letter to the Self # 18: Insecurities
Letter to the Self # 17: Backbiting
Letter to the Self # 16: Knowledge or Just Information?
Letter to the Self # 15: Beyond the Limited Self
Letter to the Self # 14: A Better Way
Letter to the Self # 13: The Spoken Word
Letter to the Self # 12: A Blessing or a Curse?
Letter to the Self # 11: PurposeLetter to the Self #10: Let’s Partey
Letter to the Self #9: Looking Good
Letter to the Self #8: Worship
Letter to the Self #7: Rights of the Body
Letter to the Self#6: Time
Letter to the Self #5: Gratitude
Letter to the Self #4: Laziness
Letter to the Self #3: Arrogance
Letter to the Self #2: Ego
Shaban: Letters to the Self

Related Topics:
One is the Loneliest Number https://hwaairfan.wordpress.com/2010/05/22/one-is-the-loneliest-number/