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Education and Arrogance

Islam has warned against arrogance and self-conceit that create egoism and tyranny. They are also the indications of ignorance and pride. God said:

Do not attribute purity to your souls. He knows him best who guards against evil. Therefore, enter the gates of hell, to abide therein. So certainly evil is the dwelling place of the proud.

The Prophet said, “Three matters are annihilating. They are the obeyed niggardliness, the pursued fancy, and self-esteem.”. “Arrogance consumes the good deeds like fire when consumes wood.”.

Imam as-Sadiq (a) said, “Doom is the outcome of arrogance.”.

Islam has antagonized the evil tendency of arrogance that is originated from ignorance, pride, and rashness.

Blights of arrogance:

Arrogance causes serious mental blights, the most notable of which are as follows:

- Arrogance generates pride, self-esteem, and precedence.

- It results in the oblivion of sinning and the abandonment of God and the Hereafter.

-It perverts the deeds that are offered purely to God. As he was asked about the arrogance that perverts the good deeds, Imam Musa (a) said, “Arrogance is of different classes. A class makes the ill deeds seem to be good and admiring. Another class secures, falsely, from God; hence, the bearers of such an arrogance think they do favor to God, while the truth is that God is doing favors to everybody.”.

- It arouses self-esteem. The arrogant thinks of being guarded against God’s acts and punishment, and thinks he have many rights that are mandated upon God because he performs some rites.

-It leads to boasting and trespassing.

- It results in dictation and challenging the right.

Types of arrogance:

There are several types of arrogance. They are as follows:

- The vanity about richness and amenities. God said:

And he possessed much wealth; so, he said to his companion, while he disputed with him: I have greater wealth than you, and am mightier in followers.

As the Prophet (s) noticed a rich man roll his clothes while he was associating with a poor man, he said, “What! Do you anticipate that his poverty will affect you?”

- The vanity about the abundance of wealth and the power of the family. The holy Quran refers to this phenomenon. God says:

And they say: We have more wealth and children, and we shall not be punished.

- The vanity about power. The holy Quran exposes the story of the tribe of Ad who said, “Who is more powerful than we are?” This sort of vanity creates wars and seizure. The powers that are admired of their arms will tend to overcome the less powerful.

- The vanity about lineage and nationalities. Islam has antagonized such an ill quality and ruled of combating anyone that may call to it, because this racism disunites Muslims and promotes the variant trends. According to the Islamic viewpoint, Muslims should be one body of equal organs.

The vanity about ill opinions. God says:

What! Is he whose evil deed is made fairseeming to him so much so that he considers it good?
They think that they are well versed in skill of the work of hands. This is the compound ignorance.

- The vanity about knowledge. The students may esteem themselves and despise others. This is the most influential disease that deconstructs knowledge and takes away from God. The Prophet said, “The blight of knowledge is self-complacency.”

- The vanity about deeds and worship. This sort of arrogance nullifies the worship and creates pride.

Protection against arrogance:

The best way of guarding against arrogance is the thorough self-consideration. Man is the target of various calamities and misfortunes especially when none can realize or predict the coming. After death, man will not be more than an obscure thing and a mass of valueless dust. What for should man be arrogant? Any consideration and judgment will remove the elements of arrogance and takes back to the right.

Adapted from the book: "The Educational System in Islam" by: "Baqir Sharif Al-Qireshi"

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