Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) said, “The believer is the believer’s mirror, and the believer is the believer’s brother who guards him against loss and protects him when he is absent.” (Book #41, Hadith #4900 Sunan Abu Dawud)
I read this hadith and I wondered why the Prophet (pbuh) used the word mirror. What’s special about it? I reached the conclusion that the mirror has a lot of characteristics that the Prophet wants us to have. Here are a few of them:
1. It is honest, always tells the truth.
2. when it sees something wrong it gives advice quietly and nicely.
3. It tells also about good things, not the bad only.
4. It is always there to give you constant feedback.
5. We are not afraid to show it every weakness we have.
6. We always follow the advice and try to change to the better without feeling offended.
7. What’s in the mirror is a mirror image and the believer is an image of the other believer. (Show me your friends I’ll tell you who you are!!!)
One of the lessons we learn is that what we see in those around us is a reflection of what is within us. So the next time we feel frustrated or upset with someone perhaps before we say something to them, we need to ask ourselves, what is it in my own self, my attitude that I need to change in order for the situation to change.
Let us not waste time enjoying the faults of others while allowing ourselves to feel a sense of pride because we believe that we are somehow better than others.
The mirrors of ourselves are all around us, but sometimes we cannot see them properly. For parents, children can be those mirrors in terms of what they say and how they act. Children copy what they see.
Let us understand our behaviors so that we can work towards making changes that will make us better individuals in the sight of ourselves, others, and most importantly, in the sight of Allah.
Eman Sayed lives in Cairo, Egypt, with her four children and is interested in religious studies, parenting, and health.