By Abu Muhammad Yusuf
It may be an athletic race, an exam, a business deal, an argument or whatever; our human instinct wants us to be at the top. We all want to win the battle, but in the process are we not losing the war?
In pursuit of our material goals we often lose focus and although we may “achieve, win or succeed”, it could be at a substantial cost to ourselves, families, friends and community.
A few years ago at a Special Athletics Meeting, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 50 meter race. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win.
All, that is, except one boy who stumbled on the tarmac, tumbled over a couple of times and began to cry. The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. They all turned around and went back. Every one of them!
One with Down’s Syndrome bent down and kissed him and said, “This will make it better.”
All nine linked arms and walked across the finish line together.
Everyone in the stadium stood, and the cheering went on for several minutes. People who were there are still telling the story. Why? Because deep down we know this one thing:
What matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves. What truly matters in this life is helping others win, even if it means slowing down and changing our course.
“By helping others achieve their dreams, we will be achieving our own!”
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon) is reported to have said;
“He who is not merciful to people, Allah will not be merciful to him.” (Hadith-Bukhari & Muslim)
In pursuing our ambitions let us not become unmindful of those around us for indeed the road to success is paved by helping and caring for others and if we cannot help or support them, then let us not by our conduct hurt them.
Indeed the bigger picture is NOT about winning the race but about bringing joy and happiness to those around us whether we win the race or not!