Message to the Critics

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Mohammed Hijab

Channel: Mohammed Hijab

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Episode Transcript

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Salam Alaikum, Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh How are you guys doing?

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Well, honestly, it's this, I just was walking back from the gym. And I thought I'd actually make this video and share what's on my mind because I was thinking about this. First and foremost, I've been online for about seven years, I've been in the public sphere for about seven years now, which is approaching a decade. And in that time, I've gone through a rollercoaster of emotions. It's been very tempestuous and tumultuous time in terms of my own spiritual development, as well as my own psychological growth.

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And I have to be honest with you, since we're being open and honest, that in the beginning of my journey, and even up until quite recently, recently, when people used to criticize me, I was still the case, I'm not saying I'm been alleviated of this fully, but

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when people criticize me,

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I've had this tendency to have a knee jerk impulsive reaction, anger, disgust, maybe resentment.

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Why is that? I don't know. And sometimes I'll justify it to myself and put in like an ad hoc way. And I say to myself something like, look at them. They're challenging the truth, you know, and I would convince myself that the reason why I was angry with them was, whoever the haters may be,

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especially, especially Muslim haters, because within my own community is like, the closer they are to the people, the more raw the criticism can be.

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That I would convince myself that the reason why I have this very strong and raw emotion towards them, is because they're challenging the truth and look how unjust there they are. And I have to make the truth clear and known and all these kinds of things.

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But throughout Ramadan, and the more introspect about this matter, the more I actually realize that

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there's only a certain degree of truth in that proposition. Like, probably, and I would say this, in all honesty, yeah. The reason why I probably felt so

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outraged, okay, disappointed, outraged, angry, whatever it may be,

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was simply because

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I love myself very much.

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myself very much. I know, that sounds quite an

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embarrassing thing, maybe to admit.

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But

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that's the truth is self love. Yeah. Now, the truth is, I think all of us have that aspect of self love in us. And if you want to call it narcissism, call it that.

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But for me, it was particularly

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it was it was particular was particularly pronounced, I would say, yeah.

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And then Why think about it.

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The more thought about I should say, the more I realized that actually, all these critics would do me the biggest favor of all.

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Honestly,

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I spoke to one of them actually on the phone. And I mentioned. And he interestingly said about himself, that it's a win win situation, when I get criticized. It's either that

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it's either that the person is taking away from my sins.

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If I mean, if I want deviance, then the person is helping me get away from deviance and alleviating my sin on the Day of Judgment, or they are oppressing me, in which case, I will get their award on the day of judgment.

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And the more I think about it, the more I realize that critics are the greatest help of all.

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Man is motivated almost entirely by his insecurity.

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And I'm not different. And so when someone criticizes you,

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especially if there's a degree of truth and legitimacy of the criticism, whether it's your work or you as a person, your behavior, it does have an impact.

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And since we all have the self love, and let's say, mine was particularly pronounced, at least in my own self assessment,

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it was not comfortable.

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However now,

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since I've kind of rationalized this to myself, I'll be honest with you.

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I have changed the way I look at critics

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when especially Muslim critics, now they come out and they speak about me.

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Allah He I have actually changed the way my emotional disposition towards them has changed.

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I'm not making this up. I'm not saying this to score points on the public sphere. But I'm just sharing this to let you know that this is

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It's possible that you can actually change your emotional,

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you can actually change your emotional, reactive capacity. Yeah, towards people from resentment, and dare I even go to, as far as to say, verging on hate, and anger and disappointment and disgust.

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Almost, to the complete opposite. Almost to like, now I will law the maximum Allah like some critic, especially Muslims, actually only Muslims who are about to say now

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I actually feel a sense of appreciation to them. Like recently, there was one particular

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critic of my essay

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that there was doing this like message thing where they were doing a whole session about me and talking about literally taking my quotes and talking about me and stuff like that and saying he made this mistake came in since they came and like it was a 30 minute or 40 minute session.

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And I couldn't watch all of it either. But what I'm saying is, I'm thinking, wow, you're actually investing time into me, it's like that.

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Yanni.

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Honestly, I felt I felt a sense of gratitude towards them almost.

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Because critics

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are sometimes the greatest force of change. So what I'm saying to you is, if someone criticizes you and your life, yeah.

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Don't always show the need to react to that, or to attack them, like I have been doing for the last seven years. I'm not telling you this in a sanctimonious way. I'm telling you this in a way to actually

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all that, you know, I've been so good at this. I'm telling you this because it's honestly it's possible. I want you to know that it's possible. And there's one area that Kuranda has, really, especially when it comes to Muslims has changed my

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has really checked me, which is what Tegile fuchal Rubina, Hillel, Linda Dena, Amman put in my heart, any resentment to those who have believed.

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So what I'm saying is,

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there's a way to change the matter. There's a way you can change

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your feeling of anger and resentment and embitterment.

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To to a more

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refreshing kind of gratitude. There's a way of doing that. But it requires I think, it does require some deep introspection. And you need to kind of abstract yourself from yourself, D individualize yourself, look at yourself from the outside, like as if you are not you? Yeah. I mean, that's what I had to do. And then I, when they started doing that, so realizing, okay, this person has a point, this person from no world view or their perspective, whatever, maybe they're doing it for this reason, then you start to actually forgive people.

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Allah to Hepburn, if Allah Allah, as the Quran states, you know, you don't want people to forgive you. You have humble mental audio humko Memphis,

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be merciful to those under the Hadith says that be merciful to those on the earth. And Allah, the one and the one in the heaven will be merciful to you. So what I'm saying is,

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I want to share that with you, because I'm going on a journey. Maybe a lot of people are influenced by my journey. So this is part and parcel of my journey. My journey is that now that I look at people, criticism critics have for me, I don't feel the same sharp. I'm not saying now someone criticizes me, I don't feel anything. Still, I do feel something. But it's, I've become so desensitized to it.

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And I can see it for what it is that actually, both the criticism and the critic for me,

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are two different things as they were before.

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And I hope and it's so liberating, honestly, like, is spiritually and psychologically liberating. If I feel like if more if we could do more of that, as a community, in our families and our communities in our dealings with other Muslims, if we can do more of that Wallahi I think it's, it will alleviate so much of the anxieties of life, so much of the stresses of life, so much the problems in life and will make life better.

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But of course, that doesn't mean to say these critics, the armchair critics, and all these guys can just do and say whatever they want, because sometimes they do go far. But for the most part now, if, if the reaction is is more measured from outside,

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then as I say, it's going to be a positive force for change for good. Hope that makes sense, guys, I know I've been rambling but Aven with these kind of car talks and stuff, I don't plan them and just this stuff has been swirling around and fermenting in my mind for some time. So I thought I'd bring it up so I can get