Of the reverence of humans


One of my favorite hadiths (sayings of the prophet) states: “Whoever humbles himself before a rich man because of his wealth loses two-thirds of his faith. »

In our human relationships, it is customary to have reverence for people who have power or money. We see it in the relations between people, but also in the relations between states.

But faith should normally free people from these power dynamics, since those who have faith in God believe that things are in the hands of God, and that the true and only power is that which comes from God.

A person who therefore has a deep-rooted faith, cannot have reverence for others because of their power in this world, or their rank, even if it is a religious rank.

On the other hand, it must have equal respect for all people, regardless of their rank or situation.

Sura 80, called Abasa, which means “he frowned”, says: “He frowned and turned away, because the blind man came to him. Who will tell you? Perhaps this man is purifying himself, or is he entering into a reflection that is profitable to him? As for the one who is amply provided, you approach him with eagerness; it matters little to you that he does not purify himself (does not give alms). But he who comes to you filled with zeal and fear, you are not interested! No really ! This is a reminder. Anyone who wants it will remember it. (80:1-12)


In these verses, God admonishes the Prophet not to pay attention to a blind man, Abdullah ibn Um Maktoum, who had come to ask him to teach him the Koran, while Muhammad was in strategic discussion with the notables of Mecca who refused his message.

They show that the strategic goal of the Koranic message is not the attention of those who have power, but the respect for the dignity and the valorization of all people, especially those who have less social and financial power.

What is more: on several occasions, the Koran advances that “God imposes on a soul only what it can bear” (see al-Baqara 2:286). This means, for me, that the people worthy of reverence are in fact the people who endure the most (without pain), those who experience the greatest catastrophes, who endure wars, famines, losses, handicaps, and all the difficulties preserving their humanity.

Those who have faith are therefore those who do not humble themselves before or care about any external power in this world, because any power, money or rank can disappear in a second, but who carry a deep respect to the men and women who show us what the inner strength of humans can be.

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