Me, Myself & You

// August 3rd, 2007 // Blog

Recently, i have become very conscious of how easily influenced i am by the people i associate with. I'm not referring to my reaction to overt peer pressure, but rather, the way in which i subtly adopt the mannerisms, and even outlook, of my immediate company.

I suppose this realization stems from the fact that, nowadays, i am more aware of how i should behave, islamically speaking, so i am in a better position to compare the behaviour of the people i surround myself with, with what Islam expects from us.

Most of the time i try to think well of people, which can potentially make me a bad judge of character; i find it a lot easier to look within, and spot things that i don't like about myself – perhaps because i have spent a lot of time in my own company, being an only child. So now i find myself judging others, not directly via their own actions, but rather, indirectly, via the influence they have on me:

  1. Do you make me feel good, like a decent human being, or encourage me to be a better person, even without openly advising me, but just through your own pleasing conduct? If so, i am likely to love you, and if i could, i'd put you in my pocket and carry you everywhere.
  2. Or, do you bring me down, and make me regret? Even though when i am with you, i may laugh, and joke, and have 'fun', but afterwards, i feel remorse. I don't blame you; it is my own weakness. But i just can't afford to be brought any lower than i already am. If this is the case, then i think it is best that we part ways.

Sometimes, a relationship can begin one way, and evolve into its opposite. I've had good friendships turn bad, and bad associates, turn into best friends. Even “too much of a good thing” can cause problems. As always, balance is key.

Also, it is possible that two individuals who behave quite normally with the rest of society, for whatever reason, have the ability to bring the best, or worst, out of one another; this is a phenomenon that can clearly be observed in marriage, and it is something that i have begun to consider when assessing the suitability of a proposal. I pray to Allāh for the former scenario, and seek refuge in Allāh from the latter.

Maybe this is an egocentric way to view my peers – but when it comes to my soul, my happiness, and the scale of good and bad deeds, well… i gotsta be a little self-centred, right?

Update: I remembered a related post on friendship, that i wrote way, way back!

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