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Humbleness and Humility

Iqbal Ebrahim

The twins of humbleness and humility are very desirable characteristics and qualities in every human being because they add up to the personae of modesty; on the flip side is immodesty and arrogance. Modesty brings about humility which unfortunately in the world of today, some of us readily interpret it to mean subservience or shyness in a person.

On the contrary a modest person is a quietly confident person because deep down he knows that he does not have to put up a facade simply to impress people. This brings about sincerity and honesty in a person.

‘And swell not thy cheek (with pride) for men, nor walk in insolence through the earth; for Allah does not love the arrogant boaster’ (Quran 31:18)

You either have it or you don’t – modesty is a virtue that is linked to humility. Those that have it will act and behave in a manner that shows a balance and control in their actions, behaviour, dress, chastity, speech and consideration in their daily interaction with society at large – they usually prefer flying below the radar.

If we lack modesty there is always the possibility that we can do and say things just to make an impression on others, usually the impression is based on boasting of our achievements, wealth, material possessions, designer clothing and all the trappings of this world. This immodesty in most cases leads to arrogance, an inflated ego and is likely to make a person rude and insensitive to the feelings of others.

Those who are not modest usually are the ones who tend to do things or act in a manner that attracts the attention of those around them, they are the ‘look at me, look at me’ type more often than not they tend to be more self-centred. Lack of modesty often makes these people boastful loud mouths, arrogant, rude, and prone to use impolite language which is usually a dead giveaway of their immaturity, insecurity, low self-esteem and sense of self-worth.

Unfortunately some people believe that humbleness and humility are signs of weakness. Without having a sense of modesty or modest behaviour, can lead one to the slippery path of immoral behaviour.

The Quran has a list of 'Etiquettes' which we are advised to maintain in our dealings with each other on a daily basis. Islam teaches us and requires us to live a life of modesty – modesty in our lives, dress, speech, actions, behaviour, the manner in which we treat others – in fact it even goes as far as the manner in which we spend our money, we should do so without show and wastage. Islam does not prohibit us from owning legitimately earned wealth, however it has set limits to the manner in which we spend it, especially it discourages reckless wastage of it just to ‘show off’.

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said:’ modesty is part of faith, and faith is in Paradise, but obscenity is part of hardness of the heart and hardness of the heart is in Hell’.

To inculcate the virtue of modesty, below is that list of recommendations for us to 'hear & obey', and this is bound lead to happiness for all involved.

Always Respond to a 'Greeting':

"When greeted with a greeting, you shall respond with a better greeting or at least an equal one. Allah reckons all things." (4:86)

Always Say 'Good' things:

‘Allah sets forth a parable a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches reach to the heavens, it brings forth fruit at all times by the leave of Allah…………. Allah thus cites the examples for the people, that they may take heed.’ (Quran 14:24-25)

Be 'Humble', and speak 'Lightly':

‘Walk humbly and lower your voice, the harshest sound is that of a braying donkey.’ (31:19). The Bible also says: “Talk no more so exceedingly proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth (1 Samuel 2:3)

Invite people to the path of GOD with Wisdom and Kindness:

‘Invite to the path of your Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and debate with them in the ways that are best and most gracious. Your Lord knows best who has strayed from His path, and He knows best who receive guidance.’ (16:125)

Be Kind to your parents:

"Your Lord has decreed that you shall not worship except Him, and your parents shall be honoured. As long as one or both of them live, you shall never say to them, "Uff" (the slightest gesture of annoyance), nor shall you shout at them; you shall treat them amicably. And lower for them the wings of humility, and kindness, and say, "My Lord, have mercy on them, for they have raised me from infancy." (17:23-24)

Suppress Anger & Forgive People:

‘Those who give to charity during the good times, as well as the bad times: who restrain their anger, and pardon all men – for Allah loves those who do good’. (3:134)

Counter Evil with Good:

‘Nor can goodness and evil be equal. Repel evil with what is better, then between you and whom was hatred become as it were, your friend and intimate’ (41:34)

Do NOT Say 'Bad' things:

‘And the parable of an evil word is that of an evil tree; it has been torn off from its roots; it has no stability.’ (14:26)

Do NOT be 'Arrogant' or 'Carefree':

‘You shall not treat the people with arrogance, nor shall you roam the earth carefree. Allah does not love the arrogant boaster.’ (31:18)

Do NOT engage in 'ignorant' talk:

‘The servants of the Almighty are those who tread the earth in humility, and when the ignorant speak to them, they only utter ‘peace’.’ (25:63)

Do NOT make fun of others, or call them names:

‘O you who believe, let not some among you laugh at and ridicule others, for they may be better than they. Nor shall any women ridicule other women, for they may be better than they. Nor shall you defame nor be sarcastic to each other, or call each other by offensive nicknames……… Anyone who does not repent after this, are the transgressors." (49:11)

Do NOT be suspicious, or spy on one another, or backbite:

‘Avoid suspicion, for suspicion is in some cases a sin: and spy not on each other, nor speak ill of each other behind their backs, for this is as abominable as eating the flesh of your dead brother…..’ (49: 12)

Treat people equally

‘O people, We created you from a single pair, male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you despise each other). The best among you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous. Allah is All Seeing and All knowing.’ (49:13)

Therefore our humbleness, humility and modesty are the corner stones of manner we should behave: showing kindness, compassion and caring for others in the community.

Our modesty should be displayed in our words and actions that show our respect for the feelings of others. It is only then that we will reach into the sight of our Lord and Creator.

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Export Processing Zones: How to Get SEZA to Sizzle

23rd September 2020
Export Processing Zone (EPZ) factory in Kenya

In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.

It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.

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Egypt Bagged Again

23rd September 2020

… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan

With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.

Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.

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23rd September 2020

If I say the word ‘robot’ to you,  I can guess what would immediately spring to mind –  a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and  tv shows.  Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name,  Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama,  Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…

Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us  inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator,  Box in Logan’s Run,  Police robots in Elysium and  Otomo in Robocop.

And that’s to name but a few.  As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves.  And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of  robotics in the workplace.

ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.

A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles.  It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.

DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.

AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,

AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.

INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour

These examples all come from the aptly-named site    because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.

This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count!  For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars.  It’s a theory, at any rate.

Already, customers at the South-Korean  fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic.  The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners.  Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.   

‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP. 

Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions. 

Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders.  Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.

These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly  Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.

And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth.  Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.

But there may be more redundancies on the way as well.  Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable?  So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid?  Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons  may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!

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