Allah, the Sublime, said:
"That home of the Hereafter (i.e. Paradise), We shall assign to those who desire not high-handedness or mischief in the land. And the good end is for the Muttaqun (pious)." [Al-Qur'an 28:83]
Allah, the Exalted, has made the home of the Hereafter in this verse for the one who does not seek high handedness upon the earth, due to showing off, fame, and ostentation - and this is one of the indications of humility - and for the one who does not desire mischief and corruption.
Seeking elevation can occur in a number of different contexts such as in the various corrupt disciplines (of knowledge), position or rank, love of leadership and power. It can also occur in the matters of the religion, such as loving to be foremost in the gatherings, and competing in answering the questioners, even if someone who is equal to him or better than him is present.
And perhaps this elevation might even turn into envy, jealousy, the hatred of some of the callers to Allah of one another and the dislike of showing benevolent conduct towards each other.
Allah, the Exalted, said:
"Neither those who disbelieve among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) nor al-Mushrikun (the disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah, idolaters, polytheists, pagans, etc.) like that there should be sent down unto you any good from your Lord. But Allah chooses for His Mercy whom He wills. And Allah is the Owner of Great Bounty." [Al-Qur'an 2:105]
One of the things that grieves the disbelievers is that good things should befall the Muslims, this is a characteristic amongst the characteristics of the disbelievers. Therefore, let the Muslim beware of letting his heart being mixed with the likes of these vile feelings and sensations.
Shaukh ul-Islam ibn Taymiyyah, rahimahullah, said, in explaining the above verse [of Surah al-Qasas]: " ... For people are of four types. The first type: They desire elevation over the people and corruption in the earth, and this is disobedience to Allah. Such mischief-making kings and leaders are like Pharoah and his party, and they are the worst of all of creation. The second type: Those who desire corruption without elevation, such as the thieves and criminals from the riff-raff amongst the people. The third type: Those who desire elevation without corruption, such as those who have the din, they desire to elevate themselves by it over other than them amongst the people. And as for the fourth type: They are the people of Paradise, those who seek neither elevation in the earth and nor corruption - along with the fact that they are (indeed) much higher than those besides them." [Majmu' al-Fatawa vol. 18, with some abridgement]
(s) The Book of Humility
(t) Abu 'Iyaad
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