Rasūl Allāh ﷺ warned us against envy and encouraged us to be true believers. True īmān cannot reside in the same heart as hasad (envy).
When we are envious of a person, we object to Allāh’s choice in bestowing his favour on that person. A poet says in Arabic,
“Say to one who has remained envious of me, do you know who you have been insolent towards? You have been insolent to Allāh in His judgement for you have not been content with what Allāh has granted me.”
As the poet articulates, when we glow green in envy and seethe in indignation questioning and objecting to what someone else has, who do we object to? We object to Allāh. Why did Allāh give this thing to him? There is arrogance and a sense of self-entitlement. We think that he does not deserve it, I deserve it.
Who are we to judge what Allāh gives to someone? Envy is illogical. It is purely emotional and animalistic behaviour. It has no positive outcome. Neither for the victim nor the perpetrator. This is why Allāh and His Rasūl Allāh have warned us against it.
[This excerpt is based on a talk entitled ‘Envy: The Inferno Within Part 2’ delivered by Shaykh Riyadh ul Haq on February 28th February 2020]