The #1 quality that I have always admired in the companions of the Prophet ﷺ is the utmost humility. We will see examples from the companion’s lives where they exhibited this quality.
Whoever does his own chores is not arrogant. Abu Huraira reported: The messenger of Allah ﷺ said. “He is not arrogant who eats with his servants, rides a donkey in the market, tends to his sheep and milks them.”
The Prophet of Allah ﷺ did his own chores in his house. SubhanAllah, the best of creation, the most beloved of Allah. Who are we?
Umar ibn Al-Khattab
Once a messenger from a Persian king came to give a message to ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattab (ra), requesting a visit to the palace of the king. To this, a Muslim responded by saying that they did not have a palace or a king. He told the Persian ambassador that they have an “amir ul mu’mineen”. The both went looking for ‘Umar (ra) and they found him sleeping under a tree. What a sight that must have been and what an expression that Persian ambassador must have had on his face! It is hard to imagine Muslim leaders or country heads living like this in today’s world.
He (ra) would help young orphan girls milk their sheep and he did so consistently even after he became a caliph.
Whoever humbles himself for the sake of Allah, Allah raises them in the eyes of the people.
Umar ibn al-Khattab reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, ordered us to give charity and at the time I had some wealth. I said to myself, “Today I will outdo Abu Bakr, if ever there were a day to outdo him.” I went with half of my wealth to the Prophet and he said, “What have you left for your family?” I said, “The same amount.” Then, Abu Bakr came with everything he had. The Prophet said, “O Abu Bakr, what have you left for your family?” Abu Bakr said, “Allah and his messenger.” I said, “By Allah, I will never do better than Abu Bakr.”
The sahaba competed in doing good deeds and wanted to outdo each other. In today’s day and age, comparison and competition is only in matters pertaining to this dunya. This has become the new norm unfortunately. Social media makes this problem even worse where people often mindlessly spend energy tracking the material lives of people that they may barely know. The sahaba had the big picture mindset of building for the aakhirah. Our mindset and thinking revolves around this dunya.
SEEKING KNOWLEDGE AND IMPLEMENTING
We know a lot of things today only because of the curiosity of the sahabah. They not only asked these questions in a very humble and respectable manner genuinely seeking to learn but they also made it a priority to implement the knowledge they gained. Learning is incomplete without action and actions can be deviated without proper knowledge/learning. They go hand in hand. We can learn a lot from just the way they questioned the Prophet ﷺ.