Servitude to Allah the Almighty is first of all an act of consciousness. Servitude means to be able to see our weak state before the Divine Kingdom and to know our place. When a person properly recognizes his place, there would be no strength left in him to claim arrogance, egoism and even his very own existence.
The real modesty makes the servant confess his nothingness and nonexistence before the Divine Majesty and bow his head, like in the following supplication of Mawlānā Jalal al-Dīn Rumī (Alaihi Al Rahma):
“I have become a servant, I have become a servant, I have become a servant. I, humble servant, have ashamed of not fulfilling my servitude properly and bowed my head down (in shame). Every slave becomes happy when he is emancipated. Dear Lord! I have become happy for being Your slave.”
As a matter of fact, Holy Prophet’s (peace and blessings be upon him) grandson Hazrat Hasan’s (May Allah be pleased with him) supplication after circumambulating the Kaaba and performing two rak’ahs of prayer at the quarter of Ibrāhīm (Upon him be prayer and peace) is one of the best examples of manners of servitude:
“Dear Lord! Your little and weak servant came to Your door. O Allah! Your weak servant came to your door. Dear Lord! Your beggar came to your door, Your poor came to Your door…”
After this touching supplication, Hasan (May Allah be pleased with him) met on his way with some poor people, who were sharing a dry piece of bread. He greeted them, and they invited him to their modest table. Prophet’s grandson Hasan (May Allah be pleased with him) sat with them and said:
“If I knew that this bread did not come from charity, I would eat with you.” Then he said:
“Let’s go to my home.” After serving them a nice meal, he clothed the poor people with nice clothes and gave them considerable amount of money and then sent them back in a very happy state.” (Abshihī, Al-Mustatraf, Beirut, 1986, I, 31)
This is the state of real modesty and an eminent manner of servitude, which makes a believer live in deep sensitivity towards his Lord and Creation. Those who adorn their souls with this exclusive manners act prudently in their acts and behaviors. This manner manifests itself in their sitting, standing, walking, choosing their clothes, speaking, walking, and, in short, in all of their actions.
Allah the Almighty states:
“And the servants of the Beneficent Allah are they who walk on the earth in humbleness, and when the ignorant address them, they say: Peace.” (25; 63)
“And do not go about in the land exultingly, for you cannot cut through the earth nor reach the mountains in height.” (17; 37)
“And do not turn your face away from people in contempt, nor go about in the land exulting over much; surely Allah does not love any self-conceited boaster;” (31; 18)
In these verses, walking arrogantly and swaggering is clearly prohibited. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) always walked fast and his eyes fixed on the ground like going down a hill. This was a manifestation of his humility. In fact, this good behavior has become one of the principles of the Sufis, in which they referred to as “nazar ber qadem – one’s eyes fixed on his feet.”