|How do you encourage someone who has experienced a tragedy?|
لَتُبْلَوُنَّ فِي أَمْوَالِكُمْ وَأَنفُسِكُمْ وَلَتَسْمَعُنَّ مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُواْ أَذًى كَثِيرًا وَإِن تَصْبِرُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ ذَلِكَ مِنْ عَزْمِ الأُمُورِ (سورۃ آل عمران, آيۃ 186)
You will certainly be tested, through your money and your lives, and you will hear from those who received the scripture, and from the idol worshipers, a lot of insult. If you steadfastly persevere and lead a righteous life, this will prove the strength of your faith. (Surah, Ali Imran, Verse 186)
Ranin, a sixth-grade pupil, comes to school every day with new clothes, new shoes and a purse full of money. She is attractive, well-groomed and keeps herself aloof from her classmates. They, in turn, tend to keep away from her. One day the teacher came into class and found Ranin sitting alone looking very sad, and the pupils whispering, "she deserves it. Now she'll feel what we felt."
Explanation: Children are like this; they can't hide their malicious joy. Especially, as in this case, that Ranin used to mock her poorer classmates. The teacher did the right thing by not mentioning this to Ranin and by being warm and supportive to her. To say to Ranin, "you deserve it" or "now you will suffer like we suffered" are statements of revenge that are of no help to anyone. Even to reprimand the pupils for poking fun at Ranin would not be beneficial. On the contrary: the teacher's supportive reaction teaches the pupils to be more humble. Life is a wheel and even those on the bottom, as Ranin is now, can learn and advance and attain success. But the teacher went beyond this. She gave Ranin and the pupils a gift, a most important verse from the Quran which talks about the need to be strong and to persevere even in the most trying times, and that even when everyone is making fun of you, you should continue to toil and to hope for a better future.