Page 93 - Islam In Focus

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is enjoined to share the common responsibilities. When people realize that they all
belong to Adam and Eve and that these were the creation of God, there will be no
room for racial prejudice or social injustice or second class citizenship. People will be
united in their social behavior as they are united in nature by the bond of common
parentage. In Qur’ an and the Traditions of Muhammad there is a constant reminder of
this important fact, the unity of humanity by nature and origin. This is to eliminate
racial pride and claims to national or ethnic superiority, and pave the way for genuine
brotherhood (Qur’ an, 4:1; 7:189; 49:10-13)
The unity of humanity is not only in its origin but also in its ultimate aims. According
to Islam, the final goal of humanity is God. From Him we come, for Him we live and
to Him we shall all return. In fact, the sole purpose of creation as described by Qur’ an
is to worship God and serve His cause, the cause of truth and justice, of love and
mercy, of brotherhood and morality (Quran, 51:56-58)
On this unity of origin and ultimate goal as the background of the social life in Islam,
the relations between the individual and society are based. The role of the individual
is complementary to that of society. Between the two there are social solidarity and
mutual responsibility. The individual is responsible for the common welfare and
prosperity of his society. This responsibility is not only to the society but also to God.
In this way the individual works with a sound social-mindedness and genuine feeling
of inescapable responsibility. It is his role to do the utmost for his society and
contribute to its common welfare. On the other hand, the society is also responsible to
God for the welfare of the individual. When the individual is able he is the contributor
and society is the beneficiary. In return he is entitled to security and care, should he
become disabled. In this case he is the beneficiary and society is the contributor. So
duties and rights correspond harmoniously. Responsibility and concern are mutual.
There is no state to dominate the individual and abrogate his personal entity.
Likewise, there is no individual or class of individuals to exploit the society and
corrupt the state. There is harmony with peace and mutual security. There is a
constructive interaction between the individual and society
Besides the unity of humanity in origin and ultimate goal, and besides this mutual
responsibility and concern, the social life of Islam is characterized by cooperation in
goodness and piety. It is marked with full recognition of the individual and his sacred
rights to life, property and honor. It is also marked with an effective role played by the
individual in the domain of social morals and ethics. In an Islamic society the
individual cannot be indifferent. He is enjoined to play an active part in the
establishment of sound social morals by way of inviting to the good and combating
the evil in any form with all lawful means at his disposal. In so doing, not only does
he shun evil and do good but also helps others to do the same. The individual who
feels indifferent to his society is a selfish sinner; his morals are in trouble, his
conscience is in disorder, and his faith is undernourished
The structure of social life in Islam is very lofty, sound and comprehensive. Among
the substantial elements of this structure are sincere love for one’ s fellow human
beings, mercy for the young, respect for the elders, comfort and consolation for the
distressed, visiting the sick, relieving the grieved, genuine feelings of brotherhood and
social solidarity; respect for the rights of other people to life, property, and honor;