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Islam and Spiritualism ( 19 Nov 2014, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Virtue, Righteousness, Piety and Cooperation in Islam


Islam for Christians

20 November, 2014

In the Qur’an, Allah says:

Help one another in Al-Birr and At-Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety)(Al-Ma’idah 5:2)

Allah has created the human being as a weak being who needs to cooperate continuously with his fellow human beings throughout his life. This is clear in the worldly affairs; man needs someone to sow for him and harvest for him, and he needs someone to make tools, market goods, and buy things. To sum up, people cannot live unless they cooperate with one another.

Muslims need one another with regard to both worldly and religious affairs. Hence, cooperation among Muslims is something important that Allah has enjoined and made it the basis for religious and worldly well-being. If Muslims achieve this cooperation, they will be a strong, integrated structure, and a single body or a building. All of that confirms that cooperation and mutual support among them is something essential. That includes many aspects in the lives of Muslims, which are summed up in the words birr (righteousness) and Taqwa (piety), as Allah says:

Help one another in Al-Birr and At-Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is Severe in punishment (Al-Ma’idah 5:2)

These are two words that sum up all the attributes of goodness, such as belief, conduct, rulings and so on. The verses of the Qur’an and the Hadith of the Prophet state that Islamic solidarity among Muslims – individuals, societies, governments and peoples – is one of the most imperative of ideas, and one of the duties which are essential to the welfare of society, the well-being of their religious affairs and the soundness of their interactions and to unite them against their common foe.

Islamic solidarity means helping one another, standing shoulder to shoulder, supporting and advising one another. That includes enjoining what is good, forbidding what is evil, calling others to Allah, and guiding people to that which will lead to their happiness and salvation, in this world and the Hereafter.

Islamic solidarity also includes teaching the ignorant, helping the destitute, supporting the one who is wronged, stopping the wrongdoer from wronging others, establishing the law of Allah, maintaining security, stopping miscreants and mischief-makers, protecting roads, providing means of transportation by land, sea and air, and providing means of communication, both land-based and wireless, so that their common worldly and religious interests may be achieved, and so as to facilitate cooperation between people in everything that may protect the truth, establish justice and spread peace and security in all regions.

Mutual support also includes reconciling between people, resolving conflicts between them and fighting the offending party until it complies with the command of Allah, in accordance with the words of Allah:

So fear Allah and adjust all matters of difference among you (Al-Anfal 8:1)

And if two parties (or groups) among the believers fall to fighting, then make peace between them both. But if one of them outrages against the other, then fight you (all) against the one that which outrages till it complies with the Command of Allah. Then if it complies, then make reconciliation between them justly, and be equitable. Verily, Allah loves those who are the equitable. The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic). So make reconciliation between your brothers, and fear Allah, that you may receive mercy (Al-Hujurat49:9-10)

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “The relationship between one believer and another is like a structure, parts of which support other parts,” and he interlaced his fingers. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

And he said: “The likeness of the believers in their mutual love, mercy and compassion is that of the body; if one part of it complains, the rest of the body joins it in staying awake and suffering fever.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

These Hadiths and others clearly indicate that mutual support, compassion and care among Muslims, and cooperation in doing good are obligatory. Likening them to a single structure or a single body indicates that by supporting and helping one another and showing compassion to one another, they will become united and integrated, and they will be saved from the evil of their enemies.

In the Qur’an, Allah says:

Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islam), enjoining Al-Ma‘roof (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar (polytheism and disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden). And it is they who are the successful. (Aal `Imran 3:104)

Prophet Muhammad called this Ummah (community) to affirm the Oneness of its Lord (Tawheed), hold fast to His rope, unite in truth, form a single rank against the common enemy, achieve its interests and serve its just causes, in accordance with the commands of Allah:

Invite (mankind, O Muhammad) to the way of your Lord (i.e. Islam) with wisdom (i.e. with the Divine Revelation and the Qur’an) and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better (An-Nahl 16:125)

This may all be summed up by noting that it is essential for Muslims to cooperate in righteousness and piety, and the Muslims must do all that they can in order to achieve this cooperation, such as founding charitable organizations, Da’wah centres, Qur’an study circles, and so on, which will help to unite and organize their efforts.

Muslims must help one another and devote their energy and wealth to establish true cooperation in righteousness and piety. A Muslim should not fail to offer something to his brothers and help them with what they need in worldly or religious terms.

Therefore, dear Muslims! Always unite yourselves and know that your Lord [Allah] is one. Do not harbour one another any grudge, and always suppress your anger by remembering that Allah always loves servants that are patients.

In the Qur’an, Allah says:

Be quick in the race for forgiveness from your Lord, and for a Garden whose width is that (of the whole) of the heavens and of the earth, prepared for the righteous. Those who spend (freely), whether in prosperity, or in adversity; who restrain anger, and pardon (all) men; – for Allah loves those who do well. (Aal `Imran 3:133-134]