The religion of Islam is much more than worships and prayers. It is a religion which dictates the personal, social as well as professional lives of its believers. Contrary to the popular belief, Islam is a religion which teaches peace, justice, and equality in all aspects of lives.
Peace is the essence of Islam. The root word of the term “Islam” is “salaam” which means “peace.” The blessed religion requires all its followers to be peaceful at all times and in all situations. Even if someone speaks rudely to a Muslim, he is instructed not to respond in a similar manner. In Holy Qur’an, Allah says about believers:
“When they hear ill speech, they turn away from it and say: For us are our deeds, and for you are your deeds. Peace be upon you, we seek not the way of ignorance.” [Qur’an 28:55]
Very often, people believe Muslims to be a war people. Islam, however, encourages peace. In war situations, too, Muslims are advised to adopt peace whenever possible. Following verse of Qur’an says it all:
“So if they remove themselves from you and do not fight you and offer you peace, then Allah has not made for you a cause for fighting against them.” [Qur’an 4:90]
This verse states that if the enemy backs out of a fight and offers peaceful terms, Muslims should not fight them and should resort to peace.
No society can prosper without justice. Islam stresses the importance of justice. Whether it is a household situation or a matter of society, Muslims must remain just and fair. In Qur’an, Allah says:
“Verily, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and He forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.” [Qur’an 16:90]
The believer must be firm and not favor anyone who is at fault even if it is an influential individual or one whom they love. Also, one is not allowed to abstain from giving testimony to save a culprit.
“O you who believe, be persistently standing firm in justice as witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives. Whether one is rich or poor, Allah is more worthy of both. So do not follow desires, lest you not be just. If you distort your testimony or refuse to give it, then verily, Allah is aware of what you do.” [Qur’an 4:135]
Islam does not ask to be fair only in social issues but also in one’s personal issues. One should be impartial and neutral in all the matters. Prophet of Allah (P.B.U.H) said:
“Verily, those who were fair will be in the presence of Allah upon pulpits of light, near the right hand of the Merciful, the Exalted, and both of His sides are equally honorable. They are those who practiced justice in their rulings and with their families and in all that they did.” [Muslim]
Everyone, regardless of the status, race, and ethnicity, is equal in Islam. The most significant examples of this equality can be seen in the modes of worship such as salah, which when prayed in congregation, dismisses all the differences and asks the worshippers to stand shoulder-to-shoulder, and during hajj, when all the believers wear the same kind of very simple apparel and move together. Islam’s message is that of universal brotherhood.
Allah (SWT) says:
“O mankind, indeed, We have created you from male and female, and have made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Indeed the most honored of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.” [Qur’an 49:13] These are the true teachings upon which the religion is based. No Muslim can be considered righteous unless he is just, fair, peaceful, and advocates equality.