Human Solidarity in Islam


There is no denying that Islam as the true religion of Allah was revealed to ensure the worldly and otherworldly well-being of all mankind on an equal footing.

Indeed, this religion was not intended for a certain people, race or ethnicity. The interests of all humanity as a whole are taken into consideration.

In Islam, there is no discrimination against anybody, either certain Muslims or non-Muslims. According to Prophet Mohammad (PBUH), in the sight of Allah, all people are equal and nobody may be deemed better than another except based on piety and good works. Human solidarity is such a principle which is frequently stressed in Islam.

For many people, human solidarity may mean ending poverty, achieving shared prosperity and peace, protecting the planet and fostering a life of dignity for all.

No matter how human solidarity may be defined, it is actually inherent in Islam. Nobody may deny the unprecedented input of Islam in this field. These examples show how Islam sincerely endeavored to end poverty, achieve shared prosperity and peace, protect the planet and foster a life of dignity for all.

As far as poverty is concerned, ending poverty is such a top priority of Islam. After bearing witness that there is no god but Allah and Mohammad (peace and blessing be upon him and his family) is the Messenger of Allah and pledging to observe prayer, a Muslim undertakes to end poverty by means of alms-giving (Zakat).

The third thing to be done by any Muslim after making the testimony of faith and establishing a steady connection with Allah through prayer, is to pay attention to his fellow brothers who are in need. In Islam, solidarity with fellow brothers is not less important than relationship with Allah and His Final Prophet.

Islam urges its followers to show compassion, solidarity and altruism both as an obligatory and supererogatory act of worship. There is a fixed, affordable contribution which is charged from each Muslim as Zakat for it to be given to the poor and the needy. There is unfixed, optional charity which each Muslim is recommended to give to his poor brothers.

The Quran repeatedly prompts Muslims to give in charity:

“Those who spend their wealth [in Allah’s way] by night and by day, secretly and publicly – they will have their reward with their Lord. And no fear will there be concerning them, nor will they grieve.” (Al-Baqarah 2:274)

It is quite observable that even non-Muslims have their own share in each Muslim’s contribution, given the holistic, philanthropic approach of Islam. The Quran tells us that Muslims can do good to non-Muslims:

“Allah does not forbid you from those who do not fight you because of religion and do not expel you from your homes – from being righteous toward them and acting justly toward them. Indeed, Allah loves those who act justly.” (Al-Mumtahanah 60:8)

In so far as peace is concerned, Islam is the most peaceful religion by its very name. Islam itself as a word implies peace. Islam is a variant of “salam” (“peace” in English), given the state of peace which ensues after the profession of Islam.

When a person embraces Islam, he/she has the peace of mind and this is reflected in his/her dealings with everything and everyone around him/her. A Muslim derives peace from his good relationship with Allah. Full of peace out of attachment to Allah, one of His Most Beautiful Names is “Al-Salam” (“Source of Peace” in English), a true Muslim is remarkable for his/her peacefulness when dealing with Muslims, non-Muslims, animals and even lifeless things.

Under Islam, Muslims are under an obligation to promote peace either among themselves or between themselves and non-Muslims. Islam is there only to maintain peace on earth either inside man himself or among individuals and societies.

The Quran describes the true servants of Allah as so peaceful:

“And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily, and when the ignorant address them [harshly], they say [words of] peace.” (Al-Furqan 25:63)

In the Quran, Allah tells Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) to say words of peace to the unbelievers:

“So turn aside from them and say, “Peace.” But they are going to know.” (Az-Zukhruf 43:89)

The Quran indicates that Muslims are to tend to peace if non-Muslims also tend to peace. Allahsays:

“And if they incline to peace, then incline to it [also] and rely upon Allah. Indeed, it is He who is the Hearing, the Knowing.” (Al-Anfal 8:61)

Deeply enrooted in the Islamic culture, peace has been made the Islamic greeting, namely As-Salamu-`Alaykum (“peace be upon you” or “peace be with you” in English). Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) instructed Muslims to promote peace. He said: “Spread peace among you.”

As regards the planet protection, Islam is the first religion to call for the environmental protection so that all people can lead happy existence in this world and live in love and peace. The Quran and the traditions of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) abound in many texts where Muslims are commanded to preserve environment. For example, the Quran says:

… “Eat and drink from the provision of Allah, and do not commit abuse on the earth, spreading corruption.” (Al-Baqarah 2:60)

“And do not obey the order of the transgressors, that cause corruption in the land and do not amend.” (Ash-Shu`araa’ 26:151-152)

Concerning the life of dignity, Islam guarantees life of dignity for every human being, irrespective of one’s race, nationality or ethnicity. In the Quran, Allah says:

“And We have certainly honored the children of Adam and carried them on the land and sea and provided for them of the good things and preferred them over much of what We have created, with [definite] preference. (Al-Israa’ 17:70)

Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said: “O people, your Lord is one and your father Adam is one. There is no virtue of an Arab over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab over an Arab, and neither white over black nor black over white, except through righteousness.”