Islam for Peace, Progress and Salvation

Islam is a complete system of life that provides us with guidelines based on divine commands, principles and guidance related to every aspect of our life.

Today, science and technology has helped us achieve a lot of material progress and we have been able to amass various means of convenience. But have we attained peace of mind? Do we find peace in our homes and society? There is a prevailing environment of insecurity, mistrust and chaos. Farmers are committing suicide, girls are being murdered in the womb, the poor and the weak are being oppressed, corruption and selfish motives have replaced principled ideologies in politics, women are being mistreated, the backward classes, tribals and minorities have become the target of injustice and their rights are being usurped. There is not a single place on earth that has been left unaffected by this calamity.
“Corruption has appeared throughout the land and sea because of what the hands of people have earned, so He may let them taste a part of the consequences of what they have done that perhaps they will return to righteousness.” [Qur’an 30:41]

There are some other important questions that we need to seek answers to. Who am I? What is the purpose of my existence and my life? From where have I arrived in this world and is there any other life after death? Many such questions have bewildered mankind since ages but man has been unable to arrive at straightforward, logical, acceptable and convincing replies to these questions as yet.

Not only does Islam provide convincing answers to all these questions, it also avers that the solution to all the problems that are being faced by our country and the entire world lies in the answer to these very questions. Islam equips man with high moral values and inspires him to completely dedicate himself for the sake of these values. Islam ignites a ray of hope in his heart and gives him strength and courage so that he might remain steadfast while facing the ups and downs of life. Islam organizes society in a systematic manner. It keeps him from committing evil deeds by cultivating in him a sense of accountability before Almighty God. It saves him from indulging in murder, impiety, corruption, cheating, lies, injustice and other such misdeeds. It creates a peaceful environment in the society and provides equal opportunities to everyone to progress on the basis of their merits. It clearly defines human relations and encourages us to honour these relations. The fact remains that Islam brings about a change of heart in human beings; it inspires them to excel in virtue and to abide by their limits and provides a proper system to ensure this end.

Peace, Progress and Salvation
Everyone would agree to the fact that peace and security is vital to the progress and development of mankind. Conflict, strife and war have always created roadblocks in the path of a society’s development and pushed it towards decay. Both World Wars testify to this uncomfortable truth.

While man desires and strives for peace and progress in his life, he also hopes for salvation and tries his best to attain it. Unlike popular perception, Islam has always assisted man in this quest and has been his mentor and guide. The purpose of our life, the means of achieving this objective, the goal of establishing a society based on divine principles, the standard and criteria by which deeds can be assessed, the concept of virtue and vice and the inspiration to save oneself from vice- these are those elements whose knowledge he can derive only from Islam and nowhere else. This is because Islam is the way of life that has been ordained by God and it presents a straight and clear path to peace, progress and salvation.

Islam is synonymous to Peace, Progress and Salvation
Islam is a sign of the immense compassion of the most Gracious and Merciful God who has created this universe and who has made all the resources of the heavens and the earth subservient to man. Man was instructed to surrender his entire life to God’s commandments from the very moment he was sent on earth. This submission and surrender towards God is nothing but Islam. Islam calls upon us to lead our lives in complete accordance with His commands, teachings and guidance.

Islam is widely misunderstood to be a person-centric religion. Prophet Muhammad was a messenger of God, not God incarnate. God used to reveal his messages to him; neither did he author them himself nor was he authorized to do so. Islam claims that we can never achieve real and sustainable peace, progress and salvation by discarding and turning away from divine commandments and teachings. This is the real key to man’s success and it is to this that Islam invites the entire mankind.

The intricate relation between Islam and peace can be gauged by the fact that the literal meaning of Islam happens to be Peace. The Arabic root word from which it is derived carries the following two meanings:
a.Peace: In our own existence, with other fellow men, with other creatures and with the entire universe.
b.Self-surrender: Towards God, His commands and His laws.

Thus, Islam can be defined as ‘The peace and security that is achieved by surrendering oneself to God’.

Islam is a complete system of life that provides us with guidelines based on divine commands, principles and guidance related to every aspect of our life. Be it our-
Spiritual or moral spheres
Family, marital, social and collective spheres
Personal or communal life

The Islamic concept of Peace and Progress:

Right from our birth to our death, we are bound by numerous relations. We share varying degrees of relationships with our parents and other relatives, friends, office and business colleagues, neighbours and society members and residents of our city, our country and indeed the entire world. If they are all granted their actual and natural status (something that we lack today), none of them would suffer injustice nor would their rights be usurped. This would usher in true peace and security beginning from our personal lives and extending to the entire society. It is only Islam that presents such a system of life. This system is based upon the following four principles:

1.The sovereignty of God alone would be acceptable. It is inconceivable that there would be any injustice, oppression or usurpation under His rule. The entire universe anyway accepts His sovereignty. It is only man who has turned out to be rebellious and treacherous.
“Blessed is He in whose hand is dominion, and He is over all things competent.” [Qur’an 67:1]

2.All human beings should be regarded as brothers and there should be no animosity on the basis of nationality, race, colour, class, language etc. They should all strive towards achieving their interests while recognizing and respecting the interests of others as well. It is among the core teachings of Islam that all human beings have a common parentage.
“O mankind, fear your Lord, who created you from one soul and created from it its mate and dispersed from both of them many men and women. And fear Allah, through whom you ask one another, and the wombs. Indeed Allah is ever, over you, an Observer.”
[Qur’an 4:1]

3.Establishment of a Universal Law: All human beings should rise above their narrow interests to accept a system of law that would manage everyone’s affairs uniformly and bind everyone together. Such a universal and unanimously acceptable system can be none other than the system prescribed by God.

4.Fear of accountability before God: God has made man for the sole purpose that he may worship, glorify, praise and obey Him. After our death, there would come a day when we would be raised back to life and would have to account for our deeds before Him. Saving oneself from eternal doom has always been and would continue to be the motivating factor that would persuade man to adhere to the straight path. While the most powerful governments and police forces have failed to establish peace in society, this fear of divine accountability promises to establish it quite easily.
“Every soul will taste death, and you will be given your full compensation on the Day of Resurrection. So he who is drawn away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise has attained success. As for the life of this world, it is nothing but the enjoyment of delusion.”
[Qur’an 3:185]

The points mentioned above are not some fairytales or the dreams of a philosopher; they are historical facts. When Prophet Muhammad reconstructed the Arab society that was plagued with problems similar to our own on the basis of these principles, people who were baying for each other’s blood became upholders of peace and security. People who were immersed neck-deep in tribal and communal prejudices began preaching the tenets of fraternity and brotherhood. Bloody battles dating back several decades came to an end and the world came to witness a never-before environment of peace and tranquillity.

The mesmerising spectacle of progress and development that we are witnessing all over the world and that which man is seen running after often at the expense of other fellow human beings, is a completely hollow and shallow form of progress, the edifices of which have been erected upon injustice and oppression. Statistics reveal that 50% of the world’s wealth is in the hands of a mere 1% of its population. This external glitter hides behind it the grotesque fact that a large portion of the world’s population is below the poverty line and survives on less than two square meals a day and that there still exist many classes of society that have been enslaved since thousands of years, with all doors of progress closed upon them.

Islam does not regard this as true progress. It insists that that the basic needs of all classes of society should be met at all costs, for which it holds the government accountable. The Islamic concept of progress is based upon the following three principles:

1.Not a single individual or class of society can be left deprived of pursuing its fundamental economic requirements. Islam envisions a society where not a single soul has to sleep on an empty stomach, regardless of whether anyone becomes a billionaire or not. 

2.Economic progress would not be carried out at the expense of moral values. Divine commandments and principles would not be compromised with. Islam believes that we have not been granted this life to assume the role of a money-minting machine. There is no harm in aspiring to progress on the economic front but this should not be the end-all of all our endeavours. 

3.Poverty would be eradicated from society. Progress, as per Islam, is not the economic development of a small section of society alone, with the rest of the population reeling under the curse of poverty. Islam has an exceedingly influential system of zakat that has the potential to completely eradicate poverty.

“Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Indeed, He is ever a Perpetual Forgiver. He will send rain from the sky upon you in continuing showers and give you increase in wealth and children and provide for you gardens and provide for you rivers. What is the matter with you that you do not attribute to Allah due grandeur?”
[Qur’an 71:10-13]

The Islamic concept of salvation is not freedom from karma or the cycles of life and death. Nor does it speak of any reunion of one’s soul with the Supreme Being. Salvation, as per Islam, is our entry into a new phase of our life where there is only bliss, where every wish and desire would meet fulfilment, where there is neither toil nor sorrow, where everything is permanent and eternal, where there is no communal struggle, no oppression, where there is an incessant shower of the mercy of our Compassionate Lord and where we would finally meet God in person. It is the attainment of this state that Islam regards as true success, salvation and triumph.

Islam teaches us that our life does not end at our death; rather, it is continues forever. The success of this eternal life is hinged upon one’s success in the divine court where we would be held accountable for all our deeds. Losing that ‘court case’ would translate into an eternal loss- a loss that leads to infernal punishments in Hell. Islam tells us that we need to strive in this world- in our present life- in order to qualify for that eternal success. This life on earth is a test, an examination, in which we are expected to lead our lives in accordance with divine commandments and guidelines.
“He who created death and life to test you as to which of you is best in deed - and He is the Exalted in Might, the Forgiving.”
[Qur’an 67:2]

If we act righteously, God promises us that He would allow us to lead a happy life in this world and grant us entry into a Paradise that would never end. This is the true success that Islam calls upon everyone to strive for. God says:
“Say: O My servants who have transgressed against themselves (by sinning), do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.”
[Qur’an 39:53]

It has hardly been a few centuries when Islam had established a society based on these very principles of peace, progress and salvation in the Arabian Peninsula. And it has all the potential to re-establish such an egalitarian society. This is not a mythical tale, but a historical fact backed up with sound empirical and scientific data. Having exhausted all attempts at establishing peace and social equality without meeting with any tangible success, it is now time we give these Islamic principles a well-deserved opportunity so that the prevalent discontent and strife might come to an end, allowing all human beings to lead peaceful lives on God’s earth.

Dear brothers and sisters, we humbly request you to study Islam with an open heart. You would notice that it is nothing but our own inner voice speaking to us and it would certainly dawn upon you that there can be no other path to peace and salvation. “Surely, in the remembrance of God do hearts find satisfaction.” [Qur’an 13:28]

We all wish to attain peace and salvation. Come, let us take a step forward towards our quest for the truth. To know more about Islam, kindly call us on our Toll-free number 1800-2000-787

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