Islamic teachings on communal harmony
Islam is a religion of peace which is based on the teachings of the Holy Quran and the Sunnah of our Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him). It teaches the humanity equity and is not confined to favor merely the Muslims, rather allows all to follow their respective religions. Islam gives the people in the world the right to be respected with no discrimination.
Our Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) says, "O People! Indeed your Lord is same; you are all the offspring of the same father (Adam); neither an Arab has any priority over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab is superior to an Arab; Being white or black in skin earns you no privilege; in the eyes of your Lord the best among you is the one who fears Him most."
Islam as a religion has been acclaimed even by the non-Muslim thinkers, researchers and philosophers as there is no place in Islam for racial discrimination. The teachings of our ProphetHazrat Muhammad (pbuh) show that in every respect Islam plays a very significant role to uphold communal harmony amid the people of all religions.
Our Prophet never showed any hatred towards the non-Muslims, rather he promoted the culture of love and sympathy to all human beings beyond their caste and creeds. Even, he would accept the gifts sent by the non-Muslims. Hazrat Anas (r) says, "A Jew once invited the Holy Prophet for a meal which the Prophet accepted."
Our Prophet possessed the highest moral excellence. He was not only trustworthy amid the people of his own community but also the people of other religions. He was called 'Al-Ameen' for his probity and reliability. Even in the face of extreme threats to his life he remained trustworthy. He was the greatest teachers sent by Allah as a blessing for the whole mankind. His teachings give a complete roadmap for the mankind to lead blissful life and encourages the people of all religions to coexist harmoniously.
Again, the Holy Quran states that Islamic social culture avails the humanitythe basic necessities of love, tolerance, brotherhood and peace. It also ensures human beings all the rights to live peacefully in the world whether they belong to Islam or other religions. The Holy Quran says, "The rights of a neighbor are incumbent upon every Muslim, though the neighbor be a Muslim or not."
However, it is alarming that the present world is ridden with religious and racial conflicts. Communal disharmony is so pervasive across the globe. In the guise of communalism people are being misguided. Thus people of one religion are attacking the people belonging other religions. Sometimes we see that political and religious issues are mingled and the political leaders in the world are taking advantages using religious sentiments in the politics. People are divided in the name of religion and culture. But what is the supreme teaching of every religion? Certainly, the philosophy of every religion is based on peace and harmony.
Bangladesh is such a country where the people of every religion including Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and Christians have their peaceful co-existence. But over some years communal harmony is being questioned when a group of miscreants are trying to make every scope so that communal harmony is in crisis and the people with different faiths are involved in religious conflicts.
Recently, a news has got viral that the Holy Quran was kept on the foot of idol at a temple in Cumilla. The Muslims roared across the country for demeaning the Holy Quran. In the guise of religious issue miscreants attacked and vandalized some temples across the country.
With this issue the political parties are smelling the rat to one another. However, the question is pertinent to raise; does Islam allow attacking people and vandalizing their property? Certainly, not. In many cases people are given misconceptions by fake Islamic parsons about Islam and the teachings of our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
The Islamic history states that in the era of Muslim Caliphs, the people of other religions had enjoyed the same status, protection and safety as the Muslims had and justice was all equal between them and the Muslims. It is evident in the Meesaq-e-medina (The Constitution of Medina) that the Jews in the Medina would be granted religious freedom and the properties of the non-Muslims would be to their ownpossession. Nobody would force the non-Muslims to convert to Islam.
Islam does not allow the practice of racialism, colonialism and terrorism. Not only Islam, the main motto of every religion is to bring peace for mankind. But why we are involved in communal conflicts? Can we not think that serving humanity is the key to the teachings of all religions?
Truly, cultivating tolerance, avoiding conflicts and living in harmony with people of other faiths is the teachings of Islam. It is very urgent to enlighten us with the supreme knowledge of Islam and the teachings of our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). To maintain peace and stability,it is the responsibility of every Muslim to be kind to all faiths. But it is regretted that due to sufficient knowledge of Islam misconceptions pervade in the society.
Our Holy Quran and the Sunnah of our Prophet (pbuh) should be the only means to lead our everyday life. Muslims should be rational, not blind to performing their religious life and only then the communal harmony would be established andMuslims would enjoy the supreme honor in the world.
The writer is a teacher
at Prime University and also a
research scholar at the IBS