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the Message Continues ... 10/85



Newsletter for September 2008



Article 1 - Article 2 - Article 3 - Article 4 - Article 5 - Article 6 - Article 7 - Article 8 - Article 9 - Article 10 - Article 11 - Article 12


by Ayub Hamid

Islam is a religion of peace. As peace is neither possible nor sustainable
unless it is based on equality, balance and justice, Islam emphasizes that
Muslims must be standard bearers for justice. In fact Qur’an describes that
Allah sent messengers with His guidance and taught them maintenance of
balance in order to enable people to practice justice in their societies:

"Certainly We sent Our messengers with clear signs, and sent down with them
the Book and the balance so that people may conduct themselves according to
Qist (equality, balance and justice)." 57:25

Standing up for and upholding Qist (equality, balance and justice) must
transcend one’s likes or dislikes and must not be impacted by one’s love or

O believers, be determined practitioners of Qist as witnesses for Allah's
sake, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, or near
relatives; whether it concerns rich or poor, Allah is more considerate of
both of them. Therefore do not follow a passion or desire lest you lose the
balance. And if you distort it or disregard it, then surely Allah is well-
aware of what you do. 4:135
O believers, persistently stand up for Allah as witnesses for Qist, and do
not let the hatred of any people prevent you from being just. Be just; that
is more congruent with God consciousness. Maintain consciousness of Allah;
Allah is well aware of what you do. 5:8

Muslims are commanded to practice justice and maintain balance, moderation
and equilibrium in the society both individually and collectively in their
personal dealings, as well as in the public affairs of their society:

Verily, Allah commands ‘Adl (fairness, justice, balance, equity), Ihsan
(excellence in servitude to Allah, benevolence towards people, graciousness
in dealings) and giving to those close to you, while He forbids Fahshaa
(lewdness, indecency, licentiousness, immorality), Munkar (bad actions,
undesirable activities, unacceptable behaviour), and Baghy (rebellion,
transgressing limits, exploiting or violating others’ rights, abuse of
authority or freedom). He admonishes you so that you heed the advice. 16:90

Thus Muslims are personally accountable to Allah to be balanced, equitable
and just in their individual dealings, interactions and consumption of
resources. In addition, they will also be held accountable for playing
their part in ensuring that the society they live in collectively abides by
and upholds justice and equality for everyone in the society as well as
balance and equilibrium in its relationship with the surrounding
environment including animals and ecosystems.

This responsibility of collective justice and balance assumes an even
greater importance in a democratic society. Theoretically, a democratic
society is governed according to the will of its people. Hence, every
citizen of a democratic society is responsible for ensuring that whatever
their government does is fair, just and balanced.

In addition to justice, Muslims are commanded to excel, to be gracious and
magnanimous in their dealings, forgiving and benevolent to people and doing
more than they are obligated. This should be done individually and
collectively as a society. There are many civil society organizations which
may provide an opportunity to excel in service of humanity. We should work
with such organizations according to the following Islamic principle:

"Cooperate with each other in righteousness and piety, but do not cooperate
in sin and aggression." 5:2

Muslims are also obligated to develop a social environment where goodness
flourishes and evil is discouraged.

These responsibilities can be fulfilled only if everyone fully participates
in the democratic process.

courtesy: The Canadian Islamic Congress online Friday







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