There is no superiority of an Arab over non-Arab; white over black; black over white; except in terms of piety: Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)
Human beings are connected by different kinds of relationships all of which carry some weight and they greatly impact our day-to-day lives. Some people have high status compared to others. This difference of status within human beings could lead us at the draggers dawn. In present day modern society, removing evil barriers of social class is a herculean task but if we turn towards Islam, the social class problem don’t exist at all.
In Islam, the only criteria upon which a person is or will be adjudged superior to other is the measures of his/her Taqwa which means piety, righteouness etc. Allah says in Surah Hujrat: “O humankind! We have created you from the single pair of male and female and have divided into nations and tribes so that you may recognize each other and not that you despise each other. And verily the most honoured amongst you in the sight of Allah is the one who has Taqwa.”
Similarly, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) says: “O people verily your Lord is One and your father (Adam) is one. There is no superiority of an Arab over non-Arab; white over black nor black over white except in terms of piety,” (Musanad Ahmad, 22391; and Silsilatul Saheeh, 2700).
Tribes, races and nations are convenient labels by which we may know certain different characteristics. However, before Allah, they are all one and the righteous ones get more honour. Global human society is trying to attain it but they are failing miserably because they are not following the straight path that will lead them there.
Pride, boasting and vainglory based on ancestry, lineage, caste, status etc has been clearly condemned in Islam. The difference in social stratum has created mess and unfortunately it seems to be the music to ones who are boastful of their lineage or high status. It is nothing but sheer arrogance and arrogance is a blameworthy character of Satan and its cohorts. The first one who showed arrogance towards Allah and His creation was Satan.
One of the social evils which we presently are facing is the issue of marriage. There are many families in Kashmir who only marry their children within their own sects, social status, casts or families. The concept of marrying in ones’ own social status or class have created a mess for many families in Kashmir. The issue needs to be tackled on priority basis by the Islamic scholars of Kashmir.
Allah says in Sura Nissa: “O mankind! Fear your Guardian Lord Who created you from a single person, created out off it his mate and from them twain scattered countless men and women. Fear Allah through Whom you demand mutual rights and be heedful of the wombs that bore you: for Allah ever watches over you.” All our mutual rights and duties are referred to Allah. We all are His creatures and He wants His creatures to do justice but at the same time we must protect our own brotherhood and faith from insult etc. Those who follow their own dictum and are boastful of their class are in reality disdainful crew of Satan.
From the mere physical regulation in Islam, we are also lifted up into the sphere of social welfare, morals and faith; for the one acts and reacts on the other. If we are constantly carping at wholesome regulations, we shall do nothing but cause divisions and schisms among the people and ordered society would tend to break up.
Allah says in Sura Al Baqara: “It is not (the only) righteousness that you turn your faces towards east or west; but the righteousness is to believe in Allah and the last day, and the angels and the book and the messengers; to spend of your sustenance out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer; for those who ask and for the ransom of slave.”
Society based on justice, and equality and fraternity which was established first time in human history of human race was at the time of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). The same society can be re-established only if the condition of the commandments of Allah and His Apostle the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) are fulfilled.
Author is pursuing Master of Arts, Islamic Studies, University of Kashmir (UOK)