Strengthen Our Unity, Avoid Division

Islam is the religion of Allah. It is a religion that is sound and thriving. Muslims that cling firmly upon pure Islamic ‘aqeedah and diligently abide by its teachings will become an ummah that is united, potent, and exceptional.

Lately, Muslims seem to have become weaker and weaker in various aspects of life within the nation’s current state of development.

What are its causes? The answer is the division, disputes, and enmity towards each other. In the end, the spirit of unity starts to wane. While on the other hand, unity amongst Muslims is truly vital and that it must be preserved for the sake of the future of the Muslims themselves. Allah mentions in verse 103 of Surah Ali-‘Imran (which means):

“And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided….” [Al-Quran, surah Ali-‘Imran, verse 103].

Verily, unity is the very foundation for the development of a nation. On the flipside, disunity, disputes, and enmity will lead to ruin and destruction. In this regard, Allah has reminded us to prioritize upon unity for the sake of the strength of the ummah, as mentioned in verse 46 of Surah al-Anfal (which means):

“And obey Allah and His Messenger, and do not dispute and [thus] lose courage and [then] your strength would depart; and be patient. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.” [Al-Quran, surah al-Anfal, verse 46].

Divisions amongst the Muslims that are occurring in recent times are truly prevalent. Disputes and disagreements are occurring openly all over the place including the social media and mainstream media. This quarreling transcends all aspects that even the most trivial of things would become a source of dissension, later causing disunity.

This phenomenon of disunity even gets uglier when there are those that would even insult and vilify their own ethnicity openly and at will, no holds barred, and without shame.

Allah had firmly stated that the culture of condemning, jeering, and insulting others that could actually harm others is actually a major sin in the sight of Allah. Allah mentions in verse 58 of surah al-Ahzab (which means):

“And those who harm believing men and believing women for [something] other than what they have earned have certainly born upon themselves a slander and manifest sin.” [Al-Quran, surah al-Ahzab, verse 58].

Islam always implores upon its adherents to be loving, having good thoughts of others, aiding one another, remain united, being tolerant, and always ready to forgive one another. On the contrary, these noble values are to be internalized for they are likened to our bodily limbs, where they would always mutually need one another. Narrated an-Nu‘maan bin Basheer, Rasulullah said (which means):

“You see the believers as regards their being merciful among themselves and showing love among themselves and being kind, resembling one body, so that, if any part of the body is not well then the whole body shares the sleeplessness (insomnia) and fever with it.” [Narrated by al-Bukhari]

However, the reality nowadays is that these noble values are not given due attention. These values should be embedded within every Muslims at all levels.

These noble values should make us an ummah that is penitent, always improving ourselves, avoiding division and disputes, advising one another, and always firmly clinging onto pure unadulterated Islamic teachings. Allah mentions in verse 146 of Surah an-Nisa’ (which means):

“Except for those who repent, correct themselves, hold fast to Allah, and are sincere in their religion for Allah, for those will be with the believers. And Allah is going to give the believers a great reward.” [Al-Quran, surah an-Nisa’, verse 146].

Considering the current state regarding disunity, the Muslim ummah is called upon to unite and aid one another, thus strengthening the unity and avoiding division. This can be achieved by building good relationships at every level of society. Allah mentions in verse 10 of surah al-Hujurat:

“The believers are but brothers, so make settlement between your brothers. And fear Allah that you may receive mercy.” [Al-Quran, surah al-Hujurat, verse 10].

The unity of the Muslim ummah can be further solidified by having the attitude of positive thinking, sound cooperation, mutual understanding of one another, avoiding acts of revenge and treachery, as well as selfishness.

Let us take valuable lessons from the history of the Malay Sultanate of Malacca (Melaka). The kingdom of Malacca was once famous with its glory as of the center of commerce, the center of economic development, as well as the center for the spread of Islam, far and wide. However, it all came crashing down to external forces due to elements of betrayal, jealousy, greed, division, and power struggle within the administration of the Malaccan  (Melaka) government at the time.

Therefore, let us altogether initiate the efforts by closing ranks, solidly unite, overlook all the disputes and misunderstanding, and strive to rise again as a glorious ummah, dignified and purposeful, for the sake of our religion, citizens, and nation. Allah mentions in verse 3 of surah as-Saff:

“Great is hatred in the sight of Allah that you say what you do not do.” [Al-Quran, surah as-Saff, verse 3].

To end this topic, let us truly ponder upon its message by deriving the following lessons as guidance in our lives:

  1. The Muslim Ummah must have certainty that the obligation of living in unity is a command of Allah.
  2. The Muslim Ummah must truly realize that division within the ummah actually goes against the command of Allah that will incur great loss upon the ummah.
  3. The Muslim Ummah must preserve its unity, which will ensure the progression of the Muslim ummah within this nation.
  4. The Muslim Ummah must stop all at once all of the wrongdoings and vile acts such as envy, grudge, betrayal, defamation, and cursing other Muslims, which would only cause the destruction upon the ummah.

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Author: Abu Tariq Abu Tariq Muhsin is a zakat officer for Zakat Centre of Federal Territory of Malaysia. A writer, researcher and publisher of various writing focusing on Zakat & Islamic studies.

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