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The path of mercy and honor

Manifestations of how Allah has honored man

When Allah created all the children of Adam, He ordered them (the angels) to prostrate to him. {And surely, We created you (your father Adam) and then gave you shape (the noble shape of a human being), then We told the angels, “Prostrate to Adam”, and they prostrated, except Iblîs (Satan), he refused to be of those who prostrate.}(Al-A’râf:11)

Allah created man and honored him. He preferred him over many of what He had initially created. Allah, the Exalted, says: {And indeed We have honoured the Children of Adam, and We have carried them on land and sea, and have provided them with At-Taiyibât (lawful good things), and have preferred them above many of those whom We have created with a marked preference.}(Al-Isrâ’:70)

Therefore, he is an honored and preferred creature, since he was favored and revered by his Lord with the following:

1-Dignity and preference in his physical constitution: Allah, the Exalted, says: {Verily, We created man of the best stature (mould)}(At-Tin:4)Allah has created him in the best stature; with a well-organized body and with each part fitting in with the other, and also with the blessings of the mind, and the ability to think, utter and hear. He has created him in the best form and shape.

2-Dignity and preference in having the land and sea subjected to him: This includes the atmosphere, and this confirms how Allah has honored man in the way explained above. First; because Allah, the Almighty, has subjected all these entities to man, and singled him out from the rest of His creation. This serves as evidence that in this world man takes the position similar to a president who is followed or a king who is obeyed, and everything else is like his flock which follows behind him. Allah, the Almighty, says: {And indeed We have honoured the Children of Adam, and We have carried them on land and sea}(Al-Isrâ’:70) Rather, Allah, the Exalted, tells us in His book that He has made whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth subject to man, as a means of honoring him. And has subjected to you all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth; it is all as a favour and kindness from Him. {Verily, in it are signs for a people who think deeply.}(Al-Jâthiya:13)

3-The provision of the good and lawful things: Allah has granted humans the privilege to eat whatever he pleases of the lawful things. He gave food many benefits, and He made the food of man plentiful and full of variety in comparison to that which the animals eat. Allah has honored man by blessing him with all that through His Grace and Generosity (Glorified be He). {Who has made the earth a resting place for you, and the sky as a canopy, and sent down water (rain) from the sky and brought forth therewith fruits as a provision for you. Then do not set up rivals unto Allâh (in worship) while you know (that He Alone has the right to be worshipped).}(Al-Baqarah:22)

4-Preference over much of what He has created (Glorified be He). Hence, man senses his dignity, greatness, stature, and his magnitude due to the honor that Allah gave him. As man is not considered a small and insignificant creation in the world of living matter – he is not considered a small trivial thing as he is considered when he is measured with those materialistic scales which considers the earth itself as a small trivial thing, where one atomic bomb can wipe off two hundred thousand people, as happened in Hiroshima. The significance of man in the view of Islam lies in being held in high esteem by Allah. When we learn about the creation through the verses of the Qur’an, the prostration of the universe to Adam and then the expulsion of Satan by Allah due to him being the only entity who refused to prostrate to Adam, we realize just how important this basis is at the time when humanity can no longer find salvation from its predicament, because of the imposition of the strong on the weak, except through this path - the path of the Qur’an which grants man his freedom, his dignity and his full freedom of choice. On the path of mercy and honor, it is not acceptable to insult a human being, disrespect him, or ridicule him. Allah, the Almighty says: {O you who believe! Let not a group scoff at another group, it may be that the latter are better than the former; nor let (some) women scoff at other women, it may be that the latter are better than the former, nor defame one another, nor insult one another by nicknames. How bad is it, to insult one’s brother after having Faith [i.e. to call your Muslim brother (a faithful believer) as: “O sinner”, or “O wicked”, etc.]. And whosoever does not repent, then such are indeed Zâlimûn (wrong-doers, etc.).}(Al-Hujurât:11)

There is no superiority of an Arab over a non-Arab, or of a non-Arab over an Arab; or of a white person over a black one, or a black person over a white one, except in piety. Truly, the noblest among you is he who is the most pious. Allah, the Almighty, says: {O you who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins. And spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting) . And fear Allâh. Verily, Allâh is the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful.}(Al-Hujurât:13)

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said: “Verily, Allah does not look at your appearance or your wealth, but rather He looks at your hearts and your actions.”[Muslim]

How the pride and dignity of man is measured

Therefore, man realizes this dignity and honor by the amount he is committed to and pursues this path: {Whosoever desires honour, power and glory then to Allâh belong all honour, power and glory [and one can get honour, power and glory only by obeying and worshipping Allâh (Alone)].}(Fâtir or Al-¬Malâ’ikah:10)

Moreover, he is humiliated by the amount he distances himself from this path, whereas all the creations willingly obey Allah. Allah, the Exalted, says: {See you not that to Allâh prostrates whoever is in the heavens and whoever is on the earth, and the sun, and the moon, and the stars, and the mountains, and the trees, and Ad-Dawâb (moving living creatures, beasts, etc.), and many of mankind? But there are many (men) on whom the punishment is justified. And whomsoever Allâh disgraces, none can honour him. Verily! Allâh does what He wills.}(Al-Hajj:18)

Although Allah has honored mankind, a large number of people have chosen the path of humiliation. {And whomsoever Allâh disgraces, none can honour him.}(Al-Hajj:18)

They choose to look at humans as beasts, deaf machines, financial figures, or they have other approaches that contradict the honor Allah has bestowed on man due to His Grace and Generosity.

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Berisha Pennekmrt

A Thai educationist who converted from Buddhism to Islam
There would be no hunger.
“I have not found a religion that has laid down such a comprehensive legislation for alms-giving (zakat) like Islam has. The Muslim community that is keen on paying Zakat is devoid of poverty, deprivation and homelessness. Imagine if the whole world was guided to Islam, there wouldn’t remain on earth any starving or deprived people.”

Man’s dignity lies in being a human being; for Islam does not create a conflict between the two sexes. It is not only for men as opposed to women, or only for women as opposed to men, as people were created from one soul. Allah, the Almighty, says: {O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from him (Adam) He created his wife [Hawwa (Eve)], and from them both He created many men and women and fear Allâh through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship). Surely, Allâh is Ever an All¬-Watcher over you.}(An-Nisâ’:1)

Accordingly, whoever desires to possess this dignity and honor, has to pursue its path. Allah, the Almighty, says: {all power and honour belong to Allah.}(Yûnus:65)