Many of today’s problems derive from the fact that the world in which we live is rapidly becoming one world. Mankind must perforce learn to live close together in intimate contact with each other. In other words, they must become a true brotherhood. This requires many adjustments.
A faith, if it is to fulfill man’s needs of today, must, therefore, transcend tribal, national, racial and cultural limits, and must speak to men at a universal level. Islam does that. The Qur’an opens with the verse:
All praise belongs to Allah, Lord of all the worlds. (Ch. 1: V2)
This presents the reader with a unified concept of humanity and of the universe. The message of Islam is not confined to any section of mankind. It embraces the whole of mankind and the entire universe.
Say; O mankind! truly I am a Messenger to you all from Allah to Whom belongs the Kingdom of the heavens and the earth. There is no God, but He. He gives life and He causes death… (Ch. 7: V.159)
The advent of the Holy Prophet(sa) is described in Qur’an as:
…a mercy for all peoples. (Ch.21: V108)
Islam proclaims a universal brotherhood of man.
And hold fast, all together, by the rope of Allah and be not divided; and remember the favour of Allah which He bestowed upon you when you were enemies and He united your hearts in love, so that by His grace you became as brothers; and you were on the brink of a pit of fire and He saved you from it. Thus does Allah explain to you His commandments that you may be guided. (Ch. 3: V.104)
Today mankind again stands on the brink of a pit. He has for this age also, explained His commandments that mankind may be rightly guided.
Islam recognises as convenient and beneficial for certain purpose mankind’s diversity of colour, race, language etc.
And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and earth, and the diversity of your tongues and colours. In that surely are Signs for those who possess knowledge. (Ch.30: V23)
But it proclaims that none of these imports or confers any privilege, and announces that the only true badge honour is the purity and righteousness of a person’s life:
O, mankind, We have created you from a male and a female; and We have made you into tribes and sub-tribes that you may recognise one another. Verily, the most honourable among you, in the sight of Allah, is he who is most righteous among you Surely Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Ch.49: V.14)
Every distinction or privilege, whether pertaining colour, race or caste, or derived from family, rank, wealth, is abolished. Islam makes all mankind one great brotherhood, and exhorts all of us to seek and win the pleasure of God through the righteousness and beneficence of our conduct towards each other.
Thus Islam bases itself upon a fundamental unity; unity of God, unity of the universe, unity of man and unity of life. The object of Islam is to establish a balance between all aspects of human activity and to bring about beneficent accord through adjustment.
It is not necessary to set out in any detail the teachings of Islam with regard to the unity of God. It is well recognised by now in all quarters that the central doctrine of Islam is the unity of God. God is One. He is also Unity. Everything else proceeds from Him, and is dependent upon Him. The Qur’an is full of exhortations calling mankind to the recognition and acceptance of the unity of God and study and appreciation of His attributes and their operation. It is not necessary to multiply quotations One should suffice:
He is Allah, and there is no God beside Him, the Knower of the unseen and the seen; He is the Gracious, the Merciful. He is Allah, and there is no God beside Him, the Sovereign, the Holy One, the Source of Peace, the Bestower of Security, the Protector, the Mighty, the Subduer, the Exalted. Holy is Allah, far above that which they associate with Him. He is Allah, the Creator, the Maker, the Fashioner; His are the most beautiful names. All that is in the heavens and the earth glorifies Him, and He is the Mighty, the Wise. (Ch.59: Vs.23-25)