Towards the eastern corner of the Kaaba lays the Black Stone, reminding us, besides its different values and connotations, of a chief moral value in Islam, that is unity, as taught to the early communities of humankind.
The Holy Mosque in Mecca was subject to renovation work at the hands of the Amaleks, then the Jurham’s tribe, then Qusai bin Kilab, the grandfather of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). Five years before the revelation of Prophet Mohammad, (pbuh), part of the Kaaba was destroyed as a result of severe rain, which necessitated its renovation.
Taking the decision to rebuild the Kaaba, the tribe of Quraysh kept collecting stones till the height of the holy building was increased. Clans worked separately, till they were then faced by the challenge of being unable to place the Black Stone back to its place, as a result of a too high building. Then arose a fierce disagreement among them as to who would have the honor of lifting the Black stone and restoring it to its original place.
They referred the deadlock, which lasted for 5 days, to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), the first man to enter the mosque after its restoration. The Prophet (pbuh) then ordered that they bring him a cloak and spread it on the ground, where he placed the Black Stone exactly in the middle, asking them to hire a representative of each clan, who would hold the borders of the cloak, stretching it and lifting it up all together.
Then he (pbuh) took the stone, placing it in the corner with his own hands; completing the restored building of the Kaaba and teaching them an early lesson about unity, and how it’s capable of sorting out any dispute.
Islam promotes unity and tuneful bond among individuals as cornerstone to strong and harmonious society, one that’s based on brotherhood and compassion.
Allah says in the Holy Qur’an:
“The believers are brothers.” – (Qur’an 49:10)
– Congregational Prayer, Unity is Rewarded
Muslims, through the different acts of worship ordained by God, are guided into practicing unity and brotherhood.
They are encouraged to pray in congregation as a further emphasis on the importance of unity, proximity, and enacting brotherly bond and community ties among themselves.
The reward of congregation prayers is said to be 25 times better than prayers offered individually.
Congregational prayer, whether the daily obligatory prayers, Friday Prayer, or Tahajudd and Keyam in Ramadan, further strengthens the sense of community and harmony among Muslims.
A further weight is given to the notion of unity and brotherly support among Muslims through the famous parable of Prophet Moses (pbuh). Asked by God to go to the grand Pharaoh of Egypt and make Dawah to him, Prophet Moses asked Allah to send with him his brother Aarun as his minister and assistant to support him and buoy up his influence.
Again unity is power.
– Loving Society Based on High Moral Values
A further stress is laid on the concept of unity through the various characteristics Muslims are encouraged to develop among themselves, their families and communities, so that to ensure a brotherly tie and harmonious co-existence, all key factors for the foundation of a strong and loving Muslim society.
A Muslim Community is bonded with mutual responsibility of respect, love and care befalling all of its members in a framework of social order and moral values clearly defined and stipulated in the Qur’an and the Sunnah.
Muslims are asked to enact emotions of love for one another for the sake of Allah. They are told that they are all equal without discrimination based on color, culture, race or social ranking.
A Muslim is asked to support his brother “whether he is doing wrong, or wrong is done to him!” He’s to support him if he’s a victim by shielding him against the aggression befalling him, and if he is himself the aggressor, he’d support him as well by helping him refrain from the wrong act he’s doing- it’s kind of moral support and moral responsibility shared by Muslims towards one another.
– Shunning Disputes
The wrath of dissension and enmity befalling many of the so-called Muslim societies is the result of failing to commit to the moral frame outlined in the Qur’an and Sunnah.
We see dissension among a single Muslim society over differing political trends, religious schools of thought, social superiority and the like. A far more serious dissension and discord is found among Muslim nations over political gains, global influence, natural resources, among other objectives, where a Muslim country doesn’t mind fighting against another Muslim country.
In such a case, Muslims are asked to intervene and stop the aggression of one Muslim nation against another, as a further stress on the signification of unity. Shunning disputes is a mutual responsibility among Muslims to save a wronged community against the aggression of another; even it was another Muslim community. Otherwise it would be violation of the notion of Justice, a cornerstone of the foundation of Islam and the Law of God.
Allah says in the Holy Qur’an:
“ And obey God and His Messenger and do not engage in disputes with one another, lest you lose courage and become insignificant, and be patient surely God is always with patient.”(—Qur’an 8:46)
– Unity and Brotherhood, a Bless Overlooked
Taking lightly or being ungrateful to the principles guiding a proper Muslim community as explained in the Qur’an and Sunnah is simply causing us to miss out on the bliss of love and warmth of a loving society.
Allah says in the Qur’an:
“And remember Allah’s Favor on you for you were enemies one to another but He joined your hearts together, so that, by His Grace, you became brethren (in Islamic Faith)”. — (Qur’an 3:103)
The core of our modern aches is spiritual- it’s the lack of love and devotion that’s keeping people sullen and cold, replacing the feelings of harmony and warmth with those of enmity and anxiety, among many other negative traits that taint our seemingly modern and progressive societies.
Also competing for the sake of competition is another element wreaking havoc of any chances of unity in our communities, sowing more animosity and negativity among people, making them weaker, more fearful and more defensive.
Besides the bond of Faith and believing in one God, Muslims are united through a list of endless mutual duties and principles that constitute the milestone of a harmonious community.
They are to strengthen their brotherly bond asserting their unity through spreading the greeting of Salam (peace), providing advice, warning against external or internal plots and conspiracies, exchanging visits at the time of illness, exchanging gifts- over and above being bounded in safeguarding the well-being of the ummah, that is one community with branches stretching throughout the farthest of countries and nations.
Allah says in the Qur’an:
“And be not as those who divided and differed among themselves after the clear proofs had come to them. It is they for whom there is an awful torment”— (Quran 3:105)
We have many living examples where division among Muslims weakened them and turned them victims of vicious political agendas.
Also alms giving is a show of mutual responsibility among a Muslim society, a genuine Muslim society, wherein it doesn’t befit a well-off Muslim to enjoy a massive wealth whilst his fellow Muslims are struggling to provide their basic needs.
I can’t help but recall the very famous Hadith we all know, in which our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) draws a beautiful analogy depicting the relationship between Muslims showing them as one building…
“The relationship between believers is like a building, part of which support other parts.”- A Prophetic Hadith narrated by the two Imams Bukhari and Muslim
Another amazing way of describing unity, feelings of compassion and mutual kindness among Muslims is stated in another Hadith of the Prophet wherein he (pbuh) says:
“The Muslims are like a single man; if his eye hurts his whole body suffers, and if his head hurts his whole body suffers.”—Narrated by Imam Muslim.
We all came across such Hadiths in early childhood and primary education, but today, with the last fine thread tying us Muslims to our Islamic morals stretched really thin, a sincere reminder of the nobility of this doctrine is due.
Posted on: 27- May- 2011