In this quote, Ali speaks of the rights of fellow Muslims, proving to us the importance of justice in Islam. Islam has outlined some universal fundamental rights for humanity as a whole, irrespective of whether they belong to the Islamic community or not. So to begin with, let us first understand what exactly is meant by human rights in Islam.
When we speak of these rights, we speak of the rights that have been granted by none other than Allah. They are a part of the Islamic faith, and every person who claims himself to be a Muslim will have to recognize them. As for those who fail to enforce them, Allah says in the Holy Quran in Chapter Maideh Verse 44, “Those who do not judge by what God has sent down are the disbelievers.”Now that we have understood what is meant by human rights, let us go into more detail about these rights. Allah has created us all from clay, as equals, none more important than another..
.in fact; Allah mentions this in suratul Insan when he says, “there surely came over man a period of time when he was a thing not worth mentioning.” Infact these rights are not only mentioned in Islam, but also in the Universal Declaration of Human rights which clearly states that “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” It also states that “Everyone has the right to life, liberty, and security of person”.
Since every man was born equal with nothing, and every man will die with nothing, is it really justice that whilst so many people are living blissful lives, others are deprived of basic human rights, like the rights to survival, safety and freedom?Why is it that whilst we sit here peacefully, on the other side of the world, there are millions of people, male and female alike deprived of their education. Why is it that there are SO many children, younger in age than us, who instead of enjoying a childhood like the one we are familiar with, must look after a large family? Why is it that there are SO many adults, fresh with energy and knowledge, who instead of relaxing and spending times with their family, are taken as slaves and made to work day and night?Why are there so many people starving? Why are there so many people with hardly anything to cover their bodies? Why are there thousands of people who have never opened a book in their lives, merely because they weren’t seen fit to? Why are there SO many people inflicted with all sorts of diseases, that in the west would be cured instantly with the available medical supplies, yet over there, are ignored?What has happened to these people and their rights? Why have these basic human rights been violated and trampled on? Has too much of our money been wasted on DKNY bags or Chanel perfumes to spare some for those more in need of it? Have we been paying too much attention to celebrity news, to notice what is happening to those less fortunate? Or have we just been too occupied with our studies and exams, which we obviously are so grateful for and have never complained about?Or maybe, just maybe, it is out of our selfishness that we are so blinded to the obvious. But if we begin to take notice, if we get up and make a move, we can make a difference, and we can begin to save lives. Giving charity all the time is a great thing to do, but is it enough? These people need a voice, and if we become their voice, then maybe their cries for help will be heard. If enough people raise awareness about these issues, something will be done.
It is not one person alone that makes the difference, but it is those every individuals put together that make the difference, which is why your say counts, and why you can help.And the cause here could not have been greater. These people, wherever they live and whoever they are, have nothing. Yet they have the most important thing. Faith. Because they haven’t given up, even though us, blessed with everything from food and clothing to education and comfortable homes, have deprived ourselves from that one thing. How thankful are we for what we have? Let us compare ourselves to those people out there whose rights have been taken away from them unjustly. Those people that suffer and work so hard to get through life.
Who has the greater right to survival? To education?We complain about the smallest of things, be it school or food or even not getting to watch the programme we’ve been waiting for all week. And at the same time there are people who have never switched on a TV in their lives because they’re the ones too busy making it for us. Those people out there would give anything to be in our shoes, to be educated, to be able to eat whenever they want. How small and selfish does that make us? We take every single blessing for granted, that we do not even deserve these blessings.Islam teaches us to help the needy, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and treat the wounded. In suratul Thariaat verse 19 Allah says: “And in their wealth there is acknowledged right for the needy and destitute”. This verse shows us that those in need of our wealth, have every right to it, and we should willingly give it.
The Prophet although not wealthy, used to always help those in need, yet we abandon our Islamic duties, and do nothing to help?The least that we can do today is to be grateful for what we have, and to appreciate the blessings Allah has given us…to appreciate that we have families, education, and that we have roofs on top of us.As for giving money to those that need it, Imam Ali says “do not feel ashamed for giving little, because refusal is smaller than that.” However little you have to give, give it, because that is better than doing nothing at all. We are all equal, so why should one of us be deprived of rights that Allah has given us? Let us help establish justice, and bring peace to the world. Let us try and give back these people their rights.
Let us help. Let us speak. Let us make the future a better place. Let us begin, today.