What reason could you have for not
fighting in the Way of Allah-for those men, women and children who
are oppressed and say, 'Our Lord, take us out of this city whose
inhabitants are wrongdoers!
Give us a protector from You! Give us a helper from You!'?
(Surat an-Nisa': 75)
the globe, the majority of people are among the oppressed. They are tortured,
butchered, and live in abject poverty, are homeless, are forced to live
their lives unprotected from the elements and they face disease without
adequate medical care. There are those who cannot even afford a loaf of
bread. There are the elderly, facing neglect, abandonment and denied medical
care. Then there are those who face discrimination, expulsion from their
homes and lands simply because of their ethnicity, language, race or tribe
and even massacres. Helpless, malnourished, defenceless innocent children
are forced to work for money or beg.
Countless people live in fear for their lives anxious about their survival,
in a world in the midst of whose poverty and oppression, there is also
immense extravagance, privilege and wealth. Those blessed with the "good
life" pass by the homeless, see pictures, and watch scenes on television
of those less fortunate than they. Sometimes they feel a brief moment
of pity, but then change the channel, turn away from the image, and in
a short time completely erase that fleeting prick of the conscience.
So many who enjoy the bounties and comforts with which they have been
blessed, never think of
expending effort to save those less fortunate from the conditions in which
they live. They believe it is not up to them to save those people, when
so many are richer and more powerful and in a better position to come
to the aid of the less fortunate.
However, prosperity and power alone are not enough to save those people
and to make this world a place of welfare in which justice, peace, confidence
and well-being prevail. Despite the existence of developed countries around
the world, there are still too many countries, such as Ethiopia, where
people still die daily of starvation. It is apparent that the wealth and
power of some nations are not enough in
themselves to solve the afflictions of drought, poverty and civil warfare.
Only being conscientious will channel resources and power towards the
welfare of the poor and desperate. The sole way of being conscientious
is having faith. It is only the believers who constantly live by their
Eventually, there is only one solution to the injustice, chaos, terror,
massacres, hunger, poverty, and oppression in the world: the values of
Those adverse conditions were created in the first place by hatred, malice,
self-interest, indifference and cruelty and therefore must be undone by
love, compassion, mercy, generosity, unselfishness, sensitivity, tolerance,
commonsense and wisdom. These traits of compassion are found only in those
who fully live by the values taught in the Noble Qur'an, which is our
guidance directly from our Creator. In one verse, Allah (swt) refers to
the Qur'an's feature of leading mankind out of darkness into light.
... A light has come to you from Allah and a Clear
Book. By it, Allah guides those who follow what pleases Him to the ways
of peace. He will bring them from the darkness to the light by His permission,
and guide them to a straight path. (Surat al Ma'ida: 15-16)
In another verse, Allah states that everything would be in corruption
and confusion if the truth were to be according to human desires:
If the truth were to follow their whims and desires,
the heavens and the earth and everything in them would have been brought
to ruin. No indeed! We have given their Reminder, but they have turned
away from it. (Surat al-Muminun: 71)
As you read this passage, millions of people are suffering, are cold
and hungry, or facing expulsion from their homelands. For this reason,
people who have consciences need to think about this, and act to solve
those troubles as if they themselves or their loved ones were facing them.
We need to act both spiritually and materially to alleviate the suffering
and oppression. In one verse, Allah orders conscientious and faithful
people to assume this responsibility:
What reason could you have for
not fighting in the Way of Allah - for those men, women and children who
are oppressed and say, 'Our Lord, take us out of this city whose inhabitants
are wrongdoers! Give us a protector from You! Give us a helper from You!'?
(Surat an-Nisa': 75)
When we consider the Qur'anic commands, it becomes obvious what are our
obligations. The most important thing for Muslims is first, to struggle
in the intellectual domain so that the values of the Qur'an and the Sunnah
prevail over disbelief. The only salvation for the weak, helpless, homeless
and destitute is the practice of the guidance of the Qur'an, which is
directed to all humankind. Therefore, it is our duty to spread the word
and communicate the message, and that is a vital component of worship
for all Muslims.
Those who do not follow their consciences, who are indifferent to the
suffering of others, who spend their wealth on frivolous and vain things,
who fail to show concern for orphans, who look coldly at oppressed woman,
children and the elderly, and who are happy only when there is immorality
and ugliness in the world, will certainly have to give an account in the
Have you seen him who denies the deen (religion)?
He is the one who harshly rebuffs the orphan and does not urge the feeding
of the poor. So woe to those who do salat (regular prayers), whose hearts
from their salat are remote, those who show off and deny help to others.
(Surat al-Ma'un: 1-7)