Socio-Moral Teachings of the Qur’an: Insights from Surah Hujjurat—II

Socio-Moral Teachings of the Qur’an: Insights from Surah Hujjurat—II

Abid Qayoom Mir

The present essay is in continuation with my previous one dated 20th February, 2019. In that, the very basic but important socio-moral teachings of the Quran discussed in first six verses of surah Hujjurat were highlighted. Thus, the present write up is an attempt to highlight such principles and guidelines which are very necessary for peace and unity discussed in this surah.
Peace and unity in a society are very important and basic teachings of the Holy Quran. In order to maintain peace and unity in a society, a number of verses of the Holy Quran narrate such principles and guidelines which play a very important role in maintaining them among all members of the society. Few among them have been discussed in Surah Hujjurat, and a summary and import of these verses is presented below.
In Verses 7-8 again, the status and authority of Almighty Allah and His Prophet(SAW) have been highlighted as the sole authority to describe any socio-moral value, same as discussed in the very first few verses. Believers are advised not to force Messenger of Allah(SAW) to accept your suggestions or obey you in many things, doing so is very harmful for you. To surrender one`s suggestion is not an easy task. For doing so one needs will power and that can be only achieved by beautifying the heart with faith (Iman) and by abominating and detesting wickedness and disobedience. People of such character are rightly guided. Such are the real blessings of Almighty, showered on the believers.
One of the biggest and peril threat to any society are conflicts and disputes among its members. Every dispute and controversy is danger for any unity and brotherhood, So, the Quran discourages such disputes in any society, particularly in a Muslim society. In this Surah, the Quran does not only discourage such disputes but also presents instructions and principles for those believers who are not part of such controversies, and encourages every member of a Muslim society to play their positive role in order to fold up such strife and feuds for the only one reason that “all believers are brothers”. If any dispute arises between two parties of believers, verse nine highlights that those who are not part of this dispute are not mere spectators and are not supposed to take the taste of this dispute, but are liable to take necessary actions against those who transgresses against other until they turn towards the command of Allah , that is, peace, just and unity.
Brotherhood, peace and unity in any society can be only maintained after giving due respect to every member of a society. Mostly disputes and controversies arise on the basis of either disrespecting others by calling them with bad nicknames, and backbiting or underestimating them on the basis of caste, colour, religion, and region. Spying and suspecting are such bad traits which shake and disrupt peace. Islam restricts its believers for doing so and makes them aware about the consequences and reasons if ignored. From verses 11-13, a list of such socio-moral values has been provided which destroy unity and peace. In this context believers are asked to restrain themselves from bad habits like-laughing at others with contempt, leveling baseless charges and allegations on others, defaming others or calling others by bad nick names. Doing such activities will not only disturb and disrupt peace and unity among the members of the society, but will also make man selfish, and arrogant which is also a threat to the peaceful society.
Peace in a society gets disrupted when people don’t refrain from hurting people`s feelings. In order to respect people`s emotions and feelings believers are asked to refrain from much suspicion, spying and backbiting. Backbiting is such a major sin and crime that it have been related with eating the flesh of one`s own brother, who is dead. These bad traits shake society and become source for conflicts and disputes. In order to maintain Muslim brotherhood, such bad habits and manners are necessarily to be avoided.
. Underestimating and miscalculating others on the basis of caste, race and tribe are more danger than any other to the unity and universal brotherhood. Verse 13, reveals that these castes, races and tribes have been created just for identification, as worthy and honored in the sight of Allah is he who is most righteous. So discrimination on the basis of these, is not allowed, thus this message plays very important role in maintaining peace and unity among the all members of the society.
The main teachings/ principles, discussed above of Surah Hujjurat, can be summarized as:
1. Almighty Allah and His beloved Prophet (SAW) are the sole authority to describe and demonstrate any socio-Moral value.
2. One who is not a part of dispute, if it arises between two groups of believers is responsible to play his/her role to fold up disputes and controversies without taking part to either side.
3. Restrain from those activities which are threat to the peace and unity of a society like- Laughing at others, levelling baseless allegations on others, backbiting and calling anyone with bad nick names and so on.
4. Underestimating others on the basis of caste, race and tribe are more danger than any other to the unity and universal brotherhood.
5. More worthy and honoured in the sight of Allah is he who is most righteous, whatever caste he has.

— The author holds a PG in Islamic Studies from IUST, Awantipora and can be reached at:
abidmir412@gmail.com