Loving Your Land – That Is Islam!
Sherlock Holmes would have had no difficulty in saying: “Elementary, my dear Abdullah!”
And it is: I mean “elementary” indeed.
I am referring to the fact that every Muslim man, woman and child must love the land of their birth and domicile.
That means the place they are born as well as the place where they live.
And they must love every piece of God Almighty’s earth, which he, explicitly and with great pomp and publicity, created for them.
The Qur’an makes it repeatedly clear that God created the earth and everything in and on it for them: for the entire human family.
So being good stewards and custodians of this earth and all things in it is a basic human requirement.
But, whether anyone else does it or not, and how well or badly they do it, it certainly is a fundamental duty of all those who consider themselves Muslims.
I am not talking about worshipping earth as God. For, that is Haram – meaning it is forbidden by God Almighty in Islam.
Nor am I talking about calling and treating earth as Mother. For, that is also pushing a metaphor too far.
And it is taking earth’s life-giving properties a mile beyond the pale.
And, in the process of doing so, it is forgetting God as the true source and sustainer of all life.
And it is thus giving to earth the powers and rights that legitimately belong to God.
Instead, what I am asking is for all of us human beings, and more so for Muslims in particular, to simply treat our earth right, and not subject it to all the abuses and plunders that human beings from time to time have perpetrated upon it.
And that, naturally and most obviously, includes the place of your birth as well as the place where you have chosen to make your home.
And it includes all other places in between.
That is simple logic and common sense.
And, not the least by that very reason, it is also Islam.
Of course, there is no room in this kind of good and clean Islamic thinking for deviate and diabolical thought, discourse and behavior like extreme nationalistic, racial, linguistic and cultural chauvinism, jingoism and xenophobia.
In fact, “Extremism” and Islam is a contradiction in terms.
It is, often, a connection concocted by the Enemies of Truth and Decency to malign and defame Islam. And to steal Muslim land and wealth and resources.
It is a baseless invention of shameless anti-Islam propagandists.
Or, in some cases, it is a trap in which some of the more naïve and ill-informed or agenda-driven among some elements of the Muslims may have fallen.
So, loving the land of your birth or residence is Islam.
It is human nature, Al-Fitrah, as you would say. And human nature is Islam.
It is recognition of God’s gift to you and your family.
It is the most amazing Middle Path of Islam, between the Extreme of worshipping your land and making it the basis of mayhem on earth, and the other Extreme of not caring for it and abusing and exploiting it in such a way as to turn it into virtual hell for your fellow-human beings as well as for other creations of God such as animals and plants.
So, if you are just an ordinary civilized human being, learn to love your land – all of earth – and treat it well.
But, beyond that, if you are also a Muslim, then don’t just stop at loving your land – your own so-called country and the rest of the planet – but set yourself up as the protector and servant of your country and of every other part of God’s earth.
And there is something else: Leave no stone unturned to invite Your Land and the entire Planet Earth to God Almighty.
And to take the divine message of the Qur’an, God’s word on earth, to every home and heart that needs it – and which one does not?
For, that is what Islam is: It is loving and fearing God on the one hand, and it is, on the other hand, loving people and working to make their life on earth better.
How hard is that to fathom?
And where is the surprise if Sherlock Holmes ends up saying: “Elementary, My Dear Watson?”
© 2011 Syed Husain Pasha
Dr. Pasha is an educator and scholar of exceptional
talent, training and experience. He can be reached at DrSyedPasha [at]
AOL [dot] com or www.IslamicSolutions.com.