Diversity within Islam
[ August 19, 2016 ]
Islam teaches us that diversity is a fact of nature and it makes the nature beautiful. The Almighty Allah has created this whole universe with diversity. There is diversity among human beings. They have variety of genders, colors and languages and multiplicity of races and tribes. These diversities are indicative of Almighty Allah’s creative power and wisdom and are good and healthy since they endow human life with richness and beauty.
The inter-community dialogue for building relations and minimizing contradictions and inconsistencies is the most appropriate way for inducing
The Almighty Allah wants human beings to derive benefit from this diversity and not to allow it to generate unhealthy schisms and divisions in their ranks. The diversities of races, families and tribes also have a healthy and constructive purpose as narrated in the holy Quran: ‘O people, We have created you from a male and a female and made you into races and tribes so that you may know each other. Surely the most honored of you in the sight of God is the one who is the most righteous of you (49:13). Instead of enabling human beings to know each other better, there is no reason why these diversities should create barriers, or cause animosities among human beings. In addition to these natural diversities there are others that are part of the human societies and cultures. There are diversities of viewpoints. The holy Quran recognizes the individuality of each human being as well as the individuality of their groups and communities.
Islam does not consider all viewpoints correct or of equal value. However, it is also the fact well recognized in Islam that very often the differences of opinions are also a token of Allah’s mercy. If Almighty Allah had so willed, says the holy Quran, he could have forced people to come together to one point, but he did not do so. The Almighty Allah did send his Prophets and Messengers from time to time so that the right path might be made clear through them. As regards the final judgment as to who followed the truth and who did not, that will be made known on the Day of Judgment by the Almighty Allah himself. In keeping with this principle, the Almighty Allah forbade his Prophets and the believers from having recourse to coercion in religion. There is no compulsion in religion as said in the holy Quran (2:256). The inter-community dialogue for building relations and minimizing contradictions and inconsistencies is the most appropriate way for inducing the spirit of unity and diversity among muslims in any part of the world as Islam gives much guidance on the subject of diversity, unity, harmony, tolerance and peace. The respect for diversity comes when we recognize the important principles of the dignity of the human beings, universal human rights, and fundamental freedom of thought, conscience and belief and Islam recognizes all these principles.
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