Fitna 8: Humanism through the eye of Islam

10 min readMay 8, 2024


“Allah is the main centre of everything, the main centre of communication between people, to ensure that the truth is the truth, if Allah was forgotten: Then the centre of the entire universe will come to an end.” — [Abdul-Wahab El-Messiri].

An outstanding scientist… An artist famous for charity… A just politician… An athlete loved by the masses. They spend their lives in appreciation and respect. Then they die, and their death attracts sorrows. Amid the event and the intensity of the feeling, the affected people hope for mercy. Rather, they pray for it. Without considering the religion of the deceased, and without care if they were Muslim in the first place. He was a useful, benevolent, noble person.

Of course, that is enough! Isn’t heaven for good people? Doesn’t humanity teach us mercy? How then can we not ask for this mercy and ask God’s forgiveness for them!

In light of this, the voices of correction call that: “God forbade seeking forgiveness for the one who died as a polytheist and promised heaven exclusively for those who believed in Him.

In this, there are evidence and religious texts that settle the matter and eliminate the possibility of controversy. As “Indeed, the religion in the sight of Allah is Islam.” — Al-Imran 19. But there is another argument that needs some consideration: Is it not humane to acknowledge the grace of the good and the beneficial? Islam is the religion of humanity as is heard and said. How can the two not meet?! So, let us wonder: How does Islam view man? And what is a Muslim’s position on the claims of humanism, which sets its own law?

“We have honoured the Children of Adam”

According to Islam, we believe that God Almighty created Adam in his image. He taught him all the names and provided him with good things. Then He granted him a wife and children, and after him they reproduced. Therefore, when we look at the Qur’anic text, we will find that God Almighty mentioned this creature with three definitions. The human being, the son of Adam, and the servant.

According to what the author of the book “The Impossible Humanism” mentions, the three words and their derivatives came each time to fit a specific context and attribute this creature to something different. If God attributes them to their nature and creation, He says, “Man”, and if He attributed them to their father and origin, He says, “The son of Adam or the children of Adam”, but if He attributed them to Himself, He calls them “servant, My servant, or My servants”. And because the “son of Adam” includes all human beings, in all their shapes, spectrums and colours, we see the noble verse saying, “We have honored the Children of Adam.”

That is, Islam deals with man as an honourable creature. They are the supreme creature on earth. And not just an evolutionary mutation produced by the genes of a brainless animal.

If humans in Darwinian humanism were produced by nature, with no difference between them and animals! The human of Islam is a different matter.

As Imam Abu Bakr ibn Al-Arabi Al-Maliki says: “God has no creation that is better than man, for God created him alive, knowing, able, willing, speaking, hearing, seeing, managing, wise, these are the attributes of God, which some scientists expressed, and is the meaning of that “God created Adam in His image” It means on the attributes that we have mentioned earlier”.

What honour for a creature more than for to be created on the image of the creator?! For this reason, Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim said that “God has gave man all honour, of reason, knowledge, eloquence, speech, form, good image, honourable appearance, erect body, acquiring sciences by reasoning and thought, deriving honourable morals from clemency and virtuous obedience.”

And man is a creature dear to his God. God swore by him in Surat Al-Shams, and said, “And [by] the soul and He who proportioned it.” And God only swears by the great things. He subjected the earth, the sky, the sun, and the moon, and all the creatures of the universe, whether inanimate or living to him. They are all owned by him and subject to his will. And He gave him the knowledge that benefits, the mind that understands and is aware, the hand that makes, and the foot that seeks, as if he were the centre of this universe and the most precious in it.

This is the human of Islam

And that is the humanity that Islam knows, a creation that God has endowed with honour and sublimity that were not given to others.

God would not have granted man the universe and honoured him over His creatures without sending him messages and making him aware of legislation and to the extent of the gift, is the extent of the responsibility that falls on its owner in Darwinism’s eye [you are genes that produced each other].

And in the eyes of the religion of humanism, you are here to enjoy and be happy, and there is nothing above that. But in the eyes of Islam, you are an honoured and accountable, and the accountable returns to their asker, so He sees how they fulfilled their trust, and how they acknowledged the kindness and state of their Creator. Here is main point and what distinguishes the people.

The creation or the creator?

“Reverence for God’s command must take precedence over pity for God’s creation.” [Fakhr Al-Razi].

In an old traditional story, and a distant event preceded the prophetic mission by a few years. A Yemeni man came from Zubaid to Mecca with goods to trade in. Al-Aas bin Wael bought them from him and did not give him the price, so when the man sought help from some of the nobles of Quraysh, they abandoned him due to the great position of Al-Aas among them. So, the Zubaydi man stood at the Kaaba and pleaded with the tribes and the people of chivalry. So, the tribes gathered, and their nobles went to Al-Aas and snatched Al-Zubaidi man’s goods from him and returned them to him, in what was known at the time as Al-Fodoul Alliance.

You may know this story, or you do not. But in both cases, it is a moral story that embodies lofty human meanings in which the strong help the weak and gives rights back to the oppressed, who is from their aggressor brother.

For this reason, the Prophet, peace be upon him, said:

“I witnessed with my uncles an alliance in the house of Abdullah bin Jadaan, I do not like to have camels for it, and if I were called to it in Islam, I would have answered.”

That is, the Prophet, peace be upon him, is proud of his presence in this alliance before his honourable mission and stresses that if he were called to it in Islam, he would have answered again. Even if the oppressed and the callers are infidels.

This is the Islam that the Prophet taught us: “A religion that defends what is common among humans and calls for good morals, the lifting of injustice, and the preservation of lives, honour, and money”.

But…! What did the infidels of Quraish mean by their alliance, and what did the Prophet mean by his agreement to the alliance? Why would he agree with them? Where is the centre in all of that?

In his book “God and Man in the Qoran,” the Japanese thinker Toshihiko Izutsu mentions that there is a fundamental difference in the vision of the world between the pre-Islamic eras and Islam. This difference is clearly manifested in the centrality; the pre-Islamic vision of the world was anthropocentric, while the Qur’anic vision of it is of a divine centrality.

That is, the people of Quraish were helping the oppressed for the sake of their reputation and the reputation of their ancestors among the countries and tribes, while the centrality with which the Prophet, peace be upon him, supported the oppressed was the fulfilment of the rights that God commanded.

Between the centrality of man and the centrality of God, Islam is distinguished from everything.

As the author of the book “The Impossible Humanism” mentions, there is not a single semantic field in the Qur’anic system that is not directly related or governed by the concept of the central God. Starting with faith, through moral concepts, to daily practices in trade, work, and home, and the provisions of worldly traditions such as marriage, divorce, and childbearing, and even the provisions of special purification. “They are all brought into a direct relationship with the concept of God.”

Here, Islam differs completely from humanism. The purpose of religion is not to live in this world only without working for the hereafter, or to be restricted to what is common among humans without awareness of the state of these common things according to revelation and the purpose of them, and from whom we hope for their reward. For this reason, our mother, Aisha, asked the Prophet, Peace be upon him, about Abdullah bin Jadaan, the man who embraced the Al-Fodoul Alliance in his house, and was famous for his keeping good relations with kins and generosity to the poor, but died as an infidel, and she said: Would that benefit him?

For the Prophet, peace be upon him, to respond with a brief and adequate word, dedicating the supreme meaning and first purpose of Islam. he said: It does not benefit him, for he never said, “God, forgive me my sin on the Day of Judgment.”

God’s balance

The claim of Western humanism is that it accepts man in all his forms and types, respect all his tendencies and desires, legislate for him all that he loves and is satisfied with, so he can live a good life. But it may strike Iraq with destructive weapons. Plundering Palestine and expelling its people. It may occupy entire continents and steal their bounties. It ravages entire countries and then bestows false protection on refugees, shabby housing, and beautified servitude in the form of a low-paid job.

All this will be done by Western humanism while convincing us that humans are the same and that they are equal in rights and duties Thus, some will be deceived and ask for heaven for these honourable humanists.

Doesn’t Islam equal between people like the teeth of a comb?

Here they [non-Muslims] will read half of the verse: O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. And here we [Muslims] will complete for them its half that they forgot: “Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.”

This is the only balance.

In Islamic law, people are distinguished according to their position on belief in God Almighty and in the prophecy of His noble messenger. And in His law, man is praised because he has believed. He is vilified because he disbelieved.

This Vilifying does not mean injustice in this world and stealing of rights, and that praise does not mean giving the believer what he does not deserve from the rights of the infidel. But it is God’s balance with which He rewards the servants in the hereafter and sets the compass of the believers in this world to deal with rights and duties.

In the light of this, we can understand the issue of asking mercy for non-Muslims, for example, on the pretext of their benefit to humanity and their grace over it. Here we ask: Where is God’s right? Is God greater or humanity?

Who created and levelled, then others were worshiped? Who provided then was denied? Which of the two rights is greater: The right of the human, for whom technology and its inventors have facilitated life, or the right of God, whose praise thunder glorifies, and the angels fear Him?!

Whoever gives humanity, he has the right to be appreciated, celebrated and famous. And whoever believes in God has hope for mercy and forgiveness with Him. Whoever falls short in one of the two has no right to ask for his reward, nor to hope for his reward.

Despite all this, Islam does not forbid righteousness and equity with other peaceful people. It does not forbid sympathy and compassion for the oppressed. Rather, it urges that injustice be lifted from them, even if they are non-Muslims. It does not forbid the appreciation of a useful scientist or a worthy talent. It does not forbid grief and pain for the afflicted and loss of honourable people. It does not forbid to console the bereaved and congratulate the happy. Even if all of them are non-Muslims. Islam does not forbid us from any of this.

But it forbids us to raise anyone above God. And it awakens in our heart’s jealousy for our God whom we worship, that people disbelieve in Him, deny Him, attribute to Him the companion and the child, and even deny Him and blaspheme in His names.

Then we come to ask him for His paradise for them because they invented a telephone, a computer, and an electric car for us!

قُلْ أَيُّ شَيْءٍ أَكْبَرُ شَهَادَةً ۖ قُلِ اللَّهُ ۖ شَهِيدٌ بَيْنِي وَبَيْنَكُمْ ۚ وَأُوحِيَ إِلَيَّ هَٰذَا الْقُرْآنُ لِأُنذِرَكُم بِهِ وَمَن بَلَغَ ۚ أَئِنَّكُمْ لَتَشْهَدُونَ أَنَّ مَعَ اللَّهِ آلِهَةً أُخْرَىٰ ۚ قُل لَّا أَشْهَدُ ۚ قُلْ إِنَّمَا هُوَ إِلَٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ وَإِنَّنِي بَرِيءٌ مِّمَّا تُشْرِكُونَ (19)

[Say, “What thing is greatest in testimony?” Say, “ Allah is witness between me and you. And this Qur’an was revealed to me that I may warn you thereby and whomever it reaches Do you [truly] testify that with Allah there are other deities?” Say, “I will not testify [with you].”Say, “Indeed, He is but one God, and indeed, I am free of what you associate [with Him]]. — Al-an’aam 19




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