MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, KUALA LUMPUR – Achieving world peace is inevitable from how individuals perceive human dignity. If it is valued, peace becomes more attainable.
General Secretary of Muhammadiyah Abdul Mu’ti mentioned that Islam has sources to elevate human dignity. From the creation to the entirety of life on Earth, Islam positions human beings as the noblest of all creatures Allah bestows.
For instance, humans are described as the best of creations (Surah At-Tin, 95:4), are privileged far above many of creatures (Surah Al-Isra, 17:70), encompass physical and spiritual dimensions (Surah As-Sajdah, 32:7-9), with four inherent traits: physical (jasmaniah), religious (diniyah), intellectual (aqliah), and spiritual (insaniah/nufusiyah) aspects.
This superiority underscores the sanctity and preciousness of human life in Islam. Surah Al-Maidah verse 32 mentions two scenarios: whoever takes a life, it will be as if people killed all of humanity; and whoever saves a life, it will be as if they saved all of humanity.
Moreover, Islamic jurisprudence upholds the concept of honoring human dignity through prioritizing five Shariah objectives (Maqasid al-Shariah): preserving religion (Hifz al-Din), preserving life (Hifz al-Nafs), preserving intellect (Hifz al-‘Aql), preserving lineage (Hifz al-Nasl), and preserving property (Hifz al-Mal).
Islam promotes individual dignity and the importance of respectful coexistence among people. In Islam, all human beings are considered equal in the sight of God.
“Race, gender, physical appearance, and material possessions do not confer superiority. The excellence of individuals depends on the quality of their righteous deeds (taqwa). Respecting others is a noble teaching of Islam. Islam prohibits racism, discrimination, violence, colonialism, and any harm,” mentioned Mu’ti, citing Surah An-Nahl verse 97.
Furthermore, many verses of al-Quran prohibit humans from committing harm against themselves or others.
“Islam prohibits all forms of murder, environmental destruction, kidnapping, abortion, slavery, suicide, and any harm that threaten the preservation of nature and life,” said Mu’ti when being a panelist in an International Symposium organized by Institut Kefahaman Islam Malaysia (IKIM), Brigham Young University (BYU) of the United States, UID Sejahtera, and Seminari Theologi Malaysia on July 5-6, 2023.
According to Surah Al-Hujurat verse 13, diverse identities of individuals should serve as means of understanding and connection instead of limitations or exclusivity.
If each Muslim understands and elaborates on the Islamic perspective on human dignity, achieving global peace becomes more plausible and inevitable.
“Quoting Surah Al-A’raf verse 56, peace is possible when human dignity is ensured. This requires conducive environments, policies, and cultures that nurture human life, sustainability, security, prosperity, freedom, and identity. Peace is also attainable in a safe and clean environment free from pollution and environmental degradation. In this context, Islam forbids humans from causing corruption (fasad) on Earth, which God has created as a safe planet,” said Mu’ti on Wednesday (July 5) in the international symposium on Upholding Human Dignity for Peaceful Coexistence.