By Neyaz Ahmad Naik
The verse of the Holy Quran, which so comprehensively covers this concept of service to humanity, reads
O people of Islam,
“You are the best people ever raised for the good of mankind because you have been raised to serve others; you enjoin what is good and forbid evil and believe in Allah.”(3:111)
You will remain the best as long as you are service-minded, promote good and promote the welfare of society. If you fail to do this, you no longer have a right to boast of the superiority of Islam and the Muslim Ummah. A society that is insensitive to the suffering of other human beings and is not always inclined to serve the cause of humanity cannot be described as an Islamic society, no matter how much it adhered to other aspects of Islamic teachings.
The fundamental qualities that we must all acquire to serve mankind or to develop a passion to serve mankind are: love for humanity, kindness in our hearts for others, a charitable disposition, humility, honesty, a thirst for knowledge, a desire to share knowledge with others and a constant desire to strive in the cause of Allah by doing good. We must be a people from whom goodness flows towards others. Most Ahmadi Muslims possess these characteristics.
The teachings of the Holy Quran and the example of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) direct us on how best to serve mankind. The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) practiced the teachings of the Holy Quran to the fullest extent and is the best example of the true representation of service to mankind and to Allah. That is why Allah says in the Holy Quran:
“And do not forget to do good to one another.”(2:238)
And about the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) the Holy Quran says:
“and we have sent thee not but as a blessing (mercy) for the entire universe (for all peoples)”(21:108)
The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) emphasized love, sympathy, and kindness towards all. He also emphasized that we must show each other great appreciation. He said,
“One who is not grateful to mankind is not grateful to Allah.”(Tirmidhi)
The Promised Messiah (peace be on him) had great compassion for mankind. He said,
“Sympathy for all mankind is a moral obligation and a duty (Arbaeen)…that religion is no religion which does not inculcate sympathy, nor does that man deserve to be called a man who does not have sympathy in him “(message of peace).
The Promised Messiah (peace be on him) said,
“The teachings of the Holy Quran can be divided into two major categories. The first being unity of God, love, and obedience to Him. The second is to treat kindly your brothers and fellow beings… be kind and merciful to humanity…always work for the good of mankind.”
Allah has the power to deliver us from sufferings
The importance of prayers in the service of humanity and in inviting people to the path of Allah cannot be overemphasized. The Promised Messiah (a.s.) always emphasized the importance of prayers in achieving success in our endeavors. Prayers are of utmost importance in bringing moral and spiritual revolution. As Allah has power over everything He only can change the things and can deliver us from our sufferings. So we need to invoke His help at every step. We need to excel all others in praying for the needy and the suffering.
Besides the spiritual aspect of service to mankind or humanity, there are many diverse ways that service to mankind can be accomplished.
- Providing help in ameliorating the sufferings of distressed people
- Educating and training
- Social services
- Material services
- Intangibles like providing company for a lonely person, a kind word, providing guidance and serving as a role model
Institution of Khilafat
All good that members of the Ahmadiyya community acquire and all the good that the Jamaat does is because of its adherence to the institution of Khilafat. Under the banner of “Love for All Hatred for None”, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is rendering its services to humanity without any distinction.
We in the Holy Quran are instructed to feed the hungry, to show love and sympathy to orphans and other weaker sections of the society. Hence service to mankind is the essence of Islam and it is the best way to attain the pleasure of Allah and His nearness.
Thus one of the most important ingredients needed in our recipe to serve others is to have love and sympathy in our hearts for others.