Friday Focus: Scale of Righteousness

…faith, fairness, forbearance form standard values

Dr. Javid Iqbal
Srinagar, Publish Date: Aug 9 2018 11:23PM | Updated Date: Aug 9 2018 11:23PM

In an appealing Quranic Verse, the scale of righteousness is not set by turning your face to the east or to the west, but in having faith, being fair and endowed with forbearance, and in accepting all that symbolizes divinity:   

‘Righteousness does not consist of turning your faces towards the East or the West. But righteous is he who believes in God, and the Last Day, and the angels, and the Scripture, and the Prophets, who gives money, though dear, to near relatives, and the orphans, and the needy, and the homeless, and the beggars, and for the freeing of slaves; those who perform the prayers, and pay the obligatory charity, and fulfil their promise when they promise, and patiently persevere in the face of persecution, hardship, and in the time of conflict. These are the sincere, these are the pious.’ (2: 177)

The scale of righteousness is set primarily by belief in God, and the Last Day when every soul shall be called to account for acts of omission and commission. The belief in Last Day and accountability induces discipline in life, so as not to commit an act that would be looked on with disfavour. The faith has to extend to symbols of divinity—the angels assigned to carry out specific jobs as per the divine command. And to the Scriptures, which carry the word of God conveyed by the appointed Prophets in different epochs, in different lands. 

Charity is highly valued, as it means to depart with, what is held dear. Hence to look after the near relatives in need and others in the society who might be in need, such as the orphans, the homeless, and the beggars, slaves in dire need of freedom amounts to fairness in conduct. Along with performing prayer, charity is an obligation, as also fulfilling a promise whenever made. Forbearance is a virtue that needs to be preserved in adverse times—in the face of persecution, hardship and in time of conflict. Those who live by these values are sincere, pious as well.




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