Islamic Salvation: The Only Deterrent to Social Disorders
by Dr. Musa Qutub
Today the United States of America is materially the strongest nation on earth. It seems to have it all-absolute super abundance of everything. Many view this incredible abundance as the world's greatest marvel. The country's resources and early settlers played a pivotal role in creating the prosperity and affluence through commitment to moral principles. However, subsequent generations started drifting, eventually plunging the present nation into conditions of social disorder and decay from within. In order for a nation to remain strong abroad, it must be strong at home. Nothing is more damaging to a nation than the decay and collapse from within. God the Almighty has blessed and made this land a country of opportunity, by bestowing on it unlimited natural resources. The federal government is doing what it can to aspire to the high principles and attain the objectives of the founding fathers. But in the final analysis the responsibility lies in the hands of the individuals themselves. Despite such affluence, most are hurting. They are unhappy, committing suicide; homes are breaking up, a complete mess. Why? Where did we go wrong? What is missing that is driving so many to the edge of the precipice. Through time many nations have faced similar challenges. We are not trying to brood over the dark side only. However, analysis of statistics and efforts to meet current challenges indicates darkness instead of light at the end of the tunnel. Such darkness and social disorder is not caused by God, but by the hands of individuals. Statistics on social disorders are alarming and the problems must be dealt with swiftly with practical and innovative solutions. Communism thrives on such social disorders and is around the corner just waiting eagerly to take over. The family is always considered the basis of society. The one parent family is soaring to 26 percent. Three out of four marriages end in divorce; couples do not take marriage seriously. Divorce laws make it easy to obtain a divorce, and the most hated thing to God is divorce, because it shatters the family. Frustrated by such statistics and opting for an alternative, young people these days prefer living together unmarried hopping from one partner to another leading them to nowhere. As they approach their thirties they decide to have a baby without marriage and contract a partner without obligations to have one. According to a federal study conducted on American females in their twenties, reported the following: One out of three single females became pregnant at least once. One sixth risked pregnancy without contraceptives. One third lived with a male. Four out of five engaged in sex at least once. Forty percent aborted their first pregnancy. Never married females have had sexual intercourse with an average of 4.5 men (50 percent with serious relationships and 50 percent with casual relationships.) An estimated 100 million Americans suffer from loneliness and depression, 15-20 million suffer from anxiety, and 100 million are not affiliated with any religion. Extent of sexual abuse of children is mindnumbing. One study indicates that 47 percent (38 percent girls and 9 percent boys) are molested by someone they know before they reach age 18. Consequences are shocking. Psychological damage, exploitation and assault on these children is resulting in depression, poor school performance, aggressive behavior towards peers, poor concentration, pseudo maturity, suicidal feelings, and sexual abuse of other younger children to name a few. More than half of all 17 year olds are sexually active and only one third use contraceptives. More than 11 million unmarried teenagers (15-19 years old) are sexually active with their parents knowledge. Sexually transmitted diseases are out of control. The Gonorrhea rate among girls increased 400 percent since 1965. Chlamydia infections are affecting 4 million annually. Every two minutes a teenager becomes pregnant. Some females are hardly 12 and the father-to-be 14-15. Neither have a job or education. The U.S.A. leads the developed nation's rate of teen- age pregnancies. According to a study by Alan Good-Macher institute, every year one million teenagers become pregnant, 13 million 13- 19 years old) have had sexual intercourse, and 7 out of 10 have had sex in high school. 95 percent of all teenage boys and 81 percent of all teenage girls have premarital sex. Virginity is considered a disease, hopping to bed is considered the fashion. What is the cause of it? Explosion of teenage pregnancies can be attributed to the decline of parental and institutional authority, high divorce rate, wide spread acceptance of acts of fornication and adultery, TV, newspapers, the assault on the traditional values only creates generations of sexually promiscuous adolescents. Of all married men, 66 percent cheat on their wives, and of all married women, 54 percent cheat on their husbands. These extramarital affairs have become a rash. Adultery between single females and married men is fast becoming a fact of life. One out of five females does not have a potential mate resulting in having affairs with married men. AIDS strikes 200 victims a week. By 1991, the death toll is expected to be 179,000. Herpes spread is to reach 38 million Americans and is spreading. Alcohol seems to be out of hand, this topic was covered in The Invitation, Vol. 3, No. 2, May 1986. These are some of the social disorders rapidly gobbling up America. The reality is higher than what the statistics indicate. Where do we go from here? What quality of life are our children going to have? Why oh why do we have these problems in the first place? Does anybody care for these Children? We do, Our hearts go out to these victims and families. Our message is moral, fill man and woman s conscious with goodness. We should aspire and pray we can institute a God-conscious society, a society that operates and implements the laws of God. Such a society alone will instill the value of good deeds into the minds of people. Salvation by faith and good deeds are both tied together integrally in Islam. This is the comprehensive Islamic solution to the social disorders. Good deeds are central, not peripheral to the Islamic life and salvation. Islam gives no blank check of salvation to sinners. Individuals have to earn it, work for it, and deserve it, through a commitment to good deeds. Salvation by faith alone is preached by some other religions, we believe, is too individual centered - i.e. "selfishness centered." It only massages the ego of the sinner, advances him to the inner sanctorum of bliss and paradise, without ever having to do an iota of goodness and good deeds, thus leaving the victims of his sins to the mercy of society and others, someone's sins of pleasure, someone else's problem. Islam condemns such behavior and such approaches to salvation. While faith does help the person formulate his thoughts in a God- conscious manner, but thoughts-i.e. Thinking about doing something doesn't mean anything unless the deed is done. No matter how well intentioned one may be faith or thinking about God is not beneficial to others until the good deeds are produced. Hence a combination of faith and good deeds is the godly perspective on salvation and life of the Muslim. Faith is like a honey- moon considered a part of life (with all pleasure and no work), the deeds are the works after the honeymoon. Deeds, which a person produces, can reach out beneficially to help others and thus 'heat' the segments of society and its preservation. Thus only Islamic salvation -will be a grace to believers and all the people around the globe through the reach of good deeds. How do we know it works? Because Islamic societies do not suffer from such social disorders and family disintegrations. Because Muslims have to commit themselves to doing good deeds. It can be verified: 1. Many of the worst crimes are committed under the influence of alcohol, spending family money on alcohol, leaving the wife and children to starve, mistreating and beating them savagely, etc. Islam prohibits drinking totally and punishes those who drink, This translates to no drunkards in Islamic societies. 2. Fornication, adultery, prostitution or any other promiscuous behaviors are all publicly and sternly punished in Islamicsocieties. No escape from punishment. Consequently, all problems relating to promiscuity and sexual perversions which cause broken marriages, illegitimate children, illicit companionships or affairs are nonexistent in Islamic societies. Marriage is a normal and holy state of life in Islam. No Muslim stays unmarried or single to chase after their lust.' Islam considers sexual meandering the greatest contributing factor to the collapse of the family. Consequently, marital behavior is keyed into the man/woman's life integrally so the society stays chaste. Women are never raped, or allowed to prostitute in the most humiliating and dehumanizing manner. 3. Juvenile delinquencies are a big problem in the west. It is non- existent in Islamic societies. Because it is only a fungus outgrowth of the disintegration of the family and a rebellion against the institution of authority. 4. Loves for all-father, mother, grandmother, grandfather, children, and etc. surround the Muslim home, casting out all loneliness and feeling of depression. Unless a Muslim loves his/her God, their parents, grandparents, and other human beings and creatures, he is not a Muslim. Muslim hospitality and generosity to non-Muslims is exemplary. God created the universe and subjected everything in it for man and womankind, and to build not destroy the earth. God also chartered physical and moral laws. If we follow them we will be successful in this life and in the hereafter, if we do not we will be losers. Those who do not submit to God will be charting their own destruction by allowing Satan to guide them on a one way highway to hell. All the prophets were Muslims and they delivered the same message. God does not contradict himself and the prophets (PBUT) did not change his message, some individuals did, which resulted in division in the religion and led through time millions astray and in delusion. The current decadence may lead rapidly to total collapse at which time it will be too late to do anything. We owe it to ourselves, our children, future generations, the nation and the world, which will evaluate us by what we planned for them. Let us complete this journey by accepting the oneness of God, undivided, and unfractured. Let us submit to God, let us believe in all his prophets, let us follow what was revealed to Muhammad (PBUH) as God asked us to do. If we do that God will guide us to success in this life and in the hereafter. We must revert to God and His comprehensive final revelation and believe in what was revealed to Muhammad (PBUH) the seal of the prophets and who was sent to all man and womankind to improve their character and to remove injected pollution of the earlier revelations. God cited numerous examples in the Holy Qur'an of past civilizations that enjoyed sophisticated technologies and quality of life, but did not last long. Because they were not obedient to his revelations We urge and invite the people of this land to reflect on the current status of the social disorders and to sincerely study Islam and Islamicsalvation before it is too late. God will not send another prophet. To God, religion is Islam, (The Invitation, Vol. 2 No. 2, June 1985).