A single Ummahby nuhO humanity! We have created you from a single male and female and have made you into nations and tribes that you may know one another (not that you may have pride over one another). Verily the most honourable of you in the sight of Allah is the one most pious.
Canada has experienced throughout its history, times of upheaval as a result of prejudice. This prejudice was justified on the basis of race, gender, social class, and a host of other distinctions that make one group of people 'different' from another.
Often times, these prejudices were enshrined in the common laws of our country, and were enforced with empirical brutality. Many people in our history were jailed and persecuted because they dared to oppose this social evil. At the very least, whole groups of people endured social and economic discrimination simply because of who they were.
In his day, The Prophet (saws) struggled to overcome the social and religious prejudices. Muhammad (saws) taught: 'The parable of the Believers in their mutual love and mercy is like that of a living body; if one part feels pain, the whole body suffers in sleeplessness and fever'
Such a universal brotherhood was championed by the Prophet's companions after him, including the rightly guided caliphs: Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Ali (RA).
When Ubadah ibn as-Samit (RA) arrived with a Muslim delegation to Muqawqis, the Christian patriarch of Alexandria, Muqawqis exclaimed:
"Get this black man away from me and bring another to talk to me. How can you be content that a black man should be the foremost among you? Is it not more fitting that he be below you?"
"Indeed no." Ubada's comrades replied, ‘For although he is black as you see, he is still the foremost among us in position, in precedence, in intelligence and in wisdom; for darkness is not despised among us'.Verily, the Believers are but brothers (to one another).
Today we Muslims need to ask ourselves, are there barriers in our hearts that keep us from reaching out to people because of social, racial, and even religious prejudices? If so, we need make tawbah and ask for the forgiveness of Allah (swt). Then with Islamic wisdom and strength to begin the process of tearing them down. Breaking down barriers, after all, should be one of the marks of those who choose to follow the sunnah of The Prophet (saws).Indeed this Ummah of yours is a single Ummah and I am your Lord, so worship Me alone.
I will end this two pence in a khutbah with a dua'a:
"O my Lord, do not let our hearts deviate from the Truth now that we have been guided; but grant us Mercy from Your very Presence, for You are the Giver of bounties without measure."Rabbana la tuzigh quloobanaa, ba’da ith haday tanaa, wa hablanaa milla dunka Rahma. Innaka antal Wah-haab.Footnotes
2) Sahih Muslim