By Kazi Wadud Nawaz
Qur'anic call to mankind for faith is, in
essence, a call towards knowledge for understanding the ultimate nature of
things. This call has been given by the Holy Qur'an right from the beginning
till the end. Qur'anic call towards 'Taqwah' is also a call towards knowledge
and divine light.
The Holy Qur'an says,
"This is the Book, in it is guidance
sure, without doubt, to those who fear Allah." [Al- Baqarah: Verse 2:2].
‘Taqwa' is the spiritual key for believers
that opens up the kingdom of the Qur'anic knowledge and divine light. ‘Taqwah'
is the greatest divine blessing springing up as a spiritual fountain right from
the faith of believers that manifests in absolute obedience to divine laws and
authority at every stage of life.
The meanness in man's character that
manifests in the form of sensuous and material interests constitutes the animal
part of human nature as an expression of shame and humility in the face of
superior status of mankind as Allah's representatives on earth. Clothes cover
up the shame of private parts and ‘Taqwah' as divine raiment covers the shame
and meanness in human character.
‘Taqwa' as a spiritual asset for mankind is
an integral part of active Qur'anic morality.
Passivity in the name of ‘Taqwah' is not permissible in the Holy Qur'an.
‘Taqwa' on the part of a believer means to actively perform duties assigned to
him by Allah free from any threat or intimidation from any worldly authority. A
Muslim blessed with ‘Taqwah' fears Allah for His sovereign authority of
Justice, and at the same time he loves, respects and puts ultimate trust on His
divine attributes of mercy and forgiveness as the last resort for spiritual
salvation. He leads his life strictly in accordance with divine rules and
regulations and abstains from any activity that contravenes those rules.
Fear of Allah and fear of any worldly
authority that violates divine guidance cannot go together. Total obedience to
divine laws to the utter disregard of all ‘Taghuty' authorities violating the
universal balance of divine justice, is the real spirit of ‘Taqwa' or
In this connection, in order to have an in-depth
definition and objective of ‘Taqwa', we may reflect on following two Qur'anic
verses 84:6 and 90:4, that say:
"O you man! Verily you are ever toiling
on towards your Lord painfully toiling, but you shall meet
Him."[Qur'an:84:6]. Also, "Verily, We have created Man in to toil and
In view of the above two verses, we may
conclude that ‘Taqwa' is the physical, moral and spiritual endeavour on the
part of mankind towards moulding of the rational part of the human character
for attaining perfection as the representative of Allah on earth and getting
closer to Him. The Qur'anic verse:7:26
has clearly declared the raiment of ‘Taqwa' to be the best for mankind.
The verse says:
"O you the Children of Adam! We have
bestowed raiment upon you to cover shame, as well as to be an adornment to you,
but the raiment of righteousness (Taqwa) - that is the best. Such are among the
signs of Allah, that they may receive admonition." [Qur'an: 7:26].
‘Taqwah' covers the shame of animal instincts,
infuses and upgrades the rational elements in human nature, and acts as a
shield to safeguard humanity against evils and impending divine punishment on
the Day of Judgment.
The Verse: 27:53 says,
"We saved those who believed and
practised righteousness (Taqwa)."
The above verse proclaims a divine promise
for supporting and safeguarding the people practising piety or ‘Taqwa'. The
entire history of Islamic civilisation bears testimony to this historical
truth. The first generation of Muslim Ummah including caliphs and companions of
the Prophet (pbuh) were the shining stars of righteousness (Taqwa) that led
Islam to the pinnacle of glory and prosperity.
subsequent generations of leadership gradually deviated from the path of
righteousness, bogged down in the mire of self-interest, corruption, and luxury
that continued for the last few centuries inviting a freight-full destiny of
the modern era.
we look at the present precarious state of leadership of so-called Muslim
countries particularly that of the Middle-East, we will realise the extent of
their derailment from the path of righteousness.
of the leadership has gone down to the fathomless depth of moral degeneration.
The historical downfall of Muslim civilisation painfully proved to be directly
proportional to its rate of derailment and detachment from the path of
righteousness. The Muslim Ummah of the present era can regain its lost honour,
authority and glory only through the unconditional practice of righteousness.
The honourable rank and position were attained by the Muslim community in the
past through righteousness and can only be regained through practising it in
The Holy Qur'an and Allah's Messenger
(pbuh) have repeatedly stressed on proper utilisation of ‘Taqwa' as the most
powerful instrument for reshaping human nature, remoulding morality and
spiritual horizon of the believers. In
the final analysis ‘Taqwa” is the
spiritual rope extended by Allah
and His Prophet (pbuh) to the Believers to
hold it fast for success in this world as well as in here-after.
May Allah bestow His Blessings of ‘Taqwa'
on us and protect us from the evils and divine punishment! Ameen
(Published in the Daily Sun, Dhaka on
O ye Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover your shame, as well as to be an adornment to you. But the raiment of righteousness,- that is the best. Such are among the Signs of Allah, that they may receive admonition! (7:26)
Raiment of (TAQWA) righteousness! What a beautiful way of putting across that righteousness will protect us from shame and also be our adornment on the Day of Judgment! The context of wearing modest clothes has been used to drive home a much higher truth!