Unity, the Force of the Nation
The main axes of the subject:
– Disunion damages.
– Brotherhood criterion.
We will explain the significance of unity in constructing and strengthening the nation as well as the damages that can result from disunion.
Exporting the Subject:
Unity is a Divine Grace.
“And hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves; and remember with gratitude Allah’s favor on you; for ye were enemies and He joined your hearts in love, so that by His Grace, ye became brethren; and ye were on the brink of the pit of Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus doth Allah make His Signs clear to you: That ye may be guided.”1
“Be not like those who are divided amongst themselves and fall into disputations after receiving Clear Signs: For them is a dreadful penalty.”2
The above verses interpret the following summary: All of you, O Muslims, must hold fast together and cling on to the religion of Allah, which is Islam. Never be divided from this religion to which Allah (The Exalted) ordered you to commit as well as commit to the group, and harmonize to obedience with adherence to this religion. Then, remember how you were divided in that past, but he joined your divided hearts to Islam. Hence, they were cleaned from hatred and grudge and you’ve become friendly brethren after you’ve been disputing enemies. And he saved you from the fire of division and took you to the haven of unity through his messenger and holy book.3
The damages that can result from disunion:
The second verse above interprets the following summary:
Be not like those who were divided because of animosity and disagreed because of the religion after they have been showed the ways and reasons. Those will suffer greatly from weakness, humiliation and disgrace. They will be snatched by the domestic and foreign and will be despised by the nations in this world and their strength will be broken. Besides, they will suffer greatly in the afterlife as a punishment for their division and disharmony after they have been showed the reasons and signs. The verse indicates the forbiddance of disagreement in religion, because it is ugly and banned.”4
Allah (The Exalted) said: “Muhammad is the apostle of Allah; and those who are with him are strong against Unbelievers, (but) compassionate amongst each other.”5
We can understand from this verse that those who are with Allah’s messenger (s.a.a.w.) are the ones who regard him as a good paradigm and they obey him and adhere to his commandment and proscriptions. They unite around him and are merciful with each other. Their enemy is one and they unite like one front against it.
“O ye who believe! Why say ye that which ye do not? Grievously odious is it in the sight of Allah that ye say that which ye do not. Truly Allah loves those who fight in His Cause in battle array, as if they were a solid cemented structure.”6
Those who believe in the Quran as their holy book and in Muhammad (s.a.a.w.) as their prophet – the Muslims – they unite as brethren regarding their causes as if they are solid cemented structure held strongly together.
This meaning was confirmed by the words of Commander of the Faithful (a.s.) when he said:
The People are two kinds: either a brother in religion or a peer of yours amongst the creatures.”7
We mentioned that the interpretation of the verse “Hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you)…” means that the rope of Allah is the religion of Islam.
The aforementioned explanations lead us to an outcome of inescapable facts to which we must hold. These are:
1- The religion at Allah is Islam, which means believing in the Quran as a book and in Muhammad (s.a.a.w.) as a prophet.
2- The criterion of brotherhood amongst Muslims requires mercy amongst each other and unity in the way of the causes; and that the enemy is one, against which Muslims must unite.
3- One of the meanings of believing in Islam is this unity that cannot linger from the fact of faith. “And hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you),” “Be not like those who are divided amongst themselves and fall into disputations after receiving Clear Signs: For them is a dreadful penalty.”
4- This nation could never have united and obtained its pride and sovereignty above other nations without this great religion. “And (moreover) He hath put affection between their hearts: not if thou hadst spent all that is in the earth, couldst thou have produced that affection, but Allah hath done it: for He is Exalted in might, Wise.”8
6- In addition, there exists within the nation’s concord its pride, sovereignty, and dignity. And on the contrary, there exists within its dispersion and division its disgrace, rendering its aspirations wasted and lost. “And obey Allah and His Apostle; and fall into no disputes, lest ye lose heart and your powers depart…”9
– Unity is a legal obligation at the present time:
Imam Khomeini (RIP) said: “Muslims must be one hand against the tyrants.10
The concord of Muslims and their unity should take place without any racial discrimination relating to nationalism, language, race and color… Imam Khomeini (RIP) says on this issue: In Islam, race, language, nationalism, and dominion do not matter; all Muslims – Sunnis and Shia – are peers and equal brothers regarding the Islamic attributes and rights.”11
This issue must not confine to only speeches, statements and words, after which Muslims maintain their dispersion and division. The Imam adds: “Do not call for unity using numerous words while abandoning the quest in the way of achieving it. You must practically unite because you are brothers.”12
The issue that brings Muslims together under one flag is unity. The Imam says: “All Muslims are equal brothers, neither one of them can separate from the other. They all must join together under the flag of Islam and the flag of unity.”13
The aim of Islam cannot be achieved without unity. The Imam says: “We can achieve the Islamic noble aims within the shade of unity and discipline.”14
We can face the entire world under the shade of unity and we can achieve victory as well. The Imam says: “If Muslims were one hand no one could have faced them.”15
He says in another occasion: “As long as you are like the one body, no one can defeat you.”16
On the opposite bank, the enemies will work on sowing the seeds of discord among Muslims and they will always gamble in the way of weakening and dividing them in order to rule them. Imam Khamenei (Long live the imam) says regarding this issue: “Our enemies depend on the points of discord unlike our aims of strengthening the points of accord around which we must unite rendering the enemy lose the chance of seeping through our ranks in order to saw the seeds of discord and dispute with an aim to disrupt the nation.”17
– Preserving unity is legal for all categories:
Imam Khamenei says: “Preserving unity is the foundations on which stands the legitimacy of the stances, negatively or positively. This is because unity is the primary legal obligation.”18
1- Surat al Umran, Verse 103.
2- Surat al Umran, Verse 105.
3- Majma’a al Bayan, by al Tabarsi, Vol. 2, P. 356-357.
4- Majma’a al Bayan, by al Tabarsi, Vol. 2, P. 359.
5- Surat al Fateh, Verse 29.
6- Surat al Saf, Verses 2-3-4.
7- Nahjul Balagha, wisdom 53.
8- Holy Quran: Surat al Anfal, verse 83.
9- Holy Quran: Surat al Anfal, verse 46.
10- Book al Kalimat al Qisa’ar (short words), issued by the Imam’s legacy organizing foundation, P. 133.
11- Same source
12- Same source, P. 137.
13- Same source, P. 139.
14- Same source, P. 134.
15- Same source, P. 135.
16- Same source, P. 134.
17- Hadith al Wilayah, issued by Al Wilayah publishing house for culture and media, P. 137.
18- Same source, P. 195.