IMPORTANCE & SIGNIFICANCE OF ISLAMIC CIVILIZATION
‘Civilization’ comes from the Latin word ‘civil’ which means ‘universal’. The
word civilization means growth, achievements, and a manner that forms a well-
mannered personality and society that shape a country.
Civilization is the manifestation of beliefs in every aspect of human life.
Thus, the Islamic Civilization can also be defined, namely the manifestation of
Islamic faith (tawhid) in every aspect of Muslim life.
Islam is complete code of life. Allah says in Quran: “Verily the religion with Allah is
Islam does not allow any racial, linguistic or ethnic discrimination; it stands for
Characteristics of Islamic Civilization (with explanation)
Civilization provides us a comprehensive manifestation which has been based on
Tawhid, the most important characteristics of Muslim society, according to
Sharia, it means “to submit or to confess the Lordship of Allah.” Allah is the
owner of sovereignty. Qur’an says: “Blessed is He(Allah) for whom
sovereignty is in His hand.” [Al-Mulk: 1]
Risalat is to hold belief that Allah has sent Prophets for the guidance for
whole humanity. Muslims regard Adam (A.S) as the first Prophet and Hazrat
Muhammad (S.A.W) as the final chosen Prophet of Allah. In Surah 33, the
Quran makes the following statement: “Muhammad is not the father of any of
your men, but is the Messenger of Allah and the seal of the Prophets (Khatam
The other believes are belief in Devine Books, Angels, and The Day of
Cleanliness & Purity
Cleanliness and purification is one of the great privileges of Islam. It has evolved a
wonderful system that encompasses Muslim life on individual and social levels.
Islam places great emphasis on cleanliness, in both physical and spiritual terms. In
the Holy Quran, there are a number of verses which shed light at the importance of
cleanliness: “Truly, Allah loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those
who keep themselves pure and clean.” [Al-Baqarah: 222] According to Hadith:
“Cleanliness is half of faith.”
Islam gives equal rights to all, rich and poor, noble and ignoble. The basic principle
on which people are differentiated in Islam is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an as:
“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into
nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of
you with Allah is that (believer) who has al-taqwa [i.e., is one of the muttaqoon or
pious]. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” [Al-Hujraat: 13]
The importance of brotherhood in Islam cannot be overstressed. It is not
permissible for a Muslim to sever relations with his brother for more than three
According to Hadith: “It is sufficient evil for a Muslim that he should look down
upon his brother. The life, wealth, honor of a Muslim is inviolable by another
Islam is an institution of justice and moderation. Islamic system is based on justice.
If there are tears for the oppressed, then there are swords for the oppressors. Allah
stresses the importance of justice in the Holy Qur’an at various places: “Be just:
that is nearest to piety.” [Al-Maida: 8]
Commanding Good & Forbidding Evil
Commanding the proper and forbidding the improper is one of the most important
Islamic principles, stressed again and again in Qur’an and Hadith. The Qur'an says:
“Allah does command your justness, goodness and liberality to the near ones and He
does forbid you shameful deeds, impropriety and rebelliousness.”
Tenants of Islam, namely: Shahada, Salah(Prayer), Saum(Fasting), Zakat, and Hajj,
play an important role in convincing a person to do good and stop doing evil.
Social & Ethical (Moral) Influences of Islamic Civilization
Social influence is defined as change in an individual’s thoughts, feelings, attitudes,
or behaviors that results from interaction with another individual or a group.
Social influence of Islamic civilization is defined by the following types:
One basic element in the value system of Islam is the principle of equality or
equity. This value of equality is not to be mistaken for or confused with
identicalness or stereotype. Islam teaches that in the sight of Allah Almighty,
all people are equal, but they are not necessarily identical. There are
differences of abilities, potentials, ambitions, wealth and so on.
Influence of Belief in Tawhid
This belief produces in man the highest degree of self-respect and self-
esteem. The believer knows that Allah alone is the Possessor of all power,
and that none besides Him can benefit or harm a person, or provide for his
needs, or give and take away life or wield authority or influence. This
conviction makes him indifferent to, and independent and fearless of, all
baseless powers other than those of Allah.
Everyone has the Right to Worship
Islam’s contribution to human rights is best appreciated when viewed
against the backdrop of world history as well as the realities of modern
times. Worshipping Allah is a comprehensive concept within Islam. A Muslim
can be engaged in worship throughout the day, be it at home, work or
anywhere else regardless of any economic and social disparity.
In Islam equality and freedom have a solid base. If it gives importance to
preservation of physical health, it also stresses on our spiritual
enlightenment and moral uplift. If it ordains the offering of prayers, it also
orders paying zakat (religious tax). If it allows acquisition of personal
wealth and property, it also forbids taking undue advantage of ownership
and damaging the interest of other people.
When Imam Ali was told by the people about the piety and devotion of a
person offering his prayers, he asked about the intention and the character
of a person.
Hence it means that if a person is a devout worshipper of Allah, we should
judge him by his views and behavior.
Dignity of Women
Islam has empowered women with the most progressive rights since the 7th
century. In Islam, women are not inferior or unequal to men. Allah devotes
an entire chapter of the Quran, to women. Islam proclaims that all human
beings, men and women, are born in a pure state. The goal of every Muslim
is to preserve this purity by shunning evil tendencies and beautifying their
inner being with virtuous traits.
The Islam instructs both Muslim men and women to dress in a modest way.
Men’s Dress: Wearing the jilbab, izar (loin-wrap), thawb (long cloth),
`imama (turban), jubbah (coat or mantle), sirwal (baggy pants) and so forth
is of the Prophet's Sunna of dress.
Women’s Dress: For women, al-khimar, is considered by some to be
obligatory in Islam, as the Qur’an states “Tell the believing women to put
their khimar over their bosoms”, all the major Arab translations and
dictionaries agree that “al-khimar” means a veil or scarf that a woman uses
to cover her head during prayer, and “over their bosoms” implies women
should cover their private parts. Islam also instructs the women not to
reveal any of their adornments (beauty spots) except what is normally
apparent (face, hair lower arms and lower legs etc.).
Influences on Architecture
Islamic architecture encompasses a wide range of both secular and religious
styles from the foundation of Islam to the present day, influencing the
design and construction of buildings and structures in Islamic culture and
beyond. The principal Islamic architectural types are: The Mosque, the Tomb,
the Palace, the Fort, the School, and urban buildings.
Agriculture and Industry
Islamic teachings advocate for the prosperity of the earth. Islamic lands to
productive use by planting crops. There are hadiths that recommend to grow
crops as in this hadith: “If you heard that the Antichrist has come out while
you’re planting the seeds of dates so do not hurry to fix it, because there’s life
after that for men.”
Eradication of Superstitions
Superstitions are incorrect beliefs and practices that do not have a logical
basis or any connection with real life. Regardless of race or religion,
superstitions are present in many societies. The Prophet (S.A.W) fought
against superstitions in almost all of his actions. He (S.A.W) clarified that
there was no concept of ill omens in Islam and that belief in ill omens would
lead individuals to polytheism (shirk).
The Dignity of Workers
Labor has got lot of importance in Islam. In a tradition, Holy Prophet (S.A.W)
said “The Labor is the friend of God”, it shows that how much importance
Islam is giving to the Labor. Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) worked with
his own hands. He loved to work with his own hands for himself and for
others as well.
Ethical influence means persuading another that one can make that other more
uncomfortable than that other can make oneself.
Ethical influence of Islamic civilization is defined by the following types:
The chastity of Islam is what restrains the human behavior from
deteriorating into the following of despicable desires. It looks after one’s
interests, curbs one’s desires and prevents one from slipping into error and
lack of discipline. This chastity finds expression in human decency and there
appears in it purity, and human virtue. Guarding chastity from immorality is
one thing that can purify the soul, bring peace to nations, and maintain
Sense of Passion
This includes self-actualization that comprises morality, creativity, problem
solving, lack of prejudice, and acceptance of facts; esteem that comprises
self-esteem, confidence, achievement, respect of and by others;
love/belonging that comprises friendship, family, and sexual intimacy; and
safety that comprises security of body, employment, resources, morality,
family, health and prosperity.
Altruism or selflessness in Islamic terminology means to prefer or put others
before self. It can be traced in many verses of the Qur’an as well as the
hadiths of Prophet (S.A.W)
Islam places the highest emphasis on ethical values in all aspects of human
life. In Islam, ethics governs all aspects of life. Four aspects of Islamic Ethics
are: Quran, Sunnah, Ijma (consensus of Muslim Scholars), and Legal
precedents or Qiyas.
Clash of Civilization
Clash mean a situation in which people’s opinion or qualities are very different
from and opposed to each other. The Clash of Civilizations (COC) is a hypothesis
that people's cultural and religious identities will be the primary source of conflict
in the post-Cold War world.
Actually, clash of civilizations and cultures are former or created by the religions.
All human activities are performed as a result of faith or belief.
Difference between Islamic & Western Civilization
The first characteristic is the fact
that it is a civilization based on
Islamic faith, imbued with its
values and principles. It is a
monotheistic civilization based
on the belief in the oneness of
Allah Almighty, the Creator of
men and all creatures. It is also
partly a man-made civilization,
built on sturdy religious
background of faith.
Western civilization is based on
atheism in which religion is a
personal matter of everyone
which has no relation to human
The universality of Islam is an
undeniable fact, a characteristic
peculiar to Islam, the Righteous
Religion. Among the most
important signs of Islam’s
universality is the fact that it has
opened its lands to protect
minorities and has permitted
them to join the Muslims on
equal footing in all areas of
economic endeavor, whether in
agriculture, industry or
It has its boundary and limitation
and it cares only for European.
Generosity is the opposite of
stinginess. It stands for offering
money, food, or any other lawful
gaining out of one’s free will. It is
in fact the worthiest nature.
Islam teaches us to be a generous
civil. Prophet (S.A.W) said: “The
generous is close to Allah, close to
people, and close to Paradise. The
stingy is remote from Allah,
remote from people, and close to
Western civilization has a
prejudice and biased relations
with other communities and
nations of the world.
Well Balanced Civilization
Islamic civilization is a well-
balanced civilization which
secures fair equilibrium between
the materialistic and the spiritual
sides with exemplary moderation
that has always been a
characteristic of Islamic thought
and a distinctive feature of the
Islamic civilization throughout its
history. No excess, no neglect, no
ill-founded extremism, no
recklessness. It is a moderation
built on justice and equity.
It is the civilization that is purely
based on materialistic view point
and it has no moral or ethical
The fourth characteristic is its
being a perennial civilization
which will last as long as Islam,
because it is based on the very
principles of Islam which Allah
will preserve eternally. Thus, it is
a civilization with unique
characteristics, a civilization that
never withers away since it is
neither a national nor a racial
Western civilization has
civilization nor does it run
counter to human nature.
Objectives of Sharia
The five main objectives of sharia are:
1. Deen-Protection of Religion.
2. Nafs-Protection of Life.
3. Aqal-Protection of Intellect.
4. Nasab-Protection of Posterity.
5. Maal-Protection of Property.
Causes of Clash of Civilization
As is evident from the table above that Islamic civilization is a universal
civilization is based on the Devine Truth and its fundamental teachings have the
foundation of Islamic injunctions. On the other hand, western civilization has a
satanic foundation and is a false. Their foundation is based on material lust and
worldly desires. Thus, clash between them is eventual.
Islamic civilization is based on Islamic faith, infused with its principles and
Ironically, one of the problems that Muslim world has today is partly
because of its past. The fact that it was such a comprehensive and broadly
successful civilization for such a long time made the transition to having to
accept a Western-dominated world more difficult.
Enmity Towards Muslim World
The third cause between Western and Islamic civilization is enmity on the
basis of religion. They think, Muslims are rude, fanatic, fundamentalists, and
enemy of freedom.
World’s Leading Civilization
The Muslim world has fallen under terrible times over the past 400 to 500
years. There is the terrible shock and anguish of having been the world’s
leading civilization for 800 years or so, to find themselves subordinate,
weaker and left behind by a rising West, starting sometime in the 16th
Influences of Clash of Civilization
The real issues between the two civilizations are not that strong at all, but an
incident like September 11 has brought the two most extreme and radical elements
of the two conflict.
Muslims Are Under Siege
The present age can rightly be described as the age of the predominance of
Western philosophical thought and learning. The Western ideas about the
nature of man and the universe are strongly upheld all around the world.
Part of the difficulty today is that Muslims are clinging to the most
traditional forms of Islam as a kind of reaction to this.
Resentment Toward Religions
The western powers name their development a result of secular attitude, the
result of which is being seen in the youth of Muslim world. Muslims
generally are of the view that religion is a hindrance in their development.
They think that religion is only a name of some worship.
Sense of Inferiority
It is humiliating for the Muslims to think that the West is so far ahead in
everything and they are utterly dependent on the West and other countries
for everything. This creates a sense of inferiority.
It is one of the tragedies of the Muslim world that the followers of this
exquisite religion which is supposed to bring tranquility in the world are
labelled as terrorists and uncultured. The main reason for this is the
intellectual poverty and absence of human liberty in the Muslim world.
Renaissance of Islamic World
Muslim world is being propounded Islam as a system of life. Islamic
teachings are being projected as an all-embracing “system of life”. It is
impossible to consider an Islamic Renaissance without comparisons to the
Western experience. However, the Muslim world is not an empire. It’s more
a dispersion of states that share a communal identity, affiliation around
religion, and culture, but they’re not institutionally or economically tied and
so it is difficult to draw clear parallels.
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Importance & Significance of Islamic Civilizationeduca