Chapter 1 196
Chapter 1
A universal system needs to be objective and equally applied to all people regardless of their social status, race, color, and religion.
The principle of equality in dealing with peoples of different colors, socioeconomic status and cultures is absent from the dominant ideologies of today's world. The Indian society has suffered from a rigidly applied caste system for many centuries: some people are looked at as gods (avatars) while others are being treated as no more than slaves.
Although Christianity has seldom been applied as a system for living, it contains, among its contemporary teachings doctrines that can be viewed as discriminatory. The teachings of the Talmud (the basis of contemporary Judaism) looks at the Jews as privileged over other people (the gentiles). The list could be expanded to include the communist slogan of equality all people are equal, but which, in reality, means that some are more equal than others. Capitalism, as applied in
several Western societies, IS not geared theoretically to establishing equality, since it encourages a rich vs. poor division. Socialism, which in theory is supposed to ameliorate the excesses of capitalism and communism, has in actuality highlighted the indigenous faults of both of these economic systems. At the same time, it could not prove itself as a more appropriate alternative. Thus, of all the existing ideological systems, Islam remains the only option that appeals to all because it respects the rights of all people and regards all humans as members of one nation living under God (Allah), in peace and harmony in spite of their many differences.

1. Christianity and equality
In this section, I will examine some of the teachings of Christianity in order to determine if such a view could appeal to all people regardless of their differences. To be objective, reference will be drawn from the Book of Christianity, The Bible, in order to find out if the message of Christ (Pbuh) was for the world or limited in time and space to his people, the Israelites. The message Jesus (puh) received was limited to one nation.
According to Matthew, Jesus (puh) stated clearly in his instructions to his disciples not to spread the message beyond the tribes of Israel.
According to Matthew (10:5,6): ,Go not into the way of the gentiles, and into any town of the Samaritans enter ye not: but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel . 4
In another reference, according to the Bible, such a statement is clearly limiting the scope of carrying the teachings of Christianity to the Jewish people only, by the Prophet of God (Jesus, puh) who was sent with guidance to people with no discrimination. However, we find in the Bible another incident that is narrated about Jesus (puh):5
4 Quotes were taken form The Holy Bible The Gidons International in the British Isles, Western I-louse, George Street, Luttersorth, Leics, LE 17 4EE.
5 Matthew 21 - 26

Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon's possession.
Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.
He answered, I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.
The woman came and knelt before him. Lord, help me! she said.
He replied, "It is not right to take the children's bread and toss it to their dogs."
In these biblical excerpts from the Bible, Jesus (pbuh) has clearly stated that his message was to be spread among the people of Israel only and, not to the people of all nations. However, as a Muslim who believes that Jesus Christ (Pbuh) was a great Messenger of Allah, I am convinced that Jesus never said the underlined quote from the Bible (Matthew 15:26).
2. The Jewish position towards other nations.
Although Judaism may not be proposed as an internationally recognized system, the Jewish lobby plays a very effective role in shaping US foreign policy; especially those in Israel's interest.
The Jewish book of guidance , the Talmud,6 ranks the Jews higher than all other people. Jews are considered the chosen people of God. They are semidivine, and the multitude gentile (non-Jewish) surrounding them are considered unclean and sub humans. The Talmud has always been the preeminent legal authority for the Jews.
The reason that Jews give for their claimed selection by God and for the uncleanliness of the
6 The modern Jewish writer Herman Wouk states very clearly in his book; This is My God that: "The Talmud is to this day the circulating as heart's blood of the Jewish religion. Whatever we are, Orthodox, Conservative, Reform or merely spasmodic sentimentalists, we follow the Talmud. It is our common law." This statement was presented by T. Pike in his book Israel Our Duty •• Our Dilemma. 1984, P. 54.

gentiles is that they were not present at Mt. Sinai.
In the Talmud3 we read: When the serpent came into Eve he infused fitly lust into her... When Israel stood in Sinai that lust was eliminated, but the lust of idolators, who did not stand on Sinai, did not cease. (Abdah Zarah 22b)4
Let's look in the Zohar, where the verse from Genesis was interpreted by the Jewish rabbis: ''Now the serpent is more subtle than any beast of the field, etc." The interpretation was:
More subtle that is towards evil; 'than all the beasts', that is, the idolatrous people of the earth. For they are the children of the ancient serpent which seduced Eve. (Zohar 1: 28b)
3 References to the Talmudic verses were taken from the Talmudic authority Rev. TIleodore W. Pike. in his book Israel Our Duty .. Our Dilemma. Big Sky Press, 1984.
4 Compare with what the Qur'an says about Adam and Eve in 7: 19-25.

As a matter of fact, non-Jews (gentiles), whether Christians, budhists or Hindus are not considered equal to the Jews in any way; the Jewish doctrine regards them as if they were nonhumans.
The following excerpts from the Talmud would make any human being puzzle over the way they disparage other people:
A gentile. . . is not a neighbor in the sense of reciprocating and being responsible for damages caused by his negligence; nor does he watch over his cattle. Even the best gentile laws were too crude to admit of reciprocity. (Bek. 13b)5
Christians (called 'heathens' in the Talmud) were not exempted from the hatred and the distrust of Jews:
5 This is what Allah says about the application of justice:
o ye who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah, witnesses in justice,
and let not the hatred of others to you make you depart from justice.
Be just: That is nearer to piety. And fear Allah. For Allah is wellacquainted with all that you do. (The Qur'an 5:8). Where a suit arises between an Israelite and a heathen, if you can satisfy the former according to the laws of Israel, justify him and say: 'This is our law'; so also if you can justify him by the law of the heathens justify him and say (to the other party): "This is your law"; but if this can't be done, we use subterfuges to circumvent them. (Baba Kama 113 a)

The Jewish Encyclopedia summarizes opinions of the sages about this law by stating:
The Mishnah ... declares that if a gentile sues an Israelite, the
verdict is for the defendant; if the Israelite is the plaintiff, he obtains full damages6.
There are numerous citations in the Talmud where non-Jews have been considered dirty or unworthy of living. It goes to the extent that such
6 The Jewish Encyclopedia. cd. Cyrus Adler, Isidore Singer. New York, London: Funk-Wagnalls, 1901-1906. P.620.

people are not even worthy of being accepted in their religion, even if they desired. The Talmud prohibits, under the threat of death, the teaching of the Torah to any gentile:
Hence the Talmud prohibited the teaching to a Gentile of the Torah, "the inheritance of the congregation of Jacob .. " R. Johannan declares if one dared to do so 'such a person deserves death.7
Certainly such a system, of an extreme discriminatory nature, was not designed to be a universal way of life. No wonder many Israeli leaders do not value the lives of non-Jewish people. Menachem Begin's response to the world outrage over massacres in Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps in Lebanon is reflective of this attitude:
7 T. Pike, cited on page 61 that this infonnation is from the Jew. Encyc., Article, "Gentile" p. 623, where the reference is Sanh. 59a, Hagigah 13a.

Goyim [meaning gentiles] are killing Goyim and they came to hang the Jews.8 Somebody might say that current Judaism is not built on such radical or racial ideas. Let's listen to the defense of the leading Israeli authority as to what they have done in the Lebanon. One is really stunned by the Talmudic manner in which they spoke. An example of this was seen in the way -Begin arrogantly informed the Americans about the massacre he had committed: "We have no duty to explain our actions to others only to ourselves.9" In other words, the Jew is above criticism by a gentile.
8 T. Pike, P. 53.
9 T. Pike, P. 72. For more information about Jewish atrocities look at the New York Times, August 5,1985, P.I, and The National Geographic, April 1983, P. 514.

A recent issue of Sunday reported that Moshe Antelman of Rehovot, Israel - a rabbi and a chemist - had developed a bullet that contains pork fat. Why did he do so? Sunday stated:
Antelman, a rabbi and a chemist, developed the lard-laden ammo for use against devout Muslims, who believe any contact with pig flesh robs the soul of its chance to enter paradise I 0 ... The good rabbi has offered his innovation to West Bank settlers, and he also hopes to interest the Pentagon in this refined form of military pork. 11 This is just one example of how the Jewish elite and leaders value people of other nations.
10 This is not true. Muslims are only forbidden from eating pork.
According to The Old testament, consumption of pork is forbidden: (Leviticus II: 7-8) And the pig(s) ..... You must not eat their meat or touch their carcasses; they arc unclean for you. Is it proper to refer to this chemist as 'a rabbi' a man of God?
11 Sunday. August 28, 1994, P. 18.

3.'The, Socioreligious, system, of Hinduism Similarly, in no way can Hinduism be adopted as a universal way of life, because of its racist apparatus incorporating a discriminatory caste system which is an integral part of this religion.
The caste system divides the Hinduconfessing society into four groups:
H. The Bralunans or the learned and the priestly class.
b. The Kashattriyas or the fighting and ruling class.
c. The Vaisyas or the trading and the agricultural people.
d. The Suddras (the untouchables) or the lowest caste whose only business is to serve their superiors. 12
12 Gustave Ie Bon. Les Civilization de l'lnde. P. 211.

Each caste is worlds apart from the other castes. This is one of the most outrageous manifestations of inequality anywhere now being practiced. It is one which even the present political system of India which would repudiate.
This system was brought into the teachings of Hinduism during the time of Manu, during the heydays of the Brahmanic civilization. Since then, it has become an integral part of the Hindu socioreligious system. In fact, it has become more or less a hereditary system subjugating the majority of the population; by which the minority ruling class seeks to maintain its purity. Gustave Ie Bon quotes some of Manu's teachings as saying:
This law gave to the Brahmans the distinction, superiority and sanctity which raised their status equal to that of the gods... Anyone who is born a Bralunan is the noblest creature on earth. He is the monarch of all the created things and his dufy is to defend the Shastras, the Hindu teachings that provides legitimacy to their power13.
The teachings go on to grant more rights to the Brahmans at the expanse of all the other people:
Whatever is on the earth belongs to the Brahman, for he is the highest among all creatures. All things are for him.14
One might ask, ,what about the poor Sudras?, As a matter of fact, the Sudras in the Hindu society have no rights wh.atsoever. They are considered of a lower rank than the animals.
This is what the Hindu teachings say about them:
A Sudra should never acquire property, even if he has the opportunity, for in so doing he is causing pain to the Brahmans.
Nothing can be more honorable for a Sudra than to serve the
13 Ibid., P. 211.
14 Ibid., P. 21 I.

Brahman; nothing besides this can earn him any reward. . . A Sudra who assaults a higher-caste man is liable to lose the limb with which the assault is made ... 15
It goes on unceasingly to the extent that one finds it, incredible and condescending to the whole human race. For example:
The atonement for killing a dog, a cat, a frog, a lizard, a crow, an owl and a Sudra is the same.16
No sensible human being would believe that it is possible to accept or adopt such an unjust system as a way of life.
This extremely discriminatory system is not a thing of the past, but also it has its manifestations on present day politics. A new form of apartheid is creeping into India's political life. This time it is targeting the 120,000,000 million Muslim minority - the largest minority in the world.
I5 Ibid., P. 21 J.
16 Ibid., P. 212.

4. Capitalism
Capitalism is not a religion but it has become a way of life that millions of people aspire to endorse and once achieved, to defend it with great enthusiasm. Millions of people have been fooled by the symbols of capitalism 17 , such as the Statue of Liberty welcoming every newcomer to the land of happiness and opportunity.
However, it seems as if many people have forgotten the decades of slavery, the plantations, the back-of-the-bus theory. Few capitalists seem to be bothered by the dire consequences, the escalating rates of crime, rape, child molestation, battered women, drug addiction, covert and overt discrimination, homelessness, and old people's calamity.
In fact, Capitalism basically results in economic inequality, particularly for minorities and non-producing segments, such as the children
17 According to George J. Church, in " The Other Arms Race," Time Magazine, Fcb. 6, 1989: In 1986, 18,153 people in the U. s. committed suicide. (p.20).

and the elderly. Because of the great changes that have taken place in America during the last one hundred years, many social problems have emerged. The huge corporations, invasion of' family farms and small family-centered enterprise have resulted in many socioeconomic tensions.
Although the capitalist system as a way of life has provided materialistic gains for a small number of individuals, large segments of the society suffer, among them the senior citizens, single women, children born out of wedlock, and the non-white minorities. It has become a common scene in the downtown areas of American cities to notice many elderly people among the homeless. A number of American sociologists forecast that the problem of the elderly will become even more severe in the near future. 18
18 Sullivan, Thompson, Wright, Gross and Spady (1980), in their book Social Problems: Divergent Perspectives. (John Wiley & Sons, New York), discuss the great changes in the socioeconomic life of Americans:
The social status of the eldcrly has declined because thcy no longer hold positions of economic power; their children are no longer dependent on them for their own livelihood; and they no longer perform tasks that are viewed as essential for the group's welfare (P.340).

The declining birthrate, along with the increasing number of the elderly, indicates that such trends will continue. The elderly will soon constitute a large proportion of the society. In 1900, people over 65 constituted 4 percent of the American population (3 million people); by 1976, they comprised over 10 percent of the populace (22 million). It is projected that by 2030 there will be more than 50 million people over 65 in the United States - about 17 percent of the population 19 . This report was prepared 18 years ago. What kind of social problems is American society facing now and what will it face in the future? Can the existing system solve the problem of the elderly?
There is no point in discussing the topic of equality and communism here, since it has been discredited and abandoned by its own II! According to the American Institute of Gerontology, Information on Aging (Wayne State University / University of Michigan, no. 10, October 1,1976).
The or itations and practitioners. It brought little or no good to the nations that adopted it at the point of the gun, only the ills of poverty, backwardness and misery.
5. Islam and universal' equality
Any system that assumes universal applicability should appreciate its followers, potentials and recognize their achievements, regardless of their ethnic, racial, geographical or socioeconomic backgrounds. In other words, such a system should only evaluate their potential (or their accomplishment), and not what they have naturally been endowed with in terms of such as, their color, race, country of origin, etc. Islam views people as equal. In fact, in Islam inherent differences have a greater wisdom that is worthy of appreciation. The religion which views that all people are equal in the eyes of their Creator is Islam:
And of HIs signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the diversity of your languages and colours. Indeed, in that are signs for those of knowledge. (The Qur'an 30:22)
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said:
"No Arab has any superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a white man have any superiority over a black man, or the black man any superiority over the white man.
You are all the children of Adam, and Adam was created from dust\earth."20
Islam rejects all forms of superiority which based on racial, geographical, economical, linguistic or other inherent factors. It considers righteousness and good conduct as the basis for recognition.
In relation to this principle, Allah The Almighty says:
O Mankind! We have created you from male and female and made
20 Narrated by Bayhaqi and Bazzaar.

you peoples and tribes that you may appreciate one another Indeed, the most noble of you in the Sight of Allah is the most righteous [ie, conscious of him]. Indeed, Allah is knowing and [all] Acquainted. (The Qur'an 49:13)
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: "All people are equal just like the teeth of a comb." Prof. Ramakrishna Rao, a professing Hindu,21 quoted Sarojini Naidu, the greatest Indian poetess, who spoke about how equality has been practiced in Islam by saying:
It was the first religion that preached, and practiced democracy; for, in the mosque, when the adhan (the Muslim call to prayer) is sounded and the worshippers are gathered together, the equality of Islam is embodied
21 Professor of Philosophy, University of My sore, India.

five times a day when the peasant and the king kneel side by side and proclaim, "God alone is great."
The great poetess of India continues:
I have been struck over and again by this indivisible unity of Islam that makes a man instinctively a brother. When you meet an Egyptian, an Algerian, an Indian and a Turk in London, what matters is that Egypt is the motherland for one and India is the motherland for another. 22
Thus, some systems promote religious exclusiveness and discrimination (Judaism, Hinduism, Christianity) and yet others encourage economic; consequently social, inequality (capitalism, communism and socialism). Only Islam is an all-embracing and eqalitarian system.
This conclusion leads us to a second comparison between the ways of life in regard to tolerance.
22 K.S. Ramakrishna Rao. Mohammad: The Prophet of Islam. AIFurqan Agency. P. II.