Islam and Security
One of the basic needs of man is to feel secure. The feeling of security is a psychological need which has to be satisfied so as to achieve the individual’s harmony and adjustment. As we know, human needs are of two types: physical and psychological. Physical needs include the need for water, food, and shelter. Psychological needs include the need for belonging, security, and affection. If a physical need is not satisfied, this usually causes harm to the body. On the other hand, if a psychological need is not satisfied, this usually leads to psychological disorders, lack of happiness, anxiety, and a variety of maladjustment symptoms.
Islam emphasizes the moral and ethical aspects, because man needs more than bread to live happily. Man needs internal harmony. Man is body and soul -- not body or soul only. Therefore, man needs what satisfies both his body soul.
Islam provides man with the feeling of security. This feeling of security is built in different ways.
This feeling will remove despair, hopelessness and anxiety, and will make man more hopeful, active, and self-confident.
Islam instructs the believer that Allah is the Most Merciful. This concept of Allah’s Mercy is essential in Islam. Allah’s Mercy affects the Muslim in two ways: by example and forgiveness. If Allah is the Merciful, man must be merciful. Man must be merciful to other persons of all races and all religions. He must be merciful to animals as well. He must be merciful to women, relatives and strangers, to parents and children, and to all living beings.
This atmosphere of mercy in Islam gives the person a feeling of security for one’s life, honor, rights and property, because mercy is something you give to others and others give it to you.
Allah’s Mercy works in another way, if man sins, he is not driven out of Allah’s blessings forever. In Islam, if you sin, the door of Allah’s forgiveness remains open. If you sin and then sincerely repent, Allah forgives. This formula of Allah’s Mercy and forgiveness keeps the Muslim secure about his relation with Allah and secure about his ethical code and moral future.
This concept of Allah’s Mercy and interhuman mercy is emphasized by Islam. When a Muslim eats, he begins by saying: “In the name of Allah, the Most Merciful and the Most Gracious.” When a Muslim reads the Quran or quotes the Quran he starts by mentioning Allah’s Mercy. In prayer, the Muslim mentions Allah’s Mercy a number of times every day.
Thus, the Muslim lives in an atmosphere of mercy, both physically and psychologically. A Muslim is led to feel that God is merciful and that his brethren are merciful. If a person’s relations with Allah and men are controlled by mercy, this will make him feel secure in the present and the future.
Belief in Allah
Believing in Allah gives the believer a sense of security. How can a person feel secure if he does not believe in Allah? Research has shown that mental disorders show up in non-believers more frequently and more severely than in believers. A non-believer is not sure about anything. He is not sure about his beginning, his end, or his goals. A non-believer is not sure about values, ideals, right, wrong, good, or bad. A non-believer is usually a sceptical person, anxious, disordered and hesitant.
On the contrary, a Muslim knows the origin and purpose of his life. He is one hundred percent sure about what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is bad. A Muslim is certain about himself, his life, the Universe, his social relations, his rights, and his duties. He is sure of his ideals and values.
Certainty of Values
The Muslim’s certainty about his values and ideals springs from the comprehensive code of ethics given by God to man. When a person has clear values, clear ideals, a clear beginning, and a clear destination, he feels secure, because he know where he is going.
Coming to more specific data, if we look at some non-Islamic communities, we find that there is a high frequency of persons with mental disorders. This is due to the lack of religion in those communities. With no religion, man feels lost, unsupported, and feels that he has no significant purpose. On the other hand, with belief in Allah, man feels secure, because he feels that he is guided and supported by Allah and that he has a significant purpose.
Thus, Islam provides man with the psychological security he needs throughout life, through the mercy and guidance of Allah.
When you know that Allah guides and protects those who believe in Him, you would feel secure.