Language, ethnicity, nationality, religion, caste and creed are all contingencies. For a person, any of these could well have been different from what they are now. We are completely disenfranchised when it comes to choosing what language will be our first, what religion will be passed on to us or what region we will be born in. These things just happened, happen and will happen to happen. What follows then is that these factors must never become elements of arrogance for us. There’s no reason they should come into the way of what we all as humans share with each other. Humanity.
Before being Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus, or belonging to any other faith, or speaking any language or being born in any piece of land, we are humans and humanity is our first religion. It’s not acquired and unlike the religions we follow, doesn’t come down to us after having been passed on by our parents and social and cultural milieu we are born and brought up in. But rather it’s innate and we’re entitled to it like a birthright. Whatever we follow afterwards is accretion and artificiality to this natural religion we all belong to. One can dispense with the conventional religious upbringing one has been brought up with, but one can’t do away with the religion of humanity which essentially constitutes one’s very personality. Language is a piece of equipment. Being human is an identity. Nationality is a sojourn. Humanity is a fixed abode. Religion is chants, rituals and rites played at tongues and platters. Humanity is blood, arteries, veins and the heart. Ethnicity is tribal. Humanity is global, nay universal.
Now what I want to arrive at is many a thing that issues forth after we have accepted humanity as our first common unifying ground, and made it the basis for our being proud. It should be simple and acceptable to all the people who have liberated themselves from religious, sectarian, schismatic, social, sexist, and patriotic biases. Today there is more dire need than ever of tolerant and peaceful world. If we are to live peacefully and be accommodative of each other, we must value and glorify our natural relationship with each other. And that is being fellow human beings. It’s a simple idea that each one of us should internalize and live by.
Whatever miseries we face today across the globe can be wiped out once we realize that there is this common thread of humanity that runs and unites the whole human lot, otherwise diverse in many ways. It’s in realizing to be part of the brotherhood that is not consanguine, but human. It’s to look at things objectively after having taken off linguistic, ethnical and religious spectacles. It’s to condemn, speak against and protest any unfortunate and reprehensible incident, act of terror, any crime against any person of any race, sex, or religion perpetrated by whomsoever of whatever religion, faith and race. This sense of mutual solidarity should be driven by credos which have to be pure humanitarian; unspoiled and free of any personal proclivities or vested interests. It follows naturally then we must free ourselves from the shackles of partisanism and rise beyond the parochial prejudices gripping us, and condemn whatever is against humanity, even if it goes, which it oftentimes does, against our own make up and interests.
The recent outbreak of Covid-19 has made it all the more clear to all nations around the globe that the maps they’ve drawn are just lines. This enemy of ours has waged war against not any nation or ethnicity, but against whole human race. What this disease has taught us is that humans should invest in only those things that prove beneficial to humanity as a whole. Perhaps it’s the enemy that has united us. And it has provided us with the opportunity to defeat it. We’ll defeat it. We must.
Ubaidullah Pandit has studied Law and Information Technology