Devotional — Truth: The basis of human success

Published 4:22 pm Friday, May 31, 2024

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I recently read in scripture an interesting passage. It described in a few words the Almighty’s requirement for human success. It admonishes us that as surely as time passes, humanity is lost except for those who have faith, do good deeds, and encourage one another to be truthful and patient. (Qur’an 103). 

Truth has always been valued in American Society. We promise truthfulness in our oaths, before our testament in legal matters, and interpersonal relationships between family and friends.  We were taught, and we teach our children, “Honesty is the best policy.”

Since honesty is so much a part of our lives, we seldom give thought that truthfulness is a divine injunction on man. This idea is expressed in Zechariah 8:16. “These are the things that you shall do; Speak you every man the truth to his neighbor: execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates.” In John 8:32 we find, “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”  

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Lengthy historical reflection is not required to understand the importance of honesty in our social, political, and interpersonal relationships. During the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, the subjugation of women was the rule rather than the exception. Men, falsely claiming superiority over women, systematically restricted them to child-raising and domestic responsibilities. The Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 began shedding light on this human injustice. As truth became manifest, equity and justice for the rights of women, became part of our nation’s moral consciousness.

A similar analysis of the history of Asian minorities, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, and African Americans provides us with kindred insights. The oppression of the human potential of one group by another is only possible when our creation, as equals in the face of the Almighty, is denied. 

America is populated by multiracial, ethnic, and religious communities all of whom are equal in the sight of The Almighty.  Our success as a body politic should be predicated on common societal beliefs, norms, and values; not the subjective truths of an avarice minority. Success in life should hold identical meaning for all.

There will always be those who challenge the need for nationally accepted standards. Therefore, it falls on God-Conscious men and women to uphold the Divine injunction of the importance of truthfulness in every human interaction and champion the cause for justice and equity for all.

Qadir Abdus-Sabur, Ph.D. is an Imam at the Islamic Center of Prince Edward. His email address is