Unity of Muslims as One of the Highest Virtues in front of Allah
The unity of Muslims is one of the greatest gifts given to us by Allah. No disputes and disagreements that are inevitable among people can lead us to abandon each other, to betray each other, to prefer foreigners who do not recognize the One God to our brothers who follow the path of Allah. Peace among all people and tolerance towards each other are the highest virtues of Allah, about which He speaks more than once in the Holy Quran. But in the same place in the Quran, Allah also says that a Muslim must first of all protect a Muslim and not be tempted by the promises of strangers. The unity of Muslims is our strength. The unity of Muslims is the power of Islam, capable of bringing the whole world to the true faith. The unity of Muslims is the strength of Allah.
There is a well-known story dating back to the First Fitnah, a quarrel in the Caliphate caused by a dispute between the Fourth Righteous Caliph Ali and the Syrian governor Muawiyah. Muawiyah, outraged at Ali’s delay in punishing the killers of his predecessor, Caliph Uthman, refused to swear allegiance to him until the killers were punished. Ali, on the other hand, demanded from Muawiyah obedience and oath of allegiance before he had the right to turn to him with any demands. In the midst of the dispute, the companions of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, Talhah and al-Zubayr, made their way into Basra and dealt with the murderers of Uthman, and then, intending to overthrow the unjust Caliph Ali, as they believed, they waged a war against Ali together with Aisha, the wife of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, lost the battle and were killed. Now Muawiyah was forced to continue their work and ensure the replacement of Ali by another elected Caliph. He was preparing for war, but his and Ali’s forces were clearly unequal.
Upon learning of this, the Byzantine Emperor Constans II decided to take advantage of the discord in the Caliphate for his own purposes. It must be said that the Caliphs Umar and Usman led a successful offensive against Byzantium and recaptured the territories belonging to it, in particular, North Africa, Palestine, Armenia, Cappadocia. In 642, Caliph Umar took Egypt from Constans II. The governor Muawiyah built a powerful fleet in Syria and inflicted constant defeats on the emperor Constans II at sea. He conquered the island of Crete from Byzantium, and in 654, in the naval battle of Lycia, he destroyed almost the entire Byzantine fleet. At the same time, the emperor himself miraculously escaped capture. Now Muawiyah himself was under threat of defeat from Ali, and the emperor decided that it was his turn.
Constans II sent a letter to Muawiyah: “We have received information that Ali is threatening you. Do you want me to send an army to you that will defeat Ali and bring you his head?” After reading this letter, Muawiyah clenched his cheekbones and narrowed his eyes. He ordered the scribe to start writing and with a slow pace of words which he hammered out he dictated the answer: “How dare you, worthless and despicable wretch, interfere in a dispute between two brothers? If you once again make yourself conspicuous, then it will be me who sends an army, my army to you. Its vanguard will knock at your gate while the rear regiments will still be waiting to start marching at mine. And then my soldiers will bring me your head, and I will give it to Ali.”