Hawzah News Agency – One of the special features of the Shari’a is the simplicity and the balanced nature of its rulings, a feature which renders them easy to understand. It might be said that this feature is one of the most important factors in the penetration and spread of Islam among diverse peoples and nations of the world. As regards the worship of God, Islam offers a pure and clear concept of Divine Unity, far removed from all ambiguity or sophistry. The Sura al-Tawhid (also called al-Ikhlas), alone, bears witness to the truth of this assertion. Likewise this sacred Book places such emphasis on the principle of piety in its consideration of the spiritual rank and station of man, that it constitutes, in itself, a means of restoring to man all his most noble qualities: the nobility of man being brought to full fruition by his relationship with the divine. In the area of practical rulings, we see the way in which Islam prohibits all forms of hardship and injury; indeed, the Prophet makes himself known as one who brings an ‘easy’ law: ‘I have come with a law that is easy (sahla) and tolerant (samha).’
Impartial and objective scholars—even amongst the non-Muslims—acknowledge that the most important factor in the rapid spread of Islam was the clarity and comprehensiveness of its guiding principles and its rulings. For example, the famous French scholar, Gustav LeBon writes: ‘The secret of the advance of Islam resides in its extreme simplicity and ease. Islam is free of all those qualities which the healthy mind finds impossible to accept, and which other religions have in abundance. You could not conceive of a religion with simpler principles than those of Islam, which assert: God is One; all men are equal before God; by performing certain religious duties man attains felicity and Paradise, while violation of these duties leads to Hell. The clarity and ease of Islam and its rulings considerably facilitated its progress throughout the world. More important, though, was that strong faith that Islam casts into the hearts of its adherents, a faith to which no doubt can have access. Islam, just as it is the religion most disposed to scientific discovery, is also the greatest of all religions in respect of building upon the foundations of the past, and thereby fostering refinement of the soul and character of men.’
Ayatollah Jafar Sobhani, Doctrines of Shii Islam, A Compendium of Imami Beliefs and Practices, Translated and Edited by Reza Shah-Kazemi, published by I.B.Tauris Publishers, london • new york 2003.