In the 1800’s, men and women didn’t have time to ponder the mystery of their existence. They had lifespans that rarely exceeded 50 years. They raised families that often had 5 or more children. Children learned what they could before they were old enough to work along side their parents. It took weeks to communicate with other towns and cities.
Communities had to be self sufficient, and to work together. Everyone knew everyone else. They managed to farm, build, work 14-16 hours a day, and still had time for church on Sunday. It was a less civilized time than today, but also a more civilized time. Everyone was much nicer to each other, talked to each other, helped each other.
And look what they did. They conquered and colonized a continent, then created the greatest free nation on Earth. They industrialized and lead the way in steam power and manufacturing, setting the stage for the nation to become the most powerful industrial, technological and economic force the planet has ever seen.
Today, people live into their 90’s and 100’s, yet never seem to have time for family or community. Children attend school for 12 or more years, yet seem to have less common sense than ever. People work at seemingly meaningless endeavors, while less that 1 percent of the population produces the food for the other 99.2 percent. People would rather text than talk, and they are so wrapped up in their own “search for personal meaning”, they have no clue how to interact with each other. There are more broken families than whole, and no one seems to have time to raise their own children, insisting that the schools/government do it instead. There is no sense of community, no cohesive whole, no national pride or ambition.
Islam places tremendous emphasis on the social aspects of life. Islamic practices are not only confined to the spiritual dimensions, but also to the social environment. For example, Islam encourages people to perform their daily prayers in congregation. Praying in congregation strengthens the ties between people by giving them the opportunity to interact with one another and discuss their issues in a religious compound.