Taken from the discourses of Moulana Abrarulhaq RA
Success is the object of every person’s desire. If any person is given a choice between respect and disgrace, comforts and hardships, he would naturally choose respect and comfort. Similarly, we are more desirous of success for the simple reason that we are Muslims. (Because Muslims believe that success is dependent on Iman, it proves that they are more desirous of success).
The Principle of Success
Any person who affiliates himself to an organisation, institution, or governmental post, besides being obliged to fulfil the task assigned to him, also has to dress according to the status and position of his duty. For example, if a person joins the police force or post office, he has to fulfil the tasks entrusted to him and he also has to wear the uniform (which informs of his affiliation to that respective organisation and also classifies his status in that organisation).
Prosperity and success inevitably depends on the fulfilment of both requirements. Can he prosper by just wearing his uniform (an outward form of commitment) and not fulfilling his duties? Similarly, can he prosper by merely fulfilling his tasks without an outward sign of commitment and affiliation, ie. The Uniform?
Similar is the case of a soldier, he is required to be in uniform when on duty. If on a Friday the Imam rushes into the Masjid before the Khutbah, wearing only a trouser, people will immediately summon a doctor and the services of an ambulance. No matter how he tries to explain that his purpose of doing so is to educate the public that Salaah can be performed by wearing a trouser only. The point is that just as fulfilment of the duty is necessary, so is uniform, the attire which informs of the status and position of the person.
Purpose of a Uniform
The uniform is a symbol by which a person is recognised to be affiliated to a specific institution or group. It dispels the need for introduction, which is why a policeman and a soldier are recognised instantly. (In the case of these two a uniform prevents unnecessary obstruction in times of necessity because the uniform informs about their authority).
A Requisite of Islam
The question that arises is that since Islam is a complete way of life (encompassing every facet of human activity) as has been claimed in the Qur’an: “Today I have completed your religion for you.” (5:3), has it stipulated any specific uniform by which its adherent i.e. the Muslim can be recognised? A negative reply would constitute the incompleteness of Islam and eventually result in a lie being attributed to Allah (Allah forbid).
The truth is that Islam has established principles and a set of guidelines regarding every issue, but Muslims, have neglected the significance of the Islamic dress/uniform. This has subsequently resulted in them fulfilling acts of worship only. Others have justified their act by saying that internal commitment is sufficient.
A uniform is an outward symbol of commitment and affiliation. Similarly, the Islamic dress is a recognition symbol of a Muslim; hence its necessity is inevitable. Rasulullah, Muhammad Sallallahu Alyhi Wa Sallam has said: “Any person who haughtily covers his ankles with his Kurta, trouser or turban, Allah will not consider him with mercy (but with anger).” (Abu Dawood Mishkat, vol. 2, p. 374)
The significance of the action has become evident, hence considering the severity of opposing or contradicting it, it should be given its due importance and attention.