All the teachings of Islam are based on two basic principles – worship of Allah and service of men. Without putting both of these principles into practice, there can be no true fulfillment of one’s religious duties. In its followers, Islam inculcates the spirit of love and respect for all human beings. By serving human beings on the one hand they please their Lord, and on the other they achieve spiritual progress for themselves. According to a hadith, you should be merciful to people on earth and Allah on high will be merciful to you. In this way Islam links personal salvation to serving others. One can receive Allah’s reward in the Hereafter only if one has done something to alleviate the sufferings of mankind. According to another hadith on the Day of Judgement, Allah will say to a person, “I was ill, but you did not come to nurse Me.” The man will reply, “Allah, You being the Lord of the universe, how can You be ill?” Allah will answer, “Such and such servant of Mine was ill. Had you gone there, you would have found Me there with him.” Then Allah will say to another person, “I was hungry, but you did not feed Me.” The person will reply, “Allah, You are the Lord of the worlds, how could You go hungry?” Allah will say, “Such and such of myservant came to you, but you did not feed him. Had you done so, you would have found Me with him.” Then Allah will say to yet another man, “I was thirsty, and you did not give Me water to drink.” That person will also say, “Allah, You are the Lord of the worlds, how could You be thirsty?” Allah will say, “Such and such servant of Mine came to you, but you did not give him water to drink. Had you offered him water, you would have found Me there with him.” From this, we learn the Islamic principle that if someone wants to find Allah, he shall first have to make himself deserving of this by helping the less fortunate and the needy. This act becomes a means of spiritual progress for him. And there is no doubt about it that it is only those people who have elevated themselves spiritually, who will find Allah. This culture of mercy and compassion approved of by Allah is not limited to human beings, but extends to all other creatures too. One who is cruel to Allah’s creatures risks depriving himself of Allah’s mercy.