In a society where people have equal rights; right to vote, right to education, right to health, right to security, right to a good job; everybody who would work hard could do well. Everybody would thus be free to pursue happiness. This society would be more evolved than one where such equality of rights is not present.
In any case for equality of rights to exist at a societal level, equality of rights would have to be a value accepted by society.
In such a society however people could still view a relationship among individuals as being based on an [economic] transactional model where the value of a relationship is proportional to its benefit to the individuals. If however, society were to evolve to a higher value where a relationship among individuals were not viewed as a means [to success] but as a goal [of success] i.e. the milestones in the relationship become the milestones of success [in the journey to self-actualization], individuals would have to keep the “wellbeing of the other” close behind “the pursuit of one’s own happiness”.
Such a society would probably take upon itself the responsibility of ensuring the wellbeing of each of its members. It would require it to accommodate each subgroup even every member of the society. For such an accommodation to take place the society would have to create solutions to various problems. If such solutions were to become necessary for society then it would have to innovate and perhaps invent its way to these solutions. A society that took care of itself in this way would inevitably become a role model for other societies.
A society is however a group of individuals. Groups exist in many other forms such as a nuclear family, an extended family, a community, a nation, a religion and finally the whole of humanity. To reach equilibrium in a larger group is harder because of greater diversity. However the results of such equilibrium have to be proportionally significant. I think this partly explains why the Quran says [I have misplaced the exact reference – will put it here soon]: “Your creation and resurrection should be like the creation and resurrection of a single soul”.
For the whole of humanity to become a single soul; for every individual on the planet to be accommodated, humankind would have to answer many tough questions. When we have these answers we will achieve happiness in a way we have never experienced before.
The other side of this argument is however a little disturbing. This is the argument: for a group of any size, if the group were to not accommodate some of its members, the members that are left unsatisfied would emerge as a minority that would perhaps demand their rights [as a collective i.e. all the members of the minority] from the majority. Perhaps this is why the Muslims of India wanted a separate state. Perhaps this is why sects are born.
People inevitably rise when they feel they are being wronged. This continues until the larger group gives enough concessions to the smaller group leading to a state of equilibrium. Equilibrium is thus inevitable for any two conflicting groups. While the two groups may not agree with each other they tolerate each other’s existence. Unfortunately the process of adjustment to reach this equilibrium can be quite painful. [This is most evident in the case of the Middle East crisis.] Since equilibrium is inevitable it is in the interest of groups to readjust themselves in the least painful manner possible.
Equilibrium thus requires tolerance. If the whole of humanity were to tolerate its own diversity [and not fight proxy wars among itself] it would come closer to becoming a single soul.