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November 1, 2007
An Uphill Battle

by Gillette aka Hassan[uddin] Khaja

Most would agree that the ummah is not exactly in the state that it should be, in all facets of life. They would also agree that their lowly status has everything to do with the ummah's distance from Allah (Ta'ala). Thus, some more ambitious individuals leave the country to study the solutions to the problem so they can come back and implement that advice.

However, when these students come back, they realize that the majority of people who are endeavoring to do da'wah are people who haven't learned the solution from scholars of the Sunnah. Thus, these people who are in charge of the masjids and organizations make up a way to try to force some temporary change on the community.

Additionally, since the people running the masjids and organizations don't really know any better, they describe the students as being scholars without the right to do so. The students become comfortable with being described as such, to the point that they take to issuing rulings, even to the extent that they believe that their teachers - the ones to whom they went to seek religious knowledge - don't know better than them about the situation in which the student is ruling. This is in spite of the fact that the teachers probably have gone through worse situations than the student ever has. So the student becomes misguided and misguides others.

Doing da'wah is the way of the Messenger (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) and his followers, as Allah (Ta'ala) says:

"Say [O Muhammad], 'This is my way, I call to Allah upon certain knowledge - I, and those who follow me. I declare Allah free and far removed from all that they associate as partners with Him, and I am free of those who worship anything else along with Him'" (Yusuf 12:108).

Here, following the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is connected to da'wah. Thus, the only way to do da'wah is in the manner that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) did it.

I. PURITY OF INTENTION (AL-IKHLAAS):

Every good deed is conditioned on whether or not it is sincerely for Allah (Ta'ala), and da'wah is no different.

Allah (Ta'ala) commanded the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) to say,

"I do not ask you for any reward for conveying this Qur'an" (Al-An'am 6:90).

"I do not ask you for any wealth for my admonition." (Hud 11:29).

II. PATIENCE:

"Indeed Messengers were mocked before you, but those who mocked them were overtaken by the punishment that they mocked" (Al-An'am 6:10).

"Indeed Messengers were also denied before you, but they bore these denials with patient perseverance, and they suffered harm until Our help came to them" (Al-An'am 6:34).

Patience in the harms faced when doing da'wah is a sign of sound intentions. Conversely, lack of patience is a sign of flawed intentions. So the individual who calls sincerely for the sake of Allah (Ta'ala) knows that his reward is with his Lord. But the individual who calls for the sake of attracting people to his organization, or for the sake of attracting people to an individual naturally lacks patience with what harms may come, because he takes those harms as a sign that his short-term interests aren't being advanced.

III. KNOWLEDGE

"Say [O Muhammad], 'This is my way, I call to Allah upon certain knowledge - I, and those who follow me..." (Yusuf 12:108).

IV. BEGINNING WITH WHAT IS OF PRIMARY IMPORTANCE, THEN WITH THAT WHICH COMES NEXT IN IMPORTANCE, AND SO ON

Allah (Ta'ala) says,

"We sent a Messenger to every nation, ordering them that they should worship Allaah alone, obey Him and make their worship purely for Him, and that they should avoid everything worshipped besides Allaah" (An-Nahl 16:36).

Allah (Ta'ala) told Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam),

"We did not send any Messenger before you except that We revealed to Him that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah, so make all of your worship purely for Allah" (Al-Anbiya 21:25).

Furthermore when the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) sent Mu'adh to Yemen he (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said to him, "Invite the people to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and I am Allah's Apostle, and if they obey you, then teach them that Allah has enjoined on them five prayers in every day and night, and if they obey you, then teach them that Allah has made it obligatory for them to pay the Zakat from their property and it is to be taken from the wealthy among them and given to the poor" (Al-Bukhari)

The best example of da'wah is in the prophetic method (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam). He (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) remained in Mecca for thirteen years, calling the people to tawheed and away from shirk, before he told them about prayer, Zakat, fasting, Hajj, usury, fornication, theft and murder.

The things that are of primary importance in our time are the issues concerning the heart. And why shouldn't they be? If the heart isn't sound, then the rest of the body can't be sound.

The heart can't be purified unless it gains knowledge of faith. This is because faith is the knot that ties the heart to the religion. So if he is ignorant of the beliefs of the Muslim, or he isn't firmly established in those beliefs, then his connection to the religion is weak, and thus his religion is deficient.

However, what you have today is a million different organizations, all claiming to have the solution to the problems of the Muslims, but ignoring issues of the heart. How would the Muslims feel knowing that these different organizations don't care anything about the hearts, rather, the organizations want to bring numbers? How would the masses feel if they knew that the organizations don't care about properly preparing them for the day on which certain faith is the condition for the acceptance of actions?

V. ACTING IN ACCORDANCE WITH THAT WHICH HE CALLS TO:

"I do not wish to forbid you from something and then do it myself. Rather I only wish to rectify you as far as I am able" (Hud 11:88).

Allaah, the Most High, said to His Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam):

"Say, O Muhammad, indeed my Prayer, my sacrifice, my living and my dying are all purely and solely for Allaah, Lord of all the Worlds. There is no share in any of that for other than Him. That is what my Lord ordered me, and I am the first of this nation to submit to Allaah as a Muslim" (Al-An'am 6:162-163).

Allaah, the Most High, said:

"Who is better in speech than one who calls the people to Allaah and does righteous deeds?" (Fussilat 41:33)

Imam Ahmad reported that Abu Wa'il said, "While I was riding behind Usamah, he was asked, `Why not advise `Uthman?'
"He said, 'Do you think that if I advise him I should allow you to hear it. I advise him in secret, and I will not start something that I would hate to be the first to start. I will not say to a man, "You are the best man,' even if he was my leader, after what I heard from the Messenger of Allah .'
"They said, 'What did he say'
"He said, `I heard him say, "A man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection and thrown in the Fire. His intestines will fall out and he will continue circling pulling them behind him, just as the donkey goes around the pole.
"'"The people of the Fire will go to that man and ask him, `What happened to you Did you not used to command us to do righteous acts and forbid us from committing evil'
"'"He will say, 'Yes. I used to enjoin righteousness, but refrained from performing righteousness, and I used to forbid you to perform from evil while I myself did it.''''

This Hadith was also recorded by Al-Bukhari and Muslim.

Also, Ibrahim An-Nakha`i said, "I hesitate in advising people because of three verses:

"'Do you command the people with righteousness and forget yourselves' (Al-Baqara 2:44).

"'O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do. Most hateful it is to Allah that you say that which you do not do (As-Saff 61:2-3).'

"And Allah informed us that the Prophet Shu`ayb said,

"'I wish not, in contradiction to you, to do that which I forbid you. I only desire reform to the best of my power. And my guidance cannot come except from Allah, in Him I trust and unto Him I repent' (11:88)."

VI. GOOD MANNERS

Allah (Ta'ala) instructed Musa with regards to Pharaoh,

"And speak mildly to him that he might accept admonition or fear and obey Allah" (Ta Ha 20:44).

Allah (Ta'ala) also said,

"Go to Pharaoh who has transgressed all bounds in his haughtiness, pride and disbelief, and say, 'Will you not purify yourself from the sin of disbelief and be obedient to your Lord, so that you may submit fearfully to Him and obey Him?'" (An-Nazi'at 70:17-19)

Allah (Ta'ala) says, concerning His Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam),

"By the Mercy of Allaah you behaved with gentleness to them and had you been severe and harsh-hearted they would have left you and departed" (Aali Imran 3:159).

Allah (Ta'ala) says:

"Indeed you, O Muhammad (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam), are on an exalted standard of character" (Al-Qalam 68:4).

He (Ta'ala) says:

"O Muhammad, call mankind to the way prescribed by your Lord with the Revelation sent down to you, and admonish them with the examples and warnings which Allaah has provided in His Book, and argue with them in a way that is better" (An-Nahl 16:125).

It would be worth noting here that gentleness isn't always prescribed. Rather, gentleness and harshness should be held in balance. The shariah prescribes that both be used in balance. Sufyaan Ath-Thawree said that wisdom is to use harshness when necessary, and gentleness when necessary. However, Allah (Ta'ala) and his Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) placed more emphasis on gentleness because harshness is a natural, emotional reaction. Thus, the undisciplined heart will use harshness not because it is wise, but because it's the first emotional reaction to something displeasing.

VII. THE CALLER MUST REMAIN FIRM IN HIS EXPECTATION AND HOPE FOR GOOD:

Nuh (alayhi as-salaam) would not have continued calling his people to Allah (Ta'ala) for over 900 years had he lacked hope for good.

Also, when the troubles that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) grew, the angels offered to crush the people between two mountains. He replied, "No, I wish to have patience with them, hopefully Allaah will produce from their offspring those who will worship Allaah alone, not giving any partner to Him" (Al-Bukhari and Muslim).

It's sufficient proof for the prophetic method of da'wah that it was overwhelmingly successful, while all the da'wah movements that have emerged have failed. So whoever does da'wah, but doesn't base it on firm, Sunnah-based foundations, then their da'wah becomes an uphill battle.


of and relating to...
Mohammed Irfan Shariff said


"He said, `I heard him say, "A man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection and thrown in the Fire. His intestines will fall out and he will continue circling pulling them behind him, just as the donkey goes around the pole.
"'"The people of the Fire will go to that man and ask him, `What happened to you Did you not used to command us to do righteous acts and forbid us from committing evil'
"'"He will say, 'Yes. I used to enjoin righteousness, but refrained from performing righteousness, and I used to forbid you to perform from evil while I myself did it.''''

This Hadith was also recorded by Al-Bukhari and Muslim.

May Allah ta'ala protect us from fire and grant us the knowledge and will to protect ourselves in the dunya...

ameen

on November 6, 2007 8:16 PM
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