“There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often.” [33:21].
No matter what stage of life we are going through, or whatever roles we are trying to fill: be it be as father, husband, son, friend, leader and others, we will always find guidance in the life of our beloved Prophet(peace be upon him). One such area of guidance is for the da’ee – people who call muslims and non muslims alike to the path of the Allah. In this paper, we will see glimpses of the best methodology, examples and guidelines for a da’ee from the Meccan era of the Seerah. Here are the 10 lessons:
1. A Da’ee should teach the basics and work on the Emaan first:
Most of the verses revealed in the Meccan era dealt with issues of Tauheed: oneness of Allah, concept of worship, day of judgment, accountability etc. Later in the Medinan era, the detailed rulings were revealed.
This was done so that the new Muslims could have their hearts fully attached to the deen so that when the time came to implement a command of Allaah, they did it with no hesitation. Aisha (RA) commented “…If the first thing to be revealed was: ‘Do not drink alcoholic drinks.’ people would have said, ‘We will never leave alcoholic drinks,’ and …” [Bhukari]
People are more accepting of something if it doesn’t come in and demand a change in lifestyle immediately to something on the opposite side of the spectrum.
When we call people to Islam, we should focus on similar topics. We shouldn’t get into get into arguments about specific controversial rulings of Islam like polygamy, hijab, pork and wine. Similarly, when we teach our fellow Muslims, we should focus on purifying their hearts and increasing their Emaan, as opposed to “do this, this is halal, this is haram, don’t do this..” and so on.
2. A Da’ee focuses on creating a team of dedicated people:
Prophet (peace be upon him) did secret Daawah for three years. Also the pledge of Aqaba was done in secret. He established core group of Ansars first in medina and then told Muslims to migrate to Medina.
If you want to start an organization or dawah project, do not go out in the open and call people until you have established a strong core group. Go to people you know will sacrifice their time and effort. Also, try to start with the people around you. They know you best so they will be most likely to believe and help you. Even if the leader of the call is harmed, his followers will continue the obligation of calling others.
3. Da’ee makes use of all available resources even Non Muslims and other organizations:
Non Muslims are different in how each one of them deals with Muslims – we cannot simply say all are good or all are bad. People like Abu Talib, who gave protection to the Prophet (SAW) ,and Hisham bin Amr (who was instrumental in lifting the ban and boycott from Banu Hashim), played a key role in their support of the Muslims.
We should take advantage of the legal system and the environment we are living in. These days, da’ees should work with non profit and NGO organizations to fight against the bans, discrimination, and injustices against the Muslims.
4. Da’ee should always remember that guidance is from Allah:
The stern enemies of Islam, Umar (RA) and Abu Sufyan and others, enter Islam, and yet the strong supporter of the Prophet (SAW), his own uncle, Abu Talib died as a disbeliever. This clearly shows that the guidance is only from Allah. The caller to Deen, gives the message and then leaves the rest to Allah. If the person is not guided, then da’ee is not sad and is content with the decree of Allah.
5. Da’ee should focus on inviting the leaders, people in authority and those masses look upto:
When the Prophet (PBUH) arrived in Taaif, he went straight to the leaders. Generally, when giving dawah somewhere, one should meet with the leaders of the place because, with their support, the message will be passed along to their people. In our times, we should try to give the message of Islam to movie stars, sports players, pop starts and other popular personalities. People look up to them and if they accept Islam, others would be more inclined to do so as well.
InshaAllah, we will continue with the remaining Five lessons in our next post.
- The Quran: Saheeh International, AbulWasim Publishing House 1997
- Rajab Isaam, Arees Institute BA Program,USA: Class of 2009
- Yahya Abdulbary, Course: The Shepherd’s Path, NY, US: Almaghrib Institute.
- Dr As-Sibaaie Mustafa, The Life of Prophet Muhammad Highlights and Lessons, Riyadh: International Islamic Publishing House 2004
- Abdullah Daud, Course: Seerah 101, Islamic Online University