If you live in a western society, such as Canada, America, England, and so on, be aware that some scholars have said that, for people living in these societies, da’wa is fard ‘ayn–an obligation on each and every Muslim. But don’t be scared–because the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “By Allah, if Allah were to guide one man through you, it would be better for you than a red camel.” [Saheeh Bukhari and Saheeh Muslim] Better then a shiny red Ferrari!
And, in these societies, what do people think of Muslims? By and far, they think we’re backward, oppressed, terrorists. Many of them know less about Islam then what you’d learn at one halaqah.
So what can you do about it? Be prepared. Prepare a five minute basic da’wa speech, and practice it.
Why? Because whether you go to school, work, to the mall, to the restaurant, you’ll engage with non-Muslims.
And they’ll ask you questions. Questions like why you grow a beard, wear the hijab, don’t shake hands with women, pray five times a day, eat with your right hand. All kinds of questions.
And if they do, this is your golden opportunity to explain about Islam! And you should explain tawheed, because all of Islam springs from that. And some of these people, this might be the only chance they have to learn about Islam. Take advantage of that, and explain it to them!
Your da’wa speech should go something like this:
“Well, let me tell you about Islam. We’re the purest monotheistic religion. We believe in one God, who sent many Prophets, from Abraham and Moses and Jesus to Muhammad, the last. Our book is called the Qur’an …”
Add to it, remove to it, as necessary. If they’re asking a fiqh question, you might want to mention that Allah is the law-maker, and that everything the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said or did, we take as proof–because Allah authorized him, when He said:
Translation: O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you. And if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger, if you should believe in Allah and the Last Day. That is the best [way] and best in result. [Surah An-Nisaa, verse 59]
THEN you can dive into the specific details of their question–but keep it brief, and conclude it with something tawheed based.
Why is this important? In a couple of minutes, you’ve likely given them more knowledge of Islam than they’ve learned in years. You gave them the core–tawheed, belief in Allah, and following the Prophet–and also answered their question. Who can argue with that!
And don’t feel bad if they ignore your speech and focus on their question. That’s natural. But don’t worry–they heard, and the knowledge is there, lurking in their minds, until Allah makes them remember.
What other things are important to put into (or leave out of) the five-minute da’wa speech? What are some of your experiences with this? Post them in the comments insha’Allah and share the ‘ilm!
Fiqh of Da’wa, by Muhammad Alshareef.