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Approaches to Islamic Work

Approaches to Islamic Work part 1: General Precepts
 
 
Sheikh Muhammad b. `Abd al-`Azz al-Thuwayni
 
The various approaches that can be taken to call people to Allah are indispensable for Islamic work. As any rational person is aware, a goal cannot be reached without there first being a way to reach it. The Prophet (peace be upon him) used the various means that were available to him in his day. He declared the truth from the summit of Mount Saf. He presented his message in the markets and the meeting places of the tribes and the places where the rites of pilgrimage were carried out. In this way, his message got maximum possible exposure to the various Arab tribes.

An Islamic worker needs to know precisely what he is calling towards. Equally, he needs to know precisely the means he is going to use to carry out this task. A message cannot be conveyed without a means of conveyance. Therefore, anyone person who wishes to call someone else to an idea needs the following:

1. A purpose.

2. A means to achieve that purpose.

The purpose of Islamic work is to call people to Allah, either to believe in Him or to obey Him. The Islamic worker is required to adhere to the dictates of Islamic Law in undertaking this task. He needs, therefore, to be cognizant of the fact that matters of Islamic Law can be broken down into two broad categories:

(1) Acts of worship. These are the means by which our welfare in the Hereafter is achieved. These ways are dictated to us by the sacred texts in their essentials and in all their details. Allah says:
“Or do they have partners who established for them in their religion what Allah has not permitted?” [Srah al-Shr: 21]

(2) Transactions and customs. These are the means by which human welfare is achieved in this world. They include all interpersonal relationships, contracts, commercial activities, and the like. The basic ruling that should be assumed for such matters is that of permissibility unless there is specific evidence to the contrary. The proof for this is that Allah says: “Say (O Muhammad): Have you considered the provision that Allah has sent down to you and that you have declared of it what is unlawful and lawful? Say (O Muhammad): Has Allah permitted you to do so or are you fabricating a lie against Allah?” [Srah Ynus: 59]

On the basis of these principles, anyone who wishes to assert that something is an act of worship is required to produce evidence from the Qur’n and Sunnah to show that it is. It is not necessary, however, for him to produce evidence demonstrating that a certain worldly transaction or activity is sanctioned. By contrast, he must produce evidence only if he claims that an activity is unlawful.

Ibn Taymiyah illustrates this principle with the following examples:

If someone were to enquire with an Islamic scholar as to whether it is permissible for a person to traverse the distance between two mountains, the scholar would have to answer that it is. However, if the questioner were to specify that this activity is to be performed as an act of worship, just like when one performs the circuits between Saf and Marwah, the scholar would have to answer: “If it is undertaken for this reason, then it is unlawful and sinful and its perpetrator must be called upon to repent…”

Likewise, if the scholar were asked about a man going about bareheaded, and about wearing a waistcloth and an unsown cloak, he would have to say that it is permissible for a person to do so. However, if the questioner were to specify that this mode of dressing was being assumed as part of a sacred state, like that assumed during the Hajj, then the scholar would have to answer: “If it is undertaken for this reason, then it is unlawful and sinful…” [Majm` al-Fatw (11/632)]

The purpose of Islamic work is to call people to guidance and to what is best for them. Therefore, based on the principle outlined above, every practical means to bring about this goal falls into the realm of what is permissible as long as it does not violate an express prohibition of Islamic Law.

Ways and means within the sphere of Islamic work are what an Islamic worker takes recourse to in order to facilitate calling other people to Allah. These means are of utmost importance…. The enemies of Islam – those who are bent on corrupting the Muslims and on keeping non-Muslims from embracing Islam – work to either bring people into the fold of what they themselves are calling towards or to keep them in the un-Islamic state that they are already on. If we observe their efforts, we find that they employ numerous and varied means to achieve their purposes.

Let us look at one example. Christian missionaries operating in the Muslim world have an interesting way of familiarizing people’s minds to their message. They do so through giving names to people and places. Often, European names are encouraged for Muslim boys and girls. Place names and street names found in the Muslim world are often the same as those found in non-Muslim countries. Foreign names have become especially common now for Muslim girls. This makes such names familiar and pleasant to the Muslims, blurring the distinction between Muslims and non-Muslims and making the Muslim mind more conducive to accepting their ideas. Naming is something that falls within in the realm of norms and customs and we have already said that these matters are “public domain” so to speak. However, we must understand that for them the ends justify the means; and in Islamic Law, ways and means take the same ruling as the goals and objectives for which they are undertaken.

[The distinction between these two concepts is as follows: The idea that the ends justify the means amounts to permitting recourse to actions that are immoral and wrong if doing so brings about the desired results. This idea is rejected by Islamic teachings. By contrast, the idea that ‘ways and means take the same ruling as the goals and objectives for which they are undertaken’ implies that the means must be lawful and morally acceptable in and of themselves. Then, if the goals for which they are employed are also noble and good, the lawful means to achieve those goals remain noble and good as well. However, if the goals themselves are unlawful, then the means employed to achieve them become equally sinful.]

Choosing the right approach is one of the secrets of success. Many ideas have become widespread simply on account of the means used to promote them, though those ideas may have been very bad and foolish. By contrast, there are places where Islamic workers meet with very little success – though the message of Islam is true, harmonious with human nature, and suitable for every time and circumstance. The reason for this failure is often at least partially attributable to a poor choice of approach.

We have already mentioned the Islamic legal principle that “ways and means take the same ruling as the goals and objectives for which they are undertaken”. Taking this principle as a point of departure, we must understand the general guidelines that must be observed so that we do not fall into error in developing and employing various ways and means.

The two most important ground rules for determining the approaches that we may employ are as follows:

1. The approach must be permitted by Islamic Law. This permission may be explicitly given by the sacred texts or it may fall under the general juristic principle that the underlying assumption for all things is that they take the ruling of being permissible (mubh). Indeed, permissibility is one of the five legal rulings that Islamic Law can confer on an activity.

2. It must be acted upon in consideration of the good that can come of it. This means that it must be appropriate to the circumstances at hand. The good that will come of taking recourse to it must far outweigh any bad consequences that might possibly result from doing so. These considerations require a lot of forethought as well as a sincere heart.

We must keep these two principles at the forefront of our minds when developing and employing various ways and means for Islamic work. We can now begin to discuss some of these ways and means, which can be broken down into three broad categories:

1. Innate means: These are means that lie within the person who wishes to call others to Allah. They include qualities such as patience and fortitude and the ability to assess one’s own motives and to hold oneself to personal account. Included in this also is a person’s love for others and for their best interests. The Prophet (peace be upon him) exemplified this in his prayers when he beseeched Allah with the following supplication: “O Allah! Forgive my people, for truly they do not know.” [Sahh al-Bukhr and Sahh Muslim]

2. Ways and means that fall under particular jurisdiction
. There are some ways and means that are not to be undertaken by the general public. They are the exclusive jurisdiction of the Islamic state and can only be initiated and carried out by the proper authorities. It is the responsibility of the Muslim political authorities to uphold, defend, and disseminate the faith. For instance, the defense of the faith includes jihad, which is no doubt the exclusive jurisdiction of the state.

Likewise, Islam is both upheld and disseminated through the promotion of virtue and the prevention of vice. This activity is an aspect of Islamic work and was indeed one of the primary duties of the Prophets. Calling to monotheism is a promotion of virtue and prohibiting idolatry is a prevention of vice.

Allah says: “Those who follow the Messenger – the unlettered Prophet – whom they find written about in the Torah and the Gospel; he calls them to what is right and forbids them from what is wrong.” [Srah al-A`rf: 157]

The duty of promoting virtue and preventing vice must be carried out on different levels according to the steps outlined by the Prophet (peace be upon him) when he said: “Whoever sees a wrong act being committed should prevent it with his hand. If he is unable to do so, then he should do so with his tongue. If he is unable to do so, then he should prevent it in his own heart, and that is the weakest of faith.” [Sahh Muslim]

From this, we know that some aspects of enjoining virtue and preventing vice do not fall under the jurisdiction of the general public, especially when it comes to prevention of vice by force. If the general public were to pursue such a course of action, it would lead to violence and general anarchy. An official officer will carry out this duty in a way a volunteer will not be able to. The political authorities have jurisdiction over those they govern that cannot to be presumed upon by others.

3. Ways and means that are public domain.
These are the means that all people can take recourse to. This is what we shall be concerned with. There are countless means that we can take. Every era has approaches that are particularly suited to it that may not have been appropriate before and which may cease to be suitable in days to come.

Sheikh `Abd al-Rahmn al-Sa`d had some very insightful things to say about this point. In his day, he was asked about the lawfulness of using telegrams and cannons to announce the arrival of Ramadn. His reply was as follows:

In brief, notifying the public by way of cannon or telegram or other means of long-distance communication, it is an expression of what is agreed upon by the governing authorities. They are among the means of conveying the message so that people will have no reason to question and that instill confidence in the veracity of the report. Whoever has proper understanding about Islamic legal matters will not doubt the certainty of this. The only problem that someone might have is that such means did not exist in earlier times. However, this is no reason for hesitation on the matter. How many things have taken place that did not exist in earlier times but have become more necessary and more deserving of consideration than those things that had already been around? And Allah knows best. [al-Fatw al-Sa`diyyah (240-241)]

These general ways and means are what we may freely take recourse to. In order to do so, each of us must properly assess his individual capabilities. A person cannot have it always dictated to him what is best for him in his particular circumstances. Everyone has his own experiences and expertise to draw upon and everyone has a way that is best for him.

It is important for a person to understand his abilities and know what good he is capable of realizing for himself and for others. None of us should be like a hasty horseman who drives his steed to death before ever traversing any ground. It is therefore necessary for us, while discussing the ways and means of Islamic work, to point out that each person must use various means according to his knowledge and abilities. We are not talking here about formal academic qualifications, but the knowledge and abilities that a person actually possesses. A person cannot offer what he does not himself possess. Therefore, being properly qualified for the task at hand is a must. Every approach that we might opt to take has its own requirements. These may be with respect to knowledge, innate mental ability, or even physical abilities, depending on the situation.

The ways and means that can be employed for Islamic work are numerous and diverse. There are new approaches coming about all the time. We will look at some of them.

1. The written word:

People read. There can be no doubt about it. We cannot believe the popular claim that people have given up reading when we can see bookstores opening all the time and book fairs being held everywhere. This shows us that there must be readers out there. It it were not for readers, there would be no books.

Books are not all that people read. They read newspapers and magazines as well. What is important is that the written word must be read and that it is also something that can be preserved. People keep libraries in their homes. Even those people who keep books in their homes merely for decoration are inadvertently providing the visitors to their homes an opportunity to read. Haven’t we all experienced being to people’s homes where our host has left us for a while and we picked up a book or magazine lying about and started to read it?

The written word comes in many forms. Each has its own merits and unique qualities.

Books: Writing a book is a serious undertaking. A person should not write a book merely to write one and take up shelf space with it. An author needs to have a good reason for doing so. Hj Khalfah enumerates the reasons why someone should want to take the trouble to write a book:

The task of writing takes seven valid forms. No rational scholar would pursue any other. The first of these is a topic that no one has dealt with before and needs to be addressed. The second is a topic that has been insufficiently dealt with and needs to be supplemented. The third is something that is difficult to understand and needs to be explained. The fourth is something that is long and drawn out and needs to be abridged without its content being made to suffer. The fifth is a topic that is scattered about in different references and that needs to be compiled together in one place. The sixth is a topic that has been handled only in a disorganized manner and that demands to be arranged in a systematic and orderly manner. The seventh is a mistake hat needs to be corrected.

Every author who would write on a topic that someone else has already written about should make sure that his book provides at least one of the following five benefits: It should draw forth or introduce some idea that had heretofore either been problematic or had gone unnoticed. It should bring together some related ideas that had previously been kept separate. It should explain and clarify difficult concepts. It should present the material in a better, more organized manner. It should dispense with unnecessary material that unnecessarily draws the topic out. [Kashf al-Zunn (1/35-36)]

Islamic work is a business that we engage in with our Lord. It is not something we do for money. Worldly business is a competitive arena where only the fittest survive. Islamic work is different. If one of us sees that his brother has already carried out the task that we had wished to perform, we should praise Allah that the need has been fulfilled and look for some other contribution that we can make. It must not be the goal of Islamic workers to take to pieces or disparage the efforts of others. Instead we must lend our support, assistance, and encouragement.

Letters and mailings: Some organizations involved in Islamic work as well as some private individuals draft letters, often personally addressed to their recipients. This correspondence can indeed be on the level of a very direct personal interchange. For some people, letter writing is a hobby that they enjoy and people seek out pen pals from far afield for this purpose.

Pamphlets and booklets: These are short written tracts devoted to particular topics. They might discuss Islamic beliefs, some issues of Islamic Law, some points of morality, etiquettes, or some other topic suited to this format. Publications of this nature abound these days. From one angle, this can be seen as a good thing. It shows a healthy level of activity. However, there is a downside to it as well. For some people, booklets and pamphlets have become their only source of Islamic knowledge. People have begun neglecting the important source works from which the information in those pamphlets is taken.

SMS: One of the newest ways of disseminating the written word is the short messaging system that works via cell phone. If these messages are used properly, they can prove to be a very effective means of influencing friends and acquaintances.

Periodicals: Periodicals are of two kinds. First, there are journals, magazines, and newspapers devoted to Islamic issues. Contributing to publications of this nature is not problematic. Then there are magazines and newspapers that target a general audience. They are devoted to various topics. Contributing to such publications is generally a good idea. However, those who wish to do so should adhere to the following guidelines:

1. The place of publication of any contribution should be clearly predefined. Periodicals are of many kinds and it important that any contribution is only published in a suitable publication.

2. Another necessary condition is that no modification or alteration should be made to the contributed article that could in any way change the author’s intended meaning.

An author who wishes to write for these publications has to be able to put some vitality into his writing. We often find while reading articles about Islam that, in spite of their being well supported with references from the Qur’n and Sunnah, are quite weak in their presentation and fail to hold the reader’s attention. The readership has to see clearly how the references from the Qur’n and Sunnah support the point the author is trying to make. Muslim readers, for instance, already know the Qur’n and Sunnah and have direct access to these two sources. What they need to read are articles that will give them deeper insights.

The Internet: This is one of the modern means of conveying the message of Islam. Though it is a multimedia vehicle for information that can be used for the dissemination of audio and video materials, the written word predominates. The Internet can no longer be ignored. It has become indispensable.

It should not be viewed as something evil concocted by the West to corrupt the Muslims. That is a bad attitude to have. And why should we have such an attitude? Experience has shown us that the Internet is something that we can use to our advantage. If we turn our backs on it, we are wasting a golden opportunity for calling people to Islam.

Those who wish to engage in Islamic work using this medium should be people who have at least a reasonable degree of Islamic knowledge. They should also have the ability to discuss matters in a convincing manner.

The Internet accommodates articles of all lengths as well as dialogue. It is an ideal medium for the propagation of Islam. A Muslim needs only to put his trust in Allah and get involved.

2. The spoken word:

The spoken word can be heard on its own or it can be part of a broader visual experience. In either event, it can have a great impact on the listener. It all depends on the strength of the topic and the strength of the delivery. There are many ways that the spoken word can be employed:

Teaching: This can occur in the classroom, an informal study circle, or the local mosque. The teacher can have a great impact on his students – no matter who they are - as long as he takes their needs into consideration and speaks to them on a level that they can understand. He can inspire them and help to shape them, no matter how young those students might be.

`Amr b. al-`s joined a study circle that had convened near the Ka`bah. He learned that they had forbidden children from attending their circles. He said to them: “Do not do that. Though they may be the smallest people in society today, they will be its leaders tomorrow, just as we had been the least of our people at one time but now we are leaders of others.”

Ibn Muflih, after relating this event in one of his books, makes the following observation:

It is true what he said, without a doubt. Knowledge acquired while one is young is more firmly retained. Therefore, special attention should be given to the teaching of young students, especially those who are bright and alert and eager to learn. Their youth, poverty, or weakness should not be hindrance to our considering them and accommodating their needs. [Ibn Muflih, al-db al-Shar`iyyah wa al-Manh al-Mar`iyyah (1/244)]


 

A successful teacher is one who strives to open his students’ minds. He should take every possible opportunity to make them relate what they are learning to their Creator, regardless of the subject being studied. This should be one of the fundamental goals of teaching. Ibn al-Qayyim writes:

It is a blessing for a man to teach goodness whenever he can and impart advice to those who keep his company. Allah informs us about Christ (peace be upon him) that he said: “And He made me blessed wherever I was.” [Srah Maryam: 31] He meant that he was a teacher imparting goodness, calling to Allah, reminding people of Him, and instilling in them the desire to be obedient to Him. This is from a man’s blessings. Someone who is devoid of this trait is bereft of blessing, and there is no blessing for someone else in meeting with him or keeping his company. [Ibn al-Qayyim, Rislah il Kulli Muslim]

Public addresses: This is one of the oldest means of communicating with the public. There has always been a need for leaders and people of knowledge to address the public about what they need to know and what they have to do. Anyone who wants something from the people has to be able to address them.

Al-Jhiz observed that the length of these addresses has as much to do with the circumstances and the subject matter as it does with the audience being addressed. He noticed that the public addresses of the Arabs – regardless of whether they were nomads, tent dwellers, or city folk – could either be short or long. It all depended on the situation and the topic.

When Islam came, it added beauty and richness to public speaking. It infused it with the words of the Qur’n and the sayings of the Prophet (peace be upon him), which was added the stories and poetry of the Arabs.

Moreover, Islam instituted the public address as a form of worship for both the speaker and the listener by making it an integral part of the Friday Prayer. The Prophet (peace be upon him) emphasized its importance by saying: “Whoever so much as rolls a pebble under his finger (during the sermon) has committed a vain act.” [Sahh Muslim]

Since the listener has been obligated to pay close attention, he has a right to be listening to someone who has taken care with his topic and has taken both the time and the circumstances into due consideration.

Exhortations: The exhortation is a special mode of address, focusing on emotional impact. It requires a style of delivery that is extremely sensitive to circumstances. We can observe in the example of the Prophet (peace be upon him) how often he used to deliver sermons to his Companions and impart advice suitable for the particular time and situation.

Al-`Irbd b. Sriyah relates the following:

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) delivered a sermon to us one day after the Noon prayer. It was a very eloquent sermon that moved our hearts and left us in tears. One man said: “Truly this sermon must be a farewell. So what do you enjoin upon us, O Messenger of Allah?” [Sunan al-Tirmidh]

Generally an exhortation is delivered on an occasion where people are unprepared for it, like after the regular prayers or during some social gathering. Therefore, the person giving the sermon should take extra care to be considerate of the people’s feelings and avoid taxing their patience or boring them.

Lectures: Lectures differ from exhortations in that the people who attend them do so with the express intention of listening to them. Topically, it is more scholarly and generally of a longer duration. It is usually followed by an opportunity for the audience to ask questions, thus demanding from the lecturer a very high degree of preparedness, academically and psychologically. He has to be in a frame of mind where he will be able to respond effectively to the questions that are posed to him, and he has to be able to excuse himself from answering questions for which he does not have an answer.

Panel discussions: This is similar to a lecture except that there are a number of participants. This is a more exciting forum than a lecture since the discussion moves from one speaker to another. This distinction, however, can easily be lost if the host of the discussion monopolizes the floor and does not give the panelists sufficient time to speak.

Radio: The same guidelines that apply to periodicals apply here. This medium is has a broad public reach and is extremely important. A person wishing to participate in a radio broadcast should make sure that the type of program in which he is participating is suitable for his message so that it has the proper effect on its listeners. This is a decision that requires personal discretion.

Television: Participation in this audio and visual medium is not the unmitigated evil that some people think it is. Indeed, the message of Islam in this way can reach millions. The many opposing belief systems and moral values that are disseminated via the television pose a challenge for Islamic work that is quite demanding. Serious study must be undertaken in earnest to determine how to most effectively employ this medium to promote good and discourage evil.

Recorded media: Recorded lectures have been around for a long time now and Islamic cassettes have become an industry in their own right, with some foundations devoted exclusively to their production and distribution. The subject matter of these recordings varies from the thoroughly academic to emotional orations to Islamic poetry. Recordings are easy to circulate and easy for people to listen to. This makes them a very effective medium for calling people to Islam. All that is required is for us to work and make sure that good quality recordings are produced with appropriate content and then distributed in an effective manner.

3. Islamic organizations:

Whether the organization is academic or preoperational, the work of an organization has the advantage of being a collective effort. An organization can mobilize the efforts of the largest number of people so that each can make a valuable contribution. Thoughts and ideas can be pooled and improved upon. In this way, the skills and abilities of people can be employed to their maximum potential. The organization also makes the work being done less dependent on the individual. The work does not come to an end if one person becomes disinterested or unable to continue with it.

This type of work also enjoys the distinction of being managed, organized, and conducted with a degree of precision. It is not conducted in an offhand or arbitrary manner. Everyone works according to a pre-agreed work plan. Each person knows what he or she has to do and what he or she is entitled to expect. In this way, many conflicts are avoided. This is why an organization must have a board of directors to carry out its decision making so that decisions are not made arbitrarily. A properly managed organization is the most effective, beneficial, and error-free way of conducting Islamic work.

Included in these organizational efforts are summer youth camps and extra-curricular student activities that employ the idle time of our young people. These programs can be used to bolster confidence, teach skills, develop character, and show young people how to work together to serve society.

Our dealings with the people around us can be a very effective means of calling them to Allah. We shall discuss some of the ways we can do so.

1. Taking the message to the people:

First of all, we must go out to the people. Our objective is to bring the truth to all of Creation and we should see it as our duty to take the message to them. The Prophet (peace be upon him) went out to the seasonal markets of the Arabs, like `Ukz and Dh al-Majz, to call them to Islam. He went to the clan councils and gatherings of the tribe of Quraysh.

A person who wishes to go forth with the message must be armed with knowledge, faith, and the ability to handle a variety of circumstances appropriately.

2. Accepting invitations:

When a person feels that he has the ability to benefit the people, it is better for him to accept their invitation. Indeed, a Muslim has the right to have his invitation accepted, especially when the occasion to which the invitation is given is free from sinful conduct.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “There are five rights that a Muslim has upon his brother: His greeting of peace should be returned. If he sneezes, blessings should be invoked upon him. His invitation should be accepted. He should be visited if he becomes ill. And his funeral procession should be followed if he dies.” [Sahh Muslim]

However, it is imperative not to monopolize the conversation on such occasions and prevent others from having the opportunity to socialize with one another. Social gatherings are essentially held so that people can have the opportunity to get together. It is a time for friends and relatives to get reacquainted, often after not seeing each other for a long time. Therefore, when someone monopolizes too much of their time, it can turn them off from what he has to say.

In order for an Islamic worker to have a positive effect on other people, he has to make himself accessible. He must be easygoing in his manner and not hold himself aloof. He cannot be overly idealistic in his use of time and devote all of it to acquiring Islamic knowledge. If he does so, people will turn away from him and take their concerns elsewhere. What benefit, then, is the knowledge that he acquires if he has no one to impart it upon?

The people whom we are inviting to Allah often have problems in their lives for which they need someone who can guide them. Is there anyone better suited to this task than those who devote their lives to Islam? Islamic workers are supposed to treat the illnesses of the heart.

3. Serving the needs of the people:

Helping others is a noble activity and a testimony that the person engaged in Islamic work is not just in it for his own satisfaction. It shows sincere concern for the wellbeing of others. People respond positively to those who help them, so fulfilling their needs is a way to win over their hearts.

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever makes things easy for others in this world, Allah will make things easy for him both in this world and in the Hereafter… Allah helps His servant as long as His servant is engaged in helping his brother.” [Sahh Muslim]

Even if all that the Islamic worker has to offer to others is a smile, this simple act will have a positive effect. How much more will this effect be if they see him rushing to fulfill their needs. An Islamic worker has to give something of himself. Others have to know that he cares about them and their concerns. When someone has a problem at home, he should help that person out. When another has a problem at school, he should do what he can to help him. He must not just offer an optimistic message as the solution to all their problems.

It is also a very noble act to bring reconciliation between people who have fallen out with each other. Allah says: “No good is there in much of their private conversation, except for those who enjoin charity or that which is right or conciliation between people.” [Srah al-Nis’: 11speaking]

We encounter families wherein certain close relatives do not speak to each other. We see the same thing among classmates at school and colleagues at work. Sometimes, it falls on the shoulders of the Islamic worker to come among these people and help make peace between them, especially if they request it of him. It is bad to avoid this responsibility when one is able to shoulder it.

Once, `Abd Allah b. Sa`d asked `’ishah if the Prophet (peace be upon him) ever used to pray his voluntary prayers sitting down. `’ishah replied: “Yes: when the demands of the people wore him out.” [Sahh Muslim]

4. Speaking to traveling companions:

The time spent traveling, whether one is going somewhere by himself or as part of a group, should be capitalized upon. It does not matter what the means of conveyance is; it is a golden opportunity to speak to people. Moreover, it was the way of our Prophet (peace be upon him) with his Companions. He would speak to his traveling companions, teach them, and exhort them to righteousness.

There are so many different ways that we can use to call others to Islam. Many of them are very easy, requiring little expense and little of our time and effort. We can talk to people at the shop when we go to buy something. We might possibly be allowed leave pamphlets about Islam on their countertops. When we finish reading Islamic literature ourselves, we can leave it at a doctor’s office or a hair salon. Maybe something written inside will have a positive effect on a person who picks it up.

Though we have come to the end of this series of articles on the approaches to Islamic work, we have barely scratched the surface. Whatever good I have mentioned herein is by the grace of Allah. Any and all mistakes are my own and I seek Allah’s pardon for them.

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