Friday, August 31, 2007

Prophetic Wisdom - Generation Gap


By: Sadullah Khan

"That person is not of us ... the elder who has no compassion for the young and the young who has no respect for the elder." - Prophet Muhammad

The Generation Gap is a continual source of pain and confusion for every successive generation and is often seen as the difficulties and struggles represented in the attitudes and experiences of people of differing ages who share the same time span.

The Generation Gap occurs when older and younger people do not understand each other. This is brought about because there arises a lack of communication between one generation and another, especially between young people and their parents, who may have different perspectives, tastes, outlook, ...

Prophetic Example of Bridging the Generational Gap:
Our beloved Prophet announced prophet-hood at the age of forty and therefore, it is well-known that a sizable majority of his companions were much younger than him.
Throughout the Prophet's life, he maintained a most perfect balance between appreciating and respecting the wisdom and the experience of the elder companions such as Khadijah and Abu Bakr as-Siddiq at the same time appreciating and respecting the dynamism and the sharp insights of the younger companions such as Ali ibn Talib, 'Aishah and Abdullah ibn Abbas.

The beloved Prophet led by example when he kissed his grandchildren at a time in Arabia when such intimacy was not common. We learn from Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him) that, Allah's Apostle kissed Al-Hasan bin Ali while Al-Aqra' bin Habis At-Tamim was sitting beside him. Al-Aqra said, "I have ten children and I have never kissed anyone of them." Allah's Apostle cast a look at him and said, "Whoever is not merciful to others will not be treated mercifully."

Sadullah Khan is the Director of Islamic Center of Irvine. He has presented lectures on Islamic Civilization at California State University at Dominguez Hills. He is a frequent lecturer for the Academy of Judaic, Christian and Islamic Studies at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles). He is also an advisor to the Chancellor's Committee on Religion Ethics and Values at UCLA and serves as Director of Muslim Affairs at USC (University of Southern California).
You can watch his lectures on Empowerment and Hadith of the Day at IslamiTV

Dimensions of the QuranThe lucid and clear reflections of Sa'dullah Khan, his smooth sailing in the oceans of Quranic wisdom and beauty is most encouraging and pleasantly inviting the English reader of the Quran to plunge again into the ultimate source of enlightenment and empowerment that we have.
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About Sadullah Khan
Completed Memorization of the Holy Qur’an at the age of 8.
Completed schooling at St. Paul’s Catholic Primary School in Cape Town and at Lenasia Senior Secondary School in Johannesburg.
Attained a Bachelor of Arts Law Degree at University of Durban-Westville, Sub-Majoring in Islamic Studies and Arabic.
Completed a Higher Diploma in Journalism through Trans-World College in Jersey, UK.
Pursued further studies in Qur’anic Sciences at Al-Azhar in Cairo, Egypt (1986-1990).
Completed Post-Graduate programs on Methodology of Presentation of Islam as well as on Comparative Religion at Al-Azhar.
Studied Arabic at the International Language Institute in Cairo.
Lectured in Comparative Religious Studies, Islamic Civilization and Qur’anic Sciences at Tertiary Level in South Africa (1990-1998).
Editor of the first national Muslim newspaper in South Africa, Muslim Views (1994-1998).
Presenter of weekly programs on Understanding Islam and Dimensions of the Qur’an on Radio Voice of the Cape and Radio 786.
The Dimensions of the Qur’an has been published in book form in the United States (1999) and in South Africa (2000).
Served as Director of the Gatesville Islamic Center in Cape Town (1990-1998).
Served as Head of Department of Qur’anic Sciences at the Islamic College of Southern Africa (1990-98).
Presented papers at numerous Islamic and inter-faith conferences throughout the world - including Botswana (1983), Sierra Leone (1984), Nigeria (1984), Iran (1985), Egypt (1987), Malaysia (1993), Belgium (1997), USA (1998), Hawaii (1999), and Turkey (2000).
Currently serves as the Director of Muslim Affairs at the University of Southern California, (USC).
Currently serves on the University Religious Conference Executive Board at the University of California Los Angeles, (UCLA).
Currently serves on the Chancellor’s Committee Advisor on Religion, Ethics and Values at the University of California Los Angeles, (UCLA).
Currently lectures on Islam for the Academy of Judaic, Christian and Islamic Studies at the University of California Los Angeles, (UCLA).
Currently lectures on Islamic Civilization at Cal-State Dominguez Hills University, (CSUDH). He also presents a 3-hour weekly TV program from CSUDH on Islamic Civilization.
Currently serves as the Director of Religious Affairs at the Islamic Center of Irvine, (ICOI).

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Islamic Economics: The Total Revolution


By: Robert D. Crane* - Aug 23, 2007

I. The Economics of Tawhid
In a revolutionary age, half-assed revolutions accomplish nothing and merely bring on more injustice by failing to solve the real problems. For decades, Muslim economists have focused on the micro-problems of usury, but failed to address the larger problem of the wealth gap. The charging of interest on loans is indeed a contributing factor, but a minor one. So-called Islamic banks have been established and expanded their assets into the many billions of dollars by conning individual Muslims into "investing" their money in them as a requirement of their din. In fact, these banks, and especially the Islamic banking arms of the big multi-nationals, are fraudulent as means to promote economic justice because they have deliberately and assiduously joined the global banking system, with all of its institutional defects, in order to fit in. In Islam, everything is interconnected in accordance with the overarching paradigm of tawhid. This coherence of unity in diversity, which reflects the Oneness of the Creator, is manifested in the form of what the great jurisprudents of Islam have called the universal principles of justice. These are known as the maqasid al shari'ah. The most controversial of these in both modern Muslim ideology and secular Western thought is haqq al mal. The core meaning and principle of this universal principle of economic justice is respect for the sacredness of private property in the means of production and for the universal right of every person to capital ownership. This is disputed because in secular thought nothing is sacred. All the parts of creation are disposable because there is no concept of tawhid to give meaning.

II. The Two Principles of Economic Justice
The principles of economic justice are discussed in Chapter Seven, entitled "Human Rights in Islam from the Economic Perspective," in the early draft of Volume One on the Islamic Perspective published for feedback in June, 2007, in as part of a nine-part series under the title, The Natural Law of Compassionate Justice: Source of Convergence Between Science and Religion. The Islamic concept of economic justice is based on two principles. The first is the ultimate sovereignty of Allah over all of creation. This means that private property ownership of the means of production is sacred, but only because it implies the responsibility of stewardship by the individual owner. Whoever earns from the use of capital, including land and infrastructure, has a right to enjoy the profits, but he must earn them honestly and spend them to support the needs not only of his own family but of the marginalized in society who no fault of their own either are poor wage-slaves or incapacitated.
This social element in private ownership is based on the fundamental Islamic virtue known as infaq, which is the inclination to give rather than take in life. This is universal in every person but must be cultivated culturally because otherwise the selfish nature of every person, known as nafs al ammara or "the commanding and demanding self," will claim absolute sovereignty over what belongs to Allah. This is why one of the "five pillars" or actions to maintain one's submission to God is charity.
Charity consists both of sadaqa, which is voluntary giving to others based only on their need, and zakat, which is mandatory and is based on the capital intensivity of the means of production with rates decreasing in proportion to the increase in human input either through labor or capital. Earnings from labor are taxed at 2% of one's wealth (not on income), but earnings from cultivated land are taxed at ten percent, because the land but not the water is produced by God. Profits from uncultivated land as well as from mining ores, which come primarily from the bounties of God, are taxed at 20%. This provides incentives to invent and apply technology and pursue science in order to improve it.
The second basic principle of Islamic economics is that economic power and political power are dependent on each other. Economic justice is not merely one aspect of political justice but provides its foundation. Neither is possible without the other. This is part of the Islamic concept of tawhid, which teaches the interdependence of everything in the universe. The pulverization of knowledge into unrelated parts is the principle cause of chaos. The principle cure is the reestablishment of cosmos.
The most important derivative of this second principle for Islamic economic thought and the most important aspect of haqq al mal or respect for private property ownership in the means of production is recognition that such ownership is a universal human right. It may not be usurped by government as in socialism, whereby the "ownership" by the proletariat is pure fiction. Furthermore, Islamic principles of universal ownership are incompatible with the welfare economics of capitalist economies, which have constructed barriers to universal access to ownership and justified this politically by redistributing profits from the rich to the poor. The result is the concentration of ownership and a constantly growing wealth gap both within and among countries.
Economic justice in traditionalist Islamic thought may be compared to the design of modern input-output theory, whereby every person has a right to participate through either labor or capital in the production of wealth, and an equal right to the distribution of this wealth based on one's own input. The sole role of government is to maintain the principle of limitation through what I developed some twenty years ago as the principle of harmonic justice, which is to assure that contributive and distributive justice remain in balance. Both economic socialism and either monopoly or oligarchical capitalism violate all three principles.

The father of modern Islamic economics is Shaykh al Islam Muhammad al Tahir ibn Ashur. He taught at Zaituna University in Tunis, which traditionally ranked right after Al Azhar in Cairo as the leading Muslim university in the world, and rose to become the Grand Mufti of Tunisia. His major contribution to Islamic thought was to revive the normative study of Islamic jurisprudence in the first half of the twentieth century, which had been moribund in the Sunni world for six hundred years ever since the death of the last great Islamic jurisprudent, Al Shatibi. Ibn Ashur was inspired by the publication in printed form of Al Shatibi's manuscript, Al Muwafaqat, when Ibn Ashur was a boy and by his association as a student at the age of 24 in 1903 with Shaykh Muhhamad Abdu.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

What Mahdi they are Waiting for?

By: Maged Taman

When I read or hear the news I feel sad. What Mahdi they are looking for:

1- Shia and Sunni against each other though essential for his success is to have them united.

2- Extremists do not know what is the difference between force and power.

3- Arab tyrants are allying themselves with the west more so when they heard news from secret agencies that El Mahdi may be going to appear. They are even competing with him to make conciliation with Israel so they can block his rise.

4- The Arab did not forget their obsessions with Israel that took us nowhere.

5- Iran who does not cool it down and make the west and Israel afraid of El Mahdi and not happy to receive him.

6- Some in the Christians rights for wrong understanding of prophecies think he is the Antichrist though he is a very pro-Christ. They also are working to block his rise.

The fact is the Mahdi is not a pro-war guy or Anti-Israel or Anti-Christ. His army is not soldiers but normal people. His revolution is not bloody but ideological. His rise will change peacefully the world. We will overwhelm them. He is very likely will have the plans, the ideas, the wisdom, the interest of most of people and the power of prophecy. His rise in Islamic prophecies will be sudden and will be determined only by God. I am not a prophet I am just another guy in the web.

Basic Principles of Effective Public Speaking in Islâm


By Dr. M. Omar Mababaya and Dr. Norlain Dindang Mababaya
(Note: If you have problems viewing the Arabic symbols and don't have Arabic windows, you will need to go to your browser menu bar and select "view", then select "encoding", and finally "Arabic (windows)" to enable the Arabic font.)

The Qur’ân and the Sunnah give us absolutely practical principles on how to become effective public speakers for the pleasure of Allâh the Almighty. The following are the Qur’ânic Ayât and the authentic Ahâdîth on effective public speaking:

1. Sincerely intend to dedicate your speech to Allâh so that He will accept it as a good deed,
worthy of supreme rewards especially in the Life Hereafter:
“And they have been commanded no more than this: to worship Allâh, offering Him sincere devotion, being True (in Faith); establish regular prayer; and to give Zakat. And that is the Religion Right and Straight.” (Qur’ân 98:5)
‘Umar ibn Al-Khattab t said: I heard Allâh’s Messenger r saying, “The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended. Thus he whose migration was for Allâh and His Messenger r, his migration had been for Allâh and His Messenger r, and he whose migration was to achieve some worldly benefit or take some woman in marriage, his migration had been for that for which he migrated.” (Bukhâri 1/1 and Muslim 3/ 4692)

2. Pray and aspire for knowledge, wisdom and eloquent speech:
Allâh I is the One who gives knowledge (Qur’ân 12:22, 17:107, 18:65 and 58:11), wisdom (Qur’ân2: 269 and 38:20) and eloquent speech (41:21 and 55:4) to whom He pleases. We should pray to Him for knowledge, wisdom and eloquent speech so we can effectively convey Islâm to others. The Prophet r stresses the effect of eloquent speech in influencing people when he compares it to magic:
‘Abdullah Ibn Umar t narrated that two men came from the East and addressed the people who wondered at their eloquent speeches. On that Allâh’s Messenger r said, "Some eloquent speech is as effective as magic.” (Bukhâri 7/662)
As much as possible we must aspire for effective public speaking or eloquent speech. We should remember that by His Will, His Messengers, especially Prophet Muhammad r, and other Muslim Du‘ât succeeded in conveying Islâm:
“Truly, Allâh will admit those who believe and work righteous deeds, to Gardens beneath which rivers flow. They shall be adorned therein with bracelets of gold and pearls; and their garments there will be of silk. For they have been guided (in this life) to the purest of speeches; they have been guided to the Path of Him Who is Worthy of (all) Praise.” (22:23-24)
Abû Hurairah t narrated that the Prophet r said, “I have been given the keys of eloquent speech and given victory with awe (cast into the hearts of the enemy)...” (Bukhâri 9/127)
In our invocations especially in the Tahajjud (midnight) prayers and before our public speaking we should include the following supplications:
“O my Rabb! Increase me in knowledge.” (Qur’ân20:114)
“...O my Rabb! Expand me my breast. Ease My task for me; and remove the impediment from my speech, so they may understand what I say.” (Qur’ân 20:25-28)
“O my Rabb! Bestow wisdom on me, and join me with the righteous; grant me honorable mention on the tongue of truth among the latest (generations); make me one of the inheritors of the Garden of Bliss.” (Qur’ân26:83-84)
Umm Salamah narrated that the Prophet r used to say after the dawn prayer, “O Allâh, I ask You for beneficial knowledge, acceptable action, and good provision.” (Tirmidhî 2487, Ahmad and Ibn Mâjah)
When Allâh blesses us by His Grace with a developed personality, gifted with knowledge, wisdom and eloquence of speech we can easily convey Islâm to the non-Muslims, who will, Insha Allâh, accept our invitation.

3. Plan and prepare what to say and how to say it.
Effective public speaking requires effective planning and preparation. We should never deliver public speech hastily. We have to plan it with great deliberation and care:
Abdullah Bin Sarjis t narrated that the Prophet r said, “A good manner of conduct, deliberation and moderation are a twenty-fourth part of prophecy.” (Tirmidhî 5059)
Al Wazi bin Zari’ t narrated that “…The Prophet r said to him (al-Mundhir al-Ashajj): “You have two characteristics which Allâh likes: gentleness and deliberation.” He asked, Have I acquired them or has Allâh created (them in) my nature? He replied, No, Allâh has created (them) in your nature. He then said: "Praise be to Allâh Who has created in my nature two characteristics which Allâh and His Messenger like." (Abu Dawud 5206)
As speakers, we need more time to plan out what to say and how to deliver our speech/lecture. We must see to it that we organize our speech in scholarly manner by quoting relevant sources especially from the Qur’ân and the Sunnah. We have to let the words of Allâh I and His Messenger r strike the hearts and minds of the audience. We must organize our speech in such a way that the audience will find it interesting as it gives guidance, glad tidings/inspirations and/or admonitions to them. This is in accordance with the Sunnah of the Prophet r:
“... and We sent you (O Muhammad) but to give Glad Tidings (to the Believers) and to warn (sinners).” (Qur’ân 17:105)
“... Yet you (O Muhammad) were sent as a Mercy from your Rabb to give warning to a people to whom no Warner had come before you in order that they may receive admonition.” (Qur’ân 28:46)
After the organization, see to it that you will have a good mastery of the subject matter. Read, study or remember what to say so that you will speak with confidence before the audience. Indeed, it is imperative for us to plan but we have to acknowledge that Allâh’s the best of planners (3:54 and 8:30). Thus, we have to pray for His help to bless our plan because “when He has decreed a plan He but say to it ‘Be’ and it is!” (3:47) and that, He does command according to His Will and plan (Qur’ân 5:1).

4. Have a good pleasing personality by being neat and wearing modest cloth that is appropriate for the occasion:
“O children of Adam! Wear your beautiful apparel at every time and place of prayer: eat and drink: but waste not by excess, for Allâh loves not the wasters.” (Qur’ân 7:31)
Abdullah ibn Abbas t narrated that when the Haruriyyah made a revolt, I came to Ali t. He t said: “Go to these people. I then put on the best suit of the Yemen.” AbuZumayl (a transmitter) said: “Ibn Abbas was handsome and of imposing countenance.” Ibn Abbas t said: “I then came to them and they said: ‘Welcome to you, Ibn Abbas! What is this suit of clothes?’” I said: “Why are you objecting to me? I saw over the Messenger of Allâh the best suit of clothes.” (Abu Dawud, 4026)
Jabir ibn Abdullah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r paid visit to us, and saw a disheveled man whose hair was disordered. He said: “Could this man not find something to make his hair lie down? He saw another man wearing dirty clothes and said: Could this man not find something to wash his garments with.” (Abu Dawud, 4051, Tirmidhî 4351, Ahmad and Nasa'i)
Sahl Ibn al-Hanzaliyyah t .... narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said: “You are coming to your brethren; so tidy your mounts and tidy your dress, until you are like a mole among the people. Allâh does not like obscene words or deeds, or do intentional committing of obscenity..” (Abu Dawud, 4078)
Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-'As t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, "Eat, drink, give sadaqah and wear clothes so long as neither prodigality nor pride is mixed up with it." (Tirmidhî 4381, Ahmad, Nasa'i and Ibn Mâjah)

5. Start your speech with the mention of Allâh’s Name and Glory.
We should remember Allâh I by praising Him before, during and after our Da’wah/public speech. This will make us more closer to Him and thus, be successful in our public speech. It is Sunnah to start our lecture/speech with praises to Allâh I as narrated in the following Hâdîth:
Abdullah Bin Mas`ud t narrated that Allâh’s Messengerr taught us the address in case of some need: “Praise be to Allâh from Whom we ask help and pardon, and in Whom we take refuge from the evils within ourselves. He whom Allâh guides has no one who can lead him astray, and he whom He leads astray has no one to guide him. I testify that there is no god but Allâh, and I testify that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger.” “You who believe! Fear Allâh by Whom you ask your mutual rights, and reverence the wombs. Allâh has been watching you...." "You who believe, fear Allâh as He should be feared, and die only as Muslims…" "You who believe, fear Allâh and say what is true. He will make your deeds sound, and forgive your sins. He who obeys Allâh and His Messenger has achieved a mighty success." (Abû Dâwûd 2113)
The following Ahâdîth are admonitions to those who do not remember Allâh I before starting their public speech:
Abu Hurairah t narrated that the Prophet r said: “People who get up from an assembly in which they did not remember Allâh will be just as if they had got up from an ass's corpse, and it will be a cause of grief to them.” (Abu Dawud 4837)

6. Speak with confidence.
We Muslims should have self-confidence in ourselves. As long as we know the subject matter in Islâm that we are going to discuss with a certain degree of knowledge (in other words, we have the mastery of subject matter); and then turn to Allâh I, pray for His help, we can successfully convey the message of Islâm to others. We should have trust in Allâh that by His Grace, we can speak with confidence in public no matter how large the audience is. The following Qur’ânic verses should inspire us to have self-confidence in ourselves:
“You are the best of peoples, evolved for mankind. You enjoin what is right, forbid what is wrong, and believe in Allâh...” (3:110)
“Who is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allâh, works righteousness, and says, ‘I am of those who bow in Islâm (i.e. Muslims)?” (41:33)

7. Speak with certain knowledge. Be scholarly in your talk by giving proofs from the Qur’ân and authentic Ahâdîth:
Tariqt narrated that the Prophet r said, “The best talk is Allâh’s Book (Qur’ân), and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad.” (Bukhâri 8/120)
Abdullah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “The best talk (speech) is Allâh’s Book (Qur’ân and the best way is the way of Muhammad. And the worst matters are the heresies (those new things which are introduced into the religion). And whatever you have been promised will surely come to pass, and you cannot escape (it).” (Bukhâri 9/382)
Abdullah bin Mas'ud t narrated that Allâh’s Messengerr said, “Do not wish to be like anybody except in two cases: The case of a man whom Allâh has given wealth and he spends it in the right way; and that of a man whom Allâh has given religious wisdom (i.e., Qur’ân and Sunnah) and he gives his verdicts according to it and teaches it. (to others i.e., religious knowledge of Qur’ân and the Sunnah).” (Bukhâri 1/73, 9/419 and 9/255)
‘Abdullâh ibn ‘Amr t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “Knowledge consists of three things: the decisive Verses (Qur’ân), authentic Ahâdîth and prescriptions rightly deduced from the two. What is beside them is superfluous.” (Ibn Mâjah 1/54)
‘Abdullâh ibn Amir ibn Al-Ast narrated that the Prophet r said, “Knowledge has three categories; anything else is extra; a precise Verse, or an established Sunnah (practice), or a firm obligatory duty.” (Abu Dawud 2879)

8. Always speak the Truth and refrain from falsehood or lies:
“And he who brings the Truth and he who confirms (and supports) it—such are the men who do right. They shall have all that they wish for, with their Rabb. Such is the reward of those who do good: so that Allâh will remit from them (even) the worst in their deeds and give them their reward according to the best of what they have done.” (39:33-35)
“That Allâh may reward the people of Truth for their Truth, and punish the Hypocrites if He wills, or turn to them in Mercy; for Allâh is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (33:24)
“Shall I inform you (o people) on whom it is that the evil ones descend? They descend on every lying wicked person (into whose ears) they pour hearsay vanities and most of them are liars.” (26:221-223)
“O you who believe! Keep your duty to Allâh and fear Him, and speak (always) the Truth, He will direct you to do righteous good deeds and will forgive you your sins. And whosoever obeys Allâh and His Messenger, he has indeed achieved a great success.” (33:70-71)
Kuraym ibn Fâtik t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r offered the Fajr (early morning) prayer. When he finished it, he stood up and said three times: “False witness has been made equivalent to attributing a partner to Allâh.” He then recited: “So avoid the abomination of idols and avoid speaking falsehood as people pure of faith to Allâh, not associating anything with Him.” (Abû Daud 3592)
Abû Umamah Sa‘d ibn Abi Waqqâs t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “A believer is stamped with all the characteristics except treachery and falsehood.” (Tirmidhî 4860 and Ahmad)
‘Abdullâh ibn ‘Amrt narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “If you have four characteristics, whatever worldly advantage passes you by does not matter to you: keeping a trust, speaking the truth, a good character, and abstemiousness in food.” (Tirmidhî 5222, Ahmad and Bayhaqi)
‘Abdur Rahman ibn Abi Quradt narrated that the Prophetr performed ablution one day and his Companions began to wipe themselves with the water he had used. The Prophet r asked them what induced them to do that. And when they replied that it was love for Allâh and His Messenger, he r said, “If anyone is pleased to love Allâh and His Messenger, or rather to have Allâh and His Messenger love him, he should speak the truth when he tells anything; fulfill his trust when he is put in a position of trust; and be a good neighbor.” (Tirmidhî 4990 and Bayhaqi)
Abû Dharr t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “He has been successful whose heart Allâh has made sincere towards faith, whose heart He has made free from unbelief, his tongue truthful, his soul calm, his nature straight, whose ear He has made attentive and his eye observant. The ear is a funnel and the eye is a repository for what the heart learns. He is successful whose heart is made retentive. ” (Tirmidhî 5200, Ahmad and Bayhaqi)
Ubadah ibn as-Samit t narrated that the Prophet r said, “If you guarantee me six things on your part I shall guarantee you Paradise. Speak the truth when you talk, keep a promise when you make it, when you are trusted with something fulfil your trust, avoid sexual immorality, lower your eyes, and restrain your hands from injustice.” (Tirmidhî 4870, Ahmad and Bayhaqi)

9. Be friendly in your approach:
Abû Hurairah t narrated that the Prophet r said, “A believer is friendly, and there is no good in one who is neither friendly nor is treated in a friendly way.” (Tirmidhî 4995 and Ahmad)
‘Âishah narrated that a man asked permission to see the Prophet r, and the Prophet r said, “He is a bad member of the tribe.” When he entered, Allâh’s Messenger r treated in a frank and friendly way and spoke to him. When he departed, I said, “Allâh’s Messenger! When he asked permission, you said, “He is a bad member of the tribe; but when he entered, you treated him in a frank and friendly way.” Allâh’s Messenger r replied, “Âishah! Allâh does not like the one who is unseemly and lewd in his language.” (Abû Dâwûd 4774)
Yazîd bin Na‘mah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “When a man makes another his brother, he should ask him his name, his father’s name and the stock from which he comes, for it binds friendship more closely.” (Tirmidhî 5020)

10. In the course of your talk, always remember Allâh I the Almighty. Mention His Name and praise Him:
“Then do you remember Me, I will remember you. Be grateful to Me and reject not faith.” (2:152)
Abu Musa t narrated that the Prophetr said, “The example of the one who celebrates the Praises of his Rabb (Allâh) in comparison to the one who does not celebrate the Praises of his Rabb, is that of a living creature compared to a dead one.” (Bukhâri 8/416)
Abu Hurairah t narrated that the Prophetr said, “Allâh will give shade to seven (types of people) under His Shade (on the Day of Resurrection). One of them will be a person who remembers Allâh and his eyes are then flooded with tears.” (Bukhâri 8/486)
“Abu Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messengerr as saying that “Allâh, the Exalted and Glorious, says: `I am near to the thought of My servant as he thinks about Me, and I am with him as he remembers Me. And if he remembers Me in his heart, I also remember him in My Heart. And if he remembers Me in assembly I remember him in assembly, better than his (remembrance). And if he draws near Me by the span of a palm, I draw near him by the cubit, and if he draws near Me by the cubit I draw near him by the space (covered by) two hands. And if he walks towards Me, I rush towards him.’” (Muslim 4/ 6471)
Samurah Bin Jundabt narrated that Allâh’s Messengerr said, “The most beloved words to Allâh are the following four phrases, SubhnAllâh, Alhamdu lillah, La_ ila ha illa Allâh, Allâhu Akbar. (Glory be to Allâh, All Praises be to Allâh. There is no deity but Allâh, Allâh’s the greatest.)... it does not matter which of them you start with.” (Muslim 5329)
Abdullah ibn Umar t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “Do not speak much without mentioning Allâh, for much talk without mention of Allâh produces hardness of heart, and the one who is farthest from Allâh’s he who has a hard heart." (Tirmidhî 2274)

11. Every time you mention the Prophet’s name and/or title, invoke salam to him.
It is a must that every time we hear the Prophet’s name, we should say: r “Salâllâhu ‘alayhi wasalam” (“May the peace and blessings of Allâh be upon him.”). Allâh, the Exalted, commands:
“Verily, Allâh sends blessings upon the Prophet, and His angels ask Allâh to bless him. O you who have believed, ask Allâh to send blessings upon him, and (you) greet him with peace.” (33:56)
The following Ahâdîth should inspire us to supplicate to Allâh to send peace and blessings to His Messenger r:
Abdullah Bin Amr Bin Al Ast narrated: Allâh’s Messenger r said, “ When you hear the Mu'adhdhin, repeat what he says. Then invoke a blessing on me, for everyone who invokes a blessing on me will receive ten blessings from Allâh. Then beg from Allâh al-Wasilah for me, which is a rank in Paradise fitting for only one of Allâh’s Servants, and I hope that I may be that one. If anyone who asks that I be given the Wasilah, he will be assured of my intercession.” (Muslim 747)
Abu Humaid As -Saidi t narrated that the people asked, “O Allâh’s Messenger! How shall we (ask Allâh to) send blessings on you?" Allâh’s Messenger replied, "Say: Allâhumma salli `ala Muhammadin wa azwajihi wa dhurriyatihi kama sallaita `ala Ali Ibrahima wa barik `ala Muhammadin wa azwajihi wa dhurriyatihi kama barakta `ala Ali-Ibrahima, innaka Hamidun Majid (O Allâh! Send Your Mercy on Muhammad and on his wives and on his offspring, as You sent Your Mercy on Abraham's family; and send Your Blessings on Muhammad and on his offspring, as You sent Your Blessings on Abraham's family, for You are the Most Praiseworthy, the Most Glorious)” (Bukhâri 4/588)
Anas Bin Malikt narrated: Allâh’s Messengerr said, “He who invokes one blessings upon me, Allâh will shower ten blessings upon him and obliterate ten (of his) sins and elevate him by ten ranks.” (Tirmidhî 922 and Nasa'i)
Abdullah Bin Amr t narrated: He who invokes blessings upon Allâh’s Messenger once, Allâh and His Angels shower seventy blessings upon him.” (Tirmidhî 935 and Ahmad)

12. Be humble in your speech and avoid boasting:
“For Muslim men and women, for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast (and deny themselves), for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in Allâh’s praise for them has Allâh prepared forgiveness and great reward.” (33:35)
Haritha bin Wahb t narrated that according to Al-Khuzai the Prophetr said, “Shall I inform you about the people of Paradise? They comprise every obscure unimportant humble person, and if he takes Allâh’s Oath that he will do that thing, Allâh will fulfill his oath (by doing that). Shall I inform you about the people of the Fire? They comprise every cruel, violent, proud and conceited person." (Bukhâri 8/97 and 8/651)
Iyad ibn Himar (al-Mujashi'i) t narrated that the Prophet r said: Allâh has revealed to me that you must be humble, so that no one oppresses another and boasts over another.” (Abû Dâwûd 4877)
Jabir ibn Abdullah t narrated that the Prophet r said: “On the Day of Judgment the dearest and closest to me, as regards my company, will be those persons who will bear the best moral character. Those among you, who talk with affectation and are given to boasting, will be the most repugnant to me and farthest from me on the Day of Judgment. The Companions submitted: “O Messenger of Allâh! What is meant by the word ‘Mutafayhiqun’"? The Prophet r said: “Those given to boasting.” (Tirmidhî 631)

13. Speak good words and do not insult:
“O you who believe! Be not like those who hurt Moses but Allâh cleared him of the (calumnies) they had uttered; and he was honorable in Allâh’s sight. O you who believe! Fear Allâh and (always) say a word directed to the Right. That He may make your conduct whole and sound and forgive you your sins. And whoever obeys Allâh and His Messenger has already attained a great achievement (Paradise).” (33:69-71)
‘Abdullâh bin ‘Amr t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r neither talked in an insulting manner nor did he ever speak evil intentionally. He used to say, “The most beloved to me amongst you is the one who has the best character and manners.” (Bukhâri 5/104)
Abu Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “Anybody who believes in Allâh and the Last Day should not harm his neighbor. Anybody who believes in Allâh and the Last Day should entertain his guest generously. And anybody who believes in Allâh and the Last Day should talk what is good or keep quiet (i.e. abstain from all kinds of evil and dirty talk). (Bukhâri 8/47 and 8/482)
Abu Hurairah t narrated that the Prophet said, “Beware of suspicion (about others), as suspicion is the falsest talk. Do not spy upon each other, and do not listen to the evil talk of the people about others' affairs. And do not have enmity with one another, but be brothers...” (Bukhâri 7/74)
Bilâl bin Al-Hârith t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “A man speaks a good word, not realising its worth, for which Allâh records for him His good pleasure till the day he meets Him. A man also speaks an evil word not realising its importance for which Allâh records for him His displeasure till the day he meets Him.” (Tirmidhî 4833 and Ibn Mâjah)
Abdul Malik Al-Ash'ari t and Ali ibn AbuTalib t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said: “There is in the Paradise an apartment, the exterior of which can be seen from its interior, and the interior of which can be seen from its exterior. Such apartments have been prepared for those who are polite in talk, provide food (to the needy), fast frequently and observe the Tahajjud prayer when the people are asleep.” (Tirmidhî 1232, Ahmad, Bayhaqi transmitted it in Shu'ab al-Iman. Tirmidhî transmitted something similar from Ali. In his version the words are: He who is sweet in talk.)
Abdullâh bin Mas‘ûd t narrated that the Prophetr said, “A believer does not taunt, curse, abuse or talk indecently.” (Tirmidhî 1740)
The following Hadîth shows how the Prophet r used Hikmah by not insulting or hurting the feeling of someone:
Anas bin Mâlik t reported that a person said, “O Allâh’s Messenger r! Where is my father?” He (the Prophet r) said, “(He) is in the Fire.” When he turned away, he (the Prophet r) called him and said, “Verily, my father and your father are in the Fire.” (Muslim 1/398)

14. Avoid useless talk, discussion, argumentation and debate:
“The Believers must (eventually) win through those who humble themselves in their prayers; who avoid vain talk...” (23:1-3)
“And do not argue with the People of the Book (the Jews and the Christians) unless it be in a way that is better, save with such of them as do wrong. But say (to them), ‘We believe in the Revelation which has been sent down to us and in that which has been sent down to you. Our God and your God is One; and it is to Him we submit (in Islâm).’” (29:46)
“And (ask) of the Sinners: ‘What led you into Hell-Fire?’ They will say: ‘We were not of those who prayed, nor were we of those who fed the indigent; but we used to talk vanities with vain talkers; And we used to deny the Day of Judgment until there came to us (the Hour) that is certain.’" (74:41-47)
Abû ’Umâmah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “No one who has once found the right way, ever goes astray except through dispute.” Then Allâh’s Messenger r recited this verse, “They set it forth to you only by way of disputation. Nay! But, they are contentious people (43:58).” (Tirmidhî 180 and Ibn Mâjah)
Mughîrah bin Shu’bah t narrated that the Prophet r said, “...Allâh has hated for you (1) vain, useless talk, or that you talk too much about others, (2) to ask too many questions, (in disputed religious matters) and (3) to waste the wealth (by extravagance).” (Bukhâri 3/591)
‘Abdullâh bin ‘Umar t narrated, “I went to Allâh’s Messenger r in the morning and he heard the voice of two persons who had an argument with each other about a verse. Allâh’s Messenger r came to us (and) the (signs of) anger could be seen on his face. He said, “Verily, the (people) before you were ruined because of their disputation in the Book.” (Muslim 6443)
Abû Namlah Al-Ansâri t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “Whatever the People of the Book tell you, do not verify them, nor falsify them, but say: We believe in Allâh and His Messenger. If it is false, do not confirm it, and if it is right, do not falsify it.” (Abû Dâwûd 3637)
We should go for lectures and seminars where Muslims and non-Muslims are invited in a friendly atmosphere. We should convey to the audience especially the non-Muslims that the Glorious Qur’ân is the Only Book of Truth from Allâh (32:2-3; 22:54) that has been preserved in a Tablet or in a Book well guarded (85:21-22). No one can ever change it (6:115). Allâh I has promised to protect it from any form of human manipulation (15:9). The most varied and complete subjects of the Qur’ân, beyond man’s ability to produce, makes it miraculously unique and inimitable. It is the only Book wherein Allâh instructs mankind to follow it for guidance (6:155; 39:18). Part of Allâh’s guidance is His commandment to all mankind to obey His Messenger r (47:33). The Prophet r is the best example for mankind to follow (33:21). To be successful, we should confine our topics and discussions on Islâmic teachings by making use of the Qur’ân and the Sunnah as the Sources of Divine Truth. We should invite the non-Muslims to Islâm with beautiful preaching instead of argumentation and debate. In this kind of presentation of Islâm or Da’wah, we allow the angels, instead of the Satan, to be surrounding us. They will be happy with us and help us pray to Allâh that we succeed in our Da’wah.

15. Explain the meaning and excellence of Islâm: its rationality, completeness, practicality, and other excellent qualities in the most logical and simple way. Always stress that indeed, Islâm is easy.
“...Allâh intends every facility for you; He does not want to put you to difficulties...” (2:185)
“But whoever believes and works righteousness he shall have a goodly reward and easy will be his task as We order it by Our command.” (18:88)
Anas bin Malik t narrated that the Prophet r said, "Make things easy for the people, and do not make it difficult for them, and make them calm (with glad tidings) and do not repulse (them)." (Bukhâri 8/146)
Abu Hurairaht narrated that the Prophet r said, "Religion is very easy and whoever overburdens himself in his religion will not be able to continue in that way. So you should not be extremists, but try to be near to perfection and receive the good tidings that you will be rewarded; and gain strength by worshipping in the mornings, the nights.” (Bukhâri 1/38)

16. If the non-Muslims try to counter-argue by claiming that their religion also teaches the same or even better, ask for concrete proof or evidence:
“And they say: ‘None shall enter Paradise unless he be a Jew or a Christian.’ Those are their (vain) desires. Say: ‘Produce your proof if you are truthful.’” (2:111)
“...Say: ‘Produce the Torah and recite it, if you are truthful.’ If any, after this invent a lie and attribute it to Allâh, they are indeed unjust wrong-doers.” (3:93-94)
“Or have they taken for worship (other) gods besides Him? Say: ‘Bring your convincing proof, this is the Reminder for those with me and the Reminder for those before me.’ But most of them know not the Truth, so they turn away.’” (21:24)

17. Make use of parables and similitude that may give admonition:
“See you not how Allâh sets forth a parable? A goodly Word like a goodly tree, whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches (reach) to the sky. It brings forth its fruit at all times, by the leave of its Rabb and Allâh sets forth parables for men, in order that they may receive admonition. And the parable of an evil Word is that of an evil tree. It is torn up by the root from the surface of the earth. It has no stability. Allâh will establish in strength those who believe, with the Word that stands firm, in this world and in the Hereafter; but Allâh will leave to stray those who do wrong. Allâh does what He wills.” (14:24-27)
“We have put forth for men, in the Qur’ân every kind of parable, in order that they may receive admonition.” (39:27)

18. Refrain from making people bored:
‘Abdullâh bin Mas‘ûd t narrated that the Prophet r used to take care of us in preaching by selecting a suitable time, so that we might not get bored.” (Bukhâri 1/68)
Abû Wa‘il Shaqîq bin Salamah t narrated that ‘Abdullâh bin Mas‘ûd t used to give a religious talk to the people on every Thursday. Once a man said, “O Aba ‘Abdar-Rahman! (By Allâh) I wish if you could preach us daily.” He replied, “The only thing which prevents me from doing so, is that I have to bore you, and I take care of you in preaching by selecting a suitable time just as the Prophet r used to do with us, for fear of making us bored.” (Bukhâri 1/70 and Muslim)
‘Ikrimah bin Abî Jahl t narrated that ‘Abdullâh bin ‘Abbâst said, “Preach to the people once a week, and if you won’t, then preach them twice; but if you want to preach more, then let it be three times (a week only) and do not make the people fed-up with this Qur’ân. If you come to some people who are engaged in a talk, don't start interrupting their talk by preaching, lest you should cause them to be bored. You should rather keep quiet, and if they ask you, then preach to them at the time when they are eager to hear what you say. And avoid the use of rhymed prose in invocation for I noticed that Allâh’s Messenger r and his Companions always avoided it.” (Bukhâri 8/349)

19. Deliver the lecture briefly but precisely with eloquence in order to arouse the listeners’ interest:
‘Abdullah bin Umart narrated that two men came from the East and addressed the people who wondered at their eloquent speeches. On that Allâh’s Messenger r said, "Some eloquent speech is as effective as magic." (Bukhâri 7/622)
Abû Wâ‘il Shaqîq bin Salamah t narrated that ‘Ammâr delivered to us (the audience) the sermon. It was short and eloquent. When he (‘Ammâr) descended (from the pulpit) we said to him, “O Abul Yaqzân, you have delivered a short and eloquent sermon. Would that you had lengthened (the sermon).” He said, “I have heard Allâh’s Messenger r as saying: “The lengthening of prayer by a man and the shortness of the sermon is the sign of his understanding (of faith). So lengthen the prayer and shorten the sermon, for there is charm (in precise) expression.” (Muslim 1889)
‘Amr bin al-As t narrated that one day when a man got up and spoke at length he (Amr bin al-'As) said, “If he had been moderate in what he said: It would have been better for him. I heard the Messenger of Allâh r said: ‘I think (or, I have been commanded) that I should be brief in what I say, for brevity is better.’” (Abû Dâwûd 4990)

20. Talk with a sense of feeling or emotion:
Anas bin Mâlik t narrated that the Prophet r said, “What is wrong with those people who look towards the sky during the prayer?” His talk grew stern while delivering this speech and he said, “They should stop (looking towards the sky during the prayer); otherwise their eye-sight would be taken away.” (Bukhâri 1/717)
‘Abdullâh bin Mas‘ûd t narrated that the Prophet r said, “I know the person who will be the last to come out of the (Hell) Fire, and the last to enter Paradise. He will be a man who will come out of the (Hell) Fire crawling, and Allâh will say to him, ‘Go and enter Paradise.’ He will go to it, but he will imagine that it had been filled, and then he will return and say, ‘O my Rabb, I have found it full.’ Allâh will say, ‘Go and enter Paradise, and you will have what equals the world and ten times as much (or you will have as much as ten times the like of the world).’ On that, the man will say, ‘Do you mock at me (or laugh at me) though You are the King?’” I saw Allâh’s Messenger r (while saying that) smiling that his premolar teeth became visible. It is said that he will be the lowest in degree amongst the people of Paradise. (Bukhâri 8/575)
Jâbir bin ‘Abdullâh t narrated that whenever Allâh’s Messenger r delivered a sermon, his eyes would turn red. His voice would become loud. And his wrath would enhance as if he was warning (the people) against an enemy troop, saying, “It will surely attack you in the morning; it will surely attack you in the evening...” (Ibn Mâjah 1/45)

21. Explain things very clearly. Repeat important points (if necessary), and speak in a clear voice loud enough for the last person at the back to hear. And never talk so quickly and vaguely:
“And be moderate in your pace, and lower your voice; for the harshest of sounds without doubt is the braying of the ass.” (31:19)
“Obey Allâh and obey the Messenger and beware (of evil): if you do turn back, know you that it is Our Messenger’s duty to convey (the Message) in the clearest manner.” (5:92)
“(We sent the Messengers) with Clear Signs and Scriptures and We have also sent down unto you (O, Muhammad) the Message; that you may explain clearly to men what is sent for them, and that they may give thought.” (16:44)
“How should they have the reminder. Seeing that a Messenger explaining things clearly has (already) come to them.” (44:13)
Anas bin Mâlik t, narrated that whenever the Prophet r spoke a sentence (said a thing), he used to repeat it thrice so that the people could understand it properly from him and whenever he asked permission to enter, (he knocked the door) thrice with greeting.” (Bukhâri 1/95)
‘Âishah narrated that the Prophet r used to talk so clearly that if somebody wanted to count the number of his words, he could do so.” (Bukhâri 4/768 and Muslim)
‘Abdullâh bin ‘Amr t narrated that once Allâh’s Messenger r remained behind us in a journey. He joined us while we were performing ablution for the ‘Asr (afternoon) prayer which was over-due. We were just passing wet hands over our feet (not washing them properly) so the Prophet r addressed us in a loud voice and said twice or thrice, “Save your heels from the Fire.” (Bukhâri 1/96)
‘Âishah narrated that the Prophet r used to talk so clearly that if somebody wanted to count the number of his words, he could do so. Narrated Urwa bin Az-Zubair: ‘Âishah said (to me), “Don't you wonder at Abu so-and-so who came and sat by my dwelling and started relating the traditions of Allâh’s Messenger intending to let me hear that, while I was performing an optional prayer. He left before I finished my optional prayer. Had I found him still there. I would have said to him, “Allâh’s Messenger never talked so quickly and vaguely as you do.’” (Bukhâri 4/768)

22. Make appropriate gestures to facilitate better understanding:
Abu Uthman t narrated that while we were at Adharbijan, 'Umar wrote to us: ‘Allâh 's Messenger r forbade wearing silk except this much. Then the Prophet r approximated his two fingers (index and middle fingers) (to illustrate that) to us.’ Zuhair (the sub-narrator) raised up his middle and index fingers.” (Bukhâri 7/719)
Abu Hurairah t narrated that Abu-l-Qasim (the Prophet r) said, "On Friday there is a particular time. If a Muslim happens to be praying and invoking Allâh for something good during that time, Allâh will surely fulfill his request." The Prophet r pointed out with his hand. We thought that he wanted to illustrate how short that time was. (Bukhâri 8/409)
‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud t narrated that the Prophet r said, “The Adhan pronounced by Bilalt should not stop you from taking Suhur, for he pronounces the Adhan at night, so that the one offering the late night prayer (Tahajjud) from among you might hurry up and the sleeping from among you might wake up. It does not mean that dawn or morning has started.” Then he (the Prophet r) pointed with his fingers and raised them up (towards the sky) and then lowered them (towards the earth) like this (Ibn Mas'ud t imitated the gesture of the Prophet r). Az-Zuhri gestured with his two index fingers, which he put on each other and then stretched them to the right and left. These gestures illustrate the way real dawn appears. It spreads left and right horizontally. The dawn that appears in the high sky and lowers down is not the real dawn). (Bukhâri 1/595)

23. Use visual aids for easy comprehension:
‘Abdullâh bin Mas‘ûd t narrated that (once) Allâh’s Messenger r drew a line for us and then said, “That is the path shown by Allâh.” Then he drew several other lines on his right and left sides and said, “These are the paths on every side of which there is a devil calling towards it.” He then recited this verse, ‘And verily, this is My Straight Path, so follow it.’” (Tirmidhî 166, Ahmad, Nasâ’i and Darimî)
Jâbir bin ‘Abdullâh t narrated , “We were sitting in the company of the Prophet r. He drew a (straight) line and drew two (other) lines on its right side and two lines on its left side. He then placed his hand on the middle line and remarked, “This is Allâh’s Path.” Then, he recited this verse: ‘And verily, it is My Straight Path; so follow not the (other) paths. They will separate you away from His Path.’ (6:153).’” (Ibn Mâjah 1/11)
Anas bin Malikt narrated that the Prophet r drew a few lines and said, "This is (man's) hope, and this is the instant of his death, and while he is in this state (of hope), the nearer line (death) comes to Him." (Bukhâri 8/427)
‘Abdullaht narrated that the Prophetr drew a square and then drew a line in the middle of it and let it extend outside the square. Then he drew several small lines attached to that central line, and said, "This is the human being, and this, (the square) in his lease of life, encircles him from all sides (or has encircled him), and this (line), which is outside (the square), is his hope. And these small lines are the calamities and troubles (which may befall him), and if one misses him, another will snap (i.e. overtake) him. And if the other misses him, a third will snap (i.e. overtake) him.” (Bukhâri 8/426)

24. If anyone from the audience causes annoyance or insults you, be patient, control your anger and refrain from disputes or quarrels:
“Let not their speech grieve you: for all power and honor belong to Allâh: He Who hears and knows (all things).” (10:65)
“And argue not with the People of the Book (the Jews and the Christians), except in the best way, unless it be with those of them who do wrong. But say (to them), ‘We believe in the Revelation which has been sent down to us and in that which has been sent down to you; our God and your God is One; and to Him we submit (in Islâm).’” (29:46)
Abû Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “The strong is not the one who overcomes the people by his strength, but the strong is the one who controls himself while in anger.” (Bukhâri 8/ 135 and Muslim 4/6311-6314)
Abû Hurairah t narrated that a man said to the Prophet r “Advise me.” The Prophet r said, “Do not be angry and furious.” The man asked (the same) again and again, and the Prophet r said in each case, “Do not be angry and furious.” (Bukhâri 8/137)
‘Âishah narrated that the Prophet r said, “The most hated person in the sight of Allâh is the most quarrelsome person.” (Bukhâri 3/637)
Sahl Bin Sad t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “…Be patient till you face them (i.e., the infidels) and invite them to Islâm and inform them of what Allâh has enjoined upon them. By Allâh! If a single person embraces Islâm at your hands (i.e., through you) that will be better for you than the red camels.” (Bukhâri 4/192 and 5/51)
Abû ’Umâmah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, “No people strayed from the right path after the (divine) guidance on which they were, but those who, indulged in disputation.” He then recited the verse: ‘Nay, but they are a contentious people (43:58).’” (Ibn Mâjah 1/48)

25. Distribute the written copy of the lecture to the audience:
Abû Hurairah t narrated that when Allâh gave victory to His Messenger r over the people of Makkah, Allâh’s Messenger r stood up among the people. After glorifying Allâh, he said, “Allâh has prohibited fighting in Makkah and has given authority to His Messenger and the believers over it. So, fighting was illegal for anyone before me and was made legal for me for a part of a day, and it will not be legal for anyone after me.” Abû Shâh, a Yemenite, stood up and said, “O Allâh’s Messenger r! Get it written for me.” Allâh’s Messenger r said, “Write it down for Abâ Shâh.” (The sub-narrator asked Al-Auzâ‘î), “What did he mean by saying, Get it written, O Allâh’s Messenger?” He replied, “The speech which he had heard from Allâh’s Messenger.” (Bukhâri 3/613)

26. Ask if they understood properly the Islâmic lecture that was conveyed to them. Also be ready to entertain questions but not too many:
Abû Bakrah t narrated that the Prophet r said, “No doubt your blood, property”; the sub-narrator Muhammad thought that Abu Bakrah had also mentioned “and your honor (chastity) are sacred to one another as is the sanctity of this day of yours in this month of yours. It is incumbent on those who are present to inform those who are absent.” Muhammad, the sub-narrator, used to say, “Allâh’s Messenger r told the truth.” The Prophet r repeated twice: “No doubt! Haven’t I conveyed Allâh’s Message to you?” (Bukhâri 1/105)
Anas bin Mâlik t, narrated that while we were in the mosque, a man came riding on a camel. The man said to the Prophet r, “I want to ask you something and will be hard on questioning. So do not be angry.” The Prophet r said, ‘Ask whatever you want.’” (Bukhâri 1/63)
Anas bin Mâlik t, narrated that once the people started asking Allâh’s Messenger r questions, and they asked so many questions that he became angry and ascended the pulpit and said, “I will answer whatever questions you may ask me today...” (Bukhâri 8/373)
Mughîrah bin Sh‘ubah t narrated that the Prophet r said, “Allâh has forbidden you to be undutiful to your mothers, to withhold (what you should give) or demand (what you do not deserve), and to bury your daughters alive. And Allâh has disliked that you talk too much about others, ask too many questions (in religion), or waste your property.” (Bukhâri 8/6)

27. Invite people to Islâm with kind words, wisdom and beautiful preaching instead of evil words or bad language:
“Invite (all) to the Way of your Rabb with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for your Rabb knows best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance.” (16:125)
“Kind words and forgiving of faults are better than charity followed by injury. And Allâh is Rich (Free of all wants) and He is most Forbearing.” (2:263)
“Allâh does not like the utterance of evil words in public except by one who has been wronged. Allâh is He Who hears and knows all things.” (4:148)
‘Abdullâh bin ‘Amir t narrated that the Prophet r never used bad language. He used to say, “The best amongst you are those who have the best manners and character.” (Bukhâri 4/759; 8/56)
Abdullah ibn Mas'ud narrated that the Prophet r said: “A believer does not taunt, curse, abuse or talk indecently.” (Tirmidhî 1740)
Anas ibn Malikt narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said, "Coarse talk does not come into anything without disgracing it, and modesty does not come into anything without adorning it.” (Tirmidhî 4854)
Abu Darda t narrated that the Prophet r said: “Nothing is weightier in the scales of a believer on the Day of Judgment than his good behavior. Allâh treats with displeasure a person who is given to loose and vulgar talk.” (Tirmidhî 626)

28. After the speech or Da’wah is over, invite the non-Muslims to open their minds and hearts to Islâm with selected Qur’ânic verses:
"Truly the Religion before Allâh is Islâm (submission to His Will). Those who were given the Scripture (the Jews and the Christians) did not differ except out of mutual jealousy, after knowledge had come to them. But if any denies the Signs of Allâh, Allâh is swift in calling to account.” (3:19)
“And whoever desires a religion other than Islâm (submission to Allâh), never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter he will be in the ranks of those who have lost (all spiritual good).” (3:85)
“Who can be better in religion than one who submits his whole self to Allâh...?” (4:125)
“...This day have I perfected your religion for you, completed My favor upon you, and have chosen for you Islâm as your religion…” (5:3)
“Whatever you worship apart from Him is nothing but names which you have named, you and your fathers, for which Allâh has sent down no authority. The command is for none but Allâh. He has commanded that you worship none but Him. That is the right religion, but most men do not know.” (12:40)
Ask the non-Muslims to ponder upon the veracity of the above Qur’ânic verses. They should be rational and see how powerful and strong the categorical statements of Allâh. Indeed, only the True God and Creator of all has the divine power and authority to say them to us.

29. Advise them to pray to the One and Only True God for guidance. f they ignore your invitation, then advise them to pray to the One and Only True God ¾ to supplicate to Him to guide them to the Truth. Verily, He is the One Who guides those whom He wills to Islâm:
“Those to whom Allâh wills to guide, He opens their breast to Islâm. Those whom He wills to leave straying, He makes their breast close and constricted, as if they had to climb up to the sky; thus does Allâh lay abomination on those who believe not.” (6:125)
“Whom Allâh does guide, he is on the right path. Whom He rejects from His guidance, such are the persons who lose.” (7:178)
Abû Hurairah t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said to his uncle (at the time of his death), “Make a profession of it that there is no god but Allâh and I will bear testimony (of your being a Muslim) on the Day of Judgment.” He (Abû Talib) said, “Were it not the fear of the Quraish blaming me (and) saying that it was the fear of (approaching death) that induced me to do so, I would have certainly delighted your eyes.” It was then that Allâh revealed, “Verily, you (O Muhammad) can not guide to the right path whom you love. And it is Allâh Who guides whom He will and He knows best who are the guided (28:56).” (Muslim 38)
Make it very clear to the non-Muslims that Allâh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful, is the Only One Who really guides people to the Right Path. Allâh I gives guidance to those who ask His guidance. He gives pardon to those who sincerely seek His forgiveness. It is for their benefit that they must ask Allâh’s guidance and forgiveness:
“Race one another in asking forgiveness from your Rabb, and towards Paradise, the width whereof is as the width of Heaven and earth, prepared for those who believe in Allâh and His messengers. That is the Grace of Allâh, which He bestows on whom He pleases: and Allâh is the Owner of Great Bounty.” (57:21)
Abû Dharr t narrated that Allâh’s Messenger r said that Allâh, the Most High, says, “My servants. All of you are astray except him whom I have guided, but if you ask Me for guidance I will guide you. All of you are poor except him whom I have enriched, but if you ask of Me, I will give you provision. All of you are sinners except him whom I have preserved (from sin), but if any of you knows that I have power to pardon and asks my pardon, I will pardon him, and I do not care.... My giving is speech and my punishment is speech. My command to a thing when I want it is just to say to it ‘Be’ and it comes into being.” (Tirmidhî 2344, Ahmad and Ibn Mâjah)
For those who embrace Islâm, it is Sunnah that after their sincere declaration of the Shahadah, we should instruct them to supplicate to Allâh for His forgiveness, mercy, guidance and sustenance:
Abu Malik Ashja`i t narrated that whenever a person embraced Islâm, Allâh’s Messengerr instructed him to recite: "O Allâh, grant me pardon, have mercy upon me, direct me to the path of righteousness and provide me sustenance.” (Muslim 6514)

30. When the lecture or program is over, it is Sunnah to conclude it with supplication. When we finish our Da’wah session (or gathering), it is a Sunnah to conclude it with the following supplication:
“Subhannaka Allâhumma wa bihamdik. Ashado a la_ ilaha illa_ ant. Astaghfiruka wa atowbo ilaik.” (How perfect you are O Allâh and I praise You. None has the right to be worshipped except You. I seek Your forgiveness and turn in repentance to You.)” (Tirmidhî 3/153)
Concluding Remarks
It is worth pointing out that public speaking is an art, and its success depends on the individual’s knowledge and mastery of the subject. Being an art, it can be rendered in any way suitable to the given occasion but it must be done in conformity with the Qur’ân and the Sunnah. All the principles of effective public speaking cited in this paper prove that indeed Islâm is the complete and perfect religion. We need not look for any ideal effective public speaker because Prophet Muhammad r is the best model for us. It is true that some individuals rose to fame and power because of their eloquent speeches. However, their speeches are not necessarily acceptable to Allâh I. For one thing a public speaker will succeed only if he does it for the pleasure of Allâh I, and not for Riah (showing off). Let us not emulate those people who speak eloquently only to impress people and receive punishment in the Hell-Fire. Let us take warning from the following divine admonitions:
“There is the type of man whose speech about this world's life may dazzle you and he calls Allâh to witness about what is in his heart; yet is he the most contentious of enemies. When he turns his back his aim everywhere is to spread mischief through the earth and destroy crops and cattle. But Allâh loves not mischief. When it is said to him ‘Fear Allâh’ he is led by arrogance to (more) crime. Enough for him is Hell; an evil bed indeed (to lie on)!” (2: 204-206)
Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet r said: “On the Day of resurrection Allâh will not accept repentance or ransom from him who learns excellence of speech to captivate thereby the hearts of men, or of people.” (Abu Dawud 4988)
/ If you are interested to learn how to be an effective writer and public speaker or to know more about Islâm in order to attain success, click on WISDOM.
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Muhammad (s.a.w.s.): The World’s Great Prophet


By Dr. Norlain Dindang Mababaya

An excerpt from the Author’s book, "Teachings of the World’s Great Prophet”, with foreword by Dr. Maneh Al-Johani, Secretary General of the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY). Published with no copyright by the Wisdom Enrichment Foundation (WEFOUND), Mindanao State University, Marawi City Philippines in 1988).
Which teachings constitute the most comprehensive guidance to mankind? How should man develop himself to learn, appreciate and live in accordance with such teachings? Every rational individual should seriously ponder over these sensible questions to make life more meaningful and truthful.
To be dynamically effective, one’s life should function as an integrated whole system conforming to Allah’s Law. As such, everything in man (his physical, economic, political, socio-cultural, psychological, educational, moral and spiritual being) needs proper guidance. Such guidance should enable him to enjoy better life here and in the hereafter. It should enable him to spend wisely his temporary journey on earth for everlasting happiness in the eternal world hereafter.
To be truly guided, man has to make use of Allah’s innate gift to him as a rational-thinking creature. He should be able to think intelligently, to reflect deeply, to assess objectively and to decide reasonably what teachings comprise the best guidance for him to follow. This is obviously necessary because some hypocrites who falsely claimed to be “prophets of Allah” has emerged to distort the Truth. With all pretensions, these false prophets had come up with their own man-made laws and heresies, side by side with the teachings of Allah (S.W.T.) (Subhanahu wa ta’ala, meaning: the Exalted, Most Glorious) and His true messengers, like Jesus Christ and Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) (Salallahu ‘alayhi wa salam, meaning: May the peace and blessings of Allah (S.W.T.) be upon him.)
Moreover, there were those who fabricated wrong concepts and ideas aimed primarily at destroying Islam, “a divinely-ordained path for human life” (S. Qutb, 1982, p. 2). In Time Magazine (April 16, 1979 issue), Edward Said reported that “over 60,000 (sixty thousand) books have been written against Islam by the Christian West.” One of the major skepticisms against Islam revolves on the personality of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) and his great mission to mankind. Without substantial evidence nor sensible explanation to defy the rational beliefs of the Muslims, those critics brand the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) as an “impostor’ and likewise claim that “he is the author of the Holy Qur’an.” They also question the authenticity of the Prophet’s Ahadith (teachings and traditions). These claims and fabrications are absolutely unfounded.
The Holy Qur’an is the Divine Word of Allah (S.W.T.) revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) through the Archangel Gabriel to save mankind from darkness unto light (Qur’an 14: 1). Allah (S.W.T.) sent it as the Book in truth and the balance to judge between right and wrong (Qur’an 42: 17). Since it is the Book of Allah (S.W.T.) , He Himself guards it from corruption (Qur’an 15: 9) for man to learn wisdom (Qur’an 12: 2) and, hence, receive the most righteous guidance (Qur’an 17: 9). Allah (S.W.T.) enlightens mankind to the truth when He says:
“Do they not consider the Qur’an (with care) ? Had it not been from other than Allah, they would surely have found therein much discrepancy?” (Qur’an 14: 82)
“Say: ‘lf the whole of mankind and Jinn were to gather to produce the like of the Qur’an they could not produce like thereof even if they backed up each other with help and support. “ (Qur’an 17: 88)
Allah the Almighty sent Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) (the seal of all the prophets) as His universal Messenger to mankind, giving them glad tidings, and warning them against sin (Qur’an 34: 28). Allah (S.W.T.) sent him to perfect all moral values and to serve as the best example for mankind to follow (Qur’an 33: 21). The Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) came at a time when almost the entire world had forsaken the path of piety, righteousness and truth. He came during the era of darkness and ignorance. Superstitions and multiplicity of conflicting beliefs and inhumane practices shaped the lives of men and women. To enlighten the world with Allah’s word and divinely-inspired teachings, Allah (S.W.T.) sent Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.). Allah’s choice of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.), an unlettered man, signifies that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) is not the author of the Holy Qur’an. Indeed, the Qur’an could never be the creation of human mind, but could only emanate from the only True God, Allah (S.W.T.) To preserve Allah’s Word, the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) not only shared with his followers every Revelation he received from Allah (S.W.T.) through the Archangel Gabriel but also ordered his learned companions to commit it to writing. During his time, many of his Companions memorized the whole text of the Holy Qur’an, which was already recorded then. When the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) died, Abu Bakr (r.a.) (Radhiallahu anha, meaning: May Allah (S.W.T.) be pleased with him) who was the first rightly guided Caliph kept a complete copy of the Holy Qur’an. Under the leadership of Uthman, the third rightly guided caliph, the reproduction of the Holy Qur’an started. In today’s modern world, the Holy Qur’an has remained exactly the same as its original form. Mankind should, therefore, than Allah (S.W.T.) for sending His Messenger (s.a.w.s.) the message of the Holy Qur’an.
Aside from the the Holy Qur’an, Allah (S.W.T.) has endowed the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) with wisdom, the Ahadith (plural of Hadith), through which the readers can learn how he spent his life as the best example to humanity. Hadith literally means “statement”, which is otherwise known as “Sunnah” (a mode of life, practice, custom or tradition). Ahadith generally refer to “the records of utterances, discourses, practices, usages, sayings and the way of life led by the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) ever since he assumed prophethood in the fortieth year of his life (609 A.C.) to the year of his death (632 A.C.) when he was 63 years old.” (M. Azizullah, 1972, p.1)
Hadith plays a very vital role in perfecting the way of life of the Muslims. It is sacred, inviolate and majestic and it is revered next to the Holy Qur’an in the entire Muslim world. It provides detailed specifications for what is determined in generality by the Qur’an. It covers the secondary obligations which facilitate primary ones. In fact, the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) successfully conveyed the Qur’an to mankind through the Ahadith. H. A. Gibb, a scholar from the West, presents an objective analysis of this fact (S. A. Husain, 1975, p. 5):
“The Qur’an is comparatively short and even in this small book the greater part has no direct bearing on dogmatic, ritual legal, political and social questions. The general principles by which all these matters should be regulated are to be found in the Qur’an but not all of them are set out with equal clearness and detail. It is, therefore, essential to interpret and elaborate the relevant texts. The natural, and indeed, the only possible, interpreter whose judgment can be trusted is the Prophet through whom they were revealed. According to the Qur’an itself the Prophet was possessed not only of the kitab, the written book but also of the hikma, the wisdom, whereby ultimate principles can be applied to the details and episodes of ordinary life. Consequently, his actions and sayings, transmitted by chain of reliable narrators form a kind of commentary and supplement to the Qur’an.”
Some of the Ahadith were also written during the time of the Prophet (s.a.w.s.). He, however, ordered his Companions to rub out whatever they had written down of his own statements. He feared that people might be confused and mixed Ahadith with the Holy Qur’an. Knowing the importance of every Hadith, the Prophet’s Companions and later learned Muslim scholars made a compilation of Ahadith after the Prophet’s death. In their collection of Ahadith they were cautious because of the Prophet’s warning that: “He who deliberately and knowingly attributes to me something which (S.W.T.) have not said will certainly have his place reserved for him In hell.” Great measures of diligence in the compilation of Ahadith were then observed.
The deliberate fabrication or distortion of Ahadith started when civil war erupted in the Muslim state after the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) had passed away. There were people who fabricated Ahadith to create division, hostility and conflict in the ranks of Muslims. To get rid of spurious traditions and teachings that had crept into the authentic Ahadith leading Muslim scholars developed a scientific way of confirming the authenticity of each Hadith (A Salahl, February 14, 1986, p.7).
The scientific bases for the acceptance of Ahadith have always been the most trustworthy and accurate yardstick for historical confirmation. Assad Rustom comments that the scientific method employed in determining the authenticity of Hadith by Judge Ayyad in his Mustalah Al Hadith (Methodology of Hadith) “rises to the highest degree of knowledge and precision. In fact, none of the great people of history in Europe or America can possibly write a better one on any of its subjects, though even centuries have passed since it was written.” (A. A. Tabbarah, 1978, p. 478)
There are many anthologies of Ahadith, the most known and most reliable of which are the following:1. Sahih Al-Bukhari, compiled by Muhammad lbn lsmael Al-Bukhari; 2. Sahih Muslim, compiled by lmam Muslim lbn Al-Hajjaj; 3. Sunan Al-Abu Dawud, by Abu Dawud Suleiman lbn Al-Ash’ath; 4. Sunan Al-Tirmidhi, by Muhammad lbn lssa Al-Tirrnidhi; 5. Sunan Al-lbn Maja, by Abu Abdullah Muhammad lbn Al-Kazwini; and 6. Sunan An-Nasai, by Abu Abdul Rahman Ahmed lbn Shou’aib An-Nasai. (lbid; also M. Azizullah, pp. 25-26).
Of the six compilations, Al-Bukhari’s compilations is the most authentic and accurate of all works written on Ahadith. According to Dr. Muhammad .M. Khan of the Islamic University of Medina, Saudi Arabia, religious scholars of Islam agreed that ‘the most authentic book after the book of Allah (i.e., Al-Qur’an) is Sahih Al-Bukhari.” (Khan’s translations of Sahih Al-Bukhan, Vol. I, p. xiv)
In the selection of authentic Ahadith, lmam Bukhari chose only 7,275 Ahadith out of 600,000. Next to Sahih Al-Bukhari is Sahih Muslim. lmam Muslim reportedly collected only 9,200 out of the 300,000 Ahadith. These two compilations command greatest respect among Muslims worldwide, with the four Sunans enjoying close popularity as well. Overall, all of the six compilations are termed Sahih Sittah (six authentic traditional works). (M. Azizullah, op. cit.)
The tone and style of the Ahadith differ from that of the Holy Qur’an. The latter, being the wind of Allah (S.W.T.) is absolutely unique. The Holy Qur’an embodies a distinct form of eloquence and magnificence. T. Hussein says:
“The Qur’an is neither prose nor poetry; it is only the Qur’an and cannot be named otherwise. Evidently it is not poetry because it is not limited by the restriction of verification, and likewise it is not prose because it has its own conditions, not shared by other modes of expression – like the fawassel at the ends of verses, and like the particular melody which dominates them.” (Tabbarah, 1978, pp. 449450 )
Moreover, the Holy Qur’an came down with more polished speech and more forceful style than the Ahadith. In the verses of the Holy Qur’an the reader learns that Allah (S.W.T.) is Omnipotent, Just, Wise and Merciful. Allah’s tone of speech, as evident in the Holy Qur’an, never gets weak even where it expresses a sense of mercy. On the other hand, the style the Prophet’s speech, as seen in the Ahadith is conversational and instructive. The reader of the Ahadith feels the presence of a person speaking in the presence of Allah (S.W.T.) (Tabbarah, ibid.). This proves that Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) could never be the author of the Holy Qur’an. He is only a Messenger, whom Allah (S.W.T.) had granted the opportunity to successfully convey to mankind through the Ahadith the Divine Message of the Holy Qur’an.
Man who lives in accordance to the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) finds internal and external peace. He can easily establish harmony with his immediate environment (with his family, relatives, neighbors and friends) and those outside his community. The teachings encourage smooth interpersonal relationships between and among nations. They assure mankind of universal brotherhood, equality, justice, dignity and honor, guidance and salvation. They are very practical, so full of common sense and so full of truth. They apply to every situation, every age, and every man of all walks of life. They revolve around the Islamic way of life which transcends and penetrates far beyond all barriers of race and status of wealth or prestige.
More significantly, the Ahadith prove Muhammad’s universal prophethood. No other great man and prophet had come up with such teachings so full of moral guidance that awakens the mind and shakes the heart of every rational being on earth. It was Allah’s miracle that the unlettered Prophet (s.a.w.s.) who grew in the Dark Age, rose to teach the whole of humanity and perfected morality. This historical fact shows a clear sign for those who deny Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) as Allah’s universal Messenger to all nations. Everyone should believe that behind the Great Prophet (s.a.w.s.) was Allah (S.W.T.). Allah the Almighty blessed him with wisdom to propagate the Truth.
The Prophet (s.a.w.s.) died, but he left humanity with everlasting teachings. His comprehensive and universal teachings will continue to guide mankind as long as there exist people who seek for the truth. Every faithful believer who learns his teachings will always bear in mind that “... the best word is the Book of Allah, and the best way is the way of Muhammad and the foulest thing is fabrication and every fabrication is departure from the straightway.” (Muslim) He will think of the warning that “whoso fabricates anything and ascribes it to our religion, he is accursed.” (Bukhari and Muslim). Teachings such as these will subsequently preserve Islam: the Religion of Truth. The Prophet (s.a.w.s.) tells nothing but the truth when he says: “Allah did not send me to reproach (and curse) people but as a mercy to them and as one calling them to the Truth.” (Muslim) In his teachings, he enjoins every man to speak the truth and refrain from falsehood. He says: truth leads to piety which paves the Way to Paradise... and falsehood leads one to vices and evils land one in hell.” (Bukhari and Muslim) The Prophet’s teachings are indeed so full of truth. They guide mankind to the right path in this world and In the hereafter.
Through the Prophet man learns that one imbibes the faith by acknowledging Allah (S.W.T.) as his only True God, Islam as his religion and Muhammad as his prophet. (Muslim). The Prophet (s.a.w.s.) teaches the truth that Jesus Christ (s.a.w.s.) is a prophet like him. There is no prophet between them. But the Christians raised Jesus (s.a.w.s.) to the status of Allah’s son (Bukhari and Muslim). It is a grievous sin to join others with Allah for “there is no Allah but Allah.” (Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, Nasai) “Allah says: ‘I am Allah - there is no Allah besides Me: (S.W.T.) am the King of (all) kingdoms, and the King of (all) kings...” (Nasai) Moreover, the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) prophesied the second coming of Jesus Christ (s.a.w.s.) as a just judge to abolish the practices contrary to Islam. In his return, he would succeed in correcting the misconceptions which the Christians have developed about him (Bukhari and Muslim). The truth about Jesus Christ, therefore, is that he was a prophet of Allah (S.W.T.) and hence, he could never be the son of Allah (S.W.T.) nor the God himself.
Through Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.), everyone who seeks for Truth realizes that Islam is the divinely-ordained path for human life. Every essence of his teachings serves as guidance to Truth. His teachings constitute the most comprehensive, practical, sensible and truthful guidance to all peoples in all walks of life and in all conditions of human endeavor. The universality of his mission, therefore makes him the World’s Great Prophet.

If you are interested to learn how to be an effective writer and public speaker or to know more about Islâm in order to attain success, click on WISDOM.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Former Christian Priests and Missionaries who have Embraced Islam: Dr. M.H. Durrani


By: Dr. M.H. Durrani

[M.H. Durrani was formerly Senior Chaplain at St. Mary's Church in Quetta, Pakistan, and holds a doctorate in Theology. This testimony is taken from a tract he wrote called "Islam - The Light of My Life". After 24 years as an Anglican priest and missionary, he received God's Guidance, and became a Muslim. He performed the Shahadah - the Islamic testification of faith, with Maulana Fazlur-Rahman Ansari Al-Qaderi, President of the World Federation of Islamic Missions. Dr. Durrani's meditations on the noble life and inspiring example of the Prophet Muhammad are particularly instructive. He has also authored a number of books on topics related to Islam and Christianity, some which are listed in an appendix following his testimony. - Editor]Thirty years ago, at a very young age, I became a Christian under the influence of a Mission School. I have spent most of my life in the Church of England as an Anglican Priest from 1939 to 1963. Islam came to me as the spring comes to the cold earth after the dark winter. Thus I came back to the fold of the religion of my forefathers: Islam.For my coming back to the fold of Islam the cause is the inspiration given to me through a dream where in I seem to have been blessed with the personal blessings of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him). Now I praise God and pray for His Holy Prophet and I am overjoyed to find the Prophet (peace be upon him).A change of heart comes from Almighty God. In fact, without His guidance all our learning, all our searching and all our efforts to find the trught may even lead us astray.We need conviction without which no argument, how so ever skillful, neither any eloquence how so ever impassioned, nor learning how so ever deep, will ever make a man satisfied unless he has the proof he has the proof within his own soul. The only way to have it, is to receive it as a free gift from God.Now, the point that I want specially to emphasise is that each one of us has a guiding vision; if we follow it faithfully it will bring us satisfaction. At one time or other, whether it be during youth or in the prime of our life, or in old age, every one has a dream, a vision and inspiration, an ideal, a sense of a finger pointing at him, out of our voice calling upward to higher life: "This is the way, walk ye in it." We may not be able to explain it but God fulfils Himself in many ways; He sends to each a vision which each one can understand.To each in His Mercy, hath God allowedHis several pillars of fire and cloudI mean by this the light that shines into a man’s soul when he realises for the first time the high and solemn purposes of life. Can’t you remember such an experience, when in some moment of depression and disillusionment your whole soul cried out in revolt against the futility, the emptiness, the dreary monotony of your existence? Has God created, you have said to yourself, for nothing better than this; to get up in the morning and go to work, to serve the Bully Ragging employer who gets the best work out of his men or to slave at a desk or in a shop, to face the endless fret and worry on how to make both ends meet? Surely, life has something more satisfying to offer than this. I have an intellect, a soul, a personality, some independence of character, some capacity for high achievement, but it is all being crushed out of me by the cruel tyranny of petty circumstances. And then, amidst the dark night of your depression, there shone out, suddenly, a gleaming star of hope. You caught a vision of what your life was meant to be and might be. Through some word of scripture, through the voice of some preacher, through the haunting cadence of some remembered poem, God spoke to your soul. He opened your eyes to see the inner meaning and purpose of your work. He showed you that the routine, the drudgery, the hardship, which seemed to be slowly pressing the life out of you, were in reality his instruments for the formation of your character, his opportunities for the unselfish service of your fellowmen. What a wonderful difference it makes to a man's whole outlook when he grabs the great truth that life is a vocation, a call to make his little corner of the World a better, brighter, sweeter, happier place. What a power there is in simple goodness, to draw men heavenward: words may be misunderstood, and actions may be misinterpreted, but the light that radiates from a soul trying to live up to the highest that he knows, touches and blesses all who come near to him. That is the debt we owe to the Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him)I venture to say there is not a single convert who does not owe his gratitude to Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him) for his love for him, help, guidance, inspiration and as the example of a good person whom God in his great love has sent to us to follow.Again, we may have all experienced not once but many times the same word, same example, same deep inward inspiration, arousing us out of our lethargy and indifference awaking within us the spirit of divine discontent, bidding us to gird our loins to journey forth on the road that leads to God. Thank God, I was not disobedient unto the Heavenly vision.Homeward we are often led along the stranged ways, unexpected turnings take us back to bygone days—suddenly we go astray, though straight the track appears—and we find we have struck the road of the forgotten years.I have eventually taken up the study of the life of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). I realised that it is great sin to condemn that Holy man of God who established the kingdoms of God among the people who were unruly warfarers, idol worshippers and doers of all kinds of disgraceful things. He not only changed their modes of thought, their very habits and their morals but also brought them under one banner, one law, one religion, one culture, one civilization and one form of government. That nation which had not produced a single great man worth the name for centuries gave birth, under his influence and guidance, to thousands of noble souls who went forth to far off comers of the world to preach and teach the principles of Islam, morality and codes of living.He fulfilled his mission not through any wordly lure, oppression or tyranny, but by his captivating manners, his endearing moral personality and his convincing teaching. With his noble and gentle behaviour he befriended even his enemies. He won the hearts of the people with his love.When he began preaching, the ignorant nation turned against him. Abuses and stones were showered at his august person. Every conceivable torture and cruelty was perpetrated on him. This continued not for a day or two but uninterruptedly for thirteen long troublesome years. At last he is exiled. But he is not given respite even there. He is tormented in various ways in his abode of refuge. The whole of Arabia is incited against him. He is persecuted and hounded down continuously for full eight years there. He suffered it all, but he did not budge an inch from the stand he had taken. He was resolute, firm and inflexible in his purpose and stand. His nation offered to accept him as its king and to lay all the riches of the land at his feet if only he would leave preaching his religion and spreading his message. But he chose to refuse the tempting offers and to suffer for his cause, instead. Why? Why was it that he cared not a jot for riches and luxury, kingship and glory and ease and plenty? One has to ponder over it deeply to find an answer.Can any one imagine a higher example of self sacrifice, fellow-feeling and kind heartedness towards his fellow beings than that a man ruin his own happiness for the good of others, while those very people for whose betterment he is striving his utmost should stone him, abuse him, banish him and give him no quarter even in his exile, and that inspite of it all, he should refuse to abstain from striving for their well-being?Can any sincere person undergo so much suffering for a false cause? Can any dishonest speculator and visionary exhibit such firmness and determination for his ideal as to stick to his guns to the very last and remain unruffled and unperturbed in the face of dangers and tortures of every conceivable description when a whole country rises up in arms against him?This faith, this perseverance and this resolution with which he led his movement to ultimate success is, therefore, an eloquent proof of the supreme truth of his cause. Had there been the slightest touch of doubt and uncertainty in his heart, he could never have been able to brave the storm which continued in all its fury for twenty one long years. What more proof of perfect honesty of purpose, uprightness of character and sublimity of soul can there be? Who else can be a more truthful person than he who received such unique gifts and embellishment through a secret channel and still he outrightly pointed out the source of all his enlightenment and inspiration? All these factors lead to the irresistible conclusion that such a man was the true Messenger of God. Such was our Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). He was a prodigy of extraordinary merits, a paragon of virtue and goodness, a symbol of truth and veracity, a great apostle of God, His Messenger to the entire world. His life and thoughts, his truth and straight-forwardness, his piety and goodness, his character and moral, his ideology and achievements—all stand as unimpeachable proofs of his Prophethood. Any human being, who studies without bias his life and teachings will testify that verily he was the true Prophet of God, and the Quran is the true Book of God. No unbiased and serious seeker after truth can escape this judgement.Appendix - Works by Dr. M.H. Durrani1. Muhammad The Biblical Prophet (S.A.W). Published by International Islamic Publishers; 2nd ed edition (1983)2. The Quranic Facts about Jesus. Published by International Islamic Publishers; 1st ed edition (1983)3. Infallibility of Prophets. Published by International Islamic Publishers; 1st ed edition (1984)4. An Advisory Study on Infallibility of Prophets. Published by S. M. Mir (1971)

From white extremist to pious Muslim,


FEW conversions to Islam are as amazing as that of Mohammed Islam, a former ‘Paki-bashing’ member of white extremists British National Party (BNP). Formerly known as John Ord, he went from being an active BNP member to a devoted Muslim.
Mohammed Islam (pictured) said: "Growing up, I was never particularly religious. I only went to church for weddings, funerals and baptisms."
Raised in the north-east, John Ord joined the BNP at the age of 16 because his friends were members. He quickly bought into the BNP idea that all Asians and black people were a threat to his way of life.
He said: "My father wasn’t particularly bothered because he disliked Jews and Muslims anyway, and my mother put it down to a phase I was going through.
"Like most parents, they didn’t know what I got up to while I was out with the lads."
The Geordie described how he used to actively go ‘Paki bashing’ in an area where he knew there was a small but growing Asian community.
He said: "We would find them and give them a good kicking and say stereotypical things such as,‘Why are you in our country and why are you taking our shops and jobs?’"
However, he soon became frustrated with what he said were the "only two policies the BNP had at the time", which were ‘to beat them up’ and ‘to kick them out’.
Disillusioned, he left the party when he was in his early 20s. Still a racist, he went to London and got involved with other like-minded people who saw Islam as a threat.
He claimed that his new-found group would be specifically briefed by the police to go to meetings, to make provocative statements and cause trouble in front of Muslims. By doing this, he thought he was helping the police.
He said: "Our job was to help them get evidence. We would always get a response to our statements and this gave the police a reason to arrest Muslims. Often the police would use this method to target those Muslims who were wanted by other countries."
The turning point in Ord’s life came when he unknowingly bought a copy of the Quran for 20 pence from a book stall.
He said: "I bought the book because of the picture on the cover – it was the most beautiful picture I had ever seen, with the most gorgeous colours and a beautiful building. I thought I’d buy a cheap frame and ended up with a nice picture. I had no idea I had bought the Quran until I got home."
He decided to read it to find things to use against Muslims.
He said: "My mind was telling me that like any book written by humans, it would contain errors and contradictions. I had this view of Islam being this great bad religion."
He would read the Quran and take verses out of context and quote them to Muslims just to catch them out. He had no idea that he had just begun on a life-changing journey. While reading the Quran, he realised that Islam was totally opposite to what society had led him to believe.
He also observed that many Muslims were not following the teachings in their own book. He started to debate with Muslims regularly asking them why they were not following the Quran. He would question Muslims about why they were selling alcohol or inquire about women’s rights.
He said: "I even asked Muslims to intellectually prove that God exists and the Quran is the word of God. Time and time again I felt let down by Muslims because they had no explanation and even tried to justify their actions."
He returned back to the north-east in 1992.
By this time, he was enjoying debating with Muslims as he found them easy to catch out due to their lack of knowledge. He was also observing anomalies in their actions compared to what he was reading in the Quran.
In that same year, he approached a group of Muslims at a stall in Newcastle expecting to debate with them and win. He said he was surprised to find that they were able to defend themselves with ease.
He said: "Not only were they able to intellectually prove that God existed but also that the Quran was the word of God."
The group instead challenged Ord to try and intellectually prove that God did not exist and the Quran was not the word of God. If he succeeded, they would become Christians, but if he failed then he would have to become Muslim.
Without thinking twice about the surprising challenge, he had no hesitation in accepting it. He said: "I returned to the stall many times with what I thought were convincing arguments but they would always have answers. Eventually I got scared and backed off."
Four years later, he bumped into one of the Muslims from the stall and told him that he wanted to become a Muslim. He took his shahadah in November 1996 and became a Muslim himself.
Now called Mohammed Islam, he said: "Because I knew I was about to make a momentous decision that would affect the rest of my life, I felt as if a big rock was crushing me and that I couldn’t breathe.
"Once I was a 100 per cent sure that I wanted to become a Muslim and took the decision, I felt as if everything just lifted and I immediately felt better."
Most people close to Mohammed were not shocked by his conversion to Islam. He said: "I had made the decision to convert a year before and had told people that I was going to become a Muslim."
Although most of his friends accepted his decision and supported him, it was not the case with his family. He said: "My sister stopped talking to me and still does not talk to me. My father did not want to discuss it because Islam was a totally alien concept and an alien way of life to him. My mother seemed more concerned about what the neighbours would think. Initially she said I couldn’t pray in the house and I told her I’d pray in the garden. But my mother is okay about it, now."
Mohammed has lost all of his old friends. He said: "My friends were going out drinking and chasing girls and I had absolutely nothing in common with them anymore."
Mohammed said that he has no difficulty in practising his new faith because he had made a number of changes to his lifestyle a year before becoming a Muslim, such as not drinking alcohol.
He said: "Although becoming a Muslim has been a big step, it has not been a massive step in terms of practical issues."
The devout Muslim feels that he has been accepted more by non-Muslims and says many Muslims have accused him of being fanatic or fundamental just because he chooses to simply follow the fundamental principles of Islam.
Since converting, Mohammed has married and moved to the Midlands.
The 42-year-old is now looking ahead to a career in social work and is hoping to start his degree in September 2005. Once qualified, he wants to focus on the Muslim community and focus on problems that community leaders are not aware of or are simply ignoring.
He said: "I want to try and deal with these social problems that especially affect the youth, with an Islamic perspective."