Is your community torn apart by petty jealousies, conflicts and apathy? Do you feel like you don’t belong, or have nowhere to turn to for spiritual fulfillment?
Our friends from SeekersHub Perth Point composed a list from the One Body Study Circle, where Ustadh Amjad Tarsin offered from practical tips of how to rejuvenate those community bonds and nurture healthy communities.
The greatest crime: Apathy of good people & spiritual cannibalism
- The greatest crime is not the evil of evil people, it is the apathy of good people.
- One of the great scholars (ulema) of our times, Murabit Al Hajj, could never handle backbiting. When it occurred, he would stop it, or walk away.
- The Prophet said, whoever relieves a tribulation or difficulty for a believer, Allah will remove a calamity from them on the Day of Judgement. We have a degree of duty of mercy to all of humanity and all of creation.
- Whoever veils the faults of another Muslim, Allah will veil their faults in this world and the hereafter, and whoever exposes the fault of another Muslim, Allah will expose their faults.
- A lot of people commit sins, then they feel like they can never get close to Allah. That is from the devil (Shaitaan), not from our faith.
- Backbiting is like spiritual cannibalism, and it’s very easy to fall into.
Prevention of harm…or establishing the good?
- A principle of sharia is the prevention of harm is of a higher priority than the establishment of benefit. The Prophet ﷺ, said at the end of times there would be a lot of bloodshed. He gave us advice: to keep our tongue and keep our hands away from evil. This means not to incite not to incite things verbally, and to not actually engage in the harm of others.
- The Prophet ﷺ said to assist your brother whether he is the oppressor or the one being oppressed. Assisting an oppressor means to stop them.
I was sick and you did not visit Me…
- Visiting the sick builds love, and the Prophet ﷺ said the one who does not show compassion to the elderly is not one of us.
- Allah will say on the Day of Resurrection, “O son of Adam, I was sick and you did not visit Me.” The person will say, “O my Lord, how can I visit you when you are the Lord of the Worlds, You are unlike your creation, You are free of any possibility of even having something like this.” Allah will say, “Did you not know my servant was sick and you did not visit them?” If you had visited that person you would have found Me with them.”
Watering the tree of love…not macho enough?
- Imam Al Haddad said brotherhood and sisterhood is like a tree; you water that tree by visiting each other from time to time.
- According to hadith, a man was walking on a path for the sake of Allah to visit a brother. An angel appeared before him and asked, “Where are you going?” The man said, “I’m visiting someone who is beloved to me.” The angel asked, “Is there something you need from him, like a favour?” The man said, “No, I’m just doing it for Allah. “The angel said, “I bring you glad tidings from Allah, that Allah loves you for you going to visit your brother.”
- The Prophet ﷺ said that if you love someone you should tell them. Nowadays, people feel too macho to tell each other that they love them.
- Another thing that cultivates love is giving gifts; gifts that they would like.
- Nowadays people give nicknames that are offensive or silly. Give people nicknames that are beautiful.
- Defend the honour of people even if they don’t know about it, and make duaa for people in their absence. Make duaa without them even asking you.
- Make excuses for people, look for their good qualities. It’s easy to look for the bad qualities of any human, however, we should be searching for their good qualities.
- Reconciling between people is very important, as people are able to hold a lot of grudges against each other. It’s so important that it’s even permissible to lie to reconcile between people.
- Habib Ali Jifri mentioned that a good way to know your place in another’s heart, is look inside yourself and see how much you love them.
- A teacher’s love for their students is far greater than the students love for them. The teacher may not express it in words however their love and concern is greater.
- Cornell West said that he has seen a lot of people who are successful in life because they were supported by someone who gave them a lot of love. In contrast, many people who have difficulty in life were not shown much love. That’s why the Prophet ﷺ said, “You will not enter paradise until your faith is complete and your faith is not complete until you love one another. Should I tell you what will build love between each other? Spread the Salaam (greetings of peace) between each other.
Feature photo by IIOC Masjid Omar AlFarouk.
Resources for Seekers
- “Come, come, whoever you are” – Imam Khalid Latif on feeling estranged from the Muslim community
- VIDEO: Activism & Social Change – Prophetic Principles for Transformative Community Service
- Feeling unmosqued, demosqued and no-thank-you-mosqued
- I Became Muslim and Am Now Lonely and Depressed. What Can I Do?
- Dealing With Depression Caused by Unemployment and Loneliness