The Path

Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar radiyalaahu anhuma had mentioned, "Whoever wishes to follow the way of another, should follow the ways of those who have passed away. These were the companions of Muhammad sallalaahu alayhi wassalam, who were the best people of this Ummah. Their hearts were most pious, their knowledge was deepest and they were least pretentious. They were people whom Allah Ta'ala had chosen to be companions of His Nabi sallalaahu alayhi wassalam and for the transmission of His Deen. You people should emulate their character and mannerisms. By the Rabb of the Kaabah! The Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wassalam were correctly guided."

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Remembering Arwah Umar Myanmar

All praise is for Allah. We praise Him and seek help from Him. We believe in Him and have complete trust in Him. There can be none to misguide the person the person whom Allah has guided and there can be none to guide the person whom Allah has caused to go astray.

Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Yusuf rahmatullah alayhi said, "We urge all our brothers, 'Spend a little time of your busy schedules to learn and practice dakwah. When returning to your homes or work, then keep making the effort with usool and tartib as specified.'"

One of the important usool and tartib of dakwah and tabligh effort is to spend at least 2.5 hours of one's time daily for the purpose of going to every Muslim person at our mohalla or locality when we are at home for the purpose of fostering relationship or silaturrahim, engaging in dakwah illallah and conveying the messages of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam. In this way, every Muslim's hearts in the mohalla will be attached and connected to the masjid. This will eventually enliven the aamal of the masjid like the aamal of Masjid-un Nabawi during the time of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam and the Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum where dakwah, ta'leem wata'luum (teaching and learning Deen), ibadat dhikr and khidmat (serving) were prevalent for 24 hours round-the-clock.

In order to achieve this purpose, in every localilty and from every masjid, each jamaat consists of two persons is formed, areas of visit are divided (so as not to miss out anyone), the time of mulaqat (visit) is set and specific targets as well as goals are specified. If 2.5 hours of time is spent diligently everyday, the Deeni mahul (environment) will take place. Mulaqats (visitations) are combined with tashkeel, no matter what time it is, even if it is at 12 midnight, visitation and tashkeel may be carried out if it suits the person that is being visited. If he is yet to perform solah in congregation, tashkeel him to join solah in congregation with other Muslims in the masjid. If he already frequenting the masjid for solah in congregation, then tashkeel him to sit with other Muslims in the circle of ta'leem in the masjid daily. If he already regularly sat in the circle of ta'leem every day, then tashkeel him to join other Muslims for the weekly ghusht in the locality. If he already joined the weekly local ghusht, then tashkeel him to join other Muslims for second ghusht at other nearby masjid area. And next tashkeel him to spend his time in the path of Allah for 3 days, 40 days and 4 months. In this way, everyone is constantly encouraged to sacrifice for and be steadfast in the path of Islam.

Just across the road from our old wooden surau/masjid, there was a newly completed rows of double-storey houses. There were about 250-300 newly built houses within that phase of development that made our mohalla (neighbourhood) grew even larger. At that time there was only the said old wooden surau as the place for worshiping for all the 90% Muslim dwellers of the 243 ha. resort-theme township.

One fine afternoon sometime in October 2000, we were making rounds for mulaqat in our mohalla. We met a few Indonesians and Bangladeshis who were a part of the large construction workforce who have left the completed site for construction works elsewhere. The said few workers were left behind to work on minor repairs and restoration upon complaint by the house-owners of the newly completed houses. We managed to gather about 7-9 workers in one of the houses that they used for their temporary stay. After a brief ta'ruf (introduction), one of us started to remind them about the importance of Imaan and the value of being a Muslim. They were also told about the many benefits of solah and the urgency to safeguard their solah.  As Maghreb was approaching, we then made 'cash tashkeel' for them to immediately get ready and join the other Muslims for solah by performing it in congregation in our nearby surau.

"But this man is not a Muslim", one of the Indonesian workers told us. "He is not?", we asked in surprise. "No, he is a Burmese from Myanmar", they replied. We thought we were talking to a group of Indonesian and Bangladeshi Muslims. The Burmese chap, in his 30's, could not be distinguished from the Indonesians. It was even harder to notice the difference since he just kept silent whilst listening attentively to our conversation and targhib. "Do you like what you just heard?", I asked him. "Yes, I like it very much," he replied with a smile. I said, "Well, if you want to know more about Islam, you are welcome to come along to the surau with your friends." His agreement to the invitation immediately drew excitement among his friends.We asked him to have a bath, and requested his friends to provide him with clean clothes to which they readily agreed.

He and all his friends came to the surau just before Maghreb adzaan wearing a shirt traditionally worn by Indonesian Muslim men, a sarung or lungi (traditionally and commonly worn even by the Burmese Government officials) and a topee. He performed Maghreb solah with us and we took him to the surau's corridor to have a chat whilst a guest ustaadz delivered a lecture that night to the other Musholeens. He was a Buddhist. He has small tattoos on his fingers which he tried to hide from us. He has many Muslim friends when he grew up in Myanmar. He used to stand outside the masjid in Myanmar waiting for his friends while they performed solah in worship. He had a small factory there but he had to flee his native lands when he had a serious dispute with a local military officials there. He lived in Thailand for a few years before deciding to come to Malaysia.

He readily agreed upon our dakwah to him to embrace Islam. In the company of his friends, we explained to him the meaning of the Kalimah Shahadah and coached him in the recitation of the Kalimah. He proficiently professed and testified to Islam after a few attempts. While the ustaadz were still delivering the lecture, we read to him and his friends stories of the Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum from the book Fadha'il Aamal by Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Zakariya rahmatullah alayhi. It has already passed Esha' time and we continued reading while waiting for the ustaadz to wrap-up his lecture. At this point, the Burmese brother said, "I like the story of this man." His words drew smiles from those people sitting nearby him. "Oh! You ought to like him. We all do. He is one of the great companions of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam," the reader said referring to Sayyidina Umar bin Khattab radiyalaahu anhu. It was then decided that he should take the namesake of Umar as his Muslim name to his rejoice. 

It was originally planned for the ustaadz and the other Musholeens to choose a Muslim name for him. Nevertheless, we spoke to the chairman of the surau committee to arrange for a formal recitation of the Shahadah to be carried out by the ustaadz and to be witnessed by the others, in honour and celebration of the blessed occasion. A man who had not been receptive to the effort of dakwah and tabligh wept in happiness witnessing Umar's testification to Islam. Alhamdulillah, praise be only to Allah, he and many others had since positively change his view on the importance of the work of dakwah and tabligh.

Since then, Umar had been spending time with us on regular basis, going out in the path of Allah for 3 days for the effort of dakwah and tabligh, learning Imaan and practising the Sunnah of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam. We also regularly brought him to the dakwah and tabligh markaaz at Masjid Jame' Seri Petaling, Kuala Lumpur, where he sat in the circle of fellow Burmese immigrants, meeting and communicating with them in their own native language. He eventually managed to get a Burmese translated copy of Fadha'il Aamal for his own use and reading. He received much help and assistance from the surau people and people easily grew fond of him. Not long after, he married an Indonesian woman and the couple became close to my family.

Towards the end of his life, he was employed by our masjid committee to do the cleaning work of the masjid which suited him best. Allah made it easier for him to safeguard his solah. In 2010, whilst I was in khuruuj in the path of Allah for 40 days, I received a devastating news of his demise. May Allah fill his grave with noor. Ameen.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

The Letter from King Abdul Aziz Aali Saud to Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Ilyas and Maulana Ihteshamul Hassan rahimahumallah


No: 111/2/21
Date: 3rd Safar, 1357H (Monday 4th April, 1938)

The Government of Saudi Arabia
The Royal Office

Respected Muhammad Ilyas and Muhammad Ihteshamul Hassan, may Allah grants (both of you) peace and tranquility.

Assalamu'alaykum Warrahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

Verily his majesty the king had personally studied and reviewed your letter and his majesty the king ordered me to express his gratitude for your noble efforts in dakwah towards the faith of our solafussoleheen and your good ministry in this field. I pray to Allah to bestow upon all of us taufeeq in engaging into the efforts that is full of goodness and benefits.

Wassalamu'alaykum Warrahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

The Royal Office

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

The Lecture of Hazrat Maulana Saeed Ahmad Khan rahmatullah alayh Delivered in England: The Work Commissioned by Allah Ta'ala is "the" Work (Part 2)

Excerpts from a booklet entitled "The Letters of Maulana Saeed Ahmad Khan Saheb": Translated by Maulana Mohammed Kadwa (Publisher: Idara Isha'at-e-Diniyat (P) Ltd. 

Following the recitation of a few verses from the Holy Quran, Hadhrat Maulana continued: Do not look at who controls the country and the lands. the most favourable outcome will be for that of the people of taqwa - the pious. The mission of dakwah is a very powerful and dynamic force to be reckoned with. Don't ever attribute the work of dakwah to yourself with the intention to boost your self-image and increase your wealth. Don't employ the work of dakwah as a means of income. Whilst despatching a jamaat to America, Bhai Abdul Wahhab (of Raiwind, Pakistan) vehemently instructed the members of the jamaat not to talk about business nor engage in any financial transaction. Upon the jamaat return, one of them remarked, "Although we didn't talk about business nor did we engage in any commercial activities, we still did business." Bhai Abdul wahhab was astonished. He asked, "How else did you conduct business then?" He answered, "The only thing we did is that we analysed the goods on the American market resolving to manufacture and export the same products on our return home."

Dakwah should be for the sole pleasure of Allah Ta'ala so that the Deen of Allah is elevated and the life-style of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayh wasallam is spread and promoted. This should be our chief objective. If you suffer any pecuniary or physical loss in support of this cause, express gratitude unto Allah Ta'ala.

Dakwah should be instituted with a firm belief in the unseen. The one who engages in dakwah on the basis of what he sees, is not engaged in dakwah in the true sense of the word. Many Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum passed away during the life-time of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam. What did they take with them following the mission of dakwah? Friends! Many when not even fully shrouded with the kaffan. Some died in extreme thirst and hardship. The vision was focussed towards the unseen.

Invite unto Allah Ta'ala. Don't take up dakwah for personal following and honour nor for your own vested interests or else it would result in the unseen help of Allah Ta'ala being withdrawn. If one engages in dakwah making his worldly pursuits his objective, he will be overwhelmed by the misfortunes of the creation and duped into focusing his attention exclusively towards the asbaab (means and causes). If we look towards the unseen, the divine help of Allah Ta'ala will no doubt descend, regardless of our limited means. Allah Ta'ala manifested this fact when He assisted, in the Battle of Badr, the 313 Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum who centred the vision upon the unseen. On the other hand, He taught them a lesson in the Battle of Hunayn wherein they relied upon their means and resources.

If one advances whilst directing his attention towards the unseen in spite of all the obstacles he is faced with, Allah Ta'ala will eradicate them all as though they are cobwebs being destroyed.

We refer to 'purana saati' (veteran workers) as those who have spent 10-20 years in this field or as those who spend 4 months in this field even though they lack in conforming to the local dakwah principles. In actual fact, a veteran worker is he who takes part in ta'leem and ghusht and spends 3 days monthly and 40 days yearly in this path whilst strictly adhering to the principles. The one who has spent 10-20 years whilst shying away from the dakwah principles cannot be referred to as veteran worker. Dakwah should be extended towards this (i.e. taking heed of the principles) whilst endeavouring to inculcate the same within us.

Daescribing a few examples, Hadhrat Maulana went on to say: I once invited my brother to spend 40 days in the path of Allah. Scattering his farming tools before him, he retorted, "How can I ever come out from all this." Look at the glory of Allah that the very next day he was involved in some fight resulting in a broken skull. He finally had to spend two months in hospital. He could not sacrifice 40 days for the sake of Allah, was compelled to spend two months in hospital.

The superintendent of a musafir khana (travellers inn) was once asked to come out for 3 days with a jamaat visiting the suburbs of Madinah Munawarrah. He excused himself saying, "I am charged with such duties in the musafir khana that taking leave for just one night is not possible." Sometime later I met him in Makkah Mukarramah. Upon inquiring, he said, "I am waiting for the last 10 days for my daughter who is expected to arrive from Zahran and I fear an additional 10-day wait." The problem is that the prestige of Deen has vanished (from the hearts of the people). That is why he could not sacrifice 3 days for Deen but he wasted 10-20 days for his daughter.

I once invited a soldier (to come out into the path of Allah Ta'ala). He forwarded many excuses saying, "How can I ever go out? Are you aware of the punishment meted out for absenteeism and so forth." I said, "I am sure it would be less severe than the punishment of Jahannam." He made preparations to leave for 4 months, officially took leave and set out in the path of Allah. When he finally returned after an absence of 5 months instead of the official 4 months, a thick file of complaints were lodged against him. When asked about the reason for his extended absence, he replied, "I went to learn about Deen and Imaan. Hence the slight delay." When this complaint was lodged with the senior officer, he wrote out, "I am in urgent need of a man who has the attributes of this person." Without delay, he issued an order favouring his reinstatement and promotion.

There was a telephone operator in Sudanese fire brigade whose job was to notify his co-workers in the event of any emergencies. Following extensive mehnat (effort) upon him, he set out for one chilla (40 days) and returned to work with a grave concern for his solah. Leaving his work aside, he would proceed towards solah whenever the prescribed hour of solah would approach. Upon witnessing this scene on various occasions, one of the officers asked, "Where are you off to? What would happen in the event of any calls coming in about an outbreak of fire?" He replied, "I am off to extinguish a fire that is much more intense than the fire of this world." (In Fadha'il Solah, Section 1 Hadith No. 8, it has been narrated in detail that Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam said, "As the time of solah approaches, an angel calls out, 'O children of Adam! Rise and extinguish the fire you have started burning upon yourself because of your sins.') When this report reached the chief officer who was a Christian by faith, he said, "Unconditional permission is granted for worshiping the Almighty. And the officer who was preventing him from worship should serve relief for him during solah times."

When Babu Shabeer Saheb set out for 4 months to America, 6 instead of 4 months had elapsed by the time he returned from Makkah and other places. At that time he was holding a post of deputy director in a certain company. Upon his return he was informed that he is dismissed from his post. He suffered no grief nor was he concerned in the least bit. Look at the grandeur of Allah Ta'ala that the director retired, the second in line had either died or was involved in some misfortune or the other. Filling the vacuum had, as a result, become a perplexing issue. Finally an order appointing Babu Shabeer as the new director was issued. Even after spending 6 months instead of 4, he was promoted from deputy director to director. (The idea is to come out into the path of dakwah and tabligh and build yaqeen that everything is possible from Allah Ta'ala).

Intending to spend time in the path of Allah, a brother in Pakistan applied for a passport. The order was issued (from the top) that his application should be turned down. he used to visit the immigration office every 8 days and every time his request was turned down by the officials retorting, "You are still adamant in spite of being refused on so many occasions!" One one occasion, the official's fury had reached a point of indignation. "Your application has been rejected but yet you still insist on harassing us!?", he reproached. The applicant countered back, "If I had applied considering you to be Allah, I would have never approached you. I believe Allah to be the true Allah - if He wills, I will get a passport." Without delay, an order was issued that he be granted a passport.

Friends! The promise of Allah's assistance is subjected to dakwah. "If you help (the cause of) Allah, He will help you." [Surah 47, Verse 7]

Remember, we are nurtured by a transcendal system and with (the barakat) of solah were are being (spiritually) fostered. Medium and causes play no role in this whatsoever. However, means and medium may be adopted according to need. Our minds should be focused upon the unseen system of Allah. He will ensure that all our needs are met with the work of dakwah. 

Recalling the poverty of the Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum who took part in Sariyatul Ambar (the expedition of Ambar), Hadhrat Maulana said: The Sahabah who took part in this expedition used to survive on a single date for 24 hours at a stretch. They would suck on the date followed by a sip of water. Consequently, in accordance of His divine code, Allah Ta'ala assisted them in such way that He provided them with a huge sea-fish that according to Bukhari's narration, they lived on it for 18 days and according to Bayhaqi's narration the fish lasted them for a whole month. Part of the fish still remained as they returned to madinah Munawarrah. Remarking upon this, Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam said, "This is the sustenance of Allah Ta'ala which He provided for you." Describing the size of the fish, Hadhrat Maulana said: The oil its eye socket contained, was likened to a well. At least 8 or 9 of the Sahabah jumped into it massaging themselves with the oil whilst supplementing their strength at the same time.

We are not veteran workers as yet. People refer to us as purana saati or veteran workers because of the time we spent in this field whereas, on account of our attributes, we are not fit to be called veteran. A veteran is he whose sacrifices and attributes are always on the increase. As a person intensifies his sacrifices, so will his commendable attributes increase. "Veterans" are those who consistently make du'a for the removal of all hurdles (and continue treading the path).

Allah Ta'ala will undoubtly bring the day when jamaats will set out from here (Britain) to all corners of the world. Many find setting out in jamaats a great burden on themselves but they get familiar and settle down once they set out and proceed. Therefore brothers! Form an intention and present yourselves for 4 months each.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

The Lecture of Hazrat Maulana Saeed Ahmad Khan rahmatullah alayh Delivered in England: The Work Commissioned by Allah Ta'ala is "the" Work (Part 1)

Excerpts from a booklet entitled "The Letters of Maulana Saeed Ahmad Khan Saheb": Translated by Maulana Mohammed Kadwa (Publisher: Idara Isha'at-e-Diniyat (P) Ltd. 

Allah Ta'ala has structured the foundation of His Deen upon the work of dakwah. Deen can only regain it's universal lushness and vendure upon the buoyant revival of the mission of dakwah. Allah Ta'ala instituted this mission of dakwah with many sacrifices and not with ease and comfort. Subjecting 124,000 Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum to numerous sacrifices, the work of dakwah forged ahead. Hadhrat Nuh alayhis salam was made to undertake dakwah for a lenghty period of 950 years. He was subjected to such sacrifices that he would get "swamped" by the stones hurled at him and Hadhrat Jib'reel alayhis salam would then come to his rescue and haul him out of the mound stones. Similarly, Hadhrat Ibrahim alayhis salam, Hadhrat Musa alayhis salam and other Prophets alayhimus salam were all constrained to toil hard in the field of dakwah. Finally,  Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam was made to embark upon the task of dakwah with a collective struggle and sacrifice of all the Ambiyaa alayhimus salam put together. As he himself once remarked, "In regard to Deen, nobody was harrassed as I was." The implementation of dakwah brings in it's wake numerous mountains and hurdles as this creates the yaqeen of Allah. The yaqeen of the power and control of Allah Ta'ala can never be embedded into the heart until and unless one is faced with hurdles and obstacles. Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam adopted his prophetic sacrifices as well, thereby drawing the Ummah to follow suit.

Following the demise of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam, Hadhrat Abu Bakr radiyalaahu anhu was faced with the opposition of all quarters the moment he extended dakwah to the people. He was faced with many internal problems. meanwhile, extensive preparations were underway to attack Madinah Munawarrah thereby increasing their external problems as well.

We tend to panic over the most trivial hurdles and obstacles. The Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum had to put up with relentless obstacles whilst residing in Makkah. This humble servant means that the most seemingly trivial hurdles of the Sahabah radiyalaahu anhum surpasses the greatest of our hurdles. Apart from the worldly losses they sustained in Makkah, their lives and the lives of their wives, children and parents were all being sacrificed in support of this cause but they valiantly faced up to all the stumbling blocks in the wake of this mission. As a result, following their arrival in Madinah Munawarrah they were able to challenge the mightiest of internal as well as external obstacles and break them as though they were breaking spiders web. The hurdles faced by one who continuously engages in the work of dakwah are nothing more than spiders web. He who has assumed Allah as his Rabb and Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam as his Prophet can never under any circumstances say that he has no time for Deen. In fact, he ought to assert that he has no time for dunya (world) under all circumstances. 

This worldly life is but a life of fun and futile play resembling the life of dreams. Upon reaching the grave, one astoundingly realises that the entire world and it's pursuits which he employed as a pretext to avoid setting aside time for Deen, is nothing but a life of futile amusement and dreams. After his death he will regret and lament (over his life wasted away in the dunya but it would be to no avail). 

Friends! The work which people tender as an excuse is not work in reality. Work in it's true sense is the activity delegated by Allah. As Allah Ta'ala declares: "And I have not created Jinn and mankind (for any reason) except that they worship Me." [Surah 51: Verse 56]

All other forms of activities and pre-occupations are nothing but excuses. Isn't Istinjaa (post-excretory ablution) some form of activity as well? Is this not a necessity? Failure to attend to the call of nature will no doubt have a disastrous effect on the life of a person. A person is therefore compelled to visit the toilet but in accordance to his need. Have you heard of anyone visiting the toilet to take a rest? This is so because it is not a resting-place but a place of necessity.

Work in its true senses lies in obeying the divine commands of Allah Ta'ala and following the blessed life-style of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam. Allah ta'ala had delegated many representatives to carry out His work. In other words, they (the representative) were instructed to establish a relationship between Allah and His servants. But alas! we are guilty of forsaking the work of Allah Ta'ala by engagng in eating, drinking, building houses, running businesses and other futile amusements! Then are we not liable for divine retribution?

I (Maulana Saeed Ahmad Khan rahmatullah alayh)  had the opportunity of visiting Bangladesh when it was still under Pakistani rule. I met about eight Burmese youth. All of them were Surtees - hailing from Surat, Rander and suburbs - who were great businessmen in the glorious times of Rangoon (before the communist regime came into power). On many occasions, aided by Rangoon funds, rugs worth well over 80,000 Rupees used to be purchased for the masjids (of India). The yarn used in the manufacture of those rugs was so thick that they had to be trimmed at least twice before they were suitable for sajdah purposes. (Hadhrat Maulana recollected just this one example to express the wealth of Burmese in former times). Upon inquiring about their purpose of coming over to Bangladesh, they replied that they were owners of massive factories and businesses but they lost everything in just one day. They were owners of those factories and businesses in the morning but by the evening all of it fell into the hands of the government. I asked them, "Is the Almighty Allah of Rangoon different to the Allah of this country? At least your lives were saved out there. Here you may lose your lives as well. There is no annihilator but Allah Ta'ala. Only Allah Ta'ala is the saviour as well as the annihilator. On account of certain divine principles, He either destroys or He protects. If you lead a life of disobedience unto Allah Ta'ala, He will in accordance to His fixed principles, destroy you. If not in this world, He will destroy you in the Hereafter.

Following a detailed narrative about Spain and Russia, Hadhrat Maulana went on to say further: If only people were to proclaim and promote the Kalimah of Allah and adopt the life-style of Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wasallam on a universal level, Allah Ta'ala, in conformity to His divine code will bring about a life of peace and tranquility in this world. Once the work of dakwah is promoted, churches will transformed into masjids or else masjids will turn into churches. Allah Ta'ala doesn't require the masjid structures but He looks towards the 'aamal of the masjids. Once the 'aamal of the masjids take leave from the Muslims, the masjids are destined to become churches and stables. Allah Ta'ala does not care about the aftermath of the masjids once their 'aamal are relinquished.

Many years ago, whilst visiting Baitul-Muqaddas, I explicitly mentioned that it (Baitul-Muqaddas) is not in the hands of Muslims. A place where the Imaam deceives the people by performing twenty rakaats of taraweeh with Surah Rahman alone and where naked women shamelessly tour about! How can one then consider it to be in the hands of the Muslims? On the face of it, it was in the hands of the Muslims but in reality it was not. Once the 'aamal of the masjids are done away with, Allah Ta'ala does not require the masjid structure even though it may be Masjid al-Aqsa. The country and the earth belongs to Allah alone. He is at liberty to hand it over to whomever He pleases - to our enemy our to our friend.

Monday, 6 August 2012

The Early Maqami Effort

BeforeI had been introduced to the effort of dakwah and tabligh, my married life generally confined me at home or workplace. If I was not at home, I would be in the office. And if I was not in the office, I would be at home with my family. I was not the outgoing type, though occasionally I would hang around with my college mates. But my involvement with the effort of dakwah and tabligh, was a life changing experience for me. I started to divide my time between home, workplace and the masjid.

In the early days of my involvement in the effort of dakwah and tabligh, I felt like a lonely helpless stranger lost in a city where all its inhabitants were trying very hard to chase him out, away from the city boundaries. As if, on everyone's forehead, there was a sticker sign that said, "Be like us, or else get out!" At other times, I felt like I was at war alone against the rest of the world, with only stick and stones as my weapons of protection. In those days, I was constantly reminded by Allah Ta'ala about the weakness and helplessness of man, particularly my own self.

The presence of the first jamaat from the Kuala Lumpur Markaz for three days at our surau/masjid had created a phenomena among the people in my mohalla (neighbourhood). All of a sudden, Tablighi Jamaat apperead as the main subject of discussion between two people or a group or an assembly of people in the neighbourhood. I'm sure there were many positive responds in the discussions that took place among the people in our mohalla. Unfortunately, I could only say what I had experienced in the surau/masjid environment were simply tantamount to tribulation against me. What I'm about to write is my fragile feeling at that point of time. Thus, I might be misjudging certain people and perhaps one may argue that I could have been more objective of the whole situation back then, but I am trying to be honest in writing about what I felt at that point of time.

Initially, I have difficulty in accepting the fact that not all Muslims are readily receptive to the effort of dakwah and tabligh. I started to share my concern and convey the work of dakwah and tabligh to whoever that I could in our mohalla from Maghrib to Esha', when I could only managed to find the time during weekdays.   However, there were a particular intimidating group of people at the surau that stood above the rest of the other worshipers. Sometimes, usually after Esha'', I would be surrounded by 5-6 people asking me bullying questions. To much of my annoyance, their questions and queries always tend to brand me belonging to a separate sect of Muslims. I was very disheartened and dejected for not being able to provide them with appropriate answers. They then started to poke fun at me, jesting and laughing at my disabilities.  One of them who was an ordinary man without indepth religious knowledge, even went to the extent of carrying a thick kitaab around in jeering  manner, looking always in scoffing mood to prove me wrong and refute whatever that I said. Perhaps they felt threaten with my presence and sharing of thoughts. Perhaps they felt it was not appropriate for me, as a newcomer to the surau, to take on them in Deeni matters. Perhaps I was rushing them to embrace the effort of dakwah and tabligh too soon. It followed that for almost three years, I felt a high degree of humiliation and embarrassment in our own surau and mohallaImam Al was fortunate to be spared with such tribulation.

Before my wife embraced the effort of dakwah and tabligh, I returned home to find no comfort to the trials and tribulations that I face in our mohalla. Once, I laid sleeplessly in bed feeling devastated about an argument that I had earlier with one person from the group. If such unfortunate thing happens to me now, I could always rely on comforting words from my wife. But it was different then. At that point of time, I feared things would turn for worse if I talked to her. Before I knew it, I found myself driving my car hoping that I could still meet the person in the vicinity of the surau. Indeed I found him still having chai (tea) at the nearby tea-stall with his group. I briskly extended words of apologies to him and returned home. It was the only way that I could find peace  within myself.

Alhamdulillah, all praise only be to Allah, in those trying times I also found peace and reconciliation when I always found the answers, solutions and justifications to my troubles in the most incredible circumstances. Sometimes I found an answer in fadha'il ta'leem, sometimes I got a solution in bayaan, and at other times I obtained justifications in circles of muzakarah. Truly Allah is Most Merciful, Most Gracious.

I learnt in the later phase of my life that is not so creditable to work in the the favourable and conducive environment as in the unfavourable and adverse conditions along with safeguarding our principles and trend. The ability and capability of those who engage in the work of dakwah and tabligh is best judged in such situations. That is why Hadhrat Maulana Inam'ul Hassan rahimahullah used to say time and again that we should not be worried by the disfavour and opposition because Allah is the doer. When Allah Ta'ala comes to doing, even idols would divulge his oneness and the voice of truth would rise from the establishment of untruth.

The jamaat going out in the path of Allah to different regions in the world do not come across same environment - somewhere an opposition to the work of dakwah and tabligh is experienced while at some other places even stay in the masjid is not allowed. If they are to work under such adverse circumstances, the first and foremost advice is to be lenient as far as possible. If the opponent stick to his rigid attitude then silence should be adopted, a strict attitude on our part, controversy or argument in response is harmful in this path. Therefore once Hadhrat Maulana Inam'ul Hassan rahimahullah said, "Explain your view politely while in the path of Allah, avoid rough talks. Such an attitude is to be adopted with the brothers that they accept the work. They are to be persuaded politely so that they may not get bewildered. In case they become rigid, nicely wind up the conversation. Not that you too become rigid. Don't become rigid, but persuade politely. Rasulullah sallalaahu alayhi wassalam had also been enjoined by Allah to be polite."

May Allah Ta'ala inculcate mutual affection in the entire Ummah.