Advice for the Imams in the West regarding mosque attack in New Zealand

All praise is for Allah, the Lord of the Worlds; may peace and blessings be upon Muhammad, his family and companions. Thereafter,

Some brothers from the students of knowledge asked me for an advice, to clarify the best way for the Imaams and preachers in the West to deal with the attack on Masjid Noor in New Zealand.

I therefore quickly write this advice for them before the Jumu’ah prayers, perhaps some of
our brothers can translate it to English and other languages.

The first obligation upon you – the Imaams and preachers – is to not exaggerate and magnify this news. This is an individual incident and there are tens of millions of Muslims living in the West in safety and security. This applies to both the laws and rights [afforded to the Muslims in the West] as well as how the general public interact with them – so all praise is for Allah. As for exaggerating the issue and invoking doom for all the Muslims in general, this will result in harms, including:

  1. A weakening of patience, seeking hope in Allah and bearing difficulties for the sake of Allah the Most High. We should all ponder over the difficulties and troubles the Messenger (sal Allaahu alayhi wa sallam) and his followers faced; they were killed and punished with various forms of harm and torture, however this only increased them in their patience and firmness. Also ponder over the situation of our Muslim brothers in Myanmar (Burma), East Turkistan and other countries wherein the Muslims are being killed and punished.{O you who have believed, persevere and endure and remain stationed and fear Allah that you may be successful} [03:200]
  2. It places fear in the hearts of Muslims, with a sense of defeat and being downtrodden, which has a bad effect on the Muslims. In fact, this is exactly what the right-wing extremists want by targeting mosques and exploiting media against the Muslims.
  3. This type of emotional rhetoric has a bad effect on the Muslims, the situation is then exploited both politically and in media, to increase the vulnerability and isolation of Muslims, which is another goal of the perpetrators of this crime

 Therefore, both from a political and Islamic point of view, we must contain this incident within the correct context and not generalize [the crime] to governments and the common public. This is to avoid emotion, inciting Muslims, and arousing their emotions, which may lead them to abusive behaviour.

So the reaction of the Imaams and Du’aat specifically, and the Muslims in the west generally, should be a reaction of pardoning, forgiveness, tolerating harms and trials, and turning away from the ignorant. This is as Allah said,

{So pardon and overlook until Allah delivers His command. Indeed, Allah is over all things competent}

{Pardon them and over look, verily Allah loves those who do good}

{So turn aside from them and say, “Peace.” But they are going to know}

{So be patient. Indeed, the promise of Allah is truth. And let them not disquiet you who are not certain [in faith]}

The point is that the reaction of Muslims in the west should be one of pardoning, forgiving, tolerating and patience, not a reaction of killings and revenge.

Shaykh Al-Islaam Abul Abbaas Ibn Taymiyyah clarified this (may Allah have mercy upon him), he replied to a number of scholars who considered the above Aayaat abrogated. He mentioned how these Aayat are clearly applicable, these Aayaat are applied in times and places which necessitate it.

He said: “Any believer who resides in a land, in state of weakness, or in a time wherein he is weak, let him implement the Aayah of patience and pardoning to the one who harms Allah and His Messenger (through evil) from those who were given the scriptures and the Mushrikoon.” [Refer to his full statement in “As-Saarim Al-Maslool”]

Importantly, the above advice to forgive, pardon and tolerate does not mean that the Muslims do not demand their rights using the appropriate political channels and legal means , rather as Muslims we should do everything within our ability to protect the rights of Muslims, for the culprits to be brought to justice, for the relatives of victims and the inured to be fully compensated. We should request the Western governments to pass laws against all forms of racism, islamophobia and inciting against Muslims, so others are not swayed by such incidents into committing similar crimes.

Help is sought from Allah, upon His is out reliance, an there is no power nor might except by Allah.

Written by:

[Shaykh] AbdulHaq Turkmani

Friday, 9th Rajab, 1440

Corresponding to: 15th March, 2019.


[TN] The above was translated with slight changes in wording with the permission of the Shaykh.

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