Posted by: Dawud Israel | December 13, 2007

Reactive Dawah

Update: I added a 10th reason to avoid reacting, which is actually a proof of this working.

There is a psychological dynamic at play in the Muslim and non-Muslim world. It revolves around 3 factors: media, Muslims and Islamophobes.

An incident happens involving Muslims and Islamophobes isolate that incident and spin it around in the media in such a way that all of a sudden Muslims feel they MUST react to it. Whether it’s the Danish cartoons, a teddy bear in Sudan or the killing of a Muslim girl by her father, Muslims should NOT react. This is what I think is a trap or to those who are familiar with these incidents known as a Psy-Op (manipulating media, events and facts to incur psychological damage on an enemy).

9 10 Reasons Why Muslims should NOT react to the media:

#1-Reacting to these events has not done anything to help Muslims or better our image in the world.

#2-Muslims do not react in the same manner. When we react to an event, we react in a hundred different ways, thus confusing people even more. Furthermore, it is impossible to get Muslims to react with the same views.

#3-Reacting means you are following their agenda. It shows you have an Inferiority Complex (which sadly is true for most Muslims) but if you don’t react you are seen as being confident and you are given respect based on that.

#4-It’s a waste of time. You fall into a pattern of massive reaction and little action. You react to every little thing and being so preoccupied with them you don’t have time to change the status quo.

#5-Every moment is a Dawah opportunity, not just moments of reaction. This is Shaytaan’s deception to make you think you are proactively doing Dawah during these events, when in fact, from the perspective of the non-Muslim, you are merely doing something they see as natural.

#6-What business is it of yours to make somebody else’s problem, your problem? And when you have nothing to gain from it, but more to lose it becomes pointless. It’s commendable to try and improve conditions of poverty but to behave as if the entire burden of this event is on your shoulders is just silly and affects your emaan.

#7-The mere fact you react automatically proves you feel you are guilty in one way or another. If you show that you feel guilty–than no matter what you say, they will remember that you acted.

#8 Imam Shafi (ra) was asked a question. Presumably, because of the questioner and the nature of the question he remained silent–not knowing whether to respond or to be quiet. These words are attributed to him:

Say what you will in abuse,
My silence is an answer to the scoundrel –
I am not devoid of an answer, but:
It is not necessary for a lion to answer the dogs.

(Dīwān ash-Shāfiýī p.143; Aĥsanul Qasas 4/106)

#9 Hadith: Silence in the face of a heated argument is better.
Sa’eed bin Musayyeb says: Once the Prophet (saws) was sitting with his Companions, and one person used insulting words against Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him), causing him pain. But Abu Bakr remained silent. The person again used bitter words against Abu Bakr, and still Abu Bakr did not respond. The third time when this ignorant person hurt Abu Bakr with his tongue Abu Bakr tried answering back.

At this point the Prophet (saws) got up. Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) asked him, “Are you displeased with me, O Messenger of Allah?” The Prophet (saws) replied, “No, but (when you remained silent) an angel came down from the heaven responding to this man’s talk. But the moment you started replying to that man, the angel went away and the devil sat down. And I cannot sit where the devil is sitting.”(Abu Dawood 041 4878)

#10 There was a funny news event involving Muslims a brother was telling me about. The news reporter had a well-known Imam (his name escapes me at the moment) and a well known Islamophobe who isn’t worthy of mention (:D). The Islamophobe was replying to a question posed by the news reporter and then the news reporter innocently asked the Imam, “Do you have anything to say to that?” The Imams reply was, “Oh no one listens to her anyways!” This, is true because this Islamophobe is totally ignored by Muslims. These people want fame and they get it at the expense of manipulating Muslims. Is this Islamophobe famous? Maybe in certain circles, but one thing is certain–she would be globally famous if Muslims had reacted, which in this case they didn’t.

Subhana kallahumma wa bihamdik ash-haduana la illaha illa ant astaghfiruka wa atubu ilayk. Ameen.


  1. I think that it is a double edged sword. Basically we’re damned if we do and we’re damned if we don’t.
    If the Muslim community is silent, we lose. If we’re not we also lose.
    It’s kind of a lose-lose situation.
    So I say we just react to the media.

  2. i think we should choose the issues we want to react upon.

  3. It is an issue of commanding the good and forbidding the evil. If we remain silent, we have abandoned this principle that has uplifted this Ummah for 1400. It is the reason Allah said of us, “you are the best ummah…”

  4. I would have to agree with Sarah that we should choose what to react on. It is impossible to think that the pious Muslims of the past reacted to EVERY single thing. But some reaction is inevitable and necessary.

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