Ideal conditions demand we limit cross gender interactions

Q:

Assalamu Alaykum,

Last semester in one of my classes, a non-Muslim student admitted that he had “racist” feelings towards Muslims. He justified his racism based on “feminist racism” in that he did not like the way Muslim women were treated. I responded by saying that Muslim women had rights when most women in the world did not have them and that the Prophet(SAW) wife Khadija(RA) was a businesswomen and that a lot of the hadith’s narrated came from Aisha(RA). I asked what he meant by “liberation” and that if “liberation” equated to “the less clothing the more freedom”,  then no, that is not liberation Islam values and that as a Muslim women, I feel empowered.

This semester, he apologized for his comments and says he started reading the Quran. He admitted that he had no knowledge of Islam and had biases which led him to inaccurate conclusions.

What I’m wondering is how to give Dawah and who to send it to since I cannot do it myself? He seems very interested in the Deen.

Time: Wednesday January 27, 2010 at 6:00 pm

Answer:

وعليكم السلام ورحمة الله وبركاته

A practical approach for dawah workers

Muslims are challenged on multiple levels; you have risen above the rest of us to share a part of you. It is perceived to me that you have in part fulfilled a portion of the ayah wherein Allah (SWT) states:  Invite towards the pathway of your Lord with wisdom…

Evaluation response:

Where we all learn from you:

You proved Islam gave more to the rights of women than other nations. Your question provoked his senses. Although you did well, you may not always have a person that is as ‘passive.’ Based on taking a class similar to the one you have taken, I would have added the following: Western statistics that illustrate equality in its truest sense never existed in modern times on multiple levels: via race, gender, etc. Here you could have presented data regarding the glass ceiling, etc.

He apologizes:

Your sincerity Alhamdulillah had a positive impact upon him. As Muslims we learn something from this non-Muslim counterpart: Accept you are wrong when you are wrong! Research your wrongs and rise!

Your future in dealing with such person(s):

Your answer at last!

This person seems rational. He is literate. Treat him as such. Follow the ayah: come together and view similarities. From this ayah, the art of persuasion is presented to us: Remember, people like people that are similar to them. This is how humans are. So, show him the similarities between Islam and other religions. Our love for prophets, angels, respect for the various books. Invite him to masjid programs. For example: February 19 we are having a program at our Islamic society, he should be asked to come with other non-Muslims so as to not feel intimidated. Invite them to attend Jummah prayers on the Friday of their choice. Give him the works of other new Muslim writers. Never talk about differences within Islam, it just confuses everyone and makes you sound negative!  Example, Indians pray like this, the French pray like that, and Arabs do it like this. Dawah means to invite, that should be our task. Let the scholars delve in the area of proofs and differences.

Be positive, be positive, and be more positive. Make people learn the value of (y)our Islam through (y)our character!  (Y)Our task is to say it as nicely as possible as it all is, then it is left with Allah (SWT) to Guide.

Congratulations to you, you are an awesome inspiration to doing your best in an environment that counters our values and beliefs. May Allah accept (y)our efforts.

Ameen

Allah Certainly Knows Best.

p.s. Always remember: cross-gender interactions can lead to a haram outcome. Try not to be alone with this person.

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