Monday, October 8, 2012

A Talk by Dr Zakir Naik

Assalamualaikum and greetings everyone! Long time no see eh..

Alhamdulillah, last Thursday, I was given the opportunity to listen to a talk given by Dr Zakir Naik; a professional in the area of comparative religion. The topic was "Dakwah or Destruction" (Actually, I'm not sure what is the title exactly but that was what I heard him say). During this lecture, Dr Zakir Naik had talked for about 15 minutes and the remaining one hour was allocated for the audience to ask questions.

First of all, Dr Zakir had defined what dakwah means. Dakwah means invitation; that is an invitation to Islam. This invitation is for the non Muslims. In contrast, islah is an invitation for Muslims. Islah means to repair or to improve.

Next, Dr Zakir had elaborated on Surah Al-Imran verse 110:
"Ye are the best of peoples, evolved for mankind, enjoining what is right, forbidding what is wrong, and believing in ALLAH.."
According to Dr Zakir, if we do not enjoin what is right, forbid what is wrong and do not believe in ALLAH, then we are not worthy to be called 'the best of people'. So to be the 'best of people', dakwah needs to be done. We must perform this job of dakwah because ALLAH has warn us in the following verse:
"Say: If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates, or your kindred; the wealth that ye have gained; the commerce in which ye fear a decline: or the dwellings in which ye delight - are dearer to you than Allah, or His Messenger, or the striving in His cause;- then wait until Allah brings about His decision: and Allah guides not the rebellious." (At-Taubah:24)
If we do not perform our job then, ALLAH will replace us. A clear example can be seen in the line of prophethood. Before, the Jews were given the privilege of having prophets born among them. But the last prophet, Muhammad saw, was not born among the Jews. Instead, Muhammad saw is an Arab.

Dr Zakir Naik reminded us that the most hideous and abominable act that we can do to ALLAH  is to say that ALLAH has a son. 
They say: "(Allah) hath begotten a son!" - Glory be to Him! He is self- sufficient! His are all things in the heavens and on earth! No warrant have ye for this! say ye about Allah what ye know not? (Yunus:68)
Therefore, Dr Zakir said, why is it we do not speak up when there are friends and families who assert that God has a son? Dr Zakir said we do not have to fight; we just need to open our mouth.
“Convey from me even an Ayah of the Quran.." (Sahih Bukhari)

Furthermore, Dr Zakir told us that in normal circumstances, we won't enter Jannah if we do not perform dakwah. Of course, ALLAH will pardon those whom HE wants. That is why Dr Zakir Naik emphasis 'in normal circumstances'. Here, Dr Zakir Naik further explains that it is wajib (mandatory) for a Muslim to do part time dakwah. The verse of the Quran that says:
"Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right, and forbidding what is wrong.." (Al Imran:104)
implies to full time dakwah. This full time dakwah only applies to Muslims such as Dr Zakir Naik himself.

Lastly, Dr Zakir Naik told us something that many of us do not realize. Dr Zakir said that we are given the opportunity by ALLAH to do a Prophet's job (to perform dakwah) and earn a Prophet's reward. This is because, even if we do not exist, even without us, Islam can still prevail for ALLAH is the ALL POWERFUL.

The remaining one hour was given to the audience. Below are the questions and answers that I manage to jot down:

If we practice Islam amongst a non Muslim community, is that also counted as performing dakwah?
Yes. But dakwah consists of amal(practice) and word. Therefore, we must also use words apart from practice.  In Surah al Ikhlas verse 1, ALLAH told us to say it:
"Say: He is Allah, the One and Only."

Assume that we have invited a person towards Islam. After he/she becomes a Muslim, he/she faces boycott from the family and probably face financial problems. As a student, how do we help?
Well, by inviting people to Islam, you have already done your job. Other people can now do the rest. But in reality, we need a specialized organization that can help solve this financial problems. But Dr Zakir said that if we do have rich friends then we can ask their help too.

What is your opinion of the daies (preachers) that are being called Islamist?
Dr Zakir said that we can counter this Islamist term by using logical reasoning. For example: "I object the London bombings. And I also object the killings in Afghanistan and Palestine". Dr Zakir said the heaviest trials and burdens are given only to the Rasul. So if we ever feel that we are carrying so many burdens then, it is actually our fault for defying ALLAH in the first place.

I had invited a non Muslim to Islam. Then the non Muslim asks me whether I am inviting him to become a sunni Muslim or a syiah Muslim. I said that I'm inviting you to become a sunni Muslim. He then replied, why won't you invite the syiah Muslims to become a sunni? (This question was not ask by me, by the way. I'm just quoting verbatim.)
Dr Zakir said that the one inviting to Islam had made a mistake by answering that he is inviting the person to become a sunni Muslim. Instead, he should have told him that there are no divisions in Islam.
"And hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves" (Al-Imran:103)

This is about it. May you gain benefit from this post :)