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Allah Ta῾ala states that one reason for this Ummah being titled as the best of Ummahs, is the practice of ‘commanding good and preventing evil’.

Nabi sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam states, “Whosoever from among you witnesses evil, he should change it with his hands. And if he is unable to do so then he should change it with his tongue. And if he is unable to do so with his tongue, then he should at least consider it to be wrong. And this is the weakest stage of Imaan.” (Mishkāt 2/1421, maktab al islāmī)[1]

Hadhrat Nu῾maān bin Bashīr radhi allahu ῾anhu says that Rasulullah sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam gave an example of people sailing on a boat having an upper deck and a lower deck. The people from the lower deck require water and request water from the people of the upper deck. The people from the upper deck refuse water so the people from the lower deck decide to make a hole on the floor of the ship and get water from the sea. Rasulullah sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam said, “If the people from the upper deck don’t stop the people at the bottom from making a hole, the ship will sink and all the people travelling will drown.” (ibid)[2]

Similarly, if people do not prohibit evil and sin in the society, the entire society – innocent and evil – will equally suffer.

Hadhrat Abu Hurairah radhi allahu ῾anhu states that Rasulullah sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam said, “Command good and prohibit evil or else Allah will send such a punishment that will destroy everyone.” (Ibid)[3]

The above quotations of the Quran and Ahādith of Rasulullah sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam are clear that commanding good and prohibiting evil is an emphasised injunction of Allah and His Rasūl. Every person must carry out this injunction. All the Prophets ῾alayhimus salam followed the footsteps of their respective Prophets and after the demise of their Prophet, they carried out the same mission. The Sahāba of Rasulullah radhi allahu ῾anhum spent their entire lives in commanding good and prohibiting evil. Since there is no Prophet to come, every Ummati of Rasulullah sallallaahu ῾alayhi wasallam is the deputy of the Prophet and has to carry on the mission of the Prophet. The people of Tabligh Jamaat sacrifice their time, wealth and comforts to undergo difficulty and hardships to go in the path of Allah – to carry out this Sunnah of the Prophets – commanding good and prohibiting evil.

As far as the Tabligh Jamaat is concerned, it is our humble view that they are acting upon this injunction of Allah Taala and are fulfilling this obligation of Sharī῾ah. the Jamaat advocates strict adherence to the Sunnah and confines itself within the ambit of the Sharī῾ah. The purpose of any individual taking part in the noble work of Tabligh is firstly to reform oneself and dutifully save mankind from the fire of hell. The overwhelming success of the Jamaat is mainly because of the manifestation of the six points which involves the purification of the Naffs and the entity of Tawheed.

The word ‘Tashkeel’ literally means ‘to form’. In the terminology of Tabligh, it means to urge the people to give time, to come out in the path of Allah for self reformation and propagating good for a number of days 3, 7, 40, 4 months, 1 year, etc. The number of days is also not compulsory, it is only recommended just as it is recommended that a person studying first aid, for example, serves one month as practicals. While he will not be an expert in medicine, he will know the basic things to do during an emergency. Similarly, a person going out for 3 days, 40 days, 4 months, etc. does not become an expert on Shariáh, but he will learn the basic requirements of Shariáh. The more time he gives, the more he will learn and perfect himself. The time frame is not a criteria according to Shariáh.

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

[1]  5137 – عَن أبي سعيدٍ الخدريِّ عَنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ: «مَنْ رَأَى مِنْكُمْ مُنْكَرًا فَلْيُغَيِّرْهُ بِيَدِهِ فَإِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ فَبِلِسَانِهِ فَإِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ فبقلبه وَذَلِكَ أَضْعَف الْإِيمَان» . رَوَاهُ مُسلم [مشكاة المصابيح 3/ 1421]

[2]  5138 – وَعَنِ النُّعْمَانِ بْنِ بَشِيرٍ قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسلم: ” مثلُ المدهنِ فِي حُدُودِ اللَّهِ وَالْوَاقِعِ فِيهَا مَثَلُ قَوْمٍ استهمواسفينة فَصَارَ بَعْضُهُمْ فِي أَسْفَلِهَا وَصَارَ بَعْضُهُمْ فِي أَعْلَاهَا فَكَانَ الَّذِي فِي أَسْفَلِهَا يَمُرُّ بِالْمَاءِ عَلَى الَّذِينَ فِي أَعْلَاهَا فَتَأَذَّوْا بِهِ فَأَخَذَ فَأْسًا فَجَعَلَ يَنْقُرُ أَسْفَلَ السَّفِينَةِ فَأَتَوْهُ فَقَالُوا: مَالك؟ قَالَ: تَأَذَّيْتُمْ بِي وَلَا بُدَّ لِي مِنَ الْمَاءِ. فَإِنْ أَخَذُوا عَلَى يَدَيْهِ أَنْجَوْهُ وَنَجَّوْا أَنْفُسَهُمْ وَإِنْ تَرَكُوهُ أَهْلَكُوهُ وَأَهْلَكُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ “. رَوَاهُ البُخَارِيّ [مشكاة المصابيح 3/ 1421]

[3]  المرجع السابق