Who is really insulting Allah SWT, the Qur’an,
and the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and his legacy?
“Do you preach righteousness and fail to practice it yourselves, although you read the Scripture? Do you not understand?” [The Noble Qur’an 2:44]
There is no doubt that many people feel very passionate about calling out those who ridicule and defame the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ or the Commandments of Allah SWT. I am one of those people and this piece is more for me than anyone else, because we must be reminded of our duty and our sincerity to Allah and His Messenger ﷺ before anything else, Insha’Allah.
Whether it is France or any other country; whether it is cartoons, jokes, laws, news reports, or even opinion pieces, we stand in outrage when his name is uttered with disrespect. We call for blood, punishment, and boycotts, yet we fail to understand the real tragedy in all this. We fail to recognize who the true blasphemers are.
“And let those who oppose the Messenger’s (Muhammad ﷺ) commandment beware, lest some Fitnah befall them or a painful torment be inflicted on them.” [The Noble Qur’an 24:63]
When you love someone you want to do the things that please them and you avoid the things that they dislike. If it is someone of status then you want to make sure that you respect them and follow them. If they tell you to do something, you do it, and if they ask you not to do something, you will never do it. All because you love them and you do not want them to be disappointed in you or not love you back.
Our relationship with Allah as our Master and His Messenger ﷺ is beyond this. Allah chose the Qur’an as our Book and Muhammad ﷺ as our leader, our teacher, our guide, our example, our beloved. This relationship is divinely decreed. If we are Muslims then we must accept it, testify to it, submit to it, and act on it with all our heart. But, while we find that we are so easily offended on his behalf, we do not judge ourselves with the same standards. We are not people who reflect on our own condition and how we break our promise and our oath of devotion to the Qur’an and his example everyday. Then, I beg to ask, who is really insulting him or the Book? Those who know or those who do not know? Those who believe or those who do not believe? Those who vowed to respect and follow them and break that promise everyday or those who never made such a vow and are left to dwell in their ignorance and arrogance?
“Are those who know equal to those who do not know?” Only they will remember [who are] people of understanding. [The Noble Qur’an 39:9]
We want to protest against their insults and their not respecting our Prophet ﷺ or the Book of Allah and His Commandments, yet we don’t realize that they haven’t taken an oath to respect and follow them. We have. And, if we realized how much worse it is to call ourselves Muslims and then do the opposite of what Allah and His Messenger ﷺ commanded us to do, then we would not have a voice to protest. Not a whisper, because we would want to bow our heads in shame instead.
You may be confused, but this is something I have really pondered over. Is my rage over these acts justified or am I making a show of my devotion to Islam, because I am overcompensating for my own ignorance and lack of self control to the point where I may be out of the religion all together? It is good to be upset when someone insults our Deen, but it should cause us to reflect not just react. We are supposed to be people of understanding, like the Sahabah RA were when faced with similar situations, Insha’Allah. We learn that the enemies of Allah and His Messenger ﷺ will always exist and they will always push our buttons, it is what their heart calls them to, but I want to ask what our hearts are calling us to? And, if we are to stand for Islam and Our Prophet ﷺ, then we better be ready to answer that call in our own lives as well, because for this we will be questioned in the Hereafter!
So, let us dissect this to make it easier to understand and digest. Let us analyze just a little of what we have been commanded to do in Islam and what we actually see in the Ummah as a majority, Insha’Allah.
We commit Shirk (worshipping anything besides Allah or associating partners with Allah) and don’t bat an eye. We take what we found our ancestors doing and continue their legacies, instead of honouring the word of Allah and the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. All across the Muslim world, we worship graves, make monuments to the dead, and make pilgrammage and sujood to such places. This was explicitly forbidden by the Prophet ﷺ in many narrations, yet it falls on deaf ears for most Muslims, Subhan’Allah.
Muslim reported from Jundub Ibn ‛Abdullāh (RA) who said: I heard the Prophet ﷺ five days before his death saying: “Indeed those who came before you would take the graves of their Prophets as places of worship (as mosques). Do not take graves as places of worship, for indeed I forbid you from that.” (Muslim)
We take the word of man over Allah and His Messenger ﷺ. We wear amulets (taweez), decorate our homes with talismans (e.g. evil eye and hand of Fatimah or Hamsa) for protection, or go to soothsayers and magicians to help us with our problems and ask about the future, or calling on the Kuffar for aid and support when Muslims exist in countless numbers as we should be calling on Allah SWT alone. There are countless other acts that we do in our daily lives that we have no proof of and if someone does give us sincere advice from the Qur’an and Sunnah, we reject it citing such and such Shaykh and such and such Leader, Subhan’Allah. Why are we not protesting this atrocity? Such an atrocity that it causes the heavens and the earth to shake and near explode? Where is our pride and our love then?
“O men! Here is a parable set forth! listen to it! Those on whom, besides Allah, you call, cannot create (even) a fly, if they all met together for the purpose! and if the fly should snatch away anything from them, they would have no power to release it from the fly. Feeble are those who petition and those whom they petition!” [The Noble Qur’an 22:73]
We commit countless Bid’ah and rejoice in them. We don’t find proof for what we practice from the Qur’an and Sunnah of the Prophet of Allah ﷺ. We celebrate holidays that have no basis or evidence from even the Sahabah RA, such as celebrating the birth of the Prophet ﷺ, reading the Qur’an on behalf of the dead (Qur’an Khwani), non-Muslims holidays, death anniversaries, all sorts of milads, yet we insist on these activities as if they are obligatory. We don’t perform regular Salah, but will stand for fabricated voluntary acts, Subhan’Allah. Is this not an insult to the Prophet ﷺ and his legacy, when he said in his last sermon on Arafat during the Farewell Hajj:
Reason well, therefore, O people, and understand the words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the Qur’an and my example, the Sunnah and if you follow these you will never go astray. All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness, O Allah, that I have conveyed your message to your people”. (Bukhari)
And on the same day, Allah revealed:
“This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islām as religion.” [The Noble Qur’an 5:3]
So, can we deny this? Will we claim that the Prophet ﷺ did not tell us everything, that we know better than Allah and His Messenger? Astaghifirullah. Yet, we continue in our rebellion and bring new matters into the religion without evidence, Subhan’Allah. So, who are the ones who disrespect the Prophet ﷺ and Islam? Who will be held to account more than anyone else?
On the authority of the mother of the faithful, ‘Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her), who said: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “He who innovates something in this matter of ours [Islam] that is not of it will have it rejected [by Allah].” [Bukhari & Muslim] In one version by Muslim it reads: “He who does an act which we have not commanded, will have it rejected [by Allah].”
We deal in haram and doubtful matters even when we know that they are hated by Allah SWT and that we will be punished for them. We do them even though we know that the Prophet ﷺ did not do them and forbade them to his Companions RA and the Ummah.
One of the most prominent amongst these is that we deal in Ribaa (interest), taking and giving. We cannot find one Muslim country today that does not deal in usary and it is rare to find Muslims who are not involved in some way in a Ribaa based loan. The severity of this is described by Allah in the Qur’an in two places:
“Those who eat Ribaa will not stand (on the Day of Resurrection) except like the standing of a person beaten by Shaytaan (Satan) leading him to insanity.” [The Noble Qur’an 2: 275]
“O you who have believed, fear Allah and give up what remains [outstanding] of interest, if you should be believers. And if you do not, then be informed of a war against you from Allah and His Messenger.” [The Noble Qur’an 2:278-9]
A war, Brother and Sisters. A war with Allah and His Messenger ﷺ. Do we see the gravity of our actions? We stand up to defend Allah and His Messenger ﷺ against the Kuffar who speak ill against them, yet many of us are personally taking up arms against them, Subhan’Allah.
Are we true followers of the Prophet ﷺ considering what he said about Ribaa?
It was narrated that Jaabir (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) cursed the one who consumes ribaa, the one who pays it, the one who writes it down and the two who witness it. He said they are all the same.” (Muslim)
How about how we pay and take bribes in the majority in the Ummah in one form or another? Do we realize how detested this is by Allah and His Messenger? Which of our Scholars speak about these things and warn us? Which one of them is giving us passionate addresses on anything but Ramadan and Sha’ban? Subhan’Allah. And, what is better than the Book of Allah:
“And you see many of them hastening into sin and aggression and the devouring of [what is] unlawful [interest and bribes]. How wretched is what they have been doing. Why do the learned men and religious scholars not forbid them from saying what is sinful and devouring what is unlawful? How evil is what they have been practicing.” [The Noble Qur’an 5:62-63]
‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) cursed the one who gives a bribe and the one who takes it. (Ahmad and Abu Dawood)
How about the rampant consumption of Alcohol and Zina, of the body, eyes, tongue, and ears? How do we feel about how pornography has become a norm on the screens of the Ummah? What do we think about the heinous acts that are committed against little girls and boys as well as women in our countries, many times by the supposed learned men of the Ummah? Who has protested about this? Who is offended by this grave sin happening right before our eyes and we do nothing to stop it?
Do not even go close to fornication. It is indeed a shameful act, and an evil way to follow. [The Noble Qur’an 17:32]
Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) as saying. “Allah fixed the very portion of adultery which a man will indulge in. There would be no escape from it. The adultery of the eye is the lustful look and the adultery of the ears is listening to voluptuous (song or talk) and the adultery of the tongue is licentious speech and the adultery of the hand is the lustful grip (embrace) and the adultery of the feet is to walk (to the place) where he intends to commit adultery and the heart yearns and desires which he may or may not put into effect.” (Muslim)
Let us then speak about the treatment of minorities in our countries as well as the poor and needy. I don’t think I have even seen a protest or a call of blasphemy on a person who does not pay their Zakat in full, abuses their servants and turns the poor away, who lets the hungry sleep without food in their bellies at night, because they are too busy hoarding wealth, many times haram wealth, and filling their own round bellies? How embarrassing to call ourselves the Ummah of the Prophet ﷺ and feign offense when someone insults him, Subhan’Allah. Our offense is much greater.
“And those who hoard up gold and silver and do not spend in the Path of Allah then warn them of the painful torment.” [The Noble Qur’an 9:34]
Abu Huraira (RA) narrated: Allah’s Apostle Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Whoever is made wealthy by Allah and does not pay the Zakat of his wealth, then on the Day of Resurrection his wealth will be made like a bald-headed poisonous male snake with two black spots over the eyes. The snake will encircle his neck and bite his cheeks and say, ‘I am your wealth, I am your treasure.’” (Bukhari)
What do we say about our Akhlaq (Morality) and Adhab (Manners)?
The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “The best among you are the best in character (having good manners).” (Bukhari)
This was an important point to highlight, because this is what we usually praise about the West. Their manners. Our Deen gives us the complete guide of morality and manners, yet we lack the humility and patience in all aspects of life. We are quick to make assumptions, backbite, curse, and hurt one another. If we truly self-reflect, we would see that we do not follow the way of the Messenger ﷺ when it comes to how we interact with others. We can be arrogant and dismissive to the point where many of us are just keeping relations with each other for the sake of having company, even if it is bad company, Subhan’Allah. Have we actually analyzed the kind of conversations we have at our gathering places? How vulgar and disgusting our speech can get, how men degrade women and how women ridicule one another? Is this the way of our Messenger ﷺ? I think not.
Narrated ‘Aisha RA: The Prophet ﷺ did something and allowed his people to do it, but some people refrained from doing it. When the Prophet learned of that, he delivered a sermon, and after having sent Praises to Allah, he said, “What is wrong with such people as refrain from doing a thing that I do? By Allah, I know Allah better than they, and I am more afraid of Him than they.” (Bukhari)
This hadith tells us that the Prophet ﷺ knew Allah SWT better than any of us and that he feared Allah SWT. The most perfect of creation ﷺ feared Allah, then who are we to not be afraid of Him and follow the way of the Messenger ﷺ to please Him? If we truly care about the Prophet ﷺ and how he is being represented, then we should truly be looking at ourselves as his Ummah and see if we are fulfilling our roles and making sure that people see his example through our morality and manners, Insha’Allah. We do not want anyone making negative assumptions about our Deen or the Messenger ﷺ based on our actions.
However, it isn’t just our character that is not on par with the example of our Beloved Prophet Muhammad ﷺ when it comes to Adhab, it is also our outward appearance and cleanliness. Muslims should be known for their discipline, organization, and for our impeccable hygiene and clean environments, yet we are lacking in all these aspects personally and as a community. Wherever we dwell, litter and refuse are apparent on every street corner and alley. Our places of business and, sadly, even most of our Mosques would not meet even basic sanitary standards (the washrooms are a whole other conversation).
Abu Malik al-Ash’ari reported: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Cleanliness is half of faith…” (Muslim)
Our Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was very careful when it came to personal hygiene as well as the cleanliness of his mosque and the community at large. The discipline of our Beloved ﷺ and the Sahabah RA was such that they would constantly be cleaning their teeth, staying in Wudu, sweeping, cleaning, and laundering. They were not lazy when it came to these things, because these are beloved to Allah SWT and He loves to see us and our surroundings clean, so that we are ready for sacred conversations and worship, Alhamdulillah.
“Indeed, Allah loves those who are constantly repentant and loves those who purify themselves” [The Noble Qur’an 2:222]
Where is our passion and love for following in the footsteps of our Beloved ﷺ and honouring this extremely important Sunnah? We protest and leave the area in such horrid conditions that if the Prophet ﷺ was to see our state, he would be disappointed instead of being happy with us, Subhan’Allah. This is not his legacy or what he commanded.
And, if that isn’t enough, how about the fact that there is not one Muslim country that can claim that they have implemented the law of Allah SWT. We protest, tear apart our own infrastructure, leave a trail of destruction and garbage behind us for anyone insulting Allah and His Messenger ﷺ or not letting our women wear Hijab in their countries (although women in most of our households do not wear it), yet our countries are even worse. We have no vision and no passion except to act like we don’t like the West outwardly, yet attempt to replicate them in everything we do inwardly, Subhan’Allah. We promote their dress, their entertainment, their standards of beauty and freedom, praise their intellect and progression, yet we begin yawning when it comes to our own way of life granted to us by Allah SWT and His Messenger ﷺ. So who should we really be offended by? Them or us? Is this not a huge double standard?
We love to live in their countries and would love for their systems to be implemented in our’s. We have no real connection to Islam except the rituals of Salah, Fasting and Hajj and our wayward celebrations, but that is where it ends. We do not love Allah’s Book, His Laws, the way of His Messenger ﷺ as we should, otherwise our state and our focus would be on greater matters. We would make our countries livable for the Muslims across the world so that they do not have to go begging the non-Muslims for anything. They would not have to become slaves to their systems and their laws. Yet, we don’t want to put in the real work and then wonder why everyone is not running to take our side. We have nothing to stand on and when we behave like we do without knowledge or intellect the result is that it takes people further away from the Deen of Allah, instead of bringing them closer.
And Allah SWT says:
“Allah has promised those of you who believe and do good that He will certainly make them successors in the land, as He did with those before them; and will surely establish for them their faith which He has chosen for them; and will indeed change their fear into security—˹provided that˺ they worship Me, associating nothing with Me. But whoever disbelieves after this ˹promise˺, it is they who will be the rebellious.” [The Noble Qur’an 24:55]
Not only that, where is our outrage over the atrocities that these same countries are waging across the Muslim world, on the Ummah of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ? Where are our boycotts and our protests? Where are our calls on our governments and armies to step in and protect those who are being thrown into furnaces in Iraq, those who are being imprisoned in China, those who are being oppressed in Afghanistan, those who are being murdered and displaced in Syria, those who are being shot and locked away in Kashmir, those who are starving in Yemen, those who are being stripped of their rights to practice the Deen in Egypt, those who are still suffering in Palestine? And, the list goes on and on, Suban’Allah. I am feeling so overwhelmed writing this, because I feel like our priorities are so off kilter that we have completely lost the way of the Prophet ﷺ and the Companions RA. This is how we are honouring them? Did they not swear to bring the Law of Allah on the earth and stand up for the oppressed? Did they not sacrifice their lives and wealth to make sure to preserve this Deen and the legacy of our Beloved ﷺ? Yet, we find that we are the most ungrateful people, who only stand for what does not inconvenience us. I speak for myself as well. We are who the Prophet ﷺ described:
Thauban reported that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: “It is near that the nations will call one another against you just as the eaters call one another to their dishes.” Somebody asked: “Is this because we will be few in numbers that day?” He said: “Nay, but that day you shall be numerous, but you will be like the foam of the sea, and Allah will take the fear of you away from your enemies and will place weakness into your hearts.” Somebody asked: “What is this weakness?” He said: “The love of the world and the dislike of death.” (Abu Daud)
These are the things that we must truly reflect upon, Insha’Allah. This has been brewing for a long time and this battle will not end anytime soon, but we must be diligent and gain confidence in our Deen and the way of our Messenger ﷺ.
“O believers! Whoever among you abandons their faith, Allah will replace them with others who love Him and are loved by Him. They will be humble with the believers but firm towards the disbelievers, struggling in the Way of Allah; fearing no blame from anyone. This is the favour of Allah. He grants it to whoever He wills. And Allah is All-Bountiful, All-Knowing.” [The Noble Qur’an 5:54]
“We were the most humiliated people on earth and Allah gave us honour through Islam. If we ever seek honour through anything else, Allah will humiliate us again.” (Umar ibn Al-Khattab RA)
We are far from where we should be and behaving irrationally. Right now, we are all divided and walking different paths. This what Shaytan wants and it gives the enemies of Islam too many opportunities to wage war against us. A war that we will never win without the right weapons. It is beautiful to love Allah and the Prophet of Allah ﷺ, but that love should not be mere lip service. It has to mean something and there necessarily has to be action behind that love. If we all truly turn back to the Qur’an and Sahih Sunnah, seek Allah’s pleasure in all we do, abandon the Haram and doubtful matters, then we will be a force to be reckoned with all together as one. Then no one could defeat us or humiliate us, because just like in the Battle of Badr, Allah SWT and the Heavens would be on our side and the enemies of Islam would fall one after another.
“O you who have believed, if you support Allah, He will support you and plant firmly your feet. But those who disbelieve – for them is misery, and He will waste their deeds. That is because they detested what Allah has revealed, so He rendered worthless their deeds.” [The Noble Qur’an 47:7-9]