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Golden advice from the Salaf

Da’wah Blogs

When we engage in da’wah or give advice, we get passionate & we don’t exercise caution or wisdom. Advising someone is a delicate manner, so let us hear what one of the past masters of our Ummah has to say about engaging in advice/ da’wah.

Ibn ‘Abbās – Allāh be pleased with him – said, “Address the people once a week, and if you must do so more often, then twice; and if you have to do even more, then three times; and do not make people tired or bored with the Quran. Let me not find you coming to the people to exhort them and tell them stories while they are speaking amongst themselves, thus interrupting their conversation and tiring them. Instead, listen, and when they tell you, address them when they desire to listen to your speech. And beware of making your supplications rhyme, stay away from this, for I found Allāh’s Messenger – peace and praise of Allāh be upon him – and his Companions doing nothing but [staying away from this].”

In this narration, the illustrious Companion ʿAbdullāh b. ‘Abbās gives some guidelines about being wise and aware of people’s condition when teaching them and calling them to Allāh. He advised that a person should not address the people and give talks to them too often, lest they become bored or fed up of hearing the Quran. This consideration is taken from the Sunnah of the Prophet – Allāh’s praise and peace be upon him – as related by Ibn Mas’ūd.

This tradition also expresses the dislike of trying to disseminate knowledge in a way that might be detrimental to its purpose. We are discouraged from spreading knowledge to those who do not desire it or those who are not enthusiastic to receive it and interrupting people while they are speaking. We are encouraged to teach knowledge to those who express their desire for it, because all this means it is more likely that the recipient will benefit from this knowledge.

The narration also warns against the practice of trying to make du’ā (supplication) rhyme. This is because occupying oneself with putting together rhyming prayers conflicts with the state of being humble and imploring Allāh, which is how a person should be when supplicating. There is no contradiction between this disliked behavior and the fact that some of the Prophetic supplications and statements rhyme, because the Prophet never used to have to try and make them rhyme, but was effortlessly eloquent and at the same time fully humbled in front of Allāh.

Adapted from Ibn Ḥajr, Fatḥ Al-Bārī.

Al-Bukhārī, Al-Ṣaḥīḥ ‘What is hated about making supplications rhyme.’

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  1. Subhan Allaah such a wise advice. It is amazing how our salafs have left advice in almost every apect of our life, it is just that we don’t read books and read such advices.

  2. The advise in terms of schedules is very amazing, it works! 💯 And when their advise says “…do not make people tired or bored with the Quran…” I don’t know if it is just me or others too but I see some wise strategies and learning in these quotes. And this is what brings us back to the point that why learn dawah? Why take training? Why make strategies? Why have a game plan?🤔

  3. JAZAKALLAH it was very informative. we should really be careful regarding the timing and way of giving knowledge of islam.

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