Monkey in the Middle


Lights, Camera, Action. What kind of dawah methodology are you packin?  Think again. We know Islam is a religion of moderation, unfortunately some people try to make it hard like constipation. It seems like staying middle on the straight path is getting more difficult with a bunch of loose Muslims.

Let’s look at the definition of methodology and dawah.


1.a set or system of methods, principles, and rules for regulating a given discipline, as in the arts or sciences.


2. to invite.

Not to scare away.

One time I went to a masjid in Brooklyn and I came across a brother who ran the masjid and immediately he spotted my friend with a nike golf cap and told him to take it off. When we asked him why, he said because shatan sits on the rim of the cap (haha). Then he went and got us some free kufi’s to put on our head. Come on, are you serious? well he was, but I was stunned. Well I haven’t gone back since.

Talk about being strict to the next level. Forget that, it was the most uneducated thing I ever heard. Wearing kufi’s is no doubt better, but how you going to tell someone shatan is sitting on their hat. How did he see shatan sitting? I didn’t see him. (joke)

This is a perfect example of Muslims Drowning in minor details…..Sometimes we get this approach from people about Islam that it chases us away from it. We all know Islam teaches us to man up, be intelligent and recognize the bigger problems and then rectify them. We got to look at the big picture, people got their approach out of order like a Picasso painting. We have to question how to present Islam to the Non Muslims on a collective and individual level.

We can talk about a whole bunch of issues, some of them in our own homes, others in the masjid and within our inner circle of peers A.K.A our brothers and sisters.

At the end of the day, you gotta be strict and gentle when the situations requires you to do so.

Let’s keep it real, all those differences have to be put aside, we got much more that binds us than that which splits us apart. Like a rapper once said in the Nike commercial say ” A family that prays together stays together and one that walks apart just falls apart”.

Last week I was able to talk to a customer who came to my store. He was wearing a fitted, akademiks apparel, white nike uptowns, had some tattoos and was wearing jewelry. At first I was just helping him, then he asked me to tell him about all the hottest gear that’s out. So I started naming some brands and he was completely lost. He said he’s fresh out out of jail so he hasn’t been updated on all the newest fashion.

Jail? The first thing that came to my mind was what did he do that got him there. So I asked him and he said ” I did 4 and a half years, and just came out two weeks ago. He got caught with two guns on his waist. To be specific it was two rugers. He was a drug dealer and someone basically snitched on him.

Anyways we started talking about life and how prison transforms people. I told him it’s a blessing for you to be out, it could have always been worse and you should thank god for giving you another chance. He kept it real and followed me through the conversation. When I told him, look at it as a test, he agreed with me 100 percent. I told him a lot of people who go to jail, they are actually happy they got imprisoned. The reason for that is its sort of like discipline, because they are punished they in return learn their lesson. Then I asked him about jail, the environment in particular.

He got into a couple of fights, he said its real tough. Sort of like the concrete jungle. Then I asked him if he had seen any Muslims in jail, he said of course. I asked him how was their character and he responded ” they were always the first to get food, they always stuck together and most importantly often read their Holy Qurans to keep themselves rest assured”. He said they didn’t get into fights and kept calm and didn’t bother anyone.

Now let’s zoom out of this real quick, in a prison, your mental and physical state can react often in the worst ways because of the psychological stress. Now here we have this non muslim former prisoner who was impressed by the presentation of Muslims.

All they did was keep to their principles, and they were able to leave him with a positive mark. In the toughest of environments, controlling your desires and restraining from anger is a huge test. Mashallah these muslims did that, as a result this guy was able to see Islam as it is. They didn’t talk to him, nor did they start beef with him. It was all about ethics, morals and manners. Nowadays, we have people who don’t smile, they grill you mad hard. So when we were finishing our conversation, he said he would read about Islam and he appreciates life much more now.

Don’t make Islam hard, just think of yourself as a mirror to Islam, the better you present yourself the clearer the window be Inshallah. In this society, grounding yourself as a Muslim  with solid principles as well as advancing in whatever professionalism you wish to achieve can be challenging. Just drill it into your hearts that Islam is applicable to all times and all environments from jail to the work place, the better you embody it, the better the perception of those who see it.

So you got the message? DON’T BE A MONKEY IN THE MIDDLE. Calm down, don’t get ahead of yourself. Like Shaykh Hamza Yusuf said ” Islam is not right, nor is it left, it is straight as an arrow”.

So that’s what I wanted to discuss, I will talk about the ICNA convention recap soon inshallah. Just came back today, I apologize for everyone who’s waiting for my article. I’m moving slow like a turtle, but you know what they say “Progress is a slow process”. So stay tooned folks…waslaaam.

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7 Responses to Monkey in the Middle

  1. Aanika July 7, 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    I just wanna pick up on one of the points you made..About some muslims who get hung up on the minor details.Us the muslims have to realise that Adab is key. Man I seen sisters who are newly practicing and come to learn some ilm..but when they meet the other sisters at the gathering they are attacked on their attire..or about the fact that they're wearing makeup/perfume..everyones at their own level and by pointing out those short comings in front of all the others causes embarassment…n sadly we never saw those sisters again. We have to look at the way the prophet (saw) corrected people…it was not too rash nor extreme..May allah sbw keep us on the middle path and enable us to stick the Qur'an and Sunnah inshaAllah.

  2. Naela July 14, 2008 at 6:38 am #

    I just wanted to reply to Aanika get what she is saying and i want to say no more to it. People have certain starting points some are beginners and some are already down the road (alhumdulilah) we all need to realize not to critisize people becuase we need to unite not "scare" people away….

  3. Anonymous August 3, 2008 at 8:06 am #


  4. N August 18, 2008 at 1:26 pm #

    mashAllah brother that was a great post and i agree with you.

    I think that the best dawah is that from one's example through behavior and not that of correcting one another.

  5. Majida June 29, 2012 at 2:26 pm #

    Don’t lie to them and sugar coat the truth just to “bring them in”. Islam is no cult lol…But tell them truth kindly, and make sure the important stuff comes out first (heart before actions, and actions before appearance).

    • Nicke February 14, 2014 at 6:13 pm #

      to Last and Final prophet to give dawa oeplny and Prophet (pbuh) start to possession to Holy kaba with all companion then most of the people of Mecca start to through stone towards them and shouting against Allah and rasul (pbuh) Oh all Muslim Brother and sister please keep patience and follow the right path that does not how hard it is and you will be rewarded. don’t act as they act with us don’t shout as they shout .we just have to follow the path of Allah which is presented by Muhammad (pbuh).there are lots of example we have how we act with misguided people and Time will come then they will be your friend.


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