HELP ROHINGYA: FORGOTTEN, PERSECUTED MUSLIMS 2 of 2

HELP ROHINGYA: FORGOTTEN, PERSECUTED MUSLIMS 2 of 2

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With regard to permissibility of praying at home at times of tribulation, when Muslims cannot walk safely through the streets or reach the mosque safe and sound to attend prayers in jamaa’ah. But we must examine the situation more carefully before deciding not to attend Jumu’ah prayer because of its extreme importance. So we should not stop praying in jamaa’ah or stop attending Jumu’ah prayers on the grounds of mere speculation or an unlikely possibility of aggression. Rather if a person is certain or believes it to be most likely that he will be attacked if he goes to the mosque, then it is permissible for him not to go.

Among the opinions of the scholars concerning the permissibility of refraining from going to Jumu’ah prayers or prayers in jamaa’ah because of fear is the comment of Ibn Qudaamah (may Allaah have mercy on him) who said: “The one who is sick and the one who is afraid is excused from attending them – i.e., Jumu’ah and prayers in jamaa’ah – according to the view of most of the scholars. Ibn ‘Abbaas narrated that the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhiwasallam) said: ‘Whoever hears the call to prayer and is not prevented from responding by an excuse –’ They said, ‘What is the excuse, O Messenger of Allaah?’ He said, ‘Fear or sickness, (otherwise) the prayer that he offers will not be accepted.’” (narrated by Abu Dawood, 1/130. Shaykh al-Albaani classed this version of the hadeeth as da’eef (weak), but he classed as saheeh (sound) the version narrated by Ibn Maajah, 793, which says: “Whoever hears the call and does not come, his prayer is not valid, except for one who has an excuse.”Al-Irwaa’ 2/337). And Bilaal used to give the call to prayer; one day the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) came when he was sick, and said, ‘Tell Abu Bakr to lead the people in prayer.’” (al-Bukhaari, 633; Muslim, 418)

Fear is of three kinds: fear for oneself, fear for one’s wealth, and fear for one’s family. The first kind means fearing capture by an oppressive ruler, or an enemy, or a thief, or attack by wild animals, or a flood, etc., which may cause harm to oneself.

The second kind means fear for one’s wealth if one leaves home, as we have mentioned, such as oppressive rulers, thieves and the like, or fear that one’s house may be broken into or burned down or something like that; in such cases one is excused from attending Jumu’ah and prayers in jamaa’ah.

The third kind means fear for one’s child and family. In all such cases one is excused from attending Jumu’ah and prayers in jamaa’ah. This was the view of ‘Ataa’, al-Hasan, al-Oozaa’i and al-Shaafa’i, and we know of no difference of opinion concerning this matter.” (summarized from al-Mughni, 2/376).

In Fataawa al-Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz, when a man asked him about refraining from attending prayers in jamaa’ah because he was afraid for his wife, he said, “If there is some danger to your wife (at home) and she is not safe, and she is surrounded by things which give rise to fear, then he is excused for praying at home because of his fear for his wife…” Then he said: “But if your wife is not safe and the place is not safe, and danger is present, then it is o.k. for you to pray at home; this is a legitimate excuse…”

Majmoo’ Fataawa Samaahat al-Shaykh Ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him), 12/42

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With regard to Muslim women, they should stay in their homes and not go out – as much as they can – lest they be exposed to harm. Their relatives and neighbours should help them to meet their needs so that they will not be forced to go out. This is a means of earning great reward by helping those who are in desperate need.

With regard to Muslim men giving up distinctive Islamic dress and wearing the clothes commonly found in the kaafir society in which he lives, that is o.k., especially at times of persecution and harassment. Imaam Ibn Taymiyah said:

“The Muslim in a kaafir country that is at war with the Muslims or otherwise is not commanded to differ from them in outward appearance, because of the harm that may result from that. Rather it is recommended or obligatory for men to resemble them sometimes in his outward appearance, if that serves a religious purpose such as calling them to Islam, or finding out about their true state of affairs in order to inform the Muslims of that, or warding off their harm from the Muslims, and other righteous goals.” (Iqtidaa’ al-Siraat al-Mustaqeem, p. 176).

The words of Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah must be understood correctly. He is speaking of special circumstances or cases of necessity; he does not mean at all that Muslims should become assimilated with the kaafirs and do evil things or drink alcohol with them or that Muslim children should go to churches and lose their Islamic identity. Rather what is meant is that it is permissible to forego distinctive Islamic dress – for example – and wear clothing of the type prevalent in the kaafir country, and to speak the language of the kaafirs, etc., in order to ward off the harm of the kaafirs, especially in an atmosphere that is charged with hostility.

Perhaps these events will give the Muslims who are living in kaafir lands unnecessarily and for no shar’i purpose the opportunity to review their situation and consider going back to the Muslim world and making hijrah from the land of the kaafirs.

“O you who have believed, shall I guide you to a transaction that will save you from a painful punishment? [It is that] you believe in Allah and His Messenger and strive in the cause of Allah with your wealth and your lives. That is best for you, if you should know. He will forgive for you your sins and admit you to gardens beneath which rivers flow and pleasant dwellings in gardens of perpetual residence. That is the great attainment. And [you will obtain] another [favor] that you love – victory from Allah and an imminent conquest; and give good tidings to the believers”. (Q61:10-13)

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HELP ROHINGYA: FORGOTTEN, PERSECUTED MUSLIMS 1 of 2

HELP ROHINGYA: FORGOTTEN, PERSECUTED MUSLIMS 1 of 2

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They have often been called the most persecuted, oppressed minority in the world. The 1.1 million Rohingya Muslims squeezed into the north-west state of Rakhine, in mainly Buddhist Burma, bordering majority Muslim Bangladesh, are stateless and unwanted. Neither country will give them citizenship even though their families’ roots in modern-day Rakhine, once called Arakan, can be traced back to the Eighth Century. Since World War Two they have been treated increasingly by Burmese authorities as illegal, interloping Bengalis, facing apartheid-like conditions that deny them free movement or state education while government forces intermittently drive out and slaughter them. Over the past years, military operations against Rohingya villages have been so intense and cruel that the minority’s defenders have warned of an unfolding genocide. The United Nations has reported these state sponsored military committing religious, ethnic cleansing & genocide. The inhumane treatment of the Rohingyas has tarnished the image of Myanmar’s civilian leader and Nobel peace prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, once a famously unflinching defender of human rights, justice, fairness, freedom & darling of the West. She now faces international fury, particularly from Muslim nations, for failing to stand up to armed forces chief General Min Aung Hlaing, whose soldiers are accused of rape, murder, arson, and of ripping Rohingya babies from their mothers’ arms and throwing them into rivers and fire.

Allaah  says: “and you shall certainly hear much that will grieve you from those who received the Scripture before you (Jews & Christians) and from those who ascribe partners to Allaah; but if you persevere patiently, and become Al-Muttaqoon (the pious) then verily, that will be a determining factor in all affairs”[3:186]. Our attitude must be clear; we must explain to the kuffaar the ruling of Islamic sharee’ah concerning harming and killing others. We should tell them that Islam forbids harming innocent people in any way, whether that involves harming their bodies, their wealth or their honour. The Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhiwasallam) said: “There should be neither harming nor reciprocating harm.” It is not permissible to kill a kaafir who is not hostile or who has a legitimate peace treaty with the Muslims; rather treating a non-hostile kaafir with kindness is part of the Islamic religion, especially if that is done to call him to Islam and soften his heart (towards Islam). Allaah says:

“Allaah does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion nor drove you out of your homes. Verily, Allaah loves those who deal with equity” [60:8]

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At times of war against the kuffaar, it is not permissible for a Muslim to deliberately kill a kaafir child or woman who is not bearing arms against the Muslims or helping in the fight. It was narrated that the Prophet (sallAllaahu ‘alayhiwasallam) said to the Muslim army: “Go out in the name of Allaah and by the help of Allaah, following the way of the Messenger of Allaah. Do not kill any old man, infant, child or woman… spread goodness and do good, for Allaah loves those who do good.” (Abu Dawood)

This is supported by the advice which Abu Bakr al-Siddeeq (may Allaah be pleased with him) gave to the commander of his army: “I advise you of ten things: do not kill a woman, or a child, or any old person, or cut down any fruit trees…” (al-Muwatta’, 982, Kitaab al-Jihaad).

The kaafirs whom the Muslims fight and inflict harm and loss upon are the kaafirs who fight the Muslims and drive them out of their homes, or help to drive them out of their homes and punish and mistreat them, and who stand in the way of calling people to Islam and prevent people from following the path of Allaah, and prevent the spread of Islam. Allaah says:

“It is only as regards those who fought against you on account of religion, and have driven you out of your homes, and helped to drive you out, that Allaah forbids you to befriend them. And whosoever will befriend them, then such are the Zaalimoon (wrongdoers those who disobey Allaah).”[60:9]

Such people are to be fought against when [the Muslims] have the power to do so, and when fighting them and declaring jihad against them is more likely to serve a purpose. But when you can achieve your purpose with gentleness and kindness, it is not right to resort to violence and force. Muslims should only use force when they are compelled to, and as a last resort. They should not initiate fighting, unless there is some cause on the part of the kaafirs, such as their fighting the Muslims, or helping other enemies of the Muslims, or preventing them from following the path of Allaah and establishing the law of Allaah in the land.

We should also remind these kaafirs of the massacres which have been carried out and are still being carried out against Muslims in all parts of the world, in Bosnia, Kosova, Chechnya, Palestine and Kashmir, which are being supported by Jews, Christians and others. Is the blood of the Muslims cheaper than the blood of others? Should there be mourners for non-Muslims who are killed and not for Muslims who are killed?

Moreover, when the Orthodox Christians carried out massacres in Bosnia and Kosova, in which the numbers of those killed exceeded 200,000, apart from those who were wounded or raped, and the economic losses that resulted, did the Muslims in the Arab and Islamic countries launch attacks against the Orthodox Christians who live in their countries, or kill any of them, or open fire against their churches and subject them to terror?! What does this tell you?

It is very important for Muslims to explain these things to non-Muslims, in order to establish proof against the kuffaar. This is something that Allaah wants. Secondly, among the kuffaar there are intelligent and fair-minded people, and people who are receptive to the guidance of Islam; perhaps they will be affected by a clear explanation. Thirdly, no Muslim should permit himself to be accused without explaining his innocence. The distorted image of Muslims is one of the things that is keeping the kaafirs away from the truth and being affected by the Muslims; indeed it may make them treat the Muslims like outcasts, resulting in additional wrongdoing towards the Muslims.  “O you who have believed, shall I guide you to a transaction that will save you from a painful punishment? [It is that] you believe in Allah and His Messenger and strive in the cause of Allah with your wealth and your lives. That is best for you, if you should know. He will forgive for you your sins and admit you to gardens beneath which rivers flow and pleasant dwellings in gardens of perpetual residence. That is the great attainment. And [you will obtain] another [favor] that you love – victory from Allah and an imminent conquest; and give good tidings to the believers”. (Q61:10-13)

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