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Al-Haafiz Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said: "Anyone who needs to debate and engage in argument should be well-behaved, gentle, subtle and with good speech." [13] Therefore, the call to Allah Almighty with wisdom ,good advice and debate in the gentle manner,  is one of the best methods of calling to Allah, especially with the Arab Christians because they are the people of the book, and they have knowledge and experience, even though distorted, contrary to the people of other religions who are ignorant and idol worshipers. Their Arabic language makes it easier for them to be invited, because the Quran came down in the Arabic language and in it are all the arguments and proofs that correct their thoughts and beliefs and remove their misconceptions, doubts and give answers to their questions.

The Da’ee (the caller to Islam);before he begins his call and directs it to non-Muslims, he has to ask about the condition of the invitee . Is he among the common folk who is looking for the right or is he a scholar or one of the  priests whose invitation requires  a scholar who is familiar with the Qur’an, the Sunna and other religions, and the aspects of deviation, disagreement and agreement so that he  debates with this invitee and established the proof against him. [14] .

Fourth: recognizing the status of people of honor.

Knowing the conditions of the invited people by the caller necessitates that he recognize their status. This is an important matter that the da'I (caller)  must take into consideration and be keen to implement with the invitees. He must treat them based on their position and address them to the extent of their minds and understandings to ensure the unification of their hearts and drawing of  their souls to Islam. When we consider the Prophet's invitation, we find that he took into consideration the circumstances of the invited people and treat them according to their status. [15] . It was narrated that 'Abd-Allaah ibn Abbas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) wrote to Caesar: " From Muhammad ibn Abd Allah (servant of Allah)  and his Messenger to Hercules; the great (King) of the Romans. " [16] , and in his letter to Muqawqis: “ from Muhammad ibn Abd’Allah (servant of Allah) and his Messenger to the Muqawis of the great (King of the ) Copts " [17] . This confirms the keenness of the Prophet - peace be upon him - to treat  people according to their social standings in order to encourage them and to tame them (their hearts)  to the Islamic religion.

Similarly, the preacher should be keen to treat the non-Muslims according to their status to tame their hearts to hear the call and influence them, without taking away the status of the invitee or diminish its importance. This appreciation and respect of the status of the invitee, makes him to think about this religion, (a religion) which gives the human being his value exalts his status.

Among what needs to be given attention when inviting non-Muslims – the necessity of not attacking anything of their religion, so that the caller does not lose  contact them and the chance of calling again in other forms  and methods, and also in order for them not to insult Allah out of hostility and ignorance,: "

 وَلَا تَسُبُّوا۟ ٱلَّذِينَ يَدْعُونَ مِن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ فَيَسُبُّوا۟ ٱللَّهَ عَدْوًۢا بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۗ كَذَٰلِكَ زَيَّنَّا لِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ عَمَلَهُمْ ثُمَّ إِلَىٰ رَبِّهِم مَّرْجِعُهُمْ فَيُنَبِّئُهُم بِمَا كَانُوا۟ يَعْمَلُونَ

 Do not insult those they call upon besides God, lest they insult God out of hostility and ignorance. We made attractive to every community their deeds. Then to their Lord is their return, and He will inform them of what they used to do.” (An-Aam:108)

The wise propagandist presents the Islamic call in a manner of persuasion and shows the virtues of Islam without mocking in the religion of the invitee, thus opening the channel of reflection on the truth and comparing it to what it is. With this, he has built a strong building in the heart of the invitee for reading and carrying out a close research of this new religion presented by the preacher.

Fifth: the Method of Gentleness and softness.

Gentleness: is the opposite of violence and harshness, and it means easy and simple to reach. [18]. Allah praised the noble Prophet - peace be upon him –with what he was characterized of softness and kindness, Allah said:

فَبِمَا رَحْمَةٍ مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ لِنتَ لَهُمْ ۖ وَلَوْ كُنتَ فَظًّا غَلِيظَ ٱلْقَلْبِ لَٱنفَضُّوا۟ مِنْ حَوْلِكَ ۖ فَٱعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَٱسْتَغْفِرْ لَهُمْ وَشَاوِرْهُمْ فِى ٱلْأَمْرِ ۖ فَإِذَا عَزَمْتَ فَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ يُحِبُّ ٱلْمُتَوَكِّلِينَ

“It is by grace from God that you were gentle with them. Had you been harsh, hardhearted, they would have dispersed from around you. So pardon them, and ask forgiveness for them, and consult them in the conduct of affairs. And when you make a decision, put your trust in God; God loves the trusting.(Aali-Imraan:158).

The Prophet used this approach of calling to Islam and encouraged towards it even with non-Muslims. On the authority of Aesha (may Allah be please with her) that: “The Jews came to the Prophet and greeted him by saying, "As-Samu 'Alaika (i.e., death be upon you), so I understood what they said, and I said to them, "As-Samu 'alaikum wal-la'na (i.e. Death and Allah's Curse be upon you)." The Prophet said, "Be gentle and calm, O 'Aisha, as Allah likes gentleness in all affairs." I said, "O Allah's Prophet! Didn't you hear what they said?" He said, "Didn't you hear me answering them back by saying, 'Alaikum (i.e., the same be upon you)?" and mine will be answered (by Allah) and theirs would not be answered (by Allah)

"in another report , " do not be obscene, for  Allah does not like obscenity and obscene actions " [20] . The Prophet - peace be upon him – also used the  method of kindness with those ignorant of the rule and this is seen through his stand  with the Bedouin who urinated  in the mosque, and when some of the companions severely censured him, he  - peace be upon him said: " do not hasten him” meaning do not cut off urine from him and he asked them to leave him alone. When he finished urinating, he (peace be upon him) came to him and said: “These mosques are not suitable for anything of this urine nor dirt, but they are for the remembrance of God Almighty and prayer and reading the Qur’an. " [21]. The caller to Allah  has to take into account the kindness and gentleness in his call for non – Muslims in order  to affect their hearts. This kindness does not mean the issue (loyalty and disownment) should be omitted.  If we meditate The Book of Allah , we find the message of Allah Almighty to Prophet Musah (Moses) and his brother Haarun (Aaron ), peace be upon them in the verse:

ٱذْهَبَآ إِلَىٰ فِرْعَوْنَ إِنَّهُۥ طَغَىٰ

فَقُولَا لَهُۥ قَوْلًا لَّيِّنًا لَّعَلَّهُۥ يَتَذَكَّرُ أَوْ يَخْشَىٰ

“Go to Pharaoh. He has tyrannized. But speak to him nicely. Perhaps he will remember, or have some fear."(Taha:43-44), i.e.: go to Pharaoh the tyrant, who exceeded the limit in his infidelity and tyranny and injustice and aggression (speak nicely to him) ie: easy and  pleasant with gentleness,  leniency and politeness in words, without incoherence or arrogance in speech or rudeness in actions.  "perhaps" because of the nice speech " he remembers "what benefits him and embraces it" or fear "what hurts him and abandons it, for  the soft statement alone demands this and the rude words alone deters from it. The words of softness and kindness were interpreted in His saying:

فَقُلْ هَل لَّكَ إِلَىٰٓ أَن تَزَكَّىٰ

وَأَهْدِيَكَ إِلَىٰ رَبِّكَ فَتَخْشَىٰ

And say, "Do you care to be cleansed? And I will guide you to your Lord, and you will turn reverent."(An-Naazi’aat: 18-19).

In this speech (the above verse) are words of kindness, ease and lack of repulsiveness, which are not hidden to the contemplator. He started with the word:  "Do"-which depicts the act of offer and consultation, which no one will detest.  He then invited him towards cleansing and purification from filths whose origin is to be purged of polytheism, which every wise person would gladly accepts. He did not say: "I will purify you’ rather he said: “to be cleansed” that’s you clean yourself. He then called him to the path of his lord Who created him and bestowed upon him both apparent and hidden favors which need to be encountered with appreciation and remembrance, hence, he said:” And I will guide you to your Lord, and you will turn reverent”. From here, it becomes clear the importance of tenderness and gentleness when inviting non-Muslims with the aim of influencing  them and taken opportunity to give them da’wa (invitation to islam) . [22] .

From among the methods - also – which encourages entering into is reminding them Allah’s favors upon them. Allah reminded of that and said:

يَٰبَنِىٓ إِسْرَٰٓءِيلَ ٱذْكُرُوا۟ نِعْمَتِىَ ٱلَّتِىٓ أَنْعَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ وَأَوْفُوا۟ بِعَهْدِىٓ أُوفِ بِعَهْدِكُمْ وَإِيَّٰىَ فَٱرْهَبُونِ

 “O Children of Israel! Remember My blessings which I bestowed upon you, and fulfill your pledge to Me, and I will fulfill My pledge to you, and fear Me” (Al-Baqara:40)

And He says again:

يَٰبَنِىٓ إِسْرَٰٓءِيلَ ٱذْكُرُوا۟ نِعْمَتِىَ ٱلَّتِىٓ أَنْعَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ وَأَنِّى فَضَّلْتُكُمْ عَلَى ٱلْعَٰلَمِينَ

“O Children of Israel! Remember My favor which I bestowed upon you, and that I favored you over all nations.(of your time)”(Al-Baqara:47)

These methods need the appropriate means to be used to communicate them.

References

13-Tafseer Al-Qur’an Al-Azeem. Ibn Katheer second edition Daarul-Qalam: Beirut

14-see: Uslub al-Munazara fi da’wati an-Nasaara Ilal Islam: Dr. Ibrahim Allihaidaan

15-Lisaanul-Arab

16 see: kaifa intashara al-islaam by Al-Mu’ayyid al-kailani

17 see previous source

18-see reference 13

19-see: Mukhtar As-Sihaah pp: 251 by fakhr ar-Raazi

20-reported by Bukhari

21-reported by Imam Abu Daawud in his sunnan

22- reported by Bukhari and Imam Muslim

 

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