Knowledge of the Qur’an and our Fatemi heritage is the source of radiance and grace, noor and barakat, for this world and the next. Mumineen should make it a priority to learn ilm of Aal-e-Muhammad. They should also know that it is completely acceptable, nay, it is necessary, to ask questions in order to understand.
In addition to deeni taleem, mumineen should also strive to get the best possible secular education. Imam Ahmad al-MastoorAS has said, “Religion is not just prayer and fasting; rather it means striving for prosperity both in this world and the next” (laysa d-deeno sawman wa-salaatan faqat, innama d-deeno ‘imaaratu d-dunya wa-l-aakhira). We are on the path of truth in religion, and we can also be ahead in this world. Our community is proud to have among its members large numbers of highly-educated individuals and professionals.
Women have a right to education and should be empowered to exercise that right. RasulullahSA has said “Seeking knowledge is a mandatory act, a farizat, incumbent upon every Muslim man and Muslim woman” (talabu-l-‘ilmi farizatun ‘ala kulli muslimin wa-muslimatin). Their first duty is to nurture their family, but they should also strive for dynamic participation in Dawat khidmat and in society at large. Our models are Maulatuna Fatema and Maulatuna Hurrat-ul-Malika, embodiments of perfect womanhood, repositories of ilm, exemplars of piety, and illustrious propagators of Dawat-ul-haqq.
Women play a vital role in our community. While traditional skills of homemaking are important, they are not the only things that are important, and they certainly should not be presented as a criterion for salvation, najaat. Hand in hand with the primary responsibility of caring for husbands and children, and while always maintaining lihaaz (modesty in dress and behavior) women should strive for the best possible education, become accomplished homemakers, and also doctors, teachers, engineers and business leaders - break the glass ceiling. This is the vision propagated by Syedna Taher Saifuddin, Syedna Mohammad Burhanuddin and our noble mawali; it is their wish and their command.
Syedna Qutbuddin has encouraged his own children, both daughters and sons, to strive for excellence in religious as well as secular learning; something that is achievable through hard work and conviction. He has regularly taught them sabaq in Dawat texts, zahir, tawil and haqiqat. He has also encouraged them to pursue Ph.D. degrees in Arabic and Islamic studies in renowned world universities, and to publish their research on Aal-e-Muhammad in acclaimed university presses, in order to make the eminence of our mawali known to all the world. Moreover, he has promoted their pursuit of degrees in psychology, computer science, English literature, journalism and political science.
Dawat dues and waajebaat will be collected strictly in line with Shariat rules, not randomly higher and higher on individual whim. Zakat is compulsory at the rate of 2.5 percent on savings that you’ve held on to over the past year; only the Fitro (Zakat al-Fitr) is compulsory on everyone regardless of income. The notion of taking out a loan to pay wajebaat is preposterous. The distinction between compulsory and voluntary, farizat and sunnat, must be maintained. Mumineen cannot be denied the right to pray namaaz in masjid or to submit zakat, citing other transgressions. Mumineen should be encouraged to spend generously in Dawat khidmat and charity schemes, but they should not be forced or coerced.
An atmosphere of constant soliciting for funds should not prevail in Dawat gatherings. The first duty incumbent upon a mumin is worship of God. Mumineen should regularly attend namaaz and majliso in the masjid with tranquility and decorum, without having to worry about bringing five separate envelopes. All your good deeds should be done with the sincere intention of pleasing Allah, li-wajh-i-llah. That is true khidmat, for which Allah will reward you.
Corruption among members of the administration is not acceptable and must be rooted out. Funds should not be collected in the name of a particular objective, only to be used for something else. Accounts must be clean and transparent, as was the case when Syedna Qutbuddin handled the Saifee Memorial Trust Foundation and the Dubai masjid debt payment many years ago.
The Dawat administration and the well-to-do should always be extremely concerned for the well-being of the less advantaged people within our community, and try hard to ensure that all have at least the basic necessities of food, shelter and clothing. We should also strive to teach these, our brothers and sisters, the means to help themselves through education and entrepreneurship schemes. The charities founded and supervised by Syedna Qutbuddin, such as Zahra Hasanaat and the Qutbi Jubilee Scholarship Program for Higher Education (QJSP), are examples of this sage and conscientious philosophy. They are forward-looking institutions for the benefit of all mumineen. Syedna Qutbuddin’s efforts in this regard are a true implementation of Syedna Burhanuddin’s directives to help mumineen.
Our community should have a dynamic business outlook in this information age, a cutting-edge approach that leads us to prosperity in today’s fast-moving world. Our business vitality should not be lost due to lack of funding. It should not be undercut because of restrictions and directives that have no true basis in Shariat. Our mawali have said that Shariat is ‘samhaa’ and accommodating, not harsh or rigid. While keeping within Shariat laws at all times, mumineen should be encouraged to take advantage of modern-day financial institutions. They should strive to learn new technologies and practices, and advance in business acumen and reach.