كيف يدعو المتعلم إلى الله؟
An advice on how to call to Allah the people immersed in the Dunya by Ibn ul Qayyim al Jawziyyah
The learned individual does not command the people to abandon the Dunya, for they are incapable of abandoning it. Rather he instructs them to abandon wrongdoing with their [continue] residence in the Dunya. For the abandonment of the Dunya is supererogatory, but the abandonment of wrongdoing is obligatory. Accordingly, how can an [individual] be commanded to a supererogatory action, when he has [neglected] to establish an obligatory one?!
If the abandonment of wrongdoing becomes difficult for them to [endure], endeavour to make them love Allah by [means] of mentioning His Signs, His Blessings, His Munificence, His Perfect Attributes, and Exalted Descriptions. For indeed the heart is naturally inclined towards His love.
If it is attached towards His love, the abandonment of wrongdoing and independence from it, in addition to the persistence upon it shall become easy [to obtain]. Verily, Yahya ibn Mu`adh mentioned,
Questing for an intelligent [person] for [the affairs of] the Dunya,
Is superior to the abandonment of an ignorant [person] for it.
A judicious man invites people towards Allah, thus the [act] of responding becomes easy for them. An ascetic invites them towards Allah by the abandonment of the Dunya, thus the [act] of responding becomes difficult for them.
Excerpted from the translator's footnotes to "An Explanation of Riyadh al-Saliheen"
by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Salih al-Uthaymeen
Translated from al-Fawa'id by Sajad ibn `Abdur Rahman, © 1998 Sajad Rana