Imams and Khatibs need dialogues with the congregation
Monday, July 02, 2007
Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.
This post is dedicated to the Imams and Khatibs here in Malaysia and also to
those living in the rest of the Muslim world.
I pray that you are in the best of Iman, Health and Wealth with your loved ones.
Ameen Ya Rabbal Alameen.
Today, I would like to touch on the need of dialogues and interactions between
those of you who have been appointed as Imams and Khatibs and the general
Ummah..mainly with the jamaah @ congregations of your respective masjids and
The time has come for you O respected Imam's and Khatib's to spare some of your
precious minutes or hours to engage in post solat dialogue sessions after each
fard prayers or the weekly Jumaat prayers with those amongst the jama'ah @
congregation who have questions about matters concerning religious matters or
those related to the topic of the Friday Khutbah that you just delivered.
It's not my intention to introduce something new as a form of bida'ah @
innovation into the faith but in these times where the Muslims are undergoing
tremendous challenges in their daily life's as a result of these hedonistic era
where the government of this land encourages and promotes it unabashedly through
the various multimedia and broadcasting channels.
Challenging times need creative measures. This initiative will bolster the image
and character of the Imam's and Khatib's to be proactive and dynamic in their
roles as the leaders of the Ummah.
Shying away from the roles that they have got themselves into is a gross breach
of trust and neglecting the huge responsibilities that the people have placed in
The Imam's and Khatib's can't just dictate to the congregation and get away
without explaining in detail or clear any confusions that might arise in the
hearts and minds of the very people they just preached to.
Many amongst the Muslims lack understanding and aren't clear about the do's and
don'ts of the Islamic Faith and they live their life's as they please without
giving a hoot about what's halal, haram, sunat, makruh, etcetera.
We see all kinds of immoral activities and moral decay taking place in our midst
everyday here in this nation and throughout the world. The religious authorities
seem ineffective and powerless to do anything about it as a result of their lack
of awareness as to how to go about addressing these problems.
Many Ulamaks, Imams and Khatibs leave their Ummah clueless about how to deal
with the various challenges facing them today and they usually give all kinds of
cock and bull excuses to save their butts from accepting responsibilities
towards the salvation of the Muslim Ummah!
What a bloody shame! These criminal breach of trust won't go unpunished by Allah
for these alims are held accountable for their people's misdeeds.
I suggest that every Imam and Khatib of this nation spend at least half an hour
after each fard prayers or the Friday prayers to engage in a dialogue with the
Jama'ah and answer their questions about matters concerning the faith of Islam.
We all know that the usual practice in every masjid or surau is to have some
sort of an inner clique where the Imam or the Khatib will disappear into the
masjid's office with their inner circle and avoid interacting with the
congregation immediately after praying their sunat nawafil prayers.
This takes place in practically each and every masjid or surau of this nation
effectively cutting off communications between the Ulama' and the 'Umara.
Is this the example shown by the Prophet Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam? I am sure
it is not!
It doesn't hurt to spend some time talking to members of the congregation,
listen to their troubles, offer them a way out or answer their questions about
matters they are confused about.
The Deen of Islam is 'Nasihah' @ 'Advice' and the Imam's or the Khatib's ought
to put it to practice. There's no point in preaching to the masses but not
following up with the details or how to's!
To nip the problems affecting the Ummah in the bud, the Imams and the Khatibs
ought to start at the grassroots level. Speak to the people.
Smile as often as possible and practice what you preach. Show them that you care
for them sincerely and not just get away with giving them mere 'lip service'. We
don't need actors!
There's just too many artistes around. Take a pebble and throw into a crowd. You
are bound to hit a singer or an actor or actress! This is what this nation seems
to be enamored with.
Not a day goes by without a reality show being hosted and hundreds of thousands
of mostly Malay Muslims young males and females aspire to be the latest star and
singing sensation of this hedonistic nation.
Singers and performers get decorated with titles and rewarded with the affluence
of this life whilst the Mufti's and Religious figures get hounded into obscurity
when they ever dare to speak up against the rot taking place in Malaysia
effectively silencing the 'learned ones' into shutting the hell up and fear for
This is the state of affairs of our religious scholars! Reduced to being the
official ' Do'a Reciter' for the various hedonistic programs of this 'Islam
Hadhari' Government of Malaysia! Hooray!!!
The Imams and the Khatibs have been reduced to being just prayer leaders and to
'read' the prepared khutbah texts of JAKIM @ the Islamic Development Department
Anyone trying to preach to the congregation as Allah SWT commands them will
incur the wrath of those who are ordered to toe the line of the powers that be
or risk being sacked and removed from their official government jobs and
The Imams and the Khatibs are now cuckolded and the entertainers and performers
feted in the royal courts and awarded medals and prestigious titles.
What a screwed up hypocritical life this is? Islam Hadhari? Yeah...right!
Islam needs its ulamaks and heirs to the Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi
Wassallam to return to their roots and stand up to fulfill their roles as the
advisers and guides of the Ummah to show and guide them back to the fundamentals
of the faith.
The scholars need to break free from the encumbrances now stifling them from
performing their respectful roles as the leaders of this Ummah and stop
kowtowing to the powers that be and neglect the people by not doing what they
are expected to do by Allah SWT and His Messenger!
Have the initiative to stop the rot from destroying the Ummah and spend time
with them after each fard prayers and the Friday prayers. As it is , not many
people listen to the Khutbah and they just chat amongst themselves not paying
heed to whatever prepared text that is being read by the Khatib.
Yeah, the Khatibs are now official newsreaders of JAKIM. They have been stopped
from preaching to the masses. Go ask any Khatib worth his salt and you will
learn that he is under orders to read whatever that JAKIM has prepared and
posted to him or hand delivered.
Any attempts to preach anything on his own will see the poor fella get a show
cause letter within the week and a threat to dismiss him from his post. Go on.
Ask your local Imam or Khatib if it is true or false?
Any Muslim must fear and oblige only Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala. He or she must
not submit towards any threat or harassments from their fellow beings.
We live and we die with the Will of Allahu Akbar. Whom would we face when we
pass away from this world if not Allah, Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala?
Come dear Imams and Khatibs of Islam. Return to the fitrah of being a Caller to
Islam. The Ummah needs you. Lead them well and do not fear anyone except Allah!
Just leading the obligatory prayers and reciting the Do'a is not what He has
created you to be.
You need to lead the ummah. Speak to them. Listen to their grievances. Show them
the way. Guide them. Lead them towards Allah's Salvation.
The Ulamaks need to free themselves from being caught in the doldrums of fear
and uselessness. You are responsible to ensuring that your congregation are
aware of the tenets and principles of Islam. It is you who will be held
accountable for all the things happening in your place and kariah @ masjid's
The Malays of Malaysia need your guidance. No more excuses or cock and bull
stories. As the Imams and Khatibs of your respective masjid's jurisdiction, you
hold responsibility to see to it that your kariah is safe from maksiat and
The Islamic Religious Department all over the nation ought to wake up and lead
the people to a better future and avoid passing the buck or blaming whatever
situations affecting the place on others. Start cleaning up the mess and avoid
shying away from carrying out enforcement of the Syariah laws.
Fear Allah. Respect human beings. Guide those who need you to a better
May the Imams and Khatibs of this nation heed my calling to them and start
holding the dialogue sessions that I propose between them and the members of the
congregation after each major prayer session and after each Friday prayers.
Where there's a will, there'll definitely be a way! Do not let this society go
to waste as a result of your being hesitant to do what you have been appointed
to do. The nation's Muslims future depends on you.
Last thing that I want to ask is that you the Imams and Khatibs of Malaysia
start smiling. Nobody likes to see a stern, frowning face!
When you face your congregation from the mimbar @ pulpit, can't you smile at
them? Almost every Khatib I have seen looks like they are constipated when they
stand up there in the pulpit, admonishing the jamaah!
Remember that before you are hundreds and thousands of Muslims who have gathered
before Allah SWT and have answered the Call to Prayer.
These are the good ones before you. They are guests of Allah the Almighty just
like you. You must smile at them and appreciate their being there. Without them
being present, who are you being an Imam to?
Learn to appreciate the jamaah and show them that you do care for them. Yours is
a trust that needs you to live up to.
An Imam or a Khatib is nobody without the Jama'ah! Be kind to them and share
some time with them, answering any questions they might have or want to ask
about concerning their life's.
Remember that it is a sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam
to smile and be kind and gentle towards the jamaah, when they are doing right.
You can be stern when and if the situation and circumstances warrant you to be
so but not all the time, please.
A smile is but a sadaqah and those of you who shy away from smiling because you
have missing teeth, fret not for we the jamaah can pool our resources to sponsor
your dentures if it comes to such a situation. :D
Looking forward to a positive response from you gentlemen and wishing you all
the best in your life and careers!
May Allah SWT bless us all. Ameen. Wabillahi Taufeek Wal Hidayah.
Wassalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.