The Islamic Position on Protests & Demonstrations | Shaykh Aḥmad an-Najmī

[Observation No. 23: Organizing marches and demonstrations.]

Islam does not recognize this act nor does it approve it. Rather it has originated from the acts of the disbelievers and has been transferred to us (Muslims) from them. For, as and when the disbelievers did an act, we went along with them in it and followed them upon it.

Indeed Islam did not gain victory through marches and demonstrations, rather it gained victory through Jihād (struggle) that is established upon the correct Aqīdah (creed) and the way that was shown by Muḥammad bin Abdullāh -sallAllāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam-. The Messengers and their followers were afflicted by various kinds of afflictions, yet they were not commanded except with patience. This is what Mūsā عليه السلام said to Banī Isrā’īl in spite of what they suffered due to Fir’aun and his people from massacring the male children that were born and leaving the females alive. He said to them that which Allāh -ʿAzza wa Jalla- informed us with;

﴿ وَلَقَدْ كَرَّمْنَا بَنِي آدَمَ وَحَمَلْنَاهُمْ فِي الْبَرِّ وَالْبَحْرِ وَرَزَقْنَاهُم مِّنَ الطَّيِّبَاتِ وَفَضَّلْنَاهُمْ عَلَىٰ كَثِيرٍ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقْنَا تَفْضِيلًا – 17:70 ﴾

And indeed We have honoured the Children of Adam, and We have carried them on land and sea, and have provided them with At-Taiyibat (lawful good things), and have preferred them above many of those whom We have created with a marked preference.

Surah al-Isra 17:70

“Mūsā said to his people: “Seek aid from Allah and be patient. Verily, the earth is Allah’s. He gives it as a heritage to whom He wills of His slaves, and the (blessed) end is for the Muttaqūn (pious ones)””

Sūrah al-A’rāf 7:128

And this is what the Messenger of Allah said to some of his companions when they complained to him about that which they faced from the Mushrikūn;

“Indeed from those who came before you, one (believer) would be seized and a saw would be placed at his parting until that which is between his legs be split into two halves. Yet, that would not cause him to revert from his religion. Verily Allah will accomplish this affair until (a time when) a man would travel from San‘aa to Hadramaut fearing none except Allah and the wolf lest it should trouble his sheep, but you are an impatient lot.”

Nūr al-Yaqīn. (Translator: Basis of this Ḥadīth narrated by Khabbāb bin al-Aratt in Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 6943)

And so, he did not direct his companions with demonstrations and assassinations.

– From Shaykh Aḥmad bin Yaḥyā an-Najmī’s book “Al-Mawrid al-‘Adhb al-Zilāl”, Pg. 205-206

– Translated by Abu Aasiya Muzaffar غفر الله له ولوالديه