07 Jul Someone said something very offensive to me about Islam, how should I react?
Someone said something very offensive to me about Islam, how should I react?
Salam! Someone said something terribly offensive to me and Islam but I just gritted my teeth because I knew I’d say something offensive and the whole thing would escalate. My colleague said ‘I’m tired of all these f***ing halal butchers everywhere. Sometimes I just want pork chops and a good old English bakery but everywhere is just f***ing halal’ and they said no offence to me casually. I was so outraged and just nodded. I regret this so much now. How must I approach situations like that?
Wa alykum as-salaam!
There is a Hadith from The Prophet, where he is reported have said in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad:
“When one of you is angry, he should be silent.”
Now, this person clearly thinks that “no offense” should suffice to placate you, and therefore rather than judging this person, realize that your anger will not do anything to change their perspective, it will simply reinforce their position.
The Prophet advised us to stay silent when we are angry. Why? To make us push our emotions down, to allow ignorance to fester?
Not at all.
Let me ask you: when was the last time that you reacted properly when you were angry? When was the last time that the things you said, when you were angry, were the right things to say?
I’m not sure about you, but, I’ve never said things in anger that were accurate of my feelings.
Do not regret your silence, because at that moment that was the right thing to do. You would have reacted poorly, because at that moment you were not defending Islam, you were defending something that was personally offensive to you.
When you disconnect your Nafs (ego) from the situation, then you will know what to say, because it isn’t about you. But, as long as your Nafs (ego) is in the way, your anger will emerge.
Because in those moments when your anger emerges, that is when you have confused Haqq (Truth) with your Nafs (ego), whenever you confuse those two, anger will always be the result.
Therefore, do not allow regret to be the lesson you take from this situation, but an example of how you must focus your efforts into separating your ego from discussions on Islam, whether positive or negative, because when your ego is there, you will say inaccurate things, you will push people away from Islam because you are concerned about protecting your ego, not Islam.
Therefore, you did the right thing by staying silent, because you were aware that you would say something offensive, and no matter what is said to you, we are to respond with kindness, for The Qur’an says:
“For, [true] servants of the Most Gracious are [only] they who walk gently on earth, and who, whenever the foolish address them, reply with [words of] peace;” [25:63] Muhammad Asad
I pray this reaches you and your families in the best of health and Iman, insha Allah.