By Saud Inam
Madinah, which brings to mind the beauty of the Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) masjid, is considered the first Muslim community in Islamic history. Many of us may think that the first thing the Prophet Muhammad (SAW)* did when he came to Madinah was build a masjid, which served as the center of the community. But we are forgetting something vastly important.
When the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) first entered Madinah, he didn’t just build a masjid, he built a community. How did he do this? He paired Ansaar and Muhajir together. Today, we have beautiful masjids, but not much by way of cohesive communities. It is important for us to go back to the sunnah of the Prophet and adopt his model of first building a community, then the structure.
The masjid is the heart of a community, likewise the community is the heart of the masjid. With this in mind, it’s important for us to create a loving, compassionate, and caring community. Today, our social circles revolve around people who look like us, eat like us, and live like us — yet the Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) community had brothers and sisters from different parts of the world.
He celebrated and appreciated diversity. He welcomed it.
To emulate him today, we must learn to change and embrace one another — especially our new Muslim brothers and sisters. One of the most difficult things for a new Muslim convert is dealing with family and community pressures. Just as the Muhajir immigrated from oppression and injustice, new Muslims are making a transition to a new life.
We must embrace them no matter if they are black or white, man or woman, adult or child. New Muslims are largely making big steps in changing their lives and lifestyles for Allah alone. We must do our best to take care of them. Here are a few tips to help:
Next: Be a true friend.