Dec 21 2012

The Sunnah of Personal Protection

Note: ‘Sunnah’ is an Arabic word which means the example and practices of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

By Will Coley
December 2012

With the recent tragedy in Connecticut, and the calls of some liberal mainstream Muslim organizations for gun control, some people have asked us to weigh in on this topic. As with all things, M4L chooses to look for the solutions to life’s problems within the traditions of Islam, rather than simply following what is popular within a particular political party.  When pushed by members and fans to tell people what I “really think” about guns in the Muslim community, I reply, “you don’t want to know what I REALLY think”. My ideas by modern fear-based standards are perceived as radical, maybe even dangerous, but not as dangerous as the repercussions of NOT enacting them.

With Democrat leaders calling for gun control it is not surprising to see mainstream Muslim groups echo that call. But is disarming the populace, leaving them unable to defend their homes or their property, a part of the sunnah? Are we once again turning away from basic precepts of our faith, to please our new awliya in the Democrat party? In the times of old it was required of all Muslim males over the age of puberty to not only be armed, but to be trained in the effective use of those arms in case the need arose to protect his person, his family, his property, his deen, or the ummah. There are many hadeeth traditions referring to the arms of the sahaba, even narrations discussing a Muslim walking through the mosque with a quiver of arrows on his back, and we have modern Muslim leaders calling for gun control?

With all this political hub bub, one wonders what is the view of Islam that is being lost in the middle? What is the sunnah of self defense? Based on what I have studied, the sunnah IS self defense, and retaining arms to do so, from all forms of oppression and treachery. Any 2nd Amendment buff worth his salt will tell you, “the 2nd amendment isn’t about hunting, or chasing of petty robbers, it’s about defending our rights from tyranny”, and Islam would agree. When our property is threatened, we are to fight to the death if need be. The right to defend one’s private property is so serious that if one dies while doing so he is, by the Prophet(saws)’s own words, a martyr.

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:
A man came to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said:
O Messenger of Allaah, what do you think if a man comes wanting to take my property?
(The prophet) replied: “Do not give him your property.”
He said: What if he fights me?
(The prophet) replied: “Fight him.”
He said: What if he kills me?
(The prophet) replied: “Then you will be a martyr.”
He said: What if I kill him?
(The prophet) replied: “He will be in Hell.”

Narrated by Muslim (Book1, No 259).


Islam also advocates the use of arms in the resistance of tyranny and oppression ,

“And when you are among them and lead them in prayer, only a group of them should be with you, and they must keep their weapons with them; so when they have performed their prostrations they should move away behind you; and the other group that had not prayed, must come and offer prayers in your leadership, keeping their guard and weapons with them; the disbelievers wish that you neglect your arms and your means so they may overpower you with a single attack; it is no sin for you to lay aside your arms due to rain or if you are sick; and keep your guard; undoubtedly Allah has kept prepared a disgraceful punishment for the disbelievers.”

[Qur’an 4:102]


There is a much bigger issue at play here within the Muslims community though. It is an issue of fear, of a fear of protecting one’s self. A fear that protecting yourself, your property, and your family will make you a target of government. This fear makes us powerless, this fear makes our sisters, our wives,our mothers, our daughters, and our communities vulnerable. Earlier this year a man walked into a Sikh temple and opened fire and killed 7 people, many theorized it was a case of mistaken identity, and that he meant to target Muslims. After that a rash of anti Muslim attacks spread across the country, shootings, bombings, arson, all targeted attacks against Muslims. With all this, we have Muslim abandoning the sunnah and advocating that Muslims, and all other Americans, be stripped of a valuable means of defending themselves.

My opinion, and the official M4L opinion is there should be NO gun control. That when the American constitution says “congress shall make no law”, then that is EXACTLY what was meant for all rights. I think EVERY father, brother, and husband should invest the time and the money to arm his wife,sister, daughter or mother. Our sisters are the most vulnerable members of our community and we can not always be there to protect them, we should love and cherish them enough to teach them to protect themselves. I would like to see TWO medium caliber pistol in EVERY mosque. One in the office and one on the sister’s side. Keep them in keypad safes, and EVERY sister over the age of 14 needs to know both the combination, and how to properly use the weapon inside. Every major spree shooting that has been stopped with minimal injury and loss of life was stopped by a civilian with a gun, and who knew how to use it. The next time a loon decides to target Muslims, he just might find his intended targets. What will YOU do to protect your community? And how will you do it if the government has disarmed you?

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