The Arabic term da’wah is derived from the verb da’a which means ” to call, to invite, i.e. to call on the One and Only God.” It is used to refer to the act of conveying or calling people to the message of Islam.
The Quran categorically revels as,
>Say, ˹O Prophet,˺ “This is my way. I invite to Allah with insight—I and those who follow me. Glory be to Allah, and I am not one of the polytheists.”
—[Al Qur’an 12:108]
>Say, “This is my way; I invite to Allah with insight, I and those who follow me. And exalted is Allah; and I am not of those who associate others with Him.”
— [Al Qur’an 12:108]
Da’wah in Islamic technical sense means inviting people towards Islamic faith and its practice. Da’wah is the invitation addressed to men by Allah through the messenger to believe in the true religion, Islam. All the Messengers have been sent to invite and guide the mankind towards their actual lord, Allah.
As the Holy Quran Said;
>Mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent Messengers with glad tidings and warnings; and with them He sent the Book in truth, to judge between people in matters wherein they differed; but the People of the Book, after the clear Signs came to them, did not differ among themselves, except through selfish contumacy. Allah by His Grace Guided the believers to the Truth, concerning that wherein they differed. For Allah guided whom He will to a path that is straight.
[Al Qur’an 2:213]
Scope of Dawah:
Thus, scope of dawah extends to a wider range which involves:
- Inviting people towards the Islamic faith and its practice
- Witnessing in favour of the ultimate truth Islam, giving witness by words and deeds
- Warning people against the dreadful consequences of rejecting the truth or neglecting it
- Advising people to accept Islam and to practice it
- Conveying the message of Islam to everyone
- Giving people glad tidings about the beneficial results of accepting and practicing the truth
- Reminding people of the forgotten reality that their real success and salvation lies in accepting the way ordained for them by the creator.
Da’wah is based on the feelings of love and fraternity. Islam believes that the entire humanity is the family of ALLAH and therefore all human beings are the members of this family. This love for humanity is deep rooted and comprehensive – wishing their worldly success and above it their spiritual salvation.
Da’wah in the light of Quran and Hadith:
Importance of Da’wah is quite evident from it being the prophetic domain and from its weightiness in driving people towards the ultimate truth. It is an admitted fact that the last Messenger has been commanded to proclaim the Message, which has been revealed to him by his lord and responsibility of Da’wah was, then after the Messenger passed on the Ummah.
Allah says [Al Qur’an 41:33] :
>Who is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allah, works righteousness, and says, “I am of those who bow in Islam”? — Yusuf Ali.
>And who is better in speech than he who [says: “My Lord is Allah (believes in His Oneness),” and then stands firm (acts upon His Order), and] invites (men) to Allah’s (Islamic Monotheism), and does righteous deeds, and says: “I am one of the Muslims.” — Mohsin Khan.
>And who is better in speech than one who invites to Allah and does righteousness and says, “Indeed, I am of the Muslims.” — Saheeh.