A lot of sisters came out of the dunya ready to practice Islam to the fullest, but when brothers started to play games and act like little boys, things went sour. Let’s not forget that part. Too many of our men these days, especially Black Muslim men in Muslim America, are falling apart. That is not good. I’m not making light of men’s feelings and emotional and mental issues. I’m just saying that it’s not good, and it’s not good for our children to see so many of our men falling apart and broken. I guess it could happen to any of us. I just hate to see so many of our men go out like that. We’ve even started to applaud men for speaking publicly of their brokenness, and at the same time, we attack men who show strength. The culture of man-bashing and self deprecation is starting to tale it’s toll. Weakness is the new normal, giving up is the new Muslim vogue. I don’t understand how we let this happen. Something is terribly wrong. Black American Muslims have an absence of manhood pandemic on our hands.
Don’t think for a moment that the Prophet (SAWS) and his companions (RA) didn’t suffer from grief, from loss, from hunger, from fear, trauma, from depression, from anger issues, from marriage issues, from suffering or from oppression. However, they did not give up, and they did not abdicate their manhood and sense of responsibility. Sometimes they came close to giving up, but they held on. What they didn’t do though, is act as a mob. They had amirs, imams, teachers, workers, soldiers, builders, businessmen and women, who made commitments, made pledges and took responsibility for things. They actively participated in the affairs of the Muslims. So whenever we talk about getting things done, and men being men, following the methodology of the Messenger of Allah is a good start. Seriously, if Muslim men went sahaba style, it would greatly mitigate our manhood problem. There is a reason why the Prophet ص called them the best generation. Despite their hardships, struggles and shortcomings, I can find nothing in seerah or early Muslim history that indicates that Muslim men or the companions of the Prophet (SAWS) simply gave up from striving in the path of Allah. Men can be rebuilt by Allah’s permission but it’s very very difficult, once they are broken. Once a grown man is rendered a child, it is hard to come off of that. You don’t get too many chances in life to become a man. This is why it’s important that males learn to be men early on, especially before they get feminized.
I was taught that a Muslim man is supposed to stay strong despite adversity and hardship. To trust in Allah and keep moving forward no matter what. To maintain courage, do what is right, and obey Allah and His messenger to the best of your ability, to have good character and repent often, and to speak the truth, even if the people don’t like it, or don’t like you for it. That is what my father Shaykh Abdulkarim Ahmad, taught me. Jazaaka Allahu khairan Abu. May Allah reward and preserve you.
We should not be a people who celebrate weakness. During the time of the Prophet (SAWS), the weak were led, aided, and championed by the strong, The Prophet (SAWS) acknowledged both and place each in his proper place so that the train could still move. When Bilal was a slave under torture, the Prophet (SAWS) commanded Abu Bakr to purchase and free him. When Umar ibn al-Khattaab (strong) converted to Islam, the Muslims established the salat at the Ka’aba. When the weak and appressed were not safe in Mecca anmore, the Prophet (SAWS) ordered the Muslims to made hijrah to Abyssinia, their Amir was Ja’afar ibn Abi Talib, and the strong stayed in Mecca.
When the time came for battle, the weak and the sick were excused but the strong had to go forward and fight. And at no lime were people left without a head except for the provisions of the treaty of hudaybiyyah where a weak Muslim outside of the community could be left alone and not join the jamaa’aat (congregation). After that treaty was broken by the Meccans, the women who made hjrah were not allowed to return to be under their kuffar husbands.
During the time of the Prophet (SAWS) and hence forward, the Muslims did not move and act as a mob. Even when Muslims (sadly) fought each other, each side had an amir (leader). A strong Muslim man can carry ten weak men, and help strengthen them by the permission of Allah. Although there is good both, a strong Mu’min (believer), is better and more beloved to Allah than a weak Mu’min.
Now if you were not taught that, or not taught how to be a man, then that is not my fault. And if you don’t know these things, then you should learn them now. These are things that every Muslim man should know, Period. Muslims in the 15th century of the hijrah, should not be going back and forth about who, and what is a real man like they don’t know what a man is, when we are supposed to be following the best man in the messenger of Allah. And Allah knows best.
Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad
Imam Abu Laith Luqman Ahmad delivers the Friday Khutba, and is an Associate Imam and Resident Scholar at the Toledo Masjid of Islam in Toledo, Ohio, He is a writer, lecturer and the author of the book; “Double Edged Slavery“, a book about the condition of African American Muslim converts in America, and ‘TheDevil’s Deception of the Modern day Salafi Sect’. You can support this project through Cash app to: $abulaith. He can be reached at, email@example.com