Giving incorrect information about Islam unknowingly
Fatwa No: 198821

  • Fatwa Date:23-2-2013 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 13, 1434
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Question

As-salamu 3laikum, I reverted to Islam almost two years ago. When I first reverted, the Muslims that I got to know had quite liberal interpretations of Islam. I paid attention to what they said, thinking that, as Muslims, they would not give me incorrect information. However, I knew theirs was not the only opinion. I continued to study Islam and moved back to my own country. Some friends, family members and teachers asked me some questions about Islam. Keen to answer them and spread the message of Islam, I gave them answers based on what I had heard from ‘liberal’ Muslims, and tried to represent different opinions. Through further study, I discovered that the answers I had given were either incomplete or had some inaccuracies. Later, I realised that speaking without knowledge was a serious matter. Earlier I had thought that it meant deliberately inventing falsehoods about Islam. Now alhamdulilah I have a better understanding of the importance of referring matters to scholars and being completely sure of the accuracy of anything we say about Islam. I repented to Allah for having spoken carelessly. My question is, in order for my repentance to be valid, do I have to contact the people who asked me questions and correct what I said immediately, knowing that they will find this strange. Or should I wait for another opportunity to talk to them and bring it up in conversation naturally? How should I approach the subject? Please advise. Jazak Allahu khair.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His Slave and Messenger.

 

First of all, we congratulate you for the favor of Islam that Allaah The Almighty has bestowed on you. May Allaah The Almighty reward you the best for your keenness on spreading the message of Islam and may Allaah help you and make you steadfast in adhering to the path of goodness.

There is absolutely no doubt that not all who belong to Islam have sufficient knowledge of the matters of religion; rather, there are some who hold ideas that go against Islam totally as we observe regarding those who are called liberalists. Praise be to Allaah The Almighty Who enlightened you and made you realize their mistakes.

Regarding the matters of religion, it is incumbent upon you to refer to the trustworthy scholars who have deep knowledge about it. Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {So ask the people of the message if you do not know.} [Quran 16:43]

Generally, it is prohibited to give Fatwa without knowledge for Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {Say, "My Lord has only forbidden immoralities - what is apparent of them and what is concealed - and sin, and oppression without right, and that you associate with Allaah that for which He has not sent down authority, and that you say about Allaah that which you do not know."} [Quran 7:33]

As for giving some people wrong information about Islam unknowingly, we hope that there will be no blame on you regarding that for you were then a new convert to Islam and you had no bad intention in what you did. Amongst the supplications of the believers stated in the Noble Quran is (what means): {"Our Lord, do not impose blame upon us if we have forgotten or erred.} [Quran 2:286] It was also authentically reported from the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, that Allaah The Almighty said: "I did (accept your supplication)." [Muslim]

Anyway, it is obligatory upon you to correct such incorrect information which you have told those people. If you cannot do that directly, then there is no harm to do it indirectly and in whatever way that can achieve that aim.

Allaah Knows best.

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