There are many things that people choose to make their hill to die on, the significant contribution they made here, but what they often overlook is whether that’s gonna be the thing they want to meet God with. Imagine standing before the Lord of all the worlds, King of kings, Subduer of all realms, and speaking of the greatest contribution you sought to God’s plan for humans on earth:
“I wanted to make sure we sighted the moon properly”
“I tried to get people to believe the Prophet was alive/dead in his grave”
“I tried to convince people that shaikh X was the greatest scholar”
“My mission was decolonialism”
“I was a proud anti-racism campaigner”
“I argued against critics of x mad’hab”
“I wanted to prove Jesus shall return”
“I wanted people to know wiping over their socks in wudhu isn’t allowed”
Now neither is my point to negate the idea that we all naturally have different roles to play for the collective benefit of God’s servants, nor that some of these things aren’t important to the greater plan, but God didn’t put us on earth primarily for any one of the above nor is every one of things legitimately a task for everyone.
Yes, many of these things some of us ought to pay attention to, but it should be in a way that speaks to the overall divine project, not as singular subject matters in and of themselves.
One of the main tasks we have (and an important corollary to appreciating God and purifying ourselves for Him, which is also the essential purpose of ‘enjoining good and forbidding bad’) is to produce and maintain an environment that’s conducive to appreciating God and purifying ourselves for Him. This means that everything we do ought to speak to this objective, and undertaken in a way that directly leads to it. And it’s very evident that most Muslims do not (instead relying on short-term fixes or superficial approaches and arguments appropriated from wider narratives) and as a result much hasn’t positively changed or progressed.
When we don’t, then we are simply unable to to resolve such issues productively, since the atomisation of solutions (which overlooks the interconnected nature of all aspects of human life) result in superficial resolutions and not substantial rectification (islah).
And the more people atomise their approach, the more at risk they are of falling into a silo mentality and parochialism – both a plan of the devil and something God warns believers about through tales of the Children of Israel.
The brief point here is twofold:
- Keep your eye on big picture and ultimate purpose
- Don’t commit your time to silly or inconsequential issues, have something substantial to meet God with.