Practical Muslim Response to the Surge of COVID-19

A Moment with Our Prophet, Muhammad (S)

By Imam Zijad Delic

Day 213: Practical Muslim Response to the Surge of COVID-19

Narrated by Abu Salama (r) that our Prophet (S) instructed believers: “Not to mix the sick person with the healthy one.”

أَنْ لاَ يُورِدُ مُمْرِضٌ عَلَى مُصِحٍّ

Source: Muslim

Transliteration: “An La Yuridu Mumridun ‘Ala Musihh.”

After almost fourteen months since we realized that the new virus surfaced among us, globally and nationally, we are still struggling, and outbreaks are daily reality and news.

As coronavirus spikes in Canada and globally, Canadian Muslims share with other Canadians and human brothers and sisters across the globe, feelings of fear and hope in this challenging time.

We also pray in this blessed month of Ramadan that this fear and hopelessness will change soon, Insha Allah.

We, Canadian Muslims stand together in this state of the challenge and feel obliged to cooperate with others for the common good and pray for ourselves and others.

As people of faiths, we must hear the calls from our faith sources and the scholars, medical experts and the policy makers of all three levels of Canadian government and abide by the rules.

We must also realize at this challenging time, that our faith demands from us the following:

  1. We do our share in preventing the Covid-19 spread by taking care of our Taharah (cleanliness) because cleanliness is loved by the Almighty God (Qur’an 2:222) and it is a half of our faith, as the Messenger Muhammad (S) instructed us. (Muslim)

عَنْ أَبِي مَالِكٍ الأَشْعَرِيِّ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ الطُّهُورُ شَطْرُ الإِيمَانِ

And when we take care of cleanliness of our body, we would positively impact on our health and thus health of others.

  1. To protect our health, because health is one of the greatest blessings that we enjoy, second to our faith. (Tirmizi)

Our role-model Mustafa (S) told us: “For the believers, those who are Go—conscious, their health is much greater than their wealth.” (Ibn Majah, Al Hakim, Ahmed)

وَالصِّحَّةُ لِمَنِ اتَّقَى خَيْرٌ مِنَ الْغِنَ

  1. To never allow ourselves to get harmed or cause harm to others such as our family members, neighbors, coworkers, friends or people we may know or not, as our Prophet (S) guided us, as narrated by ِIbn Abbas (r): “There should neither be harming (of others without cause), nor reciprocating harm (between two parties).” (Ahmed, Ibn Majah)

وَعَنْ اِبْنِ عَبَّاسٍ ‏رَضِيَ اَللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا‏- قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اَللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لَا ضَرَرَ وَلَا ضِرَارَ

  1. We must avoid mixing with people if we are sick or if we have any of the symptoms/signs of the sickness. It was narrated by Abu Salama (r) that our Prophet (S) instructed believers: “Not to mix the sick person with the healthy one.” (Muslim)

أَنْ لاَ يُورِدُ مُمْرِضٌ عَلَى مُصِحٍّ

  1. We must avoid, if we are afflicted with any disease or we have symptoms of it, to leave our place of residence and enter another region.

Our Prophet (S) said this unique statement that is very much supported by medical experts today: “If you hear of an outbreak of plague in a land, do not enter it; but if the plague breaks out in a place while you are in it, do not leave that place.” (Bukhari)

حَدَّثَنَا حَفْصُ بْنُ عُمَرَ، حَدَّثَنَا شُعْبَةُ، قَالَ أَخْبَرَنِي حَبِيبُ بْنُ أَبِي ثَابِتٍ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ بْنَ سَعْدٍ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أُسَامَةَ بْنَ زَيْدٍ، يُحَدِّثُ سَعْدًا عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ “‏ إِذَا سَمِعْتُمْ بِالطَّاعُونِ بِأَرْضٍ فَلاَ تَدْخُلُوهَا، وَإِذَا وَقَعَ بِأَرْضٍ وَأَنْتُمْ بِهَا فَلاَ تَخْرُجُوا مِنْهَا

  1. If we are in any way afflicted with a disease, we must treat ourselves medically, besides taking precautions and putting trust in the Creator, as in the Hadith Sahih: “The desert Arabs came from here and there. They asked: Messenger of Allah (S), should we make use of medical treatment? He replied: “Make use of medical treatment.” (Abu Dawud)

عَنْ أُسَامَةَ بْنِ شَرِيكٍ..ُ فَجَاءَ الأَعْرَابُ مِنْ هَا هُنَا وَهَا هُنَا فَقَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَنَتَدَاوَى فَقَالَ ‏ “‏ تَدَاوَوْا

  1. Canadian Muslim medical professionals, together with other medical experts, nationally and globally, must work on finding the remedy for the coronavirus pandemic.

Our Prophet Muhammad (S) encouraged us to do so as in the same hadith: “The desert Arabs then came from here and there. They asked: Messenger of Allah, should we make use of medical treatment? He replied: Make use of medical treatment, for Allah has not made a disease without appointing a remedy for it, with the exception of one disease, namely old age.” (Abu Dawud)

عَنْ أُسَامَةَ بْنِ شَرِيكٍ، قَالَ أَتَيْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم وَأَصْحَابُهُ كَأَنَّمَا عَلَى رُءُوسِهِمُ الطَّيْرُ فَسَلَّمْتُ ثُمَّ قَعَدْتُ فَجَاءَ الأَعْرَابُ مِنْ هَا هُنَا وَهَا هُنَا فَقَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَنَتَدَاوَى فَقَالَ ‏ تَدَاوَوْا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لَمْ يَضَعْ دَاءً إِلاَّ وَضَعَ لَهُ دَوَاءً غَيْرَ دَاءٍ وَاحِدٍ الْهَرَمُ

  1. We must take seriously the advice, recommendations of the medical professional and experts and abide by them.
  2. We also must abide by all policies established by all three levels of the government related to the coronavirus pandemic.
  3. And we also need to raise our hands to the Almighty and ask him to save us and others from the pandemic.

Narrated by Aban ibn Uthman (r) that he heard the Prophet (S) saying: “A person will not be harmed by anything if he says every morning and evening 3 times, ‘Bismillahilladhi La Yadurru Ma’asmihi Shay’un Fil Ardi Wa La Fis Sama’I Wa Huwas Sami’ul ‘Alaim.” In the Name of Allah by whose Name nothing in the earth or the heaven is harmed. He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.'” (Al Adabul Mufrad)

عَنْ أَبَانَ بْنِ عُثْمَانَ قَالَ‏:‏ سَمِعْتُ عُثْمَانَ قَالَ‏:‏ سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ‏:‏ مَنْ قَالَ صَبَاحَ كُلِّ يَوْمٍ، وَمَسَاءَ كُلِّ لَيْلَةٍ، ثَلاَثًا ثَلاَثًا‏:‏ بِسْمِ اللهِ الَّذِي لاَ يَضُرُّ مَعَ اسْمِهِ شَيْءٌ فِي الأَرْضِ وَلاَ فِي السَّمَاءِ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ، لَمْ يَضُرَّهُ شَيْءٌ‏.

And this is not only our social obligation but a religious one as well.

The bottom-line is that Muslim response to COVID-19 is very much compatible with the general Canadian medical and governmental responses to this pandemic.

So, when the national policies suggest that citizens wash their hands regularly, we Muslims understand that, as our Taharah is a part of our faith.

When the governmental rules ask of us to stay at home and not mix with people if we have any of the COVID-19 symptoms, our faith demands that of us as well.

When the Government issue a statement that all gatherings are cancelled, that means we do not gather and go against the rule.

When the Government and medical experts’ advice social distancing and masks, then we all follow the rule.

When the Government asks us to avoid travels, then we abide the rule.

As Muslims, we have to go beyond these policies and be an example to others.

By following the established policies and the rules found in our faith sources and issued by our medical experts and policy makers, we will help ourselves and others, Insha Allah, and reduce the spread of the virus.

Ya Rabb! Help us to be an example in Canada, on individual or communal levels, in doing preventative measures regarding the COVID-19 by which we will help ourselves, others and the nation!

Allahumma Amin!