Her father is forcing her to attend gatherings in which there are innovations (bid’ah). How should she behave with him?
When reading this letter, although we feel sad about what is mentioned in it, we feel happy when we read of this sister’s common sense, intelligence and good following of the Sunnah, and that she is upset at the presence of bid’ah and she is afraid of falling into sin by disobeying her father who is telling her to go to the place where these innovations are practised. She is also thinking of leaving home but she is worried about her brother and sister and is afraid that she will be going against sharee’ah if she does not have a mahram with her. All of this, and she is a new Muslim. We ask Allaah by His names and attributes to make her and her siblings steadfast in adhering to the truth, and guide her family to follow the Sunnah.
We say to the sister who is asking this question:
1. Undoubtedly attending these gatherings with their innovations and sins is regarded as something that is contrary to sharee’ah. Those innovators are not content with merely mentioning the names of Allaah in song and dance, rather they had added other sins, namely failing to offer the prayers on time. This indicates that their claim that they are worshipping Allaah and drawing close to Him is false. If they were sincere in their desire to draw close to Him, they would worship in the ways that He has prescribed, and they would not miss the prayer, which is the greatest practical pillar of Islam. The texts of the Qur’aan and Sunnah issue stern warnings to those who do not offer the prayer on time and those who neglect the prayer.
2. It is well known in sharee’ah that attending such gatherings incurs a great deal of sin and leads to many negative consequences, but there may be some interest to be served by delaying one’s refusal to go, because that delay may bring benefits and ward off harms.
3. One of the interests served by your continuing to go now is taking care of your brother and sister and making sure that there is someone with them who can guide them and explain to them what is wrong with these actions. Another interest that will be served is making sure that your non-attendance will not lead to your father throwing you out of the house, which is something that would lead to many evils and bad consequences, the extent of which no one knows but Allaah, especially in the country where you live and even in other countries.
4. We think that you could continue to go, but go as little as you can, and make up some excuses that will be acceptable to your father for not going, as well as trying hard to bring in wise people of Ahl al-Sunnah who can explain the truth to your father.
5. A person such as you will not be deceived, in sha Allaah, by what these ignorant innovators are doing. Neverthless we advise you to protect your faith by doing acts of worship and increasing your knowledge by reading and studying the books of Ahl al-Sunnah. This will be beneficial for you. And ask trustworthy people of Ahl al-Sunnah about everything that is not clear to you, and remember that you have to keep advising and teaching and guiding your siblings. You should also try to influence some of the other girls who attend these gatherings and call them to the truth and the right path.
6. If you go there, we advise you to avoid these gatherings as much as you can, by sitting with the women in a separate room far away from these innovations and deviations. Be the last to enter and the first to leave, as much as you can.
7. We advise you to sit with your father and discuss with him what he is telling you to do, and to try to convince him about these innovators. You are at an age where you can do that with him. And you have enough knowledge to convince him in sha Allaah.
8. Always pray for your father and advise him, and treat him well all the time, for “there is no kindness in a thing but it adorns it, and it is not taken away from a thing but it makes it defective” as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said.
We ask Allaah to help you to do that which He loves and which pleases Him, and to make you steadfast in adhering to the truth, and to guide your father to the truth.
And Allaah is the Source of strength.