“What is Hijrah?” Email Warns of Islamic Invasion Through Migration-Truth! & Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
A forwarded email asks readers “What is Hijrah?” and goes on to explain that hijrah is the Islamic concept of invasion through migration.
The “What is Hijrah?” forwarded email that began appearing in inboxes in mid-February 2017 oversimplifies the definition of “hijrah,” making both truthful and fictional claims in the process.
Hijrah does not specifically refer to when “large scale mass migrations become invasions” in the Islamic faith, as the email claims. Rather, the general term “hijrah” refers to leaving a place of persecution to seek sanctuary, freedom or refuge.
More specifically, “hijrah” has been used to describe migrating away from an area of Muslim non-believers and toward areas with predominately Muslim populations. The transition has historically marked moving away from “a simple Islamic group of believers, to being the Islamic nation” with Prophet Mohammad’s “hijrah” from Mecca to Madinah, a paper published by the International Islamic University of Malaysia explains.
Ibrahim B. Syed, the president of the Islamic Research Foundation International, explains that the Prophet Muhammad’s hijrah is viewed by Muslims one of the most important events in human history. It marked a transition from a position of weakness in which Muslims where “humiliated, tortured and killed” to a position of strength:
Hijrah was one of the most important events in the history of Islam. It is for this reason `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) adopted Hijrah date to calculate years. Muslims chose Hijrah as the focal point to reckon their chronology. In physical terms, Hijrah was a journey between two cities about 200 miles apart, but in its grand significance it marked the beginning of an era, a civilization, a culture and a history for the whole mankind. Islam progressed not only from the physical Hijrah, but because Muslims took Hijrah seriously in all its aspects and dimensions.
When the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) made the Hijrah from Makkah to Madinah, he did not just transfer his residence or took shelter in another city, but as soon as he arrived in Madinah he began the transformation of that city in every aspect.
Historically, it’s true that hijrah has dealt generally with mass migrations of Muslim populations. However, the term has taken on new meaning in modern practice, the paper published by the International Islamic University of Malaysia explains:
Hijrah is an obligatory duty of every individual Muslim. However, to perform Hijrah in nowadays is much more difficult compared to old days. Now, people have to get permission to get into one country by providing passport. So, if the country turn down to receive the migrant, meaning that they have no choice but to get back to their own country. Thus, they cannot perform Hijrah. So, whoever is able to make Hijrah with no difficulties and obstacles then he is obligated to do that.
However, there is no one country can be called Islamic country. Today we have countries which had been under the rules of Islam, countries when Muslim do not implement the
Shari‟ah and Muslim countries which are under occupation such as Iraq and Afghanistan. So what can be concluded is there are no places for Muslims to make Hijrah.
In modern practice, the paper continues, Muslims have been encouraged to practice hijrah within in their own hometowns, gathering with members of their local Muslim communities.
In conclusion, the “What is Hijrah?” email includes some accurate details about the historical basis of the term “hijrah” and its links to migration. However, the claim that “hijrah” refers to “large scale mass migrations become invasion” is an over simplification, especially given its modern practice. Given all that, we’re calling “What is Hijrah?” both truth and fiction.