March 11th marks one year since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic. Almost every single aspect of our lives was impacted, including da’wah. With this shift to online, individuals and organizations reoriented themselves and NYMInk did not hesitate to pivot. Just one week after the declaration of a global pandemic, NYM released its first Life Haqq podcast episode with Dr. Syed Ibn Iqbal as the host on March 19th. The implementation was immediate, and the response was extraordinary, alhumdulilah.
The first comment on the first Life Haqq podcast from a Muslim sister:
“Excellent podcast, very informative, the humor is appropriate in this difficult time (I actually started to lol when mention of the overlooked garden section came up), I look forward to listening to all of them. May Allah swt reward you and your family for this amazing effort. May He protect us all in the trying time.
Jazak Allah Khair”
This is just one of the many comments and responses that the Life Haqq team received with this podcast. The podcast episodes have been released consistently on a weekly basis since March 19th. Dr. Syed and the team have been working continuously with outreach, research, editing and more to ensure the Life Haqq podcast can serve as a constant connection to the da’wah and Ummah in this critical time. The podcast series has covered ongoing current events and issues, providing the perspective of a Muslim using imaan-based thinking. Additionally, the online nature of the podcast has allowed Dr. Syed to have conversations with many guests and shuyookh around the world, including Shaykh Mohamed Yaffa from Halifax, Imam Siraj Wahhaj from New York, and Shaykh Abu Adnan from Australia. Life Haqq continues to expand with its content and resources, and all episodes are currently available on YouTube, Apple, Spotify and Google podcasts.
In addition to starting the Life Haqq podcast, NYM has continued to flourish with communities across Western Canada, including Muslim Students Associations (MSAs). In October 2020, NYM hosted a 2-day MSA Survival Guide Seminar (Pandemic Edition), in collaboration with Canadian Muslim Chaplain Organization (CMCO), for 12 universities across Canada. This MSA training event provided a platform for (MSAs) to connect with one another virtually across the country. It also provided MSAs with resources and informative presentations from experienced individuals who have 10 years of experience in professional MSA and community dawah work.
While hosting new programs and initiatives, like the MSA Seminar and Life Haqq, NYM has also continued to with its additional existing programs and initiatives online. This has included increasing engagement across social media platforms including Twitter, IG, FB and using these platforms effectively for da’wah. This has also included increasing the release of articles and producing beneficial written works by our NYM team. Additionally, with NYM continues to hold weekly Sunday Ilm Circles that have been taking place online for over 10 years. NYM Ilm Circle students login from across Canada every week to gain knowledge that will ultimately benefit in this life and the next, inshaAllah. The importance of consistency with the NYM Ilm Circles is evident as seeking knowledge is vital in our deen.
The Prophet (SAWS) said: “Whoever follows a path in pursuit of knowledge, Allah makes his way easy to paradise.” [Bukhari]
Camp Sunnah 2020 was also a major flagship event for NYM this year as this was its 15th annual year taking place. There were concerns about COVID-19 preventing the leadership camp from taking place, but alhumdulillah by the will of Allah (SWT) and the correct precautions in place, Camp Sunnah took place in August 2020. The theme for this year’s Camp Sunnah was “A Pandemic Overcome With Beautiful Patience.” With increased efforts from the few blessed brothers and sisters who had the opportunity to attend, the NYM team was also able to produce an inspiring and uplifting Camp Sunnah documentary that premiered on the Life Haqq podcast.
One of the comments on the Camp Sunnah documentary reads:
“What an epic video! Seriously this is unbelievably amazing. I need to rewatch this a few more times at least. SubhanAllah I have goosebumps from such powerful lessons shared by all, especially Dr. Syed. I am definitely motivated to “move the rock” and revitalize my mission for Islam and to serve this precious Ummah of ours for the sake of Allah (swt). Camp Sunnah seems like a truly special project that I’ve never seen before, may the brothers and sisters who are working in these efforts be granted barakah to continue with ihsaan. SubhanAllah I’m just so impressed, motivated, and inspired… especially towards beautiful patience on the path of Dawah and helping others through selfless acts for the sake of Allah (swt)..”
With the Qu’ra and Sunnah at the roots of all its efforts, NYM continues to strive in these unprecedented times with these many programs created by the Ummah for the Ummah. However, these programs and initiatives cannot persist on their own. To continue to impact and benefit Muslims, these NYM efforts need the support of our community. In the difficult times of this pandemic, we must continue to enjoin good and forbid evil as an Ummah, even if the platforms we are using are not what we are used to. The da’wah never stops and neither should support for those on Sirat-al-Mustaqim. How will you support the da’awh movement during this pandemic?
Abu Huraira reported that the the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) said, “Whoever calls to guidance will have a reward similar to those who follow him, without detracting from their rewards at all. Whoever calls to misguidance will have sin upon him similar to those who follow him, without detracting from their sins at all.” [Sahih Muslim]