All the Prophets, the Ashâb-i kirâm, the Tâbi’în and the Salaf-i sâlihîn ‘radiy-Allâhu anhum ajma’în’ strove very much to perform Amr-i ma’rûf and Nahy-i munkar. They suffered much torment and torture for this cause. If it were good in our religion not to interfere with anybody, it would not have been said that it was a symptom of îmân for the heart to refuse a sin. Indeed, it is declared in the hadîth: “Prevent the sinner from sinning with your hand. If you are unable to do it, prevent him through words. If you cannot do it either, dislike it [the sin] through the heart! And this is the lowest grade of îmân.” If it were good not to perform Amr-i ma’rûf, the worshipper who would not do Amr-i ma’rûf to a sinning tribe would not be destroyed together with them. As a matter of fact, it is declared in a hadith: “Allâhu ta’âlâ commanded Hadrat Jabraîl to sink a city into the earth. Jabraîl said, ‘O Allah! A born slave of Thine in that city has not disobeyed Thee even for a moment. He has always obeyed and worshipped Thee; ‘Sink him, too! His face never changed when he saw sinners’.”
Amr-i ma’rûf can be carried out in two ways. One is through speaking, writing and every means of communication. However, with this method, fitna may occur if one has an insufficient amount of knowledge, or if disrespect is shown to the people being addressed, or to their traditions or laws. The other approach is to be an exemplary person in your behavior by adopting the superior morality of Islam. Presently a smiling face, a friendly manner, obeying the laws, paying your taxes and debts, and not despising anyone or violating anyone’s property rights or chastity is a most efficient and beneficial method of teaching Islam to others. For this reason, it is said that “lisân-ul-hâl antaqu min lisân-il-qâl” which means the language of the body and behaviour, without making use of words, is superior to languge itself.
Therefore, to live in accordance with the superior morality of Islam is the best way to perform Amr-i ma’rûf and Nahy-i-munkar. It is to carry out an important fard; it is to perform an ibâdât. Tasawwuf is the way which enables man to develop the ikhlâs needed in worshipping his Creator, and in enhancing the good morals necessary in his dealings with human beings. This way is taught by a murshid-i kâmil. Every science has its own specialists. Man learns a specific branch of science from its specialist. The specialist of the knowledge of tasawwuf is the one who is a Murshid-i kâmil. Any person who is simply a specialist in any branch of science is not called a Murshid-i kâmil.