The Art of ‘Muslimbooking’: 5 tips to make the best of Facebook as a Muslim (Part 1)
If you think social media is going to be gone anytime soon, think again dear friend! Experts say that in the next 25 years, social media is only going to become extremely powerful than it is today. So, the earlier you learn how to use it to your advantage, the better for you.
But wait a minute…You’re Muslim (Yikes!). Can you use social media? Why of course yes! The most important aspect is realising that being Muslim requires that your actions on Social Media are guided by what you call yourself…”a Muslim”. For our first part of the intended series, let’s limit our focus on Facebook. Here are five personally inspired tips I believe can make you use Facebook to stand out from the crowd and most importantly, make you please Allah by being of service to humanity. Happy reading!
1. Respond to posts that you have been tagged in: Being tagged in a post is a sort of invitation. Usually your friends will tag you in a post because they believe your view matters to the content of the post. If it is a post that seeks your opinion on a matter to which you can respond, do so. I personally see this as using the intellectual ability Allah has blessed you with to contribute to the development of society. It also shows respect to the person who has tagged you. Treat irrelevant tags like you would treat the plague!
2.‘Make friends, not just Muslims’: Open your space to people who have different perspectives about life that you can learn from. Such perspectives broaden your mind’s view of the world and make you think deep about your own views. Wisdom and knowledge do not lodge only in the minds of Muslims. Be sure though, to check through the profile of people (what they post, what they write) before you send or accept a request.
3. Don’t just like!: In these days of social media, it’s not just your words that can make you a hypocrite. The fact that your friend put out a post doesn’t mean you should react to it. ‘Like’ only what resonates with you as a Muslim, as well as your personal values. Simply put, ‘like’ what you know you can defend and agree with. And that is as true for liking posts as it is for sharing them. At the end of the day, you are your best judge. Remember that the fingers you use to ‘like’ posts are the same fingers that you place on the floor as you pray. They sure will bear witness to your actions.
4. Don’t just type. Practice ‘Educative Communication’: (Okay, so I just made that term up…hehe). Facebook gives you the chance to communicate with words, videos and pictures. Choose to spell correctly and use good grammar. Never underestimate the way you write. People choose to use shorthand form of writing, that’s fine. You are ‘You’, not people. Use your platform to teach others how to write well. If Islam values and rewards the act of teaching, I believe it doesn’t exempt this indirect form of teaching either.
5. Not every ‘click’ needs to be seen: Not every moment of your life deserves public attention. Learn to keep a sense of mystery around your life. If you should use pictures or videos, let them work for you, i.e. let them indirectly tell a story of what you stand for as a person; more so, as a Muslim. This is not bragging…it’s called Branding. This should be strategically done though. It’s nice to keep just a few activities you do out of the limelight which serves as a secret deed you do to please Allah (it’s this balance many aren’t able to strike). And no, it isn’t bad to have your pictures and videos out there (regardless of your gender). What is most important is for you to observe the Islamic rules on dress in relation to public appearances to the best of your ability (which of course, not just goes for women, but for men as well).
So, there you have it; Your first five tips. Hope you find them helpful. Expect the next five tips quite soon, in shaa Allah!
Khadijah Abdul Samed