How to Channel Your Anger For Palestine | Blog

Published: October 19, 2023 • Updated: May 30, 2024

Author: Yaqeen Institute,

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ

In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

The Palestinians have been murdered twice – once by the Israeli army and once by the Western media. Our emotions are intense these days. The horrific images and exposure to propaganda have taken us on an emotional roller coaster, most often leaving us feeling rage. We are infuriated at the Zionist atrocities and misinformation campaign. We are enraged at the lack of support for our brothers and sisters. What do we do with this anger? Is it okay to be furious?
The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ embodied the pinnacle of patience, forgiveness, and noble character. His temperament was marked by restraint, yet even he would feel anger for the sake of Allah.

Indeed, the emotion of anger serves a divine purpose: it is a litmus test of the heart's health and a catalyst driving us toward justice.

While our faith encourages patience and forbearance, it does not always advocate for turning the other cheek in the face of oppression. There are many stories from the life of the Prophet ﷺ expressing his anger. He would stand on the mimbar, his face flushing red when individuals attempted to distort Allah's commands. In early Islam, when the Companion Umar (rA) sought wisdom from the Torah, the Prophet expressed his anger, affirming that even if Prophet Musa (as) were alive, he would be his follower. To feel nothing when injustice prevails is indicative of a dead heart.

1. Guide your anger

There are two extremes of anger. On one extreme, the total absence of anger can manifest as cowardice. After all, anger is a motivation to establish justice. Conversely, unchecked, excessive anger can devolve into tyranny.

It's within this spectrum that Muslims are urged to find a balanced position—harnessing anger for the sake of Allah and channeling it towards the establishment of justice.

When appropriately managed, anger becomes praiseworthy. Imam Al-Shafi’i commented on this, suggesting that someone who is provoked to righteous anger but remains passive is like a donkey.
To control and guide our anger:
  • Distinguish between anger for Allah and personal rage.
  • Remember the repeated Prophetic advice: "Do not get angry."
  • Perform wudu’ to help calm your mind.
  • Seek protection from Satan's influence by repeating, "a’udhu billahi min ash-shaytan ar-rajim.”
Properly managed and directed, anger can be a powerful tool in the quest for justice. But left unchecked, it can become a destructive force. As advocates for Palestine, let's ensure our anger aligns with the teachings of Islam and drives us closer to justice.

2. Become a better version of yourself

True victory comes from both internal transformation and external action. History has shown that many political movements crumble not necessarily due to external pressures, but due to internal moral failings—be it succumbing to bribery or other ethical compromises.

Our faith teaches us about unseen blessings like baraka, where outcomes aren't strictly transactional. But how can one hope for such baraka if one disregards fundamental responsibilities, like honoring parents or observing daily prayers? Our personal transgressions impede the collective efficacy of our du’a.

Externally, proactive steps aligned with our faith's teachings are paramount. Our internal spiritual work should never be an excuse to sidestep external responsibilities. Whether it's establishing new media organizations to convey the truth or other initiatives, our internal faith and external actions must work in tandem.

3. Stay grounded to prevent burnout

Advocacy is a marathon, not a sprint. Pushing ourselves endlessly without pauses can lead to burnout and inadvertently diminish our effectiveness. More so, when we're constantly drained, we risk projecting our anger onto our loved ones and those who share our mission. Achieving justice for Palestine requires consistency and longevity, and for that, we need balance. Recognizing when to intensify our efforts and when to step back for clarity momentarily is key. Such pauses can be transformative, allowing us to come back with renewed energy and perspective.
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4. Hold one another accountable

The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ emphasized the dangers of isolation, likening the lone individual to a sheep astray, vulnerable to being picked off. Numerous hadiths extol the virtues of jama’ah (community); it's within this collective that checks and balances emerge, ensuring that the group's collective strength surpasses that of its individual components. For the sake of accountability, clarity, and direction we should always run our ideas by others.
Lastly, remember that no one should navigate this journey alone. Implementing a buddy system, where friends or colleagues regularly check in on one another, can serve as a supportive network. By doing so, we remind each other of the importance of balance and the value of rest, ensuring that we're all in it for the long game.

Disclaimer: The views, opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed in these papers and articles are strictly those of the authors. Furthermore, Yaqeen does not endorse any of the personal views of the authors on any platform. Our team is diverse on all fronts, allowing for constant, enriching dialogue that helps us produce high-quality research.