In Islam, practicing da`wah or Islamic call is not limited to a certain time or geographical area. Every one of us can be a good practicing da`iyah in his own work, community, school, or company without incurring the burden of traveling abroad for four months or less while neglecting his marital duties and parting from his family.
Dr. Sano Koutoub Moustapha, professor of fiqh and its principles, International Islamic University, Malaysia, states the following: There is no doubt that all Muslims are invited to practice da`wah to their best ability. Da`wah is a duty of every single Muslim. However, there is no harm in going out to different parts of the world for the sake of da`wahwith the condition that one should not neglect one’s other obligations such as taking care of the family and educating the kids. Thus, all these activities are considered as da`wah. In other words, one should not abandon one’s family and travel for days under the name of da`wah. One should know that looking after family is another form of obligatory da`wah
This is said in the Qur’an: “O ye who believe! Ward off from yourselves and your families a Fire whereof the fuel is men and stones, over which are set angels strong, severe, who resist not Allah in that which He commandeth them, but do that which they are commanded.” (At-Tahrim: 6)
Therefore, for those who wish to go out to perform da`wah they have to make sure that they are not neglecting their marital duties nor are they giving less attention to the needs of their wives.
Certainly, their wives must agree on this, meaning that if they are married, they must bring along their wives because four months is too long to be away from the wife unless she herself accepts it without being forced to do so. All in all, we should adhere to the teachings and the practices of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) while making da`wah. In these teachings, there is nothing calling upon Muslims to abandon their worldly duties for the sake of da`wah, but they have to practice da`wah in their daily lives. Meaning, da`wah should always be a part of whatever they are doing. It is unfortunate to learn that many Muslims neglect their marital obligations and relations with their spouses by going out for days and months in the name of da`wah.
Islam doesn’t recommend such an attitude and behaviour. It stands firm for the rights of family, wife, and children, and it also calls upon all Muslims to start their da`wah from within before going out to others. Allah Almighty says, “And warn thy tribe of near kindred.” (Ash-Shu`araa’: 214)