One brother from this blog asked the following questions about the old salafi movement:
How many STABLE islamic schools have been established by SALAFIS in the US?
How many grave yards have been established by the Salafi movement in the US?
How many medical clinics established by Salafis in the US?
How many salafi relief organizations in the US?
Any ’salafi’ soup kitchens or food banks in the US of note?
What have this movement really done?
First of all I want to state that I was never a part of the clique of brothers that collectively called themselves ‘the salafis‘, and I can appreciate what the brother above is saying as it was one of the pitfalls of that movement – extreme isolation, disengagement from society and disregard for the immediate world around them. It was strange to many Muslims to see these brothers try to tear down the good that other Muslims were doing in establishing masjids, muslim graveyards, and zakat funds, while they were presenting no viable alternative. However, I can not say that that movement was totally devoid of any good.
While they failed to established any of the above mentioned items in the height of their movement, I think that we can thank the 1990’s Salafi Movement for bringing a heightened awareness of matters of aqeedah -which is a good thing. However their mistake was to declare that work in others areas was somehow ‘blameworthy’ and this is one factor that led to the movement’s decline. I found it to be totally asinine for brothers from crime and drug infested neighborhoods to be debating the merits (or lack thereof) of this and that ruler from Muslim countries, while their families and neighborhoods were completely ignored all in the name of righteousness.
There are many groups of Muslims that have done much good, but at the same time we must have the correct aqeedah. This is the balanced way. We do not have to belong to a small clique of brothers that attend the same conferences with the same telelinks and the same speakers. I hope that moving past this gang-like type of thinking