We Muslims should be conduits to convey the truth of Islam, and not let our own Nafs get in the way of this conveyance. We know the Ayah in Surah al-Israa’ (in translation): ‘Say, the truth has come and falsehood is vanished’. Besides, the world is being polarized into Western and Islamic civilizations/worldviews, we should facilitate the choice for those who are sincere in finding the truth, and put no artificial barriers to their search.
Consider, the Quraysh respected the sanctity of the Ka’bah so much that they made an announcement to the effect of not accepting anything but Halaal money for the reconstruction of the Ka’bah. And yet we see lots of indifference and apathy by the Muslims of today when in the presence of the Ka’bah and the Masjid al-Haraam.
If one wishes to pass a judgment on something, he has to thoroughly know the truth of the situation before him. This is an issue that many Muslims, even scholars, might fail to address properly, and sometimes it is not their fault directly, but rather that too much expectation is placed on them (for example, expecting the Faqeeh to give an all-encompassing refutation or explanation of a biological or chemistry based topic), this is unrealistic to expect from them, but this situation occurs routinely in the Muslim world, many a times with embarrassing results.
An important issue: When we say a Hadith is Sahih, we are also trusting someone like Imam Bukhari, Muslim (RA), etc., who passed a judgment on the chain of narrators – with regards to arguments with sectarians, they cannot simply start placing one Hadith against another, since the whole issue is that we have trusted scholars like Bukhari, Tirmidhi, Muslim (RA), and so forth. If the sectarians wish to argue about authenticity with true sincerity, the first step is to accept the judgment and scholarship value of these scholars, then we can start to discuss, it is this simple. [There will be a need to bring up the sectarian’s own method and subject it to strict critique, but to begin with, we should not fall for this selective polemical-sectarian tactic].
The Hadeeth of Jibreel is unique, in that it is as if the Sanad of this narration goes back to the Prophet (ﷺ) and to Jibril (AS) as well, so it is stronger than any other chain in this regard. Also, we should consider the spiritual maturity of the Companions that they were able to bear seeing an angel, albeit in a human form. Remember the story of the Prophet (ﷺ) when the first revelation came to him and the tremendous experience in that, yet fast-forward years later, and in the Madinan period, some of the Companions themselves can see the Angel of Revelation (AS).
An example is mentioned of Mauritania, they are Bedouins, yet some of the most civilized people on Earth. The moral is that if we take Islam away from a people like that, they are an insignificant dot on the face of the Earth, and totally forgotten by all – but with Islam they have produced well-known scholars.
One needs to see those living examples who have reached the end of the path, of those who are living at a higher level of existence, their hearts connected fully with Allah even if their outside is fully engaged with the world. Otherwise, someone might think that Islam is only about rules, or that love has no place in Islam, yet this is wrong.