From the very beginning, women have played vital roles in the propagation of the fundamental truths of Islamic da’wah. From the sacrifices of Sumayyah (ra) to the collected ahaadeeth of ‘Aa-ishah (ra), women have been instrumental in the flourishing and spreading of the Deen. Allaah (swt) also raises the status of the daa’ies and commends them highly in the Qur’aan as He (swt) states: “Who is better in speech than the one who calls to Allaah?”
Da’wah to Allaah (swt) is a duty on every Muslim in every age, and in our time this da’wah is particularly important in light of the vicious attacks the enemies of Allaah (swt) are waging to remove the importance of da’wah from the hearts of Muslims.Allaah (swt) does not restrict the da’wah to men alone but refers to the entire Ummah of Muhammad (saw) when He says, “Invite to the way of your Lord (i.e. Islaam) with Hikmah (divine evidences), and argue with them in a way that is better.” (EMQ 16: 125)
Therefore, the women, just like the men should call to Allaah (swt) and command the good and forbid the evil in ways and etiquettes prescribed by the Sharee’ah.
In the time of the Messenger Muhammad (saw), women took their role as daa’iyahs seriously. It is narrated by Abu Sa’eed (ra) that the women used to approach the Prophet (saw) and say, “The men are keeping you busy and we do not get enough attention from you, would you specify a day for us?” He (saw) promised them a day to meet with them and educate them (al-Bukhaari). Furthermore, the Messenger (saw), when addressing the people used to say, “Let the one who is present convey what he has heard to the one who is absent” (al-Bukhaari). This indicates that as well as teaching the women he ordered them to spread what they had heard.
We need to look at the wider circle and realise that history bares testimony to the fact that women played a great role in conveying the Deen of Islaam. Sumayyah (ra) gave up her life when Abu Jahl killed her for embracing Islaam. She was the first Muslim, and woman martyred for the sake of her Deen. Khadeejah (ra), the first wife of Muhammad (saw), who was very rich, spent all of her money to support the Da’wah. Ummu Salamah (ra) left her husband and saw her children persecuted when she migrated. Umm Imarah (ra) fought in defence of the Prophet (saw) in the Battle of Uhud.
One must understand the emphasis of this obligation and act as a messenger for the Messenger (saw) in order to convey Islaam and not remain silent and passive, as Allaah (swt) says, “Verily, those who conceal the clear proofs, evidences and the guidance which we have sent down after We have made it clear for the people in the book, they are ones cursed by Allaah…” (EMQ 2: 159)