Published in  
June 21, 2023

The 3 Fundamental Principles (Usul al-Thalatha) | Introduction | Part 1

'The 3 Fundamental Principles' (الأصول الثلاثة وأدلّتها‎) was authored by Sheikh Muhammad Ibn Abdul Wahhab to teach Muslims the basics of Islamic belief and forms the basis to the questions that one will be asked in the grave. This is a book that has gained mass acceptance amongst the Ummah especially in the region of Hijaz and Najd. It is a relied upon book with hundreds of commentaries and the standard beginners text to begin their journey in studying Aqeedah and the Islamic sciences in general. As a student, one must always make sure to solidify our foundations before moving onto more advanced topics and texts. Jumping the gun and going straight to advanced levels is doing ourselves a disservice as we won't benefit ourselves and in reality might actually harm ourselves because of wrongly understanding and applying what is learnt.

This book is not to be confused with “Thalaathat-ul-Usul” which is another work written by Sheikh Muhammad Ibn Abdul Wahhab.

Sheikh divided the book into 5 parts:

1. The 4 Important Points  
a. Knowledge  
b. Acting upon it  
c. Teaching it  
d. Patience upon its hardships

2. The 3 Important Points (Categories of Tawheed)  
a. Tawheed of Lordship (al-Rububiyyah)
b. Tawheed of the Names and Attributes of Allah (Asma wa Sifat)
c. Tawheed of Worship (al-Uluhiyyah)

3. The Importance of studying Tawheed.  
4. The 3 Fundamental Principles (Questions of the Grave)
5. Conclusion  

Why do we need to study Tawheed?

1. It is the reason we were Created by Allah - to worship Him Alone and not commit shirk.
2. It is the key to Jannah and ultimate salvation.
3. It is a means to expiating one's sins.
4. It is a condition for any deed to be Accepted by Allah.
5. It is a means for the intercession of the Prophet.
6. It causes good deeds to increase and multiply.
7. It gives meaning to one's life.

A person studies tawheed in order to act upon it and call others to it and learns shirk in order to stay away from it and warn against its dangers.

The Three Fundamental Principles in summary are the 3 questions of the grave. They are:

1. Who is your Lord?  
2. What is your Religion?  
3. Who is your Prophet?  

When a person dies and their soul departs; they are placed in their grave. This is the first stage of the Hereafter.

It was narrated that Haani’ the freed slave of Uthman ibn Affan said: when ‘Uthman ibn Affan stood by a grave he would weep until his beard became wet. It was said to him, “You remember Paradise and Hell and you do not weep, but you weep because of this?” He said, “The Messenger of Allah said: ‘The grave is the first of the stages of the Hereafter; whoever is saved from it, whatever comes afterwards will be easier  for him, but if he is not saved from it, what comes afterwards will be worse for him.’” [Tirmidhi]

What is the basis for these questions?

It was narrated that al-Bara’ said: We went out with the Messenger of Allah for the funeral of a man from among the Ansar. We came to the grave and when (the deceased) was placed in the lahd, the Messenger of Allah sat down and we sat around him, as if there were birds on our heads (i.e., quiet and still). In his hand he had a stick with which he was scratching the ground. Then he raised his head and said, “Seek refuge with Allah from the torment of the grave”, two or three times.

Then he said, “When the believing slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with white faces like the sun, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. They bring with them shrouds from Paradise and perfumes from Paradise. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O good soul, come forth to forgiveness from Allah and His pleasure.’ Then it comes out easily like a drop of water from the the mouth of a water-skin. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that shroud with that perfume, and there comes from it a fragrance like the finest musk on the face of the earth. Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this good soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the best names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven. They ask for it to be opened to them and it is opened, and (the soul) is welcomed and accompanied to the next heaven by those who are closest to Allaah, until they reach the seventh heaven. Then Allah says: ‘Record the book of My slave in ‘Illiyoon in the seventh heaven, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’

So his soul is returned to his body and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Allah.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘My religion is Islam.’ They say, ‘Who is this man who was sent among you?’ He says, ‘He is the Messenger of Allah.’ They say, ‘What did you do?’ He says, ‘I read the Book of Allah and I believed in it.’ Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘My slave has spoken the truth, so prepare for him a bed from Paradise and clothe him from Paradise, and open for him a gate to Paradise.’ Then there comes to him some of its fragrance, and his grave is made wide, as far as he can see. Then there comes to him a man with a handsome face and handsome clothes, and a good fragrance, who says, ‘Receive the glad tidings that will bring you joy this day.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which brings glad tidings.’ He says, ‘I am your righteous deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, hasten the Hour so that I may return to my family and my wealth.’

But when the disbelieving slave is about to depart this world and enter the Hereafter, there come down to him from heaven angels with black faces, bringing sackcloth, and they sit around him as far as the eye can see. Then the Angel of Death comes and sits by his head, and he says, ‘O evil soul, come forth to the wrath of Allaah and His anger.’ Then his soul disperses inside his body, then comes out cutting the veins and nerves, like a skewer passing through wet wool. When he seizes it, they do not leave it in his hand for an instant before they take it and put it in that sackcloth, and there comes from it a stench like the foulest stench of a dead body on the face of the earth. Then they ascend and they do not pass by any group of angels but they say, ‘Who is this evil soul?’ and they say, ‘It is So and so the son of So and so, calling him by the worst names by which he was known in this world, until they reach the lowest heaven. They ask for it to be opened to them and it is not opened.” Then the Messenger of Allaah recited:

“for them the gates of heaven will not be opened, and they will not enter Paradise until the camel goes through the eye of the needle” [Surah al-A’raaf, 40]

He said: “Then Allah says, ‘Record the book of My slave in Sijjeen in the lowest earth, and return him to the earth, for from it I created them, to it I will return them and from it I will bring them forth once again.’ So his soul is cast down.”  Then the Messenger of Allah recited the verse:

“and whoever assigns partners to Allaah, it is as if he had fallen from the sky, and the birds had snatched him, or the wind had thrown him to a far off place” [Surah al-Hajj, 31]

He said: “Then his soul is returned to his body, and there come to him two angels who make him sit up and they say to him, ‘Who is your Lord?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ They say, ‘What is your religion?’ He says, ‘Oh, oh, I don’t know.’ Then a voice calls out from heaven, ‘Prepare for him a bed from Hell and clothe him from Hell, and open for him a gate to Hell.’ Then there comes to him some of its heat and hot winds, and his grave is constricted and compresses him until his ribs interlock. Then there comes to him a man with an ugly face and ugly clothes, and a foul stench, who says, ‘Receive the bad news, this is the day that you were promised.’ He says, ‘Who are you? Your face is a face which forebodes evil.’ He says, ‘I am your evil deeds.’ He says, ‘O Lord, do not let the Hour come, do not let the Hour come.’” [Ahmad and Abu Dawud]

Sheikh Salih al-Fawzan said, "So these are called Usul because other than it, from the affairs of the religion, are built upon them. Due to this, they are called Usull; because the matter of the religion is built upon them and all of the religion revolves around these three principles."

Beginning of Book

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy.

The reason the author begins with the Name of Allah:

1. It is following the example of the Book of Allah as well as the Prophets who began their sermons and communications with the basmalah. A very famous letter which the Prophet sent to Hercules inviting him to Islam, begins with it. The treaty of Hudaibiyah begins with it as written by Ali.

2. Following the example of the righteous predecessors from the scholars of Islam and how they authored their books

3. Seeking blessings or increase in goodness from the blessed Name of Allah.  

اعْلمْ رَحِمَكَ اللهُ أَنَّهُ يَجِبُ عَلَيْنَا تَعَلُّمُ أَرْبَع مَسَائِلَ:
المسألة الأُولَى: الْعِلْمُ: وَهُوَ مَعْرِفَةُ اللهِ، وَمَعْرِفَةُ نَبِيِّهِ ـ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ـ، وَمَعْرِفَةُ دِينِ الإِسْلامِ بالأَدِلَّةِ.

Know, may Allah have mercy on you, that we are obligated to learn 4 matters:

First: Knowledge, which means: awareness of Allah, awareness of His Prophet, and awareness of the Religion of Islam, based on evidences.

The author begins by making dua for the student of knowledge. This teaches us the manner in which should teach. It also shows us that we should make dua for the one we are advising or teaching as this is the Sunnah of the Prophet. We should use good words and manners so that it soften their hearts towards your message. The dua is because guidance is in the hands of Allah alone and all that we do is to just plant the seed.

He says that learning these matters is wajib which means an obligation upon a person. A person is rewarded for doing such actions and punished if they are not done. In this regard, seeking knowledge is wajib al-ayni meaning that it is an individual obligation.


Knowledge can be defined as:

العلم : إدراك الشيء على ما هو عليه إدراكاً جازماً لاشك فيه

Ilm (Knowledge) is to know something as per its true nature with utmost surety.

Knowledge refers to al-‘Ilm ash-Shar‘i (the legislated Islamic knowledge), because that is what it is obligatory to learn, and these matters are obligatory to learn upon every Muslim, male or female. When it comes to Ilm, it should not be hear-say but rather it should be based on conviction. How much knowledge should a person gather? The Sheikh stipulates the minimum knowledge which a Muslim needs to attain: knowledge of Allah, His Messenger and His Deen with its respective evidences.

Why does a person need this? Allah tells us in the Quran:

وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ

And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me. [Surah adh-Dhariyat, 56]

This shows that, one clearly cannot worship Allah as He deserves unless we have knowledge regarding Him.

The first of them: that which it is obligatory upon all individuals to learn, such that there is no excuse for anyone to be ignorant of it, and it is that which is such that the religion cannot be correctly established except with it, such as the five pillars of Islam which are the Two Testifications, and the establishment of the Prayer, and the giving of the Zakat, and the fast of Ramadan, and Hajj to the sacred House of Allaah. It is not permissible for the Muslim to be ignorant of that, rather he must learn it.

Since learning the meaning of the Two Testifications, is to learn the Aqeedah (creed and belief), so the Muslim learns the creed and belief in order to act upon it, and he learns whatever opposes it in order to keep away from it – this is what is contained in the Two Testifications.

As for the knowledge of the Deen, Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal beautifully remarked as quoted by al-Hafidh Ibn al-Qayyim: “People are more in need of knowledge than food and drink because they only need food and drink once or twice a day – but they need knowledge with every breath they take…” [Dar Miftah al-Sa`ada]

It is reported from Abdullah bin Ahmad bin Hanbal that he asked his father, whether it is obligatory upon a man to seek knowledge. He replied: “As for [the knowledge] through which he can uphold his prayers, and other matters of his religion like fasting, Zakah – and he mentioned the other main aspects of the religion – then a man must know about that.”

The second category from the categories of knowledge, is that which is additional to that, from the legislated rulings which the Ummah together has need of, and it may be the case that not every individual has a need of it, such as the rulings of trading, and the rulings of dealing and transactions, and the rulings of religious endowments, and laws of inheritance and bequests and the rulings of marriages, and the rulings relating to crimes. These are essential for the Ummah. However it is not obligatory upon every individual from the Ummah that he has to learn it. Rather, if these things are learnt by sufficient number of scholars, such that what is required is attained, then that will suffice so that they can fulfill the need of the Muslims for legal judgments and for religious verdicts and for teaching and other than this. This is called Waajib al-Kifayah (the communal obligation), such that if a sufficient number of people carry it out, then sin falls away from the rest, and if all of them leave it, then they will all be sinful.

However, whoever died and he was ignorant of al-‘ilm ash-shar‘ee the legislated (islaamic) knowledge, particularly essential knowledge, then he will be asked about it on the Day of Resurrection, “Why didn’t you learn? Why didn’t you ask?”.

So his saying, “Knowledge”, this is the legislated knowledge that is required from us as a body and as individuals, and it is knowledge and awareness of Allaah through His Names and His Attributes, and knowledge of His right upon us, which is to worship Him alone ascribing no partner to Him, so the first thing that is obligatory upon the servant is knowledge and awareness of his Lord the Mighty and Majestic, and how to worship Him.

How does a person Know Allah? A person can know Allah by means of His Aayat-ul-Kawniyyah (Signs within the creation) and His Aayat-ul-Qur’aniyyah (The Ayat of Qur’an). We know Allah by what the Messenger of Allah taught us. For this it is important to know and learn about the Messenger himself so that we can understand and appreciate the message that he brought. The Messenger of Allah is Muhammad the son of Abdullah, the son of ‘Abdul-Muttalib, the son of Hashim, the son of ‘Abd-Manaaf, all the way to the end of the noble Prophetic lineage, which goes all the way via Prophet Ismail back to Prophet Ibrahim. What was his message? His message was the religion of Islam and this is the message and religion of all the Messengers of Allah. The legislations might have differed from Prophet to Prophet, but the basic creed and foundation that they called towards has been uniform since the beginning of time. All previous legislations have been abrogated and just the legislation of Prophet Muhammad remains. Even when Prophet Isa returns, he will judge based on the legislation of our beloved Prophet Muhammad.

Islam can be defined as:

الاستسلام لله بالتوحيد والانقياد له بالطاعة والخلوص من الشرك وأهله

“To submit to Allah with tawheed, and to comply to Him with obedience, and remaining free of shirk and its people”

Imam Ibn al-Qayyim said in Al-Kaafiyat-ush-Shaafiyah:
Knowledge is Allaah said, His Prophet said,
The Companions said – they are the possessors of knowledge and awareness
Knowledge is not that you foolishly raise up a disagreement
Between the Messenger and the opinion of so-and-so.

Knowledge is that which comes from the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger. These are the ultimate evidences. As for the speech of scholars, then they are explanations that clarify what these two primary sources convey. They are not a proof in themselves. Only with evidences can we differentiate between that which is right and wrong. Certainty in a matter cannot be attained without it being based on evidences.

المسألة الثَّانِيَةُ: الْعَمَلُ بِهِ

Second: Acting on this.

المسألة الثَّالِثَةُ: الدَّعْوَةُ إِلَيْهِ

Third: Calling to it.

Knowledge is knowing the truth with proof: It is the opposite of ignorance.Some of the scholars have said: Knowledge calls for action; it’s either responded to or otherwise it leaves. Thus, there is no benefit possessing knowledge while not acting upon it. Rather, if a person seeks knowledge, it is a must to act upon it; otherwise, one would be like the Jews. They have knowledge; however, they do not act upon it. The first whom the fire will be kindled are three kinds of people and from them is a scholar who has sought knowledge and yet did not act upon it. As the poet said: ‘And the scholar who does not act upon his knowledge will be punished before the idol worshiper’.

As part of a larger narration, it was narrated on the authority of Abu hurairah that the Messenger of Allah said, "...Then will be brought forward a man who acquired knowledge and imparted it (to others) and recited the Qur'an. He will be brought And Allah will make him recount His blessings and he will recount them (and admit having enjoyed them in his lifetime). Then will Allah ask: What did you do (to requite these blessings)? He will say: I acquired knowledge and disseminated it and recited the Qur'an seeking Thy pleasure. Allah will say: You have told a lie. You acquired knowledge so that you might be called" a scholar," and you recited the Qur'an so that it might be said:" He is a Qari" and such has been said. Then orders will be passed against him and he shall be dragged with his face downward and cast into the Fire." [Muslim]

Knowledge is joined to action, and action is the fruit of knowledge, so knowledge without action is like a tree without fruit, there is no benefit in it, and knowledge was sent down to bring about action. If a person acts without knowledge, then he will get into trouble because the Messenger of Allah said, “Whoever does an action which our affair is not in accordance with, then it will be rejected”. [Bukhari]

This is why everyday multiple times, we recite in our prayers ar the end of Surah al-Fatiha

اهْدِنَا الصِّرَاطَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ
صِرَاطَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ غَيْرِ الْمَغْضُوبِ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا الضَّالِّينَ

Guide us upon the straight path, the path of those whom You have favoured, not those upon whom is Your Anger, nor those who are astray. [Surah al-Fatiha, 6-7]

Allah called those people who act without knowledge as those who are astray. This is a characteristic of the Christians. As for those people who have knowledge, but do not act upon it as being those upon whom is Anger. This is a characteristic of the Jews. Point of reflection here is to find out what caused the Anger of Allah to descend upon the Jews and how the Christians were misguided. This shows us the deep relation between Ilm and Amal. The Jews got the revelation from Allah through numerous Prophets and Messengers, but they hid it, changed it or killed the Messenger who brought them or sold it as mentioned in many places in the Quran. They had the knowledge but did not act upon it and this brought the Anger of Allah upon them. The Christians were the opposite, who acted upon that which they did not have authentic knowledge of.

Fudayl Ibn Iyad famously said, “The scholar remains ignorant until he acts upon his Knowledge. Only when he acts upon that Knowledge which he has gained, is he a scholar.”

Knowledge acquired has to be taught and clarified further to educate the community. Allah says,

وَإِذْ أَخَذَ اللَّهُ مِيثَاقَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ لَتُبَيِّنُنَّهُ لِلنَّاسِ وَلَا تَكْتُمُونَهُ

And when Allah took the solemn agreement from those who were given the scripture, you must make it clear to the people and not conceal it [Surah Aal Imran, 187]

قُلْ هَٰذِهِ سَبِيلِي أَدْعُو إِلَى اللَّهِ ۚ عَلَىٰ بَصِيرَةٍ أَنَا وَمَنِ اتَّبَعَنِي ۖ وَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ وَمَا أَنَا مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ

Say: “This is my way, I call to Allah upon clear knowledge, I and those who follow me, and Perfect is Allaah and I am not from the people of shirk (those who associate others with Allah).” [Surah Yusuf:108]

Inviting to Allah has conditions:
- It must be sincerely for Allah.
- It must be based on sound and authentic Islamic knowledge.
- It must be done with wisdom and patience.
- It is a must to know the situation of those whom you are inviting.

Allah says,

Say, ‘This is my way. I invite to Allah upon insight; I and those who follow me. Exalted is Allah, and I am not of those who worship others with Him. [Surah Yusuf, 108].

That which is being pointed at is everything the Messenger came with from the legislation, Qur’an and authentic Sunnah. A person who invites to Allah is the sincere one who only wishes to connect the people to their Creator. It means calling people with knowledge, and it includes knowledge of: the legislation and those being invited.

Abu Hurairah narrated that Allah’s Messenger said, “Whoever is asked about knowledge and he conceals it, then Allah will give him a bridle of fire on the Day of Resurrection”. [Abu Dawud]

The Prophet ﷺ said, “Convey from me even an Ayah; relate traditions from Banu Israel, and there is no restriction on that; but he who deliberately forges a lie against me let him have his abode in the Hell.” [Bukhari].

Mundhir bin Jarir reported on the authority of his father in a long hadith: The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said: "He who sets a good precedent in Islam, there is a reward for him for this (act of goodness) and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards; and he who sets in Islam an evil precedent, there is upon him the burden of that, and the burden of him also who acted upon it subsequently, without any deduction from their burden." [Muslim]

المسألة الرَّابِعَةُ: الصَّبْرُ عَلَى الأَذَى فِيهِ

Fourth: Patience with the harm that befalls due to it

After teaching and inviting others, the author mentions patience. As if he is saying to you: ‘ the one who takes this path will come across hardships just like the Prophets and Messengers did, so it is a must to observe patience.

Sabr, linguistically means to stop, forbearance, or refrain. A person is to have patience in the worship of Allah, in abstaining from the prohibitions, and in all that matters that have been decreed upon us.Technically, the Shariah defines it as forbearance to do certain things and stay away from some. Imam Ibn al-Qayyim divided patience into 3 categories:
1. Patience upon the obedience of Allah so it is carried out; such as, patience to pray.
2. Patience to stay away from the disobedience of Allah so it is abandoned, such as, the major sins.  
3. Patience with what Allah allows to befall you from the hardships; for example, sickness.

Anyone who forbids evil and enjoins good will be opposed by the people of desires and evil. Our Messenger was opposed and called names when he invited people to worship Allah alone. They said he was a sorcerer and a liar, and they said he was a madman. They harmed him with physical harm as well on multiple occasions. They threw stones at him in Taif until his heels ran with blood. They threw the after-birth of camels on his back whilst he was making prostration by the Ka‘bah. They threatened to intimidate him, kill him, and even carried out a failed assassination on his life in Makkah. We see similar instances with other Prophets of Allah like Nuh, Musa, Lut etc.

Whoever carries out this call will certainly face harm in accordance with the level of his faith and his call. Patience has to be a constant companion on this journey and bear any hurdles that come along with it in Allah’s cause. Every step in this journey is rewarded by Allah and becomes a means of attaining the ultimate success.

What is important to keep in mind that the order needs to be maintained or else it is a recipe for disaster. One cannot call people to something without having knowledge based on authentic evidences. Likewise one cannot be someone who has knowledge and calls people to it but himself does not practice upon it.

Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said,

يُؤْتَى بِالرَّجُلِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فَيُلْقَى فِي النَّارِ فَتَنْدَلِقُ أَقْتَابُ بَطْنِهِ فَيَدُورُ بِهَا كَمَا يَدُورُ الْحِمَارُ بِالرَّحَى فَيَجْتَمِعُ إِلَيْهِ أَهْلُ النَّارِ فَيَقُولُونَ يَا فُلاَنُ مَا لَكَ أَلَمْ تَكُنْ تَأْمُرُ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَتَنْهَى عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ فَيَقُولُ بَلَى قَدْ كُنْتُ آمُرُ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَلاَ آتِيهِ وَأَنْهَى عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَآتِيهِ

“A man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection and thrown in Hell-Fire and his intestines will pour forth in Hell and he will go round along with them, as an ass goes round the mill stone. The denizens of Hell would gather round him and say: O, so and so, what has happened to you? Were you not enjoining us to do what was reputable and forbid us to do what was disreputable? He will say: Of course, it is so; I used to enjoin (upon people) to do what was reputable but did not practice that myself. I had been forbidding people to do what was disreputable, but practiced it myself”. [Muslim]

وَالدَّلِيلُ قَوْلُهُ تَعَالَى: بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم: “وَالْعَصْرِ
إِنَّ الإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ
إِلاَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ” [سورة العصر كاملة]

The proof for this is Allah’s saying:

إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ
إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ

“In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy. By the time! Verily mankind is at loss – except for those who believe and perform righteous deeds, and advise one another towards the truth and advise one another towards patience.” [Surah Al-‘Asr]

Allah starts of this Surah by swearing an oath by time. This goes to show the importance of that which is to follow. The ال in  الإِنسَانَ denotes that all of mankind is in loss. The exception to it are those who believe, perform righteous deeds, advise one another and advise to be patient.

A point to note is that Ilm is not directly mentioned here. Here having Iman is the equivalent of having Ilm. Wherever in the Quran and Sunnah we are obligated to seek knowledge, then that is followed by having faith and implementing that knowledge too. Merely knowing about the matter is not enough.

Iman entails I’tiqad, Qawl and Amal

How do we know that doing these 4 things is obligatory? Because Allah says those who do not do these actions are those who are in loss meaning that they are destroyed. It is an obligation upon all of us to save ourselves and others from all such harms and evil endings.

قَالَ الشَّافِعيُّ ـ رَحِمَهُ اللهُ تَعَالَى – : لَوْ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللهُ حُجَّةً عَلَى خَلْقِهِ إِلا هَذِهِ السُّورَةَ لَكَفَتْهُمْ
وَقَالَ البُخَارِيُّ ـ رَحِمَهُ اللهُ تَعَالَى ـ : بَابُ: العِلْمُ قَبْلَ القَوْلِ وَالْعَمَلِ؛ وَالدَّلِيلُ قَوْلُهُ تَعَالَى: ( فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّهُ لاَ اله إِلاَّ اللَّهُ وَاسْتَغْفِرْ لِذَنبِكَ )[محمد:19]، فَبَدَأَ بِالْعِلْمِ (قَبْلَ القَوْلِ وَالعَمَلِ

Imam ash-Shafi’i said: “Had Allah not sent down a proof to His creation other than this surah (chapter), it would have been sufficient for them.”

Imam al-Bukhari said: “Chapter: Knowledge comes before speech and action.”

The proof for this is Allah’s saying:

“So know that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allaah, and seek forgiveness for your sins.” [Surah Muhammad, 19]

So He began by mentioning knowledge before speech and action.

The above is based on the explanations of Sheikh Ibn al-Uthaymeen, Sheikh Saleh al-Fawzan, Sheikh Haytham Sarhan, Sheikh Maqsood ul Hassan Faizi, Sheikh Abu Bakr Mukhtar, Sheikh Yasir al-Jabri, Sheikh Dr.Ubaidur Rahman Madani, Sheikh Dr.Abdul Basit Faheem

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