Category Archives: Fiqh

The Importance of Studying the Fiqh of Inheritance

40 scenarios inheritance


There are many courses being run in the UK on various topics related to islamic studies such as tafsir, the fiqh of worship, hadith etc, but very few on the topic of the fiqh of inheritance.  When reflected on, this phenomenon is a little odd as the fiqh rules which relate to the division of property upon the death of a person apply to every Muslim and it could be argued in terms of importance and priority perhaps rank higher than many of the courses being delivered throughout the UK.

The importance of these rules and their study is emphasized in the Quran with its detailed exposition of inheritance shares and in the Sunnah such as in the following narrations:

The Prophet, (God bless him and give him peace), said:

“Learn inheritance and teach it for it is half the knowledge and it will be forgotten, and it is the first thing to be ripped from my Ummah” (Ibn Majah 2710).

Likewise the following narration:

He (God bless him and give him peace) also said:

“Learn inheritance and teach it to people for I am a mortal being and knowledge will decrease until two people would differ amongst themselves over inheritance, but wouldn’t find an arbitrator” (al-Nasa’i 6305).

We are therefore pleased to announce a new beginners course on learning the rules of calculating inheritance shares by means of studying forty of the most common inheritance scenarios.  We will inshAllah be studying a text authored by the recent great scholar of Mecca, Shaykh Hasan al-Mashat.

Further information and registration can be found on the following link:


Fiqh of Inheritance Text for Beginners



InshAllah we hope to roll out in the near future a beginners course on the Islamic rules of Inheritance, an area which receives little attention amongst those who attend study circles and surrounding which there are a number of misconceptions.

Alhumdulillah we have prepared the first draft of a translation of a text on this science which was authored for novices by the great Meccan scholar, Shaykh Hasan al-Mashat.  Shaykh Hasan designed this work to be a gentle introduction to this field, and focuses his attention on forty scenarios of inheritance.

The draft translation has been supplemented with tables adapted from the commentary of Shaykh Muhsin al-Musawa who was a student of the author himself.

The image above is of copy of this text we were grateful to receive recently, which was printed in the lifetime of the author  (1976).

Prayers are requested for the successful delivery of these workshops and utilising of this Mubarak text.


Purification Methods in the Hanafi School


Please find attached a diagram which was put together for a fiqh class which was hosted by one of the student societies at SOAS this year.   The rulings were taken from the book Al-Mishkat authored by Dr. Salah Abul-Hajj.  Note:  The ruling related to the large rug can be found in works such as Sharh al-Wiqayah and Fath Bab al-Inayah.


Khatam Gathering of Fiqh Book (London)



Alhumdulillah we are pleased to announce that we will inshAllah be completing the reading of the text in Hanafi fiqh (entitled The Beginner’s Gift) which we started studying back in November 2014.  We intend in this final lesson to read the final few pages of the book with a brief explanation.   In addition to this we plan to do something which is quite rare on university campuses, namely  narrate to students the following pattern chained narrations (musalsalat):

  1. Hadith of Mercy
  2. Narration of Passing the Prayer Beads (Subha)
  3. Hadith of the Handshake of Anas
  4. Hadith of the recitation of the Fatiha
  5. Hadith of Love
  6. Hadith of Physical Sighting

Date: Wednesday 11th of March 2015

Location: SOAS Room 273

Time: 6.00pm – 7.30pm

A pdf for those serious about receiving the Musalsal hadith will be available by emailing beforehand. The pdf will inshAllah be mailed out at the latest by Tuesday evening.  These series of circles were organised with the assistance of Turath Publishing to whom we are grateful.

Waters Diagram


Please find below a diagram we put together regarding the rules regarding water in the Hanafi school.  It is still a work in progress and if there are any mistakes please let us know.  Please click on the image to view it in greater detail.


Najd and Traditional Hanbalism

Ulema Najd


As mentioned elsewhere on this site, the evidence based method of teaching fiqh has seemed odd to me and radically different to the way other madhabs are taught in institutes of traditional learning.  Some people who seem to know nothing of fiqh except their understanding of it being the “weighing up” of evidences and following the “stronger opinion” may be puzzled to find endless pages of classic fiqh commentaries with the odd mention of an evidence.  They may also scoff at any rebuke of the contemporary “I am a Hanbali who does tarjih of the strongest opinion” which seems to be prevalent in Saudi.

I have detailed this elsewhere on this site and prepared a small powerpoint on this which I may upload soon inshAllah.  [Suffice it to say, Imam al-Shawkani’s Salafi commentary entitled Sayl al-Jarrar on a Shia Zaydi fiqh text sums up nicely what I am referring to].

I was therefore pleased to find the following passages in a work on the scholars of Najd by Shaykh Aal-Bassam (cover above) which succinctly highlighted the differences in approach to fiqh which came in to vogue after the emergence of Shaykh Ibn Abd al-Wahab.  He also mentioned the existence of other schools of fiqh in Najd in the not too distant past, and the existence of many scholars of Najd who opposed the movement of Shaykh Ibn Abd al-Wahab.

The selected quotes below begin from page 17 onwards:

From the time that we first know about the scholars of Najd until the appearance of Shaykh Muhammad bin Abd al-Wahab (Allah Most High have mercy on him), scholarly knowledge was primarily limited to fiqh, meaning the subsidiary matters of fiqh.

The predominant madhab amongst them was the madhab of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (Allah be pleased with him), along with the existence of others from the schools of the four Imams, except that the majority was that of the madhab of Imam Ahmad. Scholarly knowledge – regardless of the different madhabs – did not usually extend beyond comprehensive understanding of this field of knowledge.

Thus their engagement with the knowledge of Tafsir, Hadith and Tawhid was extremely limited. As for the sciences related to language, they did not concern themselves with them except for the science of Nahw and its concise works from which they learned that which was sufficient to rectify their language from grammatical mistakes.

 Anything apart from this they regarded as a waste of time and a preoccupation from that which is superior than it. It was rare that anyone from them would go beyond Fiqh to the other sacred sciences or Arabic…

As for the Fiqh of the madhab of Imam Ahmad, then they had gained a complete mastery over it and paid significant attention to it, such that they taught its books in a detailed manner and researched its issues in a comprehensive and intricate way.

When the call (dawah) of Shaykh Muhammad bin Abd al-Wahab spread then this approach (ittijah) changed, with a greater variety in the intellectual culture and increase in sciences. Thus the primary focus became Tawhid not least the Tawhid al-Uluhiyyah, along with attention being paid to the Salafi books of Tafsir such as Ibn Jarir, Ibn Kathir, al-Baghawi and their like.

 There was a focus on hadith and its central works and commentaries. Likewise the principles of these sciences were taught. The attention in fiqh – the subject of the lesson being the fiqh of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal – was that if the well known position of the school (Mashur) was weak and another view (in the school) was more correct, then the preferred view taken was which was  supported by the evidence from the Book and the authentic Sunnah, meanwhile not going outside of the positions of the other Imams or some of them.

If you wish to compare between these two periods in relation to the research of matters of knowledge, then compare between the Fatawa of the scholars of Najd, some of which were copied by Shaykh Ahmad al-Manqur in his collection (Majmu’) and between the Fatawa which are compiled in Durar al-Saniyyah. You will see that in the first they confine themselves to the well known position (Mashur) of the Madhab, attempting to apply their answer in conformity with that which had been stated by the Hanbali jurists, free from citing evidences from the Book and the Sunnah.

 As for the Durar al-Saniyyah, you will see that their Fatawa are sourced from the madhab of Imam Ahmad (Allah have mercy on him) except that they are mentioned alongside their evidences in the Sacred Law. Likewise you will find that they may go against the well-known position of the Madhab when the authentic evidence conflicted with the Madhab…the point is that the intellectual culture between the first and second time periods had changed.

Before the emergence of Shaykh Muhammad bin Abd al-Wahab and the unification of the country and centralising of education policy, all the four madhabs existed in Najd, except that the widespread madhab in it was the Hanbali madhab. The people of al-Kharaj on the other hand were predominantly upon the madhab of Imam Abu Hanifah and al-Shafii. From their scholars was Rashid bin Khanin al-Aidhi by way of lineage and Hanafi in madhab, a contemporary and opponent of Shaykh Muhammad [bin Abd al-Wahab] and his dawah.

 I was informed by Shayh Rashid bin Khanin – our contemporary – …that he spent a lengthy time as a scribe for the Qadi of al-Kharaj, Shaykh Abd al-Aziz bin Baz, and that the [old] legal records and rulings which they found [for the area] were all issued by Hanafi or Shafii judges, and that scholars of the Khanin family were previously Hanafi…

Likewise there was in some of its scholars [of Najd] adherence to Tasawwuf and belonging to specific tariqahs

In this book of mine I have written biographical entries for many scholars who opposed the Salafi dawah which was revived by the Islamic leader, reformer, Imam Muhammad bin Abd al-Wahab.

End of selected quotes


Dua Khatam al-Quran (Donating Reward to the Deceased)


Those in the UK from an Indo-Pak background will be familiar with the Khatam al-Quran events where the family hosting at times have to “hire” the local Hafiz sahib or Imam to attend towards the end of the gathering so that the reward of the recital can be rewarded to the soul of the deceased.  How prevalent the “hiring” of above mentioned figures is I do not know, but it is of concern to me that families seem totally unprepared regarding how to go through the “ritual” of donating reward of recitation.  What should be clear is that it is something which in essence a very simple matter and does not require the service of experts to conduct the service.

With that in mind I was happy to find a number of texts authored by scholars of traditional Islam under the genre of Dua Khatam al-Quran, which consist of prayers both for the donation of recitation to a particular deceased person and generic comprehensive prayers regarding good in this world and the next.  In the document below you will find the following:

1. Prayers relating to donating the recitation of the Quran to the deceased from the works of: Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mulla and Shaykh Abdullah al-Khatib al-Jafari, both hailing from the city of al-Ahsa.

2. An inclusion of a few comprehensive prayers from the above mentioned texts which are not related to donating reward, but rather asking for goodness in this world and the next.

3. Inclusion of the Arabic text of the prayers which were available to me at the time of translation.  It is clear that the Arabic text is need of revision and tidying up,  InshAllah when this happens we will accordingly update the attached file.

4. This text can still be read for any donation of reward of recital, even if a complete Khatam al-Quran has not taken place.  A very slight change in the wording at the beginning might be needed though.

5.  The translation was undertaken in haste in order for recitation at a gathering of Khatam al-Quran in Ramadan.  It is hoped that it will be reviewed in the near future inshAllah.

6.  The Quranic verses at the beginning were included by the authors due to their immense virtue and have been included here.  The prayers have been translated in to English, and readers have the option of just reading the translation of the prayers in gathering should they so wish.

7.  Being that the time of the Khatam al-Quran is also a blessed time where supplications are accepted, readers might also wish to combine the prayer linked below with the text Beneficial Prayers of Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Mulla which can be found on this site.

It is hoped that the text linked to below (in red) will enable people to donate reward of recital to the deceased with ease and peace of mind, whether individually in private or in gatherings.


Dua Khatam al-Quran


Reciting the Fatiha for Attaining One’s Needs



For some years now I have attended gatherings where attendees have been asked to recite the Fatiha after the request for a specific dua.  For example someone may make a request for xyz dua, and then everyone would be asked to make dua by reciting the Fatiha.  I have been looking for the reason why this was the case for some time now, and was interested to find the information presented below in the Hanbali scholar, Allamah Yusuf Ibn Abd al-Hadi’s treatise entitled Seeking Help by Means of the Fatiha for Success in Matters.  It is a small work of his on this topic which provides evidences for why the Fatiha should be recited at the time of making dua as a means of acceptance of the dua.  He said the following:

Ata said, “If you have a need, then recite the Fatiha until you complete it, and your need will be fulfilled Allah willing.”  [Kitab al-Thawab of Shaykh bin Hayyan as in Dur al-Manthur 1/24]

He then cited the following narration of Abu Hurayrah regarding the recital of the Fatiha, the end of which is:

(If the person praying says) ‘Guide us to the straight path, the path of those You have favoured, not those who have earned Your anger nor those who have gone astray’ [Allah Most High says] This is for my servant, and my servant will have whatever he asks for.”  [Musnad al-Humaydi 973, a version is also related by Muslim 4/101]

Ibn Abd al-Hadi explained:

Some have cited this hadith as evidence that no one recites the Fatiha to fulfil and ask for their need except that it is fulfilled.

He added:

The most learned scholar [Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah] said at the beginning of his book, ‘It is the Umm al-Kitab, the seven oft revealed verses, a complete cure, a beneficial medicine, a complete healing, the key to wealth, success and a protection of strength. It repels worries, sadness, fear and sorrow from the one who knows its rank and gives it its due right…knows the manner of seeking cure and treatment by means of it, and the secret due to which it is thus.

He also said:

When some of the companions understood this they performed ruqya upon someone who had been bitten and he was cured immediately.

Ibn Abd al-Hadi also mentioned:

Our Shaykh Abu al-Faraj Ibn al-Habbal would use it often to fulfil his needs and obtain success in his matters, and utilising it for the fulfillment of important matters…I have myself witnessed the successful fulfilment of great matters, for there are few exceptions from the needs which I encounter from the needs of this world and the next world for which I recite the Fatiha except that they are fulfilled and are successful…It is an immense Surah, so you should (Allah have mercy on you) recite it often for your matters, needs, cures and all important situations that you encounter.