Six Pillars of Iman
Arkanul Iman

based on al-Majmu' by Imam ash-Shafi'



The Pillars of Iman are six:
To believe in Allah, the Angels, the Books, the Messengers, the Last Day, the Divine Destiny and that the good and bad of it are all from Allah, the Most High.

Arkanal Imanul Sitta:
An Tu'minu biLlahi, wa mala'ikatihi, wa kutubihi, wa Rusulihi, wa bilyawmil Aakhir, wa bil-Qadarihi khairihi wa sharihi minAllahi Ta'ala

The Pillars of Iman Are Six:

1. To believe in Allah

This means that you believe that Allah exists, and that He is One in His Essence, His Attributes, and His Actions. He has no partner or associate sharing with Him the right to be worshipped. To Him is every quality of perfection that is befitting of His exalted Being, and it is impossible for any deficiency to be attributed to Him.

2. To believe in His angels

This is the acceptance and compliance of the heart that the angles are the noble servants of Allah, they do as He commands and never disobey. They are beings created from light, neither male nor female. They do not have father, mothers, mates, or children. Their sustenance is the remembrance and glorification of Allah. They act without restriction in the creation according to what Allah has permitted for them.

It is obligatory to know ten angels in particular:

1) Jibreel : has the duty to of dispensing revelation to the Messengers of Allah.

2) Mika'il : in charge of the rains.

3) Isra'fil : in charge of blowing the horn on the Day of Judgement.

4) 'Azra'il : the angel of death, in charge of taking the souls from their bodies.

5 & 6) Munkar and Nakeer : the angels that question the dead in the graves.

7 & 8) Raqeeb and 'Ateed : the angels that record the good and bad deeds.

9) Ridwaan : the gatekeeper of Paradise.

10) Maalik : the gatekeeper of the Fire.

3. To believe in His books

This is to believe that the Books of Allah are His Non-created Speech, and that they are sanctified above being comprised of letters and sounds and that everything that they contain is real and true. There are four books in particular we must know:

1) The Tawrah given to Musa (alayhis salam)

2) The Zabur given to Dawud (alayhis salam)

3) The Injeel given to 'Isa (alayhis salam)

4) and the Qur'an given to Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wasalam)

4. To believe in His messengers

Belief in the messengers means to believe that Allah sent them to the creation as a guidance, in order that they would teach them how to perfect their lives in this world and the Hereafter. He aided them with miraculous occurrences that proved their truthfulness. They delivered the message Allah revealed to them. It is obligatory to show respect and courtesy to all of them, and to not distinguish between them (i.e. saying, "we believe in this one, but we reject this other one.") They are all under Allah's Divine protection from sins great and small.

It has been said that the number of messenger is 124,000, and from among them we are required to know 25:

1) Adam     2) Idris     3) Nuh     4) Hud     5) Salih     6) Ibrahim     7) Lut     8) Isma'il     9) Ishaq     10) Ya'qub     11) Yusuf     12) Ayyub     13) Shu'aib    14) Musa     15) Harun    16) Ilyasa'    17) Dawud    18) Sulaiman    19) Ilyaas    20) Yunus    21) Zakariyyah    22) Yahya    23) Dhul Kifl    24) 'Isa    25) Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wasalam)

The Muslim should also know that our prophet Muhammad (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) was a Qurayshi Arab, the seal of the prophets and messengers, that he was born in Makkah (50 days after the Companions of the Elephant perished), that he migrated to al-Madinah, that he died and was buried there, that his system of law (shari'ah) abrogated all systems of law that preceded it, and that it is valid to the Last Day.

5. To believe in the Day of Judgement

This means to believe that it is real and true, and to believe in everything it is comprised of such as the scale, the bridge over the hell-fire leading into Paradise, the Paradise, and the Hell-Fire. One must also believe in the questioning of the dead by the two angels, the punishment/felicity in the grave, and other things from the matters of the world between death and the Last Day (this world is called al-Barzakh).

6. To believe in the Divine Destiny and that the good and bad of it are all from Allah.

To believe that nothing happens or occurs except that which Allah has determined, and that it is impossible for anything to happen or occur without Allah having determined it. All good and bad was determined before the existence of creation.


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