Bid'ah (Innovations)

Bid’ah, an action that is more beloved to Shaitaan than Sin.

All praise is due to Allah, we praise Him, seek His aid and His forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allah from the evils of our souls and the evils of our action. Whomsoever Allah guides there is none to misguide and whomsoever Allah misguides there is none to guide. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship besides Allah, alone, without any partners and I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and messenger.

“O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam.”
[A. Yusuf Ali Qur'an translation, Surah Al-Imran 3:102]

To proceed, verily the best speech is the Book of Allah and the best of guidance is the guidance of Muhammad (pbuh). And the worst of affairs the newly invented matters, every newly invented matter is an innovation, and innovation is misguidance and all misguidance is in the Fire. Though innovations in worldly matters, such as science, medicine and technology are acceptable and encouraged, Bid‘ah within the religion is often seen as a sin:

Narrated Aisha:

Allah's Apostle said, "If somebody innovates something which is not in harmony with the principles of our religion, that thing is rejected."

Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 3 Hadith Number 861

Today we as Muslims have reached to a point where the humiliation has become unbearable.

Today we are the disgraced nation, the ‘barbaric’ people, the ‘uncivilized’ ones, the ‘terrorists’. But this was not true few centuries back, we were the people of Honor, people of science, people of technology, people of great achievement.

The obvious question is what happened?

This disgrace and humiliation has befallen upon us Muslims is due to our own doings. People have gone away from their Deen and fell in the traps of the shaitaan. Allah will inflict humiliation upon you and will not remove it until you return to your religion.

This is exactly what is happening today. Today Muslims are satisfied with their lives, their home, their children, their money, their status etc. And certainly they have abandoned Jihad. Are we not supposed to be like One Body? Are we not supposed to feel the pain of the sufferings that our brothers and sisters are going through all over the world? Why are we humiliated?

The answer is that we have stopped worrying about Akhirah (Hereafter) and we are content with dunia and the only way this humiliation will be uplifted is by returning to our religion.

The condition of our Ummah today and the reason behind this condition as well as the cure that is mentioned by our beloved Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

Allah (swt) says in Qur’an: 'Verily, this is My Way leading straight:, follow it; follow not (other) paths; they will scatter you about from His (great) Path;...' [A. Yusuf Ali Qur'an translation, Surah Al Anam 6:153]

Allah also says in the Qur'an: “Indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the praise of Allah.” [A. Yusuf Ali Qur'an translation, Surah Al-Ahzab 33:21]

Narrated Abdullah ibn Mas'ud
Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) drew a line for us and then said: That is the path shown by Allah. Then he drew several other lines on his right and left sides and said: These are the paths on every side of which there is a devil calling towards it. He then recited this verse: `Verily this path of Mine is straight so adhere it.' [Al-Tirmidhi Hadith Number 53]


Narrated Abdullah ibn Amr
Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) said: There will befall my Ummah exactly (all those) evils which befell the people of Isra'il, so much so that if there was one amongst them who openly committed fornication with his mother there will be among my Ummah one who will do that, and if the people of Isra'il were fragmented into seventy-two sects my Ummah will be fragmented into seventy-three sects. All of them will be in Hell Fire except one sect. They (the Companions) said: Allah's Messenger, which is that? Whereupon he said: It is one to which I and my companions belong. [Al-Tirmidhi Hadith Number 56]

Allah (swt) says “And the first to lead the way, of the Muhajirin and the Ansar, and those who followed them in goodness, Allah is pleased with them and they are well pleased with Him and He hath made ready for them gardens underneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide for ever. That is the supreme triumph.” [M.Pickthall Qur'an translation, Surah At-Tauba 9:100]

Here Allah (swt) is talking about the believers, the Sahabas and is Approving their actions by saying that Allah is well pleased with them and they are well pleased with Allah.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “The best of mankind is my generation, then those who come after them, then those who come after them…” [Various Hadiths]

Qur’an and Sunnah are to be taken in entirety. We cannot pick and choose and add and subtract when it comes to the matters of Islam. The way of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is the Siratal Mustaqeem, which was best understood by the Sahabas (companions) and Allah Himself has given His approval regarding them. It was then imitated by the students of Sahabas, the tabaieen and then by their students, the Taba-tabaieen. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) told us about these three generations being the best of all generations that will come until the day of judgement.

For our deeds to be accepted it has to fulfill two conditions.

1. The Intention: As our beloved Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: “ every action is based on intention…”
2. Is that action proved from the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

What is the Sunnah?
Sunnah is the sayings of Prophet (pbuh), the actions of Prophet (pbuh) and his approvals (i.e. if he (pbuh) was silent when he saw an action)

Allah (swt) says in Qur’an “Nay! O Muhammad - by your Rabb - they will never be true believers until they accept you as a judge in their disputes, then they do not find any resentment in their hearts against your verdicts and accept them with complete submission.” [F.Malik Qur'an translation, Surah An-Nisaa 4:65]

Allah (swt) says in Qur’an “Say: "Obey Allah and obey the Rasool. If you do not, the Rasool is still under obligation to fulfill his duty, as you are under obligation to fulfill yours; and if you obey him, you shall be rightly guided. Note it well that the responsibility of the Rasool is only to deliver Allah's message clearly." [F.Malik Qur'an translation, Surah An-Nur 24:54]

Allah says that in order for us to become believers we have to accept Muhammad (saw) as judge in every matter, every problem and accept his (pbuh) judgement whole-heartedly without any resentment. Further more Allah (swt) through out the Qur’an has commanded us to obey his messenger and only then we will be rightly guided. Thus only when these two conditions are met that action will be accepted In-sha-Allah.

What is Bid’ah?
Many people mistake Bid’ah to be all invented matter. Bid‘ah in religious terms is referred to as anything which was not sanctioned by Muhammad (saw) or his Sahabah (companions). Bid‘ah as a sin is ranked right below shirk, which makes it the second biggest sin.

In worldly matters

Scholars have divided bid‘ah in worldly matters into two types.

  1. Innovations that are purely good - these are permissible under Islamic law. This can include anything from inventions such as watches, to customs and culture, given they don't violate Sharia.
  2. Innovations that are purely evil - these are forbidden under Islamic law. Examples of this type of bid'ah include alcohol

In religious matters

Religious innovation means inventing a new way of worshipping Allah (swt) that was not originally included in the message that Islamic tradition claims was revealed to Muhammad (saw).


All praises and thanks are due to Allah the Lord of the worlds. Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me.  Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength. May Allah forgive our sins with his Infinite Mercy, Aameen.


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