Islamic Studies Curriculum


This curriculum provides a clear, systematic four-level program for students of Islamic Knowledge. It is taught by qualified scholars, and presents traditional Islamic knowledge in a deep, practical, inspiring manner--with an emphasis on living knowledge as guidance.


Level One gives a clear, strong foundation for religious practice and Islamic studies. Level Two gives students grounding in all the key Islamic sciences. Level Three deepens understanding of these sciences--with appreciation of reasoning and application. Levels Four and Five work towards mastery --so that students can become true inheritors of Prophetic teachings, and agents of benefit and guidance for humanity.

Level One
Level Two
Level Three
Level Four
Level Five
  • Level 3

Course

One Year Intermediate Program in Shafi’i Fiqh and Usul

Reliance of the Traveller (Umdat al-Salik) (Level Three) with The Essence of Islamic Legal Theory (Lubb al-Usul) (Level Three) with Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan In the Name of Allah, Merciful and Compassionate, with blessings and peace upon our Master Muhammad, his folk, and companions Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan, a senior instructor at SeekersGuidance, will be teaching live weekly classes covering two key texts in Shafi’i...

Reliance of the Traveller (Umdat al-Salik) (Level Three) with The Essence of Islamic Legal Theory (Lubb al-Usul) (Level Three) with Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan

In the Name of Allah, Merciful and Compassionate, with blessings and peace upon our Master Muhammad, his folk, and companions Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan, a senior instructor at SeekersGuidance, will be teaching live weekly classes covering two key texts in Shafi’i fiqh and usul over the course of one year: Program Description This one-year Specialization Certificate Program is an Intermediate Program in Shafi’i  Fiqh and Usul. It covers Level three of the SeekersGuidance Islamic Studies Curriculum in Shafi’i  Fiqh and Usul. This program will encompass a thorough study of two texts.
  • Umdat as-Salik (Reliance of the Traveller) (Level Three of the SeekersGuidance Islamic Studies Curriculum), in full–with readings from the commentary of umda, Fath al-Wahhab al-Malik, and Mahalli’s commentary on the Minhaj, Kanz al-Ragibin, with its Hashiyah by Qalyubi
  • Shaykh al-Islam’s Lubb al-Usul (Level Three)–with reference to his own commentary, Gayat al-wusul.
Class Format Three live classes per week, 45-60 Minutes each. Students are expected to attend live, or to follow the recordings. There will be an online forum for questions, discussion, and related texts and resources. Preparation, participation, and asking questions is expected – as is the following of recommended readings. Conditions for Joining the Class This is an intermediate level class in Shafi’i fiqh (Level Three) which adequately prepares a student to study the Minhaj al-Talibin of Imam al-Nawawi. It is therefore essential for students to have completed the study of the following works or their  equivalent: Required Text:
  • al-Risalah al-Jami’ah (Habshi’s Encompassing Epistle Explained)
  • al-Mukhtasar (Ba Fadl’s The Short Abridgement)
  • Abu Shuja’ with experience readings from ibn Qasim’s commentary with its’ Hashiyah by Imam Bajuri
Recommended Text:
  • Safina al-Naja
  • Al-Muqaddima Al-Hadramiyya with experience reading from one of its commentaries such as Bushra Al-Karim
As this course encompasses Level Three usul, students are required to have completed a study of the Waraqat of Imam al-Haramayn. For students without this, we recommend that they begin with Level One, then Level Two of the Islamic Studies Curriculum [link]. Although this class is completely free, students are expected to apply for the course and will need to be approved by the SeekersGuidance Academy team. Language of Instruction The Arabic text will be studied with English commentary. Timings Monday at 12:00 (GMT +2 | Cape Town) Wednesday at 12:00 (GMT +2 | Cape Town) Thursday at 12:00 (GMT +2 | Cape Town) Location This class will be offered online only via Zoom Student Expectations The expectations from the students would be to: i. Prepare for the class. ii. [a] Attend the class, with attentiveness, [b] participation, [c] asking questions. iii. Review the class notes and text. Diagramming the text helps. iv. Take notes. It is best to write out the matn itself, and essentials from the commentary (such as the key details and reasoning). This is also a good Arabic writing practice. v. Participate in the Class Forum–by asking questions, sharing issues of benefit, and getting involved in the relevant discussions, with the proper manners of a keen seeker of knowledge (talib `ilm). vi. Seek Allah’s Pleasure,and have high secondary intentions of acting upon what you learn with excellence, preserving and transmitting Prophetic guidance, to benefit yourself and to benefit others, and to gain all the benefits mentioned by Allah and the Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) for those who seek and transmit sacred knowledge for the sake of Allah. And Allah alone gives success.
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  • Level 2

Course

Quduri's Mukhtasar: On Marriage and Divorce

Executive Summary In this course, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani covers the legal rulings related to marriage and divorce according to the Hanafi school. This course serves to provide a proper understanding of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) of personal law. Course Summary In this course, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani covers the chapters on Marriage and Divorce, relying on the great classical commentaries—including Maydani’s Lubab—and majo...

Executive Summary

In this course, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani covers the legal rulings related to marriage and divorce according to the Hanafi school. This course serves to provide a proper understanding of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) of personal law.

Course Summary

In this course, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani covers the chapters on Marriage and Divorce, relying on the great classical commentaries—including Maydani’s Lubab—and major reference works of the Hanafi School. Topics covered include when it is required, sunna, or even prohibited to marry; the integrals and conditions of the marriage; and whom it is valid to marry. In addition, the rulings of divorce are outlined, detailing the cases of when it occurs, and the scenarios of its being binding or revocable. Finally, the course covers related issues such as the waiting period (‘idda) providing for needy relatives, and the rulings of child custody. This course is ideal for students of Islamic knowledge. Previous study of Fiqh is recommended, but not a requirement.

Curricular Context

  • This is a level two  course
  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) and On Worship (Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat, and Hajj): Shurunbulali’s Ascent to Felicity
  • Take this course before all courses in Level Three

Course Outline

LESSON 1: Introduction to the Text and Subject LESSON 2: The Marriage Contract, Marrying Non-Muslims, and the Guardian (Wakil) LESSON 3: Worldly Suitability (Kafa'a), Conditions of Marriage and Defects LESSON 4: Religious Conversion Within Marriage LESSON 5: Completion of Marriage | Nursing LESSON 6: Divorce LESSON 7: Completion of Divorce LESSON 8: Taking Back One's Wife | Foreswearing One's Wife (Ila') LESSON 9: Zihar and Mutual Imprecation (Li`an) LESSON 10: The Waiting Period LESSON 11: The Waiting Period and Providing for Family LESSON 12: Providing for Family and Child Custody

What You Will Learn:

The core rulings related to marriage;
  • The wisdom and purpose of these legal rulings;
  • The practical implementation, with excellence, of Divine Guidance;
  • How legal reasoning works, to give a better understanding of “how Fiqh works;” and
  • The method of the Hanafi School.
Course Format: 23 downloadable lessons, and plus a monthly live session.

About the Course Text

Imam Quduri’s full primer (matn) in Islamic law is so famous, that it is simply referred to as “The Book” (al-Kitab). For 1,000 years, it has served as the starting point for a full study of the science of Fiqh.
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  • Level 3

Course

Nasafi, Kanz al-Daqa’iq: On Public Law - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3
36 Sessions 47 hrs 23 mins

Course

Ghazzi’s Sharh Matn Abi Shuja: On Worship - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

Introduction This is the first of an eight-part traditional word-by-word explanation of a sharh (interlineal commentary) on the post popular primer in Shafi‘i law, Matn Abi Shuja‘. Hamza Karamali carefully works through the chapter of purification, the prayer, Rules of Zakat, Fasting and Hajj. relating the rulings to contemporary situations and explaining the hadith evidence and wisdom behind them. This is a course for e...

Introduction

This is the first of an eight-part traditional word-by-word explanation of a sharh (interlineal commentary) on the post popular primer in Shafi‘i law, Matn Abi Shuja‘. Hamza Karamali carefully works through the chapter of purification, the prayer, Rules of Zakat, Fasting and Hajj. relating the rulings to contemporary situations and explaining the hadith evidence and wisdom behind them. This is a course for experienced students of knowledge who have studied the Islamic sciences for many years

Curricular Context

  • This is a level three course
  • Complete all four parts of Introduction to Sacred Law (Shafi‘i) before taking this course
  • Reading fluency in Arabic is a prerequisite for taking this course

Course Outline

SESSION 1 Introduction Ibn Qasim al-Ghazzi’s Introduction Commentary on the Basmala and Hamdala Commentary on Abu Shuja’s Introduction
SESSION 2 Purification and Water The Meanings of “Kitab” and “Tahara” Purifying Water Pure and Impure Water
SESSION 3 Animal Hides, Gold and Silver Containers, and the Toothstick Tanning Animal Hides Permissible and Impermissible Containers Using the Toothstick
SESSION 4  Integrals of Wudu Integrals of Wudu: Intention and Washing the Face Integrals of Wudu: Remaining Integrals Using the Toothstick 
SESSION 5 Sunnas of Wudu Sunnas of Wudu Part 1 Sunnas of Wudu Part 2
SESSION 6 Cleaning Oneself After Using the Bathroom Cleaning Oneself After Using the Bathroom (istinja) Adab of Using the Bathroom
SESSION 7 Invalidators of Wudu and Ghusl Invalidators of Wudu Invalidators of Ghusl
SESSION 8 Ghusl and Wiping Over Khuffs Integrals of Ghusl Sunnas of Ghusl Sunna Ghusls Wiping Over Khuffs: Ruling  and Conditions
SESSION 9 Wiping over Khuffs and Tayammum Wiping Over Khuffs: Period of Wiping Wiping Over Khuffs: How to Wipe and Invalidators of Wiping Wiping Over Khuffs: How to Wipe and Invalidators of Wiping
SESSION 10 Tayammum and Najasa Integrals and Sunnas of Tayammum Invalidators of Tayammum Casts and Bandages Definition of Najasa SESSION10.4 Resource: Shaykh Nuh Ali Salman’s Fatwa on Narcotics: https://www.aliftaa.jo/Article.aspx?ArticleId=161#.W3RtM-gzbIV
SESSION 11 Najasa Kinds of Najasa: Digested Material Najasa `Ayniyya and Najasa Hukmiyya Minor, Regular, and Major Najasa Najasa that is Excused Overview of Kinds of Najasa Water that Runs Off While Washing Najasa (ghusala) Wine Turning Into Vinegar
SESSION 12 Menstruation Menstruation Things Unlawful in Ritual Impurity
SESSION 13 Prayer Times
SESSION 14 Conditions for the Obligation of Prayer Sunna Prayers
SESSION 15 Conditions for the Validity of Prayer
SESSION 16 Integrals -- Intention, Standing, Takbir Integrals -- Fatiha Integrals -- Ruku and Sujud Integrals -- Sitting, Salam, Order
SESSION 17 Major Sunnas Before and During the Prayer Regular Sunnas Difference Between Men’s and Women’s Prayer
SESSION 18 Invalidators of the Prayer Number of Rak‘as, Integrals, and Sunnas in the Obligatory Prayers Prostration of Forgetfulness
SESSION 19 Forbidden Times to Pray Congregational Prayer
SESSION 20 Joining and Shortening Prayers
SESSION 21 Friday Prayer
SESSION 22 Eclipse Prayer Drought Prayer
SESSION 23 Prayer of Peril Dress
SESSION 24 Washing and Shrouding the Deceased Funeral Prayer  Burial and Condolences
SESSION 25 Kinds of Zakatable Wealth Conditions of Zakat On Livestock
SESSION 26 Conditions of Other Kinds of Zakat Camels Cattle and Sheep
SESSION 27 Paying Zakat Jointly Zakat on Money Zakat on Crops
SESSION 28 Zakat on Trade Goods, Mines, and Treasure Zakat al-Fitr
SESSION 29 Zakat Recipients
SESSION 30 Integrals of Fasting Matters That Invalidate the Fast Sunna Matters While Fasting
SESSION 31 Unlawful Days to Fast Major Expiation Fidya
SESSION 32 Itikaf 
SESSION 33 Conditions For Obligation of Hajj Integrals of Hajj and Umra
SESSION 34 Wajibat of Hajj and Umra Sunnas of Hajj and Umra
SESSION 35 Matters Unlawful in Pilgrim Sanctity
SESSION 36 Kinds of Hajj Expiations
 

What You Will Learn

  • Develop the skill of reading the mutunshuruh, and hawashi of the Muslim scholarly tradition
  • Deepen your understanding of traditional sacred law according to the Shafi‘i school
  • Learn the detailed rulings of water, tanning, containers, wudu, using the bathroom, ghusl, wiping over khuffs, tayammum, wudu with bandages and casts, najasa, and menstruation
  • The rules, conditions, integrals, invalidators of the prayer, along with many other types of prayer
  • The rules, conditions, integrals, invalidators of the zakat, fasting and Hajj.
  • Learn how to apply traditional sacred law to modern situations

About the Course Text

Matn Abi Shuja‘ is the most popular primer for students of the Shafi‘i school. Its importance can be measured by the dozens of commentaries and glosses that have been written on it over the centuries since it was written. This course is a contemporary explanation of its most commonly-studied commentary, Fath al-Qarib al-Mujib by Shaykh Muhammad b. Qasim al-Ghazzi (d. 918 AH / 1512 CE). Shaykh Muhammad b. Qasim al-Ghazzi was a late scholar of the Shafi‘i school who lived and taught in Egypt. His teachers included the great Shaykh al-Islam Zakariyya al-Ansari, who was the teacher the major authorities of the Shafi‘i school. Fath al-Qarib (or Sharh Ibn Qasim, as it is popularly known) is an integral part of Shafi‘i curricula worldwide. It is particularly important because it was the subject of a hashiya (gloss) by the rector of al-Azhar in his time, Shaykh Ibrahim al-Bajuri (1276 AH / 1860 CE), may Allah Most High have mercy on him, which is one of the most important books in the Shafi‘i school. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
36 Lessons 22 hrs 19 mins

Course

Haddad's Book of Assistance: Complete Guidance for Turning to Allah

Introduction The goal of all sacred knowledge is to aid you on your journey of self-improvement as you make your way through this life into the afterlife. This series of three courses succinctly summarizes the stages of this spiritual journey and its most important milestones, such as certainty in the afterlife, the stages of spiritual development, presence of heart in acts of worship, good character with other people, and si...

Introduction

The goal of all sacred knowledge is to aid you on your journey of self-improvement as you make your way through this life into the afterlife. This series of three courses succinctly summarizes the stages of this spiritual journey and its most important milestones, such as certainty in the afterlife, the stages of spiritual development, presence of heart in acts of worship, good character with other people, and sincerity, gratitude, and love of God, all in the 32 short chapters of a masterpiece of Islamic spirituality, The Book of Assistance. This first part focusses on how to use sacred knowledge to nurture your soul. 

Curricular Context

  • Complete Level One before taking this course

Course Outline

Lesson 1  Abridged Biography of Imam al-Haddad
Lesson 2 Introduction (Part 1)
Lesson 3 Introduction (Part 2)
Lesson 4 On Certainty – Chapter 1
Lesson 5 On Intention – Chapter 2
Lesson 6 On Vigilance – Chapter 3
Lesson 7 On the Inner and Outer Self – Chapter 4
Lesson 8 On Regular Devotions (Part 1) – Chapter 5
Lesson 9 On Regular Devotions (Part 2) – Chapter 5
Lesson 10 On Reciting the Qur’an – Chapter 6
Lesson 11 On Acquiring Knowledge – Chapter 7
Lesson 12 On Remembrance – Chapter 8
Lesson 13 On Reflection (Part 1) – Chapter 9
Lesson 14 On Reflection (Part 2) – Chapter 9
Lesson 15 On Following the Book and the Sunna – Chapter 10
Lesson 16 On Doctrine – Chapter 11
Lesson 17 On Religious Obligations – Chapter 12
Lesson 18 On Cleanliness – Chapter 13
Lesson 19 On Following the Sunna (Part 1) – Chapter 14
Lesson 20 On Following the Sunna (Part 2) – Chapter 14
Lesson 21 On Conduct in Mosques and the Ritual Prayer – Chapters 15 & 16
Lesson 22 On Prayer in Congregation – Chapter 17
Lesson 23 On Zakat – Chapter 18
Lesson 24 On Fasting – Chapter 19
Lesson 25 On Pilgrimage (Chapter 20)
Lesson 26 On Scrupulousness (Chapter 21)
Lesson 27 On Enjoining Good and Forbidding Evil (Chapter 22)
Lesson 28 On Social Duties (Chapter 23)
Lesson 29 On Kindness and Charity (Chapter 24)
Lesson 30 On Counsel (Chapter 25)
Lesson 31 On Salutations and a Salutary Opinion (Chapter 26)
Lesson 32 On Repentance, Hope and Fear (Chapter 27)
Lesson 33 On Patience and Gratitude (Chapters 28 & 29)
Lesson 34 On Renunciation (Chapter 30)
Lesson 35 On Reliance on God (Chapter 31)
Lesson 36 On Divine Love and Contentment (Chapter 32)
What You Will Learn:
  • Learn how to turn this world into a journey to your afterlife
  • Learn the key terms of the science of Islamic spirituality
  • Learn what it means to have good character with people
  • Learn how to turn away from this world and focus on Allah Most High
  • Appreciate the depth of the Muslim spiritual tradition

About the Course Text

The course is an exposition of The Book of Assistance by the great scholar, saint, and renewer of the twelfth Islamic century, Imam ‘Abdullah b. ‘Alawi al-Haddad [link to: https://www.amazon.com/Sufi-Sage-Arabia-al-Haddad-Spiritual/dp/188775265X](d. 1132 AH / 1720 CE). Imam al-Haddad’s profound mastery of the sacred sciences was condensed into this masterpiece, in which he maps out various acts of devotion and the spiritual path in 32 succinct chapters. Long considered a summary of Ghazali’s seminal Ihya’ ‘Ulum al-Din, and translated from its original Arabic into Malay, Swahili, and English, this short treatise has been used as a manual of practical spirituality by Muslims all over the world ever since it was written. For a summary of the book and this course, watch Shaykh Yahya Rhodus’ introduction [ link to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0W7Neu4TirE ] "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
24 Lessons 15 hrs 43 mins

Course

Abu Shuja's Matn: On Marriage, Transactions, and Public Law

Introduction This course will cover the details of financial transactions, inheritance, marriage, divorce, child custody, injurious crimes, fixed Sharia punishments, hunting and halal slaughtering of animals, oaths and vows, and court proceedings according to the Shafi’i School of Islamic jurisprudence.  It will cover the who can undertake a financial contract, what can be sold, and various details of a wide number of cont...

Introduction

This course will cover the details of financial transactions, inheritance, marriage, divorce, child custody, injurious crimes, fixed Sharia punishments, hunting and halal slaughtering of animals, oaths and vows, and court proceedings according to the Shafi’i School of Islamic jurisprudence.  It will cover the who can undertake a financial contract, what can be sold, and various details of a wide number of contracts like hiring, agency, companies, and investments. The course also goes over the various shares in inheritance, its conditions and execution, and other related matters. There will also be some detail on polygamy, the Islamic juristic and political structure, and jus ad bellum and jus in bello.

Curricular Context

  • Before taking this course, take the Essentials of Worship (Shafi'i): Ba Fadl's The Short Abridgement Explained

  • Take this course before all courses in Level Three.

Course Outline

Session 1 Al Bai’ – Sales Transactions Al Riba – Interest Sales Cancellations
Session 2 Al Salam – Paying in Advance Al Rahn – Putting up Collateral Al Hajr – Suspension
Session 3 Al Sulh – Reconciliation Al Hawala – Transferring a Debt Al Dhaman – Guaranteeing Payment Al Kafalah - Guaranteeing a Person’s Appearance
Session 4 Al Sharika – Cooperative Partnerships Al Wakala – Authorisation Al Iqrar – Admissions
Session 5 Al ‘Ariyyah – Lending Items Al Ghasb – Wrongfully Taken Property Al Shufa’ – Preemption
Session 6 Al Qirad – Profit Sharing Venture Al Musaqah – Watering Crops for a Stipulated Portion Al Ijarah – Renting Goods and Hiring Services
Session 7 Al Ja’alah – Job Wages Al Mukhabara – Sharecropping Ihya al Mawat – Regenerating Uninhibited Lands Water Rights and Access
Session 8 Al Waqf – Endowments Al Hiba – Gifts Al Luqata – Lost and Found
Session 9 Al Laqit – The Foundling Al Wadi’ – Deposits for Safekeeping Al Wasiyah – Bequests
Session 10 Al Fara’id (Inheritance) – Introduction Male Inheritors Female Inheritors Those Who Always Inherit Those Who Never Inherit Al ‘Asabat – Universal Inheritors Al Furud – Fixed Shares Al Hajb – Elimination Shares of Brothers and Sisters
Session 11 Al Nikah (Marriage) – Introduction Looking at the Opposite Sex The Integrals of the Marriage Contract Al Khitba – Marriage Proposals Al Ijbar – Compelling Women to Marry Unmarriageable Women
Session 12 Spousal Defects Permitting Annulment Al Sadaq – The Wife’s Marriage Payment Al Walimah – The Wedding Feast
Session 13 Conjugal rights;  divorce and related issues;
Session 14 Child custody and financial support.
Session 15 Blood money
Session 16 Fixed Sharia punishments
Session 17 Jihad: Jus ad bellum and jus in bello
Session 18 Jihad: Jus post bellum
Session 19 Hunting and halal slaughter
Session 20 Competitions and Entertainment
Session 21 Oaths and Vows
Session 22 Caliphate
Session 23 Court proceedings
Session 24 Manumission
What You Will Learn:
  • The technical side of the vast majority of financial and familial relations that a Muslim will get involved in his/her life.
  • the various types of sale, how “interest” can be avoided in sales and currency exchange, the various forms of cancelling a sales contract, forward sales, and debt transfers.
  •  The concept of financial liability and legal liability it discussed along with various forms of investing money in a halal way.
  • Other key topics include charitable engagements, and who should get married, and how it should be done from beginning to end.
  •  The details of the shares inherited from one family members are explained, those one inherits from and those one does not, and how the shares can vary based on the combinations of living heirs.
  • How an Islamic marriage is terminated, and what the financial obligations are towards one’s family members.

  • How Islam joins between the spirit and the letter of the Sacred Law

  • How Islam promotes law and order

  • How flexible Sharia law can be

  • What valid oaths and vows are

  • How Islamic law fits into the current political climate

About the Course Text

This course is an explanation of Matn Abi Shuja’ , written by the learned and pious Shafi‘i scholar from Basra, Ahmad ibn al Hussein al-Asfahani (d. 500’s AH / 1100’s CE), more famously known as, Abu Shuja‘. Abu Shuja‘ taught the Shafi‘i school for 40 years in Basra, working as a scholar and judge, before retiring at the end of his life to Medina, where he worked as a servant at the mosque of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). His Matn Abi Shuja‘, a short introduction to the Shafi‘i school of sacred law, is one of the most blessed textbooks of the school–although it was written almost a millennium ago, it remains an integral part of Shafi‘i fiqh curricula all over the world, and has been the subject of dozens of commentaries and super-commentaries ever since it was written all the way down to the present age. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
24 Lessons 15 hrs 40 mins

Course

Abu Shuja's Matn: On Worship (Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat and Hajj)

Introduction Every human action has a divine command associated with it, making it obligatory, recommended, permissible, offensive, or unlawful. We cannot infer these commands with our minds–the only way to learn about them is by learning them from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). The goal of the science of sacred law (fiqh) is to summarize what the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) taught us abo...

Introduction

Every human action has a divine command associated with it, making it obligatory, recommended, permissible, offensive, or unlawful. We cannot infer these commands with our minds–the only way to learn about them is by learning them from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). The goal of the science of sacred law (fiqh) is to summarize what the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) taught us about all human actions, whether related to worship, trade, investment, food, hunting, oaths, entertainment, marriage, divorce, inheritance, legal procedures, or public policy.  This four-part series of courses will introduce you to the science of sacred law as it relates to all aspects of life, focussing in this first part on the rules of purification and prayer.
Curricular Context
    • Complete level One before taking this course
    • Take this course before taking the second part of this course.

Course Outline

Session 1 Biography of Author; Author’s Introduction; The Five Rulings; Personal vs.Communal Obligatory Knowledge
Session 2 Purification;  Integrals & Nullifiers of Ablution; Etiquettes of the Washroom
Session 3 Major Ritual Impurity
Session 4 Wiping Over Socks; Dry Ablution; Types of Filth
Session 5 Rulings Related to the Different Types of Bleeding for Women
Session 6 The Prayer – Times; Sunnah Prayer; Conditions & Integrals
Session 7 Sunnahs & Nullifiers of the Prayer
Session 8 Prostration of Forgetfulness; Forbidden Times to Pray; The Congregational Prayer
Session 9 Joining Prayers & the Friday Prayer
Session 10 Special Prayers for Particular Circumstances
Session 11 Clothing
Session 12 Rites of the Deceased & the Funeral Prayer
Session 13 Zakat on Wealth Zakatable wealth Conditions for obligation of Zakat
Session 14 Zakat on livestock
Session 15 Zakat on gold and silver Zakat on agriculture
Session 16 Zakat on trade Zakat on mines Zakat on buried treasure
Session 17 Zakat al Fitr Deserving Recipients Distributing Zakat
Session 18 Fasting Obligation Integrals Nullifiers
Session 19 Sunnan of fasting Disliked acts during Fasting Sunna Fasts
Session 20 Unlawful Days of Fasting Expiations Excuses for not Fasting
Session 21 Itikaf (spiritual retreat) Integrals Nullifiers
Session 22 Hajj Conditions for obligation Integrals Necessary acts
Session 23 Sunnas of Hajj and Umrah Prohibitions in Ihram
Session 24 Omission of Pilgrim rites Expiations
What You Will Learn:
  • Describe the historical development of the Shafi‘i school
  • Learn the rules of purification, prayer, clothing, funeral rites, fasting, zakat, and Hajj
  • Memorize the definitions of key terms related to the rules of purification, prayer, clothing, funeral rites, fasting, zakat, and Hajj
  • Appreciate the depth of the Muslim scholarly tradition

About the Course Text

This course is an explanation of Matn Abi Shuja’ , written by the learned and pious Shafi‘i scholar from Basra, Ahmad ibn al Hussein al-Asfahani (d. 500’s AH / 1100’s CE), more famously known as, Abu Shuja‘. Abu Shuja‘ taught the Shafi‘i school for 40 years in Basra, working as a scholar and judge, before retiring at the end of his life to Medina, where he worked as a servant at the mosque of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). His Matn Abi Shuja‘, a short introduction to the Shafi‘i school of sacred law, is one of the most blessed textbooks of the school–although it was written almost a millennium ago, it remains an integral part of Shafi‘i fiqh curricula all over the world, and has been the subject of dozens of commentaries and super-commentaries ever since it was written all the way down to the present age. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2

Course

Usul al-Fiqh: How Islamic Law is Derived and Interpreted: Juwayni's Waraqat

Introduction The science of legal theory (usul al-fiqh) studies how to infer the rulings of Sacred Law directly from the Qur’an and sunna. This course will clear your confusions over (1) the role of scholarly consensus (ijma’) in preserving Islam; (2) how the Sunna of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) was preserved; (3) and the role of human reason in interpreting the Qur’an and Sunna. Since the Qur’a...

Introduction The science of legal theory (usul al-fiqh) studies how to infer the rulings of Sacred Law directly from the Qur’an and sunna. This course will clear your confusions over (1) the role of scholarly consensus (ijma’) in preserving Islam; (2) how the Sunna of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) was preserved; (3) and the role of human reason in interpreting the Qur’an and Sunna. Since the Qur’an and Sunna are both in Arabic, some knowledge of Arabic, however, is a highly recommended prerequisite to this course. But the instructor makes every effort to explain things in a way that can be understood by English speakers without any knowledge of Arabic
Curricular Context
  • This is a second-level course

  • Complete Step One before taking this course

Course Outline
   Session 1 Lesson 1 -Imam al-Juwayni and the Waraqat Lesson 2 - Usul, Fiqh, and Usul al-Fiqh Lesson 3 - What is Fiqh?
   Session 2 Lesson 4 - The Rulings of Sacred Law Lesson 5 - Probabilistic Inference Lesson 6 - What is Usul al-Fiqh?
   Session 3 Lesson 7 - What is Speech and Why is it Important? Lesson 8 - Kinds of Speech in Legal Inference Lesson 9 - Literal and Figurative Speech
   Session 4 Lesson 10 - How to Discern Figurative Speech Lesson 11 - Four Examples of Figurative Speech
   Session 5 Lesson 12 - Commands, Prohibitions, and Moral Responsibility Lesson 13 - How to Fulfill One’s Moral Responsibility
   Session 6  Lesson 14 - Who is Morally Responsible? Lesson 15-  Is a Prohibited Action Also Invalid?
   Session 7 Lesson 16 - What are Inclusive Expressions? Lesson 17 - Excluding from Inclusive Expressions
   Session 8 Lesson 18 - Excluding by the Sunna Lesson 19 - Excluding by Analogy Lesson 20 - Excluding by Revelatory Context
   Session 9 Lesson 21 - The Different Strengths of Linguistic Signification
   Session 10 Lesson 22 - The Figurative Interpretation of Probabilistic Expressions Lesson 23 - Why Anthropomorphists are Mistaken
   Session 11  Lesson 24 - Prophets are Divinely Protected from Sin Lesson 25 - What can be inferred from the fact that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) did something?
   Session 12 Lesson 26 - Prophetic Approval Lesson 27 - What can be inferred from the fact that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not do something?
Session 13   Lesson 27 – What can be inferred from the fact that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not do something?
Session 14   Lesson 28 – Abrogation is Possible and it Actually Happened Lesson 29 – Abrogation of Qur’anic Commands and Prohibitions 
Session 15     Lesson 30 – Kinds of New Rulings After Abrogation Lesson 31 – Abrogation by the Qur’an and Abrogation by the Sunna 
Session 16   Lesson 32 – Evidentiary Conflict and Reconciliation
Session 17   Lesson 33 – Scholarly Consensus of the Muslim Umma is Never Wrong Lesson 34 – Scholarly Consensus is the Impenetrable Fortress of Islam 
Session 18   Lesson 35 – Explicit and Implicit Scholarly Consensus Lesson 36 – Ijtihad of a Companion  
Session 19   Lesson 37 – Isnad is the Distinction of the Muslim Umma Lesson 38 – Kinds of Transmitted Reports  
Session 20   Lesson 39 – Mursal Hadiths Lesson 40 – How Hadiths Were Transmitted 
Session 21   Lesson 41 – Human Reason and the Sacred Law Lesson 42 – Kinds of Legal Analogy 
Session 22 Lesson 43 – The Initially Presumed Ruling of Sacred Law Lesson 44 – The Presumption of Continuity 
Session 23   Lesson 45 – The Precedence-Order of Legal Evidence
Session 24    Lesson 46 – The Conditions of Ijtihad Lesson 47 – Following Qualified Scholarship Lesson 48 – Is Every Mujtahid Correct?
What You Will Learn:
  • Explain what Islamic legal theory is and why it needs to be studied
  • Learn how to interpret the Qur’an and Sunna
  • Memorize the definitions of key terms in the science of Islamic legal theory
  • Appreciate the depth of scholarship of all four Sunni schools of Islamic jurisprudence
  • Apply the techniques of Islamic legal theory to gain clarity on contemporary religious debates about literalism, ijtahad and taqlid, and bid‘a

About the Course Text

This course is a contemporary explanation of al-Waraqat, a primer on Islamic legal theory (usul al-fiqh) by Imam al-Haramayn al-Juwayni (d. 478 A.H. / 1085 C.E.). Imam al-Juwayni was an imam (i.e., someone who is taken as an exemplar) of the Islamic sciences in the fullest sense of the word: he authored multi-volume seminal works in Shafi‘i jurisprudence, Islamic theology, and Islamic legal theory, that became the basis for all future work in each science. His al-Waraqat is a short work that brings his vast scholarship in the science of Islamic legal theory down to the level of an absolute beginner. Ever since it was written almost a thousand years ago, students of the Shafi‘i, Maliki, and Hanbali schools have successfully used it to begin their study of Islamic legal theory. A translation of the course text is provided as part of the course materials. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
24 Lessons 70 hrs 31 mins

Course

Nawawi’s 40 Hadith: The Essentials Guidance of Islam

Introduction Learn to live the essence of the Prophet’s wisdom, blessings and peace be upon him. Curricular Context Complete Step One before taking this course What You Will Learn: Precious definitions and explanations of core Islamic concepts Central principles of faith, law, worship, life, and spirituality Contextualize this Prophetic guidance to our contemporary lives The spiritual dimensions of th...

Introduction

Learn to live the essence of the Prophet’s wisdom, blessings and peace be upon him.

Curricular Context

  • Complete Step One before taking this course
What You Will Learn:
  • Precious definitions and explanations of core Islamic concepts
  • Central principles of faith, law, worship, life, and spirituality
  • Contextualize this Prophetic guidance to our contemporary lives
  • The spiritual dimensions of these “comprehensive words”
  • How to turn to Allah and seek His closeness through guidance
  • The essence and reality of Prophetic guidance

About the Course Text

Do you want to understand the most foundational hadiths of the Prophet, blessings and peace be upon him? This course explains the essence of Prophetic wisdom and guidance gathered in Imam Nawawi’s 40 Hadiths. This course will help nurture your faith, deepen religious understanding, increase in love of the Beloved Prophet (peace be upon him), and gain clarity on how to live the essence of his wisdom. In this in-depth course, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani explains Imam Nawawi’s 40 Hadith, using classical commentaries and a wide range of reference works in Islamic scholarship. This course brings out the meanings, beauty, and guidance in these central Prophetic sayings, which Imam Nawawi selected as being hadiths which “the message of Islam revolves around.” "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
24 Lessons 41 hrs 05 mins

Course

Tafsir of Great Suras: Yasin, Mulk, Waq'ia and Kahf: Linguistic and Thematic Analysis

Introduction The Messenger of Allah, Allah bless him and give him peace, greatly emphasized the recital of sura al Kahf and sura al Waqi’a, due to their significance. The former is a guide to staying safe from the various tribulations we are faced with in this life. It looks at the matters which shake people’s faith, and how they should be dealt with. Sura al Kahf also discusses the matters which delude people and turn t...

Introduction

The Messenger of Allah, Allah bless him and give him peace, greatly emphasized the recital of sura al Kahf and sura al Waqi’a, due to their significance. The former is a guide to staying safe from the various tribulations we are faced with in this life. It looks at the matters which shake people’s faith, and how they should be dealt with.

Sura al Kahf also discusses the matters which delude people and turn them away from God - guiding us to the way of safety. Blessings, wealth, knowledge, and power are all temptations which can turn people away from the Afterlife.

Consequently, Sura al Waqi’a provides a powerful message to every one of humanity about the Afterlife. The Elite learn of their great rewards, as do the rank and file of the believers. The sura also discusses those to succumbed to the temptations and chose not to believe.

Surat Yasin and Surat al Mulk: A Linguistic and Thematic Analysis of the chapters which focus on proving Allah's oneness, the prophethood of Muhammad, the Resurrection, Allah's omnipotence, and all-encompassing generosity.

Curricular Context

About the Course Text

This course is based on a number of classical and contemporary Qurʾanic commentaries, dictionaries, and related works. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 4
24 Sessions 29 hrs 49 mins

Course

Theology: Taftazani's Sharh Al-Aqa'id Al-Nasafiyya Explained - Critical Investigations in Theology, First Principles, and the Nuances of Theology

Introduction This is a series of courses that unpack the questions (masa’il) of Taftazani’s pithy Sharh al-’Aqa’id al-Nasafiyya, arguably the most important textbook ever written  in the science of Islamic theology. These courses explain the intellectual context in which the book’s questions are set, and then apply those questions to contemporary theological problems, with a special focus on modern science and occa...

Introduction

This is a series of courses that unpack the questions (masa’il) of Taftazani’s pithy Sharh al-’Aqa’id al-Nasafiyya, arguably the most important textbook ever written  in the science of Islamic theology. These courses explain the intellectual context in which the book’s questions are set, and then apply those questions to contemporary theological problems, with a special focus on modern science and occasional digressions into Western philosophy. Take this course to to understand what the science of kalam is; the historical circumstances that led to its development; who the Mu’tazilites were and why they are important; who the falasifa were and why they are important; what philosophical skepticism is, what motivates it, its relevance to kalam, and how it should be tackled; what human knowledge is and how to distinguish truth from falsehood; the epistemological value of sensation, rational inference, historical transmission, and revelation; and the relation of all of these topics to non-religious historical accounts of Islamic theology, cognitive psychology, and evolutionary accounts of human development.

Curricular Context

This is a Level Four Course

  • Before taking this course, take all courses in Level  Three, especially Beliefs: Bajuri’s Commentary on the Sanusiyya Explained - Deeper Understanding of the Proofs and Key Issues of Theology

  • Take this course before all courses in Step Five.

Course Outline

Session 1 Introduction to ‘Ilm al-Kalam, al-Nasafi, and al-Taftazani — pp. 3-8 Kinds of Hukm + Why the Sahaba Didn’t Need Kalam — pp. 9-11 Why the Sahaba Didn’t Need Fiqh + Why Kalam and Fiqh Were Documented — pp. 11-12 
Session 2 Fiqh, Usul, and Kalam — p. 12 Names of Kalam and the Mu’tazili Mihna — pp. 12-14 LESSON RESOURCE: Mas’ala khalq al-qur’an by Shaykh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghodda
Session 3 History of Early Kalam (audio only) LESSON RESOURCE: al-Madhahib al-tawhidiyya by Shaykh Muhammad Said Ramadan al
Session 4 Early Kalam — pp. 16-17 Late Kalam — p. 17 LESSON RESOURCE: al-Mawaqif fi ‘ilm al-kalam by ‘Adud al-Din al-Iji  (pdf present in the same folder as the recordings)
Session 5 The Dangers of Kalam — pp. 23-25 (1)
Session 6 We Have Objective Knowledge of Real Things (haqa’iq al-ashya’ thabita) — pp. 25-29
Session 7 Philosophical Skepticism (safsata) — pp. 29-30
Session 8 Knowledge (‘ilm) — pp. 30-32
Session 10 The Conventional Causes (asbab) of Human Knowledge — pp. 32-35 Knowledge — pp. 32-35 Sensation (al-hawass) — pp. 35-39
Session 11 Mass-Transmission (tawatur) — pp. 39-40
Session 12 The Mind (‘aql)— pp. 43-45 Experiential Knowledge (ilham) — pp. 45-46
Session 13 Natural Philosophy and Modern Science
Session 14 The Natural Philosophy of Falsafa The Universe According to Falsafa, Kalam, and Science
Session 15 Arguments For And Against Medieval Atomism
Session 16 Properties in Falsafa, Kalam, and Science
Session 17 The Kalam Perspective on Arguments For the Existence of God in Modern Philosophy
Session 18 The Kalam Argument (1): Properties Began to Exist The Kalam Argument (2): Physical Objects Began to Exist
Session 19 Responses to the Falasifa’s Objections to the Kalam Argument
Session 20 Scientific Evidence for the Beginning of the Universe The Kalam Cosmological Argument in Modern Philosophy
Session 21 Contemporary Objections to the Kalam Cosmological Argument  
Session 22 The Impossibility of Infinite Regress and its Relation to the Kalam Argument
Session 23 Allah Most High’s Oneness (1)
Session 24 Allah Most High’s Oneness (2) Allah Most High’s Beginninglessness
What You Will Learn:
  • Use the epistemology from Part 1 of this course to prove the existence of God

  • Respond to medieval and modern objections against the existence of God

  • Describe the cosmology and metaphysics  of the falasifa and their role in the development of kalam

  • Learn when to update theological issues in light of modern science and when to use theological issues to correct modern science

  • Navigate contemporary debates over the existence of God using traditional Islamic theology

About the Course Text

For centuries, Taftazani’s Sharh al-’Aqa’id has been a standard and indispensable part of curricula in traditional institutions of learning all over the Muslim world. No other textbook in any of the Islamic sciences has as many scholarly glosses (hawashi) as it does. The importance of a textbook can be judged by the number of glosses that have been written on it. The innumerable glosses on Sharh al-’Aqa’id by scholars in the Ottoman Empire, in al-Azhar, in the Indian Subcontinent, and elsewhere make it the most important textbook of Islamic theology ever written.

The author, Sa‘d al-Din al-Taftazani (d. 792/1390), is famous for his sharp mind, pithy expressions, and his unwavering commitment to an evidence-based approach to knowledge, never hesitating to discuss questions that were never discussed before, nor to correct mistakes that were made by authors who came before him. A couple of decades after his death, Ibn Hajar al-’Asqalani (d. 852/1449) reported that Taftazani’s books were sought everywhere and scholars all over the world competed to write commentaries on them. He was a prolific scholar--his Sharh al-’Aqa’id is a mainstay of every curriculum in Islamic theology, his Mukhtasar al-Ma‘ani a mainstay of every curriculum in Arabic eloquence, his Tahdhib al-Mantiq a mainstay of every curriculum in Islamic logic, and his Hashiya on al-Iji’s commentary on Ibn al-Hajib’s Mukhtasar a mainstay of curricula in Islamic legal theory.

"Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2

Course

Mawsili's Mukhtar: On Worship: Understanding Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat, and Hajj [Elective]

Introduction Gain a deeper understanding of worship according to the Hanafi school of jurisprudence. Course Outline  Lesson 1 (Introduction to the Course and Purification) Lesson 1a - Introduction to Book and Author Lesson 1b - Author's Introduction Lesson 1c - Introduction to Purification & Wudu Lesson 1d - Sunnas of Wudu Lesson 1e - Nullifiers of Wudu Lesson 2 (A Look at Water, Wells & Tay...

Introduction

Gain a deeper understanding of worship according to the Hanafi school of jurisprudence. Course Outline  Lesson 1 (Introduction to the Course and Purification)
  • Lesson 1a - Introduction to Book and Author
  • Lesson 1b - Author's Introduction
  • Lesson 1c - Introduction to Purification & Wudu
  • Lesson 1d - Sunnas of Wudu
  • Lesson 1e - Nullifiers of Wudu
Lesson 2 (A Look at Water, Wells & Tayammum)
  • Lesson 2a - Introduction to Water
  • Lesson 2b - The Rulings on Well Water
  • Lesson 2b - The Rulings on Well Water
Lesson 3 (The Ruling on Khuffs and an Introduction to Hayd)
  • Lesson 3a - The Ruling on Khuffs
  • Lesson 3b - Introduction to Hayd
  • Lesson 3c - Continuation on Hayd
Lesson 4 (Continuation on Istihada, Nifas and the Definition of Najasa)
  • Lesson 4a - Istihada
  • Lesson 4b - Purification from Filth (Part 1)
  • Lesson 4c - Purification from Filth (Part 2)
Lesson 5 (Review Session)
  • Lesson 5a - Review of Purification
  • Lesson 5b - Recommendations
  • Lesson 5c - The Etiquette of Seekers
Lesson 6 (Introduction to Prayer)
  • Lesson 6a - Introduction to the Prayer
  • Lesson 6b - Prayer Times
  • Lesson 6c - The Disliked Times for Prayer
  • Lesson 6d - The Adhan for Prayer
Lesson 7 (The Conditions & Integrals of the Prayer)
  • Lesson 7a - The Conditions of Prayer (Part 1)
  • Lesson 7b - The Conditions of Prayer (Part 2)
  • Lesson 7c - The Integrals of the Prayer
Lesson 8 (The Description of the Prayer)
  • Lesson 8a - Description of the Prayer (Part 1)
  • Lesson 8b - Description of the Prayer (Part 2)
  • Lesson 8c - The Witr Prayer
Lesson 9 (Congregating for Prayer)
  • Lesson 9a - On Prayer Recitation
  • Lesson 9b - Congregation for Prayer (Part 1)
  • Lesson 9c - Congregation for Prayer (Part 2)
Lesson 10 (Actions to Avoid in Prayer & Supererogatory Prayers)
  • Lesson 10a - Disliked Actions in Prayer
  • Lesson 10b - Actions Which Invalidate the Prayer
  • Lesson 10c - Missed Prayers
  • Lesson 10d - Sunna & Nafl Prayers
Lesson 11 (Forgetfulness in Prayer and the Tarawih Prayer)
  • Lesson 11a - The Tarawih Prayer
  • Lesson 11b - The Forgetfulness Prostration
  • Lesson 11c - Forgetting in Prayer
Lesson 12 (Prayer of the Sick, the Traveller, & the Prostration for Recital)
  • Lesson 12a - Prostration for Recital
  • Lesson 12b - Prayer of the Sick
  • Lesson 12c - Prayer of the Traveller
Lesson 13 (The Friday Prayer & the Eid Prayer)
  • Lesson 13a - The Friday Prayer
  • Lesson 13b - The Eid Prayer
Lesson 14 (The Fear Prayer and Prayer at the Kaaba)
  • Lesson 14a - The Fear Prayer
  • Lesson 14b - Prayer at the Kaaba
Lesson 15 (Regarding the Funeral Prayer and Burial Practices)
  • Lesson 15a - Funerary Practices
  • Lesson 15b - The Funeral Prayer
  • Lesson 15c - The Burial
Lesson 16 (Introduction to Zakat)
  • Lesson 16 - Introduction to Zakat
Lesson 17 (The Rulings on Mining)
  • Lesson 17a - Gold & Produce
  • Lesson 17b - Mining & Treasures
Lesson 18 On Giving Zakat
  • Lesson 18a - Outlets for Zakat
  • Lesson 18b - Zakat al-Fitr
Lesson 19 Introduction to Fasting
  • Lesson 19a - Introduction to Fasting
  • Lesson 19b - Moonsighting
Lesson 20 Invalidating One's Fast & Excuses for not Fasting; A Brief Look at I`tikaf
  • Lesson 20a - Invalidating the Fast
  • Lesson 20b - Excuses for not Fasting
  • Lesson 20c - I`tikaf
Lesson 21 Journey of a Lifetime: Hajj (Part 1)
  • Lesson 21a - The Duty of Hajj
  • Lesson 21b - Entering Ihram
  • Lesson 21c - Entering Mecca
Lesson 22 Journey of a Lifetime: Hajj (Part 2)
  • Lesson 22a - Safa and Marwa
  • Lesson 22b - Obligatory Tawaf
  • Lesson 22c - A Brief Look at Umra
Lesson 23 Journey of a Lifetime: Hajj (Part 3)
  • Lesson 23a - Tamattu
  • Lesson 23b - Qiran
  • Lesson 23c - Contraventions (Principles)
Lesson 24 Journey of a Lifetime: Hajj (Part 4)
  • Lesson 24a - Contraventions (Rulings)
  • Lesson 24b - Hunting Contraventions
  • Lesson 24c - Preventatives from Hajj
What You Will Learn:
  • Water, wells, and dry ablution
  • Menstruation, bleeding, their types and rulings
  • Prayer, its integrals and conditions
  • Prayer in congregation and supererogatory prayer
  • Actions to avoid in prayer, forgetfulness, tarawih
  • The prayer of the sick and the traveller
  • The Friday and Eid prayers, the prayer of fear, and prayer at the Ka’ba
  • The funeral prayer and burial practices
  • Zakat and its rulings
  • Fasting and its rulings
  • The Hajj and its rulings
Course Format: 24  downloadable lessons, a monthly live session.

About the Course Text

This is the first course in the Islamic Law (Hanafi) for Seekers series. The students will gain a necessary and detailed understanding of Islamic Jurisprudence (fiqh) related to the acts of worship, i.e. prayer, zakat, fasting, and the pilgrimage. The course is based on Imam al-Mawsuli’s great primer on Hanafi fiqh, al-Mukhtar, and its commentary, al-Ikhtiyar li-Ta’lil Masa’il al-Mukhtar. This expansive course will cover all the chapters on worship in al-Mukhtar. This intensive course serves to provide a proper understanding of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) of worship within the Hanafī school based on Imam Mawsuli’s al-Mukhtar. Imam Mawsuli’s influential book is one of the four relied upon primers of the Hanafi school of law, which summarize the original positions of the founder of the school: Imam Abu Hanifa, may Allah have mercy on him, and the transmitted position of the madhhab. This course is intended for seekers of knowledge and is an excellent preparation for the study of more advanced texts in jurisprudence such as Imam al-Marghiyani’s al-Hidaya. An English translation of al-Mukhtar will be provided, along with the full Arabic text of Imam Mawsuli’s own commentary: al-Ikhtiyar li-Ta’lil Masa’il al-Mukhtar. Imam Mawsuli’s commentary focuses on the differences of opinion within the Hanafi School and the legal discussion between Imam Abu Hanifa and his two students. The English lessons are based on al-Ikhtiyar and other leading Hanafi works. Imam Abdullah bin Mahmud bin Mawdud al-Mawsuli al-Hanafi (599-683AH) was born in Mosul in Northern Iraq and studied Hanafi fiqh — among others — with Imam al-Hasidi in Damascus. He was known as the most distinguished Hanafi scholar of his age. He was a judge (qadi) in Kufa and later taught at the mosque of Imam Abu Hanifa in Baghdad, where he is also buried. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2

Course

Beliefs: Ghazali's Qawa'id al-Aqa'id - Understanding Beliefs, Proofs, and the Spiritual Cultivation of Faith [Elective]

Introduction Study Imam Ghazali’s Qawa‘id al-Aqa’id (Foundations of Islamic Belief). What You Will Learn:  The key principles and statements of Islamic Belief The relation between scholarly study and spiritual realization The importance of theology and its limitations The role of theology in the religious life Islamic beliefs and the core proofs The strongest arguments for mainstream Islamic theo...

Introduction

Study Imam Ghazali’s Qawa‘id al-Aqa’id (Foundations of Islamic Belief). What You Will Learn:
  •  The key principles and statements of Islamic Belief
  • The relation between scholarly study and spiritual realization
  • The importance of theology and its limitations
  • The role of theology in the religious life
  • Islamic beliefs and the core proofs
  • The strongest arguments for mainstream Islamic theology
Course Requirements:
  • Previous study of Islamic beliefs is recommended—such as the SeekersHub online course, Islamic Beliefs for Seekers: Dardir’s Kharida Explained

About the Course Text

This course covers one of the greatest intermediate-level summaries of mainstream Islamic beliefs: Book Two of Imam Ghazali’s Ihya, on the Foundations of Islamic Belief (Qawa‘id al-Aqa’id), in full. In Foundations of Islamic Belief, Imam Ghazali begins in Part One with a brief statement of Islamic beliefs. Many scholars considered this summary one of the greatest summaries of the key principles of Islamic belief ever written. In Part Two, Imam Ghazali explains how one learns and inculcates sound beliefs—and how faith is nurtured in the heart. He discusses a number of sensitive issues, including the relationship between the study of faith and the means of being spiritually-realized in the fruits of faith. He clarifies both the importance of the study of the science of theology, but also its limitations: its role, he argues, is to clarify, support, and defend sound beliefs; but faith itself is truly nurtured not through mere study but through the acts of turning to Allah in worship, devotion, remembrance, reflection, and acting on the guidance of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). In Part Three, Imam Ghazali covers an explanation of the Islamic belief covered in Part One. This serves as a commentary on Part One, and many central principles and key issues of Islamic beliefs are detailed and clarified. In Part Four, Imam Ghazali explains core proofs for the beliefs that have been presented in the Foundations of Islamic beliefs. He avoids getting into detailed debates, but presents what he considers the cleared, strongest, and most convincing arguments for sound, mainstream Islamic theology. The text is explained in English, but the full Arabic of Imam Ghazali’s work is read. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)  
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  • Level 2

Course

On Worship: Shurunbulali’s Nur al-Idah - In-Depth Study of Purification, Prayer, and Fasting [Elective]

Introduction Allah Most High says, “I have not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.” (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to increase your knowledge of the questions that worshippers face in their purity, prayer, and fasting, all in light of a comprehensive textbook of Hanafi law that students have used for centuries. This is the first of three parts. This part focuses on the detailed rule...

Introduction

Allah Most High says, “I have not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.” (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to increase your knowledge of the questions that worshippers face in their purity, prayer, and fasting, all in light of a comprehensive textbook of Hanafi law that students have used for centuries. This is the first of three parts. This part focuses on the detailed rules of purification (tahara), discussing issues of both ritual and physical purity.

Curricular Context

  • This is a Level Two elective course.
  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) and/or the Essentials of Worship courses

Course Outline

Lesson 1: Introduction the Hanafi school and the text Lesson 2: Author's Opening & Types of Water Lesson 3: Exercising One’s Judgement, Wells, and Cleaning the Private Parts of Filth (Istinja’) Lesson 4: Integrals of Wudu and Opening Sunnas Lesson 5:  Remaining Sunnas, Disliked Actions, and Legal categories of Wudu Lesson 6: Nullifiers of Wudu Lesson 7: The Major Ablution (Ghusl) Lesson 8: Dry Ablution (Tayammum) Lesson 9: Wiping Footgear and Casts; Basics of Menstruation Lesson 10: Menstruation, Chronic Excuses, and Physical Impurity Lesson 11: The Basis and Categories of Filth Lesson 12:  Filth and Its Removal Lesson 13: Introduction to Prayer and Its Times Lesson 14: Disliked Times and the Adhan Lesson 15: Obligations of the Prayer (1) Lesson 16: Obligations of Prayer (2) Lesson 17: Necessary Elements of the Prayer and Opening Sunnas Lesson 18: Sunnas, Adab, and Description of Standing Lesson 19: Completion of the Prayer and Conditions of Congregation Lesson 20: Congregational Prayer Lesson 21: Invocations after Prayer and Invalidators Lesson 22: Additional Invalidators and Introduction to Disliked Acts Lesson 23: Disliked Acts (1) Lesson 24: Disliked Acts (2) and Breaking the Prayer Lesson 25: Witr and Sunna Prayers Lesson 26: Voluntary Prayers and Praying on Modes of Transport Lesson 27:  Prayers in Exceptional Situations, Tarawih, and the Traveller Lesson 28: Prayer of the Sick Person, Expiation, and Make-ups Lesson 29: Catching the Congregation | The Forgetfulness Prostration Lesson 30: Prostration of Recital and the Friday Prayer Lesson 31: Sunnas of Friday; Eid and Eclipse Prayers Lesson 32: Prayers for Rain, Fear, and Funerals Lesson 33: Details on the Funeral Prayer, Carrying the Body, and Burial Lesson 34: Visiting Graves, Martyrs, and Fasting Lesson 35: Intention, Moon Sighting and Invalidators of the Fast Lesson 36: Completion of Fasting and the Devotional Retreat What You Will Learn:
  • Understand slavehood to Allah Most High and why it is important
  • Learn the rules of purification that are generally encountered
  • Memorize the detailed rules of wudu and ghusl, tayammum, removing filth, and the basic rulings of menstruation.
  • Learn the rules of prayer that are generally encountered
  • Memorize the obligatory, necessary, and sunna  elements of prayer at a higher level of detail
  • Learn the conditions, sunnas, and rulings of congregational prayer
  • Memorize a list of nearly twelve dozen invalidating or disliked actions in the prayer.
  • Appreciate the rigor of the science of Sacred Law (fiqh)
  • Learn the details of prayer and fasting that are generally encountered
  • Learn the rulings of witr and the sunna prayers
  • Learn the rulings related to prayer when travelling or sick
  • Learn the rulings related to the prostration of forgetfulness and the prostration of recital
  • Memorize the conditions for the validity and obligation of the Friday, Eid prayers, as well as the conditions for the khutba.
  • Learn the nullifiers of the fast and their practical consequences
  • Learn about the rulings related to vows and devotional retreat
  • Gain a grounding in the method and application of the Hanafi school

About the Course Text

This course is an explanation of Nur al-Idah (Light of Clarity), a detailed introduction to the rules of purity, prayer, and fasting authored by a leading authority of the Hanafi school, Abu’l-Ikhlas Hasan al-Shurunbulali (d. 1069 AH/ 1659 CE ). This text covers nearly every issue that arises in the course of these three acts of worship in a clear and comprehensive manner. It is for this reason that Nur al-Idah, along with its commentary Maraqi al-Falah, forms an essential part of nearly every traditional syllabus in Hanafi jurisprudence. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 3
12 Lessons 9 hrs 41 mins

Course

Ghazali's Minhaj al-Abidin - Understanding the Hurdles on the Path to Allah and How to Overcome Them

Introduction Widely considered to be Imam al-Ghazali's last book, Minhaj al-Abidin summarizes his teachings in an accessible manner, charting the pitfalls and obstacles to be overcome in order to draw closer to Allah Most High. Course Outline LESSON 1: Introduction to the Course (pp. 5-9) LESSON 2: Continuation on the Author’s Introduction (pp. 9-17) LESSON 3: The First Hurdle: The Hurdle of Knowledge (pp. 18...

Introduction

Widely considered to be Imam al-Ghazali's last book, Minhaj al-Abidin summarizes his teachings in an accessible manner, charting the pitfalls and obstacles to be overcome in order to draw closer to Allah Most High.

Course Outline

  • LESSON 1: Introduction to the Course (pp. 5-9)
  • LESSON 2: Continuation on the Author’s Introduction (pp. 9-17)
  • LESSON 3: The First Hurdle: The Hurdle of Knowledge (pp. 18-26)
  • LESSON 4: The First Hurdle: The Hurdle of Knowledge (pp. 26-32)
  • LESSON 5: The Second Hurdle: The Hurdle of Repentance (pp. 32-38)
  • LESSON 6: The Second Hurdle: The Hurdle of Repentance (pp. 38-43)
  • LESSON 7: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp. 44-51)
    • A) This World and all that it Contains
  • LESSON 8: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp. 51-59)
    • B) Your Fellow Creatures (khalq)
  • LESSON 9: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp. 59-68)
    • B) Your Fellow Creatures (khalq) Continued
  • LESSON 10: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp.68-79)
    • C) The Devil Shaytan
  • LESSON 11: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp.79-88)
    • D) The Lower Self (Nafs)
  • LESSON 12: The Third Hurdle: The Hurdle of the Impediments (pp.89-94)
    • D) The Lower Self (Nafs) Continued
Course Requirements: Students should take Beginning of Guidance (ISBGG10A/B) and Book of Assistance (ISKMG15A/B/C) before taking this course. Course Format: 12 prerecorded lessons and a monthly live session.

About the Course Text

Widely considered to be Imam al-Ghazali's last book, Minhaj al-Abidin summarizes his teachings in an accessible manner, charting the pitfalls and obstacles to be overcome in order to draw closer to Allah Most High. He dictated these words to a group of elect students and carefully advised them to resist hindrances such as fear and impairments such as conceit, in order to find salvation by sincerely turning to Allah Most High. This book is one of the important works that help the spiritual development of the believer. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 3
24 Sessions 64 hrs 43 mins

Course

Beliefs: Bajuri’s Commentary on the Sanusiyya Explained - Deeper Understanding of the Proofs and Key Issues of Theology

Introduction This is a traditional word-by-word explanation of a hashiya (gloss) on Shaykh al-Sanusi’s popular matn in Islamic theology, Umm al-Barahin. Hamza Karamali carefully works through the first half of the Hashiya in 68 recorded lessons, unpacking its meanings, and relating them to contemporary theological problems related to modern science, Western philosophy, and Wahhabi theology. These include the distincti...

Introduction

This is a traditional word-by-word explanation of a hashiya (gloss) on Shaykh al-Sanusi’s popular matn in Islamic theology, Umm al-Barahin. Hamza Karamali carefully works through the first half of the Hashiya in 68 recorded lessons, unpacking its meanings, and relating them to contemporary theological problems related to modern science, Western philosophy, and Wahhabi theology. These include the distinction between tawhid al-rububiyya and tawhid al-uluhiyya; the nature of causation in the universe; propositional modalities; modal metaphysics; the nature of moral responsibility; the relationship between morality and God; the relationship between the mind and reality; the nature of the physical universe; and the relationship between divine foreknowledge and human freewill. This is a course for experienced students of knowledge who have studied the Islamic sciences for many years.

Curricular Context

  • Fluency in Arabic reading is a prerequisite for taking this course
  • Prior knowledge of the foundational Islamic sciences
  • Proficiency in traditional Arabic grammar is a prerequisite for taking this course
  • Previous experience reading traditional mutun is a prerequisite for taking this course
  • Beliefs: Sanusi's Umm al-Barahin - Foundational Proofs for Why Islam is True is a prerequisite for taking this course

Course Outline

SESSION 1 Author’s Introduction and the Basmala (6 lessons)
SESSION 2 The Hamdala (3 lessons)
SESSION 3 The Blessings on the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) (6 lessons)
SESSION 4 An Introduction to the Science of Tawhid (3 lessons)
SESSION 5 The Three Kinds of Hukm (6 lessons)
SESSION 6 The Hukm ‘Aqli (9 lessons)
SESSION 7 The First Obligation of Morally Responsible Agents (6 lessons)
SESSION 8 Divine Existence, Divine Beginninglessness, Divine Endlessness, and Divine Dissimilarity to Created Things (6 lessons)
SESSION 9 Divine Independence, Divine Oneness, Entity-Attributes, and Privative Attributes (8 lessons)
SESSION 10 Existent Attributes, Divine Power, and Divine Will (8 lessons)
SESSION 11 Divine Knowledge, Divine Life, Divine Hearing, and Divine Sight (5 lessons)
SESSION 12 Divine Speech and Implied Attributes (3 lessons)
SESSION 13 Matters that are Impossible for Allah Most High (1) – Nonexistence, Beginning to Exist, Ceasing to Exist, and Resembling Created Things (8 lessons)
SESSION 14 Matters that are Impossible for Allah Most High (2) – Neediness, Not Being One, and Not Being Powerful (7 lessons)
SESSION 15  Matters that are Impossible for Allah Most High (3) – Not Having Will, Ignorance, Death, Deafness, Blindness, and Muteness (7 lessons)
SESSION 16  Matters that are Possible for Allah Most High and the Proof of Allah Most High’s Existence (9 lessons)
SESSION 17 The Proof of Allah Most High’s Existence (5 lessons)
SESSION 18 The Proofs of Allah Most High’s Beginninglessness, Endlessness, Transcendence, Independence, and Oneness (5 lessons)
SESSION 19 Proofs of Allah Most High’s Agency, Hearing, Sight, and Speech + Matters that are Necessary, Impossible, and Possible for His Messengers (7 lessons)
SESSION 20 Proofs of Messengers’ Attributes (6 lessons)
SESSION 21 The Meaning of La Ilaha Illa Allah (1) (5 lessons)
SESSION 22 The Meaning of La Ilaha Illa Allah (2) (7 lessons)
SESSION 23 The Meaning of Muhammad Rasul Allah (1)
SESSION 24 The Meaning of Muhammad Rasul Allah (2) + Author’s Conclusion
What You Will Learn:
  • Develop the skill of reading the mutunshuruh, and hawashi of the Muslim scholarly tradition
  • Deepen your understanding of traditional Islamic theology (both Ash‘ari and Maturidi)
  • Distinguish between those parts of traditional Islamic theology that are “pure theology” and those that are “theology in light of pre-modern science”
  • Learn how to update traditional Islamic theology in light of modern scientific discoveries

About the Course Text

This course is a traditional word-by-word exposition of one of the most popular Azhari manuals in Islamic theology, Shaykh Ibrahim al-Bajuri’s (d. 1276 A.H. / 1860 C.E.) Hashiya on the Umm al-Barahin of Muhammad b. Yusuf al-Sanusi. Shaykh al-Bajuri was a prolific scholar, authoring commentaries and glosses in many different Islamic disciplines, including theology, logic, hadith, Sacred Law, estate division, Arabic morphology, Arabic grammar, and Arabic literature. His works have been highly regarded by generations of teachers and students for their precision, comprehensiveness, and depth of scholarship. He studied and taught at al-Azhar, becoming its foremost scholar and rector (Shaykh al-Azhar) in 1263 A.H. / 1847 C.E., a position that he retained until his death. His Hashiya on the Umm al-Barahin is one of his most widely studied works. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2

Course

Mawsili's Mukhtar: On Transcations, Marriage, and Public Law [Elective]

Introduction Gain an in-depth understanding of commercial transactions and  Personal Law according to the Hanafi school of jurisprudence. The students will gain a necessary and detailed understanding of Islamic Jurisprudence (fiqh) related to the personal law (i.e. marriage, divorce, and related matters) and commercial transactions, including sales, leasing, or hire. The course is based on Imam al-Mawsuli’s great prim...

Introduction

Gain an in-depth understanding of commercial transactions and  Personal Law according to the Hanafi school of jurisprudence. The students will gain a necessary and detailed understanding of Islamic Jurisprudence (fiqh) related to the personal law (i.e. marriage, divorce, and related matters) and commercial transactions, including sales, leasing, or hire. The course is based on Imam al-Mawsuli’s great primer on Hanafi fiqh, al-Mukhtar, and its commentary, al-Ikhtiyar li-Ta’lil Masa’il al-Mukhtar. This expansive course will cover all the chapters on personal law and commercial transactions in al-Mukhtar. [Below fold] This course serves to provide a proper understanding of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) of personal law and commercial transactions. What You Will Learn:
  • Sales, recession, contracts, and rulings
  • Interdicted, trust, and forward sales
  • Interest rulings and monetary exchange
  • The corrupt hire, collateral, division, and judgeship
  • Coercion, claims and acknowledgments
  • Witnessing, agency, and guarantees
  • Marriage: Its rulings, pillars, and conditions
  • The contract, the guardian, suitability, and the dowry
  • Marriage to non-Muslims
  • The types of divorce and their rulings
  • The waiting period after divorce and establishing lineage
  • Expenses/provision and custody
Course Requirements:
  • Knowledge of Arabic would help but is not required. Previous study of fiqh is highly recommended but again not a requirement.

About the Course Text

This course is based upon Imam Mawsuli’s al-Mukhtar. Imam Mawsuli’s influential book is one of the four relied upon primers of the Hanafi school of law, which summarizes the original positions of the founder of the school: Imam Abu Hanifa, may Allah have mercy on him, and the transmitted position of the madhhab. This course is intended for seekers of knowledge and is excellent preparation for the study of more advanced texts in jurisprudence such as Imam al-Marghiyani’s al-Hidaya. An English translation of al-Mukhtar will be provided, along with the full Arabic text of Imam Mawsuli’s own commentary: al-Ikhtiyar li-Ta’lil Masa’il al-Mukhtar. This commentary explains the legal reasoning underlying the issues and rulings in al-Mukhtar. Imam Mawsuli’s commentary focuses on the differences of opinion within the Hanafi School and the legal discussion between Imam Abu Hanifa and his two students. Imam Abdullah bin Mahmud bin Mawdud al-Mawsuli al-Hanafi (599-683 AH) was born in Mousul in Northern Iraq and studied Hanafi fiqh — among others — with Imam al-Hasidi in Damascus. He was known as the most distinguished Hanafi scholar of his age. He was a judge (qadi) in Kufa and later taught at the mosque of Imam Abu Hanifa in Baghdad, where he is also buried. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 4

Course

Ibn Ajiba’s Iqadh al-Himam Sharh al-Hikam

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  • Level 4

Course

Logic: Taftazani's Tahdhib al-Mantiq - Sharpening Reasoning, and Navigating Nunances

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  • Level 4

Course

Legal Tafsir - Itr's Tafsir Ayat al-Ahkam - Understanding Legal Interpretation of the Qur'an

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  • Level 4

Course

Baydawi’s Tafsir - Second and Third Juz’ - Deepening Understanding and Studying the Method of the Great Tafsirs

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  • Level 4

Course

Hadith Method: Ibn al-Salah’s Muqaddima and Introduction to Hadith Research (Takhrij al-Hadith)

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  • Level 4

Course

Hadith Study: Ibn Hajar's Bulugh al-Maram - Reading and Studying the Key Legal Hadiths

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  • Level 4

Course

Usul (Shafi’i): Ansari’s Lubb al-Usul - with Readings in Legal Principles (Qawa'id Fiqhiyya)

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  • Level 4

Course

Usul (Hanafi): Khusro’s Mir’at - with Readings in Legal Principles (Qawa'id Fiqhiyya)

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  • Level 4

Course

Fiqh (Shafi’i): Mallibari’s Fath al-Mu’in - Legal Details, Reasoning, and Applications

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  • Level 4

Course

Fiqh (Hanafi): Mahbubi’s Sharh al-Wiqaya - Legal Details, Reasoning, and Applications

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  • Level 1
24 Lessons 21 hrs 30 mins

Course

On Spirituality: Living the Sunna, Leaving Sin, and Acquiring Good Character: Ghazali’s Beginning of Guidance

Introduction The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) warned that those who learn sacred knowledge to gain the admiration of other people would be among the first to be thrown into the Hellfire. (Muslim) Take this course to learn how to be sincere in your quest for sacred knowledge by (1) avoiding the sins of the outward limbs, (2) avoiding the sins of the heart, and (3) having a good character with other peo...

Introduction

The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) warned that those who learn sacred knowledge to gain the admiration of other people would be among the first to be thrown into the Hellfire. (Muslim) Take this course to learn how to be sincere in your quest for sacred knowledge by (1) avoiding the sins of the outward limbs, (2) avoiding the sins of the heart, and (3) having a good character with other people.

Curricular Context

  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)
  • Take this course before all courses in  Level Two
Course Prerequisites: The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)

Course Outline

LESSON 1: Introduction to the Text and Author LESSON 2: Importance of Routines and Courtesy to the Divine LESSON 3: On Purification LESSON 4: On Visiting the Mosque and the Time Before Sunrise LESSON 5: The Value of Time LESSON 6: One’s Daily Afternoon Routine LESSON 7: The Etiquette of Sleep LESSON 8: The Method and Etiquette of the Ritual Prayer LESSON 9: On Facing Allah Most High With Awe and Reverence in the Prayer LESSON 10: The Etiquette of Leading and Following in the Prayer LESSON 11: The Etiquette of Friday LESSON 12: The Etiquette of Fasting LESSON 13: Introduction to the Sins Committed By the Limbs LESSON 14: Sins of the Tongue LESSON 15: Sins of the Tongue (Continued) LESSON 16: Sins of the Stomach, Private Parts, Hands, and Feet LESSON 17: Envy and Ostentation LESSON 18: Conceit, Arrogance, and Pride LESSON 19: Etiquette of Companionship With the Creator and Creation LESSON 20: Etiquette With the Book of Allah LESSON 21: Etiquette of the Teacher LESSON 22: Etiquette of the Student LESSON 23: Etiquette of Dealing With People You Don’t Know LESSON 24: Duties With Brothers and Friends

What You Will Learn:

  • Distinguish between true religious knowledge that is beneficial and ostensibly religious knowledge that is not
  • Identify instances of the sins of the limbs (particularly those of the tongue)
  • Identify instances of the sins of the heart
  • Complete a regimen of protecting your tongue from sin
  • Improve your character with your teachers, relatives, friends, and strangers
  • Appreciate the spiritual value of good company
Course Format: 24 downloadable lessons, plus live sessions.

About the Course Text

This course is an exposition of Bidayat al-Hidaya (“Beginning of Guidance”), the greatest scholar of his time and arguably the most famous scholar of Islam who ever lived, Imam Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (d. 505 A.H. / 1111 C.E.). Imam al-Ghazali is unanimously regarded as the renewer (mujaddid) of Islam of his century, first for his intellectual defense of traditional Islamic beliefs against Avicennan philosophy, and then for his powerful spiritual reinvigoration of the Islamic sciences through his magnum opus, the 40-part Ihya ‘Ulum al-Din (“Revival of the Religious Sciences”). The textbook for this course, Bidayat al-Hidaya, one of his last works, is written for students who are beginning their religious studies to warn them against the dangers of ostentation, and to teach them how to use their religious knowledge towards their own benefit for eternity.  
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  • Level 1
24 Sessions 61 hrs 35 mins

Course

On Worship (Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat, and Hajj): Shurunbulali’s Ascent to Felicity

Introduction Allah Most High says, “I have  not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.”  (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to get comprehensive and knowledge-based answers to all of the questions that you are likely to face in your worship Allah Most High, all in light of a formal textbook of in Hanafi law that students like you have used for centuries. This course covers the detailed r...

Introduction

Allah Most High says, “I have  not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.”  (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to get comprehensive and knowledge-based answers to all of the questions that you are likely to face in your worship Allah Most High, all in light of a formal textbook of in Hanafi law that students like you have used for centuries. This course covers the detailed rules of Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat, and Hajj. This course is taught according to the Hanafi school. If you would like to learn it according to the Shafi’i school, take this course instead.

Curricular Context

Course Outline

 
Session 1 1A: Introduction to Sacred Law (fiqh) and Imam Abu Hanifa 1B: Introduction to the Author & Text 1C: Water (miya) 1D: The Ritual Ablution (wudu) 1E: The Ritual Bath (ghusl) 1F: The Dry Ablution (tayammum)
Session 2 2A: Wiping over Footgear (khuffayn) 2B: Wiping over Bandages (jaba’ir) 2C: Menstruation (hayd), Post-Natal Bleeding (nifas) & Irregular Bleeding (istihada)
Session 3 3A: Filth (najasa) 3B: Wells (abar) 3C: Leftover Water (as’ar) 3D: Cleaning after Relieving Oneself (istinja’)
Session 4 4A: Prayer Times (awqat al-salat) 4B: The Call to Prayer (adhan)
Session 5 5A: The Conditions (shara’it) of the Prayer 5B: The Integrals (arkan) of the Prayer 5C: The Necessary Actions (wajibat) of the Prayer 5D: The Sunna Actions of the Prayer 5E: The Proper Manners (adab) of the Prayer 5F: The Supplications (ad‘iya) of the Prayer
Session 6 6A: The Invalidators (mufsidat) of the Prayer 6B: The Disliked (makruhat) Actions of the Prayer 6C: The Permitted (mubah) Actions of the Prayer 6D: Breaking (qat‘) & Abandoning (tark) the Prayer
Session 7 7A: Praying on a Riding Mount (dabba) 7B: The Traveller’s Prayer (salat al-musafir) 7C: The Sick Person’s Prayer (salat al-marid) 7D: Being Absolved of the Obligation of Prayer & Lifting One’s Dues (isqat)
Session 8 8A: The Witr Prayer 8B: The Sunna Prayers 8C: The Night Prayers of Ramadan (salat al-tarawih) 8D: Prayer inside the Ka‘ba
Session 9 9A: The Makeup Prayer (qada’ al-fawa’it) 9B: The Congregational Prayer (salat al-jama‘a) 9C: The Prostration of Forgetfulness (sujud al-sahw)
Session 10 10A: The Prostration of Recitation (sajda al-tilawa) 10B: The Prostration of Gratitude (sajda al-shukr) 10C: The Friday Prayer (salat al-jumu‘a)
Session 11 11A: The ‘Eid Prayer 11B: The Eclipse Prayer (salat al-kusuf/al-khusuf) 11C: The Rain Prayer (salat al-istisqa’) 11D: The Prayer of Fear (salat al-khawf)
Session 12 12A: The Funeral Prayer (salat al-janaza) 12B: The Burial (al-dafan) 12C: The Rulings of Martyrs (shuhada’)
Session 13 13A: Fasting: Definition, Types & Intentions 13B: Sighting the Crescent (ru’yat al-hilal) 13C: Things that Invalidate the Fast (mufsidat al-sawm)
Session 14 14A: The Permitted & The Disliked (mubahat/makruhat) 14B: Exemptions (‘awarid) from Fasting 14C: The Spiritual Retreat (i‘tikaf)
Session 15 15: Zakat: Definition, Nisab & Calculation
Session 16 16A: Eligible Recipients of Zakat (masarif al-zakat) 16B: Charity at the End of Ramadan (sadaqat al-fitr)
Session 17 17A: Hajj: Definition, Integrals & Necessary Acts 17B: The Conditions (shurut) which Obligate Hajj
Session 18 18: The State of Pilgrim Sanctity (ihram)
Session 19 19A: The Hajj Described: Arrival in Makka 19B: The Hajj Described: Days 8, 9 & 10 of Dhu’l Hijja 19C: The Hajj Described: Days 11, 12 & 13 of Dhu’l Hijja
Session 20 20: The Lesser Pilgrimage (‘umra)
Session 21 21A: Expiations for Ihram & Rite Violations (jinayat) 21B: Expiations for Hunting Violations (jinayat)
Session 22 22: The Ritual Sacrifice of ‘Eid al-Adha (udhiya/qurbani)
Session 23 23A: Ritually Slaughtered Animals (dhaba’ih) 23B: Animals unlawful for Consumption
Session 24 24: Hunting (sayd)
What You Will Learn:
  • Understand slavehood to Allah Most High and why it is important
  • Learn the rules of purification and prayer that you are likely to encounter in your daily life
  • Memorize the most important rules of wudu, ghusl, prayer, fasting, zakat and Hajj
  • Appreciate the rigour of the science of Sacred Law (fiqh)
Course Format: 24 downloadable classes and monthly live sessions

About the Course Text

This course is an explanation of Ascent to Felicity (Maraqi al-Sa‘adat) a concise primer on the rules of worship, slaughtering, sacrifice, and hunting according by a leading authority of the Hanafi school, Abul Ikhlas Hasan al-Shurunbulali (d. 1069 / ). The author is best known for his more detailed introduction to the rules of worship, Nur al-Idah, and its detailed commentary,  Maraqi al-Falah, which are both  an essential part of every traditional syllabus in Hanafi jurisprudence. Ustadh Tabaraze Azam comments on the back cover of the book’s translation that it is “an excellent primer in Islamic beliefs and worship. . . more useful as a first complete text for those seeking understanding of the fiqh of worship than the more commonly-studied Nur al-Idah.”

 
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  • Level 1
24 Lessons 9 hrs 14 mins

Course

On Worship (Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat, and Hajj): Ba Fadl's The Short Abridgement

Introduction Allah Most High says, “I have not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.” (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to get comprehensive and knowledge-based answers to all of the questions that you are likely to face in your worship Allah Most High, all in light of a formal textbook of in Shafi‘i law that students like you have used for centuries. This course focuses on the detaile...

Introduction

Allah Most High says, “I have not created jinn-kind nor mankind for any purpose other than to worship Me.” (Qur’an, 51:56) Take this course to get comprehensive and knowledge-based answers to all of the questions that you are likely to face in your worship Allah Most High, all in light of a formal textbook of in Shafi‘i law that students like you have used for centuries. This course focuses on the detailed Rules of Purification, Prayer, Rules of Funeral rites, Zakat, Fasting, Spiritual retreat (‘itikaf), Pilgrimage (Hajj), Trade, and Marriage. This course is taught according to the Shafi‘i school. If you would like to learn it according to the Hanafi school, take this course instead.

Curricular Context

• Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i) • Take this course (or its Hanafi equivalent) before all courses in Level Two

Course Outline

INTRODUCTORY LESSON • Biography of Imam Shafi’i Lesson 1 -   Introduction • Biography of Imam Abdullah Ba Fadl • The Text: Al Mukhtasar al Saghir • Author’s Introduction • Wudu – Integrals • Wudu – Sunnas • Wudu – Nullifiers • Wiping over the Khuffs • What is prohibited in ritual impurity Lesson 2 - Purification • Etiquettes of relieving oneself • Cleaning oneself – al Istinja’ • Ghusl – Reasons • Ghusl – Integrals • Ghusl – Sunan • Conditions of purification from ritual impurity Lesson 3 - Impurities • Water and Impurities • Impurities • That which can be purified and that which cannot be purified Lesson 4 - Tayammum • Tayammum – Integrals • Tayammum – Conditions • Tayammum – Wounds and bandages Lesson 5 - Women's Purification • Menstruation • Lochia • Istihada • Prohibitions during Menstruation and Lochia Lesson 6 - Prayer Times • Prayer – Times of prayer • Prayer – Prohibited times Lesson 7 - Prayers, Rules and Conditions • Prayer – Obligation to pray • Prayer – Conditions • Prayer – Excused Impurities Lesson 8 - Prayers Sunnan • Prayer – Integrals • Prayer – Sunan Lesson 9 - Prayer Nullifiers • Prayer – Nullifiers Lesson 10 - The Prostration of Forgetfulness & Recitation • The Prostration of Forgetfulness • The Prostration of Recitation Lesson 11 - Prayers • Those whom it is invalid to pray behind (The Imam) • Conditions of the congregational prayer • The Traveller’s prayer Lesson 12 - Jumuah prayer • The Friday Prayer – The Obligation to Attend • The Friday Prayer – Conditions • The Friday Prayer – Integrals of the Sermons • The Friday Prayer – Conditions of the Sermons Lesson 13 - Funeral Rites: • Washing • Shrouding • The Funeral Prayer • Burial Lesson 14 - Zakat: • Conditions • Types of Wealth that Zakat is due upon • Zakat on Livestock, Agriculture, Gold and Silver, Mines, Buried Treasure, Trade Goods Lesson 15 - Zakat al Fitr: • Conditions • Times • Amount • Deserving Recipients Lesson 16 - Fasting: • Sighting the Moon • Integrals • Prohibited Days • Conditions for fasting to be obligatory Lesson 17 - Fasting: • Nullifiers • Exemptions Lesson 18 - I’tikaf • Conditions • Integrals • Nullifiers Lesson 19 - Hajj and Umrah: • Those whom it is obligatory upon • Integrals of Hajj • Necessary acts of Hajj • Departing from Mina • Integrals of Umrah • Conditions and Integrals of the Tawaf • Conditions and Integrals of the Sa’i • Exiting from Ihram Lesson 20 - Hajj and Umrah: • Prohibitions during Ihram Lesson 21 - Buying and Selling: • Conditions and Integrals Lesson 22 - Riba (interest): • Interest factors and Conditions Lesson 23 - Cancellation of sales transactions: • Types of Cancellations • Defective Goods • Prohibited Sales Lesson 24 - Marriage and Divorce: • Marriage: Conditions, Integrals, Sunnas • Divorce: Integrals and Types • Waiting Periods (‘Idda): Types, Duration, Prohibitions

What You'll Learn

• Understand slavehood to Allah Most High and why it is important • Learn the rules of purification and prayer that you are likely to encounter in your daily life • Memorize the most important rules of wudu and ghusl • Memorize the most important rules of prayer • Memorize the most important rules of zakat • Memorize the most important rules of fasting • Memorize the most important rules of Hajj • Memorize the most important rules of contracts • Appreciate the rigor of the science of Sacred Law (fiqh)

About the Course Text

The course is a detailed explanation of al-Mukhtasar al-Saghir (“Short Abridgment”), a summary of the rules of purification, prayer, fasting, zakat, and hajj, according to the Shafi‘i school, along with a brief introduction to the rules of trade, marriage, and divorce.  The book was authored by the great Yemeni Shaykh Abdullah Ba Fadl (d. 918 A.H. / 1512 C.E.), whose works have been taught for centuries in traditional institutions of learning all over the world. A downloadable translation of the text is provided as part of the course materials.  
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  • Level 3

Course

Tafsir of the First Juz’ of the Qur’an: Imam Baydawi’s Tafsir

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  • Level 3

Course

Usul al-Fiqh: Hattab’s Sharh al-Waraqat - Deeper Understanding of How Islamic Law Works

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  • Level 3

Course

Usul al-Fiqh: Jiwan's Nur al-Anwar Sharh al-Manar - Deeper Understanding of How Islamic Law Works

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  • Level 3

Course

Nasafi, Kanz al-Daqa’iq: On Worship - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Nasafi, Kanz al-Daqa’iq: On Financial Transactions - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Nasafi, Kanz al-Daqa’iq: On Marriage and Divorce - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Ghazzi’s Sharh Matn Abi Shuja: On Financial Transactions - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Ghazzi’s Sharh Matn Abi Shuja: On Marriage and Divorce - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Ghazzi’s Sharh Matn Abi Shuja: On Public Law - Deeper Understanding of Legal Rulings

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  • Level 3

Course

Intermediate Islamic Logic: Zakariyya al-Ansari’s Commentary on the Isaghuji Explained

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  • Level 3

Course

Critical Issues in Ulum al-Qur'an: Suyuti's Itqan and Contemporary Issues

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  • Level 3

Course

Hadith Study: Malik's Muwatta' - Reading and Understanding a Key Text of Hadith

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  • Level 2

Course

Hadith Method: Siraj al-Din's Sharh al-Bayquniyya - The Transmission, Preservation, and Verification of the Sunna

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  • Level 2

Course

Usul al-Fiqh: How Islamic Law is Derived and Interpreted: Halabi’s Mukhtasar al-Manar

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  • Level 2

Course

Quduri's Mukhtasar: On Worship (Purification, Prayer, Fasting, Zakat and Hajj)

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  • Level 2

Course

Quduri's Mukhtasar: On Financial Transactions

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  • Level 2

Course

Quduri's Mukhtasar: On Public Law

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  • Level 3
2 Lessons 10 hrs 48 mins

Course

Intermediate Hadith Studies: Zabidi’s Mukhtasar of Sahih al-Bukhari Explained [Elective]

Introduction This course teaches the student how “unpack” the words of the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him) as narrated in the most authentic source of his teachings, Sahih al-Bukhari, and from one of the refined abridgements of the work, that of al-Zabidi. The practical application and employment of legal theory, theology and Arabic language are applied to the first chapter of the book to open the door of the Sunn...

Introduction

This course teaches the student how “unpack” the words of the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him) as narrated in the most authentic source of his teachings, Sahih al-Bukhari, and from one of the refined abridgements of the work, that of al-Zabidi. The practical application and employment of legal theory, theology and Arabic language are applied to the first chapter of the book to open the door of the Sunna to the student whose horizons in the Sacred Sciences are growing.

Curricular Context

  • This is an elective in Level Three.
  • Before taking this course, take all courses in Level, especially Nawawi’s 40 Hadith Explained.

Course Outline

An introduction to Sahih al-Bukhari and its author, and its abridger, al-Zabidi An overview of hadith chains in general, and the chains for Sahih al-Bukhari specifically The Chapter of Faith from the Zabidi’s Mukhtasar of Sahih al-Bukhari. Course Requirements: Nawawi’s 40 Hadith Explained.

About the Course Text

The text is a key abridgement of one of the most celebrated texts in the Islamic tradition: Sahih al Bukhari. By removing the lengthy chains of transmission and complex repetition of hadiths, the abridgement is a very useful gateway into the vast stratosphere of hadith literature.
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  • Level 2
12 Lessons 21 hrs 54 mins

Course

Ulum al-Qur'an: On Revelation, How It Was Preserved and Understood, and Why It Is True

Introduction “This,” Allah Most High says about the Qur’an, “is the Scripture whereof there is no doubt.” (Qur’an, 2:2). There is no doubt that the Qur’an is from Allah Most High. This is an introduction to the science of ‘Ulum al-Qur’an (“The Qur’anic Sciences”), whose goal is to defend the Qurʾan and to perfectly understand the tools needed for Qurʾanic commentary Take this course to understand wha...

Introduction

“This,” Allah Most High says about the Qur’an, “is the Scripture whereof there is no doubt.” (Qur’an, 2:2). There is no doubt that the Qur’an is from Allah Most High. This is an introduction to the science of ‘Ulum al-Qur’an (“The Qur’anic Sciences”), whose goal is to defend the Qurʾan and to perfectly understand the tools needed for Qurʾanic commentary Take this course to understand what the Qur’an is, how it was revealed to the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), how it has been impeccably preserved down to our times, why we are certain that it could not have been invented by the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), why we are certain that it could only have been inspired to him by Allah Most High himself, and how to interpret the Qur’an.

Curricular Context

  • This is a first-level course in Step Two
  • Complete Step One before taking this course

Course Outline

LESSON 1: Introduction to the Qur’anic Sciences (‘ulum al-Qur’an)
  • 1. about the science of ‘ulum al-Qur’an
  • 2. the meanings of “Qur’an” and “Kitab”
  • 3. what revelation is and why the Qur’anic revelation can only be from Allah
LESSON 2: The Qur’anic Miracle
  • 1. what a miracle is
  • 2. the many ways in which the Qur’an is miraculous
  • 3. why the Qur’an could only have come from Allah Most High
LESSON 3: The Compilation of the Qur’an (1)
  • 1. the preservation of the Qur’an is miraculously meticulous
  • 2. the oral and textual preservation of the Qur’an in the prophetic era
  • 3. the oral and textual preservation of the Qur’an in the era of Abu Bakr
  • 4. responses to common objections
LESSON 4: The Compilation of the Qur’an (2)
  • 1. the differences between the compilations of Abu Bakr and ʿUthman
  • 2. the impetus behind the compilation of ‘Uthman
  • 3. responses to common objections
  • 4. the role of mass-transmission (tawatur) in the preservation of the Qur’an
LESSON 5: How the Qur’an was Revealed
  • 1. the first and last verses to be revealed
  • 2. reasons for revelation (asbab al-nuzul)
  • 3. Meccan and Medinan suras
LESSON 6: How the Qur’an is Arranged
  • 1. the division of the Qur’an into chapters (sura) and verses (ayat)
  • 2. the names of chapters
  • 3. the arrangement of chapters
  • 4. the arrangement of verses
LESSON 7: Ambiguous Verses in the Qur’an + Abrogation in the Qur’an
  • 1. clear (muhkam) and ambiguous (mutashabih) verses
  • 2. the Arabic letters at the beginning of suras
  • 3. abrogation of Qur’anic verses
  • 4. responses common objections about abrogation in the Qur’an
LESSON 8: The Seven Modes of Reciting the Qur’an (al-Ahruf al-Sab‘a)
  • 1. the different hadiths about the seven modes
  • 2. different scholarly positions on the seven modes
  • 3. the relation of the seven modes to the Uthmanic mushafs
LESSON 9: The Ten Canonical Ways of Reciting the Qur’an (al-Qira’at al-‘Ashr)
  • 1. what the ten canonical recitations are
  • 2. the causes of the ten variations
  • 3. the imams who the ten variations are ascribed to
  • 4. why the ten variations are mutawatir (mass-transmitted)
LESSON 10: The Text of the Qu’ran and its Main Topics
  • 1. features of the Uthmanic script (al-rasm al-’Uthmani)
  • 2. the historical advent of diacritical marks, vowels, and divisions of the Qurʾan
  • 3. the main topics of the Qur’an
LESSON 11: Interpreting the Qur’an (1)
  • 1. the development of tafsir in the time of the Companions and the generations after them
  • 2. the use of Isra’iliyyat in tafsir
  • 3. different schools of tafsir and their major scholars
  • 4. translating the Qur’an
LESSON 12: Interpreting the Qur’an (2)
  • 1. how verses and suras are connected to each other
  • 2. the tools and principles of tafsir
  • 3. practical examples of the application of the principles of tafsir
What You Will Learn:
  • Describe how the Qur’an is arranged
  • Explain how the Qur’an has been preserved
  • Explain how the Qur’an is miraculous
  • Confidently answer most questions people have regarding the text, transmission, miraculous nature, and historicity of the Qurʾan
  • Become familiar with the different approaches to understanding the Qur’an
  • Appreciate the depth of traditional Qur’anic scholarship
Course Requirements:
  • Complete Step One before taking this course

About the Course Text

The course material has been drawn from a variety of classical and contemporary Arabic sources. Scholarly works in English on this subject are rare, and Shaykh Abdurrahim intends to turn this course material into his own original work in the English language. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
12 Lessons 8 hrs 35 mins

Course

Islamic Logic: Definitions, Arguments, and Sound Thinking: Abhari’s Isaghuji

Introduction Traditional Islamic logic studies the rules of correct mental inference. Muslim scholars received Aristotelian logic as early as the second Islamic century, improved it, and tailored it to the needs of the Islamic sciences, turning it into a thoroughly Islamic discipline. An introductory study of logic is now indispensable for any serious study of the Islamic sciences. Take this course to understand what the scie...

Introduction

Traditional Islamic logic studies the rules of correct mental inference. Muslim scholars received Aristotelian logic as early as the second Islamic century, improved it, and tailored it to the needs of the Islamic sciences, turning it into a thoroughly Islamic discipline. An introductory study of logic is now indispensable for any serious study of the Islamic sciences. Take this course to understand what the science of logic is, where it came from, how Muslim scholars use it in the Islamic sciences, and how it relates to the methods of reasoning in modern science and modern formal logic. by: shaykh hamza karamali

Curricular Context

  • Complete Level One before taking this course

Course Outline

WEEK 1
  • (1) Is Logic Permissible? (in 3 parts)
  • (2) Why Do We Need Logic?
  • (3) Why Should We Do Inference?
WEEK 2
  • (4) Introduction to Abhari's Isagoge
  • (5) Does Logic Need Language?
  • (6) How Exactly Does Logic Use Language? (in 2 parts)
WEEK 3
  • (7) What are Universals?
  • (8) Why are Universal Concepts Important?
  • (9) The Five Universals
WEEK 4
  • (10) Essences
  • (11) Definition
WEEK 5
  • (12) Propositions
  • (13) What Does it Mean for a Proposition to be True?
WEEK 6
  • (14) Kinds of Categorical Propositions
  • (15) Kinds of Conditional Propositions
WEEK 7
  • (16) Contradiction
  • (17) Conversion
WEEK 8
  • (18) What is an Argument?
WEEK 9
  • (19) Deductive Inference with Categorical Syllogisms
WEEK 10
  • (20) Deductive Inference with Conditional Syllogisms
WEEK 11
  • (21) The Matter of Conclusive Arguments
  • (22) The Matter Probabilistic Arguments
WEEK 12
  • (23) Has Modern Science Replaced Ancient Logic?
  • (24) Has Modern Logic Replaced Ancient Logic?
FINAL LIVE SESSION
  • (25) Where Do I Go From Here?
What You Will Learn:
  • Explain what Islamic logic is, how it developed, and why it needs to be studied
  • Memorize the definitions of key terms in the science of Islamic logic
  • Apply the techniques of Islamic logic to a variety of problems in the Islamic sciences
  • Explain the relevance of Islamic logic today
Course Format: 12 downloadable lessons. and a monthly live session. About the Course Text This course is a contemporary explanation of al-Isaghuji, a primer on Islamic logic by Athir al-Din al-Abhari (d. 663 A.H. / 1265 C.E.). al-Abhari is famous as an astronomer, scientist, and philosopher, but he was also a scholar of Islamic theology (kalam), sacred law (fiqh), and sacred legal theory (usul al-fiqh). His primer on logic is his most famous work, studied in religious seminaries all over the Islamic world ever since it was written all the way down to the present day. Although it has the same name as the Isagoge of the Neoplatonist pagan philosopher Porphyry (d. 269 C.E.) (a work that was studied widely in medieval Christian circles), Abhari’s work is distinctly Islamic with distinctly Islamic concerns. This course unpacks Abhari’s al-Isaghuji in light of how it has been used for centuries by scholars of the traditional Islamic sciences, and also in light of contemporary scientific and philosophical debates, leaving students with a clear understanding of what it meant to be a thinking and well-educated Muslim in the past, and what it means to be a thinking and well-educated Muslim today. A translation of the course text is provided as part of the course materials. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 2
12 Lessons 19 hrs 26 mins

Course

Beliefs: Sanusi's Umm al-Barahin - Foundational Proofs for Why Islam is True

Introduction Allah Most High sent His messengers with “clear signs” (Qur’an, 57:25). They called people to abandon the blind imitation of the false religions and customs of their ancestors and to use their minds to discern what was true and then follow it wholeheartedly. The science of Islamic theology (kalam) formalized the arguments of Allah’s messengers and then used them to respond to the questions posed by Greek ...

Introduction

Allah Most High sent His messengers with “clear signs” (Qur’an, 57:25). They called people to abandon the blind imitation of the false religions and customs of their ancestors and to use their minds to discern what was true and then follow it wholeheartedly. The science of Islamic theology (kalam) formalized the arguments of Allah’s messengers and then used them to respond to the questions posed by Greek philosophy. Take this course to learn Islamic theology, how it developed, and how to apply it to contemporary questions related to science, atheism, cosmological arguments, human freewill, infinity, classical conditioning, natural causation, anthropomorphism, miracles, modal logic, and the problem of evil.

Curricular Context

  • This is a Level Two course
  • Take Islamic Logic before taking this course (or simultaneously with it) 
  • Complete Level One before taking this course

Course Outline

LESSON 1: What is Islamic Theology (kalam)?
  • 1(a). History of Kalam from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) to Abul Hasan al-Ash’ari (27 min 45 sec)
  • 1(b). History of Kalam from Abul Hasan al-Ash’ari to Muhammad b. Yusuf al-Sanusi (21 min 11 sec)
  • 2. Perceiving the Truth of Propositions (ahkam) (32 min 15 sec)
LESSON 2: The Sanusiyya + The Attributes of God (1)
  • 1. Moral Responsibility and the First Obligation (35 min 10 sec)
  • 2. The Organization of the Sanusiyya (9 min 58 sec)
  • 3. The 20 Attributes That Are Necessary For Allah Most High (17 min 36 sec)
  • 4. Existence (28 min 7 sec)
  • 5. Privative Attributes (37 min)
LESSON 3: The Attributes of God (2)
  • 1. Power, Will, and Knowledge (55 min 51 sec)
  • 2. Life and Divine Agency (14 min 38 sec)
  • 3. Hearing and Sight (18 min 33 sec)
  • 4. Speech (16 min 58 sec)
  • 5. The Relation Between the Written Qur’an and the Attribute of Speech (5 min 12 sec)
LESSON 4: Transcendence and Anthropomorphism
  • 1. Entailed Attributes (10 min 53 sec)
  • 2. Matters that Are Impossible for Allah Most High -- Focus on Transcendence (57 min 36 sec)
  • 3. The Hadith of “Descent” and the Verse of the Throne (28 min 27 sec)
LESSON 5: Transcendence, Divine Wisdom, and Human Freewill
  • 1. Matters that Are Impossible for Allah Most High -- Focus on Divine Oneness (25 min 56 sec)
  • 2. Understanding Verses That Seem to Imply Motives (16 min 5 sec)
  • 3. Divine Destiny and Human Freewill (28 min 30 sec)
  • 4. What is Possible for Allah Most High (31 min 35 sec)
LESSON 6: The Argument for the Existence of God
  • 1. A History of the Cosmological Argument (48 min 14 sec)
  • 2. The Argument for the Existence of God (1 hr 12 min 30 sec)
LESSON 7: The Kalam Cosmological Argument and Big Bang Cosmology LESSON 8: The Arguments for Allah Most High’s Necessary Existence and Agency
  • 1. The Argument for Allah Most High’s Beginninglessness and Endlessness (34 min 30 sec)
  • 2. The Argument for Allah Most High’s Transcendence and indpendence (28 min 53 sec)
  • 3. The Argument for Allah Most High’s Oneness (25 min 40 sec)
  • 4. The Argument for Allah Most High’s Agency (31 min 40 sec)
LESSON 9: Revelatory Arguments and Allah Most High’s Messengers
  • 1. The Argument for Allah Most High’s Hearing, Sight, and Speech (14 mins)
  • 2. The Argument for What is Possible for Allah Most High (12 min 35 sec)
  • 3. What is a Messenger (21 min 50 sec)
  • 4. The Attributes of Messengers (33 min 33 sec)
LESSON 10: Arguments for Genuineness of Allah Most High’s Messengers
  • 1. Kinds of Miracles (41 min 10 sec)
  • 2. Prophetic Miracles as Evidence for the Genuineness of Messengers (33 min 50 sec)
  • 3. Other Proofs for the Genuineness of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) (29 min 40 sec)
LESSON 11: The Sinlessness of Messengers and the Wisdom of Difficulties
  • 1. The Argument for the Sinlessness of Messengers (42 mins)
  • 2. The Wisdom of Difficulties and the Problem of Evil (30 mins 50 sec)
LESSON 12: La ilaha illa Allah Muhammadur Rasul Allah as a Summary of Islamic Theology
  • 1. La Ilaha Illa Allah (45 min)
  • 2. Muhammad Rasul Allah (45 min)
  • 3. Conclusion (10 min)
What You Will Learn:
  • Describe the historical development of mainstream Islamic theology
  • Explain what Muslims believe about Allah Most High and His messengers
  • Prove why these beliefs are true
  • Respond to common objections to belief in Allah Most High and His messengers
  • Appreciate the scholarly depth of the Islamic theological tradition
Course Requirements: Complete Step One before taking this course

About the Course Text

The Sanusiyya has arguably been the most popular introduction to mainstream Islamic theology ever since it was written five hundred years ago by the learned and pious West African theologian, Shaykh Muhammad b. Yusuf al-Sanusi (d. 895 AH / 1489 CE). Shaykh Muhammad b. Yusuf al-Sanusi (may Allah have mercy on him) wrote many textbooks in the science of Islamic theology of varying lengths--a long work called al-Sanusiyya al-Kubra (“The Long Sanusiyya”), a middle-sized work called al-Sanusiyya al-Wusta (“The Medium Sanusiyya”), a short work called al-Sanusiyya al-Sughra (“The Short Sanusiyya”), and an even shorter work called Sughra al-Sughra (“The Tiny Sanusiyya”). The most popular of these works, however, has been al-Sanusiyya al-Sughra (“The Short Sanusiyya”), which is the textbook for this course. This book is also called Umm al-Baraheen (“The Summary of Theological Proofs”), which is a description of its contents: the book begins with an introduction to the methods of reasoning, then lists the attributes of Allah Most High, then summarizes the rational arguments for those attributes, then lists the attributes of Allah Most High’s messengers, then summarizes the rational arguments for those attributes, and finally concludes by showing how the testification of faith (la ilaha illa allah muhammadur rasul allah) summarizes everything that has been mentioned in the book. A translation of the text is provided to all registered students of the course. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 1
12 Lessons 17 hrs 39 mins

Course

What Muslims Believe and Why: Dardir's Kharida al-Bahiyya

Introduction An introduction to the formal study of Islamic beliefs through a traditional manual of Islamic theology. Take this course to understand the basic methods of Islamic logic and how to use them to gain evidence-based conviction in Allah Most High, His attributes, His messengers, and the afterlife. This knowledge that you will learn in this course is the context that will give your life its purpose. Curricular Conte...

Introduction

An introduction to the formal study of Islamic beliefs through a traditional manual of Islamic theology. Take this course to understand the basic methods of Islamic logic and how to use them to gain evidence-based conviction in Allah Most High, His attributes, His messengers, and the afterlife. This knowledge that you will learn in this course is the context that will give your life its purpose.

Curricular Context

  • This is a second-level course in Level One.
  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)
  • Take this course before all courses in Level Two.
Course Requirements: The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)

Course Outline

Introduction: LESSON 1 – Introduction to Class and Biography of Author Logical Rulings: LESSON 2 – Introduction to Categories of Rational or Logical Rulings and What is Necessary for Allah Most High LESSON 3 – What is Impossible and Possible for Allah Most High and Islamic Atomic Theory Theology (Ilahiyyat): LESSON 4 – Introduction to Theology and Attributes of Negation LESSON 5 – Logical Absurdities: Infinite Regress (tasalsul) and Circularity (dawr) LESSON 6 – Attributes of Affirmation LESSON 7 – Relationship Between Attributes of Affirmation LESSON 8 – Logically Impossible for Allah Most High Prophetology (Nubuwwat) LESSON 9 – Introduction and What is Necessary for the Prophets LESSON 10 – What is Impossible and Possible for the Prophets Eschatology (Sam’iyyat) LESSON 11 – Angels, Jinn, and the Afterlife Sufism LESSON 12 – Sufism and Ending Comments What You Will Learn:
  • Learn and use the basic logical methods of traditional Islamic theology
  • Memorize the attributes of Allah Most High, His messengers, His angels, and other unseen beings
  • Memorize the key events that will take place after death
  • Develop evidence-based conviction in all of the above
  • Understand how to turn mental conviction into spiritual certainty
  • Appreciate the logical rigor of Islamic theology
Course Format: 12 downloadable lessons, 3 live sessions.

About the Course Text

An introduction to the formal study of Islamic beliefs through a traditional manual of Islamic theology. Take this course to understand the basic methods of Islamic logic and how to use them to gain evidence-based conviction in Allah Most High, His attributes, His messengers, and the afterlife. This knowledge that you will learn in this course is the context that will give your life its purpose. The course is an explanation of al-Kharida al-Bahiyya (“The Lustrous Pearl”), an introduction to the science of Islamic theology by the great theologian, spiritual master, and foremost Maliki jurist of al-Azhar, Shaykh Ahmad al-Dardir (d. 1201 A.H. / 1786 C.E.). The Kharida is a 71-line didactic poem that, in its own words, is “slight and small in size, but great in knowledge.” For hundreds of years, it has been studied and memorized by beginners of Islamic theology, and is frequently quoted by students and teachers alike because of its pithy expressions. A downloadable copy of the course text in both English and Arabic is provided as part of the course materials.
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  • Level 1
12 Lessons 7 hrs 24 mins

Course

Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi): Getting Started With Your Belief and Practice

Introduction “Whoever travels a path to seek knowledge, Allah thereby facilitates for him a path to Paradise.” (Muslim) This course is the first step in your pursuit of religious knowledge. It explains what your religion is, what you must know about it, and how you should learn it. This course is taught according to the Hanafi school. If you would like to learn it according to the Shafi‘i school, take this course instea...

Introduction

“Whoever travels a path to seek knowledge, Allah thereby facilitates for him a path to Paradise.” (Muslim) This course is the first step in your pursuit of religious knowledge. It explains what your religion is, what you must know about it, and how you should learn it. This course is taught according to the Hanafi school. If you would like to learn it according to the Shafi‘i school, take this course instead.

Curricular Context

  • Start here to complete Level One.
  • This course has no prerequisites.

Course Outline

  • Lesson 1: Introduction
  • Lesson 2: Belief (Part 1)
  • Lesson 3: Belief (Part 2)
  • Lesson 4: Rulings of the Shariah
  • Lesson 5: Purification (Part 1)
  • Lesson 6: Purification (Part 2)
  • Lesson 7: The Prayer (Part 1)
  • Lesson 8: The Prayer (Part 2)
  • Lesson 9: The Prayer (Part 3)
  • Lesson 10: The Prayer (Part 4)
  • Lesson 11: Zakat & Fasting
  • Lesson 12: The Path to Salvation
What You Will Learn:
  • Memorize the Hadith of Jibreel (upon him be peace)
  • Understand how to seek religious knowledge
  • Learn the basics of Islamic belief
  • Learn the basic rules of wudu, ghusl, and prayer
  • Learn the basic rules of fasting and zakat
  • Learn how worship Allah Most High with sincerity
Course Requirements: This course has no prerequisites. Course Format: 12 downloadable lessons, and monthly live session.

About the Course Text

This course is based on The Absolute Essentials of Islam: Faith, Prayer, and The Path of Salvation According to the Hanafi School, by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani (White Thread Press). This book covers what every Muslim must know about the basic guidance of Islam in its three dimensions: (1) beliefs (iman)—and how to have sound belief in Allah, His Prophets, and in transmitted beliefs; (2) submission (Islam)—by looking at the daily devotional obligation of ritual prayer; and (3) spiritual excellence (Ihsan)—by looking at key sins and vices to avoid, and key virtuous actions and traits to uphold in seeking closeness to Allah. Serious students should purchase a hard copy of the book to fully benefit from the course. “I know of no other manual of Islam that presents the essentials of the Hanafi school and basic Islamic belief so reliably, concisely, and elegantly as The Absolute Essentials of Islam. Faraz Rabbani is to be commended for producing a work from which the new Muslim can learn, the practicing Muslim check his fiqh, or the student merely curious about the practice of Islam see how it all fits together. It is likely to serve the Ummah, Allah willing, as long as there are English-speaking Muslims in it who want to know their din. This book works.” – Shaykh Nuh Ha Mim Keller, Jordan  
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  • Level 1

Course

Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i): Habshi’s Encompassing Epistle Explained: Getting Started With Your Belief and Practice

Introduction “Whoever travels a path to seek knowledge, Allah thereby facilitates for him a path to Paradise.” (Muslim) This course is the first step in your pursuit of religious knowledge. It explains what your religion is, what you must know about it, and how you should learn it. This course is taught according to the Shafi‘i school. If you would like to learn it according to the Hanafi school, take this course instea...

Introduction

“Whoever travels a path to seek knowledge, Allah thereby facilitates for him a path to Paradise.” (Muslim) This course is the first step in your pursuit of religious knowledge. It explains what your religion is, what you must know about it, and how you should learn it. This course is taught according to the Shafi‘i school. If you would like to learn it according to the Hanafi school, take this course instead.

Curricular Context

  • Start here to complete Level One.
  • This course has no prerequisites.

Course Outline

  • LESSON 1: Introduction to the Text
  • LESSON 2: Explanation of Faith & Beliefs
  • LESSON 3: Explanation of Submission & Islamic Jurisprudence
  • LESSON 4: The Different Types of Bleeding for Women
  • LESSON 5: Conditions, Integrals & Sunnah of the Prayer
  • LESSON 6: Inner Dimensions & Nullifiers of the Prayer
  • LESSON 7: The Friday Prayer & Supererogatory Prayers
  • LESSON 8: Fasting
  • LESSON 9: Zakat
  • LESSON 10: Hajj & Umrah
  • LESSON 11: Purification of the Heart (Part 1)
  • LESSON 12: Purification of the Heart (Part 2)
What You Will Learn:
  • Memorize the Hadith of Jibreel (upon him be peace)
  • Understand how to seek religious knowledge
  • Learn the basics of Islamic belief
  • Learn the basic rules of wudu, ghusl, and prayer
  • Learn the basic rules of fasting and zakat
  • Learn how worship Allah Most High with sincerity
Course Requirements:
  • Students are encouraged to get a copy of The Essential of Islam by Ahmad bin Zayn al Habashi, Trans. Abdul Aziz Ahmed, published by Islamic Village (al-Risalat al-Jamiah)
Course Format: 12 downloadable lessons, 3 live sessions.

About the Course Text

The course is a detailed explanation of al-Risala al-Jami ‘ah wa al-Tadhkira al-Nafi‘ah (“The Comprehensive Epistle and Beneficial Reminder”), a concise manual of basic religious knowledge by the great religious scholar and spiritual guide of Hadhramaut, al-Habib Ahmad ibn Zayn al-Habshi (d. 1132 A.H. / 1720 C.E.). For hundreds of years, this book has been taught in traditional institutions of learning all over the world as the first step in students’ religious education. The author was a descendant of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and a close students of the great sage of Arabia, al-Habib ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Alawi al-Haddad. A downloadable translation of the text is provided as part of the course materials.

Significant Dates

Registration Opens: September 30, 2019 Registration Closes: November 25, 2019 Note: Course material will be available on the first day of classes, October 21, 2019. "Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)
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  • Level 1
12 Lessons 22 hrs 26 mins

Course

Living Right: Halal and Haram and Living Prophetic Excellence (Hanafi)

Introduction Having godfearingness (taqwa) is a prerequisite for being able to benefit from the great guidance of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). Take this course to learn how to have godfearingness in most of the everyday situations that you are likely to encounter in your life, such as eating  halal food, proper dress, interacting with the opposite gender, guarding your gaze, and guarding your tongue. Cu...

Introduction

Having godfearingness (taqwa) is a prerequisite for being able to benefit from the great guidance of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). Take this course to learn how to have godfearingness in most of the everyday situations that you are likely to encounter in your life, such as eating  halal food, proper dress, interacting with the opposite gender, guarding your gaze, and guarding your tongue.

Curricular Context

  • This is a second-level course in Level One
  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)
  • Take this course before all courses in Step Two

Course Outline

LESSON 1: Introduction to the Halal and Haram
LESSON 2: The Importance of One’s Food and Drink
LESSON 3: The Etiquette of Dress and Adornment
LESSON 4: Gender Interaction
LESSON 5: Social Duties
LESSON 6: Social Relationships
LESSON 7: The Tongue
LESSON 8: The Sins of the Tongue
LESSON 9: Sins of the Limbs
LESSON 10: How to Avoid General Sins
LESSON 11: Blameworthy Traits
LESSON 12: Conclusion of the Course
What You Will Learn:
  • Appreciate the importance of the quality of godfearingness
  • Memorize how to have godfearingness in dozens of everyday situations
  • Improve your religious practice by keeping good company and making frequent repentance
Course Requirements:
  •  The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)
Course Format: 12 downloadable lessons, 3 live sessions.

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  • Level 1
12 Lessons 10 hrs 34 mins

Course

Living Right: Halal and Haram and Living Prophetic Excellence (Shafi'i)

Introduction Having godfearingness (taqwa) is a prerequisite for being able to benefit from the great guidance of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). Take this course to learn how to have godfearingness in most of the everyday situations that you are likely to encounter in your life, such as eating  halal food, proper dress, interacting with the opposite gender, guarding your gaze, investing and saving your mon...

Introduction

Having godfearingness (taqwa) is a prerequisite for being able to benefit from the great guidance of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). Take this course to learn how to have godfearingness in most of the everyday situations that you are likely to encounter in your life, such as eating  halal food, proper dress, interacting with the opposite gender, guarding your gaze, investing and saving your money, and guarding your tongue.

Curricular Context

  • This is a second-level course in Level One.
  • Before taking this course, take The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)
  • Take this course before all courses in Level Two. 

Course Outline

  • LESSON 1
    • 1. The Fruits and Meanings of Taqwa
    • 2. The Hadith of Jibril and Introduction to Halal and Haram
  • LESSON 2
    • 1. History of the Shafi‘i School
    • 2. Using the Lavatory
    • 3. Halal and Haram Foods
  • LESSON 3
    • 1. Etiquette of Eating
  • LESSON 4
    • 1. Guests and Hosting Part 1
    • 2. Guests and Hosting Part 2
  • LESSON 5
    • 1. Interacting with the Opposite Gender
    • 2. Clothing
  • LESSON 6
    • 1. Commanding the Right and Forbidding the Wrong
  • LESSON 7
    • 1. Family Relations
  • LESSON 8
    • 1. Backbiting
  • LESSON 9
    • 1. Talebearing, Lying,
    • 2. Breaking Promises, Excessive Joking, and Mocking Others
  • LESSON 10
    • 1. Conditions of a Valid Business Transaction
  • LESSON 11
    • 1. Investing, Borrowing, and Insurance
  • LESSON 12
    • 1. Marriage and Divorce
     
What You Will Learn:
  • Appreciate the importance of the quality of godfearingness
  • Memorize how to have godfearingness in dozens of everyday situations
  • Improve your religious practice by keeping good company and making frequent repentance
Course Requirements:
  • The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Hanafi) or The Absolute Essentials of Islam (Shafi‘i)

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  • Level 1
12 Lessons 13 hrs 15 mins

Course

How Islam Works: What is Religion, and How It Is Preserved, Transmitted, and Interpreted

Introduction The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said that there will always be a group of his followers who will preserve and uphold his religion, teaching it just as he himself taught it, “unharmed by anyone who opposes them, all the way until the Day of Judgment.” (Bukhari and Muslim) Take this course to understand how the scholars of mainstream Islam have preserved the Qur’an, the Sunna, and it...

Introduction

The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said that there will always be a group of his followers who will preserve and uphold his religion, teaching it just as he himself taught it, “unharmed by anyone who opposes them, all the way until the Day of Judgment.” (Bukhari and Muslim) Take this course to understand how the scholars of mainstream Islam have preserved the Qur’an, the Sunna, and its understanding, from the time of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) all the way down to our times.

Curricular Context

  • Start here to complete Level One
  • This course has no prerequisites

Course Outline

Lesson 1: The Need for Religion & Guidance Lesson 2: The Book of Allah: The Qur’an Lesson 3: The Living Guide: The Sunna of the Prophet ﷺ Lesson 4: Preservation and Transmission of the Qur’an and Sunna Lesson 5: How Guidance is Understood: Textual Interpretation and the Schools of Islamic Law I Lesson 6: How Guidance is Understood: Textual Interpretation and the Schools of Islamic Law II Lesson 7: Interpretation and Belief: A Brief History of the Emergence of Schools of Islamic Theology Lesson 8: Key Principles of Islamic Theology Lesson 9: The Spiritual Message of the Qur’an and Sunna Lesson 10: Key Principles of Islamic Spirituality Lesson 11: Calling, Service, and Guidance: The Centrality of Calling to Allah and His Messenger in Religion Lesson 12: The Final Dimension: Keys to Living Religion in Challenging Times

What You'll Learn

  • Understand how the Qur’an and Sunna were preserved
  • Identify the scholarly tradition of mainstream Islam
  • Learn how this scholarly tradition preserved the understanding of the Qur’an and Sunna
  • Understand how to apply the Qur’an and Sunna in our times
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Level Five

Level Five is graduate-level studies and specialization

It is being developed in consultation with leading scholars. Some parts of it are being deployed at SeekersGuidance's Dar al-Fuqaha' Seminary in Istanbul.


We are in the process of developing specializations in (1) Islamic law and method (fiqh and usul); (2) theology and spirituality (kalam and tasawwuf); (3) Qur’anic sciences (ulum al-Qur’an); and (4) the hadith sciences (ulum al-hadith).


Each of these specializations will be fully available at seminary programs in Istanbul and elsewhere. Students will be able to participate through blended learning, by combining online study with in-person immersive study with senior traditionally-trained scholars with authorization (ijaza) and experience

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