Imaam al-Shatibee said in al-I’tisaam (1/43):

Bid‘ah is the method of innovating in religion; it resembles a Sharee‘ah-approved method, but actually contradicts the Sharee‘ah and is intended to exaggerate religious observance. The Prophet (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) said:

“Whoever innovates anything in this matter of ours (i.e., Islam), that is not part of it will have it rejected.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, no. 2697; Muslim, no. 1718)

According to a version narrated by Muslim,

“Whoever does anything that is not in accordance with this matter of ours (i.e., Islam), will have it rejected.”

This is why it is reported on the Imaam of Daar-ul-Hijrah (Madeenah), Imaam Maalik Ibn Anas, may Allaah have mercy on him, that he said: “Whosoever introduces into Islaam an innovation, which he deems is good, then he has claimed that Muhammad (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) has betrayed (the trust of conveying) the Message. Read the saying of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic:

‘This day I have completed your Religion for you, and I have perfected My favor upon you, and I am pleased with Islaam as a Religion for you.’

[Surat-ul-Maa’idah: Q5V3]

So whatever was not (part of) the Religion on that day, is not (part of) the Religion on this day. And the last part of this ummah (nation) will not be rectified, except by that which rectified its first part.”

This was from the understanding of Imaam Maalik, the Imaam of Daar-ul-Hijrah, such that he plainly stated in a clear Arabic language that whoever introduces into Islaam just one innovation and then claims that it is something good, he has in fact claimed that Muhammad (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) betrayed the Message. And whoever makes this claim, he does not believe (truly) that “Muhammad is His slave and messenger.” As it is very clear in the words of this noble Imaam, it (the innovation) is “not (part of) the Religion on this day.”

So it is upon the Muslim to implement his Ittibaa’ (following of the Prophet), such that he could be truthful in (his declaration that) Muhammad, Allaah’s Messenger, is His slave and messenger. And that he (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) brought the complete and pure message, without adding to it or subtracting from it. If this is the case, then every Muslim must acknowledge his extent and stop at the points where his Prophet (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) has placed limits for him, such as the acts of worship and deeds of obedience (to Allaah). This is because the pen has dried with what was revealed previously; no more revelation after Muhammad (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam). And there was no room left open to approve of an act of worship that did not exist previously in the first days (i.e. of the Prophet). Consequently, our pious predecessors (Salaf As-Saalih) have come and gone all acknowledging the extent of the Prophet (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) in that he first fulfilled his mission and conveyed the Message, as you know. And (secondly) that he was the best worshipper amongst Allaah’s worshippers and the most fearing of Allaah. So there is no room to correct him:

  1. From the standpoint of legislating (revealed matters) into the Religion, as you have heard the ayah and Imaam Maailk’s comments about it.
  2. Such that it can be claimed that there is someone who is a better worshipper and more worshipping (of Allaah) than Allaah’s Messenger (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam). This is impossible!

So whoever understands these two facts, which are related to one’s belief that Muhammad (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam) is Allaah’s slave and messenger, he will limit the worship he performs for Allaah to only that which has been reported on the Prophet (in the ahaadeeth). And he will not put any example or role model before him other than the Prophet (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam). Nor will he ever claim this second point, meaning it is impossible that it can get into the mind of any believer that he is more dutiful to Allaah or more fearing of Allaah or more worshipping of Allaah than him (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam). This is something impossible!

So after realizing that the Prophet is the best worshipper amongst mankind and the most dutiful and fearing of Allaah amongst us, there should not be anything but following of Allaah’s Messenger (ṣalla Allaahu ‘alaehi wa-sallam). We are upon certainty that we will never be able to encompass the worship of Allaah’s Messenger, except for occasionally or at brief periods of time. So we are completely incapable of following and tracing the footsteps of Allaah’s Messenger in his worship. This is impossible – with respect to every individual amongst mankind after the Prophet.


10 thoughts on “Bid’ah

  1. kamal

    Jazaakallahu khairon.


  2. Abdullateef ibn Taiwo

    164865 : Is it permissible for a
    younger person to bow to an older
    person when greeting them?
    Shirk in respect confuses me a lot!
    There is a tradition in my relatives
    that they bow a little in front of their
    elders, their elders keep their hand on
    their heads out of love, however, the
    young ones dont bow as much as one
    bows in Ruku. I have seen almost all
    Praise be to Allaah.
    It is not permissible to bow when
    meeting someone, whether he is a
    scholar or anyone else.
    Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may
    Allah have mercy on him) said:
    With regard to bowing when greeting
    someone, it is forbidden as is
    narrated in al-Tirmidhi from the
    Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah
    be upon him); they asked him about a
    man who meets his brother, can he
    bow to him? He said: “No.” And it is
    not permissible to bow or prostrate to
    anyone except Allah, may He be
    glorified and exalted, even though
    that may have been a form of greeting
    in other religions, as in the story of
    Yoosuf – “…and they fell down before
    him prostrate. And he said: ‘O my
    father! This is the interpretation of
    my dream aforetime!’” [Yoosuf
    12:100] . But in our religion it is not
    acceptable to bow or prostrate to
    anyone except Allah; in fact it is also
    forbidden to stand as the non-Arabs
    stand before one another, so how
    about bowing and prostrating?
    Similarly, a partial bow is also
    included in this prohibition.
    End quote from Majmoo‘ al-Fataawa ,
    And he said:
    With regard to lowering the head when
    meeting prominent figures such as
    shaykhs and so on, or kissing the
    ground and so on, these are things
    concerning which there is no
    difference of opinion among the
    imams that they are forbidden. In fact
    merely inclining the back to anyone
    other than Allah, may He be glorified
    and exalted, is forbidden. In al-
    Musnad and elsewhere it is narrated
    that when Mu‘aadh ibn Jabal came
    back from Syria, he prostrated to the
    Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah
    be upon him), who said: “What is this,
    O Mu‘aadh?” He said: O Messenger of
    Allah, I saw them in Syria prostrating
    to their bishops and patriarchs, and
    they narrated that from their
    Prophets. He said: “They are lying, O
    Mu‘aadh; if I were to instruct anyone
    to prostrate to anyone else, I would
    have instructed a woman to prostrate
    to her husband because of the
    greatness of his rights over her. O
    Mu‘aadh, do you think that if you
    were to pass my grave you would
    prostrate?” He said: No. He said: “Do
    not do that,” or words to that effect.
    To sum up: standing, sitting, bowing
    and prostrating are due only to the
    only One Who is deserving of worship,
    the Creator of the heavens and the
    earth; with regard to that which is due
    only to Allah, no one should have any
    share in it; this also applies to
    swearing by anything other than
    Allah, may He be glorified and
    End quote from Majmoo‘ al-Fataawa ,
    27/92, 93
    The scholars of the Standing
    Committee said:
    It is not permissible to bow when
    greeting or to take off one’s shoes for
    And they said:
    It is not permissible to bow when
    greeting a Muslim or a kaafir, whether
    with the upper part of the body or the
    head, because bowing is a form of
    worship, and worship can only be for
    Allah alone.
    Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz,
    Shaykh ‘Abd al-Razzaaq ‘Afeefi,
    Shaykh ‘Abd-Allah ibn Ghadyaan,
    Shaykh ‘Abd-Allah ibn Qa‘ood
    Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah ,
    1/233, 234
    And Allah knows best.


  3. Muhammad bin Umar

    Assalamu’alaykum, please can I get Ustaazh Jabata phone number.

    Jazakumullaahu’khayran as you send.


  4. Abu Abdulsalam

    Assalam alaikum waramotulahi wabarakatu.. sheikh abu abdulrahman muhammed aliy jabat afisohu llahi says that using the spoon when we are eat is bidi’ah, he said we use it when we eat a liquid food, so what of if we are eating garri and groudnut or pap and moimoi… Pls i need the answer now. Jazakumu llahu haera


    • wa alaikumus salamu warahmatullahi wabarakatuh. Maybe you should call him so that he can clarify his stand for you. Not all those who listen to him agree totally with all his stands.


  5. Faarouq

    Since not all those who listen to him agree with all his stands makes it optional


  6. oladapo hammad salafi

    Jazakalahu haira


  7. Muh'taofeek

    As Salam Alaikum
    Is eating with spoon a bidha???


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