In the name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful
Concept of Education
in Islam
Dr. Abdulazeez Abdulraheem
Importance of Education
– Allah says:
َ ‫م‬
ُ ِ‫هات‬
ُ ‫ج‬
ِ ‫ن ُبطُو‬
ِ ‫م‬
َ ‫م‬
َ ‫خ َر‬
ُ َّ ‫َوالل‬
ْ ‫ك‬
ْ ‫م‬
ْ ‫ك‬
ْ َ‫ه أ‬
َّ ‫ن ُأ‬
ُ َ‫م ال تَ ْعل‬
َ ‫م‬
َ ‫ج‬
‫صا َر َواأل َ ْف ِئ َد َة‬
ُ َ‫ل ل‬
َ ‫ع َواأل َ ْب‬
َ ‫ع‬
َ ‫ش ْيئاً َو‬
ْ ‫الس‬
ْ ‫ك‬
َ ‫ك ُر‬
َ َ‫ل‬
)78( ‫ون‬
ُ ‫َش‬
ُ َّ ‫عل‬
ْ ‫مت‬
ْ ‫ك‬
– Here the faculties mean the use of
hearing (collecting info), seeing
(observation), and thinking (deriving
new results).
– Whichever group excels in using it
becomes the leader, especially when
Muslims do not follow Islam.
Importance of Education
Difference between a Muslim and a nonMuslim and/or Kafir is in two areas:
– Knowledge; and
– Action
‫‪Knowledge – attribute of‬‬
‫)‪Allah. (‘Aleem‬‬
‫ي ٍء عَ ِليم‬
‫و بِ ُ‬
‫ل َ‬
‫– َوهُ َ‬
‫ك ِ‬
‫ش ْ‬
‫َ ا ْل َ‬
‫ح ِ‬
‫ك ال ِ‬
‫يم ا ْل َ‬
‫ك أَ ْن َ‬
‫م َت َنا إِن َّ َ‬
‫م لَ َنا إِال َّ َ‬
‫ع ْل َ‬
‫حانَ َ‬
‫س ْب َ‬
‫ما عَ ل َّ ْ‬
‫ك ُ‬
‫علِ ُ‬
‫– ُ‬
The only source – Allah
َ ‫حيط‬
‫شا َء‬
ِ ‫م‬
ِ ‫ع ْل‬
ِ ‫ن‬
ِ ‫ي ٍء‬
ِ ‫َوال ُي‬
َ ‫ما‬
َ ِ‫ه إِال َّ ب‬
َ ِ‫ُون ب‬
ْ ‫م‬
ْ ‫ش‬
Importance in Islam
)1( ‫ق‬
ِ َّ ‫ك ال‬
َ َ ‫خل‬
َ ‫ذي‬
َ ِ‫م َرب‬
ْ ِ‫ا ْق َر ْأ ب‬
ِ ‫اس‬
َ ‫نس‬
)3( ُ ِ ‫ان‬
َ ُّ‫) ا ْق َر ْأ َو َرب‬2( ‫ق‬
َ ‫اإل‬
َ َ ‫خل‬
ْ ‫م‬
ُ ‫ك األ َ ْك َر‬
ٍ َ‫ن عَ ل‬
ِ ‫ق‬
َ ‫نس‬
َ ‫م بِا ْل‬
)5( ‫م‬
ِ َّ ‫ال‬
َ ‫ان‬
َ ‫اإل‬
َ َّ ‫) عَ ل‬4( ‫م‬
َ َّ ‫ذي عَ ل‬
ْ َ‫م يَ ْعل‬
ْ َ‫ما ل‬
ِ َ ‫قل‬
ِ ‫م‬
5 words (on learning) in the first 5 verses
Revealed in an age which was not
information age
In a society of Ummiy-yoon where
extremely few knew how to read and write
The Prophet himself was Ummi
Reading Mentioned Twice in the
First 5 Verses!!!
– It emphasizes that we should be real
and prolific readers. The tragedy is that
when it comes to Qur’an:
– They (the others) read to learn; and
– We learn to read (and stop there). We
don’t try to understand the Qur’an!!!
Importance of knowledge in
َ ‫– يَ ْر‬
ُ ‫م ْن‬
ِ ‫ين ُأو ُتوا ا ْل‬
ِ َّ ‫م َوال‬
ِ ‫م ُنوا‬
ِ َّ ‫ه ال‬
َ ‫ع ْل‬
َ ‫ذ‬
َ ‫ين آ‬
َ ‫ذ‬
ُ َّ ‫فعْ الل‬
ْ ‫ك‬
َ ‫د َر‬
Allah has taught the Prophet pbuh, the
supplication: ً‫ع ْلما‬
ِ ‫ب ِز ْدنِي‬
ِ ‫ل َر‬
ْ ‫َو ُق‬
O my Lord! Increase me in knowledge.
‫‪Prophet’s role‬‬
‫‪ (I‬إنما بعثَ معلمًا ‪The Prophet pbuh said:‬‬
‫)‪am sent as a teacher.‬‬
‫‪Allah says:‬‬
‫م يَ ْتلُو‬
‫سوال ً ِ‬
‫َث فِي األُ ِ‬
‫و ال َّ ِ‬
‫م ِي َ‬
‫ذي بَع َ‬
‫هُ َ‬
‫م ْن ُه ْ‬
‫ين َر ُ‬
‫م َ‬
‫ح ْ‬
‫اب َوا ْل ِ‬
‫م آيَاتِ ِ‬
‫ك َ‬
‫م ا ْلكِ َت َ‬
‫م ُه ْ‬
‫يه ْ‬
‫ه ْ‬
‫م َو ُيعَلِ ُ‬
‫ه َو ُي َزكِ ِ‬
‫عَ لَ ْي ِ‬
‫ن َ‬
‫َوإِنْ َ‬
‫ل لَ ِفي َ‬
‫كا ُنوا ِ‬
‫ضال ٍ‬
‫م ْ‬
‫ل ُ‬
‫ق ْب ُ‬
‫م ِب ٍ‬
Prophet’s roles – The
Comprehensive Education
The verse mentions 4 roles:
• Recite the verses
• Do Tazkiah: Purify their lives (from
negatives) and enhance good qualities
• Teach them the Book
• Teach them the Hikmak
The above 4 are the real areas of education
in Islam. It is not just delivering
Information or knowledge or
much more…
– Our condition: “We are drowning in
information and starving for
– Hikmah is an abundant and huge gift of
Allah. It shows us how to use the
َ ‫ة‬
َ ‫م‬
َ ‫م‬
َ ‫ف‬
ْ ‫ح‬
ْ ‫ح‬
‫ق ْد‬
ِ ‫ت ا ْل‬
ِ ‫– ُي ْؤتِي ا ْل‬
َ ‫ك‬
َ ‫ن ُي ْؤ‬
َ ‫شا ُء َو‬
َ َ‫ن ي‬
َ ‫ة‬
َ ‫ك‬
ْ ‫م‬
ْ ‫م‬
ً‫ك ِثيرا‬
َ ً‫خ ْيرا‬
َ ‫ي‬
َ ِ‫ُأوت‬
Types of (knowledge)
There are only 2 types of knowledge in
1. Beneficial; and 2. Not beneficial
Note the supplications of the Prophet
ً ‫( اللهم إني أسئلك علمًا ناف‬O Allah! I
– ‫عا‬
ask you for the beneficial knowledge).
– ‫( اللهم إني أعوذ بك من علم ال ينفع‬O
Allah! I take refuge in You from useless
Classification of (knowledge) in
Islam according to Importance
1. Obligatory (‫)فرض‬
2. ‫( فرض كفاية‬Obligatory on society)
3. ‫( مستحب‬Desirable)
4. ‫( مباح‬permissible)
5. ‫( مكروه‬detested)
6. ُ ‫( حرا‬prohibited)
1. Obligatory Knowledge
On every Muslim; so that he can live
Islamically. He should know the basics of:
– Beliefs ‫عقائد‬
– Worships ‫عبادات‬
– Dealings ‫معامالت‬
– Prohibitions which lead to punishments
– Etiquettes of life‫آداب معاشرت‬
– Purification of heart ‫قلب‬
2. Fard Kifayah
In every locality, there has to be a group
which knows these areas otherwise the
whole society will be a sinner.
These are of Two types. Those which are:
– Means to know obligatory knowledge
)Qur’an, Hadith, Fiqh, Arabic, ..(. If we
know Qur’an, we can know our creed…
– Essential for a human society to excel
others (Science, Technology, Economics,
Business, Administration, Media…(. Our
focus is here, missing the first one!!!
Goal of Education in Islam
– Not just to learn for the sake of learning
– The goal should not to be left on
children. They are too young to come up
with one. You have to help them.
– If you don’t specify the goal, they will
make some mean or cheap goals
Allama Iqbal says:
– Knowledge gives power. This power
should be under Deen. Otherwise it is
pure Satanic. A Muslim must Islamize
his knowledge.
The Islamic Objectives
1. To produce individuals who believe
firmly in the individual and collective
system of Islam. To protect, practice,
and promote it.
2. To help in knowing Allah and the ways
to please Him using latest means at his
disposal (as a Khalifah).
3. To develop morals by following the
Prophet pbuh )Ta’leem + Tazkiah +
The Islamic Objectives (Contd.)
4. Live a balanced life (spiritual vs
material; self vs society; spending vs
saving; avoiding extremes)
5. To be expert in one’s own field
6. To have a vision and a mission along
with discipline … within the limits
given by Allah.
Develop the Educational System
– No nation can survive by copying the
Educational system of others
– Russians had developed their own after
communist revolution.
– Even in science, there are facts and
– Interpretation depends upon culture
(Ex: Water; Species)
Current Situation
We have two streams of education
• Deeni / Madrassa Education
• Secular / School Education
Deeni / Madrassa Education.
– Mostly out-of-date with current situation
– Originally designed for producing civil
servants (in Muslim rule); that is why
living in India, you don’t find any syllabus
for Dawah; or how to live and interact
with others in a multi-cultural society;
– Generates 1000’s of Huffaz but not even
1% know what they have memorized!
– Yes, their contribution is immense.
Especially in the absence of any
Secular / School Education
– Has no link with Islamic education.
– A subject (on Islamic Studies) is there
but it is confined mostly to beliefs,
worship, and morals.
– Nothing to do with the concept of
knowledge. Nothing to relate oneself
with other subjects.
Secular Education
– Students are taught Science, maths,
social studiens, politics, history, law,
management, economics, etc. etc. but
no where do you see any Islamic
– The one who has money and positions is
the successful one (Media, culture)
– Result: The whole life is built along
non-Islamic lines.
Current Status
– For masses (of students), this is what
we have
– So, we need to work more to save our
– Especially in the light of TV/Internet
and media onslaught against Islam and
Akbar Ilahabadi said (Urdu)
Yon qatl se bachchon ke wo badnaam na hota
Afsoos ke fir’oun ko college ki na soojhi
– Pisr mein bu aaye kyonkar …
– Doodh hai dabbey ka aur taleem hai sarkar ki
95% of our Students Study in
– Do they have a goal of life? It is not a
philosophical question.
– After spending 15, 20 years in
education, if a Muslim does not know his
goal, it is a disaster!!!
– Not just eat, live, and produce children
(just as animals do)
َ ‫كل‬
َ ‫ع‬
َ ‫ك‬
َ ‫ُون‬
َ ‫ين‬
ُ ‫َا‬
ُ ‫ما ت َْأ‬
ُ ‫ون َويَ ْأ‬
ِ َّ ‫َوال‬
ُ ‫م َّت‬
َ ‫ك‬
َ ‫ف ُروا يَ َت‬
َ ‫ذ‬
ُ ‫ل األ َ ْنع‬
ُ ‫ك‬
َ ‫َوال َّنا ُر‬
ْ ‫م ْثوًى لَ ُه‬
Without Goal!!!
– If our educated, leader, cream class
does not have a goal, forget about
others. It is a sign of a dying millat.
– Especially so because this millat is not
based on caste, color, race, or state. If
it looses goal, … forget the future!
Secular Education Prepares
Atheists & Materialistic Persons!
– Science: Anomalous expansion of water.
Not taught: The One Who created sea
creatures created water. This is not
– History: Egyptology, the most imp.
subject. Not taught: Why Moosa (A) is
mentioned most in the Qur’an.
– Economics: Not taught: You don’t have
to rely on interest.
When I graduated and went to
the University library…
I could hardly find books written by
Muslims (in almost all sciences).
I could not understand the role of Islam in
history until I read:
– “Islam and the World” by Ml. Abul Hasan
Ali Nadwi
– “Islam and Science” by Ml.
Waheeduddin Khan
– “Hijab” and “Al-Jihad fil Islam” by Ml.
My Goal then was…
– Just to survive or have a good life.
– As far as my role as a Muslim is
concerned: It was limited to praying
Namaz / Salah.
– With time it improved to serve Muslims.
– Now I know that it should be to serve
humanity, not just Muslims. This is the
way to serve Islam.
– But this teaching simply does not exist
in our educational system!
‫‪A Muslim’s Goal is Ibadah (in‬‬
‫)‪the full sense of the term‬‬
‫نس إِال َّ لِيَع ُْب ُدو ِ‬
‫ما َ‬
‫َو َ‬
‫َْ ا ْلجِ َّ‬
‫خلَق ُ‬
‫ن َو ِ‬
‫ماتِي لِل َّ ِ‬
‫م َ‬
‫حيَاي َو َ‬
‫سكِي َو َ‬
‫ل إِنَّ َ‬
‫م ْ‬
‫ُق ْ‬
‫صالتِي َو ُن ُ‬
‫ين (‪)162‬‬
‫ب ا ْلعَالَ ِ‬
‫َر ِ‬
‫م َ‬
‫اللهم باسمك أموت وأحيا‬
The Goal is repeated more
than 25 times everyday
)5( ‫ين‬
ِ ‫َس َت‬
َ ‫ك نَع ُْب ُد َوإِيَّا‬
َ ‫إِيَّا‬
ْ ‫كن‬
ُ ‫ع‬
)6( ‫م‬
ِ ‫اه‬
َ ‫س َت ِقي‬
ْ ‫م‬
ُ ‫الص َراطَ ا ْل‬
َ ‫ين أَ ْن‬
ِ َّ ‫ص َراطَ ال‬
َ ‫م‬
َ ‫ذ‬
ْ ‫ه‬
ْ ‫ع‬
ِ ‫َ عَ لَ ْي‬
)7( ‫ين‬
َّ ‫م َوال ال‬
َ ِ‫ضال‬
َ ‫ر ا ْل‬
ْ ‫ه‬
ُ ‫م ْغ‬
ِ ‫غ ْي‬
ِ ‫ضوبِ عَ لَ ْي‬
– Goal: To do Ibadah and be among the
َ ‫ )أَ ْن‬and not
first group ( ‫م‬
َ ‫م‬
ْ ‫ه‬
ْ ‫ع‬
ِ ‫َ عَ لَ ْي‬
among the last 2.
The Goal…
َ ‫ )أَ ْن‬:
Who are those ( ‫م‬
َ ‫م‬
ْ ‫ه‬
ْ ‫ع‬
ِ ‫َ عَ لَ ْي‬
– Prophets, Truthful, Martyrs, and
Let us just take the first group (Prophets)
and the top among them. Muhammad
He followed Allah’s will and became the
Most Successful (a/c to non-Muslims)
He achieved peace and happiness (the
ultimate goal) too.
To achieve that goal…
– Do our students ever bother to explore
his Seerah in detail (his faith, his
worshipping style, his time
management, his attitude, his
confidence, his relationship with
– Nobody tells them, nor prepares them,
nor reminds them, nor gives them a
plan, nor follows up their progress on
this path.
The Problem
– We shoot directly into Aakhirah only
– i.e., Pray Salah and you will be rewarded
in Aakhirah
– But Salah has to do with TODAY’S work
– The 5 prayers )+Qur’an study etc( do
not consume even 2 to 3 hours.
– What about the rest of the day? Is it
confined to only behaving well with
Imagine …
– A Muslim country of an-‘amta ‘alayhim:
– All Da’ees but beggars in every other
area. No doctors, no engineers, no
technicians, no nurses, no businessmen,
no economists, …. All these are either
Chrisitians, Hindus, or Buddhists…
– And when some outside power is
unhappy, you can expect a boycott or an
attack which may kill millions (as has
happened to Iraq or Afghanistan).
Imagine another case:
– A country/ society with a team of good
Muslims and Da’ees
– They have doctors, researchers,
inventors, scientists, engineers,
technocrats, economists, businessmen,
managers, and all other experts.
– Each group having very clear about its
vision and mission as a Muslim;
– Excellent interaction between them.
Don’t you think Allah wants such a society
for true Khilafah!
What after Salah?
– Whatever you do… counts towards
becoming excellent in your field.
– Towards forming that excellent team.
– So, for a student, he has to perform best
in studies (with the right intention)
– He reaches there step by step; day by
day’s work.
– He behaves best with parents, teachers,
friends, etc.
– Uses his time to optimum use.
Areas of Islamic Education
1. God’s word – Based on revelation –
2. God’s world – Using the 3 faculties
Allah gave to each one of us (listening,
watching, and using mind) - ‫معقوالت‬
Comprehensive Education
Allah’s Word (Direct studies)
Allah’s World (Supporting studies)
To live in Allah’s WORLD
and handle it according to Allah’s WORD…
to become true Khalifah…
Comprehensive Education
Start everyday with Allah’s word and then let the students
go to study Allah’s world!!!
QURAN (and Hadith)
Allah’s world
Important Features Islamic
Education - 1
– No division between religious and
– Up to high school, same syllabus for
– All essential subjects will be taught.
– Supporting subjects (Maths, Sciences,
etc.) will be taught in the spirit of Islam.
– A student will look at this world with
Islamic vision.
Important Features Islamic
Education - 2
After high school, education for
Specialists in
– Qur’an, Hadith, Fiqh, History
– Tarbiyah, Dawah,
– Islamic Social sciences
– Islamic Philosophies
– Comparative religion
– Islamic Economists
Current Reality
– No such system exists (in secular and
most Muslim countries)
– Islamic Studies is just one subject in our
– It is the Most neglected, abused, and
last in priority
– No supervision or follow up for it
– Most importantly – Qur’an is missing!
(except for rote memorization of few
Surahs and their translation passages)
If we keep Islam as …
– If we keep it as the lowest priority
– Our children will treat Islam as the
lowest priority when they grow up
Islamic Education
A responsibility on every one
• School
• Masjid
• Home
• Neighbors/elders/society
Taleem + Tarbiyah at home too
– Do it at home too. You can’t rely on
school alone
– The parents have to get involved
An Appeal
– Try to get understanding of the Qur’an
teaching into curriculum of your school too. It
is the most important subject.
– Almost no school, even Muslim schools teach it
to the full.
– A high school graduate should be able to
understand the full Qur’an and listen to at least
a big book on Hadith (like Riyadhus-saliheen or
Bulooghul Maraam).
– It needs only 200 hours of teaching for adults
and around 300 or little more for students.
Visit for details.

In the name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful