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 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 Step 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.

 

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 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.”

 

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 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.

 

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 Context

  • This is a second-level course in Step 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 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.

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 instead.

Curricular Context

  • Start here to complete STEP 1.
  • 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

 

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 instead.

Curricular Context

  • Start here to complete STEP 1.
  • 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.

 

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.

Curricular Context

  • This is a second-level course in Step 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.

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 money, and guarding your tongue.

Curricular Context

  • This is a second-level course in Step 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
    • 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)

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 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