The Most Authentic Books on True Islamic Aqidah (Creed) – Imam Ibn Baaz (rahimahullaah)


7- The most authentic books on “Aqidah

Q: Please guide me to the most authentic book on true Islamic Aqidah (creed)! May Allah grant you success!

A: The most authentic, noblest and greatest book dealing with the subject of Aqidah and other subjects is the Glorious Qur’an. It contains the most truthful speech. No falsehood can approach it from before or behind it. It is a revelation from Allah, the All-Wise, the Praiseworthy. I advise the inquirer and all Muslims to hold fast to the Qur’an and to give it due attention by reciting it often, reflecting on its meanings and trying hard to memorize as many chapters of it as possible. It is the Greatest Book which Allah has sent down to His servants so that they may memorize it, follow its teachings and act upon it. It contains plain truths and clear guidance.

Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) states, «Verily, this Qur’an guides to that which is most just and right»

He (Glorified be He) also says,« it is an honourable well-fortified respected Book (because it is Allah’s Speech, and He has protected it from corruption)» «Falsehood cannot come to it from before it or behind it: (it is) sent down by the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise (Allah azza wa jal)». and: «And We have sent down to you the Book (the Qur’an) as an exposition of everything, a guidance, a mercy, and glad tidings for those who have submitted themselves (to Allah as Muslims)

I thus advise the inquirer to care for this Great Book, recite it frequently, ponder over its meanings, study it together with colleaques and fellows, and refer to reliable books of Tafsir (exegesis of the meanings of the Qur’an), such as the book entitled “Adwa’ Al-Bayan” for Al-Baghawy, Tafsir Ibn Kathir (may Allah be merciful to them all), and the like. They may also refer to commentaries of other Mufassirs (exegetes of the Qur’an) who clarified the meanings of the Ayahs of the Qur’an, citing related Hadiths of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him).

I advise you my fellow brother to study the Book of Allah and to pay due concern to the Sunnah (whatever reported from the Prophet) of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), which contains guidance and light. You may refer to such books as Sahih Al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim and the remaining four collections of Hadith (Abu Dawud, Al-Tirmidhi, Al-Nasa’i, and Ibn Majah).

There are also many other books which explain the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him), including the Muwatta’ of Imam Malik (may Allah be merciful to him), the Sunan of Al-Darimi (may Allah be merciful to him), the Sahih of Ibn Khuzaymah, the Sahih of Ibn Hibban, Al-Hakim and other books which are very beneficial.

If you have some knowledge of Hadith, you will be able to differentiate between authentic and false Hadiths cited in the books referred to above. The Two Sahih (authentic) Books of Hadith (i.e. Al-Bukhari and Muslim) are an exception to this. The Muslim Ummah (community) has unanimously agreed on the authenticity of all the Hadiths compiled in them.

You are also advised to follow in the footsteps of the righteous scholars of Hadith. The Two Sahih Books of Hadith have gained the credibility of AhI-ul- Sunnah wal-Jama ‘ah (adherents to the Sunnah and the Muslim mainstream). The Muslim Ummah has also acknowledged them as authentic. Therefore, you must adhere to them tenaciously. You must also hold fast to the Book of Allah, the remaining four books of Sunan and the books we just mentioned. Scholars of Hadith have pointed out weak Hadiths and have given reasons for their weakness.

As for books on the topic of “Aqidah, they are many. One of the best books in this regard is the “Kitab Al-Tawhid” by Ibn Khuzaymah, “Kitab Al-Sunnah” by *Abdullah Ibn Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, “Minhaj Al-Sunnah”, by Shaykh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, which refutes the claims of the Mutazilites, and “Zad Al-Ma‘ad” by Ibn Al-Qayyim, knowing that the latter is very good reference in the field of “Aqidah and rulings of Shariah (Islamic Law). Other books include “Ijtima Al-Juyush Al-Islamiyyah” by Ibn Al-Qayyim which refutes the claims of innovators in religious matters, “Al-Sawa ‘iq Al-Mursalah” by Ibn Al-Qayyim, which also involves refutation of the claims of innovators in religious matters, and “Al- Aqidah Al-Wasitiyyah” by Shaykh-ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah. This is a concise book which involves great benefit to Muslims. It is in line with the guidance of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jama ‘ah, and Shaykh- ul-Islam advised all Muslims, particularly seekers of knowledge, to memorize it, as it contains clear illustration of the doctrine of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jama ‘ah. Shaykh-ul-Islam also authored a book entitled “Al-Risalah Al-Hamawiyyah” which answers questions posed by the people of Hamah concerning proper understanding of Allah’s Names and Attributes, and other questions related to Aqidah. Upon visiting the people of Tadmur, he also wrote an epistle which he entiteled “Al-Risalah Al-Tadmuriyyah”. It is a great piece which clarifies sound Aqidah. There is also a book entitled “Al- Aqidah Al-Tahawiyyah” by Imam Al- Izz. It is wonderfully written. There is also another book called “Kitab Al-Tawhid” written by Shaykh-ul-Islam Muhammad Ibn Abdul-Wahhab (may Allah be merciful to him), which is a valuable book. He also wrote “At-Thatlathat Al-Usul”. He also wrote a short treatise on Aqidah. Another book called “Fat-h Al-Majid Sharh Kitab Al-Tawhid” was written by his grandson Shaykh ‘Abdul-Rahman Ibn Hasan Ibn Al-Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Abdul-Wahhab. It is a great and useful book. The book was annotated by Shaykh Sulayman Ibn ‘Abdullah Ibn Muhammad Ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhab. He titled it “Taysir Al- Aziz Al-Hamid li-Sharh Kitab Al-Tawhid“. It is also a great and useful book.

I advise all Muslims to refer to and benefit from these and other beneficial books on the subject of Aqidah. I again stress the fact that the Qur’an is the greatest, noblest and most truthful of all books. It is the greatest remedy for those who seek healing for their souls. The Salaf (righteous predecessors) did not have any other book except the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him). The Sahabah (Companions of the Prophet) and the Tabi‘un (Followers, the generation after the Companions of the Prophet) had only the Glorious Qur’an and the Hadiths of the Prophet (peace be upon him), and they were sufficient for them. They contain every type of guidance. However, there is nothing wrong in referring to the books of well known and reliable scholars as has been mentioned.

There is no harm in making use of their writings, benefiting from them or calling other people to benefit from them. Some people may not trust their own understanding of the Qur’an and Sunnah, and when they refer to books written by reliable scholars and such references happen to be in conformity with their understanding, their knowledge is further enhanced and their hearts are set at ease. Allah alone grants success.

(Part No. 1; Page No. 26- 29)

Source: English Translations of Collection of “Noor ala Al-Darb” Programs, Volume 1. By: Sheikh `Abdul `Aziz Bin `Abdullah ibn `AbdulRahman ibn Bazz (May Allah forgive and reward al-Firdouse to him and his parents). He was The Mufti of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Chairman of the Council of Senior Scholars, and Chairman of Department of Scholarly Research and Ifta’.

This English Translations are collected from , Portal of the General Presidency

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  5. Shaykh Muhammad Amaan al-Jaamee on the Books a Student of Knowledge Should Read in the Areas of ‘Aqeedah, Tafseer, Hadeeth and its Sciences, and Fiqh