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In the name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful

Concept of
Education in Islam
Dr. Abdulazeez Abdulraheem

Importance of Education

Allah says:
َ َ‫جع‬
‫ل‬ ‫و‬ ً ‫ا‬ ‫يئ‬ َ
‫ش‬ ‫ن‬ ‫مو‬ َ ‫ل‬‫ع‬ ‫ت‬ ‫ل‬ ‫م‬ ُ ‫ك‬ ِ ‫ت‬‫ها‬ ‫م‬ُ ‫طون أ‬ُ ‫ب‬ ‫ن‬ ‫م‬ ‫م‬ُ ‫ك‬ ‫ج‬ ‫ر‬ ‫خ‬
ْ َ ‫والل ّه أ‬
َ َ ْ َ ُ ْ َ ْ َ ّ ِ ُ ْ ِ ْ َ َ ُ َ
78) ‫ن‬ َ ‫شك ُُرو‬ ُْ ‫صاَر َوال َفْئ ِد َةَ ل َعَل ّك‬
ْ َ‫م ت‬ َ ْ َ ‫)ل َك ُم السمعَ وال‬
‫ب‬ َ ْ ّ ْ
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

non-Muslim and/or Kafir is in two
Knowledge; and

‫‪Knowledge – attribute of‬‬
‫)‪Allah. (‘Aleem‬‬

‫يءٍ ع َِلي ٌ‬
‫ش ْ‬ ‫وَهُوَ ب ِك ُ ّ‬
‫ل َ‬

‫م‬ ‫كي‬ ‫ح‬ ‫ْ‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ا‬ ‫م‬ ‫لي‬ ‫ع‬‫ْ‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ا‬ ‫ت‬ ‫ن‬‫َ‬ ‫أ‬ ‫َ‬
‫ك‬ ‫ن‬ ‫إ‬ ‫نا‬ ‫ت‬ ‫م‬ ‫ّ‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ع‬ ‫ما‬ ‫ّ‬ ‫ل‬‫إ‬ ‫نا‬ ‫َ‬ ‫ل‬ ‫م‬ ‫ْ‬ ‫حان َ َ‬
‫ُ‬ ‫ِ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫ُ‬ ‫ِ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫ْ‬ ‫ّ‬ ‫ِ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫ْ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫ِ َ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫عل َ‬‫كل ِ‬ ‫سب ْ َ‬

The only source – Allah

َ ‫ما‬
‫شاَء‬ ِ ْ ‫عل‬
َ ِ ‫مهِ إ ِل ّ ب‬ ِ ‫ن‬
ْ ‫م‬
ِ ٍ‫يء‬ َ ِ‫ن ب‬
ْ ‫ش‬ ُ ‫حي‬
َ ‫طو‬ ِ ُ ‫َول ي‬

Importance in Islam
1) َ‫خل َق‬ ْ ‫) اقْرأ‬
َ ‫ذي‬ ِ ّ ‫ك ال‬
َ ّ ‫سم ِ َرب‬ ‫با‬
ْ ِ َ
ِ ّ ‫( ال‬3) ‫م‬ َ َ ّ ‫( اقْرأ ْ ورب‬2) ‫من عَل َق‬ َ ‫خل‬
‫ذي‬ ُ ‫ك الك َْر‬ ََ َ ٍ ْ ِ ‫ن‬
َ ‫سا‬َ ‫لن‬
ِ ‫ا‬ َ ‫ق‬ َ
5) ‫م‬ ْ َ ‫م ي َعْل‬
ْ َ ‫ما ل‬ َ ‫ن‬َ ‫سا‬ َ ‫لن‬ِ ‫ما‬ َ ّ ‫( عَل‬4) ِ ‫قل َم‬
َ ْ ‫م ِبال‬ َ ّ ‫)عَل‬
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
ْ ْ ُ
َ ‫ن أوُتوا العِل‬ ِ ّ ‫م َوال‬
َ ‫ذي‬ ْ ُ ‫من ْك‬
ِ ‫مُنوا‬
َ ‫نآ‬ ِ ّ ‫ه ال‬
َ ‫ذي‬ ُ ّ ‫ي َْرفَعْ الل‬
‫ت‬ٍ ‫جا‬َ ‫د ََر‬

Allah has taught the Prophet pbuh, the

supplication: ً ‫عْلما‬
ِ ‫ب زِد ِْني‬ ْ ُ‫وَق‬
ّ ‫ل َر‬
O my Lord! Increase me in knowledge.

‫‪Prophet’s role‬‬

‫ما ‪The Prophet pbuh said:‬‬

‫‪ (I‬إنما بعثت معل ً‬
‫)‪am sent as a teacher.‬‬

‫‪Allah says:‬‬
‫م‬ ‫ه‬ ‫ي‬‫َ‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ع‬ ‫لو‬‫ُ‬ ‫ت‬ ‫ي‬ ‫م‬ ‫ه‬ ‫ن‬ ‫م‬ ‫ً‬ ‫ل‬ ‫سو‬ ‫ُ‬ ‫هُوَ ال ّ ِ‬
‫َ ِْ ْ‬ ‫ِ ُْ ْ َْ‬ ‫ث ِفي ال ّ ّ َ َ ُ‬
‫ر‬ ‫ن‬ ‫يي‬ ‫م‬ ‫ذي ب َعَ َ‬
‫كاُنوا‬‫ن َ‬ ‫ة وَإ ِ ْ‬ ‫حك ْ َ‬
‫م َ‬ ‫ب َوال ْ ِ‬ ‫م ال ْك َِتا َ‬ ‫م وَي ُعَل ّ ُ‬
‫مه ُ ْ‬ ‫آَيات ِهِ وَي َُز ّ‬
‫كيهِ ْ‬
‫ن‬ ‫بي‬
‫ِ‬ ‫م‬
‫ُ‬ ‫ل‬‫ٍ‬ ‫ضل‬ ‫َ‬ ‫في‬ ‫ِ‬ ‫َ‬ ‫لل‬ ‫ن قَب ْ ُ‬‫م ْ‬ ‫ِ‬

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.

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 ف‬
ْ ‫قد‬ َ ‫م‬ َ ْ ‫حك‬ِ ْ ‫ت ال‬ َ ْ ‫ن ي ُؤ‬
ْ ‫م‬ َ َ‫ن ي‬
َ َ‫شاُء و‬ ْ ‫م‬
َ ‫ة‬
َ ‫م‬ ِ ْ ‫ي ُؤ ِْتي ال‬
َ ْ ‫حك‬
ً ‫خْيرا ً ك َِثيرا‬ َ ‫ي‬ ُ
َ ِ ‫أوت‬

Types of (knowledge)

There are only 2 types of knowledge

in Islam:
1. Beneficial; and 2. Not beneficial
Note the supplications of the Prophet
‫ما نافًعا‬
ً ‫( اللهم إني أسئلك عل‬O Allah! I ask
you for the beneficial knowledge).
‫( اللهم إني أعوذ بك من علم ل ينفع‬O Allah! I
take refuge in You from useless
knowledge). 1212
Classification of (knowledge) in
Islam according to Importance
1. Obligatory (‫)فرض‬
2. ‫( فرض كفاية‬Obligatory on society)
3. ‫( مستحب‬Desirable)
4. ‫( مباح‬permissible)
5. ‫( مكروه‬detested)
6. ‫( حرام‬prohibited)

1. Obligatory Knowledge

On every Muslim; so that he can live Islamically.

He should know the basics of:
Beliefs ‫عقائد‬
Worships ‫عبادات‬
Dealings ‫معاملت‬
Prohibitions which lead to punishments ‫عقوبات‬
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!!! 1515
Goal of Education in Islam

Not just to learn for the sake of

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 + Himkmah)

The Islamic Objectives (Contd.)

4. Live a balanced life (spiritual vs material; self

vs society; spending vs saving; avoiding
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
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 alternative
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

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
Not just eat, live, and produce children
(just as animals do)
َ ْ ‫فروا يتمتعون ويأ ْك ُُلون ك َما تأ‬
‫م َوالّناُر‬ ‫عا‬
ُ َْ ‫ن‬ ‫ل‬‫ا‬ ُ
‫ل‬ ُ ‫ك‬ َ َ َ ََ َ ُّ َ ََ ُ َ َ‫ن ك‬ ِ ّ ‫َوال‬
َ ‫ذي‬
‫م‬ْ ُ‫وى ل َه‬
ً ْ ‫مث‬

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 automatic.
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
“Hijab” and “Al-Jihad fil Islam” by Ml.
Maudoodi 3030
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
‫ن‬ ‫س إ ِل ّ ل ِي َعْب ُ ُ‬
‫دو ِ‬ ‫لن َ‬
‫ن َوا ِ‬ ‫ت ال ْ ِ‬
‫ج ّ‬ ‫خل َ ْ‬
‫ق ُ‬ ‫ما َ‬
‫وَ َ‬

‫ماِتي ل ِل ّهِ َر ّ‬
‫ب‬ ‫م َ‬‫حَياي وَ َ‬
‫م ْ‬
‫كي وَ َ‬
‫س ِ‬
‫صلِتي وَن ُ ُ‬
‫ن َ‬ ‫قُ ْ‬
‫ل إِ ّ‬
‫ن )‪162‬‬ ‫)ال َْعال َ ِ‬
‫مي َ‬

‫اللهم باسمك أموت وأحيا‬

The Goal is repeated more
than 25 times everyday
5) ‫ن‬ ُ ‫ست َِعي‬ ْ َ‫ك ن‬ َ ‫ك ن َعْب ُد ُ وَإ ِّيا‬َ ‫)إ ِّيا‬
6) ‫م‬ َ ‫قي‬ ِ َ ‫ست‬ْ ‫م‬ ُ ْ ‫ط ال‬َ ‫صَرا‬ ّ ‫)اهْدَِنا ال‬
َ َ
ْ ِْ َ َ ْ َْ‫نأ‬
‫ه‬ ‫ي‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ع‬ ‫ت‬ ‫م‬ ‫ع‬ ‫ن‬ َ ‫ذي‬ ِ ّ ‫ط ال‬ َ ‫صَرا‬ ِ
7) ‫ن‬ َ ‫ضاّلي‬ ّ ‫م َول ال‬ ْ ِ‫ب عَل َي ْه‬ ِ ‫ضو‬ ُ ْ‫مغ‬َ ْ ‫)غَي ْرِ ال‬

Goal: To do Ibadah and be among the

first group (‫م‬ َ َ
ْ ِ‫ت عَلي ْه‬
َ ‫م‬
ْ َ‫ ) أن ْع‬and not among
the last 2.
The Goal…

Who are those (‫م‬ ‫ه‬ ‫ي‬َ ‫ل‬َ ‫ع‬ ‫ت‬ ‫م‬ ‫ع‬ ‫ن‬َ‫ ) أ‬:
ْ ِْ َ ْ َ ْ
Prophets, Truthful, Martyrs, and Righteous
Let us just take the first group (Prophets) and
the top among them. Muhammad pbuh.
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
others? 3636
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! 3838
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,
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) - ‫معقولت‬

Comprehensive Education
Click icon to add table

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 icon to add with
table Allah’s word and then let the students
go to study Allah’s world!!!



QURAN (and Ayyamill Allah’s GOD’S

Hadith) STUDY ah world KINGDOM
Important Features Islamic
Education - 1
No division between religious and secular.
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

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) 4545
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
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).
Go to the link below to learn more: http