What is Faith (Imaan)?


Abu Huraira reported: One day the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) appeared before the public that a man came to him and said: Prophet of Allah, (tell me) what is Iman.

Upon this he (the Holy Prophet) replied: That you affirm your faith in Allah, His angels, His Books, His meeting, His Messengers and that you affirm your faith in the Resurrection hereafter.

He (again) said: Messenger of Allah, (tell me) what does al−Islam signify. He (the Holy Prophet) replied: Al−Islam signifies that you worship Allah and do not associate anything with Him and you establish obligatory prayer and you pay the obligatory poor−rate (Zakat) and you observe the fast of Ramadan. He (the inquirer) again said: Messenger of Allah, what does al−Ihsan imply?

He (the Holy Prophet) replied: That you worship Allah as if you are seeing Him, and in case you fail to see Him, then observe prayer (with this idea in your mind) that (at least) He is seeing you. He (the inquirer) again said: Messenger of Allah, when would there be the hour (of Doom)? He (the Holy Prophet) replied: The one who is asked about it is no better informed than the inquirer.

I, however, narrate some of its signs (and these are): when the slave−girl will give birth to he master, when the naked, barefooted would become the chiefs of the people − these are some of the signs of (Doom). (Moreover) when the shepherds of the black (camels) would exult themselves in buildings, this is one of the signs of (Doom). (Doom) is one of the five (happenings wrapped in the unseen) which no one knows but Allah.

Then he (the Messenger of Allah) recited (the verse):” Verily Allah! With Him alone is the knowledge of the hour and He it is Who sends (down the rain) and knows that which is in the wombs and no person knows whatsoever he shall earn tomorrow, and a person knows not in whatsoever land he shall die. Verily Allah is Knowing, Aware.

He (the narrator, Abu Huraira) said: Then the person turned back and went away. The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Bring that man back to me. They (the Companions of the Holy Prophet present there) went to bring him back, but they saw nothing there. Upon this the Messenger of Allah remarked: he was Gabriel, who came to teach the people their religion.

From: HADITH Sahih Muslim
Bk 1, Number 0004:
Bill McLean


  1. Hind Bin Abi Hala(Allah be pleased with him)has related:"The countenance of the Holy Prophet(SAW) was noble,diginified and majestic;it was lustrous like moon on the fourteenth(of the lunar month)….(Nashrut-tib)

  2. The word Iman means Belief and conviction in the heart,Speech of the tongue.Action of the limbs.Iman increases by performing good deeds and decreases by committing sins.Allah said: Verily,We have sent you(O Muhammad) as a witness as a bearer of good glad tidings and as a warner(48:8)The prophet(PBUH)said Iman is seventy odd branches: the highest is to say that non has the right to be worshiped but Allah,the lowest is to remove harm from the path,and modesty is a branch of Iman.(Muslim)

  3. There are many lessons in this hadith; one of which is urging Muslims to be persistent in seeking knowledge and asking knowledge from those who know. We also need to know Iman, Islam, Ihsaan, the day of the hour and its signs. If we are asked what we don't know, the best answer is to say: "Allah, with him is the knowledge"

    Allah will increase our knowledge and give us whatever we need (in knowledge).

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