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If you’re not an Islamaphobe, are you a still considered a kafir (Disbeliever)?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

What constitutes as kufr. I mean I know a kafir is someone who knows islam is truth but rejects it correct. So for example there are many non muslims who have heard of islam, but they are not islamophobes and regard it as just another religion. Since it has not been presented to them in a way for them to think it is the truth, are they considered kaafir?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

You query what constitutes Kufr? By way of example you explained that if a person is not a Muslim but he did not reject Islam and he is not “Islamaphobic”, he should not be a kafir. In order to answer your query, it is important to briefly understand the definition of Iman which is,

  • تصديق بالقلب: To believe from the heart all the laws of Allah as revealed to Rasulullah (ﷺ) [1]
  • إقرار بالسان: To verbally testify to such beliefs [2]
  • عمل بالجوارح: To physically practice on such laws [3]

The above three constituents of Iman are deduced from the following narrations:

عن ابنِ عمر قال: قالَ رسولُ الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم -:

بُنيَ الإسلامُ على خَمسٍ: شهادةِ أَنْ لا إلهَ إلاَّ الله، وأَنَّ محمداً رسول الله، وإقامِ الصَّلاة، وإيتاءِ الزكاةِ، والحجِّ، وصوْمِ رمضانَ 

Ibn Umar (Radhiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (ﷺ) said: Islam is based on five (pillars), testifying the fact that there is no one worthy of worship except Allah, and Muhammad (ﷺ) is the Messenger of Allah, establishing the Salah, paying Zakat, performing Hajj, and fasting during the month of Ramadan.”[4]

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، قَالَ كَانَ النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم بَارِزًا يَوْمًا لِلنَّاسِ، فَأَتَاهُ جِبْرِيلُ فَقَالَ مَا الإِيمَانُ قَالَ ‏”‏ الإِيمَانُ أَنْ تُؤْمِنَ بِاللَّهِ وَمَلاَئِكَتِهِ وَبِلِقَائِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ، وَتُؤْمِنَ بِالْبَعْثِ ‏

Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallahu Anhu) narrates that one day while Nabi (ﷺ) was sitting in the company of some people, Jibra’il (Alaihis Salaam) came and asked, “What is Iman?” Nabi (ﷺ) replied, “Iman is to believe in Allah, His angels, (the) meeting with Him, His Apostles, and to believe in Resurrection.”[5]

It is clear from the above that merely knowing of Islam but not being “Islamaphobic” or not rejecting Islam is not sufficient for one to be excluded from being a Kafir. Such a person will still be considered a non-Muslim (Kafir). Consider the following verse:

وَمَن يَبۡتَغِ غَيۡرَ ٱلۡإِسۡلَـٰمِ دِينً۬ا فَلَن يُقۡبَلَ مِنۡهُ وَهُوَ فِى ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ مِنَ ٱلۡخَـٰسِرِينَ

Whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted from him, and he, in the Hereafter, will be among the losers. (Surah Al-Imran: Ayah: 85)

Furthermore, every human being is created with a natural instinct of belief in Allah. It his/ her responsibility to explore that further especially in this era of technology when Islam and Muslims are the most common subject of news and there is so much information available on Islam.

Lastly, being able to coexist with non-Muslims, in particular those that are not “Islamaphobic”, grants us the ideal opportunity to act upon one of the greatest Sunnah of Rasulullah (ﷺ) and present Islam to them in a cordial and truthful manner. Consider the following verse:

ٱدۡعُ إِلَىٰ سَبِيلِ رَبِّكَ بِٱلۡحِكۡمَةِ وَٱلۡمَوۡعِظَةِ ٱلۡحَسَنَةِ‌ۖ

Invite (people) to the way of your Lord with wisdom and good counsel. (Surah Nahl: Ayah: 125)

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Abdullah ibn Mohammed Aijaz

Student Darul Iftaa
Baltimore, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

[1] البحر الرائق شرح كنز الدقائق ومنحة الخالق وتكملة الطوري (5/ 129)

[2]البحر الرائق شرح كنز الدقائق ومنحة الخالق وتكملة الطوري  (5/ 129)

 وهل هو فقط أو هو مع الإقرار قولان فأكثر الحنفية على الثاني والمحققون على الأول والإقرار شرط إجراء أحكام الدنيا بعد الاتفاق على أنه يعتقد متى طولب به أتى به فإن طولب به فلم يقر فهو كفر عناد


[3]A. البحر الرائق (5/ 201)

وأفعال تصدر من المتهتكين لدلالتها على الاستخفاف بالدين كالصلاة بلا وضوء عمدا

B. Aap ke Masaail aur unka hal: V.1/PG. 23-24, 51

C. Ahsanul Fataawa: V.1/ PG.35.37

[4] مختصر صحيح الإمام البخاري (1/ 20)

[5] صحيح البخاري (1/ 19)َ

This answer was collected from Askimam.org, which is operated under the supervision of Mufti Ebrahim Desai from South Africa.

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