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How much Information can be determined from Istikhara?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

One of my aunties says that she can find a suitable date for some important task to be done through istikhara. For example, she said that she will find a suitable date for her daughter’s nikah and will not do nikah on any other date.

1. I would like to know if such detailed information can be determined by istikhara?
2. Is it right in the light of Islam to try finding about future in this manner?
3. If someone does it, what should we tell them?

I also know that she is in contact with some ‘aalim’, not ‘aamil’, who also lets her know such things about future.


In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

The word Istikharah literally means “to seek good”. Through Istikhara, a person seeks the assistance and blessings of Allah Ta’ala regarding some upcoming matter. Since Allah Ta’ala is the knower of the unseen and the scribe of destiny, we implore Him to decree that which is best for us whether it seems pleasing to us or not.

Istikharah is not a medium of foreseeing future events, acquiring knowledge of the unseen or determining detailed information of upcoming events.

When a person is planning to undertake some work in the near future and he is unsure about its outcome, whether it will be favorable or not, he should perform Istikharah. By doing so, one will find peace of heart and contentment in the end result of that affair. By performing Istikharah, a person will know that there will definitely be goodness in whatever Allah decreed to take place despite it not being according to his wishes and desires.

It is possible that at times, a person will feel a strong inclination or see a dream to carry out a certain act after performing Istikharah. However, this is not a general or necessary outcome and neither is it the main objective of Istikharah. If a person doesn’t experience such states, he shouldn’t feel as if the Istikharah wasn’t proper or that it is not working. After performing Istikharah, a person should have full conviction that whatever course of action he chooses to take, Allah Ta’ala will destine the best for him in that; whether his intention comes to fruition or not. Istikharah is a great bounty from the side of Allah Ta’ala. If a person implements it in his decision-making process, he will free himself from undue anxiety and depression. Furthermore, he will create a strong conviction in his heart that everything is in the control of Allah Ta’ala and that there will always be good, whether hidden or apparent, in the outcome.

  1. As previously mentioned, performing Istikharah will not unveil unforeseen events or information.
  2. Performing Istikharah, in the correct method and understanding, is praiseworthy in Islam.
  3. If someone has the incorrect understanding of Istikharah, you should educate him/her and present the proper understanding of it to them.

And Allah knows best


Ml. Yusuf bin Yaqub,
Student Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa, Madrassah In’aamiyyah

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

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