Hadith about commencing matters with Bismillah

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Is the following a Hadith?

‘Every matter which is started without bismillah is useless’



The Hadith, with this exact wording is recorded by Khatib Baghdadi (rahimahullah) with a chain that is extremely unreliable, according to Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah)

(Al-Jami’u li Akhlaqir Rawi, Hadith: 1232 & Fathul Bari, Hadith: 4553. Also see Al-Isti’adhatu wal Hasbalah, of Shaykh Ahmad Siddique Al-Ghumari)


However, there are several other reasons for commencing our tasks with the name of Allah.

Among them are the following:

1) The Quran started with ‘Bismillah’

2) Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) commenced his letters to the various kings with ‘bismillah’

3) Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) said: ‘…When you recite Bismillah, shaytan contracts till he reaches the size of a fly.’

(Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith: 4943 & Musnad Ahmad, vol.5 pg.59 with a reliable chain; Majma’uz Zawaid, vol.10 pg.132)

After citing this Hadith, Hafiz Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) writes the following at the beginning of his monumental tafsir book:

‘This is the blessed effect of bismilah. Therefore it is recommended at the beginning of every deed or speech.’

4) He then cited Hadiths that clearly recommend reciting Bismillah before:

1. Meals,

2. Entering the toilet,

3. Engaging in sexual relations with one’s wife,

4. Wudu, etc.

These are merely a few examples. See Fathul Bari, Hadith: 4553 for more such supports for this practice.

One is indeed encouraged to say Bismillah before any task.


And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,

Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar


Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar

This answer was collected from The answers were either answered or checked by Moulana Haroon Abasoomar (rahimahullah) who was a Shaykhul Hadith in South Africa, or by his son, Moulana Muhammad Abasoomer (hafizahullah), who is a Hadith specialist. 

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