Ustadh Abu Humayd began the “Explanation of the 5 pillars” with a discussion of the 2 Testifications of Faith. The benefits will be taken from “Important lessons for the Muslims” of Shaykh Abdul Aziz Ibn Baaz Rahimahullaah.

The Shaykh began his first lesson within the book mentioning a few short surahs from the Qur’an, as he believed that every muslim should have at least some of the Surahs of the Qur’an memorised. He began in particular with Surat Al Fatihah as it is a pillar of the salah, which we must recite in every rak’ah of our prayer. After this, he explained from Surat Al Zalzalah to Surat An Naas. These surahs and their explanation comprise the first lesson.


The second lesson was the 5 Pillars of Islam (which we will cover) is about the first and greatest pillar – the testification of faith.

“Laa Ilaaha Illa Allaah Muhammad Ar Rasool Allaah”


“There is no deity worthy of worship in truth except Allaah and Muhammad Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam is the Messenger of Allaah.”


Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah is split into two parts.


1) “Laa Illaaha” – A Negation of everything that is worshipped other than Allaah. It is a general negation for absolutely everything, animals, idols, righteous men, etc.

2) “Illa Allaah” – An Affirmation of all worship being directed to Allaah alone. (Affirming that which was negated in the first part). It is a specific affirmation specifically for Allaah subhaanahu wa ta’aalah.

More examples of this negation and affirmation are the sayings of Allaah:

“And your Lord decreed that you do not worship except Him.” 17:23

“They were not commanded except to worship Allaah making the religion purely for him” 98:5

“Worship Allaah and do not associate partners with Him.” 4:36

“And We sent a Messenger to every nation proclaiming: Worship Allaah and stay away from the false gods” 16:36

“So whoever disbelieves in the false gods and believes in Allaah alone, then he has held onto the strong handhold” 2:256



The definition of Islam: To submit to Allaah upon Tawhid, complying to Him, freeing ourselves from Shirk (polytheism – worshipping others besides Allaah) and its people.

To say the meaning of Islaam is peace is not correct. Islaam brings about peace in the heart and the lands, however, it is not the meaning of Islaam.

As it relates to submission to Allaah, there are 3 types of people;

  • The one who refuses to submit, is Mustakbir (Haughty and Proud). I.e. Athiests
  • The one submits to Allaah and others, is a Mushrik (Associates partners). I.e. Christians and Jews
  • The one who submits to Allaah alone, is a Muwahid (Singles out Allaah alone).


In a Hadith narrated by Ibn Umar RadhiAllaahu Anhuma:

The Prophet Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam said:

“Islam is built upon 5. The testification that none has the right to be worshipped in truth except Allaah, and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah. To establish the salah, to give the zakah, to perform the Hajj and to fast Ramadhan.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

This hadith does not mean that there are only 5 obligations in the religion. There are many others, known as the “Mukamillaat”, for example:

  • -Being good to parents
  • -Being good to neighbours
  • -To dress modestly
  • -Honour contracts
  • -Others

These Mukamillaat will not be accepted if your first pillar is not present.

The mushrikoon at the time of the Prophet Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam understood the meaning of Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah.

Allaah says in the Quran:

“If it is said to them say Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah, they would become haughty and would say “Shall we leave our gods for a mad poet?”” 37:35


“Has he made all the gods into one? Indeed this is something strange!” 37:36


This shows that they understood that they would have to abandon their false gods. Unfortunately, some people from our Ummah have not understood this. They would explain Laa Illaaha Illaa Allaah as “There is no creator except Allaah”. This is not the meaning. Yes, it is included within it, yet it is not the meaning. Believing that Allaah is the only one worthy of worship necessitates that you believe He is the only Creator.

If the meaning of Laa Ilaaha Illa Allaah was “There is no creator except Allaah” then even the mushrikoon would have been muslims as they used to affirm that Allaah alone is the Creator (as is mentioned by Allaah in the Qur’an) yet the Prophet Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam fought them.


The Shahaadah has conditions, just like the prayer, zakah, Hajj, etc. have conditions. We must study it correctly, and teach it to our families as it is the most important of the pillars.

The conditions are the following:


  • Knowledge, negating Ignorance, means:

Having a strong understanding of the statement so that you are not from those who are ignorant of it.

Allaah says: “So know, that none has the right to be worshipped in truth except Allaah” 47:19

Allaah began with knowledge because it is the foundation of his belief.


  • Certainty, negating Doubt, means:

Certainty is the completion of knowledge. It is not permissible to doubt the statement.

Allaah says: “The believers are those who believe in Allaah and His Messenger, then they have no doubt.” 49:15

The Prophet Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam said to Abu Hurayrah: “Whoever you meet, behind this wall, and he testifies to Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah, whilst his heart has certainty, then give him glad tidings of Jannah” Muslim


  • Sincerity, negating Polytheism, means:
    Also negates Ar Riyaa (showing off).

Allaah says: “They were not commanded except to worship Allaah making the religion purely for him” 98:5

Hadith: “The happiest person who will have my intercession will be the one who said sincerely (from his heart): None is worthy of worship except Allah. Bukhari

Hadith Qudsi: “I am the most free from having partners. Whomsoever performs an action in which he makes a partner with me, then I have abandoned him and his shirk.” Muslim


  • Truthfulness, negating Lying, means:
    Hadith: “There is none who testifies truthfully from his heart that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammed (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) is His servant and Messenger, except that Allah will save him from Hell-Fire.” Bukhari


  • Love, negating Hatred, means:

In saying this statement, you must love Allaah, His Messenger, His Religion and the Muslims who uphold the legislation of Allaah. You must detest those who oppose the statement.

Allaah says: “And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allah as rivals (to Allah). They love them as they love Allah.” (2:165)

Hadith: “I ask You for Love of You. And that I love the one who loves you. And the love of actions that bring me closer to your Love.”

Hadith: “The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahll ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: Whoever

possesses the following three qualities will attain the sweetness of faith:

1) Allah and His Messenger are dearer to him than anything else

2) To love a person for nothing except the sake of Allah

3) To hate to revert to disbelief (kufr) after having been saved from it by Allah, as he hates to be thrown into the Hell-Fire  Bukhari and Muslim


  • Compliance, negating Abandonment, means:

Allaah says: “And whosoever submits his face (himself) to Allah [i.e. (follows Allah’s Religion of Islamic Monotheism), worships Allah (Alone) with sincere Faith in the (1) Oneness of His Lordship, (2) Oneness of His worship, and (3) Oneness of His Names and Qualities], while he is a Muhsin (good-doer i.e. performs good deeds totally for Allah’s sake without any show-off or to gain praise or fame etc. and does them in accordance with the Sunnah of Allah’s Messenger Muhammad SAW), then he has grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold [La ilaha ill-Allah (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah)]. And to Allah return all matters for decision.” 31:22

And: “And turn in repentance and in obedience with true Faith (Islamic Monotheism) to your Lord and submit to Him, (in Islam)” meaning submit and comply to that which Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah necessitates. 39:54


  • Acceptance, negating Rejection, means:

Allaah says: “Truly, when it was said to them: La ilaha ill-Allah “(none has the right to be worshipped but Allah),” they puffed themselves up with pride (i.e. denied it).” 37:35

“And (they) said: “Are we going to abandon our aliha (gods) for the sake of a mad poet?” 37:36


Some scholars add an 8th:

  • Disbelief in all of that which is worshipped other than Allaah, means:

Allaah says: “Whoever disbelieves in Taghut and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break” 2:256


All of these conditions are derived from the same source that we derived the conditions for Salah, Zakah, etc. (i.e. The Qur’an and Sunnah).


It was said to Wahb Ibn Munnabih:

“Is Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah not the key to Paradise?” He said, “Of Course, but there is not a key except that it has its teeth. If you come with a key with its teeth, the gate will be opened for you.”


There are those who believe, as long as you verbally say “Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah” you will enter Jannah.

The refutation of this statement is the saying of Allaah:

“When the hypocrites come to you, they say: “We bear witness that you are indeed the Messenger of Allah.” Allah knows that you are indeed His Messenger and Allah bears witness that the hypocrites are liars indeed.” (63:1)

If the mere utterance of the statement was enough, then they would have been considered muslims, but this is not the case.

The meaning of “Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah” is:


  • Believe in that which he informed us of
  • Obeying him in that which he commanded
  • Leaving off everything he forbade and warned from
  • Dont worship Allaah except with that which he legislated.


For any action to be accepted it must go back to the 2 testifications of faith: with sincerity to Allaah (from Laa Illaaha Illa Allaah) and in accordance to the teachings of Muhammad Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam (from Muhammad Ar Rasool Allaah).