Fatwa: # 44346
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Date: 20th March 2020


What does it mean to follow the Sunnah?


My question is in regards to following sunnah of rasuallah sallahu alai hi wasalam.

What does it mean to follow sunnah?  Is it reciting sura mulk every night before bed or cleansing of the heart is also sunna like tasawuff to beautfiy over inner character and outer character?  Please reply back.




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

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

We commend you on your concern to follow the Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). As Muslims, the Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is an integral part of our lives. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is an embodiment of perfection and our role model. Thus, we should try to emulate him in every aspect of our lives. True success lies in adopting his ways and practicing upon his Sunnah. The Quran and Hadith are replete with this.

Allah Ta’ala mentions in the Quraan Majeed:

لَّقَدۡ كَانَ لَكُمۡ فِي رَسُولِ ٱللَّهِ أُسۡوَةٌ حَسَنَة

Translation: There is certainly an excellent Model for you in the Messenger of Allah (Sura Al-Ahzab, Ayah 21)

قُلۡ اِنۡ كُنۡتُمۡ تُحِبُّوۡنَ اللّٰهَ فَاتَّبِعُوۡنِىۡ يُحۡبِبۡكُمُ اللّٰهُ وَيَغۡفِرۡ لَـكُمۡ ذُنُوۡبَكُمۡؕ وَاللّٰهُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِيۡمٌ‏

Translation(O Messenger!) Tell people: 'If you indeed love Allah, follow me (Sunnah of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), and Allah will love you and will forgive you your sins. Allah is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate. (Al Imran – 31)


Nabi (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:

فَمَنْ رَغِبَ عَنْ سُنَّتِي فَلَيْسَ مِنِّي

Translation: So, whoever is turns away from my Sunnah, is not from me (not one of my followers). (Musanif Abdur Razzaq)



As Muslims, our objective is to emulate Nabi (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) in every walk of life. Whether it be in our acts of worship e.g. Salaah and reciting certain Surahs at certain times, or in our general habits and dealings, e.g. wearing our right shoe first and conducting transactions with good conduct.

We should aim to mould both our outward character, such as being soft natured, as well as our internal character, such as humility and sincerity according to the Sunnah of Nabi (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

It is reported in a Hadith:

قَالَ قَالَ أَنَسُ بْنُ مَالِكٍ قَالَ لِي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏"‏ يَا بُنَىَّ إِنْ قَدَرْتَ أَنْ تُصْبِحَ وَتُمْسِيَ لَيْسَ فِي قَلْبِكَ غِشٌّ لأَحَدٍ فَافْعَلْ ‏"‏ ثُمَّ قَالَ لِي ‏"‏ يَا بُنَىَّ وَذَلِكَ مِنْ سُنَّتِي وَمَنْ أَحْيَا سُنَّتِي فَقَدْ أَحَبَّنِي ‏.‏ وَمَنْ أَحَبَّنِي كَانَ مَعِي فِي الْجَنَّةِ ‏"‏


Translation: Anas bin Malik Radiyallahu Anhu narrates that The Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said to me: 'O my son! If you are capable of (waking up in) the morning and (ending) the evening, while there are no ill feelings in your heart for anyone, then do so.' Then he said to me: 'O my son! That is from my Sunnah. Whoever revives my Sunnah, truly loves me. And whoever loves me, shall be with me in Paradise.’ (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2678)


Rectifying one’s inner self is not only Sunnah rather it is Fardh. For example, it is mentioned in the Hadith that if a person has pride, then he will not enter Jannah. This is a grave warning and requires immediate remedy.

عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ "‏ لاَ يَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ مَنْ كَانَ فِي قَلْبِهِ مِثْقَالُ ذَرَّةٍ مِنْ كِبْرٍ ‏"‏

Translation: Nabi (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: “He who has in his heart the weight of a mustard seed of pride shall not enter Paradise.” (Sahih Muslim 173)


Rectifying one’s inner self requires effort and guidance. One of the ways to achieve this to connect oneself with a spiritual guide and follow his advice. You may refer to the following website for further spiritual guidance: https://darulmahmood.net/


In order to inculcate Sunnah actions into one’s life, one should read books on the topic and gradually introduce Sunnah practises in one’s life. Overtime, one will have made a habit of practicing upon multiple Sunnahs.


You may also obtain a copy of the Qasidah Burdah of our Honarable Ustaad, Mufti Ebrahim Desei Saheb. You may access it via the following link: https://daruliftaa.net/qaseeda-burdah/

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the ability to follow the Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) in each and every aspect of our lives. Ameen.


And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Muhammad Fayyaadh

Student - Darul Iftaa

South Africa


Checked and Approved by,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

23-06-1441| 17-03-2020

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