1. The first condition is knowledge or al-ilm
One must have the necessary basic understanding of what is meant by the shahaadah. One must understand what the shahaadah is affirming and what the shahaadah is denying. Allah says in the Quran,
2. The second condition is certainty or al-yaqeen
This is the opposite of doubt and uncertainty. In Islam, in fact, any kind of doubt concerning anything confirmed in the Quran or the sunnah is equivalent to kufr or disbelief. One must, in his heart, be absolutely certain of the truth of the shahaadah. One’s heart must not be wavering in any way when one testifies to the truth of, “There is none worthy of worship except Allah.” Allah describes the true believers as those who have belief in Allah and then their hearts waver not. Allah says,
3. The third condition is acceptance or al-qabool
If a person has the knowledge of and certainty in the shahaadah, this must be followed by acceptance, with the tongue and heart, of whatever that shahaadah implies. Whoever refuses to accept the shahaadah and its implications, even if he knows that it is true and is certain about its truth, is a disbeliever. This refusal to accept is sometimes due to pride, envy or other reasons. In any case, the shahaadah is not a true shahaadah without its unconditional acceptance. Allah says,
Allah also says in Quran,
4.The fourth condition is submission and compliance or al-inqiyad
This implies the actual physical enactment by deeds of one’s shahaadah. This is one of the main meaning s of the word Islam itself, “the submission to the will and commands of Allah.” Allah commands this in Quran,
Allah has praised those who sbubmit to His command by their actions. Allah says,
Allah has made it a condition of faith that one submits to the command of Allah and His messenger. Allah says,
This does not mean that the true believer never falls into sin. Indeed, true believers do commit sins. But as long as they recognize that what they did is not correct and it is inconsistent with their obligation of submitting to Allah, then they have not violated the soundness of their testimony or shahaadah.
5. The fifth condition is truthfulness or al-sidq
It is opposed to hypocrisy and dishonesty. This means that when one says the shahaadah, he is saying it honestly, actually meaning it. He is not lying when it comes to his testimony of faith or simply trying to deceive or fool anyone. The Prophet (pbuh) said,
Most people have heard of those who say the testimony of faith yet they are not saying it honestly. They do not believe in it. They are simply saying it in order to protect themselves or to get some gain from doing so. These are the hypocrites. Allah has described them in the opening of the Quran with the following words,
The shahaadah of those who become Muslims only to benefit from being Muslim and not because they believe in Islam will be rejected by Allah in the Hereafter. They will face a painful punishment due to their lying.
6. The sixth condition is a pure sincerity or al-ikhlaas
When one declares the shahaadah, one must do that solely for the sake of Allah. One must not do it for any other reason or anyone else’s sake. In this manner, the meaning of purity is the opposite of shirk or ascribing partners with Allah. One becomes and remains Muslim solely to serve Allah, to avoid His anger and punishment and to gain His mercy and reward. Allah says in the Quran,
Allah also says in the Quran,
The Prophet (pbuh) also said,
This is something that all Muslims should think about, but especially those who grew up in Muslim families and were born Muslim. Everyone should be clear to himself that he is Muslim only for the sake of Allah. A Muslim cannot be a Muslim for the sake of his parents, friends, family, community or worldly goal. It must be clear in the mind that one is a Muslim for the sake of Allah first, last and only.
7. The seventh condition is love or al-mahabbah
That is, the believer loves this shahaadah, he loves in accordance with the shahaadah, he loves the implications and requirements of the shahaadah and he loves those who act and strive based on this shahaadah. This is a necessary condition of the shahaadah. If a person makes the shahaadah but does not love the shahaadah and what it stands for, then, in fact, his faith is not complete. It is not the faith of a true believer. If he has no love for this shahaadah or if he actually feels hatred for it, he has negated his shahaadah. The true believer puts no one as an equal to Allah in his love. Allah says in the Quran,
Elsewhere Allah says,
The Prophet (pbuh) said,
8. An eighth condition is that you must deny every other object of worship
Although that is clear in the words of the testimony of faith, it does not seem clear to everyone who makes that testimony. Therefore, it needs to be mentioned explicitly. In surah al-Baqara, Allah reminds Muslims of this important aspect of the shahaadah. The shahaadah is not merely an affirmation but it is both an affirmation and a negation. Allah states,
The Prophet (pbuh) emphasized this point when said,
Although this condition should be obvious to everyone who says the words of the shahaadah, one can still find Muslims who say the shahaadah and then make acts of worship for beings or things other than Allah. One can find them going to the graveyards and worshiping those in the graves. They will perform acts of worship, not for the sake of Allah, but for the sake of the dead “saints” (auliya) in the grave.
9. The ninth condition is that the Muslim adheres to the shahaadah until he dies
This is a must if the shahaadah is to mean anything in the Hereafter. One cannot rest on his laurels of what he may have done in the past. No, indeed, the shahaadah must be his banner until his death. Allah says in the Quran,
The second part of shahaada: Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah
When one testifies that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, he is stating his belief that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was chosen by Allah to be His Messenger and to convey His Message. Allah says in the Quran,
Allah creates and has power to do all things. Allah specifically chose the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to be His Messenger. In another verse, Allah says,
If anyone claims that the Prophet (peace be upon him) did not actually convey the entire message or that he distorted it in any way, he is actually saying that Allah did not know who was the correct or best person to be a messenger. This is obvious disbelief.
Second, when one makes the shahaadah, he is also testifying that the Prophet (peace be upon him) has been sent for all of mankind until the Day of Judgment. Allah says in the Quran,
Furthermore, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
It is obligatory upon everyone from the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) until the Day of Judgment to believe in and follow the Prophet (peace be upon him). If the message of Islam clearly reaches a person and he still refuses to believe in and follow the Prophet (peace be upon him), he is a disbeliever and will be in the Hell-fire forever- unless he repents and embraces Islam.
However, this also implies that the Prophet’s teachings and his Sunnah are valid and obligatory upon all of mankind until the Day of Judgment. That is, his example and teaching was not simply for the people of Arabia at his time. Instead, it is just as valid and just as important for each and every Muslim today, whether he be in New York or Malaysia. Some people seem to try to resist the idea that they have to follow the Prophet (peace be upon him). When they do so, they must realize that they are going against what they have testified to. They have testified that the Prophet’s message, which includes both the Quran and his inspired Sunnah, is for all of mankind- including each and every one alive today.
The Prophet (pbuh) has said,
In this hadith, the Prophet (peace be upon him) explained that he is the most fearful of Allah and God-conscious. Therefore, there is no excuse for anyone not to follow his example and guidance. But he also stated that the one who turns away from his practice and example is not from him. One cannot truthfully claim to believe in and accept the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and, at the same time, refuse to accept his life as the example that one must strive to emulate.