How to Become a Muslim after Not Praying?

Answered by Ustadh Sufyan Qufi


I was once not religious and had never prayed. I started praying on a regular basis, but I did not say the shahada beforehand. After that, I recited the shahada and repented. Was it enough to become a Muslim?


In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.

I pray this finds you in the best of states.

Your testimony of faith (shahada) is valid. Not praying the five daily prayers has not made you a disbeliever.

Sayings of the Messenger of Allah (Peace and blessings upon him) indicating that the person not praying is a disbeliever mean in reality that falling into disbelief in the future is feared for someone not praying.

But as long as you remain firm in your belief in Allah, Most High, and His Messenger (Peace and blessings upon him) you can be assured that you are a believer despite the grave sin of not praying.

Alhamdulillah your question has been answered previously at SeekersGuidance by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch (may Allah protect him):

Your prayers are valid. If you were born to Muslim parents, then you are considered Muslim. Therefore, it is not a condition of the validity of the prayer that you declare the testification of faith (shahada). [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

Either way, when praying you would have said the shahada as it is a part of the tashahhud supplication during the sitting.

What Should I Do Now?

Continue to be steadfast in performing your prayers. At the same time, you should seek to increase your understanding of Islamic beliefs and the rulings of Islamic worship.

Please see:
Are Prayers Valid Without the Shahada?
Am I A Disbeliever for Not Praying?

And Allah knows best.
[Ustadh] Sufyan Qufi
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Sufyan Qufi is an advanced seeker of knowledge, originally from Algeria, who grew up in France. He began searching far and wide for answers to the fundamental questions of life and was disappointed at the answers he found. Then he connected with various traditional teachers and gradually connected with SeekersGuidance. He embarked on his journey of learning through the various teachers at SeekersGuidance, including his mentor Shaykh Faraz Rabbani. He studied numerous texts in Islamic Law, Theology, Hadith, and other areas with Shaykh Faraz Rabbani and other teachers, including Shaykh Abdurrahman al-Sha‘ar, Shaykh Ali Hani, and others. He is an active instructor at SeekersGuidance and answers questions through the SeekersGuidance Answers Service.