Is Acting Differently with Different People Hypocrisy That Leads to Disbelief (Kufr)?

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


If someone acts a certain way in front of others and a different way in front of others and lies, is this type of hypocrisy something that makes you non-Muslim, or is it disbelief (kufr)?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.

I pray you are in good faith and health.

If a person has a fear – or even a doubt – that he seems different in his approach and interaction with others, this fear is a sign of faith (iman). However, if a person is truly two-faced with others like he lies to one, speaks the truth to others, etc., then this is a sign of hypocrisy, a major sin, and not an act of disbelief that makes one a disbeliever.

The Worst People Are Hypocrites with Two Faces

Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Verily, among the worst of people is one with two faces, coming with one face to these and another to those.” [Bukhari; Muslim]

If one thinks one has been acting two-faced with others, one should condition and weigh one’s word and interaction the next time, repent and seek forgiveness from the past, not delve into the past or any matter and move on.

Treatment from Fear of Hypocrisy

Doubts and thoughts of disbelief are from the devil (shaytan).  Take the means to ward him off, as taught by our Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him); these include the following:

  • Seek refuge in Allah Most High by saying, أَعُوذُ بِاللَّـهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ (A’udhu bi Llahi min ash-shaytani r-rajim) [Bukhari; Muslim]; and recite Ayat al-Kursi, as well as the last three surahs (Ikhlas, Falaq, Nas). [Tabarani, al-Mu‘jam al-Kabir]
  • Find good company– by attending the local masjid for prayers and attending programs of knowledge and remembrance. Being with people who make much remembrance of Allah and who remind you to do the like, such as those described by the Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) as follows: “Verily among people are keys to Allah’s remembrance – when they are seen, Allah is remembered.” [Tabarani, al-Mu‘jam al-Kabir]
  • Turn to Allah in need and seek His help in this situation. Perform the Prayer of Need (haja) regularly.  See the link below.


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I pray this helps with your question.
[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete the hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled in an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and ‘Aalimiyya sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan. He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for several years. He has taught hifz of the Quran, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to children and adults onsite and online extensively in the UK and Ireland. He taught at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences. He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His interest is a love of books and gardening.