How Do I Begin Islamic Studies in Fiqh?

Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch


How do I begin Islamic studies on fiqh and Prophetic narrations from al-Bukhari and Muslim?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Seeking Sacred knowledge is amongst the loftiest pursuits in one’s journey to draw nearer to Allah Most High. However, it must be done sincerely for Allah’s sake.

The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Whoever seeks knowledge to boast to the scholars, to refute the unlearned, or to draw the attention of people towards him – Allah will enter him into the Fire.” [Tirmidhi]

Righteous Intentions

For this reason, the most important advice for one seeking knowledge is a righteous intention.

If one’s intention is to become an Imam or a teacher, one would need to dig further and ask themselves why one wants to become an Imam or a teacher. If the answer is anything worldly, such as money or prestige, one must rectify this sinful intention.

If they intend to be able to benefit people and draw people closer to Allah because that will draw Divine pleasure and mercy towards him – then this is a righteous intention.

An Authorized Teacher

The second most important thing for one to have in their journey of seeking knowledge is a teacher who has an authentic chain of transmission (sanad) through his teachers back to the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace).

Knowledge is not taken from books, nor by self-study. Knowledge is passed down from heart to heart.

The teacher serves as a mentor as well as an instructor. What to study and when to study are difficult questions for one to answer on their own. Their teacher is the one who will guide them step by step from the primary texts to the larger texts.

What to Study First?

You mentioned a desire to study the Quran, Fiqh, and texts of Prophetic narrations like Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim.

To study these sciences in depth, especially the Quran and the Hadith, one must first acquire proficiency in the Arabic language. Attempting to self-study these very complicated texts without a teacher and proficiency in Arabic is dangerous and unadvisable.

This does not mean one cannot benefit from these texts unless they fully study Arabic. If one just wants a basic understanding, one can take classes in these sciences in their mother tongue. They can also read trustworthy and properly translated texts in Quranic exegesis, basic Fiqh, and Hadith commentary.

This method must also be supervised and will have limited results compared to learning said sciences in Arabic with a teacher.


Seeking out a teacher. Whether this be in the form of private classes or by way of joining a formal seminary (madrasa). The Internet is an option as long as one has a live class with an authorized teacher. In no way can this replace the additional benefits of an in-person class.

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Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch teaches Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he completed four years at the Darul Uloom Seminary in New York, where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences.

He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he studied for three years in Dar al-Mustafa under some of the most outstanding scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib.

In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Quran and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Quranic exegesis, Islamic history, and several texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.