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Most Common Bid’ah in Islam You Must Know

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Bid’ah is an Arabic word means of innovation it refers to innovation both in worldly or religious matter. In term of religious matter, a bid’ah without any precedence is forbidden.


Because Islam is a perfect religion that created by Allah SWT and is intended to be the grace of all nature. This is mentioned in the following verse,

“….This day those who disbelieve have despaired of (defeating) your religion, so fear them not, but fear Me. This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion….” (QS. Al-Ma’idah : 3)

Therefore any innovation without precedence in religious matter will equal to disbelief with the word of Allah SWT. Rasulullah SAW also said to Bilal bin Al-Harith in the following hadith,

“That indeed whoever revives a Sunnah from my Sunnah which has died after me, then for him is a reward similar to whoever acts upon it without diminishing anything from their rewards. And whoever introduces an erroneous innovation which Allah is not pleased with, nor His Messenger, then he shall receive  sins similar to whoever acts upon it, without that diminishing anything from the sins of the people.” (At-Tirmidhi)

Read also about Effects of Innovation in Islam

Most Common Bid’ah in Islam

Here are most common bid’ah in Islam which still exist until now. But we should know even it is stated that all bid’ah leads to astray and misguidance but some bid’ah is allowed.

Allowed bid’ah is a new thing that give a benefits to ummah and do not against both written in Qur’an and Hadith.

Narrated by Aisha, Allah’s Messenger SAW said,

“If somebody innovates something which is not in harmony with the principles of our religion, that thing is rejected.” (Bukhari)

It means that there is bid’ah which againts the religion of Islam, and there is bid’ah that does not againts the religion of Islam. Read also about Basic Importance of Iman in Islam.

1. Touching graves and looking for help from the occupants

Nowadays, we saw this activities often done by so many people. They went into some people grave and believe that they are the noble person which have an abilities to grant protection and help.

Of course it is a form of bad bid’ah and must be avoided by muslim. Because this kind of act will only leads muslims into misguidance and shirk.

2. Celebrating mawlid or the birthday of the Prophet SAW

There so many contradiction about this. But Rasulullah SAW said in the hadith below,

“Do not exaggerate about me as the Christians exaggerated about the son of Maryam. I am only a slave, so say, ‘The slave of Allah and His Messenger.” (Al-Bukhari)

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It means that there is no certain evidence from Qur’an and Hadith or even the companions ever celebrate the birthday of The Prophet SAW.

So in Islam it is included as bid’ah. Read also about Law of Celebrate Birthday in Islam.

If celebrating mawlid is importance then why the companions did not do that? since they must love Rasulullah and now enough whether it is important or not. The Prophet SAW said in the hadith below,

“The best mankind are my generation (or my century), then those who come after them, then those who come after them. Then there will come a people who will not care if their testimony comes before their oath or vice versa (i.e they will not take such matter seriously).” (Al-Bukhari, Muslims, At-Tirmidhi)

The celebration of mawlid occured many centures later after many features of true religion had vanished and bid’ah had become widespread. If muslim truly loves Rasulullah isn’t any better thing than following His guidance and sunnah?

3. Uttering of intention before prayer

Speaking the intention of prayer (salah) out loud and repeating it, is also form of most common bid’ah in Islam. Some people uttering the niyyah (intention) before salah out loud that other person can hear it. In islam we believe that intention came from the knowledge.

If we want to do something we truly know the purpose and the benefits are that obviously we have made an intention before.

Just imagine as simple as this, you want to cook to obtain food that if you want to do that you must have an intention at first isn’t it? or to gain knowledge you have to study, so you must have an intention first to begin studying, right?

4. Offering dua after prayer in unison

Offering dua is recommended at anytime especially after performing prayer. But what about the habit of offering dua after prayer in unison by group of people? there is no certain evidence of the Prophet or the Companions doing this habit.

So it is also form of bid’ah in Islam. It may be have nothing wrong about it, but it is clearly an innovation in the matter of deen (religion). Read also about Strict Prohibiton of Speculation in Islam Riba Ghahar.

5. Believing that saints or people who have high level of faith no longer need to follow the guidelines of the sharia

Nowadays we see this happen. When a person think he has a great level of faith to Allah SWT and has a deep understanding about the essence of Islam thus he neglected all the Sharia of Islam.

He  was no longer perform the Sharia such prayer, fasting, or other form of worship. In the worst case is some people claim he was the next Prophet. Indeed, it clearly the worst bid’ah among all. And whoever  believe in those people will already misguided from the path of Islam.

6. Putting a thomb or board on grave 

We see it nowadays that people put a tomb or board in the grave which written by the name of the deceased. In Islam there is no such a thing like that.

It is an innovation create by human. And rather it was a custom or culture from a long time ago. As long as it does not associate with shirk then it is permissible.

What are most scholars feared are when the deceased are a noble and righteous one, and people became idolize him it may lead some people to glorify the man’s grave.

And we have seen it happened now. Read also about Highly Benefits of Visiting the Grave in Islam.

Another most common bid’ah in Islam that may you don’t know are as follows:

  • Plating trees on the grave
  • Kissing the thumb whenever the Prophet’s name is mentioned and touch their eyes with it.
  • Passing rewards to the deceased like inviting other people and provide people. And if the family did not do that they believe the deceased soul will be wandering around in hunger and thirst.
  • Celebrating completing reading Quran by read Surah Faatihah, Baqarah, the four Quls and making dua in unison and so forth.
  • Taking the deceased as intercessor while asking for dua to Allah SWT.
  • Using beads for Dhikr
  • Reciting Qur’an while visiting grave

There are many common bid’ah in our community, it is our decision to accepted or not. But what we have to take care is our believe to Islam, Allah SWT, and His Messenger. If it only lead us into astray, misguidance, and harm us then we should leave it immediately.

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