Qur’an and Sunnah

Why should the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) be taken along with the Qur’an?

Why can’t it be separated from the Qur’an? What is its primary function?

Sunnah is something which cannot be separated from the Qur’an. The Sunnah of what Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) had to say and what he did has to be taken along with the Qur’an. If we separate it from the Qur’an then we put ourselves in the position where we are unable to properly understand the Qur’an.

Hence, the Sunnah OR the main function of the Sunnah was to clarify for us the intended meanings of the Qur’an, to make, give us the details of the general instructions which Allah gave in the Qur’an.[1]

For Example: We know that Allah tells us in the Qur’an in many places, to make Salah,[2] to protect our Salah, to pray at the prescribed time.[3] But the Qur’an does not define how do we pray, when to raise our hands, what to say in the prayer, etc, which is not defined in the Qur’an. This comes from Sunnah. That is the case in most of the various principles of Islam. There are a few exceptions where Allah has given details, like in the case of Inheritance. Here he has given us a lot of detail, but in most of the various commandments of Islam, Allah has put them in general terms in the Qur’an and it has been left up to the Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) to give us the details.[4]

So, the primary function of the Sunnah was to clarify the intended meanings of the Qur’an and to give us practical demonstrations of how to implement the commandments of the Qur’an. What we will be looking here is not merely the legal commandments which have to do with when to pray, the commandments of when to give Zakat etc. what we will be looking at are the instructions or the guidance what the Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) gave us concerning the various principles. With everything there is a bare minimum, we could say like the five times daily prayers, this is the bare minimum. If one does not do this then one leaves Islam. But that does not at the same time eliminate going beyond that, there is no maximum in terms of how much we may pray. We have a minimum but they are many degrees that we can travel on with regards to prayer, the higher we go in degrees with regards to prayer, the closer we come to Allah. And there are certain times of prayer outside of the compulsory prayers, the recommended times of prayers, which are better than other times. So, what we have in this next series of hadith that we are looking are the various advices that the Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) gave us concerning the best of the various levels of various deeds which we have been commanded to do.


[1] J.M Zarabozo, The Authority and Importance of the Sunnah, 103

[2] For Example, Almighty Allah says: “And perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat), and give Zakat, and Irka' (i.e. bow down or submit yourselves with obedience to Allah) along with Ar-Raki'un.” [Surah al-Baqarah, 2:43]

[3] Allah Said: “... Verily, the prayer is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours.” [Surah an-Nisa’, 4:103]

[4] Dr. M As-Siba’ee, The Sunnah and its Role in Islamic Legislation, 445-480

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