What Islamic Books to Study and in What Order

Before you is a huge list of Islamic books; what to study and in what order. They are all recommended by Scholars (may Allah have mercy on them all).


 What Books to Study and in What Order by Shaykh Muḥammad Amān ibn Alī al-Jāmī:

  1. The Three Principles’
  2. The Pillars of the Prayer and its Obligations and Conditions’ 
  3. The Four Principles’
  4. The Conditions of La ilāha illā Allāh’
  5. The Nullifiers of la ilāha illā Allāh’
  6. Removal of The Doubts’
  7. The Book of Tawḥīd, which is the right of Allāh upon His servantsʿ (Kitāb al-Tawḥīd)
  8. al-Wāsaṭīyyāh
  9. Majmūʿ al-Fatāwā of Ibn Taymīyāh’.
  10. The Explanation of al-Tahāwīyāh
  11. Tafsīr ʿĀbd al-Raḥmān al-Siʿdī
  12. Fāt’ḥ al-Qadīr
  13. Tafsīr Ibn Kathīr
  14. Forty Hadīth al-Nawawī
  15. Umdat al-Aḥkām
  16. Bulūgh al-Marām

The first essay that I advise the one who wishes to begin seeking knowledge to memorise is ‘The Three Principles’, [after that] ‘The Pillars of the Prayer and its Obligations and Conditions’ followed by ‘The Four Principles’, whilst using a edition that has all three in one. It is desirable to memorise ‘The Conditions of La ilāha illā Allāh’ and ‘The Nullifiers of la ilāha illā Allāh’. It is essential that he memorises these essays well, and after doing so, reads them to a student of knowledge, so as to take from the mouths of men and not from the belly of books [i.e. sits with scholars to ensure correct understanding as opposed to relying on one’s own readings].

Thereafter, if it is easy for him to memorise ‘Removal of The Doubts’ then that is good. However, the book that is most important for a student of knowledge to memorise and study in the subject of ʿaqīdah – specifically with regards to tawḥīd of worship and rulership – in an original manner, is ‘The Book of Tawḥīd, which is the right of Allāh upon His servantsʿ (Kitāb al-Tawḥīd). This is a great book. It is [a collection] of selected segments from verses in the Book of Allāh, Prophetic ḥadīth, and narrations of the people of knowledge. It is a book, which by, Allāh has facilitated a great deal of good. We advise our youth to give importance to this book, [by] memorising, and understanding [it well] and by reading it’s explanations in order to be firm in this subject, the subject of ʿaqīdah.

In the subject of tawḥīd of the Names and Attributes – for the student who has great desires for knowledge, he should memorise the text of ‘al-Wāsaṭīyyāh’ or study it so that he understands it. [He should move onto] the books that have been gathered under the title, ‘Majmūʿ al-Fatāwā of Ibn Taymīyāh’. Within this collection are very important treatises that are absolutely necessary for a student of knowledge to study. If the student wishes to further his study on the subject of Names and Attributes, he should study ‘The Explanation of al-Tahāwīyāh’ since the author of the explanation of at-Tahāwīyāh transmits the majority or bulk of his books from the books of Shaykh al-Islam ibn Taymīyyah, his student Ibn al-Qayyim and Ibn Kathīr. It is a comprehensive and beneficial book.

As for tafsīr, then is it essential that a beginning student of knowledge stars  with ‘Tafsīr ʿĀbd al-Raḥmān al-Siʿdī’ since it is concise, and his manḥāj was well known – his manḥāj was Salafī. If the student is well acquainted and grounded in the branches of the Arabic Language, and finds a teachers or a Salafī exegete, then he should study ‘Fāt’ḥ al-Qadīr’ by al-Shawkānī. I have made these cautions and set these conditions because Imām al-Shawkānī – even with his great level  of knowledge and good authorships, especially in Fat’ḥ al-Qadīrand Nayl al-Āwtār he was not innocent from interpreting some texts in terms of the Attributes [of Allāh]. In case he is deceived by this, it is essential that he chooses a Salafī exegete to study this book. Thereafter the tafsīr that is well known to us  is ‘Tafsīr Ibn Kathīr’ there is no problem in studying the summarisation that has been summarised from this tafsīr or even diving into other parts. Nevertheless, saying all that I’ve said, it is not befitting that a student of knowledge suffices with reading, but he must turn to the people of knowledge. Lastly, before we finish [speaking about] tafsīr, it is also necessary to study the sciences of tafsīr. From the sciences of tafsīr are the technique of recitation, and the subjects of the Arabic Language. All of this is from the sciences of tafsīr.

Then he should study ḥadīth. He should memorise texts – as we mentioned last night, he should begin with ‘Forty Hadīth al-Nawawī’ and ‘Umdat al-Aḥkām’ and ‘Bulūgh al-Marām’. He should study the conditions and become aware of these books. He should study them with the people who are specilists [in this subject].

[As for] fiqh, then if the student of knowledge wishes to expand and become acquainted with the differences amongst the scholars of fiqh, then he should memorise texts from all four schools of thought. He should not accustom himself in sticking to just one specific school, since the correct fiqh is that which is studied in Umdat al-Aḥkām and Bulūgh al-Marām [that is] the fiqh of the sunnah and some of the books of imām al-Shawkānī – provided, as I’ve said, there is no bigotry to anyone.

Arabic Source:
English source (TRANSLATOR: Ṣalaḥ al-Irānī): 

Books Recommended by Shaykh Muqbil for the Beginner (Student of Knowledge):

Question:Which books should a student of knowledge begin with? And then after those, if he wants to widen his study?


The books, which a student of knowledge, who is a beginner, should start reading with [if he can read and write well] are:

  1. Fath ul-Majeed Sharh Kitaab ut-Tawheed , which is a mighty book,
  2. Aqeedat ul-Waasitiyyah by Shaykh ul-Islaam ibn Taymiyyah, 
  3. al-Qawl ul-Mufeed Fee Adillatit Tawheed by our brother Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhaab al-Wasaabee, 
  4. Bulugh al-Maraam
  5. Riyaadh us-Saaliheen

When you have read these books, you yourself will crave for more. If you could, start with the memorization of the Qur’aan, and this more good and desirable.

As for the issue, regarding the ‘Arabic language, for our foreign brothers, then it is very important. If there is a foreign person who does not speak the ‘Arabic language well, then a person may come to him in his Islaamic appearance and then he begins to explain the Qur’aan to him other than how it ought to be, as happened with the Mu’tazilah.

Taken From Tuhfatul Mujeeb ‘Alaa Asilatil-Hadhir wal-Ghareeb, p.156, Dar al-Aathar.

Shaykh Muqbil ibn Haadi al-Waad’iee

Translated By: ‘Amr Basheer

Source: https://abdurrahman.org/2014/01/15/booksmuqbil/

Books Recommended by Shaik Ibn Uthaimeen:

Question:We would like some advice about the books which the seeker of Islamic knowledge should obtain, study and refer to


Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah)

Praise be to Allaah.

  1. ‘Aqeedah (basic tenets of faith):
    • Shaykh al-Islam Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abd al-Wahhaab (may Allaah have mercy on him).
      • Thalaathat al-Usool – The Three Fundamental Bases of Islamic Theology (pdf)
      • Al-Qawaa’id al-Arba’ah – Four Principles of Tawheed (pdf)
      • Kashf al-Shubahaat – Removal of Doubts ( pdf )
      • Al-Tawheed
    • Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah.
      • Al-‘Aqeedah al-Waasitiyyah (Principles of Islamic Faith ) which deals with Tawheed al-Asmaa’ wa’l-Sifaat
        • This is one of the best books written on this topic, and it is worth reading and studying.
      • Al-Hamawiyyah
      • Al-Tadmuriyyah – These two books are more comprehensive than al-Waasitiyyah
    • Al-Tahhaawiyyah
      • Al-‘Aqeedah al-Tahhaawiyyah, by Shaykh Abu Ja’far Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Tahhaawi
      • Sharh al-‘Aqeedah al-Tahhaawiyyah by Abu’l-Hasan ‘Ali ibn Abi’l-‘Izz
    • Al-Durar al-Saniyyah fi’l-Ajoobah al-Najdiyyah, compiled by Shaykh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Qaasim
    • Al-Durrah al-Madiyyah fi ‘Aqeedah al-Firqah al-Mardiyyah by Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Safaareeni al-Hanbali. –
      • This book contains some general statements which go against the madhhab of the salaf, such as his saying, “Our Lord is not an essence or an attribute or a physical entity, exalted be He.” Therefore the seeker of knowledge has to study it with a shaykh who is well versed in the ‘aqeedah of the salaf, so that he can explain the general statements in it that go against the ‘aqeedah of the righteous salaf.
  2. Hadeeth
    • Fath al-Baari Sharh Saheeh al-Bukhaari, by Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqallaani
    • Subul al-Salaam Sharh Buloogh al-Maraam, by al-San’aani,
      • his book combines between hadeeth and fiqh.
    • Nayl al-Awtaar Sharh Muntaqaa al-Akhbaar by al-Shawkaani
    • ‘Umdat al-Ahkaam by al-Maqdisi.
      • This is an abridged book; most of its ahaadeeth are narrated in al-Saheehayn so their authenticity does not need to be researched.
    • Al-Arba’een al-Nawawiyyah, by Abu Zakariyya al-Nawawi.
      • This is a good book because it includes etiquette and a good methodology, and important basic principles, such as the hadeeth, “Part of a person’s being a good Muslim is his leaving alone that which does not concern him.” (Narrated by Imaam Ahmad, 1 – 201; al-Tirmidhi, 2318; classed as hasan by al-Nawawi in Riyaadh al-Saaliheen, 73; classed as saheeh by Ahmad Shaakir in al-Musnad, 1737). This principle – if one made it the path upon which one walks – would be sufficient.
      • Another principle is given concerning when one should speak, “Whoever believes in Allaah and the Last Day, let him say something good or else
        remain silent.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, Kitaab al-Adab; Muslim, Kitaab al-Luqtah, Baab al-Diyaafah).
    • Buloogh al-Maraam, by al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqallaani.
      • This is a very useful book, especially because it mentions the narrators, and quoted the opinions of others scholars, who said whose hadeeth is saheeh and whose is da’eef, and he comments on the hadeeth to say whether they are saheeh or da’eef.
    • Nukhbat al-Fikr by al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqallaani.
      • This is considered to be a comprehensive work. If the seeker of knowledge understands it completely then he will have no need of many other books of mustalah (the science of hadeeth). Ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy on him) has a useful way of writing, which involves examining every issue in depth and categorizing the topics he discusses. If the seeker of knowledge reads it he will find it stimulating, because it is based on making one think. I say: it is good for the seeker of knowledge to memorize it because it is a useful summary of the science of mustalah (science of hadeeth).
    • The Six Books (Saheeh al-Bukhaari, Sahih Muslim, al-Nasaa’i, Abu Dawood, Ibn Maajah and Tirmidhi).
      • I advise the seeker of knowledge to read them often, because that will serve two purposes: reviewing the main sources of Islam and reviewing the names of hadeeth narrators. If you often review the names of hadeeth narrators, then whenever you come across the name of one of the narrators of al-Bukhaari in any isnaad, you will know that this is one of the narrators of al-Bukhaari, so you will benefit from this knowledge of hadeeth.
  3. Books of fiqh
    • Aadaab al-mashiy ila’l-Salaah by Shaykh al-Islam Muhammad ibn ‘Abd al-Wahhaab
    • Zaad al-Mustaqni’ fi Ikhtisaar al-Muqni’ by al-Hajjaawi.
      • This is one of the best texts of fiqh. It is a blessed book, brief and comprehensive. Our shaykh, ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy on him) told us to memorize it, even though he had memorized the text of Daleel al-Taalib.
    • Al-Rawd al-Murbi’ Sharh Zaad al-Mustaqni’ by Shaykh Mansoor al-Bahooti
    • ‘Umdat al-Fiqh by Ibn Qudaamah
    • Al-Usool min ‘Ilm al-Usool.
      • This is an abridged book which serves as an introduction for the seeker of knowledge.
  4. Faraa’id (laws of inheritance)
    • Matn al-Rahbiyyah by al-Rahbi
    • Matn al-Burhaaniyyah by Muhammad al-Burhaani.
    • This is a useful and comprehensive abridged book dealing with all the laws of inheritance. I think that al-Burhaaniyyah is more comprehensive than al-Rahbiyyah in some ways, and it gives more information.
  5. Tafseer
    • Tafseer al-Qur’aan al-‘Azeem by Ibn Katheer
      • This book is good for tafseer based on reports and it is useful and trustworthy. But it does pay much attention to matters of grammar and style.
    • Tayseer al-Kareem al-Rahmaan fi Tafseer Kalaam al-Mannaan by Shaykh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Sa’di
      • This is a good, easy and trustworthy book, and I recommend it.
    • Muqaddimah Shaykh al-Islam fi’l-Tafseer.
      • This is an important introduction.
    • Adwaa’ al-Bayaan by al-‘Allaamah Muhammad al-Shanqeeti
      • This is a comprehensive book covering hadeeth, fiqh, tafseer and usool al-fiqh.
  6. General books on some subjects:
    • On (Arabic) grammar: –
      • Matn al-Ajroomiyyah. This is an abridged book.
      • Alfiyyah Ibn Maalik; this is a summary of the science of grammar.
    • On Seerah (Prophet’s biography)
      • Zaad al-Ma’aad by Ibn al-Qayyim –
        • The best book that I have seen. This is a very useful book in which he mentions the biography of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) from all angels, then he discusses many rulings.
      • Rawdat al-‘Uqalaa’ by Ibn Hibbaan al-Busti
        • This is a useful book despite its brevity. He compiled a large amount of useful material and stories of the scholars, muhadditheen and others.
      • Siyar A’laam al-Nubalaa’ by al-Dhahabi.
        • This book is very useful and the seeker of knowledge should read and refer to it.

From Fataawa al-Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (rahimallah), Kitaab al-‘Ilm, p. 92

Source: https://abdurrahman.org/2014/01/15/uthaimeenrecommendedbooks/

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