“The Creed of Imam al-Tahawi” – Translated, Introduced and Annotated by Hamza Yusuf
Yesterday I finished reading Sheikh Hamza Yusuf’s rendition of the codification of Islamic creed by the renowned and well respected medieval Egyptian scholar Imam al-Tahawi.
The Creed of Imam Tahawi is a very short list of essentially what Sunni Muslims believe. It’s taught all over the Islamic world and also in many secular institutions. Sheikh Hamza has applied his eloquence of both the Arabic and English languages into making a great rendition, with included notes for guidance, that is accessible for a wide range of people. This is great for people looking to convert to Islam to obtain an understanding of what being Muslim actually means.
It’s also great for current Muslims who want to know what are the differences between orthodox Islam and other sects that have sprung up over the years with regards to their doctrines and beliefs. Sheikh Hamza also takes on the issue of why something like The Creed of Imam al-Tahawi was needed, why did Sunni Muslims need to codify their beliefs and engage in philosophical and theological discourse (Which is something the early generations of Muslims never did)? and why did Orthodox Muslims have to start calling themselves “Sunni”, or to give it its full name, members of Ahl Sunnah wa’al Jama’a? This is something a lot of Muslims who are looking to go deeper into their faith have a problem with. Why do we need to give ourselves a label? The Hadith regarding 70+ sects is widely known and accepted, so why can’t we just call ourselves Muslim? Sheikh Hamza answers these questions and has done a great service for the English speaking Muslim community. May Allah reward him and grant him and his family Janna’at al-Firdous. Ameen.