Certainty is not Dispelled by Doubt

اليقين لا يزول بالشك

Certainty is not Dispelled by Doubt

The above statement is one of the qawaa-id al-fiqhiyyah – the principles or maxims of fiqh. These are brief statements which convey a particular fiqh ruling, and which have their basis in the Qur’an and Sunnah.

This is just one of them and the reason I’ve chosen to write about this specific one is because I have found it to come in handy and be particularly useful. So what does it actually mean and how would one apply it? Let’s look an example in order to understand it properly.

Say you take wudu in the morning and then leave your house. Some time later you hear the adhan and so go to perform salah. As you’re heading towards the masjid, you now wonder whether you still have wudu, or whether you have to perform it again. So here this qaa-idah could be applied.

In this scenario what is the certainty? It is that you had wudu when you left your home. And what is the doubt? It is that your wudu broke somewhere along the line. So in this case the certainty would remain and not be dispelled by the doubt i.e. you would still have wudu and so could perform salah. This doesn’t mean that you cannot perform wudu again, should you want to, it’s just that it’s not a requirement for you to do so.

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2 Responses to Certainty is not Dispelled by Doubt

  1. RTA says:

    Seriously helpful.

    In the past doubt always trumped certainty for me because I’ve always want to make sure I got everything right. It’s hard to be at the stage where you have wudu but think you might have broken it unknowingly but I’ll be sure to take this into consideration next time inshaAllah.

    JazakAllahu khair

  2. hayatto says:

    Jazakh’Allah Khair

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