by Muhammad Hamzah
for Al-Markaz for Khudi Enlightening Studies
To study Islam, one must learn Arabic first since it is the language of Islamic teachings’ sources, Al-Quran and Hadith. While studying Arabic, he or she can learn the sciences of Al-Quran (ulum al-quran) and the sciences of Hadith (ulum al-hadith) and then the history of Muslim.
In short, Quranic sciences or Quranic studies comprise the proper recitation/pronunciation (ilm tajwid), the collection and compilation of Al-Quran, its Makkan and Madeenan verses, and its exegesis (tafseer). The sciences of Hadith consist of the text of hadith (matn), chain of narration (isnad) and the authenticity of hadith. These are the sciences or studies that one needs to know pertaining the sources of Islamic teachings.
The content of Islamic teachings taken from the sources mentioned above can be divided into three main categories: iman, islam, and ihsan. The first division covers the system of faith (aqeeda), the second covers the islamic law (sharia), and the third covers morality or manners (akhlaq).
Studying those sciences or even better, mastering it, can take years.
The writer is sometimes amazed seeing an entertainer is suddenly being called or labeled ustadh or ustadha and teaching people about Islam without knowing those studies.