Intention in Islam

Importance Of Intention In Islam (Niyyah)

Intention In Islam, Just like every action is judged upon intention, the term “Niyyah” referring to intention in Arabic, has special value in Islam. This is because the value of your deeds will be judged by ALLAH swt based upon what your intention was in the first place. Let’s take an in depth look at the true essence of niyyah in Islam.

Definition of Niyyah by scholars in Islam

Niyyah is referred to as in two variable contexts by scholars in Islam. The first is used to differentiate certain acts of worship from one another. A perfect example would be differentiating the prayers or Salah of Fajr from that of Maghrib. Another context Muslim scholar’s use for the term niyyah is to differentiate acts done for the sake of ALLAH swt from those done for the sake of others apart from ALLAH swt.

Intention in Islam

What is the significance of intention  in Islam (Niyyah) ?

Niyyah in Islam holds great importance for every Muslim believer. This is because the value of a person’s actions is based upon his intention, motive or objective. The phrase ‘Fi Sabillilah’ is mentioned repeatedly in the Holy Quran, which translates as ‘in the way of ALLAH.’ This is used to serve as a warning for Muslims to ensure that whatever they intend to do should be in the way of God and not for the sake of anyone else, including their personal desires. Deviations from the straight path should be avoided at any cost as they do not bring benefit in any shape or form. Any devotional act performed without the sincerest of intentions is worthless in the eyes of ALLAH swt. Niyyah is given the significance of a pillar of worship. This is due to the fact that any deed performed without intention or with an ungodly objective behind it shall not be accepted (batil). It is referred to in the Holy Quran that “Any believer who strives in the way of ALLAH, he will be guided by ALLAH on the right path.” Intention is like the prerequisite for the acceptance of deeds by ALLAH swt.

Various forms of sound intention (niyyah)

Pure intentions to seek closeness to God may take on various forms. Some are thought to hold greater value than others. The following are some of the common forms of intentions:

Fear for the Day of Judgement

The Day of Judgment is a sound intention of worship for believers. Muslims indulge in good deeds, while avoiding evil ones. This is because they fear for the day of resurrection, where all their worldly actions will be weighed. The fear of hell fire is enough for Muslims to act on the straight path, holding the purest of intentions.

Aims for reward

Another sound intention of worship is the hope of getting a great reward in the hereafter. The pleasure of paradise has been mentioned repeatedly in the verses of the Holy Quran as the final stay for those who act on the straight path, performing righteous deeds and hold firm belief in ALLAH swt. This point is very important in Intention In Islam.

Grateful for blessings

A wonderful and righteous intention in worship is showing gratitude to ALLAH swt for His countless blessings bestowed upon us all.

Love for God

Believers who hold the thoughts that their Lord is worthy of being worshipped and hence spend a devoted part of their time in the remembrance of their Lord will be rewarded in this world and definitely in the hereafter. On the Day of Judgment, all human beings will be raised based upon their intentions.

Having the purest of intentions is a belief all Muslims should hold. Only then can they expect to be rewarded by their Lord for any devotional acts being performed. After all, intention in all duties including worship is the criterion of value.


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