Conditions of the Shahada
There are some conditions to validly pronounce the Shahada. So it is an important part of the Shahada. Some think there are seven, others think there are nine.
In this article you will get to see all the conditions of the Shahada. In this way you know what makes the testimony of faith valid.
1. Knowledge ('Ilm)
It is not enough to pronounce the testimony of faith. One should know what this statement means. Sometimes disbelievers pronounce this testimony without knowing its meaning. If this was not a condition, they would convert to Islam without knowing it. And that is of course not the case.
One should know the deep meaning of La ilaha illa Allah before they want to convert. Consciousness is therefore an important part to be able to convert.
2. Belief (Yaqeen)
Another condition of the Shahada is that one must be convinced. So it is not possible to enter Islam if you are unsure whether this is the truth.
Conversion to Islam requires complete conviction. This is a condition to then be able to pronounce the Shahada validly.
One should be sure that Islam is the truth. That means rejecting all other religions, being convinced that Allah is the Only God and that He alone has the right to be worshiped.
One should also be sure that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. There can be no doubt about this.
3. Acceptance (Qabul)
In order to validly pronounce the Shahada, it is important to accept its contents. This means that one accepts the Oneness of Allah and that Muhammad is His last messenger.
It is not possible to convert to Islam if you reject the testimony. Of course, you should first know what the meaning of La ilaha illa Allah is. In addition, you must accept that Muhammad is the last messenger of Allah, sent for all mankind.
4. Submission (Al-Inqiyaad)
The fourth condition of the Shahada is to submit to it. That means applying the meaning of Laa ilaha illa Allah in your daily life. You avoid Shirk (idolatry), reject false gods (Kufr bi Taghut) and worship Allah alone (Tawheed).
The Muslim is ordered to confirm the Shahada in his or her life. It is therefore not possible to remain a Muslim when major shirk or major Kufr is committed.
Practicing Tawheed is an essential part of the Shahada. You make Allah One in His Names/Attributes (Asma wa Sifaat), Dominion (Rububiyyah) and Right to Worship (Uluhiyyah).
5. Sincerity (Sidq)
Many do not say the Shahada out of sincerety. For example, it is pronounced to be able to marry, to create a bond or to satisfy another.
So the Shahada is then being pronounced invalidly, because people have invalid reasons for this.
Allah will not accept your Shahada when you convert in order to satisfy others. You should only pronounce the Shahada when you are convinced of Islam. So the main reason must be that you sincerely see Islam as truth and want to please Allah by converting to it.
6. Purity (Al-Ikhlaas)
Conversion to Islam is a big step. It should be done out of purity. That means that you pronounce the Shahada purely and only for Allah.
Some force others to become Muslims. They then pronounce the Shahada so as not to get into trouble. Their Shahada is not valid in that situation, which means that in reality they are not Muslims.
You should therefore pronounce the Islamic testimony of faith purely and only for Allah. Only then will the testimony be accepted.
7. Love (Mahabbah)
The Muslim should accept and love the testimony of faith in its entirety. He loves Allah and His Oneness. He practices Tawheed with full conviction and does it without resentment or opposition.
Loving the Shahada also means loving the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ). You follow his traditions with love and do not hate or disapprove of them.
8. Rejecting idols (Kufr bi Taghut)
The concept of Kufr bi Taghut is part of the Shahada pronunciation, because it contains the saying: 'There is no god besides Allah'. In order to convert to Islam, it is important to distance yourself from all idols.
Former Hindus regularly convert to Islam. They should therefore reject the gods of Hinduism and worship Allah alone. It is not possible for them to enter Islam without rejecting their idols.
In Islam we know the concept of Taghut (false gods). That is everyone who calls towards being worshiped. These are also objects to which divine qualities are attributed. For example, think of amulets, statues and some crystals.
9. Rejecting religions outside Islam
It is obligatory for the Muslim to leave other religions besides Islam. This means that a convert must let go of his or her former religion.
In Islam it is therefore not possible to ascribe to two religions at the same time. A Muslim is one who has embraced Islam and left other religions.
In order to truely convert to Islam, one must reject all forms of Shirk. Islam is a religion of pure Monotheism. So a person must reject idolatry and excommunicate (Takfir) those who practise it.