It is Sunnah to start lectures with Khutbat-ul-Haajah
Fatwa No: 347455

Question

Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu. Why do shaykhs always begin lectures by praising Allaah and sending the Salaam on Muhammad, sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam? If this is Sunnah, does it also apply to non-religious lectures, like a physics lecture? What are some of the Sunnah-related acts/words of religious and non-religious lectures?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger. 

It is part of the Sunnah that the speaker starts his talk in lessons, speeches, and lectures by praising Allah and sending salutations and blessings to the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) as the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) used to do so, and he taught the Companions to do so as well.

Ibn Mas'ood, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated:

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) taught us the Khutbat-ul-Haajah as follows: ‘Praise be to Allah, we praise Him and we seek His help. We seek refuge with Allah from the evil of our own souls; whomsoever Allah guides will never be led astray; and whomsoever is led astray, no one can guide. I bear witness that none has the right to be worshiped but Allah alone, with no partner, and that Muhammad is His slave and His Messenger. O you who believe {Fear Allah, through whom you ask one another, and the wombs. Indeed Allah is ever, over you, an Observer.} [Quran 4:1]; {O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not except in the state of Islam (as Muslims) with complete submission to Allah.} [Quran 3:102] {O you who believe! Fear Allah and speak words of appropriate justice. He will [then] amend for you your deeds and forgive you your sins. And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly attained a great attainment.} [Quran 33:71]” [Ahmad, Abu Daawood and Al-Bayhaqi in As-Sunan Al-Kubra]

Al-Bayhaqi added, “Shu’bah (one of the narrators) said, ‘I asked Abu Is-haaq, is this for the Khutbah of marriage or otherwise?’ He replied, ‘For every need.’

Therefore, it is permissible for the speaker, even in non-religious lectures such as other scientific lectures, to start his speech with this Khutbah – Khutbat-ul-Haajah – which includes praising Allah and sending salutations and blessings on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ). Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said, “It is for this reason that Khutbat-ul-Haajah is recommended, and it is said when addressing the people with knowledge in general and in particular: teaching the Quran and the Sunnah, Fiqh, admonishing people, and debating with them. It is recommended to start with this Islamic Prophetic Khutbah ... The hadeeth of Ibn Mas’ood did not specify the marriage ceremony, but it is a Khutbah for every need when people address each other...

It is also recommended in those lessons and lectures to conclude them with sending salutations on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ). Ibn Al-Qayyim said in Jalaa’ Al-Afhaam, when mentioning the contexts in which the salutations on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) are said, “The twenty-third context of the contexts of sending salutations on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is when teaching knowledge to the people, when reminding them, when mentioning stories, when giving a lesson, and when teaching knowledge to the people; at the start and at the end of all that.” 

He  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him also said:

The tenth context of sending salutations on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is when the people meet and before they disperse, and we have already mentioned ahaadeeth in this regard from the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) (as it was reported) in different narrations that he said, ‘There are no people who sit in a meeting and then disperse without mentioning Allah and without sending salutations on the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) except that Allah sends sorrow upon them; if He wishes, He will punish them, and if He wishes, He will forgive them." [Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh; Al-Haakim and others]

Also, ‘Abdullah ibn Idrees Al-Awdi narrated from Hishaam ibn ‘Urwah, from his father, from ‘Aa’ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, that she said, “Adorn your gatherings with sending salutations and blessing upon the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention )."

Allah knows best.

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