Treasures of Arabic Morphology (Min Kunuz al-Sarf) by Shaykh Ebrahim Muhammad

Attached is the now widely-used English book of Arabic morphology, compiled by Shaykh Ebrahim Muhammad of Camperdown, South Africa. It is used as the main text for Sarf in many madrasahs today. The book has been published by ZamZam Publishers in Karachi, albeit with poor printing. The margins are missing and the pages/binding are  small and of poor quality. Students tend to prefer to print out the pdf and bind the book themselves. This gives them large margins to write notes on and allows for easier reading because of the larger pages.

The students at the Institute of Islamic Education, however, were given permission by the author to print these copies instead of buying the published book. I suggest that anyone who wishes to do the same obtain permission from the author.

Treasures of Arabic Morphology

Useful Charts for Students of Hidayat al-Nahw

While teaching Hidayat al-Nahw this last year, I chose to stick to the actual book as the text and not the Irani, revamped version entitled Al-Hidayah fi ‘l-Nahw which basically simplifies the text in certain places, adds practice questions and summaries, and inserts neat little charts for visualizing divisions and categories.

Because al-Hidayah fi ‘l-Nahw is relatively hard to find, I decided to retain Hidayat al-Nahw as a text, but instead chose to use Al-Bushra Publication’s version of the book which includes most of the exercises and summaries from the Irani version while essentially retaining the original text (with a few minor changes here and there). The only disadvantage of Bushra’s rendition is that it does not include the charts in the Irani version.

I had some students scan the charts and make a pdf of them. Special thanks to Adam Oraefo for scanning and Wali Shaheed for editing the scan to include only the charts.

Hidayat al-Nahw Charts

Ta’lim al-Muta’allim by Imam Burhan al-Din al-Zarnuji

Many readers may be acquainted with the translation of Imam Burhan al-Din al-Zarnuji’s famous collection of advices for the student of knowledge entitled Ta’lim al-Muta’allim Tariq al-Ta’allum (Instruction of the Student: The Method of Learning).

Although  the English translation of the book is generally sound, there are numerous instances in the translation where the Arabic expressions have been misunderstood, mistranslated, or lost in translation. The true meanings of the book and the power of the author’s prose (not to speak of the poetry) can only be understood in their original language.

Attached is a published version of the book in the original Arabic:

Talim al-Muta’allim Tariq al-Ta’allum

For those readers interested in a manuscript version of the book,I have also provided a link for them below:

You can also find a commentary on the book by Imam Zayn al-Din ibn Isma’il in manuscript form. I believe work is being done (or may be complete) on publishing an edited version of this manuscript. For now, you can access the manuscript through this Saudi website:

Useful Usul al-Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) Books in English


I was wondering if you knew of any usul al-fiqh books in English that I could purchase or get from the library, so I can learn some of the basic usul words.


There are quite a few books that have been published in the last two decades on the science of Islamic law (fiqh) and jurisprudence/ legal methodology (usul al-fiqh). Older publications, in my opinion, such as Abdur Rahim’s  The Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence hold little value now that newer publications have incorporated their original material and improved on their language and terminology.
Of all the books that I have personally come across, I have found Dr. Mohammad Hashim Kamali’s Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence to be the most beneficial for seekers of knowledge in search of the English equivalents of Arabic legal terms. The book’s sequence of chapters and choice of terminology in particular make it most appropriate and suitable for their purposes.
Besides Kamali’s book, I have found publications that have come out of the International Islamic University in Islamabad to be particularly helpful as well (amongst them, the works of Imran Ahsan Khan Nyazee, such as: Theories of Islamic Law: The Methodology of Ijtihad, Outlines of Islamic Jurisprudence, and Islamic Jurisprudence). Of course, we are not speaking about content here as much as choice of terms and fluidity of language. Kamali’s book, however, is much more easily available.
You may also want to check out Shah Abdul Hannan’s online book, Usul al-Fiqh, although I have not compared the language of the work with that of other books. Additionally, you might find benefit in Dr. Taha Jabir al-Alwani’s book Usul al-Fiqh al-Islami: Source Methodology in Islamic Jurisprudence, or its online version (Usul al-Fiqh).
I realize that I am probably leaving out a lot of works that may be better than those I have suggested, but since I have not read many of such books in English, I will suffice with providing a list below of books on the topic from and hoping that readers will also provide their input:
Bilal Ali

al-Anwar al-Qudsiyyah fi Ma’rifat Qawa’id al-Sufiyyah by Imam Sha’rani

Assalamu ‘alaykum,

At the request of a friend, here is Imam ‘Abd al-Wahhab al-Sha’rani’s famous book on the principles of tazkiyah and tasawwuf, entitled al-Anwar al-Qudsiyyah fi Ma’rifat Qawa’id al-Sufiyyah.

The book is in Arabic. I was asked if a translation in English exists. I am not aware of any, but if anyone has information on a translation, please share it with us.

al-Anwar al-Qudsiyyah


Books on Dream Interpretation

Assalamu ‘alaykum,

I was recently informed of a very interesting website that has collected a number of books on dream interpretation (tafsir al-ahlam) and organized them in an easy-to-find, highly accessible manner.

Amongst the books included is Ibn Sirin’s Tafsir al-Ahlam (although many argue about this book’s attribution to the author) as well as Khalil ibn Shahin al-Zahiri’s al-Isharat fi ‘Ilm al-Ibarat and the more recent Ta’tir al-Anam of ‘Abd al-Ghani al-Nabulusi.

Here is the link:

Bilal Ali