Hadith: Actions are by Intentions

On the authority of Amir al-Mu’minin (Leader of the Believers), Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin al-Khattab (peace and blessings of Alla be upon him), said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), say:

“Actions are according to intentions, and everyone will get what was intended. Whoever migrates with an intention for Allah and His messenger, the migration will be for the sake of Allah and his Messenger. And whoever migrates for worldly gain or to marry a woman, then his migration will be for the sake of whatever he migrated for.”

Related by Bukhari & Muslim


This hadith is very important when it comes to the day-to-day lives of Muslims, and most importantly and shows the balance between the internal and external states of oneself. It’s crucial for this generation, as well as future generations and guides us on the right path in knowing how actions will be judged hereafter. Scholars from all over the world have made comments and said: “this hadith comprises one-third of knowledge because the actions of man involve his heart, his tongue and his limbs, and hence the intention in the heart is one-third of action”. In addition, the hadith is also regarded to be one-third of knowledge due to scholars commenting that this hadith along with two others comprises the religion of Islam. The other two hadith being “The Halal is clear and the Haram is clear and between them are doubtful matters”(1), and “Whoever innovates in this religion that which is not from it will have all his actions rejected (by Allah).”


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