What do the scholars and muftis of the mighty Shari’ah say regarding this matter, what is the belief of the Ahlus-Sunnah in regard to the ‘Arsh and Kursī of Allah (Most High)?

Questioner: Qamar from UK


بسم اللہ الرحمن الرحیم
الجواب بعون الملک الوھاب اللھم ھدایۃ الحق والصواب

The linguistic meaning of ‘Arsh in the Arabic Language is ‘a king’s throne’. The belief of the Ahl al-Sunnah regarding the ‘Arsh of Allāh (Most High) is that it is Real and True, meaning it exists, because Allāh (Most High) mentions it in the Qurān:

Allāh (Most High) says,

{اَلَّذِیۡنَ یَحْمِلُوۡنَ الْعَرْشَ وَ مَنْ حَوْلَہٗ یُسَبِّحُوۡنَ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّہِمْ}

{Those (angels) who carry the Throne, and those who are around it, proclaim the Purity of their Lord while praising Him}

[Sūrah al-Mu’min, verse 7]

And whilst proclaiming its greatness, He (Most High) said,

{وَ رَبُّ الْعَرْشِ الْعَظِیۡمِ}

{and The Owner of the Great Throne}

[Sūrah al-Mu’minūn, verse 86]

The belief of the Ahl al-Sunnah regarding the Kursī is that it is also real and it exists, and is in front of the throne; Allāh (Most High) mentions it in the Noble Qurān,

{وَسِعَ کُرْسِیُّہُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَالۡاَرْضَ}

{The heavens and the earth are encompassed in His Throne}

[Sūrah al-Baqarah, verse 255]

Also, it is mentioned in ‘Aqīdah Tahāwiyah,

“وَ اَلْعَرْشُ وَ اَلْكُرْسِيُّ حَقٌّ”

In its commentary, ‘Allamah Muhammad bin Muhammad al-Bābartī says that some scholars said that the meaning of Kursī is the Divine Knowledge of Allah and the ‘Arsh is His Sovereignty and Kingship. After mentioning these statements, he states,

“المذہب الصحیح عند علمائنا ان کل ماثبت بالکتاب والسنۃ ولایتعلق بہ العمل فانہ لایجب الاشتغال بتاویلہ بل یجب الاعتقاد بثبوتہ وحقیقۃ المراد بہ”

“According to our scholars [of the Ahl al-Sunnah], the correct methodology is that all those things that are established in the Qurān and the Sunnah and do not have any relation to action [‘amal], then it is necessary that one does not preoccupy oneself with their interpretation, rather, it is necessary to believe in their existence and the reality of their intended meaning.”

[Sharh’ Aqīdah al-Tahāwiyah li Akmal al-Dīn Muhammad bin Muhammad al-Bārbartī, pg 93]

It has become apparent that no interpretation of the ‘Arsh and Kursī will be made, but it is necessary to have faith in their existence.

In addition, the Qur’ān and Hadīth do not explain the appearance of the ‘Arsh and Kursī.

Just as my master A’lā Hazrat the Imām of the Ahl al-Sunnah Imām Ahmad Ridā Khān (may Allāh shower him with mercy) mentions in al-Malfūz that the scholars of Fiqh and of Hadīth have not mentioned anything about the physical attributes of the Kursī, the philosophers say that it is the eighth heaven; it encompasses the seven heavens; it contains all the stars, but the Sharī’ah does not mention this.

Likewise, the ignorant philosophers say that the ‘Arsh is the ninth heaven and call it “فلكِ اطلس”, as it does not contain any large star. However, it becomes apparent from Hadīth that it does encompass the heavens and the earth, and its pillars are of Yāqūt (a precious stone). At this moment, four angels are carrying it on their shoulders and on the Day of Judgement, eight angels will carry it, as it is proven from the Majestic Qur’ān,

{وَ یَحْمِلُ عَرْشَ رَبِّکَ فَوْقَہُمْ یَوْمَئِذٍ ثَمٰنِیَۃٌ}

{and on that Day, eight angels will carry the Throne of your Lord above themselves}

[Sūrah al-Hāqqah, verse 17]

The distance between the feet and knees of these angels is a journey of 500 years.

The reason Āyah al-Kursī is called Āyah al-Kursī is because the Kursī is mentioned in it,

{وَسِعَ کُرْسِیُّہُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَالۡاَرْضَ}

{The heavens and the earth are encompassed in His Throne}

[Sūrah al-Baqarah, verse 255]

The Kursī is extremely vast; the Earth and the heavens before the Kursī are like a ring in an open field. My master A’lā Hazrat the Imām of the Ahl al-Sunnah Imām Ahmad Ridā Khān (may Allāh shower him with mercy) further states that it has been narrated in authentic Hadīth that they are like a ring in an open land whose borders cannot be seen.

“مَا السَّمٰوٰتُ السَّبْعُ وَ الْاَرْضُوْنَ السَّبْعُ مَعَ الْکُرْسِیِّ اِلاَّ کَحَلقَۃٍ مُلقَاۃٍ فِیْ اَرْضٍ فُلاَۃٍ”

“In comparison to the Kursī, the seven heavens and the seven earths are like a ring [or a loop] in a vast land.”

[Tafsīr Durr al-Manthūr, Sūrah al-Baqarah, taht al-Āyah 255, vol 2, pg 18 & Malfūzāt e A’lā Hazrat, pg 509]

When everything else ceases to exist, the ‘Arsh and Kursī will be amongst those seven things which will not perish, just as it is mentioned in Sharh ‘Aqā’id Nasafiyyah,”

[لا تفنيان] قال أھل السنّۃ والجماعۃ نصرھم اللہ :سبعۃ لا تفنی العرش والكرسيّ واللوح والقلم والجنّۃ والنار بأھلھما والأرواح، يدلّ عليہ قولہ تعالی (وَ یَوْمَ یُنۡفَخُ فِی الصُّوۡرِ فَفَزِعَ مَنۡ فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَمَنۡ فِی الْاَرْضِ اِلَّا مَنۡ شَآءَ اللہُ ) [النمل:87], يعني الجنّۃ والنار بأھلھما من ملائكۃ العذاب والحورالعين, كما في “بحر الكلام”, كذا في “الجوھرۃ المنيفۃ””

“[They will not perish] Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jamā’ah (may Allah grant them victory) have said, ‘Seven things will not perish the ‘Arsh, the Kursī, the Preserved Tablet (al-Lawh) the Pen (al-Qalam), Jannah and Jahannam with their people and the souls. The statement of Allāh indicates upon this:

{And the Day when the Trumpet will be blown, so all those who are in the heavens and all those who are in the earth will be terrified, except whomsoever Allah wills}

[Surah al-Naml, verse 87]

Meaning Jannah, Jahannam with their people including the Angels of punishment and the Maidens of Jannah as is mentioned in ‘Bahr al-Kalām’ and similarly ‘al-Jawharah al-Munīfah.’”

[Hāshiyah Sharh ‘Aqā’id Nasafiyyah, Matbū’ah, Maktabah al-Madīnah, pg 250]

واللہ تعالی اعلم ورسولہ اعلم صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم
کتبہ ابو الحسن محمد قاسم ضیاء قادری

Answered by Mufti Qasim Zia al-Qadri

Translated by Zameer Ahmed

Read the original Urdu answer here – [Q-ID0244] What is the correct belief in regard to the ‘Arsh and Kursi of Allah

Also see:

[Q-ID0612] What is the benefit in reciting Ayah al-Kursi?

Share this with your family & friends: