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Tawakkul (Arabic: تَوَكُّل‎) is an Arabic word which literally means reliance-on or trust-in and it is one of the most important topics in Islamic ethic, because it related to the essential part of monotheism. Therefore, he who does not believe in the existence and absolute power of Allah will find it so difficult to trust or rely on him. In fact, the real meaning of tawakkul lies in the word “La-ilaaha -illallah, wa laa- hawla wa laa quwwata illa billaahil ‘Alliyil Adheem”, or the word “Laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa billah”. Thus the aboved words should only be expressed by the person who realized and believed that; he is not an independent entity and he is in need of independent entity and absolute power in all of his affairs.


  • According to one scholar, the word tawakkul is an Arabic masdar (verbal noun) derived from the fifth form of the (Arabic root وكلw-k-l) or وکالت (wakalat), meaning "taking for oneself a representative" or “appointing someone as one’s trustee (wakil).[1]
  • While others said; The root of the word Tawakkul (Trust) is Wakala (counsel or representation).[2]

Meaning of Ath-Tawakkual[edit]

  • Ath-Tawakkul in the Arabic language, is the word for the(Entrusting results in Allah after the effort is made)Islamic concept of reliance on God or "trusting in God's plan".[3]
  • It is also refers to as "perfect trust in God and reliance on Him alone."[4]
  • Tawakkul as a theological concept was formalized by Shaqiq al-Balkhi (d. 810), who defined it as a spiritual state or hal. Tawakkul is also considered a natural result of extreme zuhd.[5] Zuhd can be described as being based on tawakkul or "trust in God alongside love of poverty."[6]
  • A scholar wrote that someone that trusts in God is like a baby seeking its mother's breast and always finds it. He says that just like the infant, the one who trusts God is always led to God.[7]

Ranks of tawakkul[edit]

  • It has been said that there are three ranks of tawakkul: the trust of the believers, the trust of the select, and the trust of the select of the select.[8]
  • Each of these ranks are achieved through active reformation of the mind and self.[9]
  • The truth of the believers is simply living one day at a time and not worrying what tomorrow will bring you; simply trusting in what God has planned.[8]
  • The trust of the select is trusting God with no motives or desires. It is casting aside all wants.[8] *And finally the trust of the select of the select is giving yourself over to God completely so that His desires become yours.[8]
  • In other words, "trust in God is to be satisfied with and rely on God Most High."[7] It is said that because God created everything and therefore everything belongs to him, it is selfish to want anything other than what God wants or not want something God gives to you.[10]


Since early times in Islam there has been debate as to the extent of tawakkul as a virtue in everyday life.[11] This debate centered around questions such as whether or not tawakkul allowed for God to use intermediary causes, and the degree of reliance on God.[clarification needed] Views of extreme and total dependence on God to the point of pure fatalism were popular among rejectionist ascetics.[12] Thinkers such as Bisṭāmī instead advocate the virtue of "kasab", or "earning a living".[11]

See Another Islamic Word[edit]


  1. ^ Ayatullah Naser Makarem Shirazi (2014). 180 Questions Enquires about Islam, vol two:Various Issues. Create space Independent publication. ISBN 9781499138849.
  2. ^ Ayatullah Dastghaib Shirazi (2014). Isti'adha: seeking Allah's protection from satan. Create space Independent publication. ISBN 9781496031822.
  3. ^ "Ibn Abī al-Dunyā: Certainty and Morality". Leonard Librande, Studia Islamica, No. 100/101 (2005), pp. 5-42. Published by: Maisonneuve & Larose
  4. ^ "Islamic Philosophy in South and South-East Asia". Companion Encyclopedia of Asian Philosophy. 2002.
  5. ^ "The Transition from Asceticism to Mysticism at the Middle of the Ninth Century C.E.", Melchert, Christopher. Studia Islamica, No. 83 (1996), pp. 51-70. Published by: Maisonneuve & Larose
  6. ^ Kinberg, Leah (1985). "What is Meant by Zuhd". Studia Islamica. 61: 33–34.
  7. ^ a b al-Qushayri, Abu 'l-Qasim (2007). Al-Qushayri's Epistle on Sufism. Lebanon: Garnet Publishing. pp. 178–188.
  8. ^ a b c d Sells, Michael (1996). Early Islamic Mysticism. New York: Paulist Press. pp. 209–209.
  9. ^ Hamdy, Sherine (2009). "Islam, Fatalism, and Medical Intervention: Lessons from Egypt on the Cultivation of Forbearance (Sabr) and Reliance of God (Tawakkul)". Anthropological Quarterly. 82 (1): 173–196. doi:10.1353/anq.0.0053.
  10. ^ Schimmel, Annemarie (1975). Mystical Dimensions of Islam. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press. pp. 117–120.
  11. ^ a b Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second on. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel and W. P. Heinrichs. Brill, 2010. Brill Online
  12. ^ "The Ethical Concerns of Classical Sufism", Awn, Peter J. The Journal of Religious Ethics, Vol. 11, No. 2 (Fall, 1983), pp. 240-263. Published by: Blackwell Publishing

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