Meaning of Ijazah:
Ijazah or Ijaza is an Arabic word “اجازة” which means to allow or to give permission. In the modern term, it is the certificate of transmitting the knowledge that you gained. In the old days, it is given by the teacher to the student by wearing the turbine to the student Nowadays it is given by the institute in the form of a degree or certificate.
Purpose of Ijazah:
The purpose of Ijazah is to secure Religion. The teacher who is teaching you Religion should be an authoritative person. He learns that things in such a way that his teacher or institution is satisfied with his learning and giving him the authority to teach. It is the safety valve that anybody cannot teach anything in Religion. Teaching religion is the sacred responsibility and should be given only to those who are appropriate to this. Nowadays, false information about Religion is circulating because everyone is teaching Religion and doing Dawah without having Ijazah.
The teacher who gives Ijazah is also having the Ijazah from his teacher. This the Golden Chain that goes to Prophet Muhammad SAWW. The student has necessarily required a teacher in learning any field of knowledge. One cannot become a master of that field by reading books and watching videos. Allah SWT sends their messenger with every book. Sometimes it happens that a messenger came without the book, only to endorse the last book. If Allah wants, He can send a book to each individual rather he send a Messenger (teacher) with each book to guide. Prophet Muhammad SAWW said:
“Verily, Allah did not send me to be harsh or obstinate, rather he sent me to teach and to put at ease.” (Sahih- Al-Muslim)
It was narrated that Abdullah bin Amr said:
“The Messenger of Allah came out of one of his house one day and entered the Masjid, where he saw two circles, one reciting Qur’an and supplicating to Allah, and the other learning and teaching. The Prophet said: ‘Both of them are good. These people are reciting the Qur’an and supplicating to Allah, and if He wills He will give them, and if He wills He will withhold from them. And these people are learning and teaching. Verily I have been sent as a teacher.’ Then He SWT sat down with them.”
Giving Ijazah to anyone is a simple task and an honor but with this, it is a heavy responsibility to bear. The one who is giving the Ijazah should not be lenient in giving Ijazah to others. Because if he is giving Ijazah to everyone whether they are competent or not, he not only hurts the religion in this world but instead of getting the reward of giving Ijazah, he will be punished in the Hereafter. ALLAH SWT said in the Quran:
Their testimony will be recorded, and they will be questioned.
(Surah al-Zukhruf: 19)
The one who is getting the ijazah should also be humble in his approach after getting the Ijazah. He shouldn’t be arrogant that he has the Ijazah and those who haven’t have Ijazah is lesser than him. There is a saying of one of the old scholars that the branches of the tree that have fruit on it is bowed towards the earth rather than stand taller. The same is the case with the Ijazah if a person has more Ijazah he should be more humble than others he should do more good deeds than others.
Types of Ijazah:
Ijazah are of many types, Ijazah of giving the fatwa, Ijazah of teaching a text or a book, Ijazah to purify the hearts of the people, Ijazah of teaching the Quranic recitation (reading), Ijazah of Quranic memorization (Hifz). We will talk briefly about the Ijazah for Quranic recitation and memorization.
Ijazah for teaching Quranic recitation:
Ijazah for teaching the Quranic recitation is given from the person who has the Ijazah of it. The student gets this Ijazah by reciting the whole Quran from looking at it with Tajweed to the teacher. This Ijazah means that the student has recited the Quran as it was revealed on Prophet Muhammad SAWW. Ijazah means that the teacher is giving the testimony that the recitation is 100 % correct. If the recitation has one or two lapses than the teacher gives him the Ijazah to read but not to reach until the mistakes corrected. Because the teacher should be perfect for teaching and while making mistakes how can he teach others? These kinds of strictness are for the teachers but for people who are learning the recitation, the teacher has a lenient approach to them while teaching. Learning recitation in such a way that a person can read the Quran without mistakes that changes the meaning is Fard-e-Ain. Every Muslim should learn to recite the Quran properly. The teaching of Quranic recitation is Fard-e-Kifayah means that a sufficient quantity of teachers that the society required to teach Quran to every Muslim is available, then others are free to their work.
Ijazah for Quranic memorization:
This Ijazah is also given the one who memorizes the Quran and also has the Ijazah of teaching it. The student gets this Ijazah by reciting the whole Quran by heart in front of the teacher. Teachers stop him during the recitation and ask questions about Tajweed. The teacher starts reciting from the middle and tells the students that when I stop you start your recitation. The teacher recited an ayat in front of the student and tell him to recite the previous ayat. He recites an ayat and asks him that in which surah this ayat is. Until the teacher gets 100% sure that the student has a great perfection in memorizing the Quran, He will not give Ijazah to the student. To get this Ijazah students have to work hard, day in and day out 2 to 3 years to memorize the Quran. Memorizing the Quran is Fard-e-Kifayah that means some people have to memorize the Quran and that removes the burden from others to memorize it.