Can a “Good Muslim” Be a “Bad Person”? Aligning Faith and Character

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


This article addresses the misconception that religious worship is separate from moral character, or that someone can be a “good Muslim” but a “bad person.” Faith in Islam, as described in the Qur’an and Sunnah, consists of not only a theological creed but also a set of character dispositions. The five pillars of Islam, which are the religion’s core rituals of worship, all contain moral dimensions that inform both a believer’s relationship to their Creator and to other created beings. It is a categorical error, then, to claim someone can simultaneously be a “good Muslim” and a “bad person” because a good Muslim believer is, by definition, a good person.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Specialist publicationYaqeen Institute for Islamic Research
StatePublished - Jul 3 2019


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