Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research

The Need for Orthodoxy | Episode 2

What is Islamic orthodoxy and why do we need it? Who gets to decide what is orthodox and how do we reconcile differences of opinion?

Join our host Imam Tom Facchine and special guest Dr. Tahir Wyatt in unpacking Islamic orthodoxy, its limits, and its assumptions in the way we understand our religion, read the Qur’an, and practice our faith. Additionally, discover how Yaqeen checks papers and content for Islamic orthodoxy.


0:00 – Introduction

2:50 – The Greek roots of the word “orthodox”

7:14 – “Infidels” and fidelity (nasiha)

10:00 – The concept of orthodoxy is important for happiness in life

21:53 – There’s a lot in Islam that no one differs about

23:31 – The Prophet ﷺ’s final advice on dealing with differences

30:22 – What criteria make an ijtihad (interpretation) valid?

32:23 – Differences of opinion among the Sahabah

34:14 – What does it mean to do sajda (prostration) like a camel?

35:29 – Did the Sahabah disagree about aqeedah or just fiqh?

41:43 – How much of our aqeedah is a product of history after the Companions?

43:40 – Ibn Abbas (ra)’s debate with the Khawarij, the first sect in Islam

48:46 – The emergence of the Shi‘a and Murji’ah, and codifying aqeedah

52:42 – Some early written works on aqeedah

56:08 – “New aqeedah” as time goes on?

1:01:32 – The different contexts of Imam Ahmad and Ibn Taymiyya

1:04:05 – Do the works of male scholars uphold the patriarchy?

1:11:34 – The importance of scholars

1:13:56 – How does Yaqeen ensure the orthodoxy of its content?

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Dr. Tahir Wyatt

Senior Fellow | Tahir Wyatt is a published academic, experienced interpreter, and instructor of Islamic studies and comparative religion. During his twenty-one years of studying and teaching in Saudi Arabia, he procured several degrees, including a doctorate in theology. He was also the only American ever to be appointed to teach in the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, the second holiest site in the Muslim world. Dr. Wyatt currently lectures both nationally and internationally at mosques, universities, and other institutions of learning. He serves as the Executive Director of the United Muslim Masjid in Philadelphia and is the President of the Quran, Arabic, and Reflection Institute (QARI), an institute dedicated to structured, curriculum-based instruction of the Quran and Arabic Language.

Tom Facchine

Tom Facchine

Tom Facchine (pronounced fa-KEEN-ee) converted to Islam in 2010 as he was finishing his BA in Political Science. For the next few years he studied Islam and Arabic with local teachers while working with Muslim youth, founding and directing youth groups in two different communities. In 2015 he was accepted into the University of Madinah and is now close to completing a bachelor’s degree in Islamic Law. In addition to youth group activities, for the past two years Tom has directed an after school program for young Muslims called the Ramadan Academy, which operates out of the GCLEA mosque in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Tom’s academic and personal background brings a unique dual ability to relate to mainstream Western cultural norms and engage them from a traditional Islamic perspective. His unique teaching style is highly interactive and brings high-level concepts to a level that even children can understand. He is passionate about building relationships with Muslim youth and giving them the tools and confidence to live as observant, well-adjusted people of faith in our times.