Surah al-Fatihah: The Opening Chapter of The Quran

Surah al-Fatihah is the first chapter (Surah) of the Quran. Its seven verses (Ayah) are a prayer for Guidance and Mercy of Allah. This Surah is so named because of its content and placement in The Quran. Fatihah means a Key or an Opener. It could be for anything, like in this case Opener or Preface of the Quran. It is interpreted as a reference to an implied ability of the Surah to open a person to faith in Allah.

The theme of this Surah is devoted to the main beliefs of Islam: existence and faith in Allah, following the message of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and purification of the soul and good character. As a whole, Surah al-Fatihah is a generalization of the main themes of the Quran.

Understanding the Message of Surah al-Fatihah

The first three verses of this Surah are dedicated to Allah. Allah speaks of His Dominion, His creations, Power, Names, and Qualities. Allah says in the first verses: “Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds, the Merciful, the Ruler of the day of recompense.” (1:2-4).

These verses are dedicated to increasing our knowledge about Allah, because with the growth of knowledge about Him, our love, commitment and submission to Him increases. Human nature is about learning what we love the most and loving what we know best. This is why we love our parents, spouses, and children. We often love the country we live in the most, because we know it better. We also love the cuisine of our own people more than those of others, as we have known it the longest. However, the love of Muslims for Allah obviously exceeds any other feelings of love.

In this Surah, we have the supplication to cure the Muslim’s heart from the diseases of rejection, ignorance, and misguidance. Surah al-Fatihah shows that the greatest blessing is the Blessing of Islam. Therefore, whoever knows the truth and follows it, will be most deserving of the Straight Path. There is no doubt that the companions of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) are the most deserving of the people, right after the Prophets of the Straight Path. The last Ayah indicates their great status because Allah bestowed favor upon them — may Allah be pleased with them all.

Surah al-Fatihah in Arabic

First, let us look at Surah al-Fatihah in Arabic:

Surah al-Fatihah Arabic I

English Translation

  1. In the name of Allah, the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful.
  2. (All) praise is (due) to Allah, Lord of the worlds –
  3. The Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful,
  4. Sovereign of the Day of Recompense.
  5. It is You we worship and You we ask for help.
  6. Guide us to the straight path –
  7. The path of those upon whom You have bestowed favor, not of those who have evoked (Your) anger or of those who are astray.

Surah al-Fatihah in Pictures

Here is each verse of Surah al-Fatihah as a separate image. Feel free to share these with your family and friends.

Ayah 01

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 01

Ayah 02

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 02

Ayah 03

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 03

Ayah 04

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 04

Ayah 05

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 05

Ayah 06

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 06

Ayah 07

Surah al-Fatihah Ayah 07

Read our notes about other Surahs from The Quran here.

Text by Aruzhan Nuraly / Images by Tarannum Afrin

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