Islamic concepts

Kufr كفر — ungratefulness; rejection of faith; denial and rejection of Islam; ungratefulness

ALA-LC kufr
IPA kʊfr


Kufr comes from the verb kafara, which literally means ‘to bury or cover up’. For example, a farmer who covers up a seed with dirt is literally doing kufr.

Spiritually, to do kufr is to suppress, to deny, to reject, to be ungrateful.

bury in the dark 27:14

Antonyms of yield: deny, oppose, reject Deniers, opponents, rejecters

spiritual suppression, disbelief

A disbeliever is someone who has been given evidence, and out of arrogance he rejects it" -Hamza Tzortzis

Literally, Kufr كفر is the action of burying or hiding something. For example, a farmer who covers up a seed with dirt is literally doing Kufr.

Muslims believe it’s hard-wired in our inner human instinct to recognize that there’s Something Greater than the material world. Kufr is to suppress or dismiss your ability to be humble and grateful, to reject or deny the inner spark in your soul.

  • to repress your yearning towards God
  • to deny your ability to be at your humblest before something
  • suppress your belief
  • suppress your inner Muslim
  • to not allow yourself to feel, show, or be affected by (an emotion)
  • refusing to use the source of energy, illumination within you
  • “to fail to acknowledge,” “to deny,” hence “to be thankless,”
  • one who turns away from Islam
  • (during times of peace and coexistence in Makkah) non-Muslim
  • (during Madinah times of war) person who is hostile to Muslims
  • dismisses or discredits
  • cover up your ability to feel humble

“a person who is a kafir hides God’s truth and covers his or her heart and mind, refusing to accept the existence of God.” (Yahiya Emerick)

al-Kufr al-Akbar الكفر الأكبر — Major Kufr

No longer a Muslim.

  1. Kufr of denial
  2. Kufr of arrogance
  3. Kufr of doubt: claims he is not sure
  4. Kufr of turning away: hears the basics of Islam and has capacity
  5. Kufr of hypocrisy: pretending to be a Muslim, when secretly you are not

Minor Kufr

  1. Denying others their lineage
  2. Denying one’s father
  3. Wailing over dead people

Examples of Kufr

  • To mockingly boast and belittle the Divine ... “God has certainly heard the words of those who sneer, ‘So God is poor, while we are rich’. We shall record everything they say––as well as their killing of prophets in defiance of all that is right- and We shall say to them, ‘Taste the torment of the scorching fire.’” (3:181)


See also