Al-Kursi Verse

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Al-Kursi Verse
Verse's Information
NameAyat al-Kursi
Content Information
Cause of
Place of
AboutTawhid • Divine Names and attributes
OthersThe greatest verse in the Qur'an
Related VersesVerses 256-257 of Sura al-Baqara

Al-Kursī Verse (Arabic: آیة الکرسی) is the verse 255 of the Qur'an 2 (Sura al-Baqara) in the Qur'an. Some exegetes of the Qur'an have taken its following two verses (256-257) to be part of the al-Kursi Verse. This is the only verse in the Qur'an in which "God's Kursi (seat or throne)" is mentioned as extending to the heavens and the Earth. This is why the verse was known as the al-Kursi Verse. It was called so since the time of the Prophet (s).

According to hadiths, it is recommended to recite this verse in all conditions, particularly after performing prayers, before going to sleep, when leaving home, when facing dangers and troubles, when driving a vehicle to prevent evil eyes, for health, and so on.

Text and Translation of the Verse

The verse 255, and also according to some hadiths and views of some scholars of Qur'anic exegesis verses 256 and 257, of the Qur'an 2 are parts of the al-Kursi Verse.[1]


From Muslim scholars' viewpoint, the two notions of "Qayyum" and "Kursi" have been more controversial than various other notions in this verse. The word "kursi" means seat, throne, knowledge, and the realm. In different hadiths by Imams of the Shi'a, "kursi" in this verse has been interpreted as divine knowledge; thus, the verse means that "his knowledge extends to heavens and the Earth".[2]

According to a hadith from Imam al-Sadiq (a), "kursi" is a sort of knowledge, unique to God, of which He has not informed any of his prophets and Imams.[3]

Al-Kursi Verse or al-Kursi Verses

The majority view among Shiite exegetes of the Quran that only verse 255 of Qur'an 2 counts as al-Kursi verse,[4] and its two following verses are not part of al-Kursi.[5] 'Allama al-Tabataba'i, the author of Quranic exegesis al-Mizan, believes that al-Kursi verse is verse 255 of Qur'an 2, ending in "wa-huwa al-'ali al-'azim."[6] Makarim Shirazi, a contemporary Shiite exegete of the Quran, presents six pieces of evidence that al-Kursi verse is confined to verse 255 of Qur'an 2, including:

All verses concerning the virtue of this verse refer only to this verse as al-Kursi verse; The term "al-kursi" appears only in verse 255; There are hadiths according to which al-Kursi verse consists of fifty words, and the number of verse 255’s words is fifty.[7] He argues that hadiths in which the recitation of the following two verses is commanded do not refer to those verses as al-Kursi.[8]

Against the majority view, some people have adduced certain hadiths[9] [10] to demonstrate that verses 256 and 257 of Qur'an 2 are also part of al-Kursi verses.[11] They believe that such hadiths are the ground for the common practice among the Shias to recite the following two verses as al-Kursi.[12] Another reason to include verses 256 and 257 in al-Kursi verse is the deep tie between their themes.[13] In his al-'Urwat al-wuthqa, al-Sayyid Muhammad Kazim al-Yazdi believes that one had better recite to the end of verse 257 when reciting al-Kursi verse in the Prayer of Burial Night.[14]

Merits and Benefits

With respect to its content, the al-Kursi Verse contains deep religious doctrines, and hadiths have emphasized the merits of reciting the verse and its positive impacts on one's life.

The verse came to be called "al-Kursi" since the time of the Prophet (s). He is quoted as saying that "the greatest verse in the Qur'an is the al-Kursi Verse"[15] and "the master of all words in the Qur'an; the master of the Qur'an is Sura al-Baqara, and the master of Sura al-Baqara is the al-Kursi Verse".[16] The verse has always been particularly honored by Muslims, since all Islamic doctrines rest upon monotheism, which is comprehensively summarized in the al-Kursi Verse. The verse characterizes both the Divine Essence and the Divine attributes and acts.[17]

There are many hadiths in both Shiite and Sunni sources concerning the features and positive impacts of reciting the al-Kursi Verse in different circumstances. According to these hadiths, it is recommended to recite this verse in all conditions, particularly after performing prayers, before going to sleep, when leaving home, when facing dangers and troubles, when riding a vehicle, to prevent evil eyes, for health, and so on.[18]


Many scholars have written independent books or essays on the exegesis of this verse, such as Abd al-Razzaq al-Kashani, Shams al-Din al-Khafri, Mulla Sadra and his son, and among the contemporary scholars, Muhammad Taqi Falsafi.


  1. Muʿīnī, Āyat al-kursī, p. 101.
  2. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 2, p. 272.
  3. Ṣadūq, Maʿānī l-akhbār, vol. 1, p. 67.
  4. Muʾassisa Dāʾirat al-maʿārif al-fiqh al-Islāmī, Farhang-i fiqh-i farsī, vol. 1, p. 174; Kūsha, Āyat al-Kursī, p. 119.
  5. Ṭūsī,al-Amālī,vol. 2, p. 278.
  6. Ḥusaynī Tihrānī, Mihr-i tābān, p. 177.
  7. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 2, p. 276-277.
  8. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 2, p. 277.
  9. See: Kulaynī, al-Kāfī, vol. 2, p. 621.
  10. According to a hadith from the Prophet (s): he who recites the first four verses of Qur'an 2, al-Kursi verse, and its following two verses, and the last three verses of the sura will see no harm in his life and property and no devil will approach him.
  11. Mu'īnī, Āyat al-Kursī, p. 100.
  12. Dashtī, Āyat al-Kursī, p. 469.
  13. Kūsha, Āyat al-Kursī, p. 120.
  14. Ṭabāṭabāʾī Yazdī, al-ʿUrwat al-wuthqā, vol. 2, p.126
  15. Sayūṭī, al-Jāmiʿ al-ṣaghīr, vol. 1, p. 47.
  16. Sayūṭī, al-Jāmiʿ al-ṣaghīr, vol. 2, p. 35.
  17. Ghazālī, Jawāhir al-Qurān, p. 73-75.
  18. Muʿīnī, "Āyat al-kursī", p. 101.


  • Ghazālī, Muḥammad b. Muḥammad al-. Jawāhir al-Qurān. Edited by Muḥammad Rashīd Riḍā al-Qurbānī. Beirut: Dār Iḥyāʾ al-ʿUlūm, 1411 AH.
  • Makārim Shīrāzī, Nāṣir. Tafsīr-i nimūna. Tehran: Dār al-Kutub al-Islāmīyya, 1380 Sh.
  • Muʾassisa Dāʾirat al-maʿārif al-fiqh al-Islāmī. Farhang-i fiqh-i farsī. Under the supervision of Sayyid Maḥmūd Shāhrūdī. Qom: Muʾassisat Dāʾirat al-Maʿārif al-Fiqh al-Islāmī, 1382 Sh.
  • Muʿīnī, Muḥsin. "Āyat al-kursī" dar dānishnāma-yi Qurʾān wa Qurʾān Pazhūhī. volume 1. Tehran: Dūstān-Nāhīd, 1377 Sh.
  • Ṣadūq, Muḥammad b. ʿAlī al-. Maʿānī l-akhbār. Edited by ʿAlī Akbar Ghaffārī. Tehran: Dār al-Kutub al-Islāmīyya, 1377 Sh.
  • Suyūṭī, ʿAbd al-Raḥmān b. Abī Bakr al-. Al-Jāmiʿ al-ṣaghīr fī aḥādīth al-bashīr al-nadhīr. Cairo: [n.p], 1373 AH.
  • Ṭabāṭabāʾī Yazdī, Muḥammad Kāẓim al-. Al-ʿUrwat al-wuthqā fīmā taʿummu bih al-balwā. . Qom: Jāmiʿat al-Mudarrisīn, 1417-1420 AH.
  • Ṭūsī, Muḥammad b. al-Ḥasan al-. Al-Amālī. Qom: Dār al-Thiqāfa, 1414 AH.