HomeTEACHERSTEACHERSShaykh Dr Ridhwan Saleem

Shaykh Dr Ridhwan Saleem


Shaykh Ridhwan graduated in Medicine from Kings College London in 1997. During his clinical training, he commenced his pursuit of Islamic knowledge attending the circles of the spiritual master, Shaykh Nazim al-Haqqani, and sitting at the feet of the prolific thinker and scholar, Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, with whom he completed several texts including the Ajerumiyya in Grammar, Sanusiyya in Aqeedah, and al-Naseeha al-Kafiya of Sidi Ahmad Zarruq. During this time, he also had the blessing of studying some of the Hikam of Ibn `Ata-illah with Shaykh Nuh Ha Mim Keller.

After his graduation and pre-registration training, Shaykh Ridhwan decided to pursue Islamic knowledge full-time and was able to do so with the help of a supportive wife who shared his commitment to Islamic study. They lived for over a year in Liverpool, where Shaykh Ridhwan sat on a daily basis with the Hadith-Master, ‘Allamah Shaykh Siraj al-Islam Chawdry (may Allah protect him), studying Hanafi Fiqh and Tafsir of Quran. Shaykh Ridhwan later asked for Shaykh Siraj’s permission to teach, which he granted.

Following his sojourn in Liverpool, Shaykh Ridhwan continued his studies for several years in the blessed ancient city of Damascus at the feet of notable individuals. His studies were supervised by the erudite scholar, Sayyid Shaykh Muhammad al-Ya’qoubi al-Hassani, who issued him several written ijaazas (licences) to teach the sacred sciences. During his time in Damascus, Shaykh Ridhwan benefited from private classes with several distinguished scholars, including Shaykh Khaleel al-Sabbagh and Shaykh Mur`i al-Rasheed. He had daily classes with Shaykh Abd al-Wahhab Najib in his small mosque in the old souq in the Maghribi quarter of Damascus.

He had the blessing of being taken by Shaykh al-Yaqoubi to sit with some of the spiritual giants of Damascus, many of whom have since returned to Allah ta`ala. These notables included the late Shaykh Ahmad Habbal, the Sayyid, Shaykh Taj al-Deen al-Kittani, and the late Shadhili Master, Shaykh Abd al-Rahman al-Shagouri. He heard the musalsal Hadith al-Rahma from Shaykh al-Shaghouri and received the blessing of the Shaykh holding his subha in his hand along with his own and mixing them together while smiling at Shaykh Ridhwan.

While in Damascus, Shaykh Ridhwan was a regular attendee at the public classes and Friday sermons of the shining beacon of Ahl al-Sunnah in the Arab world, Shaykh Saeed Ramadan al-Bouti. He also met the esteemed Shaykh personally and asked for, and was granted, his blessing and special supplication for the work of the deen in Britain.

Through the grace of Allah subhanahu wa `ta`ala, Shaykh Ridhwan visited the late celebrated scholar of Damascus, Shaykh Adeeb al-Kallas, and, for the blessings of his spiritual connection, requested his Ijaza to teach the religious sciences. Shaykh Adeeb looked at him and immediately granted his permission.

During his time in Damascus, Shaykh Ridhwan lived for several months under the shade of the Mosque of Shaykh Muhyudin Ibn `Arabi, which connects to the Shaykh’s grave, and had the blessing of praying in the mosque on a daily basis.

Shaykh Ridhwan is a medical practitioner, currently specialising and working in field of general adult psychiatry.
He is the Founder and Principal of the West London School of Islamic Studies, and Co-founder and Chair of Lady Nafisa Independent School for Girls. He continues his specialist Islamic studies periodically in private classes with Shaykh Akram al Nadwi in Oxford. He lives with his wife and four children in Hounslow, West London


Alim Degree (Shahada Alimiyyah), issued by Shaykh Akram al Nadwi, al-Salam Institute, endorsed by Nadwatul Ulema, India (1434/2013):

Traditional handwritten Ijaza issued by Shaykh Muhammad al Ya’qoubi of Damascus (1426/2005):


  • Licence (Ijaaza) to Teach all Islamic Sciences, issued by Shaykh Muhammad al Ya’qoubi of Damascus (1426/2005)

  • ‘Ãlim Degree (Shahada ‘Ãlimiyyah), issued by Shaykh Akram al Nadwi, al-Salam Institute, endorsed by Nadwatul Ulema, India (1434/2013)
  • Medical Bachelor & Bachelor of Surgery (MB,BS), Kings College London (1998)

  • Member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (MRCPsych) (2010)

  • MSc in Medical Anthropology, UCL (2013)


  • Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
  • Shaykh Muhammad Akram Nadwi
  • Shaykh Muhammad al Yaqoubi
  • Shaykh Siraj al-Islam Chawdry
  • Shaykh Abdul-Wahhab Najib Sham
  • Shaykh Mur`i al-Rashid Shami
  • Shaykh Khaleel al-Sabbagh

Current Courses

Aqeedah: Al-'Aqa'id An-Nasafiyya

Upcoming Courses

History: Islam & the West

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