Bismillah Allah Rahaman Al Raheem (In the Name of the Gracious, the Merciful).
I ask Allah swt to guide us on the straight path, and unite us to truth. This article is a reminder for myself firstmost, a reminder for readers, and a reflection upon reading/learning. I ask that Allah forgive us for previous sins and inshaAllah benefit from whatever we have sought in the past and continue on seeking in future.
Seeking Islamic Knowledge is an important aspect in which all of us should seek, whether practicing or not, it is much needed. I feel though, there is too much information these days, from our classes in school, our parents, friends, magazines, and everywhere. Yet, it’s never ever enough I feel, and it’s always to recap of what was learned.
The first questions asked in grave:
- Who is your Lord?
- Who is your prophet?
- who is your deen (religion)?
In fact, the Angels lower their wings to those who seek knowledge. A person who benefits from seeking knowledge will benefit her/himself and others. Another fact, Allah fears from knowledgeable scholars, because how they use the knowledge.
The Importance of Seeking Knowledge:
0 Abu’l-Darda (RA) reported that the Messenger of Allah (PBH) said, “He who follows a path in quest of knowledge, Allah will make the path of Jannah easy to him. The angels lower their wings over the seeker of knowledge, being pleased with what he does. The inhabitants of the heavens and the earth, and even the fish in the depth of the oceans, seek forgiveness for him. The superiority of the learned man over the devout worshipper is like that of the full moon to the rest of the stars (i.e: in brightness). The learned are the heirs of the Prophets who bequeath neither dinar nor dirham but only that of knowledge; and he who accquires it, has in fact acquired an abundant portion.” (Abu Dawud & al-Tirmidhi)
The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “Allah makes the way to Jannah easy for him who treads the path in search of knowledge.”[Muslim]
|Sunnah.com reference||: Book 13, Hadith 6|
|Arabic/English book reference||: Book 13, Hadith 1381|
|English reference||: Vol. 1, Book 1, Hadith 224|
|Arabic reference||: Book 1, Hadith 229|
The Intention behind Seeking Knowledge:
0 Abu Huraryah (RA) reported that the Messenger of Allah (PBH) said, “He who does not acquire knowledge with the sole intention of seeking the pleasure of Allah but for worldly gain, will not smell the fragrance of Jannah on the Day of Resurrection.” (Abu Dawud)
0 Imam Ghazali, his story of sincerity….He first did it for wrong reason, then he changed his intention.
There are three types of students (Imam Basari described them):
- Destroyed: they know they’re in for wrong reason.
- the ones who are not going into seeking knowledge for wrong intention, but are struggling. They continue and work work on their intention.
- winners (the successful): those who are consistently to reform themselves. (May Allah swt make us among them)
Secret to attain Knowledge:
- Abandoning the sins.
- to abandon sins, knowledge of Allah swt.
- can not be acquired with laziness. Knowledge will not give part of it until you give it all yourself.
The Effort of Seeking Knowledge:
0 Abdullah narrated on the authority of his father Yahya: “Knowledge can not be acquired with sloth.”
|Reference||: Sahih Muslim 612 f|
|In-book reference||: Book 5, Hadith 224|
|USC-MSA web (English) reference||: Book 4, Hadith 1277|
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0 The Messenger of Allah said: “Ask Allah for beneficial knowledge and seek refuge with Allah from knowledge that is of no benefit.” (Hasan)
|Reference||: Sunan Ibn Majah 3843|
|In-book reference||: Book 34, Hadith 17|
|English translation||: Vol. 5, Book 34, Hadith 3843|
Being Purified by Knowledge:
0 The Distinction between Bani Isra’il and the Ummah of Muhammad (PBH)
0 Choosing the Right Scholar:
– Ibn Sirin (Rahimahullah) said: “The knowledge of hadith (in the same manner all other religious subjects) is included in the din. Therefore, before acquiring knowledge, be aware from whom knowledge is acquired.”
0 Acting upon the Knowledge:
– Al-Imam al-Shafi’i said: “Knowledge is not that which is memorized, but instead that which benefits.”
0 It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that: The Prophet said: “The best of charity is when a Muslim man gains knowledge, then he teaches it to his Muslim brother.” (Da’if)
|English reference||: Vol. 1, Book 1, Hadith 243|
|Arabic reference||: Book 1, Hadith 250|
So where does the bad come in, you may think? Well, let’s continue on reading:
Practice what you preach:
* Do you order righteousness of the people and forget yourselves while you recite the Scripture? Then will you not reason? (al-Baqarah: 44)
—> It hit me hard when I saw this aya and the punshiment of telling someone what to do while we are not doing
it. Every where I see, I hear, “share knowledge”, “share what is learned”….etc. Yet, before we go on sharing, are we ourselves practicing it? may Allah forgive us and distance us from this pitfall.
Don’t Preach what you don’t practice:
* O you have believed, why do you say what you do not do? Great is hatred in the sight of Allah that you say what you do not do (al-Saff: 2-3)
This is very important. I am reflecting upon myself. What has happened in the past obviously can’t be taken back, but the future is what holds, and the present is where I am. InshaAllah as long as we maintain trying and avoid these as much as possible, I pray Allah swt accept from us and distance us from these sins, on preaching without practicing, (ameen).
The Pitfalls on Seeking Knowledge:
|English reference||: Vol. 1, Book 1, Hadith 253|
|Arabic reference||: Book 1, Hadith 262|
The Pursuit that Never Ends: What is the greatest difficulty of knowledge?
- Establishing an Environment of Accountability.
- developing the Attitude of a True Student
- Understand the role of the people of knowledge
- keep the company of the righteous
Umar b. al-Khattab said, “May Allah have mercy on whomever guides us to our faults.”
- Consider what your enemies say about you.
- learn from the flaws of people around you.
- learn from the people of all ages
- learn from your family members
- learn from people above you and below you.
Last but not least: Mu’adh b. Jabal (RA) said, “Seek knowledge, for seeking it for the sake of Allah is a sign of consciousness of Allah, acquiring it is an act of worship, studying it is a glorification, and searching for it is jihad.
- Al Maghrib Institute class, “Behind the Scenes: An In Depth Study of The Spiritual Practices of the Best Generations” Taught by Shaykh Omar Suleiman.
- Source for Hadith & Qu’ran