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بسم الله الرحمان الرحيم

السلام عليكم و رحمة الله و بركاته

الحمد الله

Allah سبحانه و تعالى says in Surat Al A’raaf,


وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ ۖ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَّا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

“And surely, We have created many of the jinns and mankind for Hell. They have hearts wherewith they understand not, they have eyes wherewith they see not, and they have ears wherewith they hear not (the truth). They are like cattle, nay even more astray; those! They are the heedless ones.”[1]

Out of His fairness, Allah سبحانه و تعالى describes to us the heedless people so we can take guidance and leave the wrong path we are upon currently towards Siraat Al Mustaqeem.

Al Hasan, Al Suddi, Mujahid & ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas رضي الله عنهم said regarding the word ذَرَأْنَا that it means “We Created.”[2] We is used for Allah سبحانه و تعالى as in a royal ‘We’ not a plural ‘We’


وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ

Al Haafidh Ibn Kathir رحمه الله wrote in his tafsir explaining this phrase, “We made a share in the Fire.”


كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالإِنْسِ

He then continues, “We prepared them for it by their performance of the deeds of its people. When Allah سبحانه و تعالى intended to create the creation, He knew what their work will be before they existed. He wrote all this in a Book, kept with Him, fifty thousand years before He created the heavens and earth. As Imam Muslim رحمه الله has recorded a hadith Messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم saying, “Verily, Allah decided the destination and due measurement of the creation fifty thousand years before He created the heavens and earth, and His Throne was over the water.” [3]


لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا

Then Allah سبحانه و تعالى describes the people from amongst the Jinn and Humans he has created for Jahannam starting off by mention their condition of their hearts as Rasul Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم said as a part of a longer hadith,

“…Beware, in the body there is a flesh; if it is sound, the whole body is sound, and if it is corrupt, the whole body is corrupt, and behold, it is the heart.”[4]

Al Haafidh Ibn Hajr Al ‘Asqalaani رحمه الله said, “The heart has been singled out for this because it is the leader of the body, and through the purification of the leader the subjects become purified, and with his corruption, they become corrupted.”[5]

As for the Tafsir of the ayah, Imam Al Tabari رحمه الله says, “These people are those who are created for Jahannam from His creation; who do not ponder with it (i.e. the heart) the ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى nor contemplate the proofs of His Oneness nor do they think over the arguments proving His Messengers عليهم صلاة و السلام. However, they do know the Oneness of their Lord سبحانه و تعالى and they are acquainted with the reality of Prophet Hood of the Prophets عليهم صلاة و السلام. Thus, our Lord سبحانه و تعالى has described them with not understanding with it (i.e. heart) because of their turning away from the Truth and forsaking of their pondering over truthfulness of success and extent of thanklessness.”[6]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله said, “Because they don’t benefit from it (what is revealed) and they do not contemplate upon the rewards nor fear the punishments.”[7]

Mujahid bin Jabr رحمه الله said, “They don’t understand with it (i.e. heart) the affairs of hereafter.”[8]

Imam Al Baghawi رحمه الله writes, “They don’t realise good and guidance.”[9]

This phrase of the ayah talks about those people who have no interest in gaining the knowledge of the Deen because when they are told to remember Allah سبحانه و تعالى and learn about His Oneness and study the Messengers عليهم صلاة و السلام, they refuse to do so and prefer to remain ignorant. Thus, when they are reminded of the signs pointing to the Oneness of Allah سبحانه و تعالى, they refuse to know them even though they believe in them. And since they have no knowledge, they lack the fear of Jahannam and love of Jannah.

Then Allah سبحانه و تعالى continues,


وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا

It is noted from the Tafasir that this section of the ayah has similar meaning to the previous one but in addition the scholars write that they (the people mentioned in this ayah) do not see the Truth. [10]


وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَّا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا

Imams Al Tabari , Al Baghawi & Al Shawkani رحمهم الله say regarding this verse, “The Book of Allah, rather than thinking and contemplating about them, they turn away from them.” [11]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله writes regarding the verse, “Admonish.”

Even though these people hear the ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى, they do not contemplate and think over it rather they turn away from them.


أُولَـٰئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ ۚ أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

Mujahid رحمه الله said regarding this, “(After mentioning the other characteristics) then he made their mention like the cattle then made them even worse than cattle and then finally mentioned that they are the heedless ones.”[12]

Imam Al Qurtubi رحمه الله says, “Because they are not guided towards the rewards thus they are like cattle whose intention is to just eat and drink. But they (the people) are more misguided since the cattle can at least understand its benefit and harm and obeys its owner but they are even opposite of that. They forsake contemplation (of ayaat of Allah سبحانه و تعالى) and turn away from Paradise and Hell.”[13]

The benefit of the people lie in learning the ‘Aqeedah of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama‘ah and fundamentals of Islam, but there are some heedless people who do not understand this importance of this and thus are more misguided that cattle who at least comprehend their benefit and loss whereas these people do not. Allah سبحانه و تعالى has named the Qur’an as Al Furqan which means a criterion that distinguishes between the Truth and falsehood. If this criterion is not recited and studied, then it is a great possibility one would fall into actions that are forbidden in the Shari‘ah of Rasul Allah صلى الله عليه و سلم as one of the poets said,


عَرَفْتُ شَرْ لَا لِشَرْ **** لَكِنْ تُلَا فِيْهِ

وَ مَنْ لَا يَعْرِفُ شَرْ**** جَدِيْر أَنْ يَقَعَ فِيْهِ

“I learned evil not to indulge in it,
rather to abstain from it,
and whoever does not know what evil is,
it is likely that he will fall into it.”

May Allah سبحانه و تعالى make us amongst those who benefit greatly from this ayah. Ameen

And Allah سبحانه و تعالى knows best.


[1] Surat Al A’raaf, ayah 179

[2] Tafsir Al Tabari

[3] Tafsir Ibn Kathir

[4] Sahih Al Bukhari & Sahih Muslim

[5] Diseases of the Hearts and its Cure’ compiler’s foreword

[6] Tafsir Al Tabari

[7] Tafsir Al Qurtubi

[8] Fath Al Qadeer

[9] Tafsir Al Baghawi

[10] Tafasir Al Tabari, Al Qurtubi, Al Fayruzabadi, Fath Al Qadeer

[11] Tafasir Al Tabari, Tafsir Al Baghawi & Fath Al Qadeer [the last 2 Imams write , “The Book of Allah,” or its like not the rest]

[12] Tafsir Al Tabari

[13] Tafsir Al Qurtubi

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The Command to Collate Knowledge

By al-Imaam fil-Hadith Ibn ‘Abdul Barr [1] رحمه الله


بسم الله الرحمان الرحيم

الحمد الله


It is narrated from Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه:
“On the day of the Conquest of Makkah the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم gave a Khutbah (sermon). After the Khutbah a man from
Yemen, Abu Shaamah, stood up and said, ‘O Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم write this Khutbah for me.’ The Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم later commanded some of his companions to write the khutbah for Abu Shaamah.”

Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه would say:
“From the (Ashaab) companions of the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم no one had more Ahadeeth than me except Abdullaah Ibn Amr, Abdullaah Ibn Amr would write them down and I would not.”

It is narrated from Abdullaah Ibn Amr رضي الله عنه:
“Whatever I would hear from the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم I would write it down but Quraysh prohibited me. They would say do not do this because the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم also gets angry sometimes. So upon this I stopped writing. Then one day I mentioned this to the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم, he pointed to his mouth with his index finger and said: ‘Write because I swear by him in whose hand my soul is in, nothing comes out of this mouth except the Haqq (truth).’

Abu Hudhayfah رضي الله عنه (d.64H) mentioned:
“I questioned the Leader of the believers Ali Ibn Abi Talib: ‘Is there anything specific written with the house of the Messenger of Allaah from the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم apart from the Qur’aan.’
He replied: “No! I swear by Allaah, the one who put power in the wheat grain and created it, we have nothing. And Allaah may grant a specific understanding to someone. Yes there is this paper.”
I asked: ‘what is in this paper?’
He replied: ‘The freedom of a prisoner and not to kill a Muslim for a disbeliever.'”

It is proven from the Hadeeth that the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم had rulings relating to Sadaqah, obligations and the sunnah written and passed onto Amr Ibn Hazm. [2]

It is narrated from Abu Ja’afar Muhammad Ibn Ali:
“From the Messenger of Allaah’s صلى الله عليه و سلم sword carrier we found a piece of paper on which it said, ‘The one who shows the blind person the wrong path is cursed, the thief of the land is cursed and the one who does not think of the favours upon him is cursed.’

Abdullaah Ibn Amr رضي الله عنه (d.65H) would say:
“I like two things that life has only installed for me: the first is the Saadqah that I wrote from the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم and the second is “Waht”, the land which my father Amr Ibn Aas gave in charity.”

It is narrated from Anas Ibn Maalik رضي الله عنه (d.92H) that the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم said:
“Write knowledge into books.”
A similar statement has been reported from Umar Ibn al-Khattab رضي الله عنه.

It is the statement of Ma’an that:
“Abdur Rahmaan showed him a writing and he swore, saying that it was written by the hands of his father Abdullaah Ibn Mas’ood رضي الله عنه.”

It is the saying of Dhihaak:
“When you hear something then write it down, if you do not find anything [to write on], then even on a wall.”

Sa’id Ibn Jubair (d.95H) said:
“Whenever I was on journey with Ibn Abbaas رضي الله عنه I would write everything I would hear from him on a wooden plate and I would copy it on my return.”

It is the saying of Abu Qalaabah:
“Writing is better than forgetting.”

Abu Maleeh would say,
“There is objection on our books whereas Allaah سبخانه و تعالى says: ‘The knowledge about it is with my Lord.’

Abdul Azeez Ibn Muhammad Daarwardee said:
“Ibn Shihaab (Zuhree d.124H) was the first person to compile the Hadeeth.”

Abuz-Zeena said:
“We only used to write about the Ahkaam (rulings), Halaal (Lawful) and Haraam (unlawful) but Ibn Shihaab would write everything, later we found out he had the most knowledge.”

It is the statement of Mu’aawiyah Ibn Qurrah:
“The one who does not write, then do not consider him an Aalim (scholar).”

It is narrated concerning Hasan al-Basree (d.110H) that:
“He would not see anything wrong in writing the knowledge, but rather the people would write the lectures he would deliver on Tafseer.”

This saying of Hasan has been mentioned by Aa’maash:
“We had books that we would look at the same time.”

It is the statement of Khaleel Ibn Ahmad (d.170H):
“Whatever you write make it your Bait al-Maal (wealth) and that which you have gathered in your hearts then spend it.”

Hishaam said:
“My father Urwah’s books were burnt on the day of Hurrah.” Later he would say: “I wish those books remained with me rather than this wealth and money.”

Ishaaq Ibn Mansoor said:
“I asked Imaam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal whether the writing of knowledge was disliked.” He replied: “Some have disliked it and some have said it is permissible.” I said: “If knowledge was not compiled then it would have been wasted.” He said: “Without doubt, if knowledge was not written then what would we be.”

It is narrated from Sa’eed Ibn Ibraaheem that:
“Umar Ibn Abdul Azeez gave us an order to compile the Sunnah, we compiled many books and he sent a copy of each to every country in his state.”

Imaam az-Zuhree (d.124H) would say:
“We disliked the writing of knowledge up until the Ruler left us no choice. Then this became our opinion that no Muslim shall be stopped from writing.”

And it is the saying of Khaleel Ibn Ahmad (d.170H) that:
“Whatever I heard, I wrote it and whatever I wrote, I learnt and whatever I learnt, I benefited from.”

Footnotes

[1] The Imaam of Hadeeth Abu Umar Yusuf Ibn Abdullaah Ibn Abdul Barr was from the city of Knowledge, Qurtubaa (Cordoba). He was born in 368H. He progressed the stages of knowledge and became the Imaam of his time. He also served time as a Qaadhi and died in the year 463H. He wrote many books, some of them were lost and some still remain. Apart from Tamheed the rest have not yet been printed. From his books, a high position is given to Jaami Bayaan al-Ilm Wa Fadlihee and al-Isteea’aab Fee Asma as-Sahabah.

[2]
When Amr Ibn Hazm رضي الله عنه was made Governor and sent to
Yemen, he was given written instructions and guidance. Not only did he protect the guidelines, he added 21 commands of the Messenger of Allaah صلى الله عليه و سلم and made it into the form of a book. [al-Wathaa’iq as-Siyaasah (p.105), Tabaree (p.104)]

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Aathaar on Knowledge

بسم الله الرحمان الرحيم

الحمد الله

Sufyaan Ath-Thawree رحمه الله: “The excellence of knowledge is due only to the fact that it causes a person to fear and obey Allaah, otherwise it is just like anything else.” [Related by ibn Rajab]

Al-Hasan al-Basree رحمه الله: “Whoever learns something in the name of Allaah, seeking that which is with Him, he will win. And whoever learns something for other than Allaah, he will not reach the goal, nor will his acquired knowledge bring him closer to Allaah.” [Related by Ibn ul Jawzee]

‘AbduLlah Ibn Mas’ud رضي الله عنه: “True knowledge is not measured in relationship to how much you memorize and then narrate, but rather, true knowledge is an expression of piety [protecting oneself from what Allaah prohibited and acting upon what He mandated].”Also, “Study and act upon what you learn.” [Related by Abu Na`eem]

‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud رضي الله عنه: Learn, so when you have learnt , then act.

Az-Zuhree رحمه الله: The action of one who acts and does not know will not be trusted by the people and the people will not be happy with the saying of an ‘aalim who does not act.

Sahl ibn ‘Abdullah al-Fustaani رحمه الله: All the people are intoxicated except the scholars and all the scholars are confused except whoever acts according to his knowledge.

Sahl ibn ‘Abdullah al-Fustaani رحمه الله: The world is foolishness and barren except the knowledge and all of knowledge is a proof against him except what is acted upon and all action is useless except with sincerity and sincerity is in great danger until sealed by it (the action).

Yusuf ibn al Hunain رحمه الله: With good manners you understand the knowledge and with knowledge your actions are corrected and with the actions wisdom is obtained and with wisdom you understand zuhud (renunciation) and granted the benefit of it and with zuhd comes abandoning the world and with abandoning the world comes longing for the Hereafter and with longing for the Hereafter the Pleasure of Allah ‘Azza wajal is obtained.

Maalik ibn Dinar رحمه الله: When a servant seeks knowledge for practise, his knowledge humbles him and when he seeks it for other than that it increases him in immorality and pride by it.

Abu Hurairah رضي الله عنه: The example of knowledge which is not acted upon is like wealth from which nothing is spent in the way of Allah ‘Azza wajal.

Abu Darda رضي الله عنه: I am not afraid that it will be said to me: “Oh ‘Uwaymir what have you learned?”, but I am more concerned that it will be said to me: “Oh ‘Uwaymir, what have you done with what you have learned!”

Umar ibn Abdul-Aziz رحمه الله: Whoever does not consider speech to be part of his act on will sin abundantly and whoever acts without knowledge will do more harm than good.

Maalik ibn Dinar رحمه الله: Indeed I found among the wise sayings: “There is no good for you to know what you do not know while you are not acting upon what you do know, because the likeness of that is as the likeness of a man who gathers firewood, so he ties up a bundle and tries to carry it but he is not able to, so he adds another one to it.

Ata رحمه الله reported : There was a youth who used to come to the Mother of the Believers رضي الله عنها from time to time and ask her and she would narrate to him. So one day he came to her and asked her, so she said: “Oh my son, have you acted yet upon what you have heard from me?” So he said: “No by Allah, Oh my mother “, so she said : ” Oh my son, then why do you seek increase in Allah’s proof against us and against you.”

Fudayl ibn ‘Iyyad رحمه الله: As for hadeeth, it is better that a man does not hear it than that he hears it and does not act upon it.

Sufyaan ath-Thawree رحمه الله: Would that I had not written down knowledge and would that I would be saved from my knowledge so that it would be even, neither against me nor for me.

Ash-Sha’bee رحمه الله: Indeed we are not the scholars but we have heard hadeeth so we have reported them. For the scholars are those who when they know, they act.

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بسم الله الرحمان الرحيم

الحمد الله

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