Sunday, 17 November 2013

Unfortunate Scholars

Assalamu'alaikum wa rahmatullah

Knowledge is important for human-being. Human-being could be civilized and reaching success through knowledge seeking and sciences. The noble prophet Muhammad s.a.w mentions, "Seeking knowledge is obligatory over each Muslim". Obligatory knowledge here refers to important sciences pertaining the relation of an individual with his Creator such as monotheism, physical and spiritual worship together with the morality. Later, communal sciences pertaining the relations between an individual with his society such as finance, working ethics, matrimonial and criminology.

Definition of Obligatory Knowledge

Ibn al-Qayyim proposes that 'obligatory knowledge' is related to the pillars of the faith, Islamic jurisprudence on legal and illegal matters and the social sciences.

Imam al-Ghazali defines that 'obligatory knowledge' refers to gnosis which is the knowledge about the God the Highest, spiritual worship such as sincerity, devotion and dependency only to the God the Highest and jurisprudence sciences.

Islam emphasizes greatly on knowledge and those who are knowledgeable as what has been mentioned in the Glorious Quran. Says the God the Highest which means, "And among people and moving creatures and grazing livestock are various colors similarly. Only those fear the God the Highest, from among His servants, who have knowledge. Indeed, the God is Exalted in Might and Most Forgiving" (Surah Faathir 35:28).

Division of Unfortunate Scholars

Scholars of religion, the righteous and ascetics are those people who gives their attention to the fullest to knowledge and science since it is the essence of worship and the basis of obedience to devote their life for the God the Highest. However, there are also those who were deflected where Abu Hamid al-Ghazali has divided them into six groups of people......

a) A person who feels that he possess the gnosis which enables him to see the God the Highest with his heart, thus assuming that his self is close to the God the Highest.

While he only knows His attributes and Names which he listens only from the chanting. It could also make them confuse and deviated. With all of these, he thought that he already has the highest knowledge among the nations from the alpha to the omega. He looks down on the religious scholars, jurists, exegesis compilers, hadith researchers and even more, he looks at the public just like looking at the cattle.  

b) A person whose tendency is more to the physical science and avoiding the spiritual science. He is proud with it and think exceedingly that he has a place at Him.

He assumes that he is free from the torment and bitterness of the God the Highest with his one-sided tendency in seeking the knowledge. He believes that he could become a savior to others and his sins will not be retaliated. These are dangerous assumptions that will rise for this type of person.

c) A person who never practice with his knowledge. Knowing everything means nothing if it is not accompanied with practices. There is of no use if one knows a science or method of worship but never practicing it.

Prophet Muhammad s.a.w mentions, "The God the Highest never look at your appearance nor your luxury but He is looking at your deeds and heart".

In the book titled "A Warning to the Negligent" (Ar. Tanbeeh al-Ghafileen), the noble prophet Jesus a.s was quoted as saying, "Anyone who knows (knowledgeable) and later practicing and teaching the knowledge to others, thus he is the person mentioned as the greatest in the realm of angels".

Indeed, noble angels are far of these three things:

1. Evil and hypocrite religious scholar who preaches to others but never practicing what he preaches.

2. Graveyard of treacherous people which is adorned with structures made of bricks and cements.

3. Carving of treacherous people's name on their gravestones.

Abu Amru Abdul Rahman bin Muhammad al-Auza'i of Damascus said, "Whoever perform whatever that he knows, he will achieve the success in whatever he does not know before".

Sufyan al-Thawri says, "Knowledge is in the first, silence. The second, listening and observing. The third, recalling. The fourth, practicing. The fifth, propagating it".

d) A person who spends all his time to clean himself from impurities and too much dwelling in it and he keeps looking for his own flaws looking at the tricks of "self" until it becomes his daily dealings.

He is too meticulous and too ritualistic until he feels that this is shameful. That is hideous and so on. This kind of person is the same with the person in the condition where he always imagine and reckoning that to perform the pilgrimage to Holy Mecca is too dangerous and later he ends up with not performing it at all, na'udhubillahi min dhaalik.

e) A person who thinks that he has already fulfilled the obligation to study by just attending lectures and sciences recital.

He makes this as his common habit and assuming that listening is just enough for him. He is not practicing whatever that he listens in the lectures since he is qualified for the meritorious deeds of listening and attending the lecture ceremonies.

f) A person who study just because he wanted to have the fame, to get the name, position and making fortune out of it.

His knowledge will bring no benefit to him. His dealings will be of no success and he receives no gain. Noble prophet Muhammad s.a.w says, "Whoever studies the knowledge with the intention to compete among the scholars, to show efforts to the ignorant or to get attention of public thus the hell is his place of return!".


I would like to highlight here as a part of our discussion... Well, a discussion with my self because this is a serious warning to my self!! That we have to give the attention to the key words such as, "heart", "feel", "thought", "assume" and "intention". All of these are related to our faculties of mind that manifest from our astral body such as the mind, memory, intellect and ego. These are more to philosophical findings but is still useful to understand one self. Many people still cannot understand these and I tried so hard to tell them even I was almost in conflicts with people around but it is still a failure. So, that is why I choose to stay in silence and observe but not giving up. I am not giving anything which I cannot practice because it is against the principle taught to us.... May the God the Highest forgives us our errors and sins, amin...... Only He knows the best...  

Sealed with prayers for mercy, peace and love, amin!  

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