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Do not take Knowledge except from one who is known to be upon the Sunnah – Ahmad Ash-Shihhee

The following is posted from : Magnificent Points of Advice for those who have turned to the Way of the Salaf – Abu ‘Abdillaah Ahmad bin Muhammad Ash-Shihhee. This book was read to Allaamaah Rabee’ al-Madkhalee who gave some good instructions regarding it.

The Fourth Advice: Do not take Knowledge except from one who is known to be upon the Sunnah

Imaam Muhammad bin Sireen (rahimahullaah) said:

“Verily, this knowledge is Religion. So look into (i.e. investigate) whom you take your Religion from.”

And he said: “They (the Sahaabah) did not used to ask concerning the isnaad (chain of narration), but when the fitnah occurred, they began saying: ‘Name your men for us.’ So the People of the Sunnah would be looked to and so their hadeeth would be accepted. And the People of Innovation would be looked to and so their hadeeth would not be accepted.” [8]

So when one of these repentant individuals neglects these principles and guidelines, he becomes an open target for these misconceptions and he becomes a play object for many of those who (falsely) ascribe themselves to knowledge and Salafiyyah. So all it takes is for a person to claim knowledge or manifest his connection to the scholars from Ahlus-Sunnah, and you will find the repentant youth flocking around him, without thoroughly examining the reality of his condition and without looking into his history (i.e. background). But When he sees that his followers have become many and those who love him have become engrossed with him, he begins to reveal what he was concealing and what (way) he really inclined to. So now you see him calling to (holding) leadership in the field of Da’wah and pitching a tent for gathering everyone (i.e. regardless of beliefs). Or you see him doing other things that are in opposition to the principles of Ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah.

This is the point where the repentant individuals begin to become confused and divided into two or even three categories – those who agree, those who are against and those who are neutral. This confusion only comes about due to two things:

First: The repentant individual’s lack of devoting attention to beneficial knowledge, especially knowledge of the Fundamentals of Ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah, since Knowledge protects the one who has it from deviations.

Did you not see how knowledge protected Abu Bakrah (rady Alllaahu ‘anhu) in the Campaign of the Camel (Jamal),[9] when the people put the Mother of the Believers, ‘Aa’ishah (rady Allaahu ‘anhaa) forth (for the campaign). So what protected Abu Bakrah (rady Allaahu anhu) was a hadeeth he heard from Allaah’s Messenger, who said when news reached him of the death of Kisraa and the appointment of his daughter (as the leader): “A people that leave their affairs to be governed by a woman will never prosper.”

So When the fitnah occurred, Abu Bakrah remembered this hadeeth and it protected him from that, such that he said: “Allaah protected me with something that I heard from the Messenger of Allaah When Kisraa died. He (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: Who did they put to succeed her?’ They said: ‘Her daughter.’ So he (sall Allaahu alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘A people that leave their affairs to be governed by a woman Will never prosper.’ So when ‘Aa’ishah approached, i.e. Basrah, I remembered the statement of Allaah’s Messenger and so Allaah protected me by it.” [10]

Second: A lack or returning to the People Of Knowledge, Since the most deserving to be asked are the People of Knowledge and their students from Ahlus-Sunnah wal- Jamaa’ah, those who have knowledge of this individual whom the people seek to study under. so this person Should be enquired into:

Is he from the Salafee students of knowledge or not?

And did he undergo valid educational studies, Such that he has the right to be sought knowledge from or no?

SO if the answer is in the negative, then the issue comes to an end, all praise be to Allaah. And if the answer is positive, then he can be Studied under and benefited from, but without going to extremes in that matter. Rather, he should be given his due place and status.

This is an important point, which is: Differentiating between the enlightened Scholars, those Who are referred to in issues related to knowledge and current events, such as the two Imaams, Muhammad Naasir-ud-Deen Al-Albaanee and ‘AbduI-‘Azeez bin ‘Abdillaah bin Baaz (rahimahumaAllaa) and those enlightened scholars Who remained after them, such as the Mashaayikh, Muhammad bin Saalih Al-‘Uthaymeen, Saalih bin Fawzaan Al-Fawzaan, Rabee’ bin Haadee Al-Madkhalee, our Shaikh, Muqbil bin Haadee Al-Waadi’ee and others who are at their level amongst the people Of knowledge and fatwaa from AhlusSunnah waI-Jamaa’ah. So these individuals have their own level and position…

And between the prominent students of knowledge, whose knowIedge is known and whose following of the Sunnah is apparent by way of their books and the commendations of the scholars for them. SO these individuals also have their own level and position…

And between those who are less than them, from the students of knowledge, Whose Salafiyyah is Known and Whose ability to teach is recognized.

Footnotes :

[8] These last two narrations were reported by Imaam Muslim in his Introduction to his Saheeh

[9] Translator’s Note: The Campaign of the Camel occurred after the murder of Uthmaan, radyAlllaahu ‘anhu. when there was much turmoil amongst the Muslims. ‘Alee bin Abee Taalib radullaahu ‘anhu was given the bav’ah (oath of allegiance) as the succeeding Khaleefih and he decided to wait for the turmoil to simmer down before seeking revenge from the assassin of ‘Uthmaan. So the Muslims Were divided into those who were With him on this decision and those Who wanted justice for his murder right away. A group was formed to go and voice their case to ‘Alee and they rallied several of the Sahaabah including ‘Aa‘isha radhi Allaahu ‘anhaa‘ So she participated in the campaign riding on a camel (hence the name Jamal). When the parties at Basrah, a peaceful agreement was decided, yet due to some misunderstanding and confusion battle broke out and many lives were lost. And Allaah knows best.

[10] Reported by Al-Bukhaaree (7099), An-Nasaa‘ee (5403) and At-Tirmidhee (2365), and the wording mentioned here belongs to him.

Read the full e-Book: Magnificent Points of Advice for those who have turned to the Way of the Salaf – Abu ‘Abdillaah Ahmad bin Muhammad Ash-Shihhee


How to remove jealousy between the students of knowledge – Shaykh Sulayman Ar-Ruhaylee

How to remove jealousy between the students of knowledge
Explained by Shaykh Sulayman Ar-Ruhaylee حفظه الله…
Translated by Rasheed ibn Estes Barbee حفظه الله

Video Courtesy: Bilal Nahim

Students of knowledge going to the lessons of the mukhaalifoon (those who oppose the Truth), who do not show their mukhaalafaat in their lessons – Shaykh Ahmad Baazmool

“There are some students of knowledge who go to some of the mukhaalifoon (those who oppose the Truth);, but those mukhaalifoon, who give lessons, did not show theirmukhaalafaat in their lessons. So they continue with them (attending their lessons), using as an argument that they give lessons and that no mukhaalafah from them has appeared to him (in those lessons).” Clear? “So therefore he says: ‘I will attend them and I won’t leave them.’”

[Shaykh Ahmad Baazmool] :

There is no doubt that this is a false argument and a weakshubhah (doubt). This is because if it has been established that this person is from the mukhaalifoon, then whether he speaks with his falsehood or he doesn’t, it is obligatory upon you according to the Sharee‘ah that you do not go to him, so as to protect, preserve and guard your religion from hismukhaalafaat.

The second thing: it is obligatory upon you according to theSharee‘ah that you go to the Scholars of the Sunnah who are known with [adherence to] theSunnah.

The third thing: you are not able to distinguish between the Truth and the falsehood.

The fourth thing: we have previously read from the words of Shaykh al-Qayrawaanee – may Allaah have mercy upon him – when he clarified to you that thosemukhaalifoon, at first, will show you religion, love, truthfulness and knowledge, and they will command you with good and forbid you from evil, and then they will inject the poison into their words. So at first – so that they can lure you in – they will speak with words that you, they and everyone agrees with. Then, after that, he injects innovations, misguidance andmukhaalafaat into your mind and heart.

So why, O servant of Allaah? Why, O servant of Allaah? If you are truthful and you seek this knowledge for the sake of Allaah, then why don’t you seek it from its people, the people of Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic – and His Awliyaa’ (righteous, pious servants), the truthful Scholars, the people of Sunnah? Why do you go to those who displace words from their (right) places? Why do you go to those who play with the Sunnah of the Prophet -salla Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam- or play with the Salafee Manhaj? Why do you go to those who oppose the Truth?

You, in your affairs of the dunyaa: if a person opposes your family, your father or your tribe or he opposes you in an affair that you love and he follows other than your path, you would abandon him, you would hate him and you would be against him. Aren’t you ashamed? In the affairs of the dunyaa you do this, and in the affairs of your religion and in the affairs that Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic – loves, you follow a path in opposition to what Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic – wants? This is why we should be people of truthfulness, people of determination and people of Truth – we do not play or slacken. The religion is in need of men who, when they carry it and when they take control of it,  they move forward with it as serious people who glorify the truth, until they reach (i.e. meet) Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic.

And as al-Albaanee, may Allaah have mercy upon him, said in his famous and beautiful statement:

“The path to Allaah is long, and the important thing is not that you reach its end. But the important thing is that you die upon it!”

Meaning: don’t deviate to the right or to the left. Ok, so why should you die upon it? Because if you die upon it, and you are in its beginning, you will reach its end. As long as you are upon the Sunnah… If you were amukhaalif (one that opposes the Truth) and then Allaah conferred His Favour upon you by guiding you [to the Sunnah], and you followed it and died [upon it], then you will reach its end. Whereas if you did what you did from acts of obedience and good deeds, and you deviated from the path to the right or the left, you will not reach this long path and its end. For verily, Allaah has deprived the innovator from repentance (until he leaves his innovation).

Source:  Questions & Answers regarding Manhaj (Methodology) – Shaykh Ahmad Baazmool

Seeking Knowledge In Our Time and Seeking Knowledge In The Time That Was Before Us

Why the people who seek knowledge today don’t find the success with their knowledge and great benefit with their knowledge ?
The Student of Knowledge Today in Comparison to Those of Yesterday
Lecture by Shaykh Muhammed Ibn Haadee al-Madhkhaalee [hafidahullaahu ta’aala]

Translator’s Introduction:

“In shaa Allaahu ta’aala were giving a very praiseworthy lecture by Shaykh Muhammed Ibn Haadee al-Madhkhaalee [hafidahullaahu ta’aala] ad-Doctor from Jazaan. He did a beautiful lecture [about 2 weeks ago] entitled: Seeking Knowledge In Our Time & Seeking Knowledge In The Time That Was Before Us. After listening to this lecture; me, myself as the translator, I wanted to say that this has really changed my life, just since I heard this lecture. It had a tremendous effect in my life. So much so, that I just had to share it with the people, so that hopefully it will have an effect on our life or on your life, as it had an effect on my life. Or perhaps even have a greater effect on the lives of those who are listening, than it even had upon me and is continuously having upon me to this very moment right now; walhamdulillaah. The Shaykh – as a synopsis or the introduction – to what he talked about in his lecture, so you know what to look for, which is the reason why we entitled it online, the title we gave. Which is, the Shaykh he really talks about why the people who seek knowledge today don’t find the success with their knowledge and great benefit with their knowledge in their lives, and upon themselves, and everyone around them. As we seen, when knowledge was sought by those Imams, those `kibaar al-Ulamaa who just recently died & those that still remain, and the strong students of knowledge; how we see knowledge effect them. So in this lecture the Shaykh, he’s going to explain why we don’t find success. And he breaks it down to 4 main reasons. In which he’s going to give them first and then he’s going to explain each 4 of those reasons. And his lecture in Arabic was a total 1 hour & 10 minutes. With the questions and answers, it added another 33 minutes, but were not going to include, with this, the questions and answers. Were just going to include the lecture. And in shaa Allaahu ta’aala were going to translate this and hopefully with the success of Allaah subhannah wa ta’aala. And that Allaah, with the success lies & to Him I seek assistance and to Him I return to in repentance. So in shaa Allaahu ta’aala, this is basically what the Shaykh talked about…”

From the barriers of seeking knowledge : Taking knowledge from the Asaaghir (young) – By Shaykh Abdus Salaam bin Burgess

From the barriers of seeking knowledge … Taking knowledge from the Asaaghir (young)
By Shaykh Abdus Salaam bin Burgess(rahimahullaah)
Al-Binaa Publishing | Durham NC

Certainly there has appeared between the students of knowledge during this time, the taking of knowledge from those young in age. This phenomenon in reality is a cancerous disease and a chronic illness and it hinders the student of knowledge from his intent and turns him away the sound path that will connect him to knowledge.

That is because taking knowledge from those who are young in age; those who did not firmly establish their feet in knowledge, their beards did not become grey within it (they did not spend a long time with seeking knowledge) along with the presence of those older than them in age, whose feet are grounded, because of this the foundation of the beginner is weak. He is prevented from the benefit of the experience of the major scholars and attainment of their manners which is established by knowledge and time.

And from the evidences that give reason to this is the athar of Ibn Mas’ud (may Allaah be pleased with him) when he said:

“The people will not cease to be upon good as long as they take knowledge from their elders, their trusted and their scholars. If they (begin) taking knowledge from their sighaar and evil ones, then they are destroyed”

There is the affirmed Hadeeth on the authority of Abi Umayyah al Jamhee, that the Messenger of Allaah ملس و هيلع الله ىلص said:

“From the signs of the hour is when knowledge sought from al-asaagheer”

The people have differed in relation to the explanation of the word: “as-sighaar”.

There is some speech which Ibn Abdul Barr (may Allaah have Mercy on him) mentioned in al-Jaami’ and ash-shatibi (may Allaah have Mercy on him) mentioned in al-i’tisaam.

Ibn Qutaybah (may Allaah have mercy on him) took the view that as-sighaar are those who are young in age. And he said regarding the athar of Ibn Mas’ud:

“He intended that the people will not cease to be upon good as long as their scholars are mashaayakh (old) and that their scholars are not young (in age), because the shaykh (elderly) has left the pleasure of youth, his temper, his hastiness, his foolishness and he prefers practice and experience and nothing doubtful enters into his knowledge, his desires do not overcome him and he is not tempted by lust or greed. Shaytan does not cause him to fall (but) causes the young to. The one with age has dignity, honor and prestige.”

The young maybe will enter into some of these affairs that the elderly is safe from. If these affairs enter into him and he makes a ruling (then) he is destroyed and destroys others.

Ibn abdul Barr reported that Umar Ibn al-Khattaab (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:

“I knew when the uprightness of the people (was present) and when they became corrupted. When (an issue) of fiqh came from the young (in age) the elderly turned away from following them. And when (an issue) of fiqh came from the elderly; the young followed them and they were both guided.”

Ibn Abdul Barr also reported on the authority of Aboo Ahwas from Abdullah who said:

“Certainly you will always remain upon good as long as knowledge is found in your elderly and when knowledge is found in your young, the young will make the elderly appear foolish.”

In these two Athars are proofs for not taking knowledge from the young. Another besides which Ibn Qutaybah mentioned and it was fear of accepting knowledge if it came from the youth. At any rate, if its wording; as-sagheer is general (then) it is used in a way perceived and meaning (young in age).

This ruling is not without exception regarding the young in age, since a group from amongst the companions and taabi’een used to give fataawa and teach during their youth in the presence of those old in age. Certainly it is rare to find the likes of these individual so what about anyone after them. If they (the young) were present and their uprightness was known and their knowledge was examined and its firmness was apparent and no one from amongst the elders were found, then whatever knowledge they (the young) had with them was taken and safe from fitnah.

Hajjaaj bin Ar-Taah said:

“The people use to dislike that a man speak until grey was seen in his beard.”

The intent is not that knowledge of the young should be abandoned in the presence of the old; no! The intent is only to put people in their proper places. So the right of the intelligent young student is that he is benefited from in research, giving reminders and studies. As for putting him forward for giving rulings and questions being put forward to him the no! Certainly no! Because this will kill him and this is a fitna and deception.

Fudayl ibn Iyaad said:

“If you see a man gathering the people around him, then I say this (person) is crazy. What person gathers the people around him and does not like that they make good his speech”

He also said:

“It has reached me that the scholars of the past when they learned they acted, and when they acted they became busy,When they became busy they became lost (missing) and when they became lost they were sought (after) and when they were sought they fled “

So O seeker of knowledge if you desire knowledge from its source (fountain) then, here are the major scholars, those whose beards have become grey and bodies have become frail and strength have become weak (being exhausted) in knowledge and learning. Their commitments are before their lost and they bring out their treasures before they pass away (along) with them. (As) in the darkness of the night the Badr (moon) passes away.

A point of attention:

During these times the standards have been greatly blemished by the common people regarding properly estimating the scholars. So every individual who can give an eloquent speech, or a meaningful lecture, or a Friday sermon haphazardly becomes a scholar. He then becomes someone returned to for rulings and knowledge is taken from him. This is a painful and apparent affliction which its evil is airborne and it harms is circulated. When the connection of knowledge is (connected) to other than its people and when the affair (are in the hands) of other than its people, then look for the hour (Day of Judgment)

So the student must be warned of taking knowledge from these (types). Except if they are known to be from people who possess knowledge. Not everyone who has good expression is a scholar and not everyone who turns the people’s faces towards him with issues regarding the leaders of the Muslims or the mentioning of the death rate of aids and whatever is similarly to that is a scholar.

(Also) the meaning is not what has proceeded – as some understand it- ex. Not listening to them (the young in age) or not benefitting from their talks, No! The intent is only taking legislative knowledge from them and not raising them to the levels of the scholars and Allaah is the One Who gives success.

Translated by Abu Anas Atif Hasan
May Allaah make this a benefit for myself and the reader

Sincerity in Seeking Knowledge is a Condition that is Continuous – Shaykh Muhammad Baazmool


Sincerity in seeking knowledge is a condition that is continuous and not just preliminary:

What this means is that the student of knowledge should continually strive to implement sincerity in himself, and that he should not refrain from his studies due to the claim that he did not achieve sincerity.

Some scholars have provided the following definition for sincerity (ikhlaas): Ibn Jamaa’ah said:

“It means that one has a good intention when seeking knowledge, by intending through his studies to please Allaah, to act in accordance with what he learns, to revive the Sharee’ah (Islamic legislation), to illuminate his heart, to elucidate its (i.e. knowledge’s) hidden meanings; to get near to Allaah on the Day of Judgement, and to subject oneself to what Allaah has prepared for those who possess it, such as His Contentment and great virtue.”

Sufyaan Ath-Thawree, may Allaah have mercy on him, said:

“I did not try to rectify anything that was more difficult upon me than my intention.”

One should not intend, by his search for knowledge, to fulfil some worldly goal such as assuming leadership, gaining status and wealth, competing with colleagues, having people extol him, taking the front seat in a gathering, and so on, since he will be exchanging that which is better for that which is lower.

Abu Yoosuf, may Allaah have mercy on him, said:

“Intend Allaah through your (search for) knowledge, for indeed I never sat in a gathering of people in which I made it my intention to humble myself except that I didn’t leave from it until I had surpassed them. And I never sat in a gathering of people in which I made it my intention to surpass them, except that I didn’t leave from it until I was disgraced.

Knowledge is one of the many acts of worship and one of the many ways of gaining nearness to Allaah. So if one purifies his intention while seeking it, his deed will be accepted and purified. And its blessing will become complete. However, if he intends other than the sake of Allaah when seeking knowledge, his deed becomes nullified and wasted and his transaction is lost. Perhaps he may even miss out on these (worldly) objectives and never achieve any of them. So in this case, he will have failed in his objective and at the same time wasted his efforts.” [11]

* This principle entails several matters, the most important of which is:

The Devil enters into the hearts of some people desiring to turn them away from knowledge based on the argument that one should leave off seeking knowledge until he first purifies his intention. This is a plot, scheme and deception of the Devil. Rather, it is upon a Muslim to continue and persevere in his search for knowledge, and to constantly re-evaluate his intention, as Sufyaan Ath-Thawree said: “I did not try to rectify anything that was more difficult upon me than my intention.”

And this is Sufyaan we are talking about, so it applies even more so for those other than him!! Therefore, one should not make this into something that diverts him away from seeking knowledge.

When Hishaam Ad-Dustawaa’ee, may Allaah have mercy on him, said;

“By Allaah, I cannot (honestly) say that I ever went out one day to seek hadeeth for the sake of Allaah”, Adh- Dhahabee, may Allaah have mercy on him, commented on this saying: “By Allaah, me either!”

The Salaf would seek knowledge for the sake of Allaah, and so they became dignified and went on to become Imaams that were followed and looked up to by the people. And there were other people from among them who did not seek knowledge for the sake of Allaah at first, but yet they still attained the knowledge, then they woke up and examined themselves. And so the knowledge led them to have sincerity while on their path (of seeking knowledge). This becomes clearer in what was stated by Mujaahid and others: “We sought this knowledge while not having a big intention concerning it. Then Allaah granted us the intention (for it) afterward.”

Others would say: “We sought this knowledge for other than the sake of Allaah. But the knowledge refused that it sho usly rectify yourself, for indeed your knowledge – Allaah-willing – will guide you to make your intention sincerely for the sake of Allaah.

The Salaf would say: “We sought this knowledge for other than the sake of Allaah. But the knowledge refused that it should be sought except for the sake of Allaah.”


[11] Tadhkirat-us-Saami’ wal-Mutakallim (pg. 69-70)
[12] Siyar A’laam an-Nubalaa (7/152-153)
[13] Al-Bukhaaree reported this hadeeth in his Saheeh: Book of the Beginning of Revelation (no. 1) on the authority of Umar bin Al-Khattaab (radhi Allaahu anhu) and Muslim in his Saheeh: Book of Leadership (no. 1907)

Source : Laying the Foundations For Seeking Knowledge
Written by: Shaikh Muhammad bin ‘Umar bin Saalim Baazmool
Translated by: isma’eel alarcon, Published by

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