Knowledge is Light

All praise is due to Allah the Almighty and may His peace and blessings be upon his final Prophet and Messenger Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wasallam.

I recieved this a while back and thought it was quite interesting. The truth behind this matter is that when studying we focus so much on what is inside the book and we don’t really reflect on the meaning behind the little things.

Once a student sat with a teacher to read a text. As he opened the book, the teacher turned to him and said, “Have you ever asked yourself why the scholars use the word bāb (door) to title what you call chapters in English?”

The student responded, “Yes, but I did not give it a lot of thought.”

What followed was one of those special moments that can only happen when knowledge is passed from one heart to another:

“The word – bāb – is used because it reminds the student that he is entering a new realm. The realm of knowledge; that he is leaving a place of ignorance and entering into a place of understanding. Thus, he needs to have the proper character so the knowledge will touch his heart and mind.

“The word – bāb – is used because it reminds the student that, just as you enter a person’s home and are careful to make sure you have the right location, to knock with respect, to enter with humility, to sit gracefully, not complain about the food, if served, or the home, he has to seek knowledge, approach his teacher with humility and be satisfied with whatever is given to him, being thankful for what is given, polite and kind to his hosts.

“At the same time, it reminds the Shaykh to be gracious to his student, to treat him like his own, welcome him with a large heart and serve him the best he can, seeking God’s pleasure alone.

In short, this one word contains every Adab (etiquette) that Al-Ghazzali mentioned in the etiquette of the student and the etiquette of the teacher. Amazing! Truly amazing!!

“Finally, it reminds that student to be sincere, seeing God alone, since the bāb in the book reminds him of the doors (abwāb) of Paradise!

May you be rewarded for visiting my page and may we all benefit. Ameen.

All praise is due to Allah the at the beginning and at the end.

The Katibah.

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