Islamic Education- Children Education 2008- Lesson (11- 36): The Importance of Intellectual Education
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of Creations, and Peace and blessings be upon our prophet Muhammad, the faithful and the honest.
 Oh, Allah, we know nothing but what You teach us. You are the All- Knower, the Wise. Oh Allah, teach us what is good for us, and benefit us from what You taught us, and increase our knowledge. Show us the righteous things as righteous and help us to do them, and show us the bad things as bad and help us to keep away from them.
  O Allah our Lord, lead us out from the depths of darkness and illusion, unto the lights of erudition and knowledge, and from the muddy shallows of lusts unto the heavens of Your Vicinity.

Education is the most crucial aspect of human beings

 Dear brothers, this is lesson No. 11 of the series Children Upbringing in Islam, and the topic today is The Intellectual Education. Actually, there are three sides of man's life: the mental, emotional and physical; the human mind needs intellectual nourishment, the human heart needs emotional nourishment, and the human body needs good nutrition.

 The most important side of the human being is the intellectual one, so whoever does not search for the truth (about life) and does not improve his cognitive power is granted by Allah the Almighty descends from human beings' highest rank to that of other creatures which definitely does not suit him.

 I would like to refer to some facts before I proceed with the main point. The non-living things have weight and three spatial dimensions, and occupy a space, but they cannot grow, whereas plants have weight and three spatial dimensions, and occupy a space and can grow. Thus, the difference between plants and non-living things is that plants grow while non-living things do not.

 When it comes to animals, they have weight and three spatial dimensions, occupy a space, and grow like plants. However, the difference between animals and plants is that animals can move while plants cannot. As for mankind, they have weight and three spatial dimensions, and they occupy a space like non-living things. Moreover, they grow like plants and move like animals, but what is the essential difference between animals and human beings? It is the ability to think.

 What distinguishes humans from other creatures is the power of thinking; Allah the Almighty has granted man mind in order to use its cognitive power while searching for the truth (about life), but if he does not use his mind, he lowers himself from the rank of human beings to that of other creatures which definitely does not suit him.

The three types of people in this world


  When you seek the Islamic knowledge, attend an Islamic lecture, search for the truth, read some books about Islam, attend an Islamic symposium or discussion, attend Friday Khutbah, ask Islamic scholars, try to find answers to your questions, think and reflect deeply, you confirm that you are an intellectual being.

 Actually, there is a huge difference between knowledge and ignorance.. Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "O son, there are three kinds of people: one kind is of those learned people who are highly versed in the ethics of truth and philosophy of religion, second is the kind of those who are acquiring the above knowledge and the third is that class of people who are foolish. They follow every pretender and accept every slogan, they have neither acquired any knowledge nor have they secured any support of firm and rational convictions. Beware Kamil that you will not be like anyone of them." Consider the following Nasheed (Islamic lyric) which touched my heart deeply:

The breeze of Your Love has a sweet fragrance
which brings life to hearts
Smart people are only those who get to know You
while others are uncivilized ignorant ones

* * *

 Actually, being uncivilized is quite unrelated to one's financial position, i.e. the fabulously wealthy person who owns a luxury vehicle and wears the most expensive clothes and perfume can be described as barbarian as long as he is neglectful of Allah the Almighty; as long as he builds his glory on someone else's destruction, deprives other people of security in order to ensure his own security, impoverishes others in order to collect his own wealth, and makes others suffer severe humiliation in order to build his own glory. Thus, there is a huge difference between the humane and the inhumane, and the real believer should be humane.

Getting to know Allah fills one's heart with happiness

 Dear brothers, no words can ever describe the happiness one feels when he gets to know Allah the Almighty, adheres to His Orders and Prohibitions, and performs acts of obedience. Let me tell you the following saying which I like to mention a lot; it is one of the sayings of Ibrahim Ibn Al-Adham, may Allah have mercy upon him, who used to be the king of Balkh, then he renounced his throne and became one of the most righteous Islamic scholars. He once said, "Had kings realized the overwhelming feeling of happiness we experience when we draw closer to Allah the Almighty, they would have fought us with swords for it."

 The overwhelming feeling of happiness and tranquility which the believer experiences when he gets closer to Allah the Almighty, and which is enough for all the inhabitants of a country, has nothing to do with the class he belongs to, his age or the place he was born in (whether in a city or in a country).

 What is faith? It is a very high level of education, morality and etiquette. In other words, the believer is very tactful; he maintains the etiquette of eating, drinking water, wearing clothes, going for a picnic, and meeting people, etc. He acquires this level from getting closer to Allah the Almighty and testing the sweetness of being close to Him.

Knowledge is the nutrition for mind

 Dear brothers, you should feed your mind with knowledge, i.e. you should be a knowledgeable scholar, an Islamic knowledge seeker, a listener, or a lover of knowledge and scholars, and you should not be the fifth case (i.e. do not be utterly ignorant of the truth) which makes you perish.

Smart people are only those who get to know You
while others are uncivilized ignorant ones
* * *

 The uncivilized man could be poor, rich or even knowledgeable. The uncivilized knowledgeable includes the one who invents evil weapons such as weapons of mass destruction, biological weapons, chemical weapons, weapons which cause killing piercing damage, explosive and incendiary bombs, deadly weapons, cluster bombs, thermonuclear bombs, neutron bombs which kill people and spare buildings, and other advanced weapons.

Smart people are only those who get to know You
while others are uncivilized ignorant ones
***

Everyone should seek Islamic knowledge in order to get to know Allah:

 Dear brothers, the subject of our lecture today is the intellectual education. Actually, the first word revealed from Allah the Almighty to the Prophet, peace be upon him, was 'Iqra' (Read). Allah the Almighty says:

(Read!…)

(Al-Alaq, 1).

 Isn't it? Allah the Almighty says, "Read!…", but what should one read?

 Dear brothers, the Noble Ayaat which follow the abovementioned Ayah have great meanings. Allah the Almighty says:

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists),)

(Al-Alaq, 1)

 Actually, the word "Read!" has a very wide meaning; "Read!" in order to get to know your Lord, "Read!" in order to believe in Him, " Read! " in order to get closer to Him, "Read!" in order to be saved, "Read!" in order to find true happiness. Also, "Read!" means seek the Islamic knowledge, "Read!" means learn about Islam, "Read!" means fulfill your mind's need of knowledge, "Read!" means listen to Islamic lectures, "Read!" means be a knowledgeable scholar, "Read!" means be a knowledge seeker, "Read!" means have a passion for learning (Islamic knowledge), and "Read!" means avoid knowledge which is unbeneficial, and so on.

 Once, I was traveling on an airplane, and it was a long flight. What really caught my attention was that all the passengers were engaged to reading books. At first sight I greatly admired them, but then I discovered that they were reading silly stories (about marital infidelity and the like) which is a waste of time in doing something that brings no benefit. You are supposed to "Read!" in order to increase your faith in Allah:

(…In the Name of your Lord Who has created (all that exists),)

(Al-Alaq, 1)


 This kind of reading is reading for the purpose of finding the truth and increasing faith. Thus, "Read!" means seek knowledge in order to deepen your faith, and motivate your child to read in order to strengthen his/her faith as well.

Kinds of beneficial reading:

1- Reading for the purpose of finding the truth and strengthening faith:


  I heard that in some Muslim countries, there are special endowments for the purpose of encouraging kids to read; they donate wonderful, meaningful, colorful and well-printed moral stories about the life of the noble companions in order to motivate kids to love reading, since reading is the best hobby ever. Furthermore, it is more important than making money.

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists),)

 The first kind of reading is to read for the purpose of finding the truth and strengthening your faith; we need to ask ourselves these questions: Have we reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth? Have we recited the Noble Qur'an? Have we read the Noble Sunnah? Have we read some Islamic books? Thus, "Read!" means you should read in order to learn; do you dedicate some of your time to seek Islamic knowledge? Do you attend Islamic lectures? Do you spend one hour or two hours each day on reading Islamic books or articles? Do you attend a meeting with a knowledgeable scholar in order to learn from him? "Read!" in order to increase your faith. Thus, this kind of beneficial reading is reading for the purpose of finding the truth and deepening your faith.

Human body is the closest sign to man that indicates Allah's Greatness:

 Allah the Almighty says:

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists),)

 The closet sign to you that reflects Allah's Greatness and draws you closer to Allah the Almighty is your body:

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists),)

 Allah the Almighty says:

(Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).)

(Al-Alaq, 2)

 During sexual intercourse between spouses, 300 million sperms swim upstream on a quest to fertilize an egg which is as small as a salt atom that cannot be seen except with a microscope. Then only one sperm, which also cannot be seen with the naked eyes, fertilizes the egg; the sperm head consists of genetic substances coated with a thin membrane, so when the sperm reaches the ovule, this membrane gets torn, and that substance dissolves the hard outer layer of the egg, and the sperm succeeds in penetrating the egg, then the chromosomes carried by the sperm and egg come together, and the egg is officially fertilized. Allah the Almighty says:

(Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).)

 The fertilized egg divides again and again into 10.000 cells while its size remains the same. Then it is released, and it moves into the fallopian tube; the cilia help it move from the ovary to the uterus, and it continues dividing.

(Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).)

 Allah the Almighty says:

(…Then from a Nutfah (mixed drops of male and female sexual discharge i.e. offspring of Adam), then from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood) then from a little lump of flesh)

(Al-Hajj, 5)

 Then the bones of the fetus are formed, and after that they are covered with flesh, then the embryonic organs are formed. These organs include his head which contains his brain where there are 140 billion glial cells, whose function is still unknown. Also, at that stage his eyes are formed, and in the retina there are about 7 million cones and 100 million rods, and the optic nerve consists of 900.000 nerve fibers. As for the head, there are about 300.000 hairs; each hair has a vein, an artery, a nerve, a muscle, a sebaceous gland and a melanin-producing gland. Regarding man's stomach, it contains 35 million gastric glands which secrete digestive juice, and as for his heart, it pumps 8 cubic meters of blood each day; on average, the amount of blood which the heart pumps throughout man's life could fill the tallest skyscraper in the world. Man's organs also contain his tongue, teeth, esophagus, intestines, stomach, kidneys, lungs, heart, and so on.

One should read in order to strengthen his faith:

 Allah the Almighty says:

(Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).)

 Based on the aforementioned facts, the closet sign to you which indicates Allah's Greatness is the creation of your own human body. Have you ever asked yourself why there are no sensory nerves in the hair? That is because if there were some sensory nerves in the hair, you would be obliged to go to the hospital each time you need a haircut since hairdressing would have required anesthesia in order to have no pain. Thus, according to Allah's Deep Wisdom, there are no sensory nerves in the hair. In brief, you should reflect on the creation of your body; your hair, eyes, nose, ears, and so on…

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists),)

 You should read in order to increase your faith through getting used to pondering over everything. For example, think about your reaction when you hear the sound of a car coming from the right. In such a case, you pull over to the left, but have you ever asked yourself how does your brain determine the direction of the sound behind you, whether it comes from the right or the left? Actually, this ability is called "sound localization" which is based on the time difference of the sound reaching each ear. Your brain compares this difference, which is about 1/1620 of a second, and it tells you where the sound comes from. This is one of the signs which indicate Allah's Greatness. I repeat again, the first kind of reading is reading in order to increase your faith. Allah the Almighty says:

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists)* Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).)


 Allah has granted man the blessing of existence, bestowal and guidance:

 Allah the Almighty says:

(Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous,)

(Al-Alaq, 3)

 This second kind of reading aims at being grateful to Allah, Glorified and Exalted be He, who has granted you the blessing of existence; since He has created you, and the blessing of bestowal as He showers you with His endless Blessings, such as air, water, food, drink, your wife, and your children. Furthermore, He has subjugated the whole universe to man (in order to get closer to Allah when reflecting on its creation), like the heaves, the earth, seas, rivers, birds, planets, fruits, and so on. Thus, the second kind of reading is reading in order to show gratitude to Allah the Almighty for His Blessings.

 This first Ayah, "Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists)" indicates the first kind of reading, which is for the purpose of finding the truth and of deepening your faith. While the second Ayah, "Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous," refers to the second kind of reading which is reading in order to be grateful to Allah for the countless blessings He has bestowed upon you; the blessing of existence, the blessing of bestowal, and the blessing of guidance. Thus, you should ponder over the creation of the universe and over Allah's endless Favors. For example, you should ask yourself, who has made palatable and sweet after it was salty and bitter? Who has created the laws of physics such as evaporation? Who has made air hold water vapor? Who has created the law of distillation? Who has made gas turn into a liquid (i.e. condensation) Who has stored water in the ground (i.e. the groundwater) which forms springs when it emerges on the surface of the earth? He is Allah the Almighty.

2- Reading for the purpose of being grateful to Allah:

 I repeat the purpose of the second kind of reading: the purpose of reading in the second Ayah "Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous," is to appreciate Allah's Gifts. You can do that when you ponder over what you eat and drink. For instance, when you drink a glass of milk, ask yourself, where does milk come from? Is it manufactured in a factory that produces noise, smoke, or rubbish? Of course not, it is produced from the cow which eats grass. Is there any other way to turn grass into milk? Of course, there is not. Likewise, hens eat different types of food (weeds, grass, seeds, etc.), but it produces eggs. Some scholars said, "Two much closeness is veils man from Allah (i.e. the closest blessings to man are most likely taken for granted and are not properly appreciated)." Thus, you should contemplate the creation of everything around you, such as eggs, milk, etc. So, "Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous," means read in order to be grateful to Allah the Almighty.

 I would like to repeat again that the first kind of reading is reading in order to draw closer to Allah the Almighty through reflecting on the Signs which indicate His Greatness, while the other kind of reading is reading in order to show gratitude to Him for His Blessings.

 I would like to reflect on the creation of human body. Let us talk about the kidneys; they excrete a drop of urine every 20 seconds, which means kidneys excrete 3 drops per minute, 30 drops every 10 minutes, and so on, and the bladder collects and stores urine. If there were no bladder in the urinary system, we would have to wear diapers all the time. Who has made the bladder hold up urine for 7-8 hours to maintain human dignity?

 If you accustom yourself to pondering over the creation of your own human body, you will be face to face with Allah's Greatness which is indicated through His Signs, such as the bladder which holds up urine. These Divine Signs are manifested in the blood filtering system, the digestion system, the pancreas, the liver which has about 5.000 functions, the lungs; it has been estimated that the surface of the pulmonary alveoli is approximately 200 m2, the heart which is fully enclosed within the rib cage, the brain which is completely enclosed within the skull, the spinal cord which is enclosed within the vertebral column, the womb which is protected by the pelvis bones, the red blood cells which are made inside the bone marrow, and so on. Who has designed these most important organs to be enclosed within protective bones? He is Allah the Almighty.

 Thus, "Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists)," refers to the first kind of reading which aims at finding the truth and strengthening your faith, while "Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous," refers to the second kind of reading which is for the purpose of acknowledging the Blessings of Allah the Almighty.

3- Reading with submissiveness to the Divine Revelation:

 Allah the Almighty says:

(Who has taught (the writing) by the pen [the first person to write was Prophet Idrees (Enoch)]* Has taught man that which he knew not)

(Al-Alaq, 4-5)

 The third kind of reading is to be submissive to the Divine Revelation. Thus, we have three kinds of reading so far: the first kind of reading is reading for the purpose of finding the truth and increasing your faith. The second kind of reading is reading in order to be thankful and grateful to Allah the Almighty for His Blessings. The third kind is reading with submissiveness to the Divine Revelation; believing without any doubt in the unseen matters which are revealed to us in the Noble Qur'an and Sunnah and which are beyond the mind's power of perception. Allah the Almighty, Who has created the heavens and the earth, says:

(Verily, man (disbeliever) was created very impatient; * Irritable (discontented) when evil touches him; * And niggardly when good touches him; * Except those devoted to Salat (prayers))

(Al-Ma'arij, 19-22)

 Allah the Almighty informs you that you were created in order to enter Paradise which is as wide as the heavens and the earth. Furthermore, He tells you that this worldly life is an abode of trials, that its pleasures are transient, and that it is (Dunya:the worldly life) literally means the lowest not the highest. Also, Allah the Almighty tells you about everything which is beyond your mind's perception, and so the third kind of reading is reading in order to believe unquestionably in the Divine Revelation.

 Dear brothers, the first word of the Noble Qur'an revealed to the Prophet, peace be upon him, was "Read". As I've just mentioned, there are three kinds of reading; the first kind, reading in order to find the truth and to deepen your faith. The second kind is reading in order to be grateful to Allah the Almighty for the countless blessings He has bestowed upon you. The third kind of reading is reading with full submissiveness to the Divine Revelation; to the Noble Qur'an and Noble Sunnah which clarifies details of what is mentioned generally in the Noble Qur'an. In other words, first, reflect on the creation of the universe and the earth, second, think deeply upon the blessings of Allah the Almighty, and third ponder over the Noble Qur'an and the Noble Hadith of the Prophet, peace be upon him.

4- Reading for the purpose of being aggressive and tyrant:

 Nowadays, the whole world is suffering from the fourth kind of reading. Let me mention the four kinds of reading, the first three ones are very great. The first one is reading for the purpose of finding the truth and increasing faith, the second one is reading in order to be grateful to Allah the Almighty for His Blessings, and the third one is reading in order to show full submissiveness to the Divine Revelation (to believe without a doubt in the unseen matters which Allah the Almighty revealed in the Noble Qur'an and Sunnah). The last kind of reading is the one that is meant by man to be aggressive and tyrant. Allah the Almighty says:

(Nay! Verily, man does transgress all bounds (in disbelief and evil deed, etc.)* Because he considers himself self-sufficient.)

(Al-Alaq, 6-7)

 Man may enrich his mind with knowledge and hold a diploma of higher education. However, when this great knowledge results in the invention of weapons of mass destruction, and when the countries which possess such weapons impose their pornography culture and immorality on all other nations, then this kind of knowledge has absolutely catastrophic consequences.

Muslims' need for the fourth kind of reading only arises in case of self-defense:

 You may ask yourself, do Muslims need the fourth kind of knowledge? Yes, they do. Allah the Almighty says:

(And make ready against them all you can of power)

(Al-Anfal, 60)

 However, Muslims do not need the fourth kind of knowledge to perform acts of aggression, but rather they need it to defend themselves. One of my brothers in faith, who is Indian, told me that before Pakistan developed nuclear weapons, Muslims of India were under severe persecution, but after that, things dramatically changed. Thus, Muslim countries should be well-armed in order to prevent their enemies from threatening them. The proof of this point is mentioned in the following Noble Ayah in which Allah the Almighty says:

(And make ready against them all you can of power, including steeds of war (tanks, planes, missiles, artillery, etc.) to threaten the enemy of Allah and your enemy)

(Al-Anfal, 60)

 Actually, most of the problems in the Middle East are stirred in order to prevent a country (Iran) there from developing a nuclear weapon, right? Westerners claim that they are the only ones who have the right to develop and own nuclear weapons in order to perform acts of aggression against the entire civilized world.

Kinds of Jihad (fighting in Allah's Cause):

 It is well known that Jihad is of various kinds, such as Jihad An-Nafs (man's struggle against unlawful whims) which is the greatest Jihad, and Al-Jihad Ad-Da'awi, which is paying the hard effort to call people to Islam, etc. Allah the Almighty says:

(…But strive against them (by preaching) with the utmost endeavour, with it (the Qur'an).)

(Al-Furqan, 52)

 Also, there is another kind of Jihad which is Al-Jihad Al-Bina'i (the constructive Jihad i.e. paying the hard effort to build a strong Muslim society with regard to education, health system, military strength, etc.)

(…and prepared them what you can of power)

 Regrettably, Muslims paid no heed to the abovementioned Divine Order while their enemies have been preparing them what they can of power for the last 200 years, they took advantage of stability, they excelled in different industrial sectors, they make benefit from the economic prosperity, and they developed the most powerful weapons to dominate the world's affairs, then they imposed their pornography and immoral deviation on other nations.

'Ad people are a clear example of oppressors who read in order to be aggressive:

 Dear brothers, consider the following critical point carefully: Allah the almighty orders us to read, He says:

(Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists) * Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood). * Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous,, Who has taught (the writing) by the pen [the first person to write was Prophet Idrees (Enoch)]. * Has taught man that which he knew not.)

(Al-Alaq, 1-5)

 Then He says:

(Nay! Verily, man does transgress all bounds (in disbelief and evil deed, etc.) * Because he considers himself self-sufficient..)

(Al-Alaq, 6-7)

  When one becomes powerful, his foolishness may lead him to think that he is self-sufficient; that he is in no need of Allah the Almighty, while he completely forgets that he is always under Allah's Control. Like such a powerful man, 'Ad people are an obvious example of the oppressive powerful people who thought themselves in no need of Allah due to their enormous strength. They performed acts of aggression against others, they read (acquired knowledge) in order to show aggression and to exercise tyranny, and they excelled in all fields. Yet, Allah the Almighty says about them:

(Did you (O Muhammad (Peace be upon him)) not see (thought) how your Lord dealt with 'Ad (people)? * Who were very tall like lofty pillars* The like of which were not created in the land?)

(Al-Fajr, 6-8)

 They excelled in various fields, such as architecture:

(Do you build high palaces on every high place, while you do not live in them? * "And do you get for yourselves palaces (fine buildings) as if you will live therein for ever. * "And when you seize, seize you as tyrants?)

(Ash-Shu'ara', 128-130).

 They achieved architectural excellence, industrial excellence, military excellence, and technical excellence. Allah the Almighty says:

(Though they were intelligent.)

(Al-'Ankabut, 28)

'Ad people's high level of excellence made them self-conceited:

 As I have just mentioned, 'Ad people achieved four kinds of excellence. Allah the Almighty says:

(The like of which were not created in the land)

 Their excellence filled them with an overwhelming feeling of arrogance, haughtiness and superiority. The proof of that is mentioned in the following Ayah in which Allah the Almighty says:

(…and they said: "Who is mightier than us in strength?)

(Fussilat, 15)

 They achieved architectural excellence, industrial excellence, military excellence, and technical excellence which made them self-conceited.

(Who is mightier than us in strength?)

 Pay attention to the following fact: whenever Allah the Almighty mentioned in the Noble Qur'an that He destroyed some people, He mentioned that he had destroyed other people before them who were mightier in strength than them. However, when it comes to 'Ad people, Allah the Almighty says:

(See they not that Allah, Who created them was mightier in strength than them)

(Fussilat, 15)

 This means there were no other people mightier than them; no one was mightier in strength than them except Allah the Almighty. He mentioned in the Noble Qur'an that they did transgress beyond bounds not only in their own country but also in other countries, which can be called total tyranny.

The world powers extend their dominion over other nations by all means:

 In some cases, powerful counties go on with their greed to control not only their own people but also the people of other countries, so they interfere in the political affairs of other countries, and they seek to extend their dominion over other nations. Allah the Almighty says:

(Who did transgress beyond bounds in the lands (in the disobedience of Allah).)

(Al-Fajr, 11)

 The powerful countries transgress beyond bounds by bombing and using weapons of mass destruction. Allah the Almighty says:

(And made therein much mischief.)

(Al-Fajr, 12)

 Powerful countries spread moral delinquency through their porn films. Thus, they transgress the limits by bombing and do mischief by imposing their pornography and immoral deviation on other nations. Allah the Almighty says:

(So your Lord poured on them different kinds of severe torment. * Verily, your Lord is Ever Watchful (over them).

(Al-Fajr, 13-14)

 How did Allah the Almighty destroy 'Ad? He says:

(By a furious violent wind; * Which Allah imposed on them for seven nights and eight days in succession, so that you could see men lying overthrown (destroyed), as if they were hollow trunks of date-palms!)

(Al-Haqqah, 6-7)

 Allah the Almighty says:

(And that it is He (Allah) Who destroyed the former 'Ad (people),)

(An-Najm, 50).

 We can infer from the phrase, "the former 'Ad (people)," that there are latter 'Ad people, i.e. the countries who carry out acts of aggression against other nations.

Believing in Allah and the Last Day and preparing power make Muslim victorious:

 Dear brothers, as I have mentioned earlier, there are four kinds of reading (acquiring knowledge): first, reading for the purpose of finding the truth and increasing faith, second, reading in order to be thankful to Allah the Almighty for His Blessings, third, reading in order to show total submission to the Divine Revelation, and fourth reading in order to perform acts of aggression and tyranny. Actually, I hope what I am saying is clear to all of you; Muslims should be well-armed in order to prevent their enemies from performing acts of aggression against them

(…to threaten the enemy of Allah)

 Even though they may never use state-of-the-art weapons, Muslims should have these weapons to make their enemies fear them. Thus, Muslims will never be granted triumph over their enemies unless they use every possible means to achieve victory; having deep faith in Allah the Almighty which leads them to obey Him, strongly believing in the Hereafter which prevents them from doing harm to others, and making all available, not equivalent, preparation to meet their enemies. Allah the Almighty says:

(And make ready against them all you can of power)

 By Allah, the Only Deity to be worshipped, if we use these two means to achieve victory (if we have deep faith in Allah the Almighty which leads us to obey Him, and if we make all available preparation to meet our enemy), there will be a dramatic change in our situation; we will be granted victory over our enemies.

Knowledge and righteous deeds are the true criteria of superiority:

 Dear brothers, Islam attaches great importance to knowledge, and concerning this point, Allah the Almighty says:

(Say: "Are those who know equal to those who know not?")

(Az-Zumar, 9)

 Actually, the worldly standards of preference are wealth, beauty, high position, power, nobility, and honorable lineage, etc. while the only criteria of preference according to the Noble Qur'an are acquiring knowledge and performing righteous deeds.

 It was narrated that Al-Ahnaf Ibn Qais, one of At-Tabeen (the generation of Muslims who were born after the passing of the Prophet, peace be upon him, but who were contemporaries of the companions), was short, dark, and club-footed. He had inclined chin, bulging out cheeks and sunken eyes. There was no ugly attribute but he had a part of it. Nevertheless, he was the leader of his tribe. He was so beloved by his people to the extent that when he got angry, 100.000 people would unsheathe their swords to fight with him without even asking about the reason behind his anger. Also, he was so honorable to the point that if he knew that drinking water would damage his honor and reputation, he would never drink it. Thus, according to the Noble Qur'an, there are two standards of preference in the Sight of Allah the Almighty; first, acquiring knowledge as it is indicated in the following Ayah:

(Say: "Are those who know equal to those who know not?")

(Az-Zumar, 9)

 The second standard is performing righteous deeds,

(And for all, there will be degrees according to that which they did,)

(Al-Ahqaf, 19)

 This means the revival of every nation depends on these two aforementioned standards. Accordingly, the knowledge-seekers and those who perform righteous deeds should be held in high esteem.

Encouraging superior kids contributes to the revival of the Islamic nation:

 Dear brothers, Islam has given great importance to the process of seeking knowledge, since knowledge plays a crucial role in the awakening of our Ummah (Islamic nation.) Let me give you the following example in order to highlight the importance of knowledge: when Salah Al-Deen Al-Ayubi, may Allah have mercy upon his soul, wanted to face the combined might of Europe, he built up an army of well-educated soldiers since he knew that knowledge is power; he paid full attention to education and he established many schools, some of them were built is an avenue in Salhieh Street-/Damascus called Al-Madares (schools) Avenue which still exists today.

 Actually, people adopt many criteria for preference among them, while according to the Noble Qur'an, there are only two criteria of preference between people; religious knowledge and righteous deeds.

  In fact, parents are responsible for encouraging, supporting and giving presents to their gifted kids. Many parents ask their kids every day after school: how was your day at school? What did you learn today? How many lessons did you have today? And other similar questions which attach great importance to knowledge and education. On the other hand, when the main interest of the family is talking about food and drink or telling jokes, kids will underestimate the value of knowledge. Thus, encouraging and paying close attention to the talented kid who scores the highest marks at school is of great significance.

Knowledge is the key to the progress of any nation:

 Dear brothers, next lectures Insha-Allah we will continue this discussion since intellectual education is a very wide topic, so it requires many lectures to be covered.

 In conclusion, no nation can make any progress without knowledge. As the saying goes, "If you want to achieve success in this worldly life, you should acquire knowledge. If you want to achieve success in the Hereafter, you should acquire knowledge as well. If you want to be successful in them both, you should acquire knowledge." It was also said, "If you dedicate yourself fully to acquiring knowledge, you will become partly-educated person, while if you dedicate a small amount of your time to acquiring knowledge, you will learn nothing." Also, "A man will always be called a knowledgeable person as long as he continues seeking knowledge, but the moment he assumes he has enough knowledge, he becomes ignorant." Finally, "The knowledge-seeker prefers the Hereafter to this worldly life, and so he achieves success in both of them, whereas the seeker of the worldly pleasures prefers the worldly life to the Hereafter, so he loses them both."



Translation  : Rana Saraqbi
Auditing       : Kawthar Hajj Saleh