Important Guidance for New/Aspiring Students of Knowledge

Discussion in 'Islamic Education and Studies' started by justabro, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

    Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatullah

    In sha Allah, I intend to devote this thread to providing direction for new or aspiring students of knowledge, as I've realized for quite some time that most of our young Tullab al-Ilm or aspiring Tullab lack direction and guidance. We have seen the fruits of this in the results that have been produced over the years. In large part, the students who have studied in Saudi universities or elsewhere have come out without a proper foundation and often times with strange ideas that they have then promoted, spreading confusion and sometimes causing controversy. Madkhalism is just one example of that, and it's certainly not the only one.

    One part of the problem is that young students tend to focus on learning certain details of certain fashionable issues that are 'hot topics' of the moment, while they neglect learning the fundamentals.

    Basically, my goal is to give advice (and I hope HH, AZ, Abu_Abdallah and others will pitch in as well, in sha Allah) about how to study, what to study, and answer questions.

    I'm sure there are other aspects to this problem that need to be addressed that are slipping my mind right now or will come to light as the discussion develops, in sha Allah.

    For starters, for those who can read Arabic, I highly recommend reading this book by Abu Fihr al-Salafi. He has alot of excellent advices about Talab in general and programs of study for specific fields. The only disclaimer: his advice on what to study for Fiqh and Usul is not very good and I'm unimpressed with it, but otherwise, his recommendations are very good, particularly his recommendations on Aqidah.
  2. Ismail Ibrahim

    Ismail Ibrahim Formerly Harris Hammam

    To get out from being within the scope of a layman to a beginner student of knowledge [as quickly as possible], the method was well explained professionally by Ustadh Shakur Rehman in the Tayyibun Annual Conference of 2010, in East London Mosque, on a Sunday a few weeks prior to Ramadan. [I've forgotten whether he talked about Arabic though - read on]

    Arabic language is a must. By Arabic, I'm not talking about those wishy washy Arabic courses. For the Arabic of the Kitab and Sunnah when you are not in an Arabic environment, nothing beats the traditional approach. For that, you need a traditional teacher with innovative modern methods (you don't want a way-too-old traditional teacher who would hamper progress). Nothing beats a face-to-face experience. Ebrahim College in East London is a good example as well. But...

    Though I have not personally participated, but the hype surrounding Maulana Yusuf Mullan's online course ('Instructor' on Sunniforum) is supposed to be great; it would be no surprise to me if it is.

    Make no mistake about it: if the Darul Uloom style of teaching Arabic can be optimised and tailored for non-Darul Uloom students at a mass level, that would be of a huge benefit to the Ummah. I would really love it if I could get the chance to share my Arabic knowledge that way and test out its benefits, physically or online.

    A really, really nice thread.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2012
  3. Abu Ray Ray

    Abu Ray Ray New Member

    Ustadh HH, Have you got a link for ustadh shakur rehman talk?
  4. Ismail Ibrahim

    Ismail Ibrahim Formerly Harris Hammam

    AH/HP, can either of you grab hold of it?
  5. Abdullah11

    Abdullah11 A wannabe neologist

    Jazak Allahu khairan bro justabro. What do you think of bakr abu zayd's book on ilm?
  6. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

  7. Hamza Patterson

    Hamza Patterson Proud Geek

    If Tayyibun have released it then it should be pretty easy to upload or share the link, however if they haven't I would need to ask them
  8. Abu Najaax

    Abu Najaax Well-Known Member

    Assalamu aleykum, Justabro could you please expand on Sh. Bakr's (rahimahullah) statement:


    From your observations is this one of the great pitfalls when a person starts to study ?
    Aboo Shayba likes this.
  9. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

    It is the reason why the average salafi is a mujtahid in about 10 or so issues, but probably wouldn't know basics of Fiqh, Aqidah, Tafsir, etc.
  10. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

    I should add, that typically the ijtihad on about 5 or so of those 10 issues will be some disaster like "women can't trim their facial hair till it reaches fist-length" and other such gems.
  11. Aboo Shayba


    Pants are haram.
  12. Muhandis

    Muhandis New Member

    Brilliant thread...May Allah accept.

    Please keep this updated regularly...
  13. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

    Obviously, the first thing one needs to learn is Arabic, but I learned Arabic on my own, and with a good bit of trial and error in terms of methods, so I would prefer if someone else (like HH) share their suggestions first in some detail, before pitching in my own two cents.

    Aside from that, the most important thing you need to do is to work on memorizing Qur'an with correct tajwid. This is the foundation of Ilm. If you can, try and memorize or learn the definitions of the words of the Qur'an as you memorize. An ideal book for this purpose is al-Siraj fi Gharib al-Qur'an, by al-Khudayri:

    السراج في بيان غريب القرآن - المكتبة الوقفية للكتب المصورة PDF

    Another suitable work if that is not available is Tafsir Kalimat al-Qur'an by Hasnayn Makhluf. When you finish this, you will have a basic understanding of the Qur'an that you can build on.

    During this stage, depending on how good your Arabic is, you should also try perusing a short, easy Tafsir as well to complete your foundation in understanding the meanings of the Qur'an. The preferred Tafsir is al-Tafsir al-Muyassar, published by the King Fahd Complex for printing Masahif. If you choose another Tafsir, try to choose something that is short and precise.

    In sha Allah, next we will discuss studying Fiqh. However, before we get into that, a disclaimer: my knowledge and experience is limited to the Hanbali Madhab. If someone is interested in studying another Madhab, then they should refer to those who have experience in it. If you have not chosen one yet, and are considering your options still, try and read up on the madhabs, their history, their principles, etc. and see which of the Four you find appeals to you. This is something I wrote some years back discussing some of the virtues of Shafi'i and Ahmad:

    This is a brief introduction to the Hanbali Madhab (includes a link to AZ's article on the Imam and Madhab):

    For those who are interested in studying Hanbali Fiqh, this will be addressed in detail in sha Allah in the next post. For now, let me say, if you have chosen to go down this course, you should start familiarizing yourself with the madhab as you begin your studies. Two books are critical for that purpose, and are a must for every Hanbali student's library, the Madkhal of ibn Badran and that of Bakr Abu Zayd:

    المدخل إلى مذهب الإمام أحمد بن حنبل (ت: التركي) - المكتبة الوقفية للكتب المصورة PDF
    المدخل المفصل لمذهب الإمام أحمد - المكتبة الوقفية للكتب المصورة PDF

    Sh. Abdullah al-Turki's المذهب الحنبلي is also very important, and completes the previous two titles:

    Ibn Badran's overview of the Hanbali Madhab's Usul in his Madkhal is useful as well, but probably will not be suitable for a beginner. Otherwise, it is an excellent reference that you should start reading from now. Familiarize yourself with these two books. They will be like a map guiding you on your journey through the madhab.

    More to come, in sha Allah
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2012
  14. Soul

    Soul Banned

  15. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

    I take it you've read the links?
  16. justabro

    justabro Salafi (Retd.)

  17. Soul

    Soul Banned

    No sorry I didn't but I was just saying something

    like people learn knowledge to act upon it right?

    and then they have to be really good people right?

    and then they have to teach other people right?

    and then they help others

    (and most of my post are just mere comments whatever I feel like saying
    so please excuse me...)
    justabro likes this.
  18. AdamSami

    AdamSami Well-Known Member

    The inofficial leader of the 'salafi' youth here in sweden actually said that to me more or less. That my clothes are the clothes of the kuffar yet I dare to oppose the leaders in the middle east.
    Abu'l 'Eyse and Ibn Nabih like this.
  19. Abu Abdul-Barr

    Abu Abdul-Barr Active Member

  20. punjabi

    punjabi New Member

    i am really interested in seeing how darul uloom's teach arabic, most darul uloom's are in non arab countries , i.e pakistan india, bangladesh, uk, ect......i have met many daru uloom grads who are strong in arabic, while others who are not, i wonder why? also how do these instituions keep a high standard of arabic in a non arabic speaking country?

Share This Page