The Need for Islamic Education According to the Qur'an and the Sunnah


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  • The Need for Islamic Education According to the Qur'an and the Sunnah

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    The Need
    For Islamic Education
    According To
    The Quran And Sunnah


    By


    Dr. Norlain bint
    Muhammad Dindang
     (Note: The Author is now using
    her real family name instead of her husband's family name (Mababaya) in
    conformity with Islamic value -- i.e., for woman to retain her own
    family name even after marriage.) 




    Contents


    I. The Great
    Teacher and Educator of Mankind


    II. The Importance of Education


    III. The Relevant Curriculum


    IV. The Need for Education Based on the Qur'an
    and the Sunnah


    V. Allâh Commends Those who are Endowed with
    Knowledge and Promises Them Everlasting Rewards


    VI. Prophet Muhammad
     (s.a.w.s.)
    Inspired Those who Acquire Knowledge of Islam


    VII. Non-Formal Education through
    Da’wah


    VIII. Supplications for Useful Knowledge


    IX. Conclusions and Recommendations




    I. The Great
    Teacher and Educator of Mankind


     Islâm stands
    as the most rational and precise religion that Allâh (swt) has given to
    the whole mankind. It gives importance to education, which is the
    process of  teaching and acquiring or learning knowledge (which
    includes beliefs, values, attitudes, manners and skills).  In
    fact,
    Allah sent Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) not only as His Final Messenger
    and the Seal of the Prophets (Qur’an, 33: 40)

    but also as
    the Great Teacher (Educator) to mankind. Our Rabb
    (Cherisher and Sustainer) sent him to teach humanity the Qur'an and the
    Sunnah:


    “Just
    as We have sent among you a messenger from yourselves reciting to you
    Our verses and purifying you and teaching you the Book and Wisdom
    (Prophet's Sunnah) and teaching you that which you did not
    know.”  (Qur’an, 2:151)


    “Certainly
    did Allah confer (great) favor upon the believers when He sent among
    them a Messenger from themselves, reciting to them His verses and
    purifying them and teaching them the Book (the Qur'an) and wisdom (the
    Sunnah) although they had been before in manifest error.”  
    (Qur’an, 3:164)


    “It
    is He who has sent among the unlettered a Messenger from themselves
    reciting to them His verses and purifying them and teaching them the
    Book (the Qur'an) and wisdom (the Sunnah) although they had been before
    in manifest error.”   (Qur’an, 62:2)


    The
    Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said that he was sent as a teacher.  He clearly
    said:


    “Allah
    has not sent me as a self-opinionated (messenger) nor to make others
    self-opinionated; but as

    a teacher and to
    facilitate things for people.” 
    (Muslim)


    In
    another authentic hadith, the Prophet (s.a.w.s.)
    stressed his having been sent as a teacher:


    Abdullah
    ibn Amir (r.a.) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) happened to
    pass by two groups (of Muslims) in the mosque and he said:

    Both of them
    are good, but one is superior to the other. One group is supplicating
    Allah and praying Him. If He so wills He will confer upon them and if
    He so wills He will withhold. So far as those who are acquiring the
    understanding of religion and its knowledge and are busy in teaching
    the ignorant, they are superior.
    Verily, I have been
    sent as a teacher.
    ”  He
    then sat down amongst them. (Tirmidhi, 257 and Darimi)


    As the
    universal teacher to mankind, Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) possesses an
    exalted standard of character (i.e., sublime morals) (68:4) and is an
    excellent example for us to follow. Allah (s.w.t.) says:


    “Indeed
    in Allah’s Messenger (Muhammad) you have an excellent example to follow
    for him who hopes in (meeting with) Allah and the Last Day, and
    remembers Allah much.”   (33:21)


    In an
    authentic
    Hadîth
    we read that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) himself said:


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said, 
    “I have been sent (as a Messenger) in the best of all generations of
    Adam’s offspring since the Creation.”  (Bukhari 4/757)


    Prophet
    Muhammad (s.a.w.s.), Allah's universal Messenger to all
    mankind
    (Qur’an, 34: 28), was the unlettered
    Prophet (Qur’an, 7: 157) who received the Message by inspiration
    (Qur’an, 6:145 and 29:45). He had come with the very Truth, and he
    confirmed the messages of the Messengers before him (Qur’an, 37: 37).
    He was Allah's Mercy for all creatures (21: 107) for he taught us the
    Qur'an and the Sunnah
    (62:2).


    It is
    significant to note that the first revelation that Allâh (swt) revealed
    to His Messenger
     (s.a.w.s.) for the guidance of mankind pertains to
    reading -- Surah Al-Iqra, which is Chapter 96 of the Qur'an.
    Iqra
    means "Read".  This is in line with the Prophet's
    universal role as the teacher (educator) to mankind.  Allah (swt)
    has commanded not only His Messenger
     (s.a.w.s.)

    who
    is our Great Teacher but also

    the
    whole mankind to read in His name, meaning to learn knowledge of Islam
    for His pleasure.  Part of the Surah Al-Iqra is translated
    as follows:


    “Read!
    In the name of your Rabb (Cherisher and Sustainer), Who created —
    created man, out of a leech-like clot: Read! And your Rabb is Most
    Bountiful. He Who taught (the use of) the Pen, taught man that which he
    knew not.”   (Qur'an, 96:1-5)


    When we
    follow the divine commandment to read,  we learn in the
    Qur’ân  that  aside from reading, Allâh commands us:  to
    know  (e.g., 2:194, 196, 203, 223, 235 and 14:52) to learn 
    (e.g., 6: 151, 9:122, 12:2, 22:46 and 54, 40:58 and 68:37), to
    understand (e.g., 2:44, 6:32, 7:169, 10:16, 11:51, 12:109, 21:10, 40:67,
    43:3, 47:24 and 57:17), to ponder  (4: 82 and
    23:68) or contemplate (38:29),
    and even to ask questions (i.e., 10:94 and 43:45).  To know,
    learn, understand, ponder or contemplate, as well as to ask questions
    constitute what we called the learning process in education. With
    Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) as Allah's universal teacher and the fact
    that Allah has enjoined us to learn Islam purely based on the Qur'an
    and the Sunnah as taught by His Great Messenger (s.a.w.s.), we see the
    educational aspect of Islam as a complete process of teaching and
    learning knowledge based on Allah's Divine Guidance. Allah is the One
    who bestows knowledge and wisdom to whom He pleases. Successful are
    those whom Allah gives knowledge and wisdom.  Allah the Exalted
    says:


    “He
    grants wisdom to whom He pleases; and he to whom wisdom is granted
    receives indeed a benefit overflowing; but none will grasp the Message
    but men of understanding.”  (Qur'an, 2: 269)


    In line
    with the above inspiring verse, the world's great teacher and educator,
    Prophet Muhammad
     (s.a.w.s.) , likewise inspired us to learn knowledge of
    Islam in order to be able to play a role in Islam that pleases
    Allah.  The following authentic Hadith states:


    ‘Abdur
    Rahman bin Abi Bakra’s  father

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that t
    he Prophet
     (s.a.w.s.)
     said:
    “If Allah wants to do good to a person, He makes him comprehend the
    religion and of course knowledge is attained by learning.” (Bukhari
    1/67)




    II. The Importance of Education


    Education
    in Islam plays important role in developing every individual (male or
    female) to be successful in realizing the very purpose of man's
    creation -- i.e., to worship Allah until death: 


    “I
    created not the jinn and men except that they should worship Me.”
    (Qur'an 51:56)


     “And
    worship your
    Rabb until there comes unto you the Hour that is certain (i.e.,
    death).” (Qur'an 15:99)


    The
    performance of Salât (five times daily obligatory prayers)
    serves as the foundation of Islam. Without it there is no Islam. 

    A person who
    abandons the prescribed compulsory prayers is not considered a Muslim:


    Jabir
    (r.a.) narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said, “Between a person and
    disbelief is discarding prayer.” (Ahmad, Muslim Abu Dawud and Ibn
    Majah)

    Burayda
    ibn Al-Hasib (r.a.) narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said, “
    The pact between us
    and them is prayer. Whoever abandons it is a unbeliever.
    ” (Ahmad, Abu
    Dawud Tirmidhi 574, Nasa'i and Ibn Majah)


    Worship (Ibaadah)
    in Islam does
    not only mean the prescribed prayers.  It is a
    comprehensive term as Islam is not only a religion but also a
    comprehensive way of life.

    Shaikh-ul-Islam
    Ibn Taimiyah (may Allah have mercy in him) explained the meaning of
    worship as follows:


    Al-Ibaadah
    (worship) is a
    comprehensive term that encompasses everything that Allâh loves and is
    pleased with of statements and actions, outward and inward.
     
    Therefore, prayer, Zakaat, fasting, pilgrimage, true speech,
    fulfilling trusts, being kind to parents, keeping the ties of kin,
    fulfilling promises, ordering good, eradicating evil, making Jihaad
    against the disbelievers and hypocrites, being good to one’s neighbor,
    orphans, poor, wayfarers and owned beings of humans and animals,
    supplications, remembrance of Allâh, reading the Qur’ân and so forth
    are all examples of acts of worship.  Similarly, loving Allâh and
    His Messenger, having fear of Allâh, turning unto Allâh, making one’s
    religion pure for Allâh alone, being patient with what He has decreed,
    thanking Him for His bounties, being pleased with His Preordainment,
    putting one’s trust in Him, hoping for His mercy, fearing His
    punishment and so forth are all forms of worship.  (Abdullah bin
    Jarullah Al-Jarullah, The Delight of Faith”. Darussalam
    Publishers and Distributors, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia,1996.)


    According
    to Prof. Dr. Umar S. Al-Ashqar in his book "Belief in Allah in the
    Light of the Qur'an and Sunnah", published by the International Islamic
    Publishing House, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 2000,

    Ibaadah

    has three pillars
    or essential components
    :


    1) Purity of
    intention (ikhlaas)
    : whereby a
    person seeks the Face of his Rabb and the Hereafter...If there is no
    purity of intention, good deeds are invalidated.


    2) Sincerity (Sidq): What we
    mean by sincerity is sincere resolve, whereby a person strives to obey
    the commands of Allah and avoid that which He has prohibited, to
    prepare himself to meet Him and to avoid feeling helpless or being too
    lazy to obey Allah.


    3) Following the
    Messenger (s.aw.s.):
    So a person
    does not worship Allah except according to what Allah has prescribed
    and what the Messenger (s.aw.s.) brought.  When people worship
    their Rabb without knowledge, this is bid'ah against which the
    Messenger (s.aw.s.) warned us, and condemned those who do it, and said
    that doing it is misguidance.  He said
    "Every newly-invented
    thing (in religion) is a bid'ah  and every bid'ah
    is a going astray, and every going astray is in the Fire."
    The one who
    does acts of  bid'ah will have his action rejected and it
    will not be accepted from him. (pp. 422-423)


    By
    performing all the acts of worship as defined in the Qur'an and the
    Sunnah, the worshipper actually attains total personality development
    and, hence, success.
    Islâm is
    unique as it truly guides people to succeed both in this world and the
    world Hereafter.  It teaches us the authentic knowledge of
    attaining real success in the everlasting world to come --  a
    fruitful success indeed in terms of the underlying eternal
    rewards.  Allâh the Almighty says in the Qur’ân:


    “Let
    there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good
    (i.e., Islâm), enjoining what is right (Islâmic monotheism), and
    forbidding what is wrong (polytheism, disbelief, etc.): they are the
    ones who are the successful.”  (Qur'an 3:104)  


    “But
    those who believe and do deeds of righteousness.  We shall soon
    admit them to Gardens, with rivers flowing beneath, to dwell therein
    forever.  Allâh’s promise is the truth, and whose word can be
    truer than Allâh’s?”   (Qur'an 4:122)


    “The
    believers, men and women, are protectors one of another.  They
    enjoin what is just and forbid what is evil.  They observe regular
    prayers practice regular charity and obey Allâh and His
    Messenger. On them will Allâh pour His mercy: for Allâh is Exalted
    in power Wise. Allâh has promised the believers, men and women, gardens
    under which rivers flow to dwell therein and beautiful mansions in
    gardens of everlasting bliss.  But the greatest bliss is the Good
    Pleasure of Allâh: that is the supreme success.”  (Qur'an 9:71-72)

    “Those
    who believe and whose hearts find satisfaction in the
    remembrance of Allâh: for without doubt in the remembrance of Allâh do
    hearts find satisfaction. For those who believe and work righteousness
    is (every) blessedness and a beautiful place of (final) return.”  (
    Qur'an
    13:28-29)


    “The
    only saying of the faithful believers, when they are called to Allâh
    and His Messenger to judge between them is they say: ‘We hear and we
    obey.’  And such are the successful.  And whoever obeys Allâh
    and His Messenger, such are the successful.”   (Qur'an
    24:51-52)


    Verily,
    the Righteous (they will be) in a position of Security, among Gardens
    and Springs; dressed in fine silk and in rich brocade they will face
    each other; and We shall join them to Companions with beautiful big and
    lustrous eyes. There can they call for every kind of fruit in peace and
    security; nor will they there taste death except the first death. 
    And He will save them from the Torment of the Blazing Fire as a bounty
    from your Rabb!  That will be the supreme success!”  (Qur'an
    44: 51- 57)


    From the
    above Qur’ânic
    Ayât (Verses), we can conclude that the successful are
    those (men and women) who believe and do righteous deeds. They are the
    righteous believers who call people to Islâm (i.e., enjoin what is
    right and forbid what is wrong).  They are those who obey Allâh (swt)
    and His Messenger
     (s.a.w.s.).  They will be saved from the torment of
    the Hell-Fire and dwell in Paradise forever. They will have the
    greatest bliss to see Allâh (swt).


    In line
    with the above Qur'anic verses are the following authentic Ahadîth,
    which guide us to the right ways of attaining success:


    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.)
    (radhiallahu anhu) narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said “Whoever
    believes in Allâh and His Messenger (s.a.w.s.), offers prayers
    perfectly and fasts (the month of) Ramadan then it is incumbent upon
    Allâh to admit him into Paradise, whether he emigrates for Allâh’s
    cause or stays in the land where he was born.”  They (the
    companions of the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
     said “O Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.)! Should we not inform the
    people of that?”   He said “There are one-hundred degrees in
    Paradise which Allâh has prepared for those who carry on Jihad in His
    Cause. The distance between every two degrees is like the distance
    between the sky and the Earth.  So if you ask Allâh for anything,
    ask Him for the Firdaus, for it is the last part of Paradise and the
    highest part of Paradise, and at its top there is the Throne of
    Beneficent, and from it gush forth the rivers of Paradise.”  
    (Bukhâri  9/519)

    Abû
    Hurairah

    (r.a.) (or Abû
    Said Al Khudri, r.a.) narrated that …Allâh’s  Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
     remarked, “I
    bear testimony that there is no god but Allâh and I am the Messenger of
    Allâh. The man who meets his Rabb without harboring any doubt about
    these two (truths) will never be kept away from Paradise.”  
    (Muslim 42) 


    It is
    narrated on the authority of Abu Ayyub

    (r.a.)
    that a man
    came to the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) and said “Direct me to a deed which
    draws me near to Paradise and takes me away from the Fire (of
    Hell).”  Upon this he (s.a.w.s.) said “You worship Allâh and never
    associate anything with Him, establish prayer, and pay Zakat, and do
    good to your kin. When he turned his back, Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
    remarked: if he adheres to what he has been ordered to do, he would
    enter Paradise.”    (Muslim 1/13)

    Abdullâh 
    ibn Amr ibn Al’As

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
    said “He is successful who has accepted Islâm, who has
    been provided with sufficient for his want and been made contented by
    Allâh with what He has given him.”  (Muslim 2293)

    Abû
    Dharr

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s  Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said “He has been
    successful whose heart Allâh has made sincere towards faith, whose
    heart He has made free from unbelief, his tongue truthful, his soul
    calm, his nature straight, whose ear He has made attentive and his eye
    observant. The ear is a funnel and the eye is a repository for what the
    heart learns. He is successful whose heart is made
    retentive.”    (Tirmidhî 5200, Ahmad and Bayhaqi)


    The
    quoted Ahadîth
     (plural of hadîth) clearly tell us that the
    successful are those who sincerely believe in Allâh

    (swt) and
    His Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    and
    do righteous deeds.  In other words, the successful are those who
    faithfully follow Islâm as a religion and a complete way of life. Thus,
    only authentic knowledge of the Qur’ân and the Sunnah provides
    explicit and perfect guidance to attaining eternal success.  This
    is because Islâm is the true religion from Allâh, the Only God and
    Creator of the Worlds. Allâh the Almighty tells us in the Qur’ân:


    “Truly
    the Religion before Allâh (swt)s Islâm (submission to His Will). 
    Those who were given the Scripture (the Jews and the Christians) did
    not differ except out of mutual jealousy, after knowledge had come to
    them.  But if any denies the Signs of Allâh, Allâh (swt)s swift in
    calling to account.”    (Qur'an 3:19)


    As the
    true religion, Islâm tells us that the only true guidance is the
    guidance of Allâh (swt). It is Allâh

    (swt) Alone
    Who guides people to the Truth and the Right Way:


     “...Say:
    ‘True guidance is the is the guidance of Allâh ... All bounties are in
    the hands of Allâh.  He grants them to whom He pleases.  And
    Allâh cares for all and He knows all things.”   (Qur'an 3:73)


    “This
    is the Guidance of Allâh.  He gives that guidance to whom He
    pleases, of His servants if they were to join other gods with Him, all
    that they did would be vain for them.”   (Qur'an 6:88)


     “Those
    to whom Allâh wills to guide, He opens their breast to Islâm. 
    Those whom He wills to leave straying, He makes their breast close and
    constricted, as if they had to climb up to the skies; thus does Allâh
    lay abomination on those who refuse to believe.”   (Qur'an
    6:125)


    “Whom
    Allâh does guide, he is on the right path.  Whom He rejects from
    His guidance, such are the persons who lose.”   (Qur'an
    7:178)


    Allâh’s
    Guidance, therefore is the key to success both in this world and the
    life Hereafter.  To be successful, we must know how to seek
    Allâh’s Guidance and the best way to attain this is to have authentic
    knowledge of Islâm.  We have to have sufficient knowledge of the
    Qur’ân and the Sunnah so that we know how to practice Islâm
    wholeheartedly and share it to others for the sole pleasure of Allâh
    (swt). Indeed, education plays a very vital role in providing authentic
    knowledge of Islam -- one that is based on the Qur’ân and the Sunnah
    It can train every individual who seeks for true success both in this
    world and in the life hereafter to practice Islam and share it to
    others.
     



    III. The Relevant Curriculum


    To be
    able to please Allah (swt), we need to know how to worship Him
    according to the Qur'an and the authentic Sunnah.  This means that
    we need authentic knowledge of Islam.  Education to be relevant to
    the needs of the Muslims, must therefore offer the right curriculum in
    accordance with the very purpose of man's creation.  That
    curriculum has to teach knowledge as taught to us by Allah's Messenger
    and Prophet, Muhammad (s.a.w.s.).  The world's Great Teacher and
    Educator defined knowledge succinctly as shown in the following Ahâdîth:


    Abdullah
    ibn Amir ibn Al As

    (r.a.)
    narrated that

    Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.) 
    said,

    “Knowledge consists of three things: the decisive verses (Qur’an),
    authentic Hadith and prescriptions rightly deduced from the two. 
    What is beside them is superfluous (extra).
    ” (Ibn Majah
    1/54)


    ‘Abdullâh 
    ibn Amir ibn Al-As

    (r.a.)
    narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.) 
    said, 

    “Knowledge has
    three categories; anything else is extra; a precise verse, or an
    established Sunnah (practice), or a firm obligatory duty.”
     (Abu
    Daud, 2879)


    Shayk
    ‘Abdul ‘Azeez bin Baaz (may Allah have mercy on him) in his book
    "Knowledge" defined knowledge comprehensively as follows:


    Knowledge consists of
    many branches, but according to the scholars of Islam: “What is meant
    by knowledge in the absolute sense is Islamic knowledge.”


    This is
    the intended meaning of knowledge in the book of Allah and the Sunnah
    of His Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.).  In
    the absolute sense, it is knowledge regarding Allah, His names and
    attributes, knowledge of His rights over His creation, and what He, the
    One free from all defects, the Most High, has prescribed for them. It
    is the detailed knowledge of the path that leads to  Allah; 
    knowledge  of  the  purpose  of our creation;
    and the end which the slave will result in, in the Hereafter.


    ...The
    greatest and most excellent knowledge  is that which pertains to
    Allah, His names, and His attributes, and this knowledge is known as `aqeedah
    (belief).  Indeed to Allah, the exalted and Supreme, belongs the
    best example which is the highest description in every aspect of His
    essence, names, attributes and actions.


    Following
    this is that which is related to Allah’s right over His creation, what
    He has prescribed upon them.  Following this is what supports and
    bonds it in understanding such as knowledge of the principles of
    Arabic, Islamic terminology, principles of
    fiqh, haadeeth
    (and its) methodology and other sciences which are
    connected to this knowledge, which assist it in both understanding and
    precision.


    The
    biography of the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.),
     Islamic history, biography of the narrators of hadeeth and of the
    scholars of Islam are also part of this knowledge (pp. 4-5).


    In
    brief, Shayk bin Baaz defined knowledge as “Allah said...” and “The
    Messenger said...” which is called
    Ilm Shar; it is the knowledge of the Book of Allah and the
    Sunnah of His Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.) and
    all that assist its understanding (1995, p.15).


    From the
    Islamic point of view we can, therefore, say that

    knowledge means
    the knowledge of the Qur’an and the Sunnah and all that we can deduce
    from the two as well as those that assist us in understanding them


    To be
    able to attain a responsive and relevant education, schools,
    colleges,  universities and other learning institutions (whether
    formal or non-formal) must give importance to Islamic curriculum. 
    It must impart to its learners knowledge of the Qur'an and the Sunnah
    (authentic Ahâdîth) as well the right deductions from these two
    revealed knowledge.  Only in this way that education attains its
    role in developing every human being to fulfill the very purpose of
    life -- to worship Allah (Qur'an 51:56); and, thus, attain success both
    in this world and in the life Hereafter. 


    One very
    important subject that has been ignored by educators and curriculum
    makers is the subject on Da'wah according to the Qur'an and the
    Sunnah.  This subject is supposed to be taught starting at least
    in the high school level where the learner has to learn the
    characteristics of a da'ee (one who invites others to Islam);
    the knowledge to be conveyed to others; and the methodology  or
    techniques of delivering the message of Islam (or inviting others to
    Islam) in the light of the Qur'an and the Sunnah.  By offering
    this important subject, let say in the senior high school, the student
    even if he/she desires not to pursue college or higher education, at
    least learns the basics of doing Da'wah. This subject has to be taught
    extensively in college not only those who choose Islamic Studies as
    their specialized field of studies or course but also to all Muslim
    students.  One of the most important duties that we must know in
    Islâm is the obligation to do Da’wah. Da’wah is the
    very Sunnah and the very essence of the Prophet’s mission,
    which we must also follow as Muslims.  Allah the Almighty says:


    “Obey
    Allâh and obey the Messenger and beware (of evil): if you do turn back
    know you that it is Our Messenger’s duty to convey (the Message) in the
    clearest manner.”   (5:92)


    “Say
    (O Muhammad):  ‘This is my Way; I do invite unto Allâh with
    certain knowledge.”  I and whoever follows me (must also
    invite others to the Oneness of Allâh with sure knowledge). Glory to
    Allâh!  And I am not of the polytheists.’”  (12: 108)


    In this
    contemporary world, where there are more extra knowledge (non-Islamic
    subjects) being offered in most existing schools and institutions for
    the Muslims than Islamic knowledge (Qur'an and Sunnah), it is
    imperative for Muslim educators, curriculum and educational policy
    makers to be united and work for the Islamization of knowledge.


    Knowing
    the importance of Islamic education, Muslim scholars particularly those
    based in the International Institute of Islamic Thought, Herndon,
    Virginia, USA propose the idea of the Islamization of knowledge. 
    Dr. Alwani proposes a cultural strategy which must firmly establish
    Islam and its vision, not through limited classes on `religion’ but
    throughout the entire education system. According to him every syllabus
    and program must aim at forming and establishing this belief; we must
    clear every syllabus of anything that contradicts or opposes this
    belief.  This could be done by reorganizing the education system
    in all Muslim countries and removing the negative influences of the
    disparity between religious, secular, civil and military education...to
    end the segmentation of knowledge.  This could be achieved by
    integrating all existing systems and creating one single system based
    on the teachings, spirit and vision of Islam. The new education system,
    its syllabi and methods, and those responsible for it, should all be
    infused with the principles and aims of Islam (1989, p. 12).


    Educators
    and curriculum makers need to understand the importance of Islamic
    education and thus support the implementation of the idea of Islamizing
    knowledge that are non-Islamic or considered as extra knowledge.
    Mankind need to learn that Islam, as the rational religion and the
    complete way of life for the whole humanity is never against science
    and technology and other useful knowledge that develop man's economic
    and material development and prosperity. Neither is it against 
    other disciplines (e.g., foreign language, human behavior,
    administration, organization, management) that help build and foster
    socio-cultural understanding between and among individuals and groups;
    and universal peaceful co-existence of peace-loving nations and states.
    What Islam does not like is a knowledge that is not beneficial to man's
    material and spiritual well-being:


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “The knowledge from which no benefit is derived is like a treasure out
    of which nothing is spent in the cause of Allâh.”  (Tirmidhi 
    280)


    Islam is
    a religion and a complete way of life that offers a well-balanced way
    of life.  It guides us to strive hard to enjoy the material
    comfort, socio-cultural understanding and universal peace and
    prosperity in this world and at the same time to develop our spiritual
    aspects of life in order to enjoy everlasting peace, happiness and
    ultimate success in the life Hereafter.  Allâh the Most High says
    in His Glorious Book:


    “But
    seek the wealth which Allâh has bestowed on you, the Home of the
    Hereafter, nor forget your portion in this World. But do good, as Allâh
    has been good to you, and seek not (occasions for) mischief in the
    land;  for Allâh loves not those who do mischief.”  
    (28:77)


    “And
    when the prayer is finished, then may you disperse through the land,
    and seek of the Bounty of Allâh: and remember Allâh frequently that you
    may prosper.”    (62:10)


    As part
    of Allâh’s divine guidance, we also read in the Qur’ân the following
    brief but comprehensive supplication for a well-balanced life:


    (“Rabbana
    atina fey dunia hasanah wa feyl akhiratty hasanah waqina addab
    annar.”) 
     “Our
    Rabb! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter.  And
    save us from the torment of the Fire!”  (2:201)


    Likewise,
    Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)

    taught
    us to supplicate to Allâh for a well-balanced life.  Let us take
    guidance to supplicate for a well-balanced life from the following
    authentic Ahâdîth:


     ‘Abdullâh 
    bin Jabir (r.a.) narrated that he heard Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
    say: “There is an hour during the night in which no Muslim individual
    will ask Allâh for good in this world and the next without His giving
    it to him; and that applies to every night.”   (Muslim

    1654)

    ‘Abdullâh 
    bin As-Sa’ib
    (r.a.)
    narrated: “I heard Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
     said
    “Say  between the two corners, 'O Allâh, bring us a blessing in
    this world and a blessing in the next and guard us from punishment of
    Hell.'” (Abu Dawud 1887)

    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.)
    narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said
    “Seventy angels have been put in charge of it (i.e. the Yamani corner),
    so if anyone says,  'O Allâh, I ask  You for pardon and
    well-being in this world and the next; our Rabb, bring us a blessing in
    this world and a blessing in the next, and guard us from the punishment
    of Hell', they will say Ameen.” (Tirmidhi  2590 and Ibn Majah)


    Knowledge
    that teaches and develops the learners for a well-balanced life
    constitutes the relevant education that every sensible individual who
    truly wants success must strive for.  It is the good education
    which the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said is the best thing that a parent has
    to give to his child:


    Amr bin
    Sa’id or Sa’id bin Al-‘As

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’ Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “A father gives his child nothing better than a good
    education.”  (Tirmidhi  4977 and Baihaqi)


    Given
    the choice, however, between the life in this world and the life in the
    Hereafter, Islâm teaches us to choose the eternal life in the
    Hereafter. Islâm inspires the righteous believers with ultimate success
    in paradise and gives clear admonitions to the unbelievers of their
    severe and eternal punishments in the hell-fire.  It guides
    mankind to know and understand that life in this world is nothing
    compared to the life in the Hereafter.  Allâh, the Almighty, tells
    us:


    “Nothing
    is the life of this world but play and amusement. But for better is the
    Home in the Hereafter for those who are pious. Will you not then
    understand?” (6:32)


    “Allâh
    does enlarge, or grant by (strict) measure, the Sustenance (which He
    gives) to whom He pleases. They rejoice in the life of this world: but
    the life of this world is nothing but little comfort compared to the
    Hereafter.”  (13:26)


    Allâh
    the Exalted emphasizes that the life of this world is deceiving
    (6:130). Many people love this fleeting life and neglect the Hereafter
    (75:20-21). Those who desire the life of the present and its glitter
    will suffer in the Fire in the Hereafter (11:15-16). Those who wish for
    the transitory things (of this life), Allâh will grant them such things
    as He wills, to such persons as He wills. In the end, however, He has
    provided for them punishment in Hell. They will burn therein, disgraced
    and rejected (17:18). Our Creator makes it clear that supreme
    success is the eternal life in Paradise and that the dwellers of
    Paradise are the ones who are indeed successful:


    “For
    them Allâh has got ready Gardens (Paradise) under which rivers flow, to
    dwell therein for ever.  That is the supreme success.”  
    (9:89)


     “They
    will never taste death therein except the first death (of this
    world).  And He will save them from the Torment of the Blazing
    Fire as a bounty from your Rabb!  That will be the supreme
    success!”  (44:56, 57)


    “Not
    equal are the dwellers of the Fire and the dwellers of the
    Paradise.  It is the dwellers of Paradise that will be
    successful.”   (59:20)


    Education,
    to be effective, must have a relevant curriculum that develops the
    learners not only to enjoy the comfort of this material and temporary
    world but most of all to be spiritually and morally prepared for the
    eternal life Hereafter. Teachers and educators and everybody in the
    educational system must take admonition from the following Ahâdîth:


    Abdullâh 
    ibn Mas’ud (r.a.) said that if the people of knowledge were to preserve
    it and impart it to those who were worthy of it they will most
    certainly be the leaders of their age by virtue of it. But they passed
    it on to the people of the world to attain thereby some portion of
    their world, so they fell in their estimation. I heard Allâh’s
    Messenger (s.a.w.s.) saying: “Whoever centers all his thoughts upon one
    object, viz. the thought of the Hereafter, Allâh will provide him with
    the worldly needs, and he whose whole distraction is worldly ends,
    Allâh does not care in what wilderness of the world he
    perishes.”    (Tirmidhi  263 and Ibn Majah)


    Anas
    bin Malik and Zayd bin Thabit (r.a.)  narrated that the Prophet
    (s.a.w.s.) said  “If anyone’s intention is to seek the
    hereafter,  Allâh will place his sufficiency in his heart and
    order his affairs, and the world will come to him submissively; but if
    anyone’s intention is to seek worldly good Allâh will place poverty
    before him and disorder his affairs, and only so much of it as has been
    ordained for him will come to him.”  (Tirmidhi  5320, Ahmad
    and Darimi)
     


    IV.
    The Need for Education Based on the Qur'an and the Sunnah


    Knowing
    the importance of education, the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) enjoined us to
    acquire knowledge and teach it to the people. The following authentic Ahâdîth
     tell us how our Great Teacher and Educator (s.a.w.s.)
    stressed the need for education based on the Qur'an and the Sunnah:


    `Abdullah
    ibn Mas`ud narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said, “Do not wish to
    be like anyone except in two cases.  (The first is) a person whom
    Allah has given wealth and he spends it righteously; (the second is)
    the one whom Allah has given wisdom (the Holy Qur’an) and he acts
    according to it and teaches it to others.” (Bukhari, 1/73 and 1/ 255)


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that Allâh's Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
    said “Learn the obligatory acts and the Qur’ân and teach them to
    the people, for I am a mortal.” (Tirmidhi  244)


    Abdullâh 
    ibn Mas’ud (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said to
    me, “Acquire the knowledge and impart it to the people.  Acquire
    the knowledge of Fara'id (laws of inheritance) and teach it to the
    people.  Learn the Qur’ân and teach it to the people; for I am a
    person who has to depart this world.  And the knowledge will be
    taken away and turmoil will appear to such an extent that two people
    will not agree in regard to a case of inheritance distribution and find
    none who would decide between them.” (Tirmidhi  279, Darimi
    and Daraqutni)


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.)  narrated...that Umar bin 'Abdul 'Aziz (r.a.)
    wrote to Abu Bakr bin Hazm, “Look for the knowledge of Hadîth and get
    it written, as I am afraid that religious knowledge will vanish and the
    religious learned men will pass away (die). Do not accept anything save
    the Ahâdîth of the Prophet (s.a.w.s.). Circulate knowledge and teach
    the ignorant, for knowledge does not vanish except when it is kept
    secretly (to oneself).”  (Bukhâri  1/98)


    For our
    success, we need to learn knowledge as defined by the Prophet
    (s.a.w.s.) -- i.e.,  one that is based on the Qur'an and the
    Sunnah and the right deductions from these two revealed
    knowledge.  Whatever authentic Islamic knowledge that we learn, we
    must make efforts, try our very best to share it to others.



    V.
    Allâh Commends Those
    who are Endowed with Knowledge and Promises Them Everlasting Rewards

    Allâh

    (swt)
     not only commands the whole mankind to seek knowledge but
    also commends those who are knowledgeable.  He encourages the
    learned by promising them tremendous rewards. The following Ayât
    (Qur'anic Verses) state:


    “He
    grants wisdom to whom He pleases; and he to whom wisdom is granted
    receives indeed a benefit overflowing; but none will grasp the Message
    but men of understanding.”   (2: 269)


    “...Allâh
    will raise up, to (suitable) ranks (and degrees), those of you who
    believe and have been granted Knowledge.  And Allâh is
    well-acquainted with all you do.”   (58:11)


    Allâh
    (swt) has
    honored and extolled the people who possess knowledge of Islâm. 
    He has raised their status high by including them among with those who
    bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped but
    Allâh.   He the Almighty says:


    “Allâh
    bears witness that none has the right to be worshipped but He, and the
    angels, and those having knowledge (also bear witness to this); (He is
    always) maintaining His Creation in justice.  None has the right
    to be worshipped but He, the Almighty the All-Wise.”   (3:18)


    In
    another verse, Allâh
    (swt)
     tells us that “Only those who have knowledge among His
    slaves that fear Allâh...”
     (35:28).  In return for
    their being god-fearing, Allâh is pleased with them.  They receive
    Allâh’s  admonition. Allâh  the Exalted tells us in His Book:


    “On
    the other hand for those who fear their Rabb are gardens with rivers
    flowing beneath therein are they to dwell (for ever) a gift from the
    presence of Allâh and that which is in the presence of Allâh is the
    best (bliss) for the righteous.”
      (3:198)


    “O
    you who believe!  If you fear Allâh, He will grant you a criterion
    (to judge between right and wrong) remove from you (all) evil (that may
    afflict) you and forgive you: for Allâh is the Rabb of grace
    unbounded.”   (8:29)


    “As
    for those who fear their Rabb Unseen, for them is Forgiveness and a
    great Reward.”   (67:12)


    Is
    then one who does know that, that which has been Revealed unto you from
    your Rabb is the Truth, like the one who is blind?  It is those
    who are endowed with understanding that receive admonition;  those
    who fulfill the Covenant of Allâh and fail not in their plighted word;
    those who join together those things, which Allâh has commanded to be
    joined, hold their Rabb in awe, and fear the terrible reckoning; those
    who patiently persevere, seeking the countenance of their Creator;
    establish regular prayers, spend out of (the gifts) We have bestowed
    for their sustenance, secretly and openly; and turn off Evil with good:
    for such there is the final attainment of the (eternal) Home.
     Gardens of perpetual bliss: they shall enter there as well as the
    righteous among their fathers, their spouses and their offspring and
    angels shall enter unto them from every gate (with the salutation)
    “Peace unto you for  that  you persevered in patience! 
    Now how excellent is the final Home!”  (13:19-24)


    When we
    acquire knowledge of Islâm we learn not only the divine purpose why
    Allâh

    (swt) has
    created us but also understand the meaning of this temporary world, and
    how we should prepare our lives to enjoy the everlasting life in the
    hereafter.  We know that only when we peacefully and completely
    submit to Allâh, believe and fear in Him, follow and obey His Messenger
    (s.a.w.s.), do righteous deeds for the sole purpose of pleasing Him
    alone, and subsequently refrain from committing sins do we attain
    salvation.  When we acquire knowledge we are assured of
    Allâh’s  everlasting reward. We gain Allâh’s  protection from
    the terrible punishments in the hell-fire that await those who do not
    believe because they are devoid of wisdom.  For our benefit we
    should strive to acquire knowledge of Islam because Allâh makes it very
    clear that those who know are not equal with those who do not
    know.  He tells us:


    “Is
    one who worships devoutly during the hours of the night prostrating
    himself or standing (in adoration), who takes heed of the Hereafter,
    and who places his hope in the Mercy of his God—like one who does
    not?   Say: 'Are those equal, those who know and those who do
    not know?”  It is those who are endowed with understanding that
    receive admonition.'”    (39:9)

     

    VI. Prophet Muhammad
    (s.a.w.s.) Inspired
    Those who Acquire Knowledge of Islâm, the Scholars and Those Who Teach
    It to Others


    In
    line with Allah's commandment for us to acquire knowledge of

    Islâm, the
    Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    also
    inspired
    those who acquire knowledge of Islâm, the  knowledgeable or the
    scholars and those who teach it to others.  Let us take
    inspirations from the following narrations of Ahâdîth:


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that...the Prophet (s.a.w.s.)  said,
    “Those who were the best in the pre-lslamic period of ignorance will be
    the best in Islâm provided they comprehend the religious
    knowledge.”    (Bukhâri  4/572 and Muslim)


    Abu
    Musa (r.a.) narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said, “The example of
    guidance and knowledge with which Allâh has sent me is like abundant
    rain falling on the earth, some of which was fertile soil that absorbed
    rain water and brought forth vegetation and grass in abundance. (And)
    another portion of it was hard and held the rain water and Allâh
    benefited the people with it and they utilized it for drinking, making
    their animals drink from it and for irrigation of the land for
    cultivation. (And) a portion of it was barren which could neither hold
    the water nor bring forth vegetation (then that land gave no benefits).
    The first is the example of the person who comprehends Allâh’s religion
    and gets benefit (from the knowledge) which Allâh has revealed through
    me. The Prophet learns and then teaches others. The last example is
    that of a person who does not care for it and does not take Allâh’s
    guidance revealed through me (He is like that barren land.).” 
    (Bukhâri  1/79)


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that... the Prophet (s.a.w.s.)  said,
    “... He who treads the path in search of knowledge, Allâh will make
    that path easy, leading to Paradise for him and those persons who
    assemble in one of the houses of Allâh (mosques), recite the Book of
    Allâh and learn and teach the Qur’ân (among themselves). There will
    descend upon them tranquility, mercy will cover them, the angels will
    surround them and Allâh will mention them in the presence of those near
    Him. He who is slow-paced in doing good deeds, his (long) descent does
    not make him go ahead.”   (Muslim 6518)

    Abu
    Umama (r.a.) narrated that the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) said, “A learned
    person is as much above a worshipper as I am above the least of you. He
    added: Allâh, His angels and all those in Heavens and on Earth, even
    the ants in their hills and the fish in the water, call down blessings
    on those who instruct people in beneficial knowledge.” 
    (Tirmidhi  1392)
     


    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “Verily what a believer continues to receive (in the form of reward)
    for his action and his virtues after his death is the knowledge which
    he acquired and then disseminate;  the pious son that he left
    behind him, or a copy of the Qur’ân which he left as a legacy, or the
    mosques that he had built, or the inn that he had built for the
    wayfarers, or the canal that he caused to flow, or a
    sadaqah which he gave out of his property in the state when he was
    healthy and alive. (These are the acts of goodness the reward of which)
    reaches him even after his death.”   (Tirmidhi  254 and
    Ibn Majah)


    Abdullâh 
    ibn Mas’ud (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said,
    “There are two avaricious people who are never contented: the man of
    learning and the man of the world, but the two are not equal. The man
    of knowledge increases in submission to Allâh, and as for the man of
    the world, he becomes headstrong and defiant.”  
    Abdullâh  then recited: ‘Nay man is surely rebellious when he sees
    himself free from want.’ (46:6).  Concerning the other he recited
    the verse: ‘Surely those of His servants who are possessed of
    knowledge, fear Allâh.’ (35:28).”  (Tirmidhi 261 and Darimi)
     


    Abu
    Darda (r.a.) narrated that Kathir ibn Qays said, “I was sitting with
    Abu  Darda' in the mosque of Damascus.  A man came to him and
    said, “Abu Darda, I have come to you from the town of the Allâh’s
    Messenger (s.a.w.s.) for a tradition that I have heard you relate from
    the Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.). I have come for no other
    purpose.”  He said, “I heard Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) say: ‘If
    anyone travels on a road in search of knowledge, Allâh will cause him
    to travel on one of the roads of Paradise. The angels will lower their
    wings in their great pleasure with one who seeks knowledge, the
    inhabitants of the heavens and the Earth and the fish in the deep
    waters will ask forgiveness for the learned man. The superiority of the
    learned man over the devout is like that of the moon, on the night when
    it is full, over the rest of the stars. The learned are the heirs of
    the Prophets, and the Prophets leave neither dinar nor dirham, leaving
    only knowledge, and he who takes it takes an abundant portion.’” 
    (Abu Dawud 3634)
     


    Al
    Hasan Al Basrit  narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said,
    “The superiority of a scholar, who observes the prescribed prayer and
    then sits down to teach people goodness, over the worshipper, who
    observes fast during the day and worships during the night, is like my
    superiority over the lowest in rank amongst
    you.”     (Tirmidhi  250)
     


    Anas
    ibn Malik (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said, “Do
    you know who is most generous?” They said, “Allâh and His Messenger
    know best.”   Whereupon he said, “Allâh is the Most Generous,
    then I am most generous to mankind, and the most generous people after
    me would be those who will acquire knowledge and then disseminate it…”
    (Tirmidhi  259)
     


    Hasan
    Al-Basri (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said, “He
    whom death overtakes while he is engaged in acquiring knowledge with a
    view to reviving Islâm with the help of it, there will be one degree
    between him and the Prophets in Paradise.”  (Tirmidhi  249
    and Darimi)
     

    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that he heard Allâh’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
     as saying: “He who comes to this mosque of mine and he comes only
    to learn or teach a khayr (good, i.e. the Qur’ân and the Sunnah), 
    his status is like that of one who strives in the cause of Allâh. He
    who comes for any other motive, his status is like that of a person who
    covets the property of another.”   (Tirmidhi  742, Ibn
    Majah and Bayhaqi)
     


    Uthman
    ibn Affan (r.a.) reported that Allah’s  Messenger  said,
    “The most excellent amongst you is he who acquires knowledge of the
    Qur’an and then passes it on (to others).”  (Ibn Majah, Vol. 1,
    Hadith 212)


    The
    narrated authentic Ahâdîth  from the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.) 
    are very inspiring.  It is for us to follow them in order to
    attain the blessings and rewards that are associated to the acquisition
    and imparting of Islamic knowledge or in short, what the the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said as good education.

     We
    should be inspired to teach what we know of Islâm with the following ayah:


    “But
    teach (the Message): for teaching benefits the Believers.”  
    (51:55)


    In line
    with our obligation to teach what we know of Islâm, the Prophet
    (s.a.w.s.) encouraged
    us to
    teach and be
    good teachers:

    Abdullâh 
    ibn Amir

    (r.a.)
     narrated that Allâh’s
    Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.) 
    happened to pass by two groups (of Muslims) in the mosque and he said,

    “Both of them are good, but one is superior to the other. One
    group is supplicating Allâh and praying Him. If He so wills He will
    confer upon them and if He so wills He will withhold. So far as those
    who are acquiring the understanding of religion and its knowledge and
    are busy in teaching the ignorant, they are superior. Verily I have
    been sent as a teacher.”   He then sat down amongst them. (Tirmidhi 
    257 and Darimi)

    Abu
    Humamah Al- Bahili

    (r.a.)
     narrated that mention was made to Allâh’s
    Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)

    of two
    persons: the one being a devout, and the other being a scholar.
    Thereupon Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)

    said,
    “The superiority of the scholar over the devout is like my superiority
    over one who is of the lowest rank amongst you. Then Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “Verily (for the scholars) Allâh and His angels, the dwellers of
    the Heavens and of the Earth, even an ant in its hole and fish (in the
    depth of water) invoke blessings on one who teaches people goodness.”

    (Tirmidhi
    213)


    With all
    the inspiring Islamic teachings on the virtues of learning and teaching
    what we know of Islam, it becomes imperative for us Muslims to strive
    hard to seek for Islamic knowledge the way our Prophet and Great
    Teacher (s.a.w.s.) taught us.  We should continuously seek
    knowledge, no matter how young or old we are as to do so is a
    characteristic of a believer. The following Hadîth should
    inspire us to continuously seek for Islamic knowledge:

    Abu
    Said Al-Khudri

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allah’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “A believer is never satiated with gainful knowledge; he goes acquiring
    it till his death and entry into Paradise.”  (Tirmidhi 222)


    It is
    for our success that we learn the knowledge (according to the Qur'an
    and the Sunnah) that our Great Educator

    (s.a.w.s.)
    taught us.  Islamic knowledge is actually the best education
    because of its relevance to our success both in this world and the life
    Hereafter. 

    What we
    know of Islam, it is imperative that we share it to others. We must
    further know that Islâm warns the learned among us from concealing our
    knowledge.  The Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    admonished
    us as narrated in the following Hadîth:

    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “He who is asked about knowledge and conceals it will be bridled
    on the Day of Judgment with a bridle of fire.” (Abu Dawud 3650,
    Tirmidhi and Ibn Maja)


    VII.
    Non-Formal Education
    through Da’wah


    We have
    to try teaching Islâm to the best of our capacity. We can teach
    Islam to others both through formal and non-formal education. 
    Non-formal education includes: 1) conducting lectures to individual
    and/or groups; 2) writing books, articles, letters, etc. on
    Islam;  3) having Islamic website; 4) distributing reading
    materials (by e-mail or posts) that will enlighten others of the True
    Religion, Islam in its authentic form.  In this manner they will
    learn to know Islam especially  the worship of the Only True God,
    Allah and be able to obey adhere to the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad
    (s.a.w.s.). 


    An
    example of non-formal education is Da'wah or calling or inviting
    people to Islam for the pleasure of Allah the Almighty.  While
    Allâh

    (swt)
     makes it very clear that there is no compulsion in
    religion for Truth stands out clear from Error...(2:256) He, however,
    enjoins the Muslim believers to do Da’wah (to invite all to
    Islâm) in order to lead the whole mankind to the true and perfect
    religion.  He

    (swt) commands:


    “Let
    there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is 
    good,  enjoining  what is right, and forbidding what is
    wrong: they are the ones to attain felicity.”   (3:104)


    “Invite
    (all) to the Way of your Rabb (i.e., Islâm) with wisdom and beautiful
    preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious:
    for your Rabb knows best, who have strayed from His Path, and who
    receive guidance.” (16:125)


    In line
    with the Qur’ânic injunctions to do Da’wah, the Prophet 

    (s.a.w.s.)
    also enjoined us to invite others to Islâm:

    Abu
    Bakra

    (r.a.)
    narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said ... “It is incumbent upon those who are present to convey this
    message (of mine) to those who are absent.  May be that some of
    those to whom it will be conveyed will understand it better than those
    who have actually heard it.” (Bukhâri 5/688, 1/67 and 2/797)


    Abdullâh 
    Bin ‘Amr
    (r.a.)
    narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “Convey (my teachings) to the people even if it were a single
    Ayah (verse)...”  (Bukhâri 4/667)


    We
    should be inspired to do

    Da’wah

    Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.) not
    only encouraged us to seek knowledge in order to convey Islâm to others
    but also invoked prayer for those who learn and transmit Islâmic
    knowledge to others:  


    Abdullâh 
    Ibn Mas’ud

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger
    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “May Allâh be well pleased with the servant
    who heard our words, remembered them, retained them well and then
    passed them on to others. How many scholars are there who are the
    scholars of religion without having an understanding of it, and how
    many scholars of religion are there who convey knowledge to those who
    are well versed compared with them. There are three things on account
    of which no rancor enters a Muslim heart: the sincerity of purpose for
    Allâh’s sake, seeking goodness for the Muslims and adhering to their
    main body (jama'ah), for their prayers encompass them all
    round.”  (Tirmidhi 228)


    If we do
    Da’wah for the pleasure of Allâh, our only Rabb
    (Cherisher and Sustainer) will reward us
    prosperous lives. Allâh the Exalted not only commends those who call
    people to Islâm (41:33 and 103:1-3) but subsequently promises unlimited
    rewards to them (39:33-35).  Allâh the Most High says:


    “Who
    is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allâh, works
    righteousness, and says, ‘I am one of the Muslims?’” (41:33)


    “And
    he who brings the Truth and he who confirms (and supports) it—such are
    the men who do right.  They shall have all that they wish for,
    with their Rabb.  Such is the reward of those who do good: so that
    Allâh will remit from them (even)  the worst  in 
    their  deeds and give them their reward according to the best of
    what they have done.”  (39:33-35)


    Doing
    da'wah to others, means that we are doing a good deed worthy of Allah's
    rewards.  This is one  way to help others be guided to Islâm
    and thus, attains Allah's pleasure and rewards.  We learn from the
    following authentic Ahâdîth:

    Abu
    Mas’ud Al-Ansari
    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “…One who guides to something good has a reward similar
    to that of its doer.” (Muslim 4/4665)

    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.)
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “He who called people to righteousness, there would be reward (assured)
    for him like the rewards of those who adhered to it, without their
    rewards being diminished in any respect. And he who called (people) to
    error, he shall have to carry (the burden) of its sin, like those who
    committed it, without their sins being diminished in any respect.” (Muslim 4/6470)


    One of
    the basic knowledge in Islâm that we should remember is to do Da’wah
    according to the Qur’ân and the Sunnah.  The Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    just like other prophets and messengers of Allâh before him, invited
    people to the worship of One God, Allâh).  Let us be reminded with
    the following Qur'anic injunctions and authentic  Hadith:


    “Say
    (O Muhammad):  ‘O men! I am sent unto you all, as Allâh’s
    Messenger to Whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth:
    there is no god but He. So believe in Allâh and His
    Messenger...’”    (7:158)


    “Say,
    ‘He is Allâh the One. The Eternally besought of all.  He begets
    not nor was He begotten and there is none comparable unto
    Him.’”    (112: 1-4)


    Ibn
    Abbas

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that when Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    sent Mu'adh to Yemen, he said (to him),  “You are going to people
    of the Book. First of all invite them to worship Allâh (Alone) and when
    they come to know Allâh, inform them that Allâh has enjoined on them,
    five prayers in every day and night; and if they start offering these
    prayers, inform them that Allâh has enjoined on them, the Zakat
    (charity). And it is to be taken from the rich amongst them and given
    to the poor amongst them; and if they obey you in that, take Zakat from
    them and avoid (don't take) the best property of the people as
    Zakat.”    (Bukhâri 2/537)


    In
    conveying the Message of Islâm, Allâh’s Messenger (
    s.a.w.s.)
    never
    resorted to any other book or source of knowledge and guidance but the
    Qur’ân and the Sunnah (both divine scriptures and guidance
    from Allâh (swt). In fact, he rebuked one of his closest companions by
    trying to refer to the Torah.

    Jâbir
    ibn ‘Abdullâh
    (r.a.)
    narrated that ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattâb

    (r.a.) brought
    to Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    a
    copy of the Torah and said, “Allâh’s  Messenger
    (s.a.w.s.)
    this is a copy of the Torah.”  He

    (s.a.w.s.)  kept quiet
    and he (‘Umar) began to read it. The (color) of the face of
    Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    underwent
    a change; whereupon Abû Bakr

    (r.a.) said,
    “Would that your mother mourn you, don’t you see the face of
    Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)?” ‘Umar
    (r.a.) saw the face of Allâh’s  Messenger

    (
    s.a.w.s.)
    and
    said, “I seek refuge with Allâh from the wrath of Allâh and the wrath
    of His Messenger.”  We are well pleased with Allâh as Rabb, with
    Islâm as religion, and with Muhammad
    (s.a.w.s.)
    as
    Prophet. “Whereupon Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “By Him in Whose Hand is the life of Muhammad, even if Moses were to
    appear before you and you were to follow him, leaving me aside, you
    would certainly stray into error. If (Moses) were alive (now), and he
    found my prophethood, he would have definitely followed me.” 
    (Tirmidhî 194, Darimi and Mishkât 1/20)


    The
    above Hadîth shows how the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    abhorred
    the use of other sources (of religious knowledge) other than what he
    has left us. As reported in other hadîth  the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
     stressed
    that we should always stick to the Qur’ân and the Sunnah and
    the Sunnah of the four righteously guided Caliphs. To be
    effective, Allâh the Exalted commands us to do Da’wah with
    wisdom and beautiful preaching.  Allâh the Most High  says:


    “Invite
    (all) to the Way of your Rabb with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and
    argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for your Rabb
    knows best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive
    guidance.”   (16:125)


    “And
    do not argue with the People of the Book unless it be in a way that is
    better, save with such of them as do wrong. But say, “We believe in the
    Revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to
    you.  Our God and your God is One; and it is to Him we
    submit  (in Islâm).”    (29:46)


    The
    above verses also imply that as much as possible we have to avoid
    argumentation and debate.  It is always best to invite people to
    Islâm with kind words instead of evil and insulting words.  Allâh
    (swt)  says:


    “Kind
    words and forgiving of faults are better than charity followed by
    injury.  And Allâh is  Rich (Free of all wants) and He is
    most Forbearing.”    (2:263)


    “Allâh
    does not love the utterance of evil words in public except by one who
    has been wronged. Allâh is  He Who hears and knows all
    things.''   (4:148)


    Certainly
    utterance of evil words is from Satan.  Allâh (swt) further tells
    us:


    “Say
    to My servants that they should (only) say those things that are best:
    for Satan does sow dissension among them: for Satan is to man an avowed
    enemy.”   (17:53)


    To avoid
    argumentation and debate, we should refrain from making use of the
    Bible and other sources that claimed to be “the Word of God” or
    “inspired”. The use of the Bible in doing Da’wah to Christians,
    in most cases, turns the Da’wah  session or lecture into
    argumentation and debate. Instead of listening, most Christian audience
    naturally become defensive; thereby, creating an unfriendly
    atmosphere.  Once we resort to Bible, we allow Satan to interfere
    in the course of our Da’wah. As much as possible, we Du’at
    must refrain from quoting verses from the Bible as it is not the
    Divine Message from Allâh (swt).   Allâh the Almighty has
    commanded us to obey Him and His Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.). He
    has enjoined upon us to know that His Messenger’s duty was to convey
    the Message in the clearest manner, which he successfully did for our
    guidance:


    “Obey Allâh and obey the Messenger and beware (of evil): if you do turn
    back know you that it is Our
    Messenger’s duty to convey
    (the Message) in the clearest manner.”
     (5:92)


    “(We
    sent them) with Clear Signs and Scriptures and We have sent down unto
    you (O, Muhammad also) the Message; that you may explain clearly to men
    what is sent for them, and that they may give thought.”  
    (16:44)


    “How
    should they have the reminder.  Seeing that a Messenger explaining
    things clearly has (already) come to them.”    (44:13)

    Anas

    (
    r.a.)
    narrated that whenever the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    spoke a sentence (said a thing), he used to repeat it thrice so that
    the people could understand it properly from him and whenever he asked
    permission to enter, (he knocked the door) thrice with greeting.” 
    (Bukhâri  1/95)

    ‘Aishah
    (radhiallâhu anha) narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    used to talk so clearly that if somebody wanted to count the number of
    his words, he could do so.” (Bukhâri  4/768 and Muslim)


    Furthermore,
    the Prophet
    (s.a.w.s.) advised
    us to speak what is good and not to hurt or insult others.  He
    also enjoined us not to be angry:

    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
     said,
    “Whoever  believes in Allâh and  the last day should talk
    what is good or keep quiet; and whoever  believes in Allâh
    and  the last day should  not hurt (or insult his neighbor;
    and whoever  believes in Allâh and  the last day should
    entertain his guest generously.”  (Bukhâri 8/ 485 and Muslim 3/
    4286)

    ‘Aishah
    (radhiallâhu anha) narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “The most hated person in the sight of Allâh is  the most
    quarrelsome person.”    (Bukhâri  8/ 637)

    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that Allâh’s Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “The strong is not the one who overcomes the people by his
    strength, but the strong is the one who controls himself while in
    anger.”  (Bukhâri 8 /135 and Muslim 4/6311-6314)


    Abu
    Hurairah

    (r.a.) 
    narrated that a man said to the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.),
    “Advise
    me! The Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “Do
    not be angry and furious.”  The man asked (the same) again and
    again, and the Prophet said in each case, “Do not be angry and
    furious.”  (Bukhâri 8/137)

     


    VIII.
    Supplications for Useful
    Knowledge


    For our
    complete success, we must strive hard to learn authentic knowledge of
    Islam, which is the Qur’an and the Sunnah and the right deductions from
    these two revealed sources of knowledge. In this way, we can practice
    it correctly and share what we know of Islam to others --  all for
    the pleasure of Allâh the Almighty. Let us supplicate to Allah for
    knowledge and wisdom with the supplications from the Qur'an and
    authentic Ahâdîth:


    “Rabbi
    zidni ilma.”
    (“O
    my Rabb! Increase me in knowledge.” ) (20:114)


    “Rabbi
    habliy hukman, walhiqniy bissaalihiyn, waj-'aliy lisana ssidqin fiyl
    akhirin, waj-'alniy miw warathati jannatin na'im
    .”
     (“O my Rabb!  Bestow wisdom on me, and join me with the
    righteous; grant me honorable mention on the tongue of truth among the
    latest (generations); make me one of the inheritors of the Garden of
    Bliss.”)  (26:83-84)


    Umm
    Salamah (Radhiallâhu anha) narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    used to say after the dawn prayer, "Allâhumma inni as’aluka ‘ilman naafi
    an, wa rizqan
    tayyiban, wa ‘amalan mutaqabbalan."

    (“O Allâh, I ask You for beneficial knowledge, acceptable action, and
    good provision.”)   (Tirmidhi  2487,  Ahmad
    and  Ibn Majah, Ibn
    As-Sunni, no. 54, Ibn Mâjah no. 920.
    Its chain of transmission
    is good (Hasan), Ibn Al-Qaiyim
    2/375)


    ‘Aishah
    (radhiallâhu anha) narrated that when Allâh’s Messenger 

    (s.a.w.s.)
    awake
    at night, he said, “There is no god but You, glory be to You, O Allâh,
    I ask Your pardon for my sin and I ask You for Your mercy. O
    Allâh!  Advance me in knowledge: do not cause my heart to deviate
    (from guidance) after You have guided me, and grant me mercy from 
    Yourself; verily,  You are the Grantor.”  (Abu Dawud 5043)


    We
    must  pray to Allâh for knowledge of Islâm and other knowledge
    that would benefit us not only in this temporary world, but also in the
    eternal world to come, which we need to consider more important. When
    we pray to Allâh for other knowledge outside of Islâm, we should pray
    that such knowledge is beneficial for us. The knowledge that we seek
    outside Islâmic knowledge must strengthen our understanding and
    application of Islâm.  It should make us better Muslims and not to
    be out of Islâm. We must, therefore, refrain from knowledge that
    does not benefit us.  We should take admonition from the following
    Ahâdîth:

    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said, “It is part of the excellence of a person’s Islâm that he should
    discard that which is of no benefit to him either in this world or the
    Hereafter.”    (Tirmidhi  67)

    Abu
    Darda (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “The worst of men in the eyes of Allâh on the Day of Resurrection will
    be the scholar who does not derive benefit from his
    knowledge.”    (Tirmidhi  268)

    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that Allâh’s  Messenger

    (s.a.w.s.)
    said,
    “The knowledge from which no benefit is derived is like a treasure out
    of which nothing is spent in the cause of Allâh.”  
    (Tirmidhi  280)


    As much
    as possible, we must seek Allâh’s protection from the knowledge that
    will just destroy our faith.  We must include in our prayers and
    supplications to Allâh the Almighty that He will protect us from such
    knowledge that does not benefit us for our eternal success in the world
    to come.  This is a guidance that we must follow from the Prophet

    (s.a.w.s.)
    as
    narrated in the following Ahâdîth:

    Sa’id
    ibn Arkam (r.a.) narrated: “I am not going to say anything but only
    that which Allâh’s Messenger (
    s.a.w.s.)
    used
    to supplicate: ‘O Allâh, I seek refuge in You from incapacity, from
    sloth, from cowardice, from miserliness, decrepitude and from torment
    of the grave. O Allâh, grant to my soul the sense of righteousness and
    purify it, for You are the Best Purifier thereof.  You are the
    Protecting friend thereof, and Guardian thereof. O Allâh, I seek refuge
    in  You from the knowledge which does not benefit, from the heart
    that does not entertain the fear (of Allâh), from the soul that does
    not feel contented and the supplication that is not
    responded.’” (Muslim 6568)


    Abu
    Hurairah (r.a.) narrated that Messenger of Allâh used to say: “O Allâh,
    I seek refuge in  You from four things: knowledge which does not
    profit, a heart which is not submissive, a soul which has an insatiable
    appetite, and a supplication which is not heard.”   (Abu
    Dawud 1543)


    With
    supplications for useful knowledge and wisdom, Islam proves to be a
    complete guidance for mankind.  It offers the best education with
    relevant curriculum that develops every learner to have a well-balanced
    life -- a life that guides everyone who sincerely submits to Allah in
    Islam (according to the Qur'an and the Sunnah) to attain success,
    especially supreme success in the eternal world to come.
     


    IX. Conclusions and
    Recommendations


    All the
    Qur'anic injunctions and authentic Ahâdîth  that inspire
    and enjoin every Muslim to seek for knowledge for the pleasure of Allah
    (swt) indicate the need for Islamic education purely based on the
    Qur'an and the Sunnah. Everyone in the society needs to play
    active role in establishing schools, colleges and universities or at
    least learning centers and institutions where everyone (male or female,
    young or old) can learn authentic knowledge of Islam.  This
    is  imperative as Allah's Messenger (s.a.w.s.), the world's Great
    Teacher and Educator, has made seeking of knowledge an obligation to
    each and every Muslim (male or female):


    Anas
    Ibn Malik (r.a.) reported that Allâh’s  Messenger (s.a.w.s.)
    said,  “Seeking of knowledge is incumbent upon every Muslim (male
    or female)...”  (Ibn Majah 1/224 and Tirmidhi  218)


    Muslim
    educators, curriculum and educational policy makers need to understand
    the importance of education in truly developing every learner's total
    personality development for a well-balanced life.  It is the
    quality of life that guides one who sincerely believes and does
    righteous deeds in Islam to  attain success, especially supreme
    success in the eternal life to come.  They need to make the
    curriculum relevant to the needs of mankind by teaching the real Islam
    -- one that is based on the Qur'an and the  Sunnah or authentic Ahâdîth
    of the world's Great Educator, Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.). 
    This is an obligatory duty that needs to be fulfilled because as
    leaders in the field of education, they are accountable to provide the
    learners the necessary knowledge in fulfilling their very purpose in
    life -- to worship Allah until death or throughout their lives. 
    They need to remember that Allah's Messenger (s.a.w.s.) enjoined us to
    fulfill our accountabilities or duties to those who are under our care
    and responsibilities:

    Abdullah
    ibn Umar (r.a.) reported that he heard the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.)
    saying: “Every one of you is a guardian, and responsible for what is in
    his custody.  The ruler is a guardian of his subjects and
    responsible for them; a husband is a
    guardian of his family  and  is responsible
    for it;  a lady is a guardian of her husband’s house and is
    responsible for it, and a servant is a guardian of his master’s 
    property and is responsible for it.  A man is a guardian of his
    father’s  property and is responsible for it so all of you are
    guardians and  responsible  for  your 
    wards and things under your care (trust).” (Bukhari, 2/592,
    3/73, 7/128 and Muslim Hadith 4496)

    Muslim
    educators, curriculum and policy makers must fulfill their duties to
    make education more relevant and responsive to the needs of the Muslim
    learners.  They need to take admonition from the following hadith
    in which the Prophet (s.a.w.s.) warned those who are entrusted with the
    affairs of the Muslims but do not do their duties to uplift their
    (material and spiritual) well-being. In the life Hereafter they will be
    denied of entrance to
    Paradise:

    It
    is narrated on the authority of Abu Malih that Ubaidullah ibn Ziyad
    visited Ma’qil ibn Yasar in his illness.  Ma’qil said to
    him:  I am narrating to you a Hadith which I would have never
    narrated to you had I not been in death-bed.  I hear Allah’s
    Messenger (s.a.w.s.) say:  “A ruler who has been entrusted with
    the affairs of the Muslims, but he makes no endeavors (for the material
    and moral uplift) and does not sincerely mean (their welfare) would not
    enter
    Paradise along with them.”  (Muslim, 1/ 264)


    Verily,
    the best service that a ruler can offer to his people is Islamic
    education based on the Qur'an and the Sunnah. Likewise, educators,
    curriculum and educational policymakers can best fulfill their
    obligations if  they design Islamic curriculum based on authentic
    knowledge of Islam.


    Establishment
    of Islamic education (one that is based on the Qur'an and the Sunnah)
    is not only the responsibility of the educators, curriculum and
    educational policymakers. It is the responsibility of all. 
    Everyone in the society, the parents, teachers, learners, the
    government officials and its people must unite, pull their resources
    (be it physical, intellectual, social assets, etc.) together to come up
    with educational schools, institutions and universities that teach
    Islamic education relevant to the goal that Allah the Almighty has set
    for all mankind.  Everyone needs to  make a contribution
    towards Islam as Allah promises great rewards to any one who supports
    in bringing the Truth:


    “And
    he who brings the Truth and he who confirms (and supports) it — such
    are the men who do right. They shall have all that they wish for,
    with their Rabb (Only Cherisher and Sustainer).  Such is the
    reward of those who do good: so that Allah will remit from them (even)
    the worst in their deeds and give them their reward according to the
    best of what they have done.” (39:33-35)


    “O
    you who believe if you will support (the cause of) Allah, He will
    support you, and will make your foothold firm.”  (47:7)


    Khuraym
    Bin Fatik (r.a.) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (s.a.w.s.) said,
    “If anyone makes a contribution towards Allah’s path, seven hundred
    times as much will be recorded to his credit.”  (Tirmidhi 3826,
    1343 and Nasa’i)


    Schools,
    colleges and universities offering authentic knowledge of Islam
    (especially in Muslim countries) need to open their services to other
    Muslims and non-Muslims who are interested to learn authentic knowledge
    of Islam. This can be done through the following:


    1)
    giving more scholarships to poor but deserving students from other
    countries, especially those who do not have access to Islamic
    education, to study in their universities;


    2)
    establishing branches to other countries so that the students do not
    have to travel;


    3)
    establish linkages with other universities to offer their Islamic
    curriculum and other resources;


    4) offer
    Islamic Studies in the English language so that non-Arab speaking
    learners can easily understand and learn Islam;


    5) reach
    out worldwide using  the Internet to offer online courses or
    establish open Islamic schools, colleges and universities both in the
    English and Arabic language at affordable or minimal costs in order to
    accommodate many poor but deserving students from various countries;


    6) work
    seriously to Islamize subjects outside the Qur'an and Sunnah courses,
    which are useful in developing learner's knowledge and skills for a
    well-balanced life; and


    7)
    organize themselves to come up with an international accrediting
    organization (e.g., World Accreditation of Islamic Schools, Colleges
    and Universities) that gives accreditation or academic recognition to
    Islamic institutions that offer Islamic curriculum based on authentic
    sources (i.e., Qur'an and Sunnah).


    Muslim
    educators, curriculum and policy makers from various countries offering
    the right Islamic curriculum need to seriously consider organizing
    themselves into one body that scrutinizes or reviews the curriculum of
    interested institutions to be members of the international Islamic
    accrediting organization.  The said organization will only
    recognize or give accreditation to institutions upon appropriate review
    (i.e., make revisions, corrections suggestions) of the curriculum based
    on the Qur'an and the Sunnah.  The very proof of this is the fact
    that the Qur'an is the Criterion (2:185 and 3:3-4).  In fact, Al-Furqan
    which means the Criterion is another name for the Qur'an. It means
    “that which distinguishes truth from falsehood and right from
    wrong.”  Chapter 25 of the Qur'an is called Surah Al-Furqan
    It starts with the following verse:


    “Blessed
    is He who sent down the Criterion upon His Servant that he may be to
    the worlds  a warner.”  (Qur’an, 25:1)


    By
    implementing the suggestion to have an international accrediting
    organization of Islamic institutions and universities, Muslims who
    truly adhere to the Qur'an and the Sunnah as well as those who want to
    follow True Islam will be guided to the right Islamic
    institutions.  They will be protected from taking Islamic Studies
    in various universities, especially in the west and non-Islamic
    countries that offer Islamic Studies and similar fields, which are not
    actually based on authentic knowledge of Islam.


    In
    addition, private individuals, organizations and institutions who are
    educationally and economically capable to establish Islamic schools,
    colleges and universities based on the right Islamic curriculum can be
    accredited worldwide through the international Islamic accreditation
    organization.  This will encourage more Muslims, especially those
    in non-Muslim countries or Muslim countries but are governed by secular
    educational policy-makers, to establish more Islamic schools and
    institutions.


    It is
    time to come up with international Islamic accreditation organization
    so that Muslims will not be dependent with existing non-Muslim
    accrediting associations. Muslims need to have an international
    independent body to accredit Islamic schools, colleges and universities
    worldwide. Accreditation must be based on the authenticity of the
    curriculum and the learning materials (textbooks and references),
    quality and effectiveness of teaching methodologies as well as delivery
    method of instructions, and qualifications of teachers and
    professors.  All these will contribute toward quality, relevant
    and responsive Islamic education -- the kind of education that will
    awaken mankind to adhere to the Qur'an and the Sunnah; and thus,
    develop every learner who studies Islam with the best personality for a
    well-balanced life and success.


    To
    attain more responsive and relevant education for all Muslims and
    non-Muslims who are interested to learn the Truth and attain success,
    Muslims need to: 1) increase their Faith by learning Islam in its
    purest form; 2) apply the knowledge in their day to day lives; 3)
    unite, help one another, full their resources together to share
    knowledge of Islam to others (Muslims and non-Muslims); and 4) be
    patient and consistent in the course of learning Islam, applying it,
    organizing or joining together to be able to share authentic Islamic
    knowledge to others and the rest of mankind.  In this way Muslims,
    by the Grace of Allah, will become assets to their respective societies
    in promoting well-balanced life; and hence, development in this world
    and supreme success in the eternal world.  This is a divine
    guidance that Allah the Exalted gives us when He says:


    “By
    the time, verily man is in loss, except such as have Faith, and do
    righteous deeds, and join together in the mutual enjoining of Truth,
    and of patience and constancy.”  (Qur’an, 103:1-3)


    Time has
    come that we Muslims must be conscious of our duty to Allah (swt) to
    worship Him sincerely according to the Qur'an and the Sunnah by working
    together to implement Islamic Education in its purest form.  In
    this way, we attain success both in this world and in the eternal life
    Hereafter. 


    May
    Allah, the Almighty, bless all mankind with Islam by making the Qur'an
    and the Sunnah prevail in all existing Islamic schools, colleges and
    universities worldwide. May He accept this work as a good deed worthy
    of His rewards, especially in the Hereafter and save  my parents,
    my family, Muslims who in one way or the other have contributed in this
    work, those who follow and invite others to follow the Prophet
    (s.a.w.s) and me from the torment of the Hell-Fire.  Ameen.

     

    Dr. Norlain
    bint Muhammad Dindang
    Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
    August
    27, 2003
    (Jumada Al-Thani 29, 1424)

     

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