Imam Zijad’s Corner: KNOWLEDGE IN ISLAM

Imam Zijad’s Corner: KNOWLEDGE IN ISLAM
Knowledge (‘ilm) – proper understanding of knowledge (text & context) – education and transmission is means of conceptualizing the notion of faith in action…its scope and methodology.
Knowledge and actions are the inseparable twins of our faith, and are a core part of our FAITH – belief system. In Islam, knowledge (`ilm) and action (`amal) are inherently and inevitably tied together, complementing one another.
For any action to be correct, it has to be based on true knowledge. At the same time, the knowledge that is not put into practice is of no benefit, regardless of how correct that knowledge might be. So having a library of information in our heads and not applying it or not knowing how to apply it becomes useless.
This is why the best among people are those whom God has blessed to successfully bring together knowledge and action in their lives.
One of the most important priorities in the consideration of the Islamic law is the priority of knowledge before action. Knowledge comes before action and is its guide. It is reported that Mu’ath ibn Jabal said: “Knowledge is a leader and action is its follower.”
Our earlier predecessors in their writings have placed a section of knowledge before action. Commentators stated that what they meant by this was that knowledge is a condition for correctness of action, thus, it is not acceptable without knowledge. Knowledge precedes action so that the intention can be correct, thereby correcting the action.
The final end of knowledge is not knowledge in itself! Knowledge is means towards the end – the end being the application of it through personal closeness – nearness to God (that means dearness to Him) and benefits to the people and the society.
One of the potential dangers of knowledge is when knowledge is manipulated, twisted or hidden (all these forms of abuse of knowledge are forbidden in Islam).