Man’s Best Friend: Books

Ibn al-Jawzi (rahmatullahi ‘alayhi) once said:

“If I were to describe my state, then I am never content with reading books, and when I see a book that I had not seen before, it is as if I have found a treasure. … And if I said that I read 20,000 books, then in truth it would be more, and I was then still a student.

I benefited from reading those books by observing the lives of the early people and the extent of their memorization, their determination, their worship, the diversity of their disciplines, of which one would not know had one not read those books. Thus I disliked the current state of people and looked down on the weak determination of students nowadays. And to Allah is all praise.”

(from “The Value of Time” by Shaykh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghuddah)


(Courtesy of At-Talib)



Filed under Islam, Religion, Seeking knowledge

5 responses to “Man’s Best Friend: Books

  1. Al Majnunah

    Well easy to say if we may have determination but no shaykh i am wonderning how we can get knowledge then

    And even when one listen to lectures…If scholars do not answer your questions how then can one be sure he/she correctly understood !

    Anyway maybe we’re in this time that the prophet( saw) said there will be a lot of people who will ask questions and few scholars.

    Accessing ‘ilm is even more difficult for women as all scholars are male and they are all afraid from fitna…Think of it how many women Faqihat do you know currently in the world, can you cite some names of great Qari’at, great Muhadithat not of the past but currently ???? And then they expect to have pious children !

    Really May Allah save me from this world. Ameeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen


  2. ibn ayyub

    as-salamu ‘alaykum

    I totally agree you. Even brothers are faced with the same problem, where they have the zeal and interest to study the deen, but there aren’t those facilities and scholars available to guide them. Where I live there are about 80 ‘ulema and huffaz. Despite this nobody has got the time to hold classes for brothers let alone sisters. I have had an ‘alim sincerely say to my face that don’t ask fulan ‘alim to teach you arabic, because we haven’t the time. To be fair it’s not entirely their fault. The times we live in are such that it’s very difficult to make time to enter into such ventures. They too have families and bills to pay. It’s just a sorry situation. Many of these scholars are just humble people who try to do what they can.

    Sisters are faced with an even dire situation. There are virtually no good places and more importantly scholars that they can turn too. The only place to turn to for them is the internet. Whether we like it or not, it is many a time a life-saver for them to learn their deen. This was one of the reasons why I had set up this blog. So that it could be a place for sisters to visit. I am not an ‘alim, not even close. But I do make a hopeless attempt to put stuff up here that may benefit myself and others insha-Allah.

    We complain that the sisters are in such a poor state, but we don’t provide the facilities for them. What else do we expect to happen! The same holds true for the brothers. The only places where there are opportunities to learn the deen is where you have these superstars and celebrities. It’s all smokes and mirrors with a distorted Islam.

    I have contemplated moving this blog to an official domain and make available eBooks, lectures etc for people to download and benefit from. wa-Allahu a’lam, whatever Allah wills will happen.

    My advice would be to read books by reliable authors. insha-Allah I do hope to start a book recommendation page with a list of must reads. Books are written by scholars, so if you haven’t got access to scholars you probably still would have access to the books by them. (Bar the expensive prices!). This is an era of free thinking do so be careful whose books you are reading.

    We are living in a time, which is the end of time. May Allah guide us and save us from the evils of our own selves.

    Allahu musta’an

    ibn ayyub

  3. Safia

    Finally, I shall have even a better excuse to stay up and read! My mother would always get annoyed that I would be up in the late hours reading different Islamic (and few non Islamic) works. I don’t mean to make my mother annoyed; I simply don’t fall asleep until very late at night. If a person is reading the right books, there is immense barakah in them. On a side note, I would strongly recommend Kimiya-I-Sa’adat (Alchemy of Eternal Bliss) by Imam Al-Ghazali.

    But I shall make duaa for both of you and the Islamic resources you have wherever you both live. I am from the Chicago and alhamdulillah, there are some resources, but many are corrupted ones.

    I do have a suggestion about setting up Arabic learning facilities. I am actually taking (well, I failed the class, so I have to repeat it) an Arabic class in which there are many different levels and teachers and students don’t pay/receive any money, but what happens is that students who agree to take the class, must come back and teach it for at least two years. That way, the school continues and students can perfect their understanding of Arabic by teaching it to others. But Sarf (verbal roots and conjugations) are killing me. But one thing my ustath/ulema pointed out is that it is nearly (99.9%) impossible to learn Arabic online. There are so many rules, exceptions, cultural connections, and so many elements in the Arabic language that you need a proper teacher. I don’t know if that helps, but it is an idea that might work in your community(s).

    But please consider putting up an authentic book list. Alhamdulillah, my house is a vast plethora of Islamic books and we have extra copies that I would be happy to give some to others. And I actually have communication with different Islamic bookstores and I think I can find some books for cheaper prices for people who are seeking knowledge. But I don’t think I can get 100s of books though.

    But let me know if there is something I can do for both of you. I am assuming you both are not from Chicago, but regardless of distance, I think there might be something I can do to help. And insha Allah, both of your communities will be in my duaa.

  4. ibn ayyub

    as-salamu ‘alaykum

    Baraka-Allah feekum for your comments on the blog. I wouldn’t say that you’ve “failed” your Arabic course. I don’t like using such words when it comes to the Deen. When you begin to work for the Deen your reward begins immediately and your efforts appreciated by Allah. One doesn’t have to wait for a piece of paper stating that you have “passed” to be rewarded by Allah.

    What may be of interest to you is that there is an Arabic course starting soon at check it out.

    Books are still books at the end of the say, so one shouldn’t over rely on them. You say you live in Chicago. There are group of ‘Ulema there that are working to impart knowledge to the people through the “Darul Hikmah Academy”. it’s just starting but they’ve got high hopes.

    ibn ayyub

  5. ibn ayyub

    as-salamu ‘alaikum

    This ties in with what we have been discussing. Please take a look at this and the comments below:

    ibn ayyub

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