19 February 2014 CE | 17 Rabbi al-Thanni 1435 AH

Hadith Explanation

Highest Levels for the Ulama

The Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said to his Companions (radi Allahu anhum): “Should I tell you who the best dwellers of Paradise are?” The noble Companions (radi Allahu anhum) said: “Yes, O Messenger of Allah! Do tell us.” He (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “The Ulama (religious scholars) of my Ummah.” [Minhaaj ul Abideen by Imam Ghazzali]

Depending on whether the Ulama are true Ulama or evil Ulama they can be the inhabitants of the highest levels of Paradise or the worst places in Hell. What are the two signs of true Ulama?

1. They practice what they preach. Knowledge without action thereon is useless. Knowledge is like a tree and worship (action accordingly) is like its fruit. A tree without fruit loses its importance.

2. They are out of favour with the enemies of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). The truer an Alim is to Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) the more the disbelievers and hypocrites will hate, malign and try to wipe out his existence. If Allah’s enemies are comfortable with an Alim, suspect his allegiance, for common sense tells us that it is not possible to be friends with your best friend’s enemies.

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