In the following hadith the Messenger of Allah (Salla’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) draws a comparison for our understanding and make clear the example of knowledge and its recipients.

The Messenger of Allah (Salla’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said:

The example of the guidance and knowledge with which Allah has sent me is like the example of profuse rain that falls on a portion of land.

Some part of this land is fertile and soft, thus it grows grass and fodder in abundance.

Another part of it is hard but holds the water, and Allah benefits the people through it: they drink from it themselves, water their animals and irrigate their crops.

And the water falls on another type of land. This land is flat—it cannot hold water nor grow any food.

This (the first two) is the example of the person who gains a deep understanding of the Deen of Allah and is benefitted by the knowledge with which I was sent. He learns and is a cause for others to learn.

And (the latter is) the example of the one who doesn’t lift his head up to the knowledge and doesn’t accept the guidance given by Allah with which I was sent.

What we can learn from the hadith

– We all are exposed to knowledge. What matters is what we do with it.

– Some try their hardest to learn as much as possible. They also act on their knowledge and try to improve their lives and connection with Allah. They can benefit others too along with themselves.

– Some learn knowledge but do not act upon it. They may benefit others by their lectures and writings, but do not try to improve themselves at the same time.

– Some do not feel the need to study further, and thus become deprived of the benefit Allah has put in the knowledge with which He sent His Messenger (Salla’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).

– Our Messenger (Salla’Llahu’ alayhi wa sallam) predicted with his timeless example how knowledge will be treated by its people, as can be seen today too. We all fall under one of the three categories he mentioned.

– We should constantly aspire to be in the first category though by:

1) Trying to always gain more knowledge than we already have
2) Acting on the knowledge we have learnt as much as possible
3) Finding out ways to improve ourselves and our connection with Allah
4) Passing on the knowledge to others by teaching, propagating and delivering lectures.

May Allah give us the ability to bring the above four lessons we learn from this hadith into our lives. Ameen.

– Written by Abdullah (SiblingsOfIlm)