Instructing the Student on How to Open the Gates of Knowledge and Comprehension
by Muhammad ibn ash-Shaykh ‘Alee ibn Aadam al-Ityoobee
Translated by Aboo Shaybah
A short poem containing vital guidelines for a student to follow from the onset of learning
and throughout the duration of study. (Taken from al-Fawaa’id as-Samiyyah, pg.28-29)
Instructing the Student on How to Open of the Gates of Knowledge and Comprehension
 To anyone who desires to open the gates of knowledge
and become outstanding in comprehension:
 Observe Taqwaa of Allaah and adhere to the Sunan,
and remain far away from people of notoriety and turmoil.
 And tread, in your conduct, the course of the Salaf,
and stay away from the innovations of the Khalaf;
 for every good lies in following the Salaf
and every ill lies in the innovations of the Khalaf.
 To anyone who desires to lead others
in knowledge, spreading its good to all:
 Stay sincere to your Lord and set your standards high,
and you shall find yourself gifted with aptitude.
 The effort comes from you, and then opening the gates
comes from your Lord, the All-Acquainted Watcher, the Bestower.
 He promised guidance to those who strive and struggle
saying: “We shall most certainly guide them,” so seek direction from this.
 However, effort alone will be futile
if not completed by the opening from Him.
 Thus, may Allaah, the Most Generous, have mercy upon anyone who
in a time like this devotes himself
 to seeking this noble knowledge, turning away
from all distraction, and rejecting the lowly;
 embarking in earnest, kneeling down
before the possessors of guidance, attentively listening;
 writing everything that he hears,
noting all the points that which will be to his advantage;
 memorizing and revising what he recorded
with his esteemed, guiding peers;
 that is the one who will have the gates opened for him
by his Lord, who removes all barriers.
 We ask You, O Allaah, to bless us
with knowledge, Taqwaa, and Jannah – the abode of happiness.