Instructing the Student on How to Open the Gates of Knowledge and Comprehension

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
[1] To anyone who desires to open the gates of knowledge
and become outstanding in comprehension:
[2] Observe Taqwaa of Allaah and adhere to the Sunan,
and remain far away from people of notoriety and turmoil.
[3] And tread, in your conduct, the course of the Salaf,
and stay away from the innovations of the Khalaf;
[4] for every good lies in following the Salaf
and every ill lies in the innovations of the Khalaf.
[5] To anyone who desires to lead others
in knowledge, spreading its good to all:
[6] Stay sincere to your Lord and set your standards high,
and you shall find yourself gifted with aptitude.
[7] The effort comes from you, and then opening the gates
comes from your Lord, the All-Acquainted Watcher, the Bestower.
[8] He promised guidance to those who strive and struggle
saying: “We shall most certainly guide them,” so seek direction from this.
[9] However, effort alone will be futile
if not completed by the opening from Him.
[10] Thus, may Allaah, the Most Generous, have mercy upon anyone who
in a time like this devotes himself
[11] to seeking this noble knowledge, turning away
from all distraction, and rejecting the lowly;
[12] embarking in earnest, kneeling down
before the possessors of guidance, attentively listening;
[13] writing everything that he hears,
noting all the points that which will be to his advantage;
[14] memorizing and revising what he recorded
with his esteemed, guiding peers;
[15] that is the one who will have the gates opened for him
by his Lord, who removes all barriers.
[16] We ask You, O Allaah, to bless us
with knowledge, Taqwaa, and Jannah – the abode of happiness.