Guest post by Madiha Akhtar
Once my husband said, “Whenever you find yourself in a conservation, try to take something beneficial from it, something that can help you”. I know it sounds philosophical but the application that I saw him practice is what makes this a golden rule to live by. Let me explain further with examples.
I went to visit my grandparents and my husband accompanied me. After asking the usual questions of “how are you and kids, health, job” etc., my grandfather started to talk about his travel experiences. Right after that my husband asked him, “What do you think was their greatest strength and weakness?”. I looked at his face and then at my grandfather’s and was totally indulged in the way my grandfather explained what he found key to their success. A whole new paradigm of discussion opened up which was both interesting and beneficial.
So here is how he does it. In every gathering he asks questions which are related to the topic as well as the knowledge of the audience. This is the ultimate trick to learn from others’ years of experience. Let me share with you some more examples.
In a gathering of moms you can ask the question, “What is the single most important thing that one can give to their children?” or to a grandmother, “What is the one thing you never compromised on when it came to your children?”.
When accompanied by someone who loves cooking , “What is the simplest yet nutritious dish you make?”. In a group of friends, “How do you handle the situation when your husband is angry but you don’t know the cause?”.
So my dear friends, this is the key to learning. Now I enjoy having conversations and even making small talk with strangers when waiting in a queue or reception as I have found a way to tap others’ wisdom. Lastly, I will add just one more thing that most of the sins related to tongue are because of excessive talking and sometimes to avoid an awkward silence in the drawing room, we end up talking uselessly. SO THINK AHEAD!
Repeats: Ahadith 736 – 737.
Narrated Abu Hazim bin Dinar:
Some people went to Sahl bin Sad As-Sa’idi and told him that they had different opinions regarding the wood of the pulpit. They asked him about it and he said, “By Allah, I know of what wood the pulpit was made, and no doubt I saw it on thy very first day when Allah’s Apostle I took his seat on it. Allah’s Apostle sent for such and such an Ansari woman (and Sahl mentioned her name) and said to her, ‘Order your slave-carpenter to prepare for me some pieces of wood (i.e. pulpit) on which I may sit at the time of addressing the people.’ So she ordered her slave-carpenter and he made it from the tamarisk of the forest and brought it (to the woman). The woman sent that (pulpit) to Allah’s Apostle who ordered it to be placed here. Then I saw Allah’s Apostle praying on it and then bowed on it. Then he stepped back, got down and prostrated on the ground near the foot of the pulpit and again ascended the pulpit. After finishing the prayer he faced the people and said, ‘I have done this so that you may follow me and learn the way I pray.’ “
Related post here.
I have done this so that you may follow me and learn the way I pray.
Understanding these words properly can suffice us inshaAllah. ^
What did Prophet (SAW) do but to teach us the right way to go about things? His life was a mission – to teach, to deliver the message. So learn. Learn. Learn! Learn from the Prophet (SAW). Learn from those who follow him. Learn from those who love him. Learn about him, his life, his mission, his journey, his everything.
`Ilm – giving or taking – is noble, bro. It honors a person. This is what made Adam (AS) the ‘best of creation’. Because this is how Allah (SWT) sort of defended him in this incident:
And [mention, O Muhammad], when your Lord said to the angels, “Indeed, I will make upon the earth a successive authority.” They said, “Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?” Allah said, “Indeed, I know that which you do not know.”
And He taught Adam the names – all of them. Then He showed them to the angels and said, “Inform Me of the names of these, if you are truthful.”
They said, “Exalted are You; we have no knowledge except what You have taught us. Indeed, it is You who is the Knowing, the Wise.”
He said, “O Adam, inform them of their names.” And when he had informed them of their names, He said, “Did I not tell you that I know the unseen [aspects] of the heavens and the earth? And I know what you reveal and what you have concealed.”
[Surah al-Baqarah: 30-33]
And this is why the angels were made to bow down (in honor) before him. This `Ilm. So learn, will you?
P.S. ‘learning’ and ‘gathering information’ are two different things. Look it up. :)
Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah:
Mu’adh used to pray with the Prophet and then go and lead his people (tribe) in the prayer.
Prophet (SAW) used to lead the prayer. Mu`adh (RA) prayed behind him, learnt his ways. Then he used to go back to his own tribe and lead them in the same prayer. So he used to pray (for instance) `Ishaa’ twice? :O
Not really. One can do as Mu`adh did, and make intention for nafl prayer. So if you prayed the `Ishaa’ prayer in a mosque, then you go somewhere and people ask you to lead them in `Ishaa’ prayer because you are the most knowledgeable among them, you may do so. Just make the intention that these four rak`aat will be nafl on your part and fardh for the rest.
Question: why did Mu`adh go through the trouble? Couldn’t someone else lead the prayer in his tribe?
Well, no one else was as knowldgeable and as wise as Mu`adh (RA). And he was among the tribe chieftain as well. So he had to be the Imaam of the masjid there as well. That’s how it was back then. Ministers in parliament were Imaams in the masjid. <3
You. Learn, and then lead. The process goes on in a cycle. You can never learn enough. So keep at it! :)