Hadith on Learning: The Command to Seek Knowledge

📖Sunan Ibn Majah 224
It was narrated from Anas bin Malik that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Seeking knowledge is a duty upon every Muslim, and he who imparts knowledge to those who do not deserve it, is like one who puts a necklace of jewels, pearls and gold around the neck of swines.”

This hadith from Sunan Ibn Majah highlights the importance of seeking knowledge in Islam. Here are some key lessons we can learn from this narration:

  1. Knowledge is obligatory: The hadith emphasizes that seeking knowledge is a duty upon every Muslim. This highlights the significance Islam places on acquiring knowledge, both religious and worldly.
  2. Knowledge is valuable: The analogy used in the hadith portrays knowledge as something precious, symbolized by a necklace made of jewels, pearls, and gold. This indicates that knowledge is highly valuable and should be treated as such.
  3. Knowledge should be shared appropriately: The second part of the hadith cautions against imparting knowledge to those who do not deserve it. It draws a comparison between giving knowledge to undeserving individuals and putting a precious necklace on the neck of swines. This signifies that knowledge should be shared with those who will appreciate and benefit from it.
  4. Discrimination in sharing knowledge: The hadith indirectly encourages discernment in sharing knowledge. It suggests that individuals should be mindful of who they share knowledge with, ensuring it is conveyed to those who will value and make good use of it.

Overall, this hadith emphasizes the duty of Muslims to seek knowledge and highlights the importance of sharing knowledge responsibly with deserving recipients. It encourages a discerning and thoughtful approach to knowledge acquisition and dissemination within the Islamic context.