From Abu Musaa al-Asbaree (RA), from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said:
"The example of guidance and knowledge with which AIlaah has sent me is like abundant rain falling on the earth, some of which was fertile soil that absorbed rain-water and brought forth vegetation and grass in abundance. (And) another portion of it was hard and held the rainwater and AIlaah benefited the people with it and they utilised it for drinking, making their animals drink from it and to irrigate the land for cultivation. (And) a portion of it was barren which could neither hold the water nor bring forth vegetation (then that land gave no benefits). The first is the example of the person who comprehends AIlaah's religion and benefits (from the knowledge), which AIlaah has revealed through me and learns and then teaches it to others. (The last example is that of a) person who does not care for it and does not accept Allaah's guidance which I have been sent with (he is like that barrenand.)" (Bukhaaree)
The Reporter of the Hadeeth
Abu Musaa al-Asharee, Abdullaah bin Oais bin Saleem bin Hadaar, the famous Companion. He emigrated to Makkah, then to Ethiopia and then to Madinah. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) sent him as an envoy to Yemen.
He was brave, scholarly and active. Umar bin al-Khataab placed him in charge of Kufah and Basrah. He conquered al-Ahwaaz, Asbahaan and numerous other cities.
He died in the year 50 A.H. (RA).
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) put forth a similitude between that which he came with from the deen and between the rain which comes to the people while they are in need of it.
This was the state of the people before he was sent. So just as the rain gives life to the dead land then similarly revelation from Allaah gives life to the dead hearts.
He, the Most High, said:
"Is he who was dead (without Faith) and We gave him life (by knowledge and Faith) and set for him a light (of belief) whereby he can walk amongst men -like him who is in darkness (of disbelief) from which he can never come out?" (06:122)
So the 'light' mentioned here is the light of revelation and the 'darkness' is the darkness of ignorance, disbelief and misguidance.
Then he (peace and blessings be upon him) likened those who hear that which he came with to the differing types of earth upon which the rain falls:
- So amongst them is the scholar, the one who does good deeds and teaches others.
His status is like the good earth, which absorbed (rain) so it benefitted itself and produced plantation, which benefitted others.
- Amongst them is the one who gathers knowledge and strives hard in attaining it but he does not act on its recommended deeds or that which he gathers does not benefit him he conveys it to others. His status is like the earth upon which the water lingers so the people take benefit from it, and he indicated this in his saying:"May Allaah illuminate a man who heard my speech, then memorised it, then conveyed itjust as he had heard it
- And amongst them is the one who listens to knowledge but does not memorise it nor acts upon it nor conveys it to others. Then his status is like the swampy or smooth earth, which cannot accept water or it spoils the water for others.
He (peace and blessings be upon him) linked the first two praised groups due to the benefit that is derived from both of them. And he singled out the third blame worthy group due to the lack of benefit from it.
So it is obligatory upon you, O Muslim brother, to seek the prophetic knowledge and act upon it, May Allaah elevate you with it.
He, the Most High, said:
"Allaah will exalt in degree those of you who believe, and those who have been granted knowledge." [al-Mujaadilah:11]
"Say; Are those who know equal to those who know not?" [Az-Zumar:9]
And it is obligatory upon you is to act upon it and give dawah to it. He, the Most High, said:
"And who is better in speech than he who invites to Allaah's religion and does righteous good deeds and says: "1 am one of the Muslims." (41 :33)
So strive to be from the first type, those wh 0 acce pt th e Iig ht, which Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) came with, so that it illuminates and gives life to your heart since a correct and good life cannot be attained except by it.
And take every precaution against being from the third type, the one does not accept the guidance of Allaah, and is not raised by it to an elevated status.