O student of knowledge

O student of knowledge, I exhort you to purify your intention in pursuing knowledge and to strive to make your soul act according to knowledge’s dictates. For the science is a tree of which deeds are the fruit, and he is not counted learned, who doesn’t put his learning into practice. And did those of the Salaf of the past reach whatever high levels they reached, other than by purified beliefs, righteous deeds, and renouncing most of the refinements of the world? And did the wise people of the past attain greater felicity except through hard work and diligence, contentment with little, and spending of their superfluity to meet the need of the needy and destitute? Surely, he who gathers books of knowledge is no different than he who gathers gold and silver. Surely, the devourer of books is no different from the greedy miser. Surely, the bibliophile enamoured with books is no different from the hoarder of gold and silver. Therefore, just as wealth doesn’t benefit except through its spending, likewise do the sciences not benefit except those who put them into practice and observes the requirements. – Imam Khatib al-Baghdadi in his Iqtida’ al-‘Ilm al-‘Amal


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