Knowledge needed to build a better civilisation

By Ahmad Sissoho & Aliaa Nur Diyana

GOMBAK, 17 November 2022:  A good and strong civilisation is based on knowledge and education was highlighted in a forum entitled “IQRA: Journey of a Knowledge Seeker” organised by the Alumni Relations Division of IIUM on Tuesday (15 November 2022).

It can be seen through Islamic civilisation that the seeking and spreading of knowledge by Muslims was at its peak. The reason behind this is Islam prioritises the importance of knowledge in the life of a believer. 

IIUM alumnus, Dr. Zakir Ahmed, shared his understanding on the importance and benefit of seeking and practicing knowledge for Muslims to students. 

“Knowledge translates into action and knowledge will make us better people. The more knowledge we get, the humbler we become,” he added. 

The feeling of humility is important, and the feeling of pride should be abstained by Muslims.

“Seeking knowledge is also a sign of being grateful to Allah s.w.t, as all human beings are born with nothing and are later given knowledge and understanding by Him, and they should read and seek more knowledge because there are a lot of advantages rather than disadvantages for people by doing so,” he said.

According to Dr Zakir Ahmed, we must take advantage of seeking knowledge through various forms, be it in the form of sacred knowledge or acquired knowledge, as both forms work together hand in hand.

He praised IIUM for successfully integrating both of these forms of knowledge in education and reassured that all IIUM students are on the righteous path regardless of the Kulliyyah they belong to.

He further remarked, by the end of day, all of these forms of knowledge (ilm) come from Allah s.w.t through Iqra (to read) and the other main point of Iqra that is to act. 

This explains the significant relationship between knowledge (ilm) and action (aml) as they are not only linguistically formed based on three similar Arabic alphabets but function together interchangeably. Hence, all types of knowledge should be translated to action. 

Furthermore, according to Dr. Zakir, “Innamal a’malu binniyat” (check your intention) depicts that seeking knowledge should be with the intention of increasing knowledge for the sake of Allah s.w.t as well as to serve for the betterment of the world and to be the benefactor of human beings instead of merely for recognition, popularity, and competition. 

Eventually, we will be able to find balance between achieving what is in the dunya and the hereafter with proper intentions, Dr. Zakir explained.  

His speech left a reminder for IIUM students to never take knowledge for granted especially during their study period in IIUM.*** 

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