Good and Bad Religious Scholars

view detailsThe Pitfalls of [Sacred] Knowledge, and an Explanation of
the Scholars of Evil and the Scholars of the Hereafter
[translated from Mukhtasar Minhaj al-Qasidin,
which is Ahmad al-Maqdisi’s summary of Ibn al-Jawzi’ abridgment of
al-Ghazzali’s Ihya’ `Ulum al-Din]
The Scholars of Evil are those whose aim in [acquiring] knowledge is to obtain comfort in the world, and to attainment worldly rank in the eyes of people.  Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) has narrated that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) said,
“Whoever learns knowledge by which the Countenance of Allah should be sought, yet learns it only to attain some worldly provision, will not find the fragrance of Heaven on the Day of Resurrection.” [Abu Dawud]
And in another hadith, [it is narrated] that he said,
“Whoever learns knowledge in order to vie thereby with the scholars, or to argue thereby with the foolish, or to turn people’s faces towards him [in admiration] thereof, shall be in the Fire.”[Tirmidhi, He clasified it as weak.]
There are many ahadith about this. Some of the salaf said, “The most regretful person at [the time of] death is a neglectful scholar.” Read more