Read this following today in Mostafa al Badawi’s Introduction to Imam Haddad’s text, “Two Treatises, Mutual Reminding and Good Manners, and thought it was a powerful, needed reminder for myself. Posting to help keep the lesson close at hand.
“It is bad manners of the most sever degree to be informed that the Hereafter is immensely better than this world and is everlasting, yet prefer this world and concentrate all one’s energies therein. It is bad manners to be informed that it is possible to draw near to God, yet decide that the effort required to do so is too troublesome and so settle for the minimum necessary to barely escape the Fire. It is bad manners to be informed that some people ascertain profound knowledge of God through contemplation, yet decide that other things are more important as the objects of your concerns. It is bad manners to devote time and energy to studying the insignificant and the ephemeral, yet neglect to devote equal time (at least) in studying that which helps deliver one from chastisement in the Hereafter and from moral indifference in this life. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said “God loathes those who are learned in the affairs of this world but are ignorant of the Hereafter.”
For it behooves those who have been gifted by God with intelligence and skills to apply these gifts towards what benefits them in the most profound way, to gain knowledge and insight about the Real and the purpose He has created us. This is not to say that one should abandon the world altogether; on the contrary, Islam encourages excellence in things of this world, but not at the expense of matters related to the Hereafter and religious conduct of one’s life. Detachment from the world is a thing of the heart, a mental attitude, an objective view of prioritization, so that one does everything that is required to do but without inordinate preoccupation. As for studying the sciences of the religion., it is a duty that that no Muslim can evade. “Seeking knowledge is an obligation upon every Muslim man and woman,” said the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). This goes side by side with learning a trade, a craft or obtaining higher university degrees.”
~ Mostafa al-Badawi, Translator’s Introduction, Two Treatises: Mutual Reminding and Good Manners (by Imam Abdullah ibn Alawi al-Haddad)