In this lesson, Shaykh Faraz gives an overview of the first chapter from Imam Ghazali’s Ihya Uloom ud-Din, the chapter on knowledge. Shaykh Faraz explains Imam Ghazali’s statement that “the purpose of religion is knowledge – knowing Allah”.
Shaykh Faraz further explains that all the forms of religion require knowledge. A believer needs to know how to submit to Allah, how to seek Allah, and how to be sincere and beloved to Allah. He also gives some definitions of knowledge, and which knowledge Imam Ghazali is referring to. Shaykh Faraz also discerns between knowledge which is personally obligatory and that which is communally obligatory.
Finally, Shaykh Faraz highlights that knowledge is sought through adab. The fruits of knowledge is becoming a “Lordly scholar”, who is able to turn their heart to Allah and help guide others to Allah as well. The great opportunity of knowledge is that it is the Prophetic inheritance. Action without knowledge is toil without fruit. Therefore, through knowledge one is able to fulfill the potential that Allah has created us for and called us to.
In this brief overview of Imam Ghazali’s opus magnum, Ihya Uloom ud-Din (Renewing the Religious Sciences), this series will serve as blueprint for how the believer can bring to life their religion. It will aim to help the believer to not just practice the form of the religion properly, but to also practice it with excellence.
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