The Knowledge of ‘Ā`ishah

It is reported from Abū Mūsā Al-Ash’arī – Allah be pleased with him – that he said:

We the Companions of Allah’s Messenger – Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – never had difficulty in understanding a ḥadīth except that when we asked ‘Ā`ishah we found she had some knowledge about it.

It is reported from Masrūq – Allah have mercy on him – that he said:

We swear by Allah, we have seen senior Companions of Allah’s Messenger – Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him – asking ‘Ā`ishah about inheritance laws.

Ibn Al-Jawzī, Ṣifah Al-Ṣafwah Vol.1 p319.

Four People we shouldn’t take knowledge from

Imām Mālik – Allah have mercy on him – said:

Knowledge is not to be taken from four types of people: a foolish person who openly acts foolish, even if he reports the most narrations; an adherent of bid’ah who calls to his desires; a person who lies, even if I don’t accuse him of lying in ḥadīth; and a righteous pious worshipper who does not accurately retain what he narrates.

Al-Dhahabī , Siyar A’lām Al-Nubalā` in his biography of Imām Mālik.

Sunnah, Bid’ah and Arabic

ʿAbdullah b. Zayd Al-Numayrī reports that Al-Ḥasan Al-Baṣrī said:

They (the heretics) were destroyed by their inability in Arabic (al-‘ujmah).

Al-Bukhārī, Al-Tārīkh Al-Kabīr Vol.5 p99.

And Imām Al-Shāfi’ī said:

People didn’t become ignorant and didn’t differ amongst themselves except because they left Arabic and leaned towards the language of Aristotle.

Quoted by Al-Suyūṭī in Ṣawn Al-Manṭiq p15. He said on p22:

I have found Salaf before Al- Shāfi’ī indicate what he did: that the cause of heresy (al-ibtidā’) is ignorance of Arabic language.

A Sign of Knowledge and a Sign of Ignorance

Masrūq – Allah have mercy on him – said:

Sufficient as knowledge for a person is that he fears Allah, and sufficient as ignorance for a person is that he feels impressed with the knowledge he has.

Al-Ājurrī in Akhlāq Al-‘Ulamā’ no.40.

Masrūq was one of the major Tābi’īn, or students of the Companions. He accompanied Ibn Mas’ūd and was one of his students who became senior teachers and muftis after him. He reported from numerous other Sahābah. It is said that he was called Masrūq (literally: stolen) because he was kidnapped as a child but later recovered. He died in 62H or 63H.

Son, have you put it into practice?

‘Aṭā’ narrates that there used to be a young man who used to go to Mother of the Believers ‘Ā’ishah to ask her questions and she would narrate to him. One day, he came to her to ask her some questions. She said, “Son, have you put into practice what you hear from me yet?” He replied, “No mother, I have not.” So she said, “Son, why do you then seek to increase Allah’s proof against us and you?!”

Al-Khatīb Al-Baghdādī in Iqtidā’ Al-‘Ilm Al-‘Amal no. 92.