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5 Lessons from Surah Al-Kahf for All Students of Knowledge

There are many lessons a student of knowledge can learn from Musa and Khidr (alayhimassalam)’s meeting which is detailed in Surah Al-Kahf. Here are 5:

1. Travelling for Knowledge & Zeal for Knowledge

Musa (‘alayhissalam) was prepared to travel a great distance for knowledge, scholars have mentioned that he might have travelled on both land and sea in order to meet Khidr (‘alayhissalam). He showed great enthusiasm and zeal in search of knowledge.

18:60 And [mention] when Musa said to his servant, “I will not cease [traveling] until I reach the junction of the two seas or continue for a long period.”

Students of knowledge should be prepared to travel to seek knowledge and endure all the hardships associated with travel. Today, there are plenty of resources available online but there is a special connection to knowledge attained when it is sought in the real world with teachers live and teach the Sunnah.

2. Enduring Hardships

The journey was not easy and Musa (‘alayhissalam) along with his servant endured much hardship seeking knowledge.

18:62 – So when they had passed beyond it, [Musa] said to his boy, “Bring us our morning meal. We have certainly suffered in this, our journey, [much] fatigue.”

A student of knowledge may face many hardships and challenges whilst seeking knowledge but this should not stop him/her from pursuing knowledge.

3. Showing Humility

Although Musa (‘alayhissalam) was higher in rank than Khidr (‘alayhissalam), he showed humility and spoke courteously with Khidr (‘alayhissalam) as he wanted to learn from him some knowledge which he did not know.

18:66 – Musa said to him, “May I follow you on [the condition] that you teach me from what you have been taught of sound judgement?”

Students of knowledge should not belittle anyone no matter how much they know.

4. Complying with the Teacher’s (Reasonable) Requests

Musa (‘alayissalam) complied with strict conditions set by Khidr (‘alayhissalam) even though he was a Prophet of Allah.

18:69 – [Musa] said, “You will find me, if Allah wills, patient, and I will not disobey you in [any] order.”

Students of knowledge should comply with their teacher’s instructions as long as they are reasonable.

5. Exercising Patience

Khidr (‘alayhissalam) did things which seemingly to Musa (‘alayhissalam), contravened the laws of Allah and as a Prophet of Allah he could not help but speak out. When reminded of the agreement he made that he would would not speak out, he patiently submitted to Khidr (‘alayhissalam)’s request.

18:73 – [Musa] said, “Do not blame me for what I forgot and do not cover me in my matter with difficulty.”

Students of knowledge should also exercise patience. If they don’t understand something they should persevere and seek more clarity.

The Qur’an is filled with oceans of wisdom and inspiration, such stories are there as lessons for us. It also details the approach we should take when setting out to study sacred knowledge. May Allah give us the tawfiq to learn beneficial knowledge from the correct sources with its correct understanding. Ameen

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Written by Rafiq ibn Jubair

Rafiq ibn Jubair is the founder and Director of IlmFeed. He is a graphic designer and digital marketing specialist by profession. Rafiq is also a graduate of the Islamic Sciences and has Ijazas (formal authorisation) in Hadith, Tafsir and Fiqh amongst other subjects.

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