Reaching for the stars in the acquisition of ilm is not just the collection and study of ilm with a teacher or from books. In the search for excellence in aspiring to be learned in the ilm of Deen, a student has to learn to receive and express the dynamics of interaction in a manner which is conducive to the facilitation of learning with his or her teacher, this is called ADAB. Without adab learning does not stick, it is water off a ducks back.

Here is what I learned from the orientation of the course I am starting with Qibla explained by Ustadh Hatim Yusuf.


  1. Have a good intention. Intend to please Allah in every thing that we do
  2. Do not miss the live session! If the student misses a class the desire leaves the teacher to teach them, he wants to teach students other than the one who missed the class and relied on other ways of making up.
  3. If the scholar misses classes the students lose the desire to learn, there is barakah in the live session, you feel you are in a class and there is interaction.
  4. If you ever miss a class weep! If you do not you will not benefit
  5. Prepare for the class, review the previous class notes, read Quran, dhikr, get your ruh (soul) ready for the class, if you do unrelated stuff (like random surfing of the internet) your ruh is then not in sync with the subject being taught.
  6. Come before the teacher. This is the adab of the teacher.
  7. If you are late do not distract the teacher (not even salaam to people engaged in knowledge) write an email to the teacher later. Do not send the chatbox messages pertaining to excuses as to why you are late, as it distracts students and teacher from the subject.
  8. Show gratitude, love and thankfulness for the teacher.
  9. Be attentive, do not multitask and do other things simultaneously (e.g. texting)

10. Take notes: more important than handouts, listen and write this also shows & allows focused listening

11. Ask Questions: This does not mean we bombard the teacher with questions and exclude everyone else from the discussion.

12. Review of the Class: is important is for one who wants to excel

13. Read other material relevant to the course.  Broaden your reading not just course notes, take notes regarding your reading and ask questions arising from that reading.

14. Cooperate and try to help others in the class

Imam Haddad was asked: How can I surpass all my peers? And let no one else ahead of me
If you want to surpass all your peers then have the wish for your peers to surpass you…………be selfless!

*** Image courtesy of: http://joshberer.wordpress.com/2009/08/06/adab-ya-hua/

Posted in ILM

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