Ep. 54 The Forties – Teaching the Pathways to Guidance

Al-Salam ‘Alaykum, this is Syed Ali Imran – and you are listening to the Forties podcast, brought to you by Mizan Institute.

This is episode 54 – Teaching the Pathways to Guidance

عَنْ أَبِي جَعْفَرٍ ع قَالَ: مَنْ‏ عَلَّمَ‏ بَابَ‏ هُدًى‏ فَلَهُ مِثْلُ أَجْرِ مَنْ عَمِلَ بِهِ وَ لَا يُنْقَصُ أُولَئِكَ مِنْ أُجُورِهِمْ شَيْئاً وَ مَنْ عَلَّمَ بَابَ ضَلَالٍ كَانَ عَلَيْهِ مِثْلُ أَوْزَارِ مَنْ عَمِلَ بِهِ وَ لَا يُنْقَصُ أُولَئِكَ مِنْ أَوْزَارِهِمْ شَيْئاً.

In Hadith #13: Imam Baqir (a) said: Whoever teaches a subject of guidance will receive a reward equal to the rewards of all of those who practice such guidance without any reduction in the rewards of the later ones. Whoever introduces a subject of misguidance will suffer for each time others practice it without any reduction in the suffering of whoever may practice such misguidance.

According to this narration anyone who teaches any subject or knowledge that is a source of guidance, they will receive a reward not just for teaching that guidance but also receive the reward for everyone who acts on that guidance. On the contrary, if someone teaches a subject or knowledge that is a source of misguidance, then their record of deeds will register a sin for them not just for teaching this knowledge, but also for everyone who uses that skill and acts on it.

For example, there may be people who teach someone who to gamble or how to steal something, they may teach someone how to fraud someone – similar to how many people here in the West receive phone calls from call-centers who pretend to be from the government and scam people for thousands of dollars or pounds, the people who taught these call center agents the skills to scam innocent people, they will receive a share of the sins of the agents as well.

On the contrary, imagine someone teaches people how to read the Qurān, or teaches them how to pray or give the Adhān, or teaches them the laws of Islam, or even worldly knowledge that is beneficial for them and the community – the teacher of this guidance will receive a reward every time a person acts on this knowledge and skill that was taught to them.

This narration is also a message for teachers to be sincere in their roles, to ensure that when they are teaching that they are sincere and are not seeking to cheat their students, that they give them their full time and do their due diligence to ensure students and learners learn whatever it is properly and accurately.

In the next episode, we’ll read a narration from the Prophet (p) in which he speaks of the merits of gaining religious knowledge specifically.

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