Anything known to us humans is knowledge. The question we most innately ask, do you ‘know’ about

this or that? – expresses our desire to know about a particular topic or my intention to increase my

knowledge in this topic. It appeals to our sense of curiosity and we serve that by asking questions.

Allah says in the Holy Quran ‘We have taught all the names to Adam’ – meaning potentially Adam or

mankind has been bestowed or blessed with all the knowledge that exists in this universe. How can this

even be possible? Well if the subject of my knowledge is cleaning my teeth – the ‘toothbrush’ I use is a

name, the ‘toothpaste’ I apply on it is a name. I use my ‘hands’ to brush my ‘teeth’ with ‘water’ – all

names. No knowledge can exist without names.

It is interesting to observe in learning any new language, the first words taught are the “nouns” or

“naming words” or “Al-Ism” followed by the “verbs” or “action” words or “fayel”. The only left overs in

the language are the short words to complete a sentence.

Similarly, if knowledge is gained or the names of things acquired by someone but no action results from

it that would suggest the particular knowledge became useless for that person. Dale Carnegie in his

book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” says “Only Knowledge that is used sticks in your mind”

Conversely, ‘useful knowledge’ can be called as knowledge that can be Applied or put into action. Hence

knowledge that cannot be put into action is simply ‘useless knowledge’. Hence ‘knowledge’ or all ‘names’ 

can be broadly divided into 2 categories

+ Useful knowledge – action oriented

+ Useless knowledge – no action

Carnegie quotes Herbert Spencer in the same book saying, “The great aim of education is not knowledge

but action.”

A dua says, “O Allah! I seek refuge in You from knowledge which is not beneficial” Hence a Muslim

always makes dua for himself and the society that we may acquire and promote beneficial knowledge.

I would classify beneficial knowledge as knowledge which can be

used to uplift the society. Any knowledge which helps better the

society is beneficial knowledge. And any such knowledge that also

passes the test of time and remains useful for 20, 40, 100 or a 1000

years is True knowledge. So beneficial knowledge is knowledge that uplifts the society and can be put

into action. True knowledge stands the test of time.

The knowledge of the Quran is the only such True knowledge that exists on the face of the earth. It was

inspiring and useful then, 1400 years ago and it has not ceased to amaze us despite all our technological advances, now. In this information era we are still accessing its pearls and this will continue till the end

of time.

Why then our schools are void of it? Why is it that our hearts and minds are void of it? Do we feel this

void? Shouldn’t we take concrete steps to fill this void and acquire True Knowledge?

Allah is eternal. So are human beings. We have been created by Allah so we have a beginning but we

have no end. We are eternal beings too. In all our years of development we were raised conditioned by

the society. There are many things that need to be unlearnt in order to relearn the right beneficial

methods of being. Is it not useful and mandatory to acquire Self-Knowledge or True Knowledge about

ourselves that will help uplift us and make us better so that we are able to transform not only our

personal reality but transform our society as well? Learning about ourselves, knowledge of being is the

most pivotal that is required along with the understanding of the Holy Quran to bring about real growth.

“Only Knowledge that is used
sticks in your mind”
~ Dale Carnegie
Book “How to Win Friends and
Influence People”

“The great aim of education is
not knowledge but action”
~ Herbert Spencer