Education is very important for us. The purpose of education is not just to learn how to make a living but also how to live a good life. It is well said that:
“Without education, man is as though in a closed room and with education he finds himself in a room with all its windows open towards outside world.”
This is why Islam attaches such great importance to knowledge and education. When the Quran began to be revealed, the first word of its first verse was ‘Iqra’ that is, read. Allah says:
“Read in the name of your Lord who created -Created man from a clinging substance. Read, and your Lord is the most Generous -Who taught by the pen -Taught man that which he knew not.” [Al-Quran 96:1-5]
Allah’ Messenger (S.A.W) was taught the following supplication in the Quran:
“And say, “My Lord, increase me in knowledge.”” [Al-Quran 20:114]
Islam calls us to seek knowledge. The Messenger made seeking knowledge an obligation upon every Muslim.
He (SAW), said,
“Whoever goes out seeking knowledge, then he is in Allah’s cause until he returns.” [Jami` at-Tirmidhi]
“It is obligatory for every Muslim to acquire knowledge. Allah likes those who seek knowledge”. [Usulul Kafi]
At the battle of Badr, in which our beloved Holy Prophet (SAW) gained victory over his foes, seventy people of the enemy ranks were taken to prison. Some of these prisoners were literate people. In order to benefit from their education the Prophet declared that if one prisoner teaches ten Muslim children how to read and write, this will serve as his ransom and he will be set free. This was the first school in the history of Islam established by the Prophet himself with all its teachers being non-Muslims. The Sunnah of the Prophet shows that education is to be received whatever the risk involved.