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Importance of Wisdom or hikmah in Islam

By Maulana Farooq Khan

Wisdom has a special place in Islam. It comes immediately after the human personality. Qur’an says:

“He granted wisdom whom He pleaseth; and he to whom wisdom is granted receives indeed a benefit overflowing”. (2-269)

At another place Qur’an mentions
“We bestowed wisdom on Luqman: show thy gratitude to Allah”. (31-12)

After studying Qur’an, one can easily infer that the development and progress of human personality is not feasible without wisdom. Every personality that lacks wisdom will be incomplete. Regarding the development and improvement of the human personality, Qur’an says it is the responsibility of a Prophet to embellish the personalities of his followers.

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To this end, he teaches them Qur’an and educates them in the way of God and His shariah, educates them with wisdom and through the combination of all of the above develops their personalities. The completion of personality is the basic tenet of religion and the great asset of human life.

If wisdom has been given fundamental importance in Qur’an and if it is among the basic Islamic terms, it is of paramount importance for us to know about it. We should strive to realize as to what is it and how important a place it has in our lives. Besides, we should also have complete realization of its manifestations. Wisdom is basically a great gift of Allah.

Therefore the freshness it brings, is not found anywhere else. The basic outcome of wisdom is that it contains beauty. This beauty is a bliss, above doubts and beyond distrust and disbelief. It is devoid of weakness. We can compare it with a lamp that lights up a home and doesn’t allow the darkness to descend even for a moment. Wisdom is something that directly descends into heart and awakens a dormant soul. The best aspect of wisdom is the fact that it instantly transforms a pauper into the wealthiest person. Without it, a wealthy man is nothing more than a pauper.

Wisdom is something revealed. It reveals truth without premonition and effort. It is the reason that it is called God-gifted. Nevertheless, in order to receive this gift of wisdom, you need to follow a pious lifestyle and follow the revealed religion. Another basic foundation to get wisdom is refraining from useless talks and unwanted acts. Abu Hurairah, a Companion narrates the Prophet (PBUH) as saying, “When you see a person of few words who also wants to avoid the world, try to seek his company as his heart is gifted with wisdom”. (Behaqi)

While wisdom is called a revealed knowledge, its manifestation in a person’s life is through three ways:

1-Divine Guidance
When the wisdom is manifested through heart, it is called inner stimulation, Divine Guidance, thankfulness and insight. Qur’an in Surah Luqman, calls thankfulness a form of wisdom.

2-Judiciousness and sagacity
When the wisdom is manifested through judiciousness and sagacity, it is called astuteness, intelligence and acumen. A person who talks insane and has no depth of knowledge, he has nothing to do with wisdom.

3-Morality
When the manifestation of wisdom is through the practical life of a man, this wisdom is called character, temperament and good disposition. It shows as to how deeply the wisdom is ingrained in human life. A person who is gifted with wisdom and the one who is devoid of it cannot be compared.

Their lives are totally different. A man who has been gifted with wisdom will have a stable character. He is a dependable friend, a trustworthy person on whom you can blindly trust. He is a person who realizes the beauty of life and makes every effort that whatever good, whatever beautiful is present in life is not lost.

In the above lines, we have mentioned about the people who are gifted with wisdom. It is gifted to those people whose hearts are clear as mirror. This is the mirror on which the Truth shares His reflection. The people who are knee-deep in greed, ravenousness, pride, rage and whose all efforts are centered towards earning money through all means, legal and illegal, they will remain devoid of the wealth of wisdom. They don’t give an opportunity to Allah to talk to them through mystic ways and guide them through subtle signs.

 

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