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Take the good, leave the bad

Question

Some scholars say ‘Take the good, leave the bad.’

Whats is its’ reference?

I have read Mashayikh advising to avoid reading things from people of batil due to zulumat in their writings/speeches, how does this reconcile with the former mentioned quote/principle?

 

Answer

This statement is actually an understood principle among the Scholars. It is not a Hadith, but actually a logical conclusion.

 

Who does this apply to?

However, it is crucial to understand who this applies to.

There are essentially two groups of people;

  1. Those who have vast amounts of knowledge and understanding.
  2. Those who don’t.

Those who have sound understanding (the first group) will be able to easily sift out ‘the good from the bad’ without being affected by the bad. However, they too read such works with caution, only at times of need.

 

Don’t fall prey to falsehood

An under qualified or ill equipped reader easily falls prey to the bad, since he has no concept of it being wrong.

Therefore the seniors always caution against reading the works of the people of falsehood (ahlul batil), since most of the readers are ill equipped to sift the good from the band in such books. Hence such a reader will be undoubtedly misled.

Furthermore, even if one reads only good in the book of an innovator, one will still subtly be affected by the writers ideology in one way or another.

Imam Muhammad Ibn Sirin (rahimahullah) had given the Ummah a golden piece of advice when he said:

‘Indeed this knowledge is your religion, so check who you take your religion (Din) from.’

(Muqaddimah Sahih Muslim)

In fact Ibn Sirin (rahimahullah) also explained the practice of the Sahabah (radiyallahu’anhum) and Tab’un (rahimahumullah): ‘Initially they would not question the source. When innovations began, they would ask: tell us your source. Thereafter only the narrations from the Ahlus Sunnah would be accepted, and those from the ahlul bid’ah people of innovation (ahlul bid’ah) would be rejected.’

(Muqaddimah Sahih Muslim)

 

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,

 

Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar