Invoking Allah for Benefit and Increase in Knowledge- 15th November 2015
The Prophet (Salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) used to invoke Allah saying:
“Oh Allah, benefit me with what You have taught me and teach me what benefits me, and increase me in knowledge.” (At-Tirmidhi, Authenticated by Albaani)
It is Allah who teaches us everything we learn. In this du’aa, we ask Allah to benefit us by this knowledge (i.e. To make us act upon it), then to teach us what benefits us (i.e. To teach us knowledge that corrects us religiously, reforms our heart, affairs, etc.)
According to scholars; whoever acts upon the knowledge he learns, Allah will grant him that knowledge which he doesn’t know.
It is important for the person who has tasted the flavour and delight of knowledge to ask Allah to increase him in it. This is the attitude of the person who is truthful when seeking knowledge. He isn’t satisfied with what he knows, he always yearns for more knowledge.
This, however, is restricted to religious knowledge.
Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said, “Allah didn’t command the Prophet (Salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to ask Allah to increase him in anything except knowledge.”
With regards to the worldly pleasure, it’s not recommended to ask Allah to increase you in it. You should instead thank Allah for it, ask Him to bless you in it, and preserve it.
If Allah opened for you the gate of understanding a verse, a Hadith, a name of Allah, or you learn anything new in the religion, then invoke Allah with this supplication.
In another narration in An-Nasaa’i, the same wording of the du’aa is mentioned with an addition:
وارزقني علما تنفعني به “And grant me knowledge which will benefit me.”
This shows us that knowledge is a provision. Allah provides for everyone generally, the Muslims and non-Muslims. But there are special provisions of Allah, like knowledge, Eeman, understanding of the Qur’an, which He doesn’t bestow on everyone.
You are asking Allah for knowledge which He will make you benefit from. Included in this is asking Allah to make the means of acquiring knowledge and acting upon it easy for you.
Since knowledge is a provision, it means that sometimes the gate could be closed on you, and acquiring it could be made difficult. There is a wisdom behind it. Allah may be testing you. Whether you will have good or bad thoughts about Allah? Will you beg Allah to make it easy for you or will you give up and say, ‘Allah doesn’t want me to learn, so I won’t study anymore?’
Just as money and other forms of provision may be prevented from us by Allah to test us, so will knowledge. You have to think good about Allah.
Whoever asks Allah to increase him in knowledge should take the means of acquiring knowledge. It is foolish to ask Allah to increase you in knowledge, and then remain at home and do absolutely nothing.