بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
Q: We want an adequate and decisive answer from you with regards to the 2nd generation Islamic specialist Muhammad ibn Seereen’s statement, “Indeed this knowledge is religion, so look carefully at those from which you take your religion.” Also do we seek knowledge from proficient students of knowledge in creed and methodology, whilst knowing that they (only) speak in accordance with the understanding of the salaf?
Sheikh Ubayd: Muhammad ibn Seereen was among those who were educated by the companions of Allah’s Messenger -sallahu alayhi wa sallam. He learned religion, Quran, Sunnah, and the sound exemplary path of inviting to Allah from them. So if he made such a statement or similar to it, he said it based on awareness, comprehension, understanding, and experience. Conveyed from him are two matters.
The first; warning against the people of desire.
The second; advice to the (Islamic) nation, and calling them to stick to the people of knowledge, those whose firmness in knowledge, correctness of creed, and soundness of methodology are attested i.e., whoever virtue, and good education and nurturing have been exhibited.
Along with that you are aware that what he intended was knowledge i.e., Islamic legislative knowledge, as it is comprehension of Allah’s religion in which the book and sunnah came with. The pious predecessors traversed upon this. Thus their way of life was to physically enact the text i.e., the text of the book and sunnah. So knowledge it is obligatory that it not be taken except from he who is credible in creed and methodology, and the people of desires are not resorted towards. Knowledge is not taken from them except out of necessity. For example, if the people of a region are in need of a teacher of Arabic grammar, and there is no one among Ahlis Sunnah, there is no one except an innovator, in this case they learn from him along with caution from his schemes while teaching.
Translated by Najeeb Al Anjelesi
Source: مجموعة الرسائل الجابرية في مسائل علمية وفق الكتاب و السنة النبوية م#2