Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW

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Bibliographic Information
Journal Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies
Title Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW
Author(s) Ahmed, Manzoor, Zafar Khan
Volume 5
Issue 1
Year 2018
Pages 01-09
Full Text Crystal Clear mimetype pdf.png
Keywords knowledge, Wisdom, Teaching of Quran, Hadith
Chicago 16th Ahmed, Manzoor, Zafar Khan. "Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW." Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies 5, no. 1 (2018).
APA 6th Ahmed, M., Khan, Z. (2018). Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW. Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies, 5(1).
MHRA Ahmed, Manzoor, Zafar Khan. 2018. 'Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW', Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies, 5.
MLA Ahmed, Manzoor, Zafar Khan. "Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW." Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies 5.1 (2018). Print.
Harvard AHMED, M., KHAN, Z. 2018. Efforts in Connection With Education in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad SAW. Bannu University Research Journal in Islamic Studies, 5.


The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was the most effective orator of all the times. He knew how to address the hearts, and thus he became the beloved one of the hearts. He first made himself loved, and then sought the ways to educate people. He used a style in his speeches that affected people and made them think, so he achieved permanent behavior change in people by means of the best educational methods. It is fact that in the present times those nations who give priorities to knowledge are ruling over the world in one way or the other way i. e militarily or economically. A very important questions strikes the minds that what is the importance of Duniavi(world) knowledge in Islam. Objectives of this study were to investigate the importance of duniavi(world) knowledge in the light of Quran and hadith and provide a guide line to our young generation for getting knowledge. There are many hadiths that encourage education and criticizes ignorance. Being a member of the Muslim nation it is our responsibility to train and guide our young generation for better future.


Allah (سبحانہُ تعالیٰ)said: “like (a favor which you have already received) in that we have sent among you a Messenger of your own, rehearsing to you our verses, and purifying you, and instructing you in Scripture and Wisdom, and in new knowledge”[1]. Prophet’s status as an educator is described in some verses of the holy Quran as:

Hazrat Abraham said “O Our lord! Rise up in their midst a messenger from among them who shall recite unto them your revelations and shall instruct them in the scripture and in the Hikmah (wisdom) and shall make them grow in purity”[2]. Our prophet ﷺ explained his duty as “Allah sent me as an educator”[3]. In the above quoted verse, Allah has mentioned the objectives of the mission of the prophet Muhammad ﷺ. One of the objectives was to teach the Book, the Wisdom and unknown things. Thus he was sent among men as a Teacher as well.

These verses and others are examples of the prophet’s role in implementing the dictates in the holy Qur’an, both upon himself and his companions, in order to purify their morals, habits, and lives.

Allah سبحانہُ تعالیٰ said: “It is he who has sent among the unlettered a Messenger from themselves reciting to them his verses and purifying them and teaching them the Book and wisdom although they were before in clear error”[4]. Allah sent Prophet Muhammadﷺ to do four things:

  1. Recite the verses of the Qur’an
  2. Teach the Qur’an
  3. Teach the Wisdom
  4. Purify his followers

The Prophet (PBUH) nurtured his companions and taught them in such a way that the whole of Arabia drastically changed in a period of 23 years.

Purpose of Islamic Education

There are three terms which are used for education in Islamic perspective that is ta'līm, Tarbiyah and Ta'dīb. In Arabic language Ta'līm means to be aware, to know, to perceive and to learn which shows that knowledge is imparted through teaching, whereas Tarbiyah is to grow, to increase and to rear that is the spiritual and ethical upbringing according to the will of Allah. Ta'dīb refers to well-manners, to be cultured emphasizing on development of social behavior[5]. Education in Islam covers all the aspects including physical, intellectual, moral, spiritual as well as social dimensions of the human personality. Knowledge should be imparted in order to actualize and perfect all the dimensions of human being. Acquiring intellectual and spiritual knowledge is not an end but a mean to stimulus leading to faith and right action and for this purpose the highest and most useful model of perfection is our prophet Hazrat Muhammad (ﷺ).

Reading and Writing in the Era of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

Muslims believe that the words of the Quran are the literal words of God, and preserving them was always of paramount concern. From the earliest days of Islam, the prophet’s companions began to write down the words of the Quran. They were written on back, bone, animal skins, and even stones. There is no doubt that writing has spread in the era of the prophet and its spread was on a large scale than it was in the Jaahiliyyah(dark age). The Holy Quran urged on learning as the Holy Prophet Muhammad ﷺalso urged on it. The nature of Prophet Hood required a lot of writers for learners and readers. So revelation, matter of state, correspondence, covenants and charters also required writers. Number of writers increased after Islam to fill the needs of the new state. There were round about forty writers of Holy prophet ﷺ whom were responsible to write the revelation including Abu Bakr رضی اللہ عنہ, Uthmanرضی اللہ عنہ, Ali رضی اللہ عنہ, Mua’wiyahرضی اللہ عنہ, Aban bin Saeedرضی اللہ عنہ, Khalid bin Walidرضی اللہ عنہ, Abi ibn ka’bرضی اللہ عنہ, Zayd ibn Thabit ibn Qaysرضی اللہ عنہ. They wrote the Qura’n on whatthey possess like Alas palm of trees, the patches, pieces of mantle and the bones of the shoulders and rids[6].

During the period of Makkah our prophetﷺ encouraged Sahabhaرضی اللہ (Companions) عنہto duplicate and distribute the verses that were revealed on him. Dar al Arqam was used as an education center in the early period of Islam. Muslims learned the Quran and principles of Islam there and practiced what they have learned. Some writers wrote alms and charity matter, some wrote al-madainat and other transactions and some were writing letters in different languages.

After hijrah first of all a mosque was setup called Masjid-e-Nabvi, which served as both a place of worship as well as education center. Adjacent to Masjid-e-Nabvi a place called “suffah” where companions as well as the people far away stayed there and remained busy in reading and writing. Our prophet ﷺalso taught there. The sphere of the educational services of our holy prophetﷺwere not limited only to a specific community or religion in spite of very limited resources. After the establishment of Suffah many other educational spots were opened those ensured educational services to the people of their respective communities[7].Hazrat obadah bin al-Sa’amitرضی اللہ عنہ said that prophet ﷺ appointed him to train the residential of Suffah in writing and learning Quran[8].Despite the political and combat engagements holy prophet ﷺ focused on education to eradicate the illiteracy form the society of Madina and Saeed bin al-Aa’sرضی اللہ عنہ were deputed as teacher for reading and writing skills as he was a good calligrapher[9].

When Islamic state established after migration number of writers increased as there were nine mosques along with the mosque of Holy prophet ﷺ in the city of Madina and these are centers of attention of the Muslims in which they learn the Holy Quran, the teachings of Islam, reading and writing. Muslim who knew reading and writing contributed to teach their brothers. And from these early Muslim ibn al Rabee Saad Kharji رضی اللہ عنہand Bashir bin Saad bin Tha’labahرضی اللہ عنہ and Aban bin Saeed bin al Aasرضی اللہ عنہand others. Omar رضی اللہ عنہwas one among the few people in Makah who knew Reading and writing before Islam. Usmanرضی اللہ عنہ was one of the few persons of Mecca who knew reading and writing.

Acquiring Knowledge through Non-Muslims

How great important is attached to learning in Islam can be understood from an event in the life of the Prophetﷺ. At The battle of Badr in which the Prophet gained victory over his opponents, seventy people of the enemy rank were taken prisoner. It was decided that he who teaches ten Muslim how to read and write, this will serve as his ransom and he will be set free[10].

This was the first school in the history of Islam established by the prophet ﷺhimself with all its teachers being non – Muslim. Furthermore, they will again create problems for Islam and Muslims. This sunnah of the prophetﷺ shows that education is to be received whatever the risk involved.

Learning other Languages

There were some people among the Companions who speak Persian, Greek, Coptic, Abyssinian, Hebrew and Syria. Once the prophet ﷺ asked Zayd bin Thabit, said, I do not know, the prophet ﷺsaid, learn it. There upon, Zayd learned Hebrew and Syrian[11].

Importance of Research

On the one hand Islam places great emphasis to education and on the other; all those factors which are necessary to make progress in learning have been provided by Allah. One of these special factors is the freedom of research. One example of it is that in Makkah (the birthplace of the prophet) dates were not grow. Afterworld the Prophet ﷺmigrated to Madinah the city of dates. One day the prophet ﷺsaw that some people were atop the date trees busy in doing something. On being asked what they were engaged in, they replied that they were pollinating. The prophet ﷺsuggested them not to do so the following year date yield was considerably very low. The Prophetﷺ enquired them of the reason. They told him that the date crop depended on pollination since he suggested them to do otherwise, they had refrained from that, The Prophet ﷺthen told them to go on doing as they used to, and that you know the world matters better than me[12].

Teacher Training by Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

Prophet Muhammad ﷺimmediately set about teaching his people the principles of Islam soon after receiving Divine Revelation in Makah. He disciple them and taught them to invite people to Allah’s message in good manner and with Wisdom. Muhammad ﷺencouraged his followers to attend learning classes, and he sent teachers of Quran to the outlying tribes and far away cities. Teachers of Islam were trained by the prophetﷺ himself through the Quran which revolutionized their live. Above all, he trained them and taught them to invite people. To Allah’s message in a good manner and with wisdom. The First Muslim teacher began to teach new Muslim how to read and recite the verses of the Qur’an it is recorded that time and most of the teaching took place orally. As their demand grew Muslims teachers began to teach in different localities and tribes in and around Makah.

Ma’sab bin Umair(RA)

Holy prophet Muhammadﷺsent Ma’sab bin Umair(RA) to Medina on the demand of Ous and Kazraj to teach the new Muslims the fundamentals of Islam. Ma’sabeb (RA)went to Medina to represent Prophet Muhammadﷺ with a smiling face, kindness, fine oratory skills and exemplary morals. He extrudes the house of Assad bin Zurara (RA) in to a Quran school. He explained Islam to the people of Medina gently, smiling all the while. He was their imam when they prayed and he was their arbitrator when they found themselves in dispute. He led people in the first ever Friday prayer in the house of Sa’d binul A’asas(RA) imam with the permission of the Prophetﷺ. And as results, the houses of Medina started to be illuminated, one by one. He was the head of the seventy people who came to the second pledge of allegiance at Aqaba: They were honored with the precious words of the Prophetﷺ: Your blood is my bloom; your forgiveness is my forgiveness. I am one of you and you are one with me. Ansar prepared Medina for the arrival of her beloved master[13].

A’yesha Siddiqa’ (RA)

Hazrat A’yesha (رضی اللہ عنہا) one of Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) wives, not only narrated so many of his Sayings, and taught so many Muslim many laws about Islam during the life of Prophet ﷺand after his death. Hazrat A’yesha (رضی اللہ عنہا) lived long after the death of prophet ﷺ and provided great guidance to the Muslim community, even to the renowned Shaba and the Khulfah e Rashideen (four Caliphs). Her student Urwah ibn Zubair (رضی اللہ عنہ) said ‘’ I did not see a great scholar than Hazrat A’yesha (رضی اللہ عنہا) in the learning of Quran, obligatory duties, lawful and unlawful manners, poetry, literature, Arab history and genealogy’’[14]. Her recognition in many fields of learning’s was praised highly by many others. Ibe Abi bi Malik said we should not be surprised by her authority in the matter of poetry since she was the daughter of Abu baker who was a very eloquent and a great literary figure. These includes Amr ibn al-as, Abu Musa al-Ashari and Abdullah ibne Zubair great jurist and scholars of hadith like Abu Hurayrah, Abdullah Ibn Abbas(RA), Abdullah ibn Umar and great scholars among the Tabi’ĕn like Saad ibn Musa’yab and Alqamah ibn Qays[15].

Her reputation as a scholar reached many wherein people come from different places to ask about hadith of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. She was among the great hafiz of hadiths and narrated 2210 hadith in all. No other Sahabi (companion) narrate so many hadith expect Abdullah ibn Umar (رضی اللہ عنہ).

The great Sahaba (companions) of prophet ﷺ usually referred to Aisha (رضی اللہ عنہا) whenever they had any difficulty in understanding any juristic problems. Knowledge gained from Aisha (رضی اللہ عنہا) was so authentic that the famous jurist of Madina Urwah Ibne Zubair and the famous Muhaddith, Qasim ibn Muhammad always gave juristic opinions on the authorities of the narration of Aisha (رضی اللہ عنہا).

Ma’az bi Jabl (RA)

He was a handsome and imposing character with black eyes and curly hair and immediately impressed whomever he met. Ma’az bin Jabalرضی اللہ عنہ distinguished for the sharpness of his intelligence among young men of his own age. When he Nobel Prophet Muhammad ﷺ reached Madinah Ma’zz bin Jabl (رضی اللہ عنہ) stayed in his company as much as possible. He studied the Quran and the laws of Islam until he became one of the best versed of all the companions in the religion of Islam. Whenever Muaz went, people would refer to him for legal judgments on matters over which they differed.

Sometime after the prophet had returned to Madinah, messenger of the kings of Yemen came to him announcing that they and the people of Yemen had becomes Muslim. They requested that some teachers should be sent with them to teach Islam to the people. For this task Prophet commissioned a Group Du’at (missionaries) and made Ma’az bin Jabl their Amir. He put them the following question to Ma’az:

According to what will you judge?

According to the book of Allah. Replied Ma’az

And if you find nothing there in?

According to Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ of Allah

And if you find nothing there in?

Then I will exert myself (exercise ijtihad) to from own judgment. The prophetﷺ was pleased with this reply and said: Praise is to Allah who has guided the messenger of the Prophet to that whish pleases the Prophet.

The Prophet ﷺ personally farewell to this mission of guidance and light and walked for some distance alongside Ma’az as he rode out of the city.


In conclusion, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) had all the love and attention for education and the means of spreading it to every person of the Muslim society. As a result of great educational efforts of Hazrat Muhammad ﷺ such a community that lived in customs and traditions of ignorance has changed into a respectable community. It was because of his constant struggle for education.


  1. Al Quran, Ãl- Imran: 164
  2. Al Quran, Al-Baqarah:129
  3. Ibn Hanbal, III, 328; Ibn Majah, I, 17
  4. Al Quran, Al Jumma’h:2
  6. Uloomul Quran Mufti Taqi usmani, Page 179, Maktba Dara ululoom Karachi.
  7. Ubaid urRehman, Zafar Hussain, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and social welfare activities: A research based study, Tahdhīb al Afkār Prophet Muhammad and……July-December, 2014.
  8. Sunan Abu Dau’d, Abu Dau’dSijstani,vol 3, page 37, Islamic Academy, Lahore, 1983.NizamulHokumat al Nabaviyah, Katani, vol 1, Page 48.
  9. Istiaab ibn abdul bur, P 393.
  10. Muhammad bin Saad, Translated by Allama Abdullah Al Hamadi, Tabaqat ibn s’ad, Vol 1. Chapter AkhbarunNabi, Page 260, Nafees Academy, Lahore.
  11. Mehmood Ahmed Gahzanfer, Hazrat Zahid bin Sabit, Page 28, Issue Aug-Sep (2010),Mahanama al Siraj, JamiaSirajulullom al salfia, JhandaNajarKapalVastu Nepal.
  12. Imam Ahmed bin Humbal, Musnid Ahmed bin Hambal, Translated by Moulana Muhammad Zafar Iqbal, MaktabaRehmania Urdu Bazar Lahore, Vol 4, Page 401.
  13. Muhammad bin Saad, Translated by Allama Abdullah Al Hamadi, Tabaqat ibn saad, Vol 1. Page 229, Nafees Academy, Lahore.
  14. TazkiratulHuffaz, abu Abdullah Shamsuddin Al Zahbi, Vol 1, page 28.
  15. Fathul Bari, Ibn Hajr al Askalni, vol 7, page 82.