Imam Ghazali on the ‘Ulamā’ of the Hereafter, the Teachers of Falsehood and Avoiding Rulers

A masterfully timeless and classic exposition, which holds as true today as when first written …

The Caliphate

In the first section of his Iḥyā’ ‘ulūm al-dīn, entitled Kitāb al-‘ilm (The Book of Knowledge),Imam Ghazali includes a chapter On the Evils of Knowledge and on Determining the Distinguishing Features of the Scholars of the Hereafter [‘Ulamā’ al-Ākhirah] and those of the Teachers of Falsehood [‘Ulamā’ al-Sū’].

The following is excerpted from the English translation by Nabih Amin Faris (Islamic Book Service, New Delhi, 2002). Minor alterations have been made to the translation and words in square brackets have been added:

‘We have already enumerated the excellence of knowledge and of the scholars, while concerning the teachers of falsehood several important strictures have been mentioned. These strictures have shown that the teachers of falsehood are the most severely punished of all men on the Day of Resurrection. It is therefore very important to ascertain what distinguishes the scholars of this world from the scholars…

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