Lidasan: A lesson that I learned in Madrasah


During my grade school years in Cotabato City, I had the privilege of listening to a captivating story narrated by our Ustadz. The story revolves around two individuals: an old and wise man named Ali and a young and curious boy named Hasan. Ali was a highly respected and esteemed elder in the village, renowned for his vast knowledge and insightful wisdom. On the other hand, Hasan was a bright and curious youngster, always eager to explore and learn new things.

The story goes like this.

One day, as they sat in the shade of a large oak tree, Hasan asked Ali about the saying, “Seek knowledge even if you have to go as far as China.” Ali smiled at the boy’s question and began to tell him a story.

“In the time of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him; there was a man who traveled all the way to China in search of knowledge. He studied under scholars and learned valuable

lessons that he brought back to his community. His journey was long and difficult, but the

knowledge he gained was priceless.”

As Ali spoke, Hasan’s eyes widened with wonder and curiosity. He was fascinated by the idea of traveling to faraway places to seek knowledge. Inspired by the story, Hasan approached Ali and asked if he could accompany him on a journey to a distant land to learn new things.

Ali looked at Hasan with a twinkle in his eye and agreed to take the young boy under his wing.

Together, they embarked on a journey that would not only test their physical endurance but also their mental resilience.

They traveled through vast deserts, crossed turbulent rivers, and climbed steep mountains, facing many challenges along the way. Despite the hardships, Hasan remained determined and eager to learn, while Ali shared his wisdom and guided him on the path to knowledge.

Finally, after many months of traveling, they arrived in a bustling city in a distant land. There,

they met scholars and wise men who imparted valuable insights and teachings to Hasan. He

drank in their knowledge like a thirsty soul in the desert, eager to learn all he could.

As they returned to their village, Hasan was a changed boy. He had grown wiser, more patient, and more compassionate towards others. The villagers marveled at the transformation in Hasan and praised Ali for guiding him on the path to knowledge.

From that day on, Hasan became known as a scholar in his own right, sharing the wisdom he had gained from his journey. The saying, “Seek knowledge even if you have to go as far as China,” became a guiding principle for Hasan and all those in the village who sought to grow and learn.

After listening to the story, I asked myself, why did the Prophet advise Muslims to “seek

knowledge even if you have to go as far as China”?


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