Author: Ahmad Fareed
Translator: Isma'eel Alarcon
Note: Abridged version of the original
1. The student of knowledge must first know that Allaah has made it obligatory for him to worship Him, and worship cannot be attained except through knowledge. And he must know that it is not befitting for a Muslim to remain in ignorance.
2. He must avoid all affairs that cause him to draw his attention away from the objective (of knowledge), except for those things which he must involve himself with for needs sake.
3. He must also begin by cleansing his soul from reprehensible manners and reprehensible characteristics.
4. He must not feel proud or arrogant about the knowledge he acquires. Rather, he must display humility in front of his teacher and grant him full control to direct and supervise him in all matters.
5. Similarly, he must carefully select the person he is going to acquire knowledge from. He should not take knowledge, except from one whose qualifications are legitimately established, whose good religious qualities are evident, whose reputation is reliable and whose respectability is well known. Muhammad Ibn Sireen, Maalik Ibn Anas and many more of the Salaf have said:
"Indeed, this knowledge is the Religion! So look carefully towards whom you take your Religion from."
6. He must look towards his teacher with an eye of respect and reverence, for indeed this is the best way of deriving benefit from him. When some of our Salaf would go to study with their teacher, they would give something away in charity and say:
"O Allaah, conceal my teacher's defects from me and do not cause the blessing of his knowledge to be taken away from me."
7. He must be polite with his teacher's companions and those that attend his learning circle, for indeed, in doing that, he will be behaving well with the teacher and preserving the well being of the gathering.
8. He must safeguard and preserve his studies by being diligent and persisting in it during all times in which he has the ability to do so. He should not satisfy himself with a little when he has the ability to attain more. He should not over burden himself with things that he cannot handle, for fear that it will cause him to grow tired and postpone what he desires to attain (of knowledge).