Concerning the statement “I don’t want to know the khilaaf, I just want to learn”, it has been ascribed to Ali bin Abi Taalib that he once said:
كلمة الحق أريد بها الباطل
“A correct statement used incorrectly.”
I wanted to shed some light on how this statement has been misused and abused. In fact, in certain places it has become a distinctive sign for certain groups. However in reality, if we were to assess why or how this statement is being used in many places, we’ll see that it is actually contradictive since the whole basis of learning one’s religion is to learn right from wrong, light from darkness. As we begin our studies, we learn the khilaaf [i.e. differences] between the people of Tawheed from the people of Shirk, the people of Eeman from the people of Kufr. Moreover, we learn Sunnah from Bid’ah, we learn what Allah loves from what Allah hates. One of the main goals of learning our religion is to distinguish between truth and falsehood, day and night, and uprightness from crookedness. Learning has never been something contrary of knowing the differences. Our scholars have mentioned from learning and seeking knowledge is to know the differences that surround you in your society. Yes a person shouldn’t go beyond what he could bear in understanding differences, but the least of effort should be made in acquiring what is a must to know.
نسأل الله أن يجعلنا من عباده الخلص الذين غرضهم وضوح الحق من الباطل في كل أمورهم
May Allaah make us from amongst His sincere servants who are on search for the truth from falsehood in all of their affairs.
AbdulFattaah Bin Uthman