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LETTER: Using education is an opportunity to succeed in every walk of life

'Education teaches individuals how to weigh various sides of an issue through critical thinking and it enhances their own problem-solving and decision-making skills' - reader Riffat Jahan
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BradfordToday received the following letter from Riffat Jahan regarding the importance of education:

Education is said to be the great equalizer, and now more than ever, in every corner of the world, every citizen of this earth should strive for an education that will ensure they not only their success in academics but in every walk of life.

Education is pivotal to the congruity of growth but not limited to the personality of an individual in various aspects including the progress of spiritual, intellectual, and rationality. Education is the path that enhances the connection of body, spirit, intellect and soul hence. Education is critical in raising us beyond our baser instinctual animal-self to a civilized individual with intellect to know the difference between right and wrong.

As such, it is clear that obtaining knowledge and providing equal access to education for all sections of society is of central importance. Albeit, knowledge is not confined to one facet, it explicitly relates to morals, ethics and scruples. Islam has distinguished the ineluctable need of this imperative and disregarded contrivance. Thus, in Islam, education is neither considered a privilege nor a right, instead, it is the “duty” of every Muslim woman and man.

The Prophet of Islam said, “Who goes seeking knowledge, then he is in Allah’s cause until he returns.” — Jami` at-Tirmidhi 2647

Education has many roles to play in our daily living but here are a few that we have all witnessed. Firstly, it endows us with the simple ability to read, write and perform basic math skills also known as basic knowledge to get by. Be it reading the sign on the road, writing a letter or even making your weekly grocery list.

To reiterate the eminence of education, Allah teaches all Muslims a prayer in the Holy Quran, “O my Lord! Increase me in knowledge” (Chapter 20:verse 114), urging all Muslims to think, observe, reflect and to further exercise their capacities.

It empowers us to become a part of a community and equips us with skills to exist within that society as thoughtful citizens, may it be to decide whom to vote for in elections or lend a helping hand within our community.

Education, slowly but surely, nurtures a strong balance by encouraging good self-esteem and rational confidence to apply the learned knowledge in everyday life. Learning how to learn is one of the key elements of education, therefore, it is important for future success that we understand how to find answers to any questions and problems that might arise.

Furthermore, it allows individuals to become more aware and sensitive to their environment, surroundings and influences which consecutively helps engage in problem-solving, exploring various solutions and taking action to further improve. As a result, individuals develop a deeper understanding of issues and have the skills to make informed and responsible decisions.

Indeed, Islam holds education in high esteem as achieving progress in different fields as a religious obligation and a human responsibility. Education teaches individuals how to weigh various sides of an issue through critical thinking, enhancing problem-solving and decision-making skills. Islam does not aspire people to adhere to a specific set of rules instinctively, rather, it encourages individuals to utilize their intellect, conscience and mental capacities to ask questions and contemplate the issues at hand.

Riffat Jahan, Innisfil