Question 96: Why Is There Still Ignorance Despite So Many Efforts For Popularizing Knowledge?
Question: Though the Holy Prophet (S) has invited people towards knowledge and wisdom and encouraged them to fight against ignorance and obtain knowledge, in spite of these we find that today the majority of the people are ignorant?
Answer: Till the time the Muslims had not become aloof from Islamic teachings knowledge and science were progressing among them very fast. Our assertion is proved by the presence of great Islamic universities and libraries that are mentioned in history.
At the time when paper was not manufactured so widely and there were no printing presses, there were four hundred thousand books in the library of Muragha and four million books in the library of Baitul Hikmah of Baghdad.
In the same way the libraries of other countries were also overflowing with books. Till the time the Muslims were subjugated by dictators and western powers, there were a large number of intellectuals and educated people among them. For example, before France occupied Algeria, the majority of the people there were literate. However, after French occupation the government went into foreign hands, the situation changed.
In the near past when some leaders of Islamic countries began to fight among themselves and outsiders also fanned the flames of hypocrisy, the Muslims started experiencing a period of ignorance and decline. Their culture stopped developing and progressing and a majority of the Muslims remained illiterate. A great part of who were also unable to read and write.
We hope that Muslims would once again derive the benefits of Islamic principles and resume their intellectual mission as nowadays we can see the signs of revival among them.