Clarifying Important Matters through Justification
some matters are difficult to understand or confusing to students, sometimes they cannot understand the reasons for it. at this point, the teacher needs to clarify to the student the difficult points by using justification or explanation. justification means to cite the reasons for a certain matter or ruling. it unfolds obscurities and confusion and this is why it gives relief and a sense of understanding. the difficult ruling that you know the reason for, can be absorbed and accepted more than the ruling that you are not aware of its reasons. this can be clarified in the following hadiths (prophetic sayings):
1- narrated abu huraira that the prophet (peace be upon him) said "if a house fly falls in the drink of anyone of you, he should dip it (in the drink), for one of its wings has a disease and the other has the cure for the disease." (sahih al-bukhari, volume 4, book 54, number 537) the prophet mentioned in the hadith the wisdom behind dipping the fly in the drink or vessel, he (pbuh) explained that one of its wings has the disease and the other has the cure. if the hadith did not mention the reason or explanation, it would have been a puzzle to listeners, but thankfully the prophet (peace be upon him) explained the reason for dipping the fly.
2- thabit ibn al-dahhaak (ra)1 said: “at the time of the messenger of allah (peace be upon him), a man vowed to sacrifice some camels in bawanah. he came to the messenger of allah (pbuh) and said, ‘i have vowed to sacrifice some camels in bawanah.’ the prophet muhammad (pbuh) said, ‘were there any idols there that were worshipped during the jahiliyah2?’ he said, ‘no.’ the prophet (pbuh) said ‘did they hold any of their holidays there?’ he said, ‘no.’ the messenger of allah (pbuh) said: ‘then fulfill your vow, for there is no fulfillment of any vow which involves disobeying allah (swt)3, or with regard to something that the son of adam does not own.’”· this clearly shows the prohibition of conducting ceremonies or islamic gatherings in areas where the disbelievers have used and were known by them to be used for worship and holidays. [narrated by abu dawoud in al-aymaan wal-nudhoor]
in the hadith, the man asked the prophet muhammad (peace be upon him) about his vow to sacrifice some camels in a place called bawanah. when the man mentioned this certain place, the prophet (pbuh) wondered about the reason for this place in particular. he asked the man whether it had any idols that polytheists used to worship in such place or whether any jahiliyah holidays were witnessed in this land. when both questions were answered with denial, it became evident to the prophet (peace be upon him) that there is no reason for the man not to fulfill his vow, as long as it conforms to the islamic belief. the prophet muhammad (pbuh) permitted the man to fulfill his vow then he explained it saying ‘no fulfillment of any vow which involves disobeying allah ’. this means that if a vow involved disobeying allah or doing something atheistic that polytheists used to do in jahiliyah times. dear brothers and sisters, you can see how the explanation of the prophet (pbuh) came after he asked the man the two above mentioned questions. if he (pbuh) did not explain the reasons why he asked the questions, any person might have asked about the wisdom behind the prophet’s questions concerning the place. so, the prophet’s explanation at the end clarified the reasons for questions about this place.
1) justification and explanation clarify any difficulties or obscurities facing students.
2) justification and explanation reassures and gives relief as it approximates the meaning to the mind and unfolds any mysteries. it puts the mind at ease. so, explanation help ascertain information in the minds of students.
(1) ra: radya allah anhu/anha [may allah be pleased with him/her]
(2) jahiliyah: in islam, the period preceding the revelation of the qur’an to the prophet muhammad (peace be upon him).
(3) swt = suhanahu wa ta'ala [glorified and exalted be he]