Beautiful Poem by Ali b. Abi Talib (d. 661) about Knowledge

الناس من جهة التمثال أكفاء *** أبوهم آدم وأمهم حواء

نفس كنفس ، وأرواح مشاكلة *** وأعظم خلقت فيها وأعضاء 

وإنما أمهات الناس أوعيـــــــــة *** مستودعات وللأحساب آباء 

فإن يكن لهم من أصلهم شـرف *** يفاخرون به ؛ فالطين ، والماء 

ما الفضل إلا لأهل العلم إنهـــم *** على الهدى لمن استهدى أدلاء

وقيمة المرء ما قد كان يحسنــه *** والجاهلون لأهل العلم أعداء

ففز بعلم ولا تطلب به بــــــــــدلا *** فالناس موتى ، وأهل العلم أحياء

A (very loose!] translation:

At face value, all people seem to be equal, their father is Adam and their mother is Eve
Each soul resembling the other, with bones and organs in their bodies
They take pride in their lineage, even though they are composed merely of water and earth
True virtue belongs only to the people of knowledge, for they are the ones upon true guidance
They are the guides for people who seek guidance
A person’s worth is only in that in which he excels
Verily the ignorant are the enemies of the people of knowledge
So seek victory in knowledge and do accept any substitute for it
And know that the people are largely dead, and only those with knowledge are truly alive


3 thoughts on “Beautiful Poem by Ali b. Abi Talib (d. 661) about Knowledge

  1. You seem to have missed the translation of one line وانما امهات ….
    Please could you kindly trqnslate that?

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