In the name of Allah the Most Gracious the Most MercifulDo not put a book on the shelf until you have skimmed through it By Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-’Uthaymeen may Allah have mercy on him
Ibn al-‘Uthaymeen explained this point made by Shaykh Bakr Abu Zayd in his book “Hilyah Taalib al-‘ilm” under the 52nd point entitled “Futher to this”. Shaykh Bakr Abu Zayd said,
“52.Further to this (in regards to dealing with a book):
If you purchase a book do not put it in your library until you have had a browse through it, or read its foreword, its index, and a few extracts from it. If, however, you put it in your library in its category, a long time will pass and your lifetime will pass without looking into it, and this has been experienced. And Allah (alone) is the Giver of prosperity.”
Ibn al-‘Uthaymeen comments:
This is correct and has occurred many times. A person should constantly skim through new books; if the book is big then (he should at least) read the index. And rarely should you find a person coming with a book and put it on the shelf before skimming through it.
That is because if you are in need of reviewing this book (later on), then you already have knowledge of what ruling of an issue this book contains.
And if you haven’t reviewed this book, even once, then you will not know what issue and benefits it contains. Many benefits will pass you by while these benefits are in your book on your shelf.
Translated by: Abu Awzaa’ee AbdusSalaam
الفقير الى الله