To me personally he is a scholar when it comes to Islamic history, and biography of the companions. I know many scholars who've been stuck to give me an answer when I've quizzed them about certain aspects of Islamic history.[/quote] Da'iees/Ulema have different areas of expertise, some strong in some parts and some weak in others. Being stuck to give you an answer means nothing, in fact in Hayatus Sahaba it is mentioned that Sahaba رضي الله عنه rejoiced when they had the chance to say 'I dont know', and I'm referring to Abdullah bin Umar رضي الله عنه here whom a lot of Maliki fiqh comes from. It's just that all have different areas of expertise that's all.
This criteria you must study with a certified and reputable scholar that's graduated from a recognised Darul Madrasah is nothing than a piece of paper. It's like a programmer who can self-learn, and then he'll simply go to an overseas University just to get a pretty certificate documenting he has the skills to code, and that's because big IT corporations will only accept before they even consider recruiting someone. Such yielding fanatacism
My brother the criteria is that you have a sanad/isnad (chain of narration) which can be traced all the way back to Rasoolalah
this sanad will verify your deeni education and later your taqwa will verify your calibre as an alim. If it wasn't for this beautiful isnad system it makes me shudder to think what would have become of this beautiful deen. So to make claims such as it's only a piece of paper and means nothing is absurd brother. Why do we reject Zakir Naik in his fiqh ? Simply because he is not authorised to be giving out rulings in fiqh, his expertise is comparative religion and that's what he should stick to.
[quote]There many people out there I've personally come across who've self-studied for years, and know more than recent graduates in certain areas. I've no issue approaching them for opinions as I would ask a graduate