Verify and Ascertain
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy
Verification is one of the most important affairs, if not the most important. Verifying what is transmitted from others is an important affair, because sometimes the transmitters harbour evil intentions, so they transmit – intentionally and deliberately – that which will tarnish the reputation of the one they transmit from. And sometimes they do not harbour an evil intention, but they understand something in a manner that is opposite to what is intended by it.
Therefore, it is obligatory to verify. So, when the proof [sound source] of the transmission is established, then the one from whom the statement was transmitted is engaged in a discussion [or his statement is examined] before a judgement is passed as to whether it is a mistake or not. That is because it may become clear to you – by way of discussion [or observation] – that the one from whom the statement was transmitted is correct. And if not, then what is known is that if a person were to immediately pass a judgement merely based on what he hears, he will transmit things [i.e. statements, views, opinions etc] from some of the scholars – those considered to be the beacons of [Sharee’ah] knowledge – that which the souls will dislike; but when one verifies, contemplates and establishes contact with this Shaikh, the affair will become clarified [or clear to him]. [Excerpt from Sharh Hilyatil Taalibil Ilm Pages 75-76. By Shaikh Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah). Paraphrased, see Arabic text below]: