True scholars and sheikhs are not those calling themselves scholars and sheikhs, assigning themselves grand titles. When you encounter the true scholar or sheikh — man or woman — you will know it. By their fruit you shall know them.

Those bickering men on YouTube and social media, belittling one another: they are not your guides. The true scholar and sheikh is not found manicuring vast followings, preaching how great they are. The true scholar or sheikh teaches that only God is truly great, and that they are but dust.

The true scholar and sheikh is humble, walking lightly on the earth, who responds to the ignorant with these words: “Peace!”

The true scholar and sheikh may seem a little and insignificant man or woman to many. They may mend their own clothes. They may polish the shoes of others. They may carve wooden spoons. They may live in a tiny basement flat, or an end of terrace house. They may work in a factory, or as a doctor, in academia or tech support.

When you meet the man or woman who sees themselves as dust, as a grain of sand, as a gnat, or a molecule or electron or quark: then you will find those who are special, who truly understood the message of their Lord.

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