Sincerity in Seeking Knowledge
Indeed, Shaykhul Hadeeth (rahmatullahi 'alayh) was blessed through the barakah of his father's prayers. This is surely what is meant by true love; a love that is always linked with Allah (subhaanahu wata'aalaa). The extract below demonstrates this love, and shows just how immersed Maulana Zakariyya (rahmatuallahi 'alayh) was in the world of Hadeeth...
On the 7th Muharram 1332 Hijri after Zuhr salah I started Mishkat Shareef . My father who used to lead salah, led Zuhr salah on that day . After Zuhr he performed ghusl and proceeded to the room upstairs which today is the guest-room . At that time it was the Farsi-khana and other than during madrassa times it was our resting place . There, facing the door leading to the masjid, on the spot where the Farsi teachers sit and where their mats are spread, he spread a musalla and performed two raka'ahs nafal salah. Then turning towards me, he made me recite 'Bismillah" and read the Khutba of Mishkat. Then turning to the Qiblah he made duaa for about fifteen to twenty minutes. I am not aware of what things he prayed for. I know that I only had one prayer in my heart :"The study of hadeeth for me had stated quite late. Ya Allah keep this Knowledge with me till my death." Alhamdu lillah in spite of my weakness and iniquity Allah has accepted this duaa of mine. So that from 1332 Hijri onwards until 1390 Hijri no time passed when I was not busy with some aspect or other of hadeeth studies.
This is so, although at the time I was wondering how this will be attained because , even if I should become a teacher, ten or twelve years will pass by before I will be allowed to teach hadeeth. At that time Maulana Abdul Lateef, who had been appointed as lecturer in 1323 Hijri, had up to then not yet reached the stage of teaching Mishkat.
But of course Allah is the Causer of Causes and when He desires anything, He Himself creates the Cause . In 1332 Hijri I read Mishkat and in 1333 Hijri and 1334 I read Daura, which will be detailed later.
From 1335 Hijri Bazal Majhood was begun , which lasted till 1345 Hijri. Then started the work on Owjaz which was finished in 1375 Hijri and together with it various other works connected with hadeeth, which through Allah's Grace still remains with me.
In 1341 Hijri my period of teaching hadeeth started which lasted till 1388 Hijri, after which through bladder problems (Nuzool Ab) this blessed programme of teaching was terminated. Praise be to Allah that even today in 1390 Hijri I am still involved with writings on hadeeth. We shall continue whether my evil deeds will allow it or not.