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13637: “Seek knowledge even if you have to go as far as China” is a false hadeeth


I study in USA. When I go to my University I cover myself with loose clothes and wear hijab. But, still that University is coeducation. I try to avoid talking to Non Mahram but sometimes I have to talk to them. 
I want to complete my education here and then want to live in some Islamic country. Is it right for me to study in USA? Does this hadith "Even if u have to go to China to earn knowledge, go" applies to woman too?

Published Date: 2001-04-19

Praise be to Allaah.

With regard to girls studying in these mixed societies and in this corrupt environment, please see the answer to Question # 5384. 

With regard to the hadeeth mentioned, “Seek knowledge even if you have to go as far as China, for seeking knowledge is a duty on every Muslim,” Shaykh al-Albaani said in Da’eef al-Jaami’: “(It is) fabricated.” (no. 906). 

The proven hadeeth is that which was narrated by Ibn Maajah from the hadeeth of Anas ibn Maalik, who said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘Seeking knowledge is obligatory upon every Muslim.’” (220. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Sunan Ibn Maajah. What is meant by knowledge here is knowledge of sharee’ah (Islamic knowledge). Al-Thawri said: “It is the knowledge for which no person has any excuse for not knowing.” And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A
Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
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