Shaykh 'Abdur-Rahman ibn Nasir ibn 'Abdullah as-Sa'di was born on the 12th of Muharram 1307H in the town of 'Unayzah in the province of Qassim, in the Najd area of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He lost both his parents when he was a child. His mother died when he was four years old, and his father when he was seven years old.
He started his studies by memorizing the Qur'an, which he finished around the age of twelve. He then engaged himself in seeking different branches of knowledge from the scholars of his city, and those who came to it as visitors. He was very diligent and hardworking in seeking knowledge, and by the age of twenty-three he was already teaching at the same time as he was studying.
Among his famous teachers were:
- Shaykh Ibrahim ibn Hamad ibn Jasir;
- Shaykh Muhammad ibn 'Abdul-Karim ash-Shibl;
- Shaykh Muhammad al-Amin ash-Shinqiti, the famous scholar of tafsir; and
- Shaykh Salih ibn 'Uthman, the judge of 'Unayzah.
The last of from whom he studied the fields of principles of fiqh, fiqh, tawhid, tafsir and arabic language, and he stayed with him until he died.
The Shaykh was very knowledgeable in the fields of fiqh and its principles, and tawhid and its branches. He was widely read in the various works of Shaykh ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibn Al-Qayyim. He was also well versed in the field of commentary of the Qur'an, and he wrote a tafsir of the Qur'an in eight volumes, which he later summarized in a single volume. Among his other works are several books on fiqh, commentaries on ahadith, small treatises on fundamental rules regarding different fields of knowledge, a compendium of his legal opinions (fatawa), and a collection of his sermons in three volumes.
He was quite famous for his noble manners; very humble to both the elderly and the young. He was indifferent to this world and its glory, not caring for rank, power or glory.
He died on the night of Thursday, the 23rd of Jumada ath-Thani 1376H in his hometown of 'Unayzah. May Allah have mercy on him, and give us the benefit of his books and his knowledge. Amin.
(s) Useful Ways of Leading a Happy Life