Sage: a person, especially an old man, who is wise. From Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus.
Throughout the centuries, the human civilization produces legends, myths, folktales, and stories about the great sages, thinkers who build societies, imbued it with wisdom and prophetic vision and messages.
Interestingly enough, there are many traditions within our course of history having the name of Seven Sages. Saptarishi, Apkallu, Seven Sages of Greece, Seven Sages of Bamboo Grove, and even the sage from biblical references.
One prominent sage in Quranic tradition is Khidr. The name itself derives from the word (الخضر), meaning: The Green One. While the name did not mention in the Quran, through many sources and stories from The Prophet, the name is indeed Khidr. The name also suggests the one who brings life as one narrated that when Khidr sitting in the desert, full of sand and stone, it becomes green, trees and garden come out from nowhere.
إِنَّمَا سُمِّيَ الْخَضِرُ أَنَّهُ جَلَسَ عَلَى فَرْوَةٍ بَيْضَاءَ فَإِذَا هِيَ تَهْتَزُّ مِنْ خَلْفِهِ خَضْرَاءَ
The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Al-Khidr was named so because he sat over a barren white land, it turned green with plantation after (his sitting over it.” [Sahih Bukhari 3402]
Khidr is a description of God’s servant who possesses great wisdom and mystic knowledge. In many traditions, the figure syncretized over the time with other figures, such as Vishnu, Sorush, Saint Sarkis, Saint George and John The Baptist. In the Muslim tradition, Khidr is widely known as a spiritual teacher for Prophet Musa ‘alaihissalam as he teaches him in Surah Kahf. While some views Khidr as one of the immortal prophets that lived over the centuries as narrated by some texts.
وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِفَتَاهُ لَا أَبْرَحُ حَتَّىٰ أَبْلُغَ مَجْمَعَ الْبَحْرَيْنِ أَوْ أَمْضِيَ حُقُبًا
And [mention] when Moses said to his servant, “I will not cease [traveling] until I reach the junction of the two seas or continue for a long period.” [QS. 18: 60]
فَوَجَدَا عَبْدًا مِّنْ عِبَادِنَا آتَيْنَاهُ رَحْمَةً مِّنْ عِندِنَا وَعَلَّمْنَاهُ مِن لَّدُنَّا عِلْمًا
And they found a servant from among Our servants to whom we had given mercy from us and had taught him from Us a [certain] knowledge. [QS. 18:65]
This so-called Great Sage, Khidr: The Green One, is vast with hidden knowledge of reality, one that should pursue learning if he wants to unveil the knowledge within the world of unseen. Khidr symbolizes the pursuit of all knowledge, in particular, the spiritual world and its secret.
Interestingly, the name “Khidr” did not even mention in the Quran! The name is hidden as though we could seek the true hidden knowledge from this abundantly vast universe while recites the Quran longing for guidance.
As a tribute for seeking all knowledge known by this worldly universe and hereafter, I dedicated myself to write and share to benefit humanity around the globe.
May Allah bless this path of a true seeker.
disclaimer: I am writing not representing any sects of Islam or any Muslim social group or organizations.