Safwan ibn ‘Assal al-Muradi (radhiallahu `anhu) said:
‘I came to the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) and said, ‘O Messenger of Allah! I came to seek knowledge.’
So he (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said, ‘Welcome O’ seeker of knowledge! Indeed the Angels come to the seeker of knowledge and lower their wings for him. Then they climb each on top of the other until they reach the lower heaven, out of love for that which he seeks.’
– Hadith Hasan, reported by al-Hakim, al-Tabarani and Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr in his Jami’
The first thing he mentioned was how the angels are the companions of the seeker of knowledge, because the reality is: this is a path of difficulty, requiring firm aspirations and determination – and hence true companions become a rarity.