A section of the people .... made capital out of their own ignorance.

When I read this I immediately thought of a certain British commentator who denies the anthropogenic contribution to climate change and has attracted a large following.

What may surprise you is that this comes from Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari, founder of the more ‘conservative’ (to give it a label) branch of Islamic philosophy.  This is as opposed to what we might consider the more ‘liberal’ wing, the Mu'tazilites.  The quote packs even more punch when read in context:
A section of the people (i.e., the Thahirites and other orthodox people) made capital out of their own ignorance; discussions and rational thinking about matters of faith became a heavy burden for them, and, therefore, they became inclined to blind faith and blind following (taqlid). They condemned those who tried to rationalize the principles of religion as `innovators.' They considered discussion about motion, rest, body, accident, colour, space, atom, the leaping of atoms, and attributes of God, to be an innovation and a sin. They said that had such discussions been the right thing, the Prophet and his Companions would have definitely done so; they further pointed out that the Prophet, before his death, discussed and fully explained all those matters which were necessary from the religious point of view, leaving none of them to be discussed by his followers; and since he did not discuss the problems mentioned above, it was evident that to discuss them must be regarded as an innovation.
Readers probably know who is the British commentator I am referring to, but I doubt if he would listen to reason from such a source.