Glorifying Allah the Exalted by mentioning His Names and Attributes

beautiful names of Allah

Glorifying Allah the Exalted by mentioning His Names and Attributes

Allah the Exalted said,

“He is Allah, beside Whom La ilaha illa Huwa, the All-Knower of the unseen and the seen. He is the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. He is Allah, beside Whom La ilaha illa Huwa, Al-Malik, Al-Quddus, As-Salam, Al-Mu’min, Al-Muhaymin, Al-‘Aziz, Al-Jabbar, Al-Mutakabbir. Glory be to Allah! Above all that they associate as partners with Him. He is Allah, Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari, Al-Musawwir. To Him belong the Best Names. All that is in the heavens and the earth glorify Him. And He is the Almighty, the All-Wise” [Surah al-Hashr, 59:22-24]

Allah states that He Alone is worthy of worship, there is no Lord or God for the existence, except Him. All that is being worshipped instead of Allah are false deities. Allah is the All-Knower in the unseen and the seen, He knows all that pertains to the creations that we see, and those we cannot see. Nothing in heaven or on earth ever escapes His knowledge, no matter how great or insignificant, big or small, including ants in darkness.

Allah’s statement,

“He is the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.” asserts that Allah is the Owner of the wide encompassing mercy that entails all of His creation. He is Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim of this life and the Hereafter. Allah the Exalted said in other Ayat,

“And My mercy embraces all things.” [7:156],

“Your Lord has written (prescribed) mercy for Himself.” [6:54], and,

“Say: “In the bounty of Allah, and in His mercy; — therein let them rejoice.” That is better than what (the wealth) they amass.” [10:58]

The Meaning of Ar-Rahman Ar-Rahim – the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim are two names derived from Ar-Rahmah (the mercy), but Rahman has more meanings that pertain to mercy than Ar-Rahim. There is a statement by Ibn Jarir that indicates that there is a consensus on this meaning. Further, Al-Qurtubi said, “The proof that these names are derived (from Ar-Rahmah), is what At-Tirmidhi recorded – and graded Sahih from ‘Abdur-Rahman bin ‘Awf that he heard the Messenger of Allah say,

“Allah the Exalted said, ‘I Am Ar-Rahman. I created the Raham (womb, i.e. family relations) and derived a name for it from My Name. Hence, whoever keeps it, I will keep ties to him, and whoever severs it, I will sever ties with him.'” He then said, “This is a text that indicates the derivation.” He then said, “The Arabs denied the name Ar-Rahman, because of their ignorance about Allah and His attributes.”

Al-Qurtubi said, “It was said that both Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim have the same meaning, such as the words Nadman and Nadim, as Abu ‘Ubayd has stated. Abu ‘Ali Al-Farisi said, “‘Ar-Rahman, which is exclusively for Allah, is a name that encompasses every type of mercy that Allah has. Ar-Rahim is what effects the believers, for Allah said,

“And He is ever Rahim (merciful) to the believers.” [33:43]

Also, Ibn ‘Abbas said – about Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim, “They are two soft names, one of them is softer than the other (meaning it carries more implications of mercy).”

Ibn Jarir said; As-Surri bin Yahya At-Tamimi narrated to me that ‘Uthman bin Zufar related that Al-‘Azrami said about Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim, “He is Ar-Rahman with all creation and Ar-Rahim with the believers.” Hence. Allah’s statements,

“Then He rose over (Istawa) the Throne (in a manner that suits His majesty), Ar-Rahman” [25:59], and,

“Ar-Rahman (Allah) rose over (Istawa) the (Mighty) Throne (in a manner that suits His majesty).” [20:5]

Allah thus mentioned the Istawa – rising over the Throne – along with His Name Ar-Rahman, to indicate that His mercy encompasses all of His creation. Allah also said,

“And He is ever Rahim (merciful) to the believers”, thus encompassing the believers with His Name Ar-Rahim. They said, “This testifies to the fact that Ar-Rahman carries a broader scope of meanings pertaining to the mercy of Allah with His creation in both lives. Meanwhile, Ar-Rahim is exclusively for the believers.” Yet, we should mention that there is a supplication that reads,

“The Rahman and the Rahim of this life and the Hereafter”

Allah’s Name Ar-Rahman is exclusively His. For instance, Allah said,

“Say (O Muhammad (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam)): “Invoke Allah or invoke Ar-Rahman (Allah), by whatever name you invoke Him (it is the same), for to Him belong the Best Names” [17:110], and,

“And ask (O Muhammad (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam)) those of Our Messengers whom We sent before you: “Did We ever appoint alihah (gods) to be worshipped besides Ar-Rahman (Most Gracious, Allah)”” [43:45].

Allah the Exalted said,

“He is Allah, beside Whom La ilaha illa Huwa, Al-Malik.” Al-Malik, meaning “The Owner and King of all things,” Who has full power over them without resistance or hindrance. Allah’s statement,

“Al-Quddus,” meaning “The Pure,” according to Wahb bin Munabbih, while Mujahid and Qatadah said that Al-Quddus means “The Blessed.” Ibn Jurayj said that Al-Quddus means “He Whom the honorable angels glorify.”

“As-Salam,” meaning “Free from any defects or shortcomings that lessen or decrease His perfect attributes and actions.” Allah’s statement,

“Al-Mu’min,” means “Who has granted safety to His servants by promising that He will never be unjust to them, ” according to Ad-Dahhak who reported it from Ibn ‘Abbas. Qatadah said that Al-Mu’min means that “Allah affirms that His statements are true,” while Ibn Zayd said that it means, “He attested to His faithful servants’ having faith in Him.” Allah’s statement,

“Al-Muhaymin,” means, according to Ibn ‘Abbas and others, “The Witness for His servants actions,” that is, the Ever-Watcher over them. Allah said in similar Ayat,

“And Allah is Witness over all things.” [58:6],

“and moreover Allah is Witness over what they used to do.” [10:46], and,

“Is then He (Allah) Who takes charge (guards) of every person and knows all that he has earned” [13:33] Allah said,

“Al-‘Aziz,” meaning that “He is the Almighty, Dominant over all things.” Therefore, His majesty is never violated, due to His might, greatness, irresistible power and pride. Allah said;

“Al-Jabbar, Al-Mutakabbir”, meaning “The Only One worthy of being the Compeller and Supreme.” There is a Hadith in the Sahih Collection in which Allah said,

“Might is My Izar and pride is My Rida; if anyone disputes any one of them with Me, then I will punish him.” Allah the Exalted said,

“Glory be to Allah! (High is He) above all that they associate as partners with Him.”, then He said,

“He is Allah, Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari, Al-Musawwir.” Al-Khaliq refers to measuring and proportioning, Al-Bari refers to inventing and bringing into existence what He has created and measured. Surely, none except Allah is able to measure, bring forth and create whatever He wills to come to existence. Allah’s statement,

“Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari, Al-Musawwir.” means, if Allah wills something, He merely says to it “be” and it comes to existence in the form that He wills and the shape He chooses,

“In whatever form He willed, He put you together.” [82:8] Allah describing Himself as being Al-Musawwir, Who brings into existence anything He wills in the shape and form He decides.

Al-Asma’ Al-Husna

Allah the Exalted said,

“To Him belong Al-Asma’ Al-Husna (the Best Names).”

Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam) said,

“Verily, Allah has ninety-nine Names, a hundred less one; whoever counts (and preserves) them, will enter Paradise. Allah is Witr (One) and loves Al-Witr (the odd numbered things),” The Two Sahihs collected this Hadith. We should state that Allah’s Names are not restricted to only ninety-nine. For instance, in his Musnad, Imam Ahmad recorded that ‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud said that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam) said;

“Any person who is overcome by sadness or grief and supplicates, ‘O Allah! I am Your servant, son of Your female servant. My forelock is in Your Hand. Your decision concerning me shall certainly come to pass. Just is Your Judgement about me. I invoke You by every Name that You have and that You called Yourself by, sent down in Your Book, taught to any of Your creatures, or kept with You in the knowledge of the Unseen that is with You. Make the Glorious Quran the spring of my heart, the light of my chest, the remover of my grief and the dissipater of my concern.’ Surely, Allah will remove his grief and sadness and exchange them for delight.” The Prophet (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam) was asked “O Messenger of Allah! Should we learn these words?” He (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam) said,

“Yes. It is an obligation on all those who hear this supplication to learn it.” Al-‘Awfi said that Ibn ‘Abbas said about Allah’s statement,

“and leave the company of those who belie His Names” [7:180]

“To belie Allah’s Names includes saying that Al-Lat (an idol) derived from Allah’s Name.’ Ibn Jurayj narrated from Mujahid that he commented,

“and leave the company of those who belie His Names” [7:180] “They derived Al-Lat (an idol’s name) from Allah, and Al-‘Uzza (another idol) from Al-‘Aziz (the All-Mighty).” Qatadah stated that Ilhad refers to associating others with Allah in His Names (such as calling an idol Al-‘Uzza). The word Ilhad (used in the Ayah in another from) means deviation, wickedness, injustice and straying. The hole in the grave is called Lahd, because it is a hole within a hole, that is turned towards the Qiblah (the direction of the prayer).

Everything praises and glorifies Allah

Allah’s statement,

“All that is in the heavens and the earth glorify Him.” is similar to His other statement,

“The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him and there is not a thing but glorifies His praise. But you understand not their glorification. Truly, He is Ever Forbearing, Oft–Forgiving.” [17:44] Allah’s statement,

“and He is Al-‘Aziz” The Almighty, meaning, His greatness is never humbled,

“Al-Hakim” the All-Wise, in His legislation and decrees.

[Taken from Tafsir Ibn Katheer]

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