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Old 07-18-2005, 10:07 PM   #1
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[] The Best Remembrance

The Best Remembrance
by Yasir Qadhi

I have just recited before you the last few verses of Surat ul Hasr. You have heard these verses recited before in various salawat. They are a favorite of qura and hufadh and aimma, because of their sweetness and beauty and because of their conciseness and profound meanings. So Insha Allah in today’s short lecture, let me elaborate on some of the benefits we can extract from these last verses of Surat ul Hasr.

Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - says: “Oh you who believe,” Oh you who believe, this is an address, Allah is calling out to those who proclaim to be Muslim. Ibn Mas’oud said: “Whenever you hear the phrase ‘ya ayuhal ladhina amanu’, pay attention because it is addressed to you.” Pay attention to what Allah is about to tell you.

“Have the taqwa of Allah.” The taqwa of Allah is the most comprehensive and concise legacy that Allah has given us in the Qur’an. “We have legislated and advised the people before you and you to have the taqwa of Allah.” What is the taqwa of Allah? That is a topic in and of itself, we just have to mention it and move on.

The taqwa of Allah. Taqwa is a word coming from the Arabic root waqa, and waqa means to build a barrier, or to protect, prevent. So taqwa is a barrier that you build to save yourself from the punishment of Allah; this is what taqwa is. It is a barrier, a fortress, a wall that you build to protect yourself from the punishment of Allah. But what is this wall built of? Is it built of bricks and mortars and stones? No. It is built of actions. It is built by doing what Allah has told you to do and by abstaining from what Allah has prohibited you against. This is the building of taqwa.

So have the taqwa of Allah and let each and every person, let each and every soul, examine what it has prepared for tomorrow. Is there anyone sitting here today who is not prepared materialistically for tomorrow? Everyone knows where he is going to go to sleep, what he is going to wear when he goes to sleep. Everyone knows what he will do tomorrow - go to work, go to school. Everyone knows what or where he will eat, how he will get to work, what he will do in his spare time - he has planned it out. But Allah is not talking about this.

Allah is saying just like you have prepared for your tomorrow - you know what you are going to do; you have a rough schedule - have you prepared for the REAL tomorrow? Have you prepared for the Akhirah? For Jannah and Nar and the Day of Judgment? Allah calls it tomorrow because when you compare anything that is finite to anything that is infinite, there is no comparison. Simple mathematics - you can have the largest number, when you compare to infinity, the ratio is nothing.

We have in this world forty, fifty, sixty, seventy, eighty years that is all. Compare that to infinity, there is no comparison. So comparing to that large span of time, it is as if that will happen tomorrow, even if there are thirty years left, forty years left. And that is a big IF. Who amongst us knows when death will happen? We see people dying at all ages. Children, young, old, nobody can guarantee that there will be a tomorrow. A time will come when literally that will be your last day and last night on the face of this earth, and there will be a literal tomorrow.

So Allah is reminding us metaphorically and literally to be prepared for tomorrow. Metaphorically, no matter how many years you have left, can you compare your life to the real life of the Akhirah? And literally, do you know when you are going to die? There will come a time when you will go to sleep in your bed and it will be the last time that you ever sleep in that bed, and the next day will come and you will find yourself awake, not asleep, in a bed of sand and rock and dust. So be prepared for your tomorrow.

Allah is also reminding us in this verse that we do not have any bosses in Islam. In our work we have a boss. He will exam what we have done, he will see if I have done the work for today or not, every week, every month, every year there is going to be a report, a critique. Similarly, in school our professors and teachers will examine us, but not in our life.

In our religion, we have no bosses. No one will check, have you prayed today or not. No one will check, have you been a good Muslim today or not. Nobody. Absolutely nobody. Who will do this? You have to do it for yourself. Be an examiner to yourself. As ‘Umar ibn al Khattab used to say, “Take a count of yourself before you will be taken account of.”

See what you have prepared for tomorrow. How will you respond to Allah? What will you say on the Day of Judgment? And subhanAllah, imagine my dear brothers and sisters, a teacher coming into class the first day, the first day of class, and he will say, “On the board, these will be the questions you will be asked on the final exam. Number one, number two, number three, number four, number five.” The first day of class he comes in and announces, this is your exam. If you pass this exam you pass the class. Is it conceivable that any person of intelligence will fail that class? Is it possible? Of course not.

Then why is it when we know the five questions on the Day of Judgment, yet the vast majority of mankind will fail them. We know the five questions on the Day of Judgment, Allah - ‘Azza wa Jal - will ask us, he will ask us about our life, what we did with it, our wealth, where did we earn it from, how did we spend it? He will ask us about our knowledge, how much we acted upon it. He will ask us about our health and what we did with it. All of these questions, the Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - has told us this will be your final exam. What more do we want? We know the questions. We KNOW the questions. But we have not prepared for them.

So Allah reminds us, have taqwa in Allah. Account yourself before you are being taken account of. Examine yourself before it is too late to be examined, and have the taqwa of Allah. Allah repeats it again, “Verily Allah is all aware of what you are doing.”

Even though you have forgotten and I have forgotten the sins of yesterday, and the day before and the years before, Allah has not forgotten about them. Even though we might forget some good we have done, trivialized that good, but we have done it sincerely for the sake of Allah, Allah will bring it on the Day of Judgment and he will reward us for that good. So never forget that Allah is well aware of all that you do.

“And do not be like those who forgot about Allah Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala.” Do not be like those who FORGOT Allah. What is the meaning of forgetting Allah? To forget means to not show any concern, to not care. And that is why things that are very important to you, you never forget them. Things that are important to you, you do not forget them. Does anybody forget his name, his date of birth, where he lives? He never forgets this. Where to get his daily food from, he does not forget because it is a matter of life and death for him. Only things which are not that important, that is what you have forgotten.

Allah says in the Qur’an, He does not say do not reject Allah. No, He says a far more precise term, “Do not be amongst those who FORGOT Allah.” There are many who proclaim to believe in Allah but do not believe in Him. There are many who profess eman, but do not worship Allah. They have forgotten Allah. So Allah says, do not be amongst those who have forgotten Me.

What happens when you forget about Allah? This is a powerful, a profound verse. Allah caused them to forget themselves. When you forget Allah Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala, you forget yourself. Ponder over that for a moment. When you ignore Allah, you ignore yourself. When you remove Allah from the picture, you remove yourself as well. What is the meaning of this verse? How can you forget yourself or ignore yourself?

We find that those who have rejected Allah, they are the ones who are the most conscious of themselves in terms of their material lives, their wealth, the wealth that they are hoarding and amassing, the luxuries that they want to live, they are the most conscious, far more conscious than any other Muslims, they have not forgotten themselves.

But this is not the meaning of forgetting here. Allah is basically stating, that when you forget about Allah, when you ignore Allah, you forget about your purpose of life in the process. You forget why you are here, what you are doing on the face of this earth. When you remove Allah from the picture you do not have a picture. You have no purpose of existence, this is what Allah is referring to. Why are you living when you do not have a God to worship?

And that is why Allah has described those who worship Allah properly. In the Qur’an he describes them with many descriptions. Of the descriptions is that they have a light. What is the purpose of the light right now? It tells you where you are, it tells you the obstacles, it tells you your purpose, it tells you how to get to that purpose, the closest path. If I had to get to the exit the light would tell me how to get there. Allah describes the believers, they have a light, the purpose of the light, you have a path you have a goal, you know how to get to that goal.

And Allah describes those who do not worship Him as wandering aimlessly in the dark. What a beautiful description, what a perfect picture. They do not have a goal. Not even not having a goal, they would not even know how to get there if they had one. So they wander around aimlessly, stumbling, falling about, wandering aimlessly following their desires. Everyday they wake up, they have no purpose for life. They are worshipping themselves, because they have rejected a deity worthy of worship. So Allah says, do not be like those who have forgotten Allah because when you forget Allah, you forget yourself.

“Verily, those are those who have gone astray. Had we revealed this Qur’an to a mountain it would have crumbled and shattered to dust out of a fear of Allah.” Why is Allah telling us this? Allah is reminding us of the effectiveness and the power of this book. That even if we had revealed it to a structure, that is taken to be an icon of stability - rocks, mountains - if they were to recite the Qur’an and believe in it and realize and appreciate its message, they would shatter to dust.

How about you oh frail humans? Oh you who have been created from water and sand. Oh you who have been made from clay and brittle bones! Why do you not shed a tear for Allah’s fear? Why do you not tremble when the Qur’an is recited to you?

In fact, Allah describes the believers, “The believers are those who when Allah’s name is mentioned, their hearts tremble with fear. When our verses are recited to them, their eman shoots up.” These are the believers. Allah describes the believers, when they hear the Qur’an, “You find that their eyes fill up with tears and they are crying because of the truth that they know.” If the mountain can shatter, surely our hearts can tremble. If the mountain can be crushed and destroyed, surely our eyes can shed a tear or two.

Allah reminds us about the real power of the Qur’an and the fact that it is ourselves who have become hard hearted towards it. And Allah then says - and this is the purpose the lecture now - “He is Allah,” Laa ilaaha illahu. How do we translate Laa ilaaha illahu? There is no deity, no being, no object worthy of our worship, our veneration, our love, our hope, our sajdah, our fear, our tawakkul, our sabr, except for Allah. This is the meaning of Laa ilaaha illa Allah.

Allah keeps on reminding us because this is the purpose of our worship, the purpose of our existence. Allah says do not be like those who have forgotten about Allah, but amongst those who remember Allah.

How will you know who Allah is? How will you know who Allah is? This is a question you have to ask yourself, how do I know my Creator? Have we seen Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? Has any human being seen Allah? Has any human being seen Allah? The Prophet Musa saw Allah? “Musa asked to see Allah. You will not be able to see Me but look at the mountain, if the mountain is able to withstand looking at Me then you can see Me.”

When Allah showed a small portion of himself,” the hadith says, “to the mountain, the mountain crumbled to dust, and Musa fell unconscious.” The mountain could not bear to see Allah. Allah is reminding Musa, if the mountain cannot see Me, how can you see Me?

No human being has seen Allah, yet. YET. Why have I said yet? Because, the greatest blessing that a believer shall be given is to look at Allah Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala. “On that day faces shall be expecting,” waiting with joy, anticipation, why? “They are going to be looking at Allah -Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala.” The prophets have not seen Allah - ‘Azza wa Jal -, yet. They will see Allah ‘Azza wa Jal in the future. So we have not seen Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala.

The Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - did not see Allah because he was asked by A’isha, “Did you see your Lord?” He said, “Light, how could I see him?” What is this light he is referring to? The hijab. Allah has a hijab, did you know this? Sisters, did you know this? Allah as a hijab, but not like the hijab you wear of course. His hijab is light itself. Light itself is His hijab.

The Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - said, “Were this hijab to be removed, then the bright light of his face, would destroy all that it sees.” Meaning everything. The creation could not bear to look at Allah, so Allah out of mercy to the creation has a hijab. And that hijab is light itself.

So when A’isha said, “Did you see your Lord?” He said, “Light, how could I see him?” So he did not see Allah with his vision, Ibn Abbas said he saw Allah with his heart. That is a different topic in aqeedah, aqeedah 301. If you take Al Maghrib Insha Allah, this will be in 301 Insha Allah. Just to entice you for the class.

Going back to the topic, so we have not seen Allah. Have we spoken with Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? Some of us amongst mankind have. Who are these people? We know Musa spoke with Allah directly, we know the Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - spoke with Allah directly. Directly, no interpreters, no middle men.

In the journey of ‘Isra wa Miraj, the Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - was raised up to the heavens, Jibril took him up to the heavens, and he reached a place where Jibril said I cannot go any further, you go alone. Jibril could not ascend beyond a certain level. He said I do not have permission, I do not have the card, I do not have the pass to enter beyond this. You go alone.

So the Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - went up alone, no Jibril, no angels, and he spoke directly with Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala. What happened at this place? Allah legislated, what did he legislate? The five prayers. This is the only legislation in our sharee’ah where Allah directly told the Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - what to do what not to do. All the other legislations came through Jibril. This shows you the status of the prayer in Islam.

Going back, so we have not spoken with Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala. WE have not, some of the prophets have. So how do we know about Allah? How do we know about Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? Allah tells us, do not be like those who do not know Me, who ignore Me, who forget about Me. Be amongst those who know Me.

How do we know Allah? Immediately after Allah tells us not be to among those who have forgotten Him, He then mentions His Names and Attributes, His Asmaa was Sifat. Why? This is how you will know what Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - is. Our primary source of knowledge about our Creator is His names and attributes. Have you ever wondered, my dear brothers and sisters, why the Qur’an is full of Allah’s names and attributes? Why every second verse ends in a Name and Attribute? Is it just to fill the lines? Is it just to have a rhyming sequence of the ending of the ayat? Why? Allah’s Names and Attributes are much more than his prohibitions and commands in the Qur’an, the halal and the haraam. Allah’s Names and Attributes are much more than descriptions of Jannah and Nar. Allah’s Names and Attributes are much more than the stories of the prophets of old, much more than this.

Why has He concentrated on this topic? Because this is the fundamental building block of our eman. The fundamental building block, how do we know who Allah is? How can we love Allah when we do not know who He is? How can we fear Allah when we do not know His Names and Attributes? How can we put our trust in Allah when we do not know His descriptions?

The fundamental building block of eman is the knowledge of Allah. And the knowledge of Allah is attained through His Names and Attributes. And that is why the Qur’an is full of Allah’s Names and Attributes. And that is why, right after this verse where Allah says do not be amongst those who have forgotten Allah, He then mentions some of His many names and attributes. He is the one who knows the seen and the hidden, the ghaib, that which is hidden, nobody knows it, the shahadah, that which is apparent, everybody knows it.

So Allah knows everything. Allah knows the past. Allah reminds the Prophet - Sal Allaahu Alayhi wa Sallam - in the Qur’an, when he mentions to him stories of the people of old, Allah says to him, you were not there oh Mohammad when this happened. You were not there when they tried to kill Musa. You were not there when they were arguing over Maryam and who would take over her. You were not there when I inspired Musa on Mount Sinai, on Mount Toor. You were not there. How do you know this? Allah told you because He knows the past.

Allah knows the present. Allah says in the Qur’an, “Not a leaf falls except that He knows it. Not a seed sprouts out, even in the darkness of the soil, except that Allah knows it.” Allah knows the present.

Allah knows the future. Allah describes what will happen on the Day of Judgment. He describes conversations between people of Jannah and people of Nar. The Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - has told us much of the Day of Judgment and the signs of the Day of Judgment, through Allah’s knowledge.

So Allah knows the past and the present and the future. But Allah’s knowledge is not limited to this. Allah knows that which has happened, and that which is happening, and that which will happen, yes, but He also knows, now you have to pay attention a little bit, He also knows that which will not happen. Were it to happen, how it would happen, and what would happen if it happened. Want me to repeat that? Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - knows that which will NOT happen, if it were to happen, how it would happen and what would happen if that which did not happen happened. Does that make sense now? Let me give you an example to help clarify my point. Just to show you the infinite knowledge of Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala.

Can Allah send the kufar back to this world and give them another chance? Yes, He can. It is possible for Allah to do. Can Allah send the kufar on the Day of Judgment back to this world and give them another chance, can He resurrect them again and say, ok fine you have another chance? Of course He can. It is very easy to do. But Allah says in the Qur’an He shall not do it. “The statement has come forth from me.” The ruling has come forth, right, that this shall not happen. So Allah will not do it, even though He could do it.

Allah says in the Qur’an that on the Day of Judgment the kufar will ask to be given another chance, and they will want to come back to this earth. And Allah says, “If We were to give them this chance,” IF this were to happen, will it happen, no, but Allah’s knowledge is so perfect, if this were to happen, “they would still do what they had done before.” They would not be better people. So Allah’s knowledge is so perfect that he knows what will not happen, if it happens how it will happen and what will happen if it happens. Now does it make sense?

Okay, there is yet another one so pay even more attention. Okay, we are just starting, we are just warming up now. Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - even knows that which will not and CANNOT happen, if it were to happen what would happen. That which CANNOT happen, CANNOT. Certain things simply cannot occur. Yet, Allah knows, IF they were to occur, what would happen if that which is impossible to happen, happens. THAT is Allah’s knowledge.

Certain things are simply not possible to happen. Of those things that are not possible to happen is the existence of another God. It is not possible for there to be another God. You cannot create a god, because if you create the god what would that be? That would not be a god, would it? So it is a logical impossibility. This is something that cannot happen, simply. No being can will this to happen. Yet, Allah knows, IF that were to happen what would happen.

And the brother quoted the verse, and there is more than one verse in the Qur’an, “If there were other gods besides Allah, the creation would fall into complete chaos.” Can there be gods besides Allah? There CANNOT be. Yet, Allah’s knowledge is so infinite that he knows what would happen if there were gods besides Him.

In another verse, Allah says in Surat ul Isra, “If there were others besides Allah,” or other gods besides Allah, “they would be fighting one another and they would try to show their superiority over the other.” IF there were other gods besides Allah. Can there be other gods besides Allah? No. Yet, Allah’s knowledge is so perfect that he even knows the impossible and if that which is not possible were is to become possible what would happen.

This is the knowledge of Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala. This is how perfect He is. He is The Rahman and The Rahim. He is The Rahman and The Rahim, two very common names of Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala.

Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim come from the same root, rahima, which means to show mercy, to be compassionate towards. By deriving two names from the same root, Allah is emphasizing His merciful nature. Not one, but two names, from the same root, to show you He is the Ever-Merciful, the All-Merciful.

“Allah’s mercy encompasses everything.” It surrounds everything. Were it not for Allah’s mercy we would not be here. Nothing would exist without Allah’s mercy. Therefore, Allah says, “My mercy surrounds everything.” It is a sign of Allah’s mercy we exist, we sit, we live, we eat, we drink, we procreate, we go to work. It is a sign of Allah’s mercy we are Muslims, we believe in Him, we worship Him. All of this is a manifestation of Allah’s mercy.

As Allah says in the Qur’an, “Your Lord has decreed upon Himself that He shall be Merciful.” No one can decree against Allah. Allah decrees upon Himself. No one can write the rules for Allah, Allah writes the rules for Himself. “Your Lord has decreed upon HIMSELF that He shall be Merciful.”

What is the difference between Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim? Ar-Rahman characterizes Allah’s mercy as it relates to His divine essence. So, His divine essence, Allah’s being is always merciful by nature. By nature Allah is merciful, ALWAYS. No exceptions, He is Ar-Rahman.

And that is why no created object can call himself Rahman. No creation, it is not allowed, even without the alif laam. You cannot say Rahman, somebody is Rahman. Because that would mean he is always merciful in everything that he does, and that is not true. Nobody is always merciful, except for Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala -, Ar-Rahman.

Ar-Rahim characterizes Allah’s mercy in relationship, not to His essence but to His actions. So His actions are merciful. Therefore, He can pick and choose to be extra merciful to certain people, to certain beings, and He has done so. “Allah is Ar-Rahim to the believers.” So because Allah is Ar-Rahman, even the kufar are given food and water and life. He is Ar-Rahman. Even though they curse Allah, a’oodhubillah, they reject Allah, they make fun of the prophets, Allah is Ar-Rahman, He will still provide for them.

But He is not Rahim to everyone. He is Rahim to the believers only. So in the hereafter, they shall be given nothing. Only the believers shall be shown that extra blessing in the hereafter.
Allah is also Al-Malik, The King. Are there other kings besides Allah? There are kings. There are kings, there are maliks. Allah calls people in the Qur’an 'malik'. “There was a king that was taking every ship.” Allah calls him a king in the Qur’an, Malik. Yes, king, a king, Allah called him a king.

So, there are many who profess to be kings, true. But Allah is not like any king. Allah is Malik ul Mulk, the King of Kings and the Owner of Kings. Who can claim to be the King of Kings except for Allah? There are many kings that walk the face of this earth, but who amongst them can claim complete submission and obedience such that nothing happens except with his knowledge and will and power? What king can claim this? Except for Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala. THAT is the true king. There are many kings that walk the face of this earth, but who amongst them can make others kings and take away kingdoms from others? What king can make another king? No king can do so, except for Allah.

“Allah is the King of Kings. He makes people kings and He takes kingdoms away from people.” What king can claim this besides Allah? Allah is Maliki Yowmi Deen, the King and the Master of the Day of Judgment. Is He not the King before and after the Day of Judgment? Of course. So why has He specified that He is the King on this day alone? What is the reason for specifying this day? Because the king on that day, the day that all of mankind shall be gathered, the day that the real judgment shall be given, who shall go to Jannah, who shall go to Jahannam, the One who is the controller on THAT day, is the Controller and King of all other days. The One who shall judge the kings and the peasants on the Day of Judgment, He is the real king before and after the Day of Judgment as well.

So Allah specifies He is the King before and after the Day of Judgment because the King and the Owner on that day, must be the King of all other days. Al Qudus and As-Salam. Allah is Al-Qudus. Al-Qudus means The Blessed and The Holy. Because He is Al-Qudus, He has no partners, He has no children, He has no ancestors, He is the holy, the pure.

As-Salaam, The One who has no imperfections, The One whom all peace comes from. As-Salaam, when we see our Muslim brothers we say, As Salaamu Alaikum. What does it mean? It means may no harm come from me to you, may peace always be around you, no evil you shall see from me, that is why you say As Salaamu Alaikum. You shall not see any evil, and you make a du’aa, you shall not see any evil from any other being as well. This is the meaning of As-Salaam, no evil, no imperfection.

So Allah is As-Salaam because no evil is attributed to Him. Allah is As-Salaam because all peace and good comes from Him. Allah is As-Salaam because He shall greet the believers with the greeting of salaam. “When the believers enter Jannah,” and one of the names of Jannah is Dar us Salaam, why is it called Dar us Salaam? Because when you enter Jannah, no harm shall come to you after that. “When they enter Jannah Allah will greet them with salaam.” And when Allah sends salaam to anyone, no harm can touch him. So Allah will greet the believers when they enter Dar us Salaam with the greeting of salaam. He is As-Salaam.

Al-Mumin. What is the meaning of mumin? Everybody knows this. The believer. Allah has called Himself a believer? Can somebody explain? Allah has called Himself a believer? No, Al-Mumin is The Believer. Yes? He believes in Himself and He believes in the prophets and He believes in the books. “Allah Himself testifies to Laa ilaaha illa Allah.” Allah HIMSELF is a believer, yes! He believes in Laa ilaaha illa Allah. He believes in the truthfulness of His prophets, He believes in the books He has revealed.

So when we have faith, and we know that Allah also is Al-Mumin, then we do not care who amongst mankind rejects Islam; we shall never feel inferior, we shall never feel overcome, Allah is on our side. Allah believes what I believe, how can I be mistaken? So Al-Mumin increases our eman because we know He believes in what we believe. This is Al-Mumin.

Al-Muhaimin. Al-Muhaimin is The One who bares witness and records. He is this Overseer of everything. Nothing occurs except that Al-Muhaiman is aware of it. So Allah records the good of those who do good, and he records the evil of those who do evil. So the believer increases in his eman, and he realizes no matter how small of a good deed I do, Al-Muhaiman shall record that deed and reward me for it. And the sinner becomes scared, and he realizes there is not a single thing that he has done except that Al-Muhaimin has recorded it and will bring it out on the Day of Judgment.

Al-Aziz. The All Powerful, the All Mighty, the Glorious, the Majestic, Al-Aziz. Al-Aziz, who has ‘Izza? “Whoever wishes to have honor and glory let him know that all of it belongs to Allah.” This is Al-Aziz. There are many who pretend that they have some honor in this society, but who amongst them has so much ‘Izza that they can grant it to others and humiliate others if they want to? Only Al-Aziz because Allah said, “You make others honorable and you humiliate others.” This is Al-Aziz.

Al-Jabaar. Al-Jabaar, The Mighty, The Unconquerable, this is Al-Jabaar. The meaning of Al-Jabaar is The One who fills up any deficiency. So the servant is weak, he wants to do something but he does not have the power to do it, or the capability to do it, Al-Jabaar will give him that capability. He will fill up any weakness and allow him to get to that goal. This is Al-Jabaar.

Al-Mutakabbir. Arrogance. When you call somebody mutakabbir, you are insulting him. How can an insult be a name of Allah? How can an insult be a name of Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? When you get angry at someone, when you are being stubborn, when you are being arrogant, you say you are mutakabbir, you are being arrogant, haughty.

When you go to the actual root of this word mutakabbir, it means someone or some being who refuses to submit to another. This is the actual meaning of mutakabbir. Therefore, the one who rejects the truth, who rejects what you tell him to do, even though you are telling him the truth, he is being arrogant because he refuses to submit to you. So in his case it is an insult.

In the case of Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala -, this insult becomes the height of praise. Al-Mutakabbir, he who does not submit to any other being. Who is there that can claim submission from Allah? Who is there that can demand Allah submit Himself? What being is there that can demand such submission? There is no such being. So in Allah’s case, Al-Mutakabbir becomes the height of praise. No being can ask submission from Allah. Allah is the Creator of everything else. Everything submits itself to Allah, Allah submits Himself to nothing. This is Al-Mutakabbir.

“Allah is far exalted over that whom they worship besides Him.” Any being that is worshipped, the angels, the prophets, rocks and stones, can they claim these names and attributes? Of course not, they are not worthy of worship, how can you worship others besides Allah when you know that Allah has all of these names and attributes? Only He is worthy of worship.

“He is Allah, The Khaliq.” The Khaliq. The Khaliq is translated as Creator, but in fact the Arabic has a more precise meaning to it. And this is always a problem of language, always a problem. You can never really and truly become a scholar or understand Islam unless you learn Arabic. The Qur’an is in Arabic, the Sunnah is in Arabic, and that is enough of a reason to learn Arabic. These simple translations do not do justice, neither to the Qur’an, nor to the Sunnah, nor to the names and attributes of Allah.

Al-Khaliq is not just a Creator. Al-Khaliq, the actual meaning of khalaqa is to create from nothing without there being any model upon which to base your creation. Is there any one word of English that can convey this paragraph? To create from nothing, having no model upon which to base your creation. Every singe engineer, every single architect, he has a design, he has to think, he has to ponder, he has to design and then he creates. He does not create from nothing. He creates from something, he transforms one material into another.

This is not Al-Khaliq. Al-Khaliq is to create from nothing without having a design upon which to base the creation, this is Al-Khaliq. “Allah is the Creator of everything. Allah has created you and he has created all that you do.” Who can claim to be a Khaliq besides Allah? “Is there any Creator besides Allah? This is the creation of Allah around you, show me what those who you worship besides Allah have created?” This is the creation of Allah, everything is the creation of Allah.

What have those whom you worship besides Allah created? “Those whom you call out to besides Allah could not even create a fly even if they cooperated together,” they worked together, “to do so.” They could not even create a fly. All of them, call your false gods, call your idols, call even the prophets and saints that you worship, call your scientists and engineers and doctors, challenge them to create a fly from nothing. From nothing, this is the key.

Yes, they can transform, and I say in all honesty they might be able to do something here and there, modify some gene, all of this modern talk is going on and the scientists are getting arrogant and boastful because they can do these things, they have created a sheep by the name of Dolly they say, but what creation is this? No creation, this is a transformation. You have taken one thing and transformed it into another. But they cannot bring life. They cannot blow life into anything. Yes they might be able to modify a little bit, perhaps. Perhaps in the future they might be able to do so, but they will never be able to blow life into anything.

Only Allah brings about life. Also, this is not creation. As we said, creation means to bring out of nothing. They have not brought out of nothing. It also means to build or to make something without having a model. They are basing what they “create” on Allah’s model. They are modifying Allah’s creation, they are not doing something of their own.

So Allah says in the Qur’an, “All those whom you call out to besides Him, they cannot even create a fly.” This is one of my favorite verses. We will discuss it in a lot of detail in aqeedah 101 Insha Allah, great detail. Allah then says, “This fly,” even though they could not create it, Allah has created it. “If the fly were to take something from them,” the fly lands on a food, on your drink, on your sustenance, if the fly were to take something from them they would not have the power to retrieve what the fly stole from them.

How weak is man? Challenge any scientist, any scientist, any laboratory, any group of people to take back what a fly has taken from them. And you know what is so amazing about this verse, how or what is so special about the fly? Why did Allah mention a fly in this verse? There are many reasons. Of them, because it is something that is trivial in the eyes of many. Of them, it is something that is troublesome and they cannot even create it. And of them is that the digestive system of the fly is a unique digestive system, no other, or hardly any other being digests like the fly.

How does a fly digest its food? It breaks down the food on the surface of the food.
So, the point, a fly spits saliva out and the food is digested on location, not inside of it. This is one of the only animals that does this. This is the beauty of the verse here. Suppose a vulture comes, or a lion comes or anything else comes and takes your food, what does it do? It grabs it in its mouth and it runs away. So if you are smart enough, or powerful enough, whatever, you can take the food back, right? But not with a fly.

Allah says, He challenges them, to take what this fly has taken and bring it back because a fly does not take it physically; the fly has already digested the food by the time it leaves. Did the scientists of the time of the Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - know this? Of course not. This is the miraculous thing about the Qur’an. The fly, as soon as it lands, digests the food and goes away. Try to take that food and make it undigested, you cannot do so. So Allah mentions the fly here in particular.

Going back to the topic, Al-Khaliq. Allah is The Creator. About the fly, no, it is mentioned in the Qur’an that you will not be able to bring the food back from the fly. This is one of the last verses of Surat ul Hajj. You open the surah, on the right hand side, the top verse, it will be there in the normal green mushaf.

Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari. Al-Bari is The One who nourishes a being in its infancy, and it is a more specific type of Khaliq. Al-Khaliq is used to describe The Creator of Life and non living things. Al-Bari is used to describe the Creator of Life.

Allah not only creates inanimate objects, He is also Al-Bari, the one who creates ANIMATE objects. Beings, living beings, the One who nourishes them in their infancy, the One who causes to grow inside and then to become independent outside. This is of the connotations of Al-Bari. What word can translate this in English? There is no word.

Al-Bari means the one who brings out life from another life. So the mother has life in her womb. Al-Bari is the one who brings that life and separates it from the first life and it becomes independent life. This is Al-Bari. Who can claim this besides Allah?

Al-Khaliq, Al-Bari, Al-Musawir. Al-Musawir is one of my favorite names. Such a simple name, Al-Musawir. What does Al-Musawir mean? The One who gives us shape, the one who gives us our figure, the one who gave us the shape we are in, Al-Musawir. Who made the man in his shape, and the animal in its shape? Who made the horse in the shape of a horse, and a camel in the shape of a camel, and the lion and the trees and the stars and the moon, who gave them their shape? Al-Musawir.

Allah say in the Qur’an, “In any surah He desired, He created you.” What makes us so different from each other? Al-Musawir, the one who gave each and every one of us a unique look, a unique image and yet that image is the same when compared to other beings. Amongst men we are all the same, humans, we look similar. Yet, amongst ourselves we are so different, Al-Musawir.

Ponder over this name, and the fact that man in his limited finite capabilities, cannot even think of the shape of another being, much less bring it into existence, much less bring life to it.

Now all of you know these science fiction movies and these books, and you know the films that come out where they try to portray Martians or other beings, right? Have you ever wondered - and even mythology, ancient mythology, the Greeks and the Romans and everything, the Sphinx and all of this - have you ever wondered or noticed, that even in these mythological and alien creatures, there is always a combination of some type of man or some type of being that is known.

So Martians are short or fat human beings, or tall or thin, humanoids. Similarly, these mythological beasts are half men and half lion, half horse and half man. Man cannot even think of a shape of another being, much less bring it about, much less bring life to it.

Al-Musawir is the one who gives shape to life. What a powerful thing. Have you ever pondered over this? Not even an image, can man think of the shape of another being? We cannot even think of a shape, it has to be something we have seen and known. That is how weak and frail we are.

Allah then says, “To Allah belong the most beautiful Names.” The most beautiful names belong to Allah. Allah is characterized by Names of majesty, of perfection, of splendor. There are no names that can be more beautiful than Allah’s Names. “To Him everything in the heavens and earth praise, and He is the Aziz,” The One full of wisdom, the One full of honor.

How many names does Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - have? How many? Ninety-nine, are there any other opinions? Infinite! Infinite is the precise one. This is a common misconception that many Muslims have. And this is a misconception that no scholar or famous scholar of the past held. The average Muslim thinks that Allah has 99 names.

What is the basis of this misconception? The hadith of the Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam. What does the hadith say? “To Allah belong The 99 Names. Whoever memorizes them will enter Jannah.” Now when you read this hadith the first thing that comes to mind is Allah has 99 names, but that is not what the hadith says. The hadith says, to Allah belong 99 names, such that when you have memorized these 99 you will enter Jannah.

Let me re-phrase that in similar way. I have a hundred dollars that I am going to give in charity. Do I have only a hundred dollars? No, well I better not Insha Allah, let us hope not. Similarly, I will send one of my children to tadhdid school. Does that mean I only have one child? Not necessarily, no. Similarly, to Allah belong the 99 such that he who memorizes them will enter Jannah, i.e. Allah has an infinite number of names, but of those names there are 99 which are special, extra special we should say, all of them are special. Whoever memorizes them, acts upon them, ponders over them, that is a person who will enter Jannah.

Let me conclude by quoting you one of the ahadith of the Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam. The hadith is that a man used to recite Surat ul Ikhlaas in each and every rak’ah that he would pray. Each and every rak’ah. He was the imam of the prayer and he would recite qul hu-wallaahu ‘ahad in every rak’ah. His companions complained and said why do you always recite Surat ul Ikhlaas? He said, this is what I want to do, if you do not like it go find somebody else. This is what I am going to do.

He would recite Surat al Fatihah, then he would recite Surat ul Ikhlaas and then he would recite another surah. So he would always recite Surat ul Ikhlaas before reciting another surah.

We also recite Surat ul Ikhlaas most of the time, if you were to ask us why you would say because it is a smaller surah, but that is a different reason.

The people complained to the Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - and they said, oh RasulAllah this man always recites Surat ul Ikhlaas. The Prophet - Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam - said ask him why does he does so. The man said because this surah describes my Lord. It describes my Lord and I love to read His descriptions.

The Prophet Sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam said, inform him that his love for this surah has caused him to enter Jannah. A love of Allah translates as a love of His names and attributes, it is that simple. And to not care about the Names and Attributes of Allah, translates as not loving Allah.

Human nature, my dear brothers and sisters, human nature. When we love something, whatever it might be, we love our parents, we love our spouse, we love our children, we love other things, when we love something we want to find out as much as we can about them. Each and every detail we want to know because we have a love for it. And when we know that love increases.

How much more so for Allah Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? How much more so for Allah Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala? When we claim to love Allah, should we not study His Names and Attributes? Ponder over them, think about them, act upon them?

And that is why Surat ul Ikhlaas is equivalent to one third of the Qur’an, because it summarizes for us who Allah is. One third of the Qur’an in this one surah, why? Because it summarizes who He is.

What is the greatest verse in the Qur’an? The greatest verse, Ayat ul Kursi. Ayat ul Kursi, what is Ayat ul Kursi except Allah’s Names and Attributes. Except Allah’s Names and Attributes. Ayat ul Kursi has over twenty Names and Attributes of Allah. That is why it is the greatest verse.

What is the most, the greatest surah in the Qur’an? The greatest surah, Surat ul Fatihah. Surat ul Fatihah, all it is again is Names and Attributes of Allah. All it is is names and attributes of Allah.

The greatest surah, the greatest ayah, this surah which is one third of the Qur’an, why, why, why? Names and attributes. It is describing Allah.

So going back to the theme of our talk, do not be amongst those who have forgotten Allah, because when you forget Allah you forget yourself. Therefore, be amongst those who know who Allah is, and when you know who Allah is, you know yourself. When you discover Allah, you discover yourself because you understand your purpose in life, you understand your role as the creation.

You are nothing compared to Allah. You are NOTHING compared to Allah. Your purpose in life is to worship Allah, because He is worthy of worship because of who He is. Were Allah not to have created us, none of us, He would still be worthy of worship because of who He is. How much more so when He has created us and given us all that we have? Is He not worthy of worship more because of this?

So I conclude by praying that Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - causes us to love Him, blesses us with a love of Him, and a love of His Names and Attributes and to be amongst those who remember Allah in this world and in the hereafter, so that we can be blessed with the pleasure of looking at Allah - Subhaanahu wa Ta ‘Aala - in the hereafter.
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Old 12-04-2008, 02:59 AM   #2
Ummat Muhammad
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Nairobi,Kenya
Posts: 6
Re: [] The Best Remembrance

Jazakallah, i have printed a copy of this lecture

Last edited by husseinabdulkadir; 12-04-2008 at 03:15 AM.
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