15) Al Kabeer
This Name of Allah is mentioned in the Qur’an six times. Allah says:
That is because Allah is the Truth, and that what they call upon other than Him is falsehood, and because Allah is the Most High, the Grand. [Luqman 31: 30]
opposite to something that is small. This meaning has an impact on the shar’ee definition; that Allah is great and mighty.
Al Khatabbi says: Allah is described with greatness and with might. Opposite of small. Greater than the whole creation. The Mighty, the Supreme. Knowledge of Allah being great and supreme, or being mighty over whole of creation, is something Allah wants to instil in the hearts. Ibn Qayyim says: Allah has prescribed the dhikr Allahu akbar, many times in the day. Allah has prescribed for one to say Allahu akbar when he begins His salah, in every movement except when rising from ruku and saying salam, after completing Ramadan and before Eid. It is also prescribed in the adhan and iqāmah, when stoning the jamarāt, when starting the tawāf, when slaughtering animals. In Jihad where the takbir is said it affirms that victory has come because of al-Kabeer, al Akbar. The reason for Allahu Akbar to be prescribed in all these ibadāt is because Allah knows that if the believer can truly understand that Allah is al-Akbar, al-Kabeer – greater and mightier than everything, then He will be successful in the dunya and aakhirah.
Meaning of Allahu Akbar is that you affirm that Allah is greater than every possible need you have, or that you possess or that you would like to possess, every inclination, desire, feeling – Allah is greater than everything. So when the slave is about to start his salah, he says Allahu Akbar. Allah is greater than us using this time for something else, or thinking about something else. Reminding ourselves that Allah is the greatest, adorns our salah with khushoo. Thus the life of the believer will become enveloped in the worship of Allah.
Benefits that we can learn from this Name
1. Having khushoo, being submissive and having full awareness of Allah. We acknowledge that we are worshipping a Lord that deserves to be worshipped. There is nothing like Him. He is great and the greatness of Him cannot even be imagined.
2. Say a lot of takbeer. Revive the sunnah of The Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam by saying a lot of takbeer Allahu Akbar.
Abdullah ibn Umar narrates that a man came late to Salāh. Upon arriving to the line he started his prayer with the following words, Allāhu Akbaru Kabīran wal-hamdulillahi kathīran wa subhān Allahi bukratan wa asīlā. The Prophet, after completing the prayer, asked the people who had said this. The man said, O Rasūlullah, I did not intend by it other than good. The Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam said, I saw the gates of heaven open because of those words. Ibn Umar added, I never ceased saying these words since hearing the Prophet say that. [Muslim]
3. Find happiness with Al-Kabeer. Your original nature makes you seek love and perfection and Allah Al-Kabeer is the source of all perfection; so only by turning to Him can your heart feel peace and happiness. In fact, the more you get to know about Him, His Names and His Attributes, the more you‘ll turn to Him with true love and devotion and the more you‘ll feel secure and peaceful with Him.
4. Magnify Al-Kabeer in the proper way. Allah azza wa jall instructs you:
And Your Lord Glorify [al Muddathir 74:3] Words to magnify Al-Kabeer, like the tahleel (laa ilaaha illAllah) tahmeed (Alhamdulillah), tasbeeh (subhanAllah) and takbeer (Allahu Akbar), have great meanings; ponder their true meanings, increase in saying them and be careful not to misuse them.
5. Never be arrogant. Guard yourself against arrogance (kibr). Never look down on others; you don‘t know the rank they have with Al-Kabeer. Arrogance can also be found in how you deal with the commands of Allah. Look at the sin of Iblees; he refused to bow down due to arrogance. A good tip to keep you away from disobedience to the commands of Allah is that whenever you‘re about to sin, look up and imagine Al-Kabeer watching you would you dare to look up and say no to Him?
6. Call upon Al-Kabeer. Make dua using this Name to ask Him to lead you to deeds pleasing to Him. There is no rank higher or achievement better than attainment of Allah‘s good pleasure. It is as Al-Kabeer says:
Indeed to Us is their return; and then indeed, upon Us is their account. [Al Ghashiyah 88:25-26] Always aim high in your supplications ask al-Kabeer for Jannatul Firdaws, the highest paradise, without reckoning. Nothing is too great for Him to be able to grant.
7. Be proud of your Lord. You shouldn‘t be ashamed of Allah‘s religion or divine commands. If you really believe that Allah is Al-Kabeer, you should be proud of your Lord in all situations, places, and company.
8. Feel your takbeer. What is really akbar in your life? The Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam taught you to say Allahu Akbar at the start and during your whole salah. Whenever you say, or hear, Allahu Akbar in prayer or the adhaan (call to Prayer), know what it really means. Know that Al-Kabeer is far greater than anything that you could ever imagine or think of. When you raise your hands to start your prayer, imagine you‘re throwing the whole world behind you and all is about Allahu Akbar.
Al Kabeer and other Names
Allah mentions al Kabeer with Al-Muta’aal and Al-‘Aliyy. High, above (above the throne). True greatness is when a person looks down. Allah is separate from His creation, high above everything and this highness makes him Kabeer – great. He is outside the creation and above the creation as highness is a sign of greatness. Rasoolullah sallallahu alayhi wassalam said the 7 heavens and the earth compared to the kursi of Allah is like a ring in the desert and the kursi compared to the arsh of Allah is like a ring in the desert. Allah doesn’t need the arsh, the arsh needs Allah.
16) Al Wāhid 17) Al Ahad
These Names are mentioned in both Al-Qur’an and Sunnah. Al Wāhid is mentioned 20 times in the Qur’an. For example Allah says:
The Day they come forth nothing concerning them will be concealed from Allah. To whom belongs [all] sovereignty this Day? To Allah, the One, the Prevailing. [al Ghaafir 40:16]
Al Ahad is mentioned once in the Qur’an. Allah says:
Say; He is Allah who is One [al Ikhlaas 112:1]
They are both similar in meaning. Both are to do with proving how Allah is One.
Comes from the root word ahada – to be one or to be single. There is a slight difference however, between the two Names. Wāhid is used to describe a number and Ahad is often used to negate everything and make it go back to one.
refers to Allah being One in everything. There is only One Allah and One deity worthy of being worshipped. Al Ahad – say He is Allah and there is nothing at all like Him, Allah. Ibn Qayyim says: all His Attributes and Characteristics are ahad and no one can come close to the Characteristics of Allah. He is One in everything, perfect in Him creating, in being above His throne, and everything else of His characteristics. Allah being Al Wāhid and Al Ahad, means He has Wahdaniyyah. Wahdaaniyyah is categorised into the following:
1. He is Wāhid and Ahad in His oneness and characteristics and description of Himself. No one can have any of His characteristics. There is nothing like Him. Al Qurtabi says: Quraysh asked Rasoolullah sallallahu alayhi wassalam to describe Allah so Allah revealed Surah Al Ikhlaas.
2. He is Wāhid in His Ruboobiyah – providing for His creation, and no one can provide like Him. Wāhid – the only One doing it, and Ahad – no one can do it except Allah.
Even the kuffar acknowledge Ruboobiyah, although with deficiency. If one gets granted this knowledge of Allah being One, then they will be granted uluhiyyah, then our ibadah is taken up to Him. Allah has Oneness in His Kingdom. He can do whatever He wants and show authority however He wants. Tawheed al mulkihi – no one has kingdom like Allah. No one will speak except by the permission of Allah as He is the “Master of the day of Judgement.£ Here, the Day of Judgement is specified because on yawmal qiyamah there will be no rule except His, all authority will belong to Him. As for the dunya He has allowed others to have some sort of rule and authority.
3. Fi uluyatihi – in His worship. Allah deserves worship and nothing is like Him. He severely rebukes the Christians and Jews who have taken other deities besides Him. There is no one except Him as an ilaah therefore we should direct all our worship to Him alone.
Al Wāhid and Al Ahad with other Names
Allah mentioned the Name Al-Wāhid with the Name Al-Qahhaar. The meaning of a Name is enhanced when mentioned with another Name. Al-Qahhaar is The Subduer – someone who deserves complete submission. The reason behind coupling these Names, by Him being One and having the sifaat that He has, He is mightier and greater than anything. He deserves full submission because He is One in everything. He deserves submission and worship because He is Wāhid in everything. We are submitting to the one who is Al-Qahhaar. We should worship Him with complete and pure worship with all khushoo’. Al-Ahad is mentioned with As-Samad because He is the only One that doesn’t need anything. As-Samad is the Self Sufficient and the type of self sufficiency He has is One.
Benefits we can learn from these Names
1. Understand and see the greatness of Allah. Direct all our worship to Allah, knowing He is the Lord, and the only One who deserves our worship. The Oneness of Allah is a principle you need to keep reminding yourself of. His Oneness is the core message that all the Prophets, peace be upon them all, were sent with. If you truly understand Al Wāhid, you will worship Him accordingly. Remind yourself He is the Only One able to do everything, so in your daily life, make du’a only to Him, sacrifice only for Him and give sadaqah only for Him. Study tawheed and its meanings and teach this Name to your children and others.
2. Turn to Him first. We know we have to believe in Al-Wāhid alone, but in daily life when difficulty hits us we often turn to other means to try to relieve ourselves. When you have a problem turn to Him, turn to Him first and then to other means to your disposal. When you are ill, don‘t just grab a medicine quickly, but first ask Al-Wāhid to provide you with a cure. When you are hurt, don‘t immediately vent your heartache to a friend, ask Al-Wāhid to mend your heart first. Why turn to anyone else if you can turn to The Sustainer of the Heavens and the Earth?
3. See Al-Wāhid’s proof all around you. The integration of the whole universe is a proof for the Oneness of Allah. The orbit of the sun and the moon, the composition of the air, the Earth, the seas and the planets, the birth of a child, the perfect works of the human body are all proofs that there is only One Creator Who is the source of all of these diverse manifestations of His Unity. So look around you to increase your awe for His Beautiful Oneness. His Shar’iah is the greatest of shar’iah. Surah Naml (27) verse 59-64 talks about how He created the heavens and earth. Is there a diety with Allah? In this verse Allah says He done all of that which was mentioned so how can there be any other God but Him? If one doesn’t worship Allah or doesn’t worship Him in the correct way then these people are to be punished, and this is what is just. That’s why Allah is repeating in the ayah, a ilaahum ma’allah? Is there a diety with Allah?
4. Feel the testimony of faith. Understand the shahada by studying its meaning and implications. Reflect on your relationship with the shahada and how both your limbs and heart should be connected to it. Remind yourself of all those believers who sacrificed all they had by proclaiming the testimony of faith. Think of the wife of Firawn, the People of the Trench, the early Muslims of Makkah and all those men and women who are being pursued just for having faith and feel the power of the
And they resented them not except because they believed in Allah, the Exalted in Might, the Praiseworthy/ [al Burooj, 85:8]
Next time you pray really feel it when you say laa ilaaha illAllah, He is the Only One! Repeat the shahada throughout the day. The Messenger of Allah salallahu alayhi wa sallam said: The best Dhikr (remembering Allah) is La ilaaha illallah and the best supplication is Al-Hamdu Lillah. [At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa‘i and Ibn Majah]
5. Fight your desires. We know Al-Ahad is the Only One but do we make Him the Only One we listen to, work for, ask from and submit to in our daily life? How many times do you do something you think is important rather than what is truly important in the eyes of Al-Ahad? Fight your ego and make pleasing Him your only goal.
Have you seen he who has taken as his god his [own] desire, and Allah has sent him astray due to knowledge and has set a seal upon his hearing and his heart and put over his vision a veil? So who will guide him after Allah? Then will you not be reminded? [al Jaathiya, 45:23]
6. Make your intentions for Him only. Imagine a cup of white, pure milk, if there was one drop of blood or dirt in it, the whole colour would change and you would not drink it. Once you understand the shahada you know your intentions should be for Allah only. Think about the intention you have with every deed. For example if you feel angry when someone doesn‘t acknowledge what you did for them, examine yourself and think, did I do this purely for Allah or was my intention mixed with something else? Start; for one week to make everything you do to please Him only and taste the unique sweetness. When you are working, think you are pleasing Him by taking care of your family, when you are tending the children make the intention you want to raise them to worship Al-Ahad only, when you help someone, help them for the reward of Al-Ahad only.
7. Make surah Al-Ikhlaas your life‘s motto. Apart from reciting it in your prayer, have you ever thought what this virtuous surah means to your daily life? This surah inspires sincerity in all you do and live for the Only, Al-Ahad. He rewards your good deeds according to their sincerity, your sincerity is the key to your eternal success
and without sincerity all your deeds are worthless.
Say, Indeed my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah, Lord of the Worlds. No partner has He, and this I have been commanded and I am the first [among you] of the Muslims. [al An’am, 6:162-163 ] This means not only in worship like prayer and fasting, but you should have the intention to please Al-Ahad in all what you do in your living such as spending money, dealing with your family etc.
8. Ask Al-Ahad. Ask Him, turn to Him and beg Him only for your every need. Ask Him to help you to purify your intentions and to gain ikhlaas in all your actions.