68) Ar Raoof
This Name of Allah appears in the Qu’ran 10 times. For example Allah says:
And thus we have made you a just community that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you. And We did not make the qiblah which you used to face except that We might make evident who would follow the Messenger from who would turn back on his heels. And indeed, it is difficult except for those whom Allah has guided. And never would Allah have caused you to lose your faith. Indeed Allah is, to the people, Kind and Merciful. [al Baqarah 2:143]
Do you not see that Allah has subjected to you whatever is on the earth and the ships which run through the sea by His command? And He restrains the sky from falling upon the earth, unless by His permission. Indeed Allah , to the people, is Kind and Merciful.
[al Hajj 22:65]
From the 10 times the Name Ar Ra’oof is mentioned, 8 of these times Allah mentions it with the Name Ar Raheem. One time it is Raoofun bil ‘ibaad and one time it is Raoof by itself.
Rafa means compassion. It is a greater from of mercy than Rahma. Rafa ash shaddu rahma. The term Ra‘oof means tender affection, the highest mercy and compassion, the upper limit of ar-Raheem. The meaning is similar to Ar-Raheem, but focuses on the utmost tenderness, kindness and affection, which accompanies the outpouring of mercy and compassion.
Linguistically, ra‘fa refers to the tenderness, kindness, and affection with which Allah azza wa jall bestows mercy on us.
Al Qurtabi mentions that when a person is stoned to death or lashed for a sin, this is a rahma for him not a rafa because it still brings him pain and hurt, but its a means for forgiveness. Ra‘fa is that which would not bring with it pain or hardship Ra’fa is a means of attaining forgiveness of Allah, without one feeling any difficulty or hardship. This is why they say ra’fah is greater then rahma.
Ibn Jarir at-Tabbari says: Allah has the greatest form of ra‘fa (compassion), more greater and higher and mightier than rahma. Ra‘fa is a type of mercy and compassion that Allah sends to dunya and saved in the aaikrah for all the people He loves and He compassionately waters them with His mercy, without them being hurt, or upset or disliking anything.
Al-Ghazali mentioned that Ar-Raoof has pity, and that pity is the intensification of mercy. It has the same meaning as Raheem though in a more intense form. Ar-Raoof is the One who bestows pity and mercy on us in many different forms, including warnings and withholding, for us to be guided to success in this world and the next.
Al Khattabi says: it could be that rahma is obtained for a benefit with some hardship. e.g. if someone has the huddod applied to him for any sin committed, even though it will be painful and hard, it is a rahma and the benefit is that they will not be punished in the aakirah for that sin. As for Ra’fa, it can never be obtained through hardship or difficulty.
How can we understand the concept of ra‘fa and the concept of rahma (mercy)? After a calamity hits us, Ar-Raheem has mercy on us. Ra‘fa refers to Allah azza wa jall taking care of us and warning us so that we can protect ourselves from His own punishment. Ar-Raoof says:
The Day every soul will be find what it has done of [present] before it and what it has done of evil, it will wish that between itself and that [evil] was a great distance. And Allah warns you of Himself and Allah is kind to (His) slaves [ale Imran 3:30]
How merciful is this? Ar-Raoof warns us how to avoid His punishment out of pure kindness and affection, by sending us prophets and messengers for advice, by sending us the Quran and guiding our hearts when we turn to Him.
Benefits we can learn from this Name
1. When Allah decreed to change the qiblah from Masjid Al Aqsa to Masjid Al Haraam – Al Ka’bah, the sahabah were worried if all their previous ibaadah would still be counted or not. So they asked Rasoolullah sallalahu alayhi wassalam concerning this and Allah revealed the ayah from al Baqarah which is mentioned above. At the end of it Allah says; And never would Allah have caused you to lose your faith. Indeed Allah is, to the people, Kind and Merciful. So whenever a person does an action for the sake of Allah, trying his best to get closer to Allah, and to follow the sunnah of Rasoolullah, even though he might make some mistakes or fall short in something, but Allah from the Name Ar-Raoof, Allah will accept that action as though it was done perfectly. For example it is better for a person who is travelling to not pray the sunnah of rawatib (except the 2 before fajr as Rasoolullah sallalahu alayhi wassalam didn’t leave these even whilst travelling) even though one may not want to miss it, it is upon them to take the concession Allah has given them as it is a for of mercy in itself. But if you are someone who prays the Sunnah of rawatib regularly,Allah being Ar Raoof, if you will make it count as if you had prayed them. So not only do you get the reward for not praying them whilst travel (as its from the sunnah to leave them during travel) but you also get the reward as if you had prayed them. Another example is of a person who embraced Islam later on in life. All the bad actions that they done before accepting Islam, Allah forgives them, and changes their bad deeds into good deeds, Allahu akbar! Allah says:
And those who do not invoke with Allah another deity or kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed], except by right, and do not commit unlawful sexual intercourse. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty. Multiplied for him is the punishment on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein humiliated – Except for those who repent, believe and do righteous work. For them Allah will replace their evil deeds with good. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful. [al Furqaan 25: 68-70]
SubhanaAllah, if you see in the aforementioned ayat, Allah states three grave sins of shirk, murder and zina but says that He will accept the repentance of the one who repents from these sins and would change their evil deeds into good. Then what about for one who repents from sins that do not reach the level of shirk? Allah is truly Ar-Raoof to His slaves.
2. Every command has a reward attached to it. Every bad deed a person commits, and hasn’t made tawbah for and commits them without having any regret then he will lose the corresponding reward Allah has prepared for that bad deed. For example Allah has prohibited alcohol so for the one who stays away from it, Allah will give him a river of wine. The one who drinks it without regret, this person will lose out of this reward and will also be punished with the drinks of hellfire such as boiling water and oil. In Surah An Nur Allah begins by speaking about zina, then adultery, then He mentions the commandment of lowering the gaze and directly after that He says Allahu noorus-samaawaati wal ardh – Allah is the light of the heavens and the earth. Ibn Qayyim says; the reward on yawmal qiyyamah for those who lowered their gazes, is that after Allah has thrown the munafiqeen in the hellfire, He will bring those who used to lower their gazes and tell them to raise their gaze, and they will lift their gaze and see the face of Allah. This is reward of the one who lowers their gaze. One who gazes on that which is unlawful, will lose out the reward of the one who lowers their gaze.
3. Allah from His Name being Ar Raoof, He has sent down the Qur’an and He has taken people out of darkness into the light of Islam. Allah says:
It is He who sends down upon His Servant [Muhammad] verses of clear evidence that He may bring you out from darknesses into the light. And indeed, Allah is to you Kind and Merciful. [al Hadeed 57: 9]
This is from the greatest compassion and greatest mercy that Allah has given us. Ask Allah to make your heart tender to His reminder, the Qur’an.
4. Embody the characteristic of rafa yourself. Allah being Ar Raoof forgives sins, He is compassionate to the believers. We should also learn about the compassion of Rasoolullah sallalahu alayhi wassalam and we should embody this characteristic of rafa in ourselves and show compassion to others. Ar-Raoof described the Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam as ra‘oofun raheem:
There has certainly come to you a Messenger from among yourselves. Grievous to him is what you suffer; [he is] concerned over you and to the believers is kind and merciful. [at Tawbah, 9:128]
Study the s eerah to learn how the prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam dealt with His companions, family, and even his enemies.
5. Increase your heart in mercy. Be kind to others and handle people‘s feelings with tenderness. Sometimes you are so busy with your own life and your own family and friends that you forget about others. The connection you feel with the Muslim ummah is a mirror for your emaan. Read about the situation of your fellow brothers and sisters around the world and think of ways of how to support them. For example make sure you remember the ummah in your dua.
6. Be proactive. Someone once said: All that time I was waiting for someone to do something about it. Then I realised that someone was me. Ar-Raoof has pity on us and He even warns us on how to avoid His punishment. If you see your brother or sister low in emaan or even going astray, feel concerned for them and advise them with kindness and care. Forbidding evil and enjoining good is a duty upon you; how seriously do you take it?
You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is evil and believe in Allah. If only the people of the scripture had believed, it would have been better for them. Among them are believers but most of them are defiantly disobedient. [ale Imran 3:110] Be inspired by the ra‘fa of Allah azza wa jall to help warn and guide others as much as you can.
7. Allah is Raoof throughout all times. Reflect on His ra‘fa and rahman. He is compassionate to His slaves on all occasions, in all moments. This shows the believers that throughout the whole time that Allah has allowed him to continue living, know that Allah is the One who is compassionate, despite falling back into sin over and over again, Allah is still Ar Raoof, and He has Ra‘fa that is greater than His Rahma.
8. Ask Ar-Raoof. Ar-Raoof mentions a beautiful supplication in the Qur’an, using this Name:
And [there is a share for] those who came after them, saying, Our Lord, forgive us and our brothers who preceded us in faith and put not in our hearts [any] resentment toward those who have believed. Our Lord, indeed You are Kind and Merciful. [al Hashr 59:10]
68) Al Wadood
This Name of Allah appears in the Qu’ran twice. Allah says:
And ask forgiveness of your Lord and then repent to Him. Indeed, my Lord is Merciful and Affectionate.[Hud 11:90]
Allah also says:
And He is the Forgiving, the Affectionate, [al Buruj 85:14]
It consist of 2 meanings
1) Al Habb – to love
2) Tamana – to hope/yearn for, wishful thinking
Ibn Jarir at Tabbari says; He is the One that possesses love, for the one that turns to Him, He loves Him a great love, a pure, perfect love.
The concept of love in the Arabic language is described by different words, hubb and wudd are examples of them. Hubb is the inner-feeling of love for someone, whereas Wudd is an intense, consistent affection as it is expressed in actions and conduct.
Wadood is from the fa‘ool pattern which in Arabic grammar points to intensity and continuity. Allah is Al-Wadood; His love is intense, continuous and translates into the blessings, favours, mercy, guidance and forgiveness He gives to His slaves.
Ibn Qayyim says Allah being Al-Wadood is of 2 types.
1) He is the One who loves and shows the siffat of love.
2) He is the One who is Loved – Mahboob.
Imam Sa’di says: He is the One that loves His ambiya and loves those that came after them, He loves them a great love, He also loves the pious. Allah also fills the hearts with the love of Him until He makes people love Him, makes the tongues praise Him and makes the actions worship Him. He loves those that love Him. The hope of Allah wanting to see the righteous slaves of Allah, is professed in the Name Al Wadood. Allah doesn’t want to punish us, He has written for Himself rahma, He has opened the doors of rahma, He has a number of Names that are associated with rahma. The reason why He does this is so that He can give us the reward that He has prepared. He hopes to gives us Jannah, He hopes to give us an eternal life of bliss, He hopes to give us palaces under which rivers flow. He wants to meet His righteous slave, He wants to meet ahlul Jannah. Why does Allah say Al-Ghafoor Al-Wadood? Sometimes a person may forgive someone he dislikes but there is nothing like Allah when He forgives, He Loves you as if you had not committed the sin.
Benefits we can learn from this Name
1. To have muhabba of Allah instilled in our hearts, a love that is haqeeqi/real a love that is embodied in wanting to worship Allah. When a person loves Allah, how can this be tested? See how close He is to the by doing the actions that Allah loves and staying away from the actions Allah hates. Narrated Anas bin Malik (RadhiAllahu ‘anhu), The Prophet sallalahu alayhi wassalam said: “Whoever possesses the following three qualities will taste the sweetness of faith: The one to whom Allah and His Apostle become dearer than anything else, The one who loves a person and he loves him only for Allah’s sake. The one who hates to revert to disbelief (Atheism) after Allah has brought (saved) him out from it, as he hates to be thrown in fire.” [Al Bukhari]
Love Al-Wadood above everything and anyone. Al-Wadood says:
Say, [O Muhammad], If your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your relatives, wealth which you have obtained, commerce wherein you fear decline, and dwellings with which you are pleased are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger and jihad in His cause, then wait until Allah executes His command. And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people. [at Tawbah 9:24] This ayah is a great reminder pinpointing all the things we tend to love over Allah and His messenger and in how doing so, can leave us open to the punishment and wrath of Allah. We seek refuge in Allah from that.
2. We have extremely strong hope in the mercy of Allah. If Allah describes Himself as somebody that has a hope to see us and save us from hellfire and to give us Jannah, then we are talking about a Lord that is filled with mercy, a Lord that is compassionate, a Lord that takes care of His slaves. This gives us really strong hope and a mighty thought. Believers should have husn al dhann – good thought/thinking of Allah.
3. Our hearts are filled with tranquillity in remembering a Lord who possesses the siffat of Love. He loves those who worship Him. Let everyone have an action, that no one knows about except you and Allah. This type of action will be done with pure sincerity, purely for the love of Allah and there will be no room for riyaa.
4. Knowing that the sunnah is something that makes Allah love us. Follow Prophet salallahu ‗alayhi wa sallam. Prove your love for Al-Wadood by sticking to the sunnah of His messenger. The reward: Allah will love and forgive you your sins.
Say: If you love Allah then follow me. Allah will love you and forgive you of your sins. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. [ale Imran 3:31]
How do we get closer to Allah and attain His love? Allah says in a Hadith Qudsi: ―Whosoever shows enmity to someone devoted to Me, I shall be at war with him. My servant draws not near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the religious duties I have enjoined upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that I shall love him. When I love him I am his hearing with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, his hand with which he strikes and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask [something] of Me, I would surely give it to him, and were he to ask Me for refuge, I would surely grant him it. I do not hesitate about anything as much as I hesitate about [seizing] the soul of My faithful servant: he hates death and I hate hurting him. [al-Bukhari].
Allah mentions many actions and qualities in the Qur’an which He loves. For example Allah says:
And how many a prophet [fought and] with him fought many religious scholars. But they never lost assurance due to what afflicted them in the cause of Allah, nor did they weaken or submit. And Allah loves the steadfast [ale Imran 3:146]
But yes, whoever fulfils his commitment and fears Allah – then indeed, Allah loves those who fear Him. [ale Imran 3:76]
And spend in the way of Allah and do not throw [yourselves] with your [own] hands into destruction [by refraining]. And do good; indeed, Allah loves the doers of good.
[al Baqara 2:195]
Do not stand [for prayer] within it – ever. A mosque founded on righteousness from the first day is more worthy for you to stand in. Within it are men who love to purify themselves; and Allah loves those who purify themselves . [at Tawbah 9:108] There are also some actions and qualities mentioned in ahadith. For example Rasoolullah sallalahu alayhi wassalam said; Allah loves kindness in all matters. [Bukhaari] And: Allah loves the believer who is pious and rich, but does not show off. [Muslim] If we want to be loved by Allah, then we should be of those who do these actions and have these qualities which Allah loves. How to attain the love of Allah? (Ibn Qayyim) 1) Recitation of Qur’an with contemplation and understanding the meaning that Allah has intended. 2) nawafil actions after the compulsory actions. 3) Adhkaar – remembering Allah in every situation, with the tongue, heart, action and mind.
5. Let your love be for the sake of Al-Wadood. Ask yourself for what reasons do you love people? Love people for the sake of Allah subhanahu wa ta‘ala so Al-Wadood, His angels and the people of the earth love you! What an amazing deal. The Prophet sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said,
When Allah loves a slave, calls out Jibril and says: `I love so-and-so; so love him‘. Then Jibril loves him. After that he (Jibril) announces to the inhabitants of heavens that Allah loves so-and-so; so love him; and the inhabitants of the heavens (the angels) also love him and then make people on earth love him. [Al-Bukhari, Muslim] So mind who you love and love those who fear Allah, love Him and who strive for the good and forbid evil. This is the most beautiful kind of love you can have for another human being, even if you don‘t know them.
69) Al Barr
This Name of Allah appears in the Qu’ran once in regards to being the Name of Allah, however, Allah talks about birr from a characteristic perspective many times. Allah says:
Indeed, we used to supplicate Him before. Indeed, it is He who is the Beneficent, the Merciful.” [at Tur 52:28]
Can mean; truthfulness, to make something good, ‘afuw, or lutf, same meaning as lateef, to be dutiful, carry out the rights for example birrul walidayn – goodness/dutiful to parents. Al Birr entails all acts of righteousness and good conduct. [Ibn Hajar al Haytami]
Ibn Jarir at-Tabbari says: Al Barr means the One who is Lateef to His slaves, the One who helps His slaves, without them knowing who is helping them. Az Zujaji says: Allah is the One who perfects the way for His slaves, and He corrects their affairs and He guides them to the right way. Al Khattabi says: He is the One who is Lateef to His slaves, He perfects for them their ways, and He corrects for them all their affairs. This Name has a similar meaning to Al Lateef and Ar Rauf. Al Barr has all these meanings. Kind, gentle, compassionate, merciful, source of all goodness and kindness Al-Barr is the source of all righteousness, the One from whom every good deed comes. Al-al Qurtabi says: Barr is the One who does not stop His ihsaan because of the sins and disobedience of His slaves.
Ar Raazi says: He is the One who is kind to the wrongdoers, pardons transgression, forgives the sinner, turns to the one who repents to Him, accepts the plea of those who ask Him. He has turned to His slaves with praiseworthy actions and good expectations, while He is the most deserving of them.
Al-Birr versus al-‘ithm
In the sunnah we find a beautiful explanation of what al-birr is and it‘s opposite: al-ithm.
A man came asking the Messenger of Allah salallahu ‗alayhi wa sallam about righteousness and sin. So the Prophet said: Righteousness (al-birr) is good behaviour, and sin (al-ithm) is what fluctuates in your chest, and you would hate that the people discovered it about you [At-Tirmidhi]
From the siffat of the Barr of Allah and the ways we can see this siffat of Allah, is looking at all the benefits which are apparent and the benefits which are hidden as Allah is taking care of all the affairs. He is compassionate towards everything and everyone and from His mercy He is correcting the problems of all His slaves.
Benefits we can learn from this Name;
All the benefits we learn from the Names Ar Raheem, Ar Rauf and Al Lateef are also applicable to the Name Al Barr.
1. Love Allah and reflect on the blessings He has given us. Love Allah. Allah deserves love that is real, for He is the One that is looking after all of our affairs, correcting our problems and our hardships. He is also showing us lutf, ra’fa and rahma. Allah is Al Barr to His slaves, being Lateef to them, He is correcting them, subtly taking care of all their affairs. of dunya and aakirah and those that are apparent and those that are concealed. Ibn Qayyim says: Allah is Al Barr in the dunya, He takes care of the well being, the strength, the money, the property, the children, He helps them, He takes them out of their problems.
And He gave you from all you asked of Him. And if you should count the favour of Allah, you could not enumerate them. Indeed mankind is [generally] most unjust and ungrateful. [al Ibraheem 14:34]
Everything we have in dunya is from Allah being Al-Barr. He is the one taking care of us. As for the deen, Allah through His Name Al-Barr has granted us, as Mumineen eeman – belief in Him and the tawfeeq to carry out the actions of obedience. From the Name of Al-Barr, Allah being kind and gentle, He rewards us and multiplies our deeds and rewards. Treat your parents and children well. Ibn Umar said: Allah has called them the dutiful‘ (al-Abrar) because they are dutiful (birr) to their parents and children. Just as you have a duty which you owe your parent, so you have a duty which you owe your child. [Al-Bukhari] Make an effort to be a good child to your parents and a good parent to your child.
2. Don‘t be hasty.
On the day of `Arafat, the Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam heard a great hue and cry and the beating of camels behind him. So he beckoned to the people with his lash, O people! Be quiet. Hastening is not a sign of righteousness. [Al-Bukhari]
Try to do your daily life activities in a modest manner, for example don‘t walk loudly and hasty on the street in a way you are causing others inconvenience!
3. Ask Al-Barr to guide you to al-birr. A supplication of the sunnah asking for al-birr, is the dua for travelling; make sure you apply it each time you travel!
4. Strive for goodness. Allah being Al Barr, He loves Birr – goodness. Allah says:
Righteousness is not that you turn your faces toward the east or the west, but [true] righteousness is [in] one who believes in Allah , the Last Day, the angels, the Book, and the prophets and gives wealth, in spite of love for it, to relatives, orphans, the needy, the traveler, those who ask [for help], and for freeing slaves; [and who] establishes prayer and gives zakah; [those who] fulfill their promise when they promise; and [those who] are patient in poverty and hardship and during battle. Those are the ones who have been true, and it is those who are the righteous. [al Baqarah 2:177] In the above mentioned ayah, Allah defines what Birr is. It is to:
· Take care of your emaan. The first thing mentioned in the ayah is to have faith and believe in Allah Al-Barr, in the Day He will recompense you according to your good and bad deeds and in the Angels He sends of which some to write down your actions of righteousness and sin. Al-Barr revealed His message to mankind through His books and the prophets, in order to guide you on the path of al-Birr Make sure you study the arkaan ul emaan (the pillars of faith).
· Spend on charity. Straight after emaan Al-Birr mentions spending your money on family and those in need for it. Money sometimes gets dearer to us than anything else, Al-Barr reminds you that spending in His cause is the way to gain al-birr.
· Purify yourself through prayer and zakah. Let your prayer purify you spiritually by learning the meanings of what you say and concentrating on your salah, taking every moment to ask Al-Barr for goodness and righteousness. Give zakah to purify your wealth.
· Keep your promises and speak and act upon the truth. Keep your promises, no matter how big or small, even if it‘s a promise to your sibling to help with homework or promising a sweet to your child. The prophet sallallahu ‗alayhi wa sallam also said:
Truthfulness leads to Al-Birr and Al-Birr leads to Paradise. And a man keeps on telling the truth until he becomes a Siddiq (truthful person). Falsehood leads to Al-Fujur (i.e., wickedness, evil-doing, etc.), and Al-Fujur leads to the (Hell) Fire, and a man keeps on telling lies till he is written as a liar before Allah [Bukhari] Don‘t accept any lies from yourself, not even ―white lies‖ or lying while joking.
· Have sabr. The last thing mentioned in the ayah is to have patiece . Practising patience in hard times is your best training to cultivate al-birr. Next time you go through a test, tell yourself: it‘s all part of a bigger plan. Your vehicle is sabr, on the road of al-birr, leading you to Jannah in shaa Allah.
Ibn Qayyim says on taking from the siffat of Allah’s Name: Allah loves birr. He is the One being Haakim, Al Haakimeen, Al Qaadir – He defines what is good and what is evil. He is the Creator, and He knows exactly what He created and He has taught us what is birr.
70) Al Haleem
This Name of Allah appears in the Qur’an 11 times. For example Allah says:
Allah does not impose blame upon you for what is unintentional in your oaths, but He imposes blame upon you for what your hearts have earned. And Allah is Forgiving and Forbearing. [al Baqarah 2:225]
Allah also says:
Indeed, those of you who turned back on the day the two armies met, it was Satan who caused them to slip because of some [blame] they had earned. But Allah has already forgiven them. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Forbearing. [ale Imran 3:155]
The first meaning is to be forbearing, lenient, tolerant. The second meaning is to be calm and serene and the third meaning is to not be hasty and to exhibit moderation.
Ibn Jarir at Tabbari says: Haleem means the One who has patience, the One who is forbearing, the One who is lenient. He doesn’t punish His slaves immediately after committing a sin. Al Khattabi says: Al Haleem is the One who delays and postpones His anger for a deed that is deserving of punishment.
Al Ghazali says: Al Haleem observes disobedience to Him, yet anger does not incite Him, nor does wrath seize Him, nor does haste and recklessness move Him to rush to take vengeance even though He is utterly capable of doing so. Imam S’adi says: The reason as to why we don’t find the punishment of Allah happening directly after a person commits a sin is because Allah through the Name Haleem, He grants the sinner, the transgressor a time to repent and He grants him the opportunity to turn back to Allah. He delays his anger and punishment until He decides on a time, not to delay it any longer. Ibn Qayyim says: that Haleem is the Name of Allah, and from the characteristic we find sabr. When a person disobeys Him or angers Him, He is patient. He allows him the time to repent.
Al-Haleem Himself says:
And if Allah were to punish people for what they have earned, He would not leave upon the earth any creature. But He gives them respite for a specified term. [al Faatir 35:45]
Al-Haleem can delay a punishment to give you time to return to Him, seek His forgiveness, and change your ways, because He is forbearing. He can even cancel your punishment altogether.
Benefits we can learn from this Name
1. Be grateful for the forbearance of Allah. Allah grants us as Muslims a life after sin. Rasooluallah sallalahu alahyi wassalam said:
Indeed all the children of Adam sin, and the best of those are those who turn back to Allah. [at Tirmidhi]
Through the Name Al Haleem He has given us this time of respite. Ibn Qayyim says this is a benefit we can all take from this Name of Allah. If we live by this Name, whenever someone transgresses us or takes away our rights, we shouldn’t retaliate with anger. We should be tolerant and forbearing. Be forbearing to others: contemplate and practice. The Prophet salallahu ‗alayhi wa sallam said to Ashajj ‗Abdu‘l-Qays: You have two qualities which Allah loves: forbearance and steadiness. [Muslim]
2. Don‘t take advantage of the hilm of Allah. Al-Haleem says to the people who inherited a garden but didn‘t let the poor benefit from it:
Such is the punishment [of this world]. And the punishment of the Hereafter is greater, if they only knew. [al Qalam 68:33] This punishment was a wake-up call for them and a mercy, because they realised their mistake. If Allah had allowed them to do as they wanted, their punishment in the Hereafter would be unforeseen. So know that Al-Haleem has set rules out for you and never take advantage of His forbearance. Therefore it is a Name of hope; that Allah time after time, allows us to turn back to Him. but is is also Name of fear, the fear that the punishment will come to pass if we don’t repent and turn back to Him. Angels write down our good deeds immediately after its done, but the angel on the left shoulder who records the bad deeds waits for a time before writing the bad deeds. Rasoolullah salallahu alayhi wassalam said: The angel on the left does not write down anything until six hours have passed after a Muslim does a bad deed. If he regrets it and asks Allah for forgiveness, he casts it aside [does not write it down], otherwise he writes down one (sayyiah/bad deed). [al-Tabaraani]
3. Show a good example to a sinful person. Never be arrogant to a sinning person and try to advise him gently and by showing a good example. Think to yourself: such a sinful person may, one day, turn to Al-Haleem with sincere repentance and become better and dearer to Allah than I am.
4. Be grateful for the hilm of Allah. Just like you would be grateful to anyone who overlooks your faults and mistakes, recognise the extreme and intense forbearance of Al-Haleem towards you and return to Him after you sin. And as a way of being thankful to al-Haleem for His forbearance, remember to train yourself to be forbearing.
5. Make dua for hilm. Make dua to Al-Haleem, asking Him for His forbearance for yourself and your loved ones. And ask Him to forgive you, because only He can protect you from His justified anger.
6. Allah deserves love. This is yet another Name of Allah that shows His mercy. He has given us an opportunity to turn back to Him after sinning. Everyday we have another opportunity to repent and turn back to Allah. Love Allah for this forbearance He shows you. And hasten to repent to Him everyday for all your sins, big or small.
Al Haleem and other Names
· Al Haleem Comes with the Name Al Aleem – by Allah being Al Aleem He knows who has done what and knows who to be forbearing and tolerant to. He knows who has sinned, so knows who deserves the anger, but through the Name Al Haleem, He postpones that anger.
· Al Haleem also comes with the Name Al Ghafoor because He has allowed a sinner to ask for forgiveness and Al Ghafoor is the One who conceals and covers sins.
· Allah also mentions Al Haleem with Al Shakoor. How many of us are thankful to Allah? Ibn Qayyim says: from the best ways of thanking Allah is to thank Him from the heart, the tongue and the limbs. Affirm it in our heart, say it in du’a and show it in our limbs. We should be thankful to Allah for showing us forbearance and allowing us a grace period where we can turn back to Him. Imagine what state we would be in if Allah had punished us immediately for all the sins we commit. Be shy of this hilm Allah shows, and refrain from sinning.