‘Allahu Akbar’- Do we really mean it?

Image Courtesy www.islamicrenaissance.com

 

We hear the phrase “Allahu Akbar” being used and misused daily. Some use it to declare the Glory and Enormity of Allah (swt), while some misuse it to legitimize their own personal animosity towards certain people.

When we use certain phrases much frequently, such as, Allahu Akbar, Subhan’Allah, Alhumdulillah, and Masha’Allah, we lose the true essence of these phrases, and use them as a sheer habit.

 

When we say “Subhan’Allah”, it means we are declaring His Exaltation and His Glory. When we say “Alhumdulillah”, it means we praise Him for all the blessings He has bestowed up on us. These phrases are much more than a set of words. They are a part of our faith in Allah (swt). Similarly, Allahu Akbar is much more than just two words. Even if a whole book is written on these two words, it would not do justice to what they truly contain.

 

Allahu Akbar – Social Media is a liar!

Social Media is full of negative content that shows the world that “Allahu Akbar” is used mostly when people of sick and twisted minds kill others

. Muslims who are true in faith say Allahu Akbar when they are startled by His miracles up on the earth; when they are frightened by disasters and calling for His help; when they are scared and weak; when they are joyful and at their peak; when they announce their love and trust in Him.

 

Who is the Master of the miraculous galaxies- Allahu Akbar

Allahu Akbar means Allah is the Greatest. Earth is approximately 85,345,714,285,714,286 times bigger than an adult human being. Earth’s sun is so large that 1,300,000 planet earths could fit inside the sun. The star Eta Carinae is over 5,000,000 (five million) times larger than our sun. Star Betelgueuse is 300 times larger than star Eta Crinae.  VY Canismajoris is a billion times larger than our sun.

The galaxy we live in is called “Milky Way”. It has all these stars and planets within our solar system. There are 300 billion suns within our own galaxy.

If we can travel at a speed of 300,000 km/sec, it would take us 100,000 years to reach the end of our galaxy. This is not all.

 

We have a neighbour galaxy which is called “Andromeda”. It is twice in size compared to our galaxy. There is another galaxy called M81, which is 60 times bigger than our galaxy, whereas galaxy IC01011 is 600 times bigger than our galaxy. Remember, that each galaxy has billions of suns million times bigger than our sun, which is 1,300,000 times bigger than our earth, which is 85,345,714,285,714,286 times bigger than a human being. But this is not all; the way stars and planets make galaxies, similarly galaxies make clusters. We live in “Virgo” cluster which has more than fifty four 54 galaxies. Clusters together make “super clusters”.  Our super cluster is known as “Local Group Galaxy Cluster”, which has 100 clusters in it approximately. The number of super clusters in the “observable universe” is estimated to be 10 million. The diameter of observable universe is 93 billion light years. One light year equals to 10 trillion kilometers. This is only what is observable to us. This is the Creation of The One, The Only, Allah (swt).

 

The Power of His Right Hand

Allah says, “They made not a just estimate of Allah such as is due to Him. And on the Day of Resurrection the whole of the earth will be grasped by His Hand and the heavens will be rolled up in His Right Hand. Glorified is He, and High is He above all that they associate as partners with Him!.” (Az-Zumar 39:67)

Recall what is explained above, and imagine it in Allah’s (swt) right hand. This is the meaning of Allahu Akbar – Allah is the Greatest! How can we be arrogant? We have no control over anything. He has all the Power and Control over everything. Allahu Akbar – Allah (swt) is the Greatest! This is just a small fraction of Allah’s (swt) Might. This is what our weak minds can collect and imagine. Allahu Akbar – Allah is the Greatest! Whenever we say Allahu Akbar, we must understand what it truly means; and once we comprehend, we must fall in prostration immediately.

 

[Hadeeth Commentary] Charitable Acts

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Abu Dhar reported that some of the companions of the Messenger (sa) said to him:

 “O Messenger of Allah (swt), the rich have taken away all the rewards. They observe the prayer as we do, and they keep the fasts as we do, and they give Sadaqah (charity) from their surplus riches.” Upon this he (the Prophet (sa)) said: “Has Allah (swt) not prescribed for you (a course) by following which you can also do Sadaqah? Verily in every Tasbih (i.e., saying Subhan’Allah) there is a Sadaqah, every Takbir (i.e. saying Allahu Akbar) is a Sadaqah, every Tahmid (i.e., saying Alhamdulillah) is a Sadaqah, every Tahlil (i.e. saying La ilaha illa Allah) is a Sadaqah, enjoining of good is a Sadaqah, forbidding of evil is a Sadaqah, and having sexual intercourse with your wife is a Sadaqah.” They (the Companions) said: “O Messenger of Allah (swt), is there reward for him who satisfies his sexual passion among us?” He said: “Tell me, if he were to devote it to something forbidden, would it not be a sin on his part? Similarly, if he were to devote it to something lawful, he should have a reward.” (Muslim)

In particular this Hadeeth addresses the fact that the Sahabah were always concerned about the Hereafter and how to compete in seeking Allah’s (swt) reward. The background tells us that the questioners were poor Muslims who understood that their prayer and fasts were equal to that of the richer Muslims. They did not envy them for their wealth, but were only troubled about how to compete when giving in charity (Sadaqah). The companions were sad because they were not able to donate money for charity like other people. Our lesson from this situation is to note that only the thought of not being able to compete in good deeds for Allah’s (swt) sake was what troubled the Sahabah the most, they were not least bothered with what others had – their anxiety stemmed from not being able to please Allah (swt) as much as others could. Subhan’Allah.

In the 40 Hadeeth of An-Nawawi, Ibn Rajab states that the Islamic concept of charity in its broad sense can be divided into two types:

  1. The acts of goodness and kindness one can have towards other humans. Ibn Rajab gave some examples, such as educating and teaching people like teaching the Quran, removing anything that harms people in their paths, and contributing to the well-being of the Muslim community. This also includes doing Dua (prayer) and Istighfar (forgiveness) for other Muslims.
  2. Keeping any harmful action away from others. This means that we must not perform any harmful act towards other people if it does not benefit them. It is the minimum thing that one can afford to benefit others.

The Prophet (sa) then assured his companions, and offered them an alternate explanation of ‘Sadaqah’. A broader concept than the one we usually limit it to – we only take it as monetary in nature.

How does Dhikr benefit you?

When you say ‘Subhan’Allah’ you are granted a tree in Paradise. When you remember Allah (swt) by saying ‘Subhan’Allah’ or ‘Allahu Akbar’ you are actually being good to yourself and Allah (swt) will give you the reward in the Hereafter.

  • Allah (swt) remembers you
  • Allah (swt) will remember your name
  • Allah (swt) will praise you.

hadeeth1Every time you receive a blessing and you say ‘Alhamdulillah”, Allah (swt) will give you a reward. When amazed or in a problem, say ‘Subhan’Allah’ and say Allahu Akbar‘, when you notice yourself feeling proud, this will train you to stay humble and remain a servant of Allah (swt). Finally, our entire lives are based on La ilaha illa Allah. Muslims should make it a habit to do Dhikr during the morning and evening and after every prayer as a minimum. How many times do the rich give monetary Sadaqah? They cannot do so every moment of their life. Allah (swt) has favoured His servants with something that can earn rewards every waking moment. When you say ‘Alhamdulillah’, you get richer. Don’t compare yourself to what other people do, how much do they pray or fast; Allah (swt) has a way for everyone to compete equally. Focus only on what you can do. We know for a fact from this and the other Hadeeth that the ways of pleasing Allah (swt) are numerous and affordable for everyone. People differ in their ability, preference, and potential; therefore a Muslim should take this advantage and do such good deeds that are more convenient and suitable for him or her. People have choices and preferences in doing acts of Ibadah according to their ability and this is acceptable in Islam. Only a few people may have the ability to do many things together. (An-Nawawi)

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If you know of something good, and you want to share it with others, you must make sure you fulfill the conditions. You desire Paradise for others the same way you desire and strive for it yourself – but make sure you do not cause a greater harm than is already present. For example something may not actually be Munkar but in your culture it is considered that way. It has to be Munkar in the Shariah  and not just what your mother or father said. Speak with proof. It is a greater sin to term something as Haram when it is not actually Haram. If you call something Halal when actually it is Haram it is a lesser sin. Everything is Halal except what Allah (swt) has deemed as Haram. The etiquette is not to say something is Haram unless you are certain.

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Acquiring knowledge and spreading it is one of the greatest Sadaqah, this leads to the ability of enjoining good and forbidding evil. Every moment we spend in learning is never wasted. Every normal activity that we do as part of our daily routine will be rewarded for doing it with a good intention. For example, if we leave home for work with an intention to benefit our co-workers and treat it as an opportunity for Dawah; Allah (swt) will reward us for this and it would become Sadaqah.

Finally, the end of the Hadeeth states that fulfilling the desire in a Halal way is Sadaqah. Fulfilling your desires is a right upon yourself and you are doing well when fulfilling the desire of your spouse. No one can say we are deprived – a deprived person is one who deprives himself from the good. Allah (swt) has made it easy for us to earn rewards and practice charity, no matter how rich or poor we are. Alhamdulillah.