It is customary for Islamic texts to begin with the basmala. It seems only fitting that this blog should do so as well. Here are some brief notes describing the benefits of reciting the basmala.
7 Benefits of Reciting Basmala
- The first benefit of beginning the Qur’an and the Fatiha with the basmala is that it gives guidance to the servants that we initiate all of our affairs, actions, and anything else of consequence in the name of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). This gives us a certain realization of where we come from, where we are going, and how we must get there. Before eating, drinking, slaughtering, going to the masjid, sitting, standing — before we begin anything important in life — we start with the name of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). One of the scholars mentioned that people searched long and far for the philosophers stone (which was supposed to transform base metals into gold) and failed. However, the secret that turns the base into the high and worthwhile is the Basmala which transforms the mere worldly into matters of eternal significance.
- The second benefit of beginning in the name of Allah is to seek blessings, barakah, and assistance from Him (subhana wa ta’ala) for the name points to the one named.
- The third benefit is to express one’s veneration for Allah (subhana wa ta’ala)
- The fourth benefit is to distinguish ourselves from those who worship other than Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) such as the polytheists and those who worshiped material and non-material gods. They began their matters by mentioning their idols.
- The fifth benefit of beginning in the name of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) is that there is a clear indication that the one who has said it has devoted themselves completely to Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). They have true faith and realization in Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) and that they are dependent on Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) and not upon outward means. The sunnah of action is that one takes the means, but places one’s reliance completely upon Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). This inward focus is manifested when one begins with the basmala.
- The sixth benefit of beginning in the name of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) is the affirmation of one’s belief in Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) and a recognition of the blessings of Allah (subhana wa ta’ala). They recognize His Noble Attributes by affirming two of his most noble attributes.
- The seventh benefit is that Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) joins between these two attributes (al-Rahman and al-Raheem) which points to an encompassing of all possible meanings. It illustrates the relationship between Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) and His creation which is based upon mercy and not enmity.
These benefits were taken from the works of Abu Bakr al-Jassas, al-Biqai, Ibn Ashoor, and Shaykh Abdurrahman Habbanikah.
[Old notes from Sunnipath course on the Short Surahs]
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