Reflections on the Meanings of Takbeer - I

Reflections on the Meanings of Takbeer - I
  • Publish date:11/10/2011
  • Section:Highlights
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Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, La ilaaha illallaah, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, wa lillaahil-Hamd

(Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest. There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah. Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest, to Him belongs all praise!)
Takbeer is one of the rituals of ‘Eed in Islam. It is a confirmed act of the Sunnah (Prophetic tradition) to be done on ‘Eed Al-Fitr and ‘Eed Al-Adh-ha, and it is more obvious on ‘Eed Al-Adh-ha because it continues in the first ten days of Thul-Hijjah along with the days of At-Tashreeq (11th, 12th, and 13th of Thul-Hijjah) in which saying Takbeer is prescribed in general, whereas it is prescribed on the day of ‘Arafah and the days of ‘Eed in particular.
Some formulas of Takbeer were authentically reported – most of them are close in structure, so it is preferable to reflect upon one formula to derive some actions that should take place in the heart of the Muslim when uttering this beautiful form of Thikr and glorification of Allah The Almighty.
Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, La ilaaha illallaah, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, wa lillaahil-Hamd
(Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest. There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah. Allah is the Greatest, Allah is the Greatest, to Him belongs all praise!)
Look at these words again and again, and you will find letters of light written with tranquility. They are three consecutive Takbeers like pearls in a necklace chosen from the noblest words and phrases. It is the word of monotheism and dedication followed by another Takbeer celebrating The One True God and by a third Takbeer mingled with gratitude and praise. They trip on the tongue sweeter than honey! When a Muslim sees the letters decorated in such a way, he feels comfortable, happy, and is exhausted no more. He hears a voice that motivates him to work. So, what about the content and meaning with which these letters address the heart? Does this inspire the soul to seek these meanings? Does this require the religious people to ardently strive for the good things and gifts reflected by these phrases?
Below are brief reflections on some of the meanings of Takbeer that Allah The Almighty guided us to know by His favor, wishing they go deep in the hearts to awaken the ones overtaken by somnolence and activate the ones who have fallen prey to lethargy Thus, the heart travels by this Takbeer to Allah The Almighty to obtain its share of love for Him and what He loves and enjoy drawing close to Him.
First reflection
Takbeer signifies worshiping Allah The Almighty by celebrating His Name Al-Kabeer (The Grandest) and the implication of His being Grand. Allah The Almighty loves His being and His perfect Attributes. He loves to be worshiped and mentioned by these Attributes and testify to the fact that their impacts and influences do exist. To do so, Allah The Almighty ordained for His slaves to do all that helps to magnify these sublime attributes and glorify these beautiful Names although He is in no need for that.
Indeed, nobody can praise Allah The Almighty as He should be praised, but He alone can duly praise Himself. It is the mercy of Allah The Almighty to His slaves that He showed them how they could draw close to Him by remembering Him and granted them knowledge whereby they could recognize Him. As a result, Allah The Almighty will bless them, show them mercy, and purify them. Otherwise, they will be like animals, or even worse. The fact that Allah The Almighty is Grand necessitates drawing close to Him by means of this Name, which includes saying Takbeer. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {And glorify Him with [grand] glorification."}[Quran 17:111]
Allah The Almighty is described as being Grand and Superior, and this pertains to the nuances of grandness. So, Takbeer should be a means whereby the slave seeks to understand the Name of Allah Al-Kabeer and realize the impact of this beautiful Name in terms of worshiping Allah, believing in His Oneness, and loving Him.
The Name of Allah The Almighty Al-Kabeer is always associated with His Name Al-‘Aliyy (the Most High) in the Quran. Highness and supremeness necessitate smallness in the perception of human senses. In other words, the higher a thing goes, the smaller it looks. Thus, it is more befitting that Highness of Allah is associated with His Grandness. This denotes that Allah possesses absolute Highness and absolute grandness, and therefore, this negates any possibility of comprehending His being and it cuts off all the means that lead to it. What belongs to Allah The Almighty cannot be measured by the human perception, nor can His unique features be judged by the criteria of their features. He is Al-‘Aliyy (the Most High) in a way that is never subject to physical requirements, and He is Al-Kabeer (the Grandest) whose Grandness does not contradict the perfection of highness.
There is another beautiful point in the association of the two sublime Names, that is, grandness describes beings more frequently than highness. Highness may reflect the loftiness of being, of attributes, or the highness of actions; grandness, however, usually modifies the being. Thus, their association indicates the highness of being in His name Al-‘Aliyy, which is supported and highlighted by the description of grandness. Allah The Almighty possesses absolute Highness of being over all His Creatures by virtue of this association.
Also, ponder on the context of the verses where this honorable Name (Al-Kabeer) is mentioned, and you will find that it occurs in the context of exalting Allah The Almighty above every fault or imperfection committed by people regarding the right of Tawheed and worshiping Him without partner. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {[They will be told], "That is because, when Allah was called upon alone, you disbelieved; but if others were associated with Him, you believed. So the judgment is with Allah, Al-‘Aliyy Al-Kabeer (the Most High and the Grand)."} [Quran 40:12] Allah The Almighty is Al-Kabeer (The Grand), and none is grander than Him. His absolute grandness is evidence that He must be worshipped Alone, which is implied in saying Takbeer. Anything else is more entitled to belittlement or smallness. How does the heart become attached to such small things?
 (To be continued)

Reflections on the Meanings of Takbeer - II

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