Honorific titles with the name of Allah

Questions & Answers

Honorific titles with the name of Allah

  • masjidmuhammad
  • Feb 01, 2021


When the name of Allāh ta‛ālā is taken, is it essential or desirable to mention His honorific titles such as tabāraka wa ta‛ālā, sub-hānahu wa ta‛ālā and so on?


Bismihi Ta’ala

In the light of the statements of the jurists it is learnt that when the name of Allāh ta‛ālā is taken, it is desirable for the speaker to mention His honorific titles, and obligatory for the one who hears His name taken. The honorific title is not confined to any particular one; any title which demonstrates His greatness can be used. For example, sub-hānahu wa ta‛ālā, tabāraka wa ta‛ālā, ‛azza wa jalla, jalla jalāluhu, jalla sha’nuhu, jalla jalāluhu wa ‛amma nawāluhu and so on.
Fatāwā Hindīyyah

However, the statement of the jurists that it is wājib on the one who hears Allāh’s name to say an honorific title needs to be reviewed. Shaykh Abū Sa‛īd Muhammad ibn Mustafā al-Muftī al-Khādimī clearly states that the view that it is wājib is objectionable. He says:

The following could be reasons why the view of obligation is objectionable:

1. None of the texts contain any warnings for leaving out honorific titles especially so when the presence of warnings for such matters are indications of the ruling of obligation. For example, strict warnings have been issued against the one who hears the name of Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‛alayhi wa sallam and does not send salutations to him.

…Jibra’īl ‛alayhis salām said: “May he be deprived of mercy who does not send salutations to you when you are mentioned.” I said: “Āmīn.”

‛Allāmah Ibn Nujaym Misrī rahimahullāh writes:

2. A clear instruction on the manner of honouring Allāh’s name is present in those texts wherein honouring Allāh’s name is intended. However, there is no clear instruction on how to honour His name after hearing it.
For example, it is disrespectful to enter a toilet while wearing a ring on which Allāh’s name is written. This is because Rasūlullāh’s practice of removing his ring on such an occasion is a clear ruling for us. The following narration is to be found in Abū Dāwūd Sharīf:

Anas radiyallāhu ‛anhu narrates: Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‛alayhi wa sallam used to remove his ring before entering the toilet.
The second example is that when taking an oath, a person must bear in mind the sanctity of Allāh’s name. Thus, the texts clearly instruct us to fulfil the oath so that disrespect is not shown to Allāh’s name.2
If honorific titles for Allāh ta‛ālā were wājib, a clear and explicit ruling would have been found, but we observe the contrary.
3. If the adding and saying of honorific titles were wājib, there would have been a continuous practice of the Muslim ummah in this regard. However, the practice from the first century to the present day is to the contrary. Yes, there is certainly the practice of reading durūd after hearing the name of our beloved Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‛alayhi wa sallam. On the other hand, most people do not pay attention to honorific titles with the name of Allāh ta‛ālā. This is an indication of it not being wājib, it can be mustahab. Since the practice of the Muslim ummah is not against the texts, it is permissible to accept it as a proof. ‛Allāmah Shāmī rahimahullāh says in this regard:

Based on the above three reasons, the addition of honorific titles to Allāh’s name ought to be mustahab, and this view is more conducive and easier for the masses.
What is the reason for the jurists differentiating between the one who utters Allāh’s name and the one who hears it? Why did they say that it is mustahab for the one who utters His name and wājib for the one who hears it? It seems that the reason for this differentiation is that when a speaker mentions an order or injunction of Allāh ta‛ālā, His respect is automatically included. For example, Allāh ta‛ālā ordered us to perform salāh and prohibited us from alcohol. So this point is included automatically in it, viz. Allāh, the enjoiner of good and forbidder of evil. These are honorific qualities. The hearer only heard Allāh’s name, this is why it is more emphasized on him to add an honorific title to it.

And Allāh ta‛ālā knows best.

: Fatawah Darul Uloom Zakariyya Vol 1,

الفتاوى الهندية، 5 \ 315 ، كتاب الكراهية.1 2 المحيك البرهاني في الفقه النعماني: 6 \ 38 ، كتاب الإستحسان والكراهية/ مسائل التسبيح

فتاوى اللكنوي المسماة نفع المفتي والسائل، 404 ، ما يتعلق بتعظيم اسم الله وحبيبه وغيره.
2 البقية المحمودية: 5 \ 284 .
3 أخرجه الحاكم وقال: هذا حديث صحيح الإسناد ولم يخرجاه، ووافقه الذهبي: 4 \ 186 \ 7256 ، كتاب البر
والصلة، دار ابن حزم.

رواه ابن حبان في صحيحه عن أبي هريرة: 3 \ 77 \ 904 .
2 رواه الترمذي عن أبي هريرة، وقال: حديث حسن رقم 3545 ، والبوصيري في الزوائد: 6 \ 495 \ 6276 ،
كتاب الادب، وابن حبان في صحيحه: 3 \ 78 \ 905 .
3 أخرجه البخاري في الادم المفرد من حديث جابر بن عبد الله، رقم 644 .
4 رواه الترمذي عن علي بن أبي طالب، وقال: حديث حسن صحيح، رقم 2476 ، والبوصيري في الزوائد عن
الحسين بن علي: 6 \ 498 \ 6281 ، والحاكم، وقال: صحيح الإسناد، رقم 2015 ، وابن حبان في صحيحه:
3 \ 78 \ 906 ، المكتبة الاثرية.
5 أخرجه عبد الرزاق في المصنف عن محمد بن علي، رقم 3121 .
6 البحر الرائق: 1 \ 328 ، باب صفة الصلاة، كوئته.

رواه أبو داؤد: 1 \ 4 ، كتاب الطهارة، باب الخاتم يكون فيه ذكر الله تعالَ يدخل في الخلاء.
2 Refer to Ma‛ārif al-Qur’ān, vol. 3, p. 10 and vol. 1, p. 544.
3 شرح عقود رسم المفتي، ص 39 .

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