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The meaning of Kalimat at-tawhd

Question: What is the meaning of Kalimat at-tawhd?
ANSWER
When one becomes a Muslim, first and foremost, it obligatory for one to know and believe in the meaning of the phrase L ilha ill-Allah Muhammadun Rasl-Allah. This phrase is called Kalimat at-tawhd. The brief meaning of it is as follows: There is no god except Allah, and Muhammad (alaihis-salm) is His Messenger.

Ahl as-Sunnah scholars explain the meaning of the Kalimat at-tawhd as follows:
Human beings were nonexistent. They were created later. They have one Creator. He is the One who has created everything. The Creator is one. He does not have a partner or a likeness. There is no second He. He has been ever-existent; His existence did not have a beginning. He will be ever-existent; there is no end to His existence. He will not cease to exist. His existence is always necessary. His nonexistence is impossible. His existence is of Himself; He does not need any means. There is nothing that will not need Him. He is the One who creates everything and makes them go on existing. He is not material or a thing. He is not at a place or in any substance. He does not have a shape and cannot be measured. It cannot be asked how He is; when we say He, none of the things which occur to the mind or which we can imagine is He. He is unlike these. All of them are His creatures. He is not like His creatures. He is the Creator of everything that occurs to mind, every illusion and every delusion. He is not above, below, or at one side. He does not have a place. Every being is below the Arsh. And the Arsh is under His Power, under His Omnipotence. He is above the Arsh. Yet this does not mean that the Arsh carries Him. The Arsh exists with His Favour and in His Omnipotence. He is the same now as He was in eternity, in eternal past. He will always be the same in the everlasting future as He had been before creating the Arsh. No change occurs in Him. He has His own Attributes. His Attributes called as-Sift ath-Thubtiyya are eight: Hayt (Life), Ilm (Omniscience), Sam (Hearing), Basar (Seeing), Qudra (Omnipotence), Irda (Will), Kalm (Speech, Word) and Takwn (Creativeness). No change ever occurs in these Attributes of His. Change implies deficiency. He has no deficiency or defect. Though He does not resemble any of His creatures, it is possible to know Him in this world as much as He makes Himself known and to see Him in the Hereafter. Here He is known without realizing how He is, and there He will be seen in an incomprehensible way.

Allahu tal sent prophets (alaihim us-salm) to His human creatures. Through these great people, He showed His human creatures the deeds that bring happiness and those which cause ruination. The most exalted prophet is Muhammad (alaihissalm), the Last Prophet. He was sent as the Prophet for every person, pious or irreligious, for every place and for every nation on the earth. He is the Prophet for all human beings, angels and genies. In every corner of the world, everybody has to follow him and adapt himself/herself to this exalted Prophet. (Kimy-i Sadat)

The virtues of Kalimat at-tawhd
Kalimat at-tawhd, which is said by Muslims on all occasions, has many virtues. It is declared in hadth-i sharfs:
(A person who says
L ilha ill-Allah attains salvation from predicaments and afflictions.) [Bazzar]

(Renew your mn by saying L ilha ill-Allah many times.) [Tabarn]

(Out of deeds, the valuable one is saying L ilha ill-Allah.) [Hkim]

(The most virtuous dhikr [remembrance of Allahu tal] is saying L ilha ill-Allah.) [Nas]

(Saying L ilha ill-Allah averts ninety-nine predicaments, the lightest of which is distress.) [Daylam]

(The best of my sayings and of the sayings of all other prophets is L ilahe ill-Allah.) [Tirmudh]

(The sins of a person saying L ilha ill-Allah are erased, and an equal amount of thawb is recorded instead.) [Ab Yal]

(The phrase L ilha ill-Allah is the key to Paradise.) [I. Ahmad]

(If a person saying L ilha ill-Allah is sincere in his word, all his sins are forgiven.) [Imm-i Ghazl]

(Inculcate people who are at the time of death with saying L ilha ill-Allah and give them glad tidings of Paradise as well. The moment when Shaytan is the closest to a person is this moment.) [Ab Nuaym]

(Do not force a severely ill person to say L ilha ill-Allah. Only inculcate him with it.) [Dra Qutn]

(If a persons last saying is L ilha ill-Allah, his soul departs from his body easily. And this phrase will be light for him.) [Hkim]

(When the next world is preferred to this world, the phrase L ilha ill-Allah serves as a buffer against Allahs wrath. However, when a person who prefers worldly benefits to the next world says L ilha ill-Allah, Allahu tal declares, You are lying. You are not sincere in your word.) [Bayhaq]

(Do not call a person saying L ilha ill-Allah a disbeliever on account of his sins. Anyone who calls such a person a disbeliever becomes one himself.) [Bukhr]

(On the Day of Resurrection, the face of a person who says L ilha ill-Allah one hundred times a day will shine like the full moon.) [Tabarn]

[When you say the 100th one, you had better add the phrase Muhammadun rasl-Allah. To recite compatibly with tajwd, you should say Muhammad-urrasl-Allah.]

(By abstaining from harms [prohibited acts], if one says L ilha ill-Allah with ikhls [sincerity], he enters Paradise.) [Khatb, Tabarn]

(A person who says
L ilha ill-Allah with ikhls enters Paradise. Ikhls means its precluding the sayer from harms.) [Tabarn]

Ikhls is to dispel and clean everything from the heart except the love of Allah.

The following hadth-i sharfs state:
(Allahu tal will be pleased with anyone who believes in the Oneness of Allahu tal and who performs his salt and gives obligatory almsgiving zakt with sincerity.) [Ibni Mja]

(Perform your acts of worship with ikhls! Allahu tal accepts only those acts of worship done with sincerity.) [Dra Qutn]

(Perform your acts of worship with ikhls. Any worship which is done with sincerity, even if it is not much in quantity, would be sufficient for you on the Day of Gathering.) [Ab Nuaym]

(Congratulations to those who perform their worships with sincerity. They are the stars of guidance Hidyat. They annihilate the darkness caused by instigations fitnas.) [Ab Nuaym]

(If a person performs acts of worship with sincerity for 40 days, a stream of wisdom will flow from his heart to his tongue.)
[Abushshaikh]

Tawhd and mn
Question:
Could you give us information about tawhd, that is, believing in that there is no god other than Allah?
ANSWER
Hadrat Imm-i Ghazl states:
Tawhd is like a fresh walnut. Everybody knows the two shells of a walnut as well as its kernel. And the kernel of its kernel is its oil. Munfiqs [hypocrites, people who pretend to be a Muslim though being a disbeliever] say L ilha ill-Allah with the tongue only, and they do not believe it with the heart. This is the first grade of Tawhd.

The second grade: This is the hearts believing in the meaning of tawhd. This belief is either by seeing, hearing from others, e.g. the belief of us, the ignorant people, or one believes through proofs, with minds proving. So is the belief of the savants of dn [religion], of the masters of the knowledge of Kalm.

[knowledge of Kalm: this is the branch of knowledge that explains the Kalimat ash-shahdat and the six tenets of mn relative to it.]

The third grade: This is to see that one Creator creates everything, to realize that all work is done by one agent only and that none else does anything. This seeing and understanding requires a nr [light, halo] being lit in the heart. Such an mn [belief] is unlike the mn of the ignorant or of the savants of Kalm. For example, there are three kinds of believing that the resident of a house is in the house:
1. To believe it by hearing someone say so. The mn through imitation is a reminiscence of this.
2. To believe by seeing the things used by the resident every day, such as his mount, his headgear and shoes in the house. This is an example for the mn of the savants of Kalm.
3. To believe by seeing the resident in the house. This is an example for the tawhd of rifs. Though such tawhd has a very high grade, its owner sees the creatures and knows that they were created by the Creator. Since the creatures are seen, the tawhd cannot be perfect.

The fourth grade: Such a person sees one being. It is not seen more than one. Men of tasawwuf call this state Fan in tawhd.

Of the four grades above,
The first one is the tawhd of munfiqs, and it is like the outer shell of a walnut. As the outer shell of a walnut is bitter and looks ugly from within though a lovely green from outside, and when burned it makes lots of smoke and puts the fire out and is useless except that it protects the walnut for a few days. As to the tawhd of munfiqs, since it is not known by people that they are munfiq, people consider them as Muslims.

The second grade is the tawhd of the ignorant and of the savants of Kalm. It is like the wooden second shell of the walnut. As this wooden shell of the walnut does not avail except to protect the walnut for a while, so this grade of tawhd avails only in protecting people from Hell fire.

The third grade is like the walnuts kernel. It is the edible and useful part.

The fourth grade is
like that the kernel of a walnut is eaten and digested until it has reached to your cells.

 
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Date of Update
19 Eyll 2018 aramba
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