The cause of persistence of the blessings ()

Faisal Bin Misheal Bin Saud

 

To each Muslim slave asking Allah for persistence of the blessing, to each one needing to know the method of thanksgiving which makes the blessings persistent, to whom Allah bestowed on many blessings none knows them but the Generous, and to each one needing the increase and persistence of the blessings by Allah.

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 The cause of persistence of the blessings

“And He gave you of all that you asked for, and if you count the Blessings of Allah, never will you be able to count them.”  (Ibrahim: 34)

Collected and prepared by:

DR. Faisal bin Mash’al bin Sa’ud bin Abdul Aziz al Sa’ud

Translated by: Abu Anas Sami bin Emarah.

In the Name of Allah,

the Most Beneficent,

the Most Merciful.

Allah (Exalted is He) said:

وَإِنْ تَعُدُّوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ لَا تُحْصُوهَا))

 “and if you count the Blessings of Allah, never will you be able to count them.”  (Ibrahim: 34)

) وَمَا بِكُمْ مِنْ نِعْمَةٍ فَمِنَ اللَّهِ

" And whatever of blessings and good things you have, it is from Allah."

(( كُلُوا مِنْ رِزْقِ رَبِّكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لَهُ بَلْدَةٌ طَيِّبَةٌ وَرَبٌّ غَفُورٌ

"Eat of the provision of your Lord, and be grateful to Him, a fair land and an Oft­Forgiving Lord."

لئن شكرتم لأزيدنكم))

"If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings)"

(فَاذْكُرُونِي أَذْكُرْكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِي وَلَا تَكْفُرُونِ)

"Therefore remember Me (by praying, glorifying, etc.). I will remember you, and be grateful to Me (for My countless Favours on you) and never be ungrateful to Me."

So, we ask You to help us to remember, thank, worship You perfectly.

Allah (Exalted is He) said:

الْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ الَّذِي هَدَانَا لِهَـذَا وَمَا كُنَّا لِنَهْتَدِيَ لَوْلا أَنْ هَدَانَا اللّهُ ) الأعراف: 43)

“All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has guided us to this, never could we have found guidance, were it not that Allah had guided us!" (Al-A'raf: 43)

رَبَّنَا لاَ تُزِغْ قُلُوبَنَا بَعْدَ إِذْ هَدَيْتَنَا وَهَبْ لَنَا مِن لَّدُنكَ رَحْمَةً إِنَّكَ أَنتَ الْوَهَّابُ }آل عمران8}

(They say): "Our Lord! Let not our hearts deviate (from the truth) after You have guided us, and grant us mercy from You. Truly, You are the Bestower." (Aal-'Imran: 8)

 Dedication

To each Muslim slave asking Allah for persistence of the blessing, to each one needing to know the method of thanksgiving which makes the blessings persistent, to whom Allah bestowed on many blessings none knows them but the Generous, and to each one needing the increase and persistence of the blessings by Allah.

I present the effort of a person on whom Allah has bestowed many blessings, and he confesses to its abundance in quality and quantity.

I present this booklet asking the Helper (Exalted is He) to make it beneficial, forgive the sins, conceal the faults and make me and you of those who are patient when they are exposed to a calamity, and thankful when they are bestowed on, He is All-Hearer, Responsive.

Our Lord! All the praises and thanks be to You

                O Allah! All the praises and thanks be to You for creating, sustaining, guiding, teaching, saving and removing our troubles.

All the praises and thanks be to You for the faith.

All the praises and thanks be to You for Islam.

All the praises and thanks be to You for the Qur'ân.

All the praises and thanks be to You for the household, money and well-being. You suppressed our enemy, increased our provision, provided us with safety, gathered us together, gave us all what we asked you for.

So, I say very much: “All the praises and thanks be to You for that."

All the praises and thanks be to You for each grace You bestowed on us beforetime or recently, secretly or openly, personally or generally, on a dead, alive, present or absent person.

All the praises and thanks be to You until You are pleased, and all the praises and thanks be to You when You are pleased.

May Allah exalt the mention of our Prophet Muhammad, his household and companions, and peace be upon them.[1]

 The praising of Allah

I say: "All the praises are for the Lord of worlds" as many times as the number of His creatures, in accordance with His Good Pleasure, equal to the ink that may be used in recording His words and equal to the weight of His Throne.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of remembrance of Him by the tongues.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of talking of the tongues, and declaring of Athan (calling for prayers).

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of weighing by the balance and reciting of the Qur'ân.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of the feathers, the hairs of the camels, the sand particles and the stones.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of eye lashes, hairs, and folds of the foam of the ocean.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of walking of the feet, and writing by the pens.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of arranging of the rows, and writing of the letters.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of the heavens and what they shaded, and the number of the earthes and what they carried.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of the alternation of the night and the day.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of prayers of the observers of prayers, fasting of the observers of fasting, and "Talbiyah" of the pilgrims and the observers of "Umrah".

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of circumbulation of the circumbulators, and "Sa'yi" of the observers of "Sa'yi".

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of sun rising, and appearance of the moon.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of sun setting, and fading of the moon.

"All the praises are for Allah" as many times as the number of what was found, what is found, what will be found.

"All the praises are for Allah" until He's pleased, when He's pleased, and after His Pleasure.

And I say: “I honor Allah from all what (unsuitable things) is ascribed to Him, and all the praises are for Him, I honor Allah, the Most Great, from all what (unsuitable things) is ascribed to Him” as many times as the number of that.

I say:” There is no true god except Allah, Allah is Greater, and there is neither might nor any power except with Allah the Most High, the Most Great.” as many times as the number of that.

I seek the Forgiveness of Allah, the Most Great, there is no true god except Him, the Ever-Living, the Self-Subsisting, and I turn to Him in repentance as many times as the number of that.

May Allah exalt the mention of our Prophet Muhammad, all his household and companions.

 Introduction

                All the praises and thanks be to Allah, may Allah exalt the mention of His chosen slave, Muhammad bin Abd Allah, his household and companions. And peace be upon them.

Surely, the Graces of Allah, Exalted and Majestic is He, on His slaves are very much, and the greatest of these graces is the grace of guidance to Islam and what a great grace! There are many graces lower to it, at which the weak slave with his restricted mind is amazed, and none can count them but Allah, who has bestowed them.

It is known that the source of the blessings is Allah, so the slave should be keen on persistence of the blessings, which does not occur but by another blessing which is thanksgiving and this was apparent frankly in Allah’s Saying:

لئن شكرتم لأزيدنكم))

"If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings)"[2] So, thanksgiving is the cause of persistence of the blessings and whosoever is inspired to thank Allah, will not be deprived of the increase.

The grade of thanksgiving is one of the highest grades, Allah has commanded to do it, forbidden its opposite, praised its doers, described His chosen slaves by doing it, made it the goal of His Creation and Command, promised its doers the best reward, made it a cause for increasing His Grace and a guardian of His Blessing, told that its doers are those who get benefit from His Verses, and derived a name for them from His Names, as He (I honor Him from all unsuitable things ascribed to Him) is the Thankful.[3] 

Surely, the thanksgiving for the blessing is a proof for straightness of the principles in the human soul, as the good is thanked as it is its natural reward in the straight instinct, and no one can dispense with this form of worship but who has been deprived of all the good.

So, I'd like to talk about this valuable subject so that our souls may be purified, as the slave, who thanks Allah for His Blessing, deals with it without arrogance or using it in hurting others, and this purifies the soul and motivates it to do righteous deeds.

It is noticed that some people, on thanking Allah, say: (All the praises and thanks be to Allah) without doing righteous deeds as a truthful proof for their thanksgiving to Him.

On the other side, some people utter the words of thanksgiving to Allah while they use His Blessings in disobeying Him contradicting what they claim, so I concentrated in this research on correcting this false concept.

Lastly, whatever right in this research is from Allah alone, as He is the Giver of it, and whatever wrong in it is from me and Satan, and Allah and His Messenger are dissociated from it.

And the guidance is from Allah, and may Allah exalt the mention of our Prophet Muhammad, all his household and companions.

The author

20/8/1418 H

 The thanksgiving: Its definition and core

The thanksgiving in the language: means the appearance, as we say a thankful beast if it becomes fatty in excess of the feed given to it, and the thanksgiving is opposite to the denial.[4]

The thanksgiving is mentioned in 77 citations in different forms such as: a verb, a noun, single, plural, and an exaggeration form to show the importance of this merit in the life of people.

The thanksgiving idiomatically:

The sayings of the scholars were different as regards the definition of the thanksgiving, and one of the best definitions is what was said by Thennoon Abulfayd (May Allah have mercy on him):"The thanksgiving to anyone who is higher than you is by obedience to him, by reward to anyone who is equal to you, and by beneficence to anyone who is lower than you)[5]

And Sahl bin Abd Allah (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" The thanksgiving is doing one's best to obey Allah with avoiding the sins in secret and in public."[6]

                And it was defined by the adherence of the heart to the love of the Giver, the organs to the acts of obedience, and the tongue to remembering and praising Him[7]

                And Al-Gonaid (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “The thanksgiving is not to disobey Allah using His Grace."[8]

                And Ash-Shibly (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “The thanksgiving is the humility, adherence to good deeds, not following the lusts, and watching the Compeller (Exalted is He)."[9]

And by combining between these sayings, we can define the thanksgiving by praising the Giver for His Grace, and confessing to the dereliction of the commander.

 The core of thanksgiving

Let's try to reflect on the core of thanksgiving and the sayings of the scholars about it in order not to misunderstand its core, and not to waste our life in a way not agreeing with the truth.

So, what is its core?

Al-Qurtoby (May Allah have mercy on him) said: The core of thanksgiving is confessing to the Blessing of the Giver, and not to disobey Him using His Grace.

And Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" The core of thanksgiving to Allah is the appearance of the effect of His Blessing on His slave' tongue in the form of praising and confession, on his heart in the form of love and magnification, and on his organs in the form of obedience and submission."[10]

So, it has been manifest to you that the core of thanksgiving is the confession to the blessing by heart, talking about it by tongue, and using it to gain the Pleasure of its Giver.

For example, for whom Allah bestowed money on, the core of his thanksgiving is performing the commands of Allah related to it as giving its Zakât, spending it in the ways of righteousness, and spending it on himself, his family and relatives.

And Al-Hassan Al-Basry said as regards this meaning: “This money was given to you lawfully, so don't let it be a heartbreak for you, and know that there will be heartbreaks on the Day of Resurrection, and the slave with the greatest heartbreak is who sees his money in the balance of others, its collector will be unhappy with it, while its inheritor will be happy with it, so, what a heartbreak that can't be removed."[11] 

 The advantage of thanksgiving

The thanksgiving has many advantages, and there're many citations in the Qur'ân and Sunnah illustrating them to motivate the hearts to be thankful and obedient to Allah, and these are some of these advantages:

 1- The thanksgiving forms half of the faith:

This was said by several scholars of our righteous ancestors, such as Abd Allah bin Mas'oud (May Allah be pleased with him) who said:" The faith has two halves: the patience and the thanksgiving" So, Allah combined between them in His Saying:

إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لَآيَاتٍ لِكُلِّ صَبَّارٍ شَكُورٍ

“Truly, therein are evidences, proofs and signs for every patient, thankful (person)." at different verses in His Book (Ibrahim: 5, Luqman: 31, Saba': 19, and Ash-Shurah: 33)

And Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) wrote his valuable book " Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin" addressing this meaning, and said:"The grade of thanksgiving is of the highest grades, and it's superior to the grade of pleasure, as the pleasure is included in the thanksgiving, and the thanksgiving forms half of the faith, as the faith has two halves: the patience and the thanksgiving"[12]

 2- The thanksgiving is the way to the pleasure of Allah:

If the slave persists in the thanksgiving to Allah, He'll be pleased with his thanksgiving and accept it, as the Pleasure of Allah with His slave follows the slave's thanksgiving, as He (Exalted is He) said:

 (وَإِنْ تَشْكُرُوا يَرْضَهُ لَكُمْ)

"And if you are grateful (by being believers), He is pleased therewith for you." (Az-Zumar: 7)

 3- The thanksgiving is the companion of the worship:

so they are usually mentioned together, as He (Exalted is He) said:

(وَقَلِيلٌ مِنْ عِبَادِيَ الشَّكُورُ)

"But few of My slaves are grateful." (Saba': 13)

And said:

 (وَاشْكُرُوا لِلَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ)

"and be grateful to Allah, if it is indeed He Whom you worship"(Al-Baqarah: 172)

And said:

وَاعْبُدُوهُ وَاشْكُرُوا لَهُ إِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ)

“And worship Him (Alone), and be grateful to Him. To Him (Alone) you will be brought back." (Al-Ankabut  :17)

So, He informed us that he who worships Him is he who thanks Him, and vice versa[13] 

 4- The thanksgiving is a character of the Prophets (Peace be upon them):

 Verily, Allah has mentioned that the thanksgiving was one of the greatest forms of worship, in which the leader of the Monotheists, Ibrahim, was interested, and praised him for it, as He (Exalted is He) said: 

(إِنَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ كَانَ أُمَّةً قَانِتًا لِلَّهِ حَنِيفًا وَلَمْ يَكُ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ (120) شَاكِرًا لِأَنْعُمِهِ...)

"Verily, Ibrâhim (Abraham) was an Ummah (a leader having all the good righteous qualities), or a nation, obedient to Allah, Hanif (i.e. to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikûn (polytheists, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah, and those who joined partners with Allah). (He was) thankful for His (Allah’s) Graces." (An-Nahl: 120-121)

So, Allah described him as: - an Ummah, who is a leader having all the good righteous qualities.

- obedient to Allah.

- Hanif, who worships none but Allah.

- Thankful for His Graces.

So, He made the thanksgiving the goal of His beloved slave.[14]

And He said that Ibrâhim said:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي وَهَبَ لِي عَلَى الْكِبَرِ إِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِسْحَاقَ إِنَّ رَبِّي لَسَمِيعُ الدُّعَاءِ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has given me in old age Ismâ'il (Ishmael) and Ishâque (Isaac). Verily! My Lord is indeed the All-Hearer of invocations." (Ibrahim: 39)

And Dawûd and Sulaimân (Peace be upon them) said:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي فَضَّلَنَا عَلَى كَثِيرٍ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has preferred us above many of His believing slaves!" (An-Naml: 15)

And Sulaimân (Peace be upon him) said when Allah bestowed on him:

هَذَا مِنْ فَضْلِ رَبِّي لِيَبْلُوَنِي أَأَشْكُرُ أَمْ أَكْفُرُ وَمَنْ شَكَرَ فَإِنَّمَا يَشْكُرُ لِنَفْسِهِ وَمَنْ كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ رَبِّي غَنِيٌّ كَرِيمٌ

"This is by the Grace of my Lord to test me whether I am grateful or ungrateful! And whoever is grateful, truly, his gratitude is for (the good of) his ownself, and whoever is ungrateful, (he is ungrateful only for the loss of his ownself). Certainly! My Lord is Rich (Free of all wants), Bountiful." (An-Naml: 40)[15]

                And He commanded His slave Mûsa to receive what He gave him of the Prophethood, Message, and Talking by the gratitude, as He said:

قَالَ يَا مُوسَى إِنِّي اصْطَفَيْتُكَ عَلَى النَّاسِ بِرِسَالَاتِي وَبِكَلَامِي فَخُذْ مَا آتَيْتُكَ وَكُنْ مِنَ الشَّاكِرِينَ

"(Allah) said: "O Mûsa (Moses) I have chosen you above men by My Messages, and by My speaking (to you). So hold that which I have given you and be of the grateful." (Al-A'raf: 144)[16]

                And when Allah drowned Nûh's people, and saved him and the believers with him in the ship, He commanded him to praise Him, as He said:

فَإِذَا اسْتَوَيْتَ أَنْتَ وَمَنْ مَعَكَ عَلَى الْفُلْكِ فَقُلِ الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي نَجَّانَا مِنَ الْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ

"And when you have embarked on the ship, you and whoever is with you, then say: "All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has saved us from the people who are Zâlimûn (i.e. oppressors, wrong-doers, polytheists, those who join others in worship with Allah, etc.)" (Al-Mu'minun: 28)

So, he (Peace be upon him) was a thankful slave, and when the slaves come to him on the Day of Resurrection, they'll say to him:" Allah named you a thankful slave"[17] referring to His Saying:

ذُرِّيَّةَ مَنْ حَمَلْنَا مَعَ نُوحٍ إِنَّهُ كَانَ عَبْدًا شَكُورًا

"O offspring of those whom We carried (in the ship) with Nûh (Noah)! Verily, he was a grateful slave." (Al-Isra': 3 )

                Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “And Allah’s mention of Nûh specifically here, and calling the slaves as his progeny refers to the importance of following him, as he is their Second Father, as Allah hasn't given the creatures any progeny but from his progeny, as He said:

وَجَعَلْنَا ذُرِّيَّتَهُ هُمُ الْبَاقِينَ

"And, his progeny, them We made the survivors (i.e. Shem, Ham and Japheth)" (As-Saffaat: 77)

So, He commanded the progeny to imitate their Father, as he was a grateful slave."

                And the Prophet Muhammad (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) used to pray at night until his feet swelled, He was asked: "Why do you do this while your past and future sins have been forgiven?'' and he said, "should I not be a thankful slave"[18]

And so, he singled out his beloved companions to recieve a great piece of advice, as in the tradition narrated by Mu`adh bin Gabal (May Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet said, "O Mu`adh, By Allah, I love you and advise you not to miss supplicating after every Salat (prayer) saying: `Allahumma a`inni `ala dhikrika wa shukrika, wa husni `ibadatika,' (O Allah, help me remember You, express gratitude to You and worship You in the best manner)".[19]

So, some scholars said: the gratitude is of two types:

1-       The gratitude of the public for the food, clothes, drink, and body strength.

2-       The gratitude of the chosen slaves for the faith, monotheism, and heart strength.

 5- The thanksgiving is a character of the people of Paradise:

When reflecting on the people of Paradise, and what Allah bestowed on them of the pleasure, we'll find that they praise Allah (Exalted is He) at different situations:

- When Allah (Exalted is He) descends to judge between the slaves, and says:

وَامْتَازُوا الْيَوْمَ أَيُّهَا الْمُجْرِمُونَ

"(It will be said): "And O you Al-Mujrimûn (criminals, polytheists, sinners, disbelievers in the Islâmic Monotheism, wicked evil ones, etc.)! Get you apart this Day (from the believers)."[20] , the people of the Hell Fire will be driven to it, and the believers, after crossing As-Sirat (a bridge will be laid across the Hell) and seeing others falling down, will praise Him and may say:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي نَجَّانَا مِنَ الْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has saved us from the people who are Zâlimûn (i.e. oppressors, wrong-doers, polytheists, those who join others in worship with Allah, etc.)" (Al-Mu'minun: 28)

- When they take a bath in the Liver of Life, become purified from the dirts of the worldy life, and look at Paradise, they'll praise Him and may say:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي هَدَانَا لِهَذَا وَمَا كُنَّا لِنَهْتَدِيَ لَوْلَا أَنْ هَدَانَا اللَّهُ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has guided us to this, never could we have found guidance, were it not that Allah had guided us!" (Al-A'raf: 43)

                - When they enter Paradise, see what Allah prepared inside it for His righteous slaves, and taste its sweetness, they'll praise Him and say:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي صَدَقَنَا وَعْدَهُ وَأَوْرَثَنَا الْأَرْضَ نَتَبَوَّأُ مِنَ الْجَنَّةِ حَيْثُ نَشَاءُ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah Who has fulfilled His Promise to us and has made us inherit (this) land. We can dwell in Paradise where we will." (Az-Zumar: 74)

                - When they settle in their houses, which are full of the Houris (female, fair ones with wide lovely eyes) and delight, they'll praise Him and say:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي أَذْهَبَ عَنَّا الْحَزَنَ إِنَّ رَبَّنَا لَغَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ (34) الَّذِي أَحَلَّنَا دَارَ الْمُقَامَةِ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ لَا يَمَسُّنَا فِيهَا نَصَبٌ وَلَا يَمَسُّنَا فِيهَا لُغُوبٌ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has removed from us (all) grief. Verily, our Lord is indeed Oft­Forgiving, Most Ready to appreciate (good deeds and to recompense). 35. Who, out of His Grace, has lodged us in a home that will last forever; there, toil will touch us not, nor weariness will touch us."(Fatir: 34-35) We ask Allah for His Grace.

So, it's mandatory for every believer to praise Allah, and know that He has chosen him and made him one of the believers, and what a Great Grace!

 6- The thanksgiving is the cause of persistence of the blessings,

 as the blessings are from Allah, and He bestowed them on His creatures to try them, so he who denies them, will be deprived of them, and they may be left with him as a trial for him, then they'll go away as if they were not present by a single dipping into the Hell Fire, May Allah protect us from it.

                On the other hand, he who thanks Allah for them, He'll preserve and increase them for him, as the thanksgiving is always associated with the increase, as He said:    

لَئِنْ شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ وَلَئِنْ كَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِي لَشَدِيدٌ

"If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings), but if you are thankless (i.e. disbelievers), verily! My Punishment is indeed severe." (Ibrahim: 7)

"i.e. if you thank for My Favour, I'll give you more of My Grace."[21]

So, Allah made the thanksgiving a sign for the increase, and vice versa, and this is a truthful promise from Allah, and so the thanksgiving has been named "the protector" as it preserves the present blessings, and "the fetcher" as it brings the missed blessings. 

                And it was narrated that Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) said: “The blessing increases and becomes persistent by the thanksgiving, and the increase won't be cut until the slave stops thanksgiving."

                And Omar bin Abd El-Azeez (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" The blessings of Allah come by the thanksgiving to Him."[22]

                And Ga'far bin Muhammad bin Ali bin Al-Hussein said to Sufian Ath-Thawry (May Allah have mercy on them):"If Allah gives you a blessing, and you want it to be persistent, you should increase praising and thanksgiving, as He said:

  لَئِنْ شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ

"If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings)" (Ibrahim: 7)[23]

                And Al-Mugheerah bin Shou'bah said:" Thank who gives you, and give who thanks you, as there's no persistence for the blessings if they're denied, and there's no vanishing of them if they're thanked for."

                And Sulaimân At-Taymy (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" Allah commanded the slaves to thank Him according to their ability, so any thanksgiving even if little, can be a cause of a blessing even if great."

                And it was said: "If you can't reward, keep thanksgiving."[24]

Verily, the souls of people become purified through directing towards Allah, become straight through thanksgiving for the good, and become calm through connecting to Him.

And it was narrated that Ali (May Allah be pleased with him) said:" Thank the Bestower on you, as the blessings don't vanish if they're thanked for, don't persist if they're denied, and the thanksgiving increases the blessings and protects from the calamities."[25]

So, when you notice that your conditions are bad, you should adhere to the thanksgiving to see the Grace of the Generous, Allah (Exalted is He), and this is a glad tiding for the believer in this worldy life, and in the Hereafter there's " what no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and the mind of no man has conceived."[26]

 The reward of thanksgiving

The reward of thanksgiving is absolute without a limit, and the proof for this concept is that Allah (Exalted is He) suspended many types of rewards on His Will, such as His Saying:

فَسَوْفَ يُغْنِيكُمُ اللَّهُ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ إِنْ شَاءَ

"Allah will enrich you if He will, out of His Bounty."(At-Taubah: 28)

And He informed us that He responds to whom He wills, as He said:

فَيَكْشِفُ مَا تَدْعُونَ إِلَيْهِ إِنْ شَاءَ

"If He will, He would remove that (distress) for which you call upon Him" (Al-An'am: 41), and His Provision and Forgiveness are suspended on on His Will also, as He said:

وَاللَّهُ يَرْزُقُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ

"And Allah gives (of His Bounty, Blessings, Favours, Honours, etc. on the Day of Resurrection) to whom He wills without limit" (Al-Baqarah: 212)

And said:

يَغْفِرُ لِمَنْ يَشَاءُ

"He forgives whom He wills" (Ale-Imran: 129)

And accepting the repentance also, as He said:

وَيَتُوبُ اللَّهُ عَلَى مَنْ يَشَاءُ

"Allah accepts the repentance of whom He wills" (At-Taubah: 15)

While He has made the reward of thanksgiving absolute without a limit, as He said:

وَسَيَجْزِي اللَّهُ الشَّاكِرِينَ

"and Allah will give reward to those who are grateful." (Ale-Imran: 144)

And said:

وَسَنَجْزِي الشَّاكِرِينَ

"And We shall reward the grateful"(Ale-Imran: 145)

So, when the enemy of Allah, Iblis, knew the high grade of the thanksgiving, and that it's one of the highest grades, he has intended to prevent the slaves from performing it, and said:

ثُمَّ لَآتِيَنَّهُمْ مِنْ بَيْنِ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمِنْ خَلْفِهِمْ وَعَنْ أَيْمَانِهِمْ وَعَنْ شَمَائِلِهِمْ وَلَا تَجِدُ أَكْثَرَهُمْ شَاكِرِينَ

"Then I will come to them from before them and behind them, from their right and from their left, and You will not find most of them as thankful ones (i.e. they will not be dutiful to You)." (Al-A'raf: 17)[27]

So, the thanksgiving is one of the acts of obedience which are highly rewarded, and its grade is of the greatest grades, and so the thankful, patient believer has been given all the good in prosperity and in adversity, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

عجبا لأمر المؤمن إن أمره كله له خير وليس ذلك لأحد إلا للمؤمن : إن أصابته سراء شكر فكان خيرا له وإن أصابته ضراء صبر فكان خيرا له

"How wonderful is the case of a believer; there is good for him in everything and this applies only to a believer. If prosperity attends him, he expresses gratitude to Allah and that is good for him; and if adversity befalls him, he endures it patiently and that is better for him"[28]

 Can the blessings be counted?

It's well known that the blessings can't be counted anyway, as Allah frankly said:  

وَإِنْ تَعُدُّوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ لَا تُحْصُوهَا إِنَّ الْإِنْسَانَ لَظَلُومٌ كَفَّارٌ))

"and if you count the Blessings of Allah, never will you be able to count them. Verily! Man is indeed an extreme wrong-doer, a disbeliever (an extreme ingrate, denies Allah’s Blessings by disbelief, by worshipping others besides Allah, and by disobeying Allah and His Prophet Muhammad "  (Ibrahim: 34)

And said:

وَإِنْ تَعُدُّوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ لَا تُحْصُوهَا إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَغَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ))

 “And if you count the Blessings of Allah, never will you be able to count them. Truly! Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful"(An-Nahl: 18)

So, if we want to count the Blessings of Allah to thank and reward Him (Exalted is He), we seek the impossible, as in the previous two verses, Allah has cut the way of exhaustion and wasting of our lives in counting, and reflect on their ends:

-          In the first verse, it describes the nature of the bestowed on, which is the aggression and denial.

-          In the second verse, it describes the nature of the bestower who forgives and bestows His Mercy and Blessings on His slaves, so He ended it by saying:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَغَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ

“Truly! Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful"(An-Nahl: 18)

 i.e. He knows your dereliction and your forgetting, even if you do your best, so, He forgives you if he knows that you have good, thankful souls.

                Al-Qurtoby (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “This verse means that you can't endure counting Allah’s Blessings due to their abundance as the hearing, vision, and provision, so, why do you exchange the thanksgiving for Allah’s Blessings for the denial? And why don't you use them in obeying Him?

إِنَّ الْإِنْسَانَ لَظَلُومٌ كَفَّارٌ))

 “Verily! Man is indeed an extreme wrong-doer, a disbeliever (an extreme ingrate, denies Allah’s Blessings by disbelief, and by worshipping others besides Allah, and by disobeying Allah and His Prophet Muhammad)."  (Ibrahim: 34)[29]

                And the cause of their unaccountability includes the quantity and quality, and so, Sulaimân At-Taymy (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" Allah bestowed on His slaves according to His Majesty, and commanded them to thank Him according to their ability."

                And David (Peace be upon him) said: "O my Lord! Show me Your most unapparent Blessing on me", He said: “O David! Take a breath", so, David took a breath, Allah said: “Who can count this blessing?”

So, according to what we mentioned before, it's sure that counting the blessings is impossible, so, we should be shy of Allah, confess to His Great Grace, and do our best relying on Him and asking Him for His Help and Guidance to thank Him for His Blessings.

 How can we thank Allah for His Blessings?

As regards the method, the gratitude to Allah for His Blessings has 3 types:

1-       The gratitude by the heart: through the love of the Giver, and the submission to Him with confession to His Blessings, as the gratitude has 5 foundations: the submission of the commander to the thanked, the love, the confession to his grace, praising him for it, and not to use it in doing what he hates.[30]

2-       The gratitude by the tongue: through the confession to the Blessing of Allah, praising Him continuously, and talking about it, as He (Exalted is He) said:

وَأَمَّا بِنِعْمَةِ رَبِّكَ فَحَدِّثْ

"And proclaim the Grace of your Lord (i.e. the Prophethood and all other Graces)." (Ad-Duha: 11)

And Gabir (May Allah be pleased with him) said that the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

من أعطي عطاء فوجد فليجز به ومن لم يجد فليثن، فإن من أثنى فقد شكر ومن

كتم فقد كفر، ومن تحلى بما لم يعطه كان كلابس ثوبي زور

"He who has been given a gift, should reward the giver for it if he can, and if not, he should praise him, as the praising is thanksgiving, and the concealing is denial, and he who claims that he has been given something in contrary to the truth, is like a person wearing two pieces of forged clothes."[31]

(Verily, the Prophet, May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him,

mentioned in this tradition the three types of the creatures: the thankful for the grace who praises Him for it, the concealer of it, and the person who claims that he has been given something in contrary to the truth.

And it's narrated that the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

والتحدث بنعمة الله شكر

"And the talking about the blessings of Allah, the Exalted, is a type of thanksgiving."[32])[33]

Briefly, the talking about the blessings of Allah, the Exalted, is a type of thanksgiving, and is praiseworthy if it isn't accompanied by arrogance, as it demolishes the good deeds, I seek refuge with Allah.

3-       The gratitude by the organs: as the work of the feet, hands, hearing, and vision. For example, the thanksgiving for the blessing of money is by spending it in the Way of Allah (Exalted is He), as the thanksgiving isn't by the tongue only. Nay, if these organs are used in obeying Allah, that is a thanksgiving to Him, and He described good deeds as a type of thanksgiving, as He said  

(اعْمَلُوا آلَ دَاوُودَ شُكْرًا وَقَلِيلٌ مِنْ عِبَادِيَ الشَّكُورُ)

"Work you, O family of Dâwud (David), with thanks! But few of My slaves are grateful." (Saba': 13)

And the commender to his Lord, who confesses to His Blessings, is pleased with Allah, the Exalted, and Allah is pleased with him, and as regards this meaning, one of our righteous ancestors said:" The perfect thanksgiving is by 3 things:

1-       If Allah, the Exalted, gives you something, you should praise Him for it.

2-       You should be pleased with what He gave you.

3-       As long as the benefit of this gift is with you, you shouldn't disobey Him."

And if we reflect on these blessings, we'll find much dereliction in the thanksgiving for them, as there're many people who enjoy the Blessings of Allah, the Exalted, while they are disobedient to Him.

And the thanksgiving by the organs has 2 types:

1-       Existential: which means using them in obeying Allah, the Exalted.

2-       Passive: which means not using them in disobeying Him

For example, the hearing and the vision are of the greatest Blessings of Allah, and the thanksgiving for them is achieved through using them in what pleases Him, so, don't listen to or look at what He has forbidden, and if you do, your thanksgiving is incorrect.

And the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

إن الله يحب أن يرى أثر نعمته على عبده

"Allah loves to see the sign of His Bounties on His slave."[34]

To summerise, the thanksgiving isn't achieved but by the combination

of the heart, tongue and organs, and he who has missed one of them, has contradicted the core of thanksgiving.

 The factors leading to the thanksgiving

Surely, the thanksgiving has several factors which lead to it, such as:

1- Be pleased with what Allah, the Exalted, has foreordained for you: If you are pleased with what Allah has foreordained for you in this worldy life, and believe that which misses you, was not to hit you; and what hits you is good for you, and was never to miss you, you'll lead a happy, calm life, and this pleasure with the Foreordainment will make you praise Allah for what He gave you, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

من أصبح منكم آمنا في سربه معافى في جسده عنده قوت يومه فكأنما حيزت له الدنيا بحذافيرها

"Whosoever begins the day feeling family security and good health; and possessing provision for his day, is as if he possesed the whole world."[35]

2- Reflect on the Blessings of Allah, the Exalted, on you:

Surely, Allah has given you the correct belief, health, stability, righteous offspring, hearing, speech, vision, foresight, good appearance, and perfected His Graces upon you, both apparent and hidden.

There's no doubt that reflecting upon these graces has an effect on the owners of the healthy minds and straight instincts in the form of praising and thanksgiving.

3-Reflect on the states of people with the Blessings of Allah, the Exalted: As there're some persons who are lower than you as regards the piety, provision and health, so, reflect upon your being superior to them by the Grace of Allah, the Exalted, and choosing of you by Him, as this will make you thank Him for what He gave you.

And there're some persons who are superior to you as regards the piety, provision, and Allah, the Exalted, has combined between the good of this worldy life and the Hereafter for them, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

نعم المال الصالح للرجل الصالح

"How excellent is the good money for the righteous man."[36]

So, reflect upon your being inferior to them, and choosing of them by Him, then ask yourself about your dereliction, as this will make you do your best to thank your Lord, so that you may equals who preceded you, and precede who's inferior to you.

And there're some persons who are richer than you, but they don't thank Allah, the Exalted, so, don't imitate them, and don't consider this richness a sign of Allah’s Pleasure, as it may be a trial followed by the torment.

Truly, he's rich and healthy, but he has a poor soul, which doesn’t become pleased with what it's given at all, as it's deprived of the faith, thanksgiving, and good relation with Allah, the Exalted.

And the true richness is the richness of the soul, and if you reflect on his state from another side, you'll find him sad, unstable, and anxious.

And our saying:" don't imitate them" doesn't mean that you shouldn't seek for the provision or try to raise your living conditions. Nay, we mean that we need the justice in dealing with this issue without any harm, and that the muslim shouldn't be exhausted by the debts for the sake of boastfulness, as this isn't a wise behavior, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

انظروا إلى من هو أسفل منكم ولا تنظروا إلى من هو فوقكم فهو أجدر أن لا تزدروا نعمة الله عليكم

"Look at those who are inferior to you and do not look at those who are superior to you, for this will keep you from belittling Allah’s Favour on you."[37]

So, you should look at those who are superior to you as regards the piety, to imitate them, and try to be equal or better than them. Meanwhile, as regards the affairs of this worldy life, look at those who are inferior to you for this will keep you from belittling Allah’s Favour on you.

4-Lead an ascetic life and reflect continuously on your inevitable fate, Paradise or Hellfire. You must believe in that a sure belief without any doubt, and accustom yourself to waiting for the inevitable death at any moment, so, if you realize that, it'll make you lead a straight life, as he who has this attitude, is grateful to his Lord

Imam Ahmad was asked:" Can a man be ascetic while he has a million dinars?" He said: “Yes." They said: “How?" He said: “If he spends it according to the commands of Allah, the Exalted, but if it's in his heart, it'll control him."

 The types of thanksgiving

It's divided into two types according to the commender:

1-       The thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted.

2-       The thanksgiving of the creatures.

The thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted.

Allah, the Exalted, described himself as grateful, as He said:

مَا يَفْعَلُ اللَّهُ بِعَذَابِكُمْ إِنْ شَكَرْتُمْ وَآمَنْتُمْ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ شَاكِرًا عَلِيمًا

"Why should Allah punish you if you have thanked (Him) and have believed in Him. And Allah is Ever All­Appreciative (of good), All­Knowing." (An-Nisa': 147)

And said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ

"Verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Ready to appreciate (the deeds of those who are obedient to Him)." (Ash-Shurah: 23)

And said:

إِنَّهُ غَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ

"Verily! He is Oft­Forgiving, Most Ready to appreciate (good deeds and to recompense) ."(Fatir: 30)

And said:

وَاللَّهُ شَكُورٌ حَلِيمٌ

"And Allah is Most Ready to appreciate and to reward, Most Forbearing."

(Al-Taghabun: 17)

Qatadah said: “There’s no one who's more thankful than Allah, the Exalted." So, the Thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted, is proportionate to His Majesty, as He deserves the virtue of thanksgiving more than any commender. Nay, He's the Perfect Commender in fact, as He gives the slave and guides him to thank his Lord.

And since He's the Perfect Commender in fact, the most beloved of His slaves to Him is the commender, and the most hated of His slaves to Him is the denier. Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said:" Allah, the Exalted, has named Himself the Commender and the Most Thankful, and named the thankful slaves by these names, so, He has named them after His Name, and has given them His Attribute, and what a great honour!"[38]

And these are some examples of the Thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted, which has no equal:

1- He has sent down the Qur'ân, commanded His slaves to observe fasting, then He has lightened the command if there's difficulty, as He said:

وَمَنْ كَانَ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَى سَفَرٍ فَعِدَّةٌ مِنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ وَلِتُكْمِلُوا الْعِدَّةَ وَلِتُكَبِّرُوا اللَّهَ عَلَى مَا هَدَاكُمْ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

" and whoever is ill or on a journey, the same number [of days which one did not observe Saum (fasts) must be made up] from other days. Allah intends for you ease, and He does not want to make things difficult for you. (He wants that you) must complete the same number (of days), and that you must magnify Allah [i.e. to say Takbîr (Allâhu-Akbar; Allah is the Most Great) on seeing the crescent of the months of Ramadân and Shawwâl] for having guided you so that you may be grateful to Him." (Al-Baqarah: 185)

2- He, the Exalted, thanks His slaves for minor deeds and charities, and thanks for a single good deed by ten times the like thereof to many folds, and He gives the slave what he spends in His Way, so, He's the Giver of the beneficence and the gratitude, so, There's no one who's more thankful than Him, the Exalted.

And for example, the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

بينما رجل يمشي بطريق اشتد عليه العطش فوجد بئرا فنزل فيها فشرب ثم خرج فإذا كلب يلهث يأكل الثرى من العطش. فقال الرجل : لقد بلغ هذا الكلب من العطش مثل الذي كان قد بلغ مني فنزل البئر فملأ خفه ماء ثم أمسكه بفيه حتى رقي فسقى الكلب فشكر الله له فغفر له

وفي رواية: بينما كلب يطيف بركية قد كاد يقتله العطش إذ رأته بغي من بغايا بني إسرائيل فنزعت موقها فاستقت له به فسقته فغفر لها به

"While a man was walking on his way, he became extremely thirsty. He found a well, he went down into it to drink water. Upon leaving it, he saw a dog which was panting out of thirst. His tongue was lolling out and he was eating moist earth from extreme thirst. The man said to himself: `This dog is extremely thirsty as I was.' So he descended into the well, filled up his leather sock with water, and holding it in his teeth, climbed up and quenched the thirst of the dog. Allah appreciated his action and forgave his sins"

Another narration says: "Once a dog was going round the well and was about to die out of thirst. A prostitute of Banu Israel happened to see it. So she took off her leather sock and lowered it into the well. She drew out some water and gave the dog to drink. She was forgiven on account of her action."[39] How great is this thanksgiving!

3- He forgave a man as he removed a thorny branch from the way of the Muslims, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

بيْنَمَا رَجُلٌ يَمْشِي بِطَرِيقٍ وَجَدَ غُصْنَ شَوْكٍ عَلَى الطَّرِيقِ فَأَخَّرَهُ فَشَكَرَ اللَّهُ لَهُ فَغَفَرَ لَهُ

"While a man was going on a way, he saw a thorny branch and removed it from the way and Allah became pleased with his action and forgave him for that."[40]

4- He takes the slave out of Hell whereas in his heart there's Faith equal to the weight of a grain of mustard seed, as Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) said that the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said that Allah, the Exalted, will say to him on the Day of  Resurrection: “Go and take out of Hell any slave who has in his heart Faith equal to the weight of a grain of mustard seed."…Then He'll say:" I swear by My Majesty that I'll take out of Hell any slave who says that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah."[41]

5- He rewards His slave for the good deeds he does during his life even though he is of the most hated slaves to Him, such as Abu Talib, the uncle of the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him), who used to help and protect the Prophet, but he didn't embrace Islam, as he was afraid that Quraish might reprove him for that, and inspite of that, Allah, the Exalted, didn't make him equal to other disbelievers who used to plot a plot against Islam and Muslims. Nay, He lightened his torment in Hell despite his dwelling therein forever, and this is due to His Justice and Thanksgiving for what the slave does of good deeds.

6- When the slave behaves in a certain situation in a way which pleases Him, He thanks and praises him for that, as He thanked the believing man of  Fir'aun's (Pharaoh) people, whose story is mentioned in Surah Ghafir (28 – 45), as He said:

فَوَقَاهُ اللَّهُ سَيِّئَاتِ مَا مَكَرُوا وَحَاقَ بِآلِ فِرْعَوْنَ سُوءُ الْعَذَابِ

"So Allah saved him from the evils that they plotted (against him), while an evil torment encompassed Fir'aun's (Pharaoh) people."

And when Yûsuf (Joseph) endured the tightness of the prison, He thanked him by giving him full authority in the land, to take possession therein, as when or where he likes, as He said:

وَكَذَلِكَ مَكَّنَّا لِيُوسُفَ فِي الْأَرْضِ يَتَبَوَّأُ مِنْهَا حَيْثُ يَشَاءُ نُصِيبُ بِرَحْمَتِنَا مَنْ نَشَاءُ وَلَا نُضِيعُ أَجْرَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

"Thus did We give full authority to Yûsuf (Joseph) in the land, to take possession therein, as when or where he likes. We bestow of Our Mercy on whom We please, and We make not to be lost the reward of Al-Muhsinûn (the good doers)" (Yusuf: 56)

So, He changed for him the hardship into ease, the fear into safety, the fetters into freedom, and the humiliation into honour in this worldy life,

وَلَأَجْرُ الْآخِرَةِ خَيْرٌ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَكَانُوا يَتَّقُونَ

"And verily, the reward of the Hereafter is better for those who believe and used to fear Allah and keep their duty to Him (by abstaining from all kinds of sins and by performing all kinds of righteous good deeds). " (Yusuf: 57)

7- When the slave spends something for Allah’s Sake, He multiplies it to him many times, and it's He who guides him to present, and thanks him for it.

For example, when the martyrs presented their bodies for His Sake, He thanked them through putting their spirits inside green birds which fly in Paradise as when or where they like, until the Day of Resurrection.

And when Ga'far bin Abi Talib (May Allah be pleased with him) was killed in His Way, and his hands were cut, He thanked him through giving him two wings by which he flies in Paradise, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) mentioned, and Al-Bukhari narrated that Abd Allah bin Omar (May Allah be pleased with them) used to greet Abd Allah bin Ga'far (May Allah be pleased with them) saying: “Peace be upon you, O son of the owner of the two wings!"[42]

And when Sulaimân (Peace be upon him) slaughtered the horses angrily as they occupied and prevented him from remembering Allah, the Exalted, He replaced them for him by the wind which was subjected to him.

2- The thanksgiving of the creatures

It has two types:

1-       The thanksgiving of the creatures to Allah, the Exalted:

It's one of the obligations that Allah has commanded His slaves to perform, as He said:

 (فَاذْكُرُونِي أَذْكُرْكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِي وَلَا تَكْفُرُونِ)

"Therefore remember Me (by praying, glorifying, etc.). I will remember you, and be grateful to Me (for My countless Favours on you) and never be ungrateful to Me." (Al-Baqarah: 152)

And said:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُلُوا مِنْ طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِلَّهِ

"O you who believe (in the Oneness of Allah - Islâmic Monotheism)! Eat of the lawful things that We have provided you with, and be grateful to Allah." (Al-Baqarah: 172)

And said:

وَاشْكُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ

"And be grateful for the Graces of Allah."(An-Nahl: 114)

And said:

كُلُوا مِنْ رِزْقِ رَبِّكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لَهُ بَلْدَةٌ طَيِّبَةٌ وَرَبٌّ غَفُورٌ

"Eat of the provision of your Lord, and be grateful to Him, a fair land and an Oft­Forgiving Lord."(Saba': 15)

And there're many citations related to this meaning in the Book of Allah, the Exalted, so, the slave must do his best to thank his Helper, as we can't reward Allah for His Blessings, as we're the poor and He's the Rich, so, we must meet His Blessings by the gratitude, and the greatest commender of the creatures is the slave who had the best knowledge of Allah, the Prophet Muhammad (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him)

                Abu Bakrah (May Allah be pleased with him) said that the Prophet used to prostrate himself before Allah thanking Him when he receives a glad tiding.

2- The thanksgiving of the creatures to the creatures: for any service they performed, and it's a component of the gratitude to Allah, as Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: the Prophet Muhammad (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

من لا يشكر الناس لا يشكر الله

"Whoever doesn't thank the people, doesn't thank Allah."[43]

And this's manifest as the arrogant slave, who doesn't thank his brothers for their services to him, usually doesn't thank his Lord.

Al-Khattaby (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “This tradition has two meanings:

The first: Whoever is used to denying the people's blessings, is used to denying Allah’s Blessings.

The second: Allah doesn't accept the gratitude of the slave for His Blessings on him, if the slave doesn't thank the people for their beneficence, as the 2 matters are related to each other."[44]

And the thanksgiving of the creature to the creature for any service he performed, occurs by rewarding him, praising him among people, or praying for him, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

من صنع إليكم معروفا فكافئوه فإن لم تجدوا ما تكافئونه به فادعوا له حتى تروا أنكم قد كافأتموه

"Requite him who does a favour to you, but if you are unable to requite him, go on praying for him till you are sure that you have requited him adequately."

And said:

من صنع إليه معروف فقال لفاعله : جزاك الله خيرا فقد أبلغ في الثناء

"He who is favoured by another and says to his benefactor: `Jazak-Allah khairan (may Allah reward you well)' indeed praised (the benefactor) satisfactorily."

And the thanksgiving to the creatures should occur even if the benefactor is a disbeliever, and undoing this is a major sin from the point of view of Imam Ahmad, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) mentioned that the recompense of the denial of the beneficence is dwelling in Hell, as he said:

يا معشر النساء تصدقن وأكثرن من الاستغفار فإني رأيتكن أكثر أهل النار. قالت امرأة منهن : ما لنا أكثر أهل النار ؟ قال : تكثرن اللعن وتكفرن العشير

"O women folk! You should give charity and be diligent in seeking Allah’s forgiveness because I have seen (i.e., on the Night of the Ascension to the highest heavens) that most of the dwellers of the Hell are women.'' A woman amongst them said: "Why is it that the majority of the dwellers of Hell are women?'' The Prophet replied, "You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands."

                Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “This is the recompense of the denial of the blessing of the husband, which is a blessing of Allah in fact, then what about the recompense of the denial of the blessing of Allah Himself ?!"

                If the Muslim needs something from the others, he should ask for it using brief, good words, and if he gets what he wants, he'd praise Allah, thank the giver, and pray for him, and if not, he'd praise Allah, and excuse his brother.

                Muhammad bin Wasi', a pious scholar from Al-Basra, went to Qutaibah bin Muslim, and said to him:"I came to you asking for a need I have asked Allah for it before you, so, if you give it to me, I'll praise Allah and thank you, and if not, I'll praise Allah, and excuse you." So, he gave him his need.

                And another one said: “Surely, I came to you for a great need, as you're a generous Prince and a great man."

                And the thanksgiving to the creatures isn't for money only, but for any service, as answering a question, good intercession, and supplicating for one's brother in his absence.

 The difference between the Thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted, to the creatures and the thanksgiving of the creatures to Allah.

There's no comparison between the Thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted, to the creatures and the thanksgiving of the creatures to Allah, as the Thanksgiving of Allah is proportionate to His Majesty, Generosity, and Perfect Mercy which embraces all things, and these're some of the differences between them:

1-       Allah, the Exalted, thanks the slave for his beneficence to himself, while the slave thanks who gives him.

2-       The Thanksgiving of Allah is absolutely perfect, while the thanksgiving of the creatures is deficient, relative and not permanent.

3-       The creature gets a benefit from the thanksgiving of the commender to him, while Allah gets no benefit from the thanksgiving of the commender to Him, as He said:

 وَمَنْ شَكَرَ فَإِنَّمَا يَشْكُرُ لِنَفْسِهِ

"And whoever is grateful, truly, his gratitude is for (the good of) his ownself." (An-Naml: 40)

And the disbelief also has no effect on Him, as He's the Rich (Free of all wants), the Owner of all Praise, so, He said:

وَقَالَ مُوسَى إِنْ تَكْفُرُوا أَنْتُمْ وَمَنْ فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لَغَنِيٌّ حَمِيدٌ

"And Mûsa (Moses) said: "If you disbelieve, you and all on earth together, then verily! Allah is Rich (Free of all wants), Owner of all Praise." (Ibrahim: 8)

 The types of the creatures as regards the thanksgiving

There're 3 types as regards their adherence to the thanksgiving:

-          The commenders who perform the thanksgiving continuously.

-          The commenders who perform the thanksgiving rarely.

-          The noncommenders.

1-       The commenders who perform the thanksgiving continuously

They are a minority, we ask Allah to make us of them, and there're many citations in the Holy Qur'an which denote this meaning, such as His Saying:

(وَقَلِيلٌ مِنْ عِبَادِيَ الشَّكُورُ)

" But few of My slaves are grateful." (Saba': 13)

Yet, those people have the highest grade, and are promised by the increase and good reward, as He said:

وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكُمْ لَئِنْ شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ

" And (remember) when your Lord proclaimed: "If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings), If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings)" (Ibrahim: 7)

And said after He mentioned His Saving of Lut (Peace be upon him):

نِعْمَةً مِنْ عِنْدِنَا كَذَلِكَ نَجْزِي مَنْ شَكَرَ

" As a Favour from Us, thus do We reward him who gives thanks (by obeying Us)."(Al-Qamar: 35)

And said:

وَسَيَجْزِي اللَّهُ الشَّاكِرِينَ

"And Allah will give reward to those who are grateful." (Ale-Imran: 144)

And said:

وَسَنَجْزِي الشَّاكِرِينَ

"And We shall reward the grateful"(Ale-Imran: 145)

"And their being a minority denotes that they're the chosen slaves of Allah, the Exalted."[45]

And Imam Ahmad narrated that Omar bin Al-Khattab (May Allah be pleased with him) heard a man saying:"O  Allah! Make me of the minority." Omar said: “What is this?” he said:" Allah said:

(وَقَلِيلٌ مِنْ عِبَادِيَ الشَّكُورُ)

" But few of My slaves are grateful." (Saba': 13)"

2-       The commenders who perform the thanksgiving rarely.

They thank Allah, the Exalted, for short, spaced periods, and for only some of the blessings, as He said after mentioning some of the blessings:

قَلِيلًا مَا تَشْكُرُونَ

" Little thanks you give."(Al-Mulk: 23)

3-       The noncommenders.

This is the character of most of the people, as Allah, the Exalted, said in 3 verses in His Book:

وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَشْكُرُونَ

"yet most of mankind give no thanks."( Al-Baqarah: 243, Yusuf: 138, Ghafir:61)

And said in 2 verses:

وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَهُمْ لَا يَشْكُرُونَ

"yet most of them give no thanks."(Yunus: 60, An-Naml:73)

And said:

وَلَا تَجِدُ أَكْثَرَهُمْ شَاكِرِينَ

"and You will not find most of them as thankful ones (i.e. they will not be dutiful to You)." (Al-A'raf: 17)

And this type of people are the most hated creatures to Allah, the Exalted, as He divided the creatures into grateful and ungrateful, as He said:

إِنَّا هَدَيْنَاهُ السَّبِيلَ إِمَّا شَاكِرًا وَإِمَّا كَفُورًا

"Verily, We showed him the way, whether he be grateful or ungrateful." (Al-Insan: 3)

And the most beloved things to Him are the gratefulness and its doers, and vice versa, as He said:

 (وَاشْكُرُوا لِي وَلَا تَكْفُرُونِ)

"and be grateful to Me (for My countless Favours on you) and never be ungrateful to Me."( Al-Baqarah: 152)

And this denial of those people may be due to their ignorance of the value of the blessing or the grade of its Giver, or their disbelief in Allah, we seek refuge with Allah, as He said:

فَأَبَى أَكْثَرُ النَّاسِ إِلَّا كُفُورًا

"but most mankind refuse (the truth and accept nothing) but disbelief."( Al-Isra':89)

And this description of the state of people makes us feel a strong heartbreak for the slaves who deny the blessing of Allah, or disbelieve in Him.

 The punishment of the dereliction in performing the thanksgiving

As we mentioned before, the thanksgiving to the Giver (I honor Him from all unsuitable things ascribed to Him) is a mandatory duty on every slave, and the dereliction in performing it leads to many forms of punishment, such as:

1-       The decrease of the faith:

As the thanksgiving forms half of the faith as we mentioned before, so, decreasing the thanksgiving decreases the faith, and the slave is described as ungrateful, as Sulaiman (Peace be upon him) when Allah bestowed on him, said:

هَذَا مِنْ فَضْلِ رَبِّي لِيَبْلُوَنِي أَأَشْكُرُ أَمْ أَكْفُرُ

"This is by the Grace of my Lord to test me whether I am grateful or ungrateful!" (An-Naml: 40)

While stopping the thanksgiving may lead to the actual disbelief.

2-       Vanishing of the blessings and affliction with the punishment:

The punishment may occur during this worldy life or in the Hereafter or Allah may forgive him if he died as Muslim, if He wills, and how often a country was destroyed when its people denied Allah’s Blessings, as He said:

وَضَرَبَ اللَّهُ مَثَلًا قَرْيَةً كَانَتْ آمِنَةً مُطْمَئِنَّةً يَأْتِيهَا رِزْقُهَا رَغَدًا مِنْ كُلِّ مَكَانٍ فَكَفَرَتْ بِأَنْعُمِ اللَّهِ فَأَذَاقَهَا اللَّهُ لِبَاسَ الْجُوعِ وَالْخَوْفِ بِمَا كَانُوا يَصْنَعُونَ

"And Allah puts forward the example of a township (Makkah), that dwelt secure and well content; its provision coming to it in abundance from every place, but it (its people) denied the Favours of Allah (with ungratefulness). So Allah made it taste the extreme of hunger (famine) and fear, because of that (evil, i.e. denying Prophet Muhammad which they (its people) used to do." (An-Nahl: 112)

And He said:

لَقَدْ كَانَ لِسَبَإٍ فِي مَسْكَنِهِمْ آيَةٌ جَنَّتَانِ عَنْ يَمِينٍ وَشِمَالٍ كُلُوا مِنْ رِزْقِ رَبِّكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لَهُ بَلْدَةٌ طَيِّبَةٌ وَرَبٌّ غَفُورٌ (15) فَأَعْرَضُوا فَأَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ سَيْلَ الْعَرِمِ وَبَدَّلْنَاهُمْ بِجَنَّتَيْهِمْ جَنَّتَيْنِ ذَوَاتَيْ أُكُلٍ خَمْطٍ وَأَثْلٍ وَشَيْءٍ مِنْ سِدْرٍ قَلِيلٍ (16) ذَلِكَ جَزَيْنَاهُمْ بِمَا كَفَرُوا وَهَلْ نُجَازِي إِلَّا الْكَفُورَ

"Indeed there was for Saba' (Sheba) a sign in their dwelling place, - two gardens on the right hand and on the left (and it was said to them) "Eat of the provision of your Lord, and be grateful to Him, a fair land and an Oft­Forgiving Lord. 16. But they turned away (from the obedience of Allah), so We sent against them Sail Al­'Arim (flood released from the dam), and We converted their two gardens into gardens producing bitter bad fruit, and tamarisks, and some few lote­trees.17. Like this We requited them because they were ungrateful disbelievers. And never do We requit in such a way except those who are ungrateful, (disbelievers)."(Saba': 15-17)

A secure, rich, and well content township used the blessings in disobeying Allah, and didn't thank Him for them. Nay, it denied His Favours, so, He made it taste the extreme of hunger and fear, as He's the Best of judges. Al-Hassan Al-Basry (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “Surely, if Allah isn't thanked, He changes the blessing into

a torment."[46]

                And these numerous blessings which we enjoy, such as the safety and richness, if we don't thank for them by the tongue, organs and heart, they may be removed from us, as the thanksgiving leads to persistence of the blessings.

3-       Persistence of the grace with removal of its benefit

The degree of decrease of the benefit of the graces is proportionate to the degree of decrease of the thanksgiving, as the recompense is proportionate to the deeds.

 Some of the methods of thanksgiving

There're many methods of thanksgiving, such as:

     1- Renewal of the thanksgiving to Allah, the Exalted, for the blessing and for enabling us to thank for it, as it was narrated that Dawûd (David) said: “O my Lord! How can I thank You, while my thanksgiving to You is a new Blessing of You on me?" He said: “Now, you thanked me, O Dawûd!"[47]

2- To believe that Allah, the Exalted, is the Giver, and know that none deserves to be worshipped, praised and thanked but Him.

3- To say: “All the praises and thanks be to Allah." as Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) said that the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

إن الله ليرضى عن العبد أن يأكل الأكلة فيحمده عليها أو يشرب الشربة فيحمده عليها

“Allah will be pleased with His slave who praises Him (i.e., says Al-hamdu lillah.i.e. All the praises and thanks be to Allah) when he eats and praises Him when he drinks."[48]

And it was narrated that one of our righteous ancestors said: “He whom Allah bestowed on many blessings, should increase his praising of Allah,   as the thanksgiving isn't accomplished but by praising the Giver by mentioning his beneficence"[49]

4- To learn the religious sciences derived from Allah’s Holy Book, Sunnah (the Prophet traditions) and the sayings of his companions and our righteous ancestors, as the ignorance may lead to denying the blessings, while the knowledge leads to thanksgiving.

5- The beneficence to the creatures: as the Blessings of Allah on you are a beneficence to you, and you should thank for them by the beneficence to the creatures, specially the poor, so, it was narrated that Idris (Peace be upon him) said: “The best way to thank Allah for His Blessings is the beneficence to His creatures."

6- Showing the blessings: the appearance of the signs of the blessings on the slave is a method of thanksgiving, as he who has concealed the blessing, has denied it, and he who has revealed the blessing, has thanked for it, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

إن الله يحب أن يرى أثر نعمته على عبده

“Allah loves to see the sign of His Bounties on His slave."

"But, he whom Allah bestowed on many blessings, should show only some signs of them, to avoid the evil of the enviers, as the Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said: “Surely, the effect of the envy by the eye is sure by Allah’s Will."[50]

7- The exchange of advice through enjoining the good and forbidding the evil with wisdom, fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better.

8- To help one another in virtue, righteousness and piety, as Allah, the Exalted, said:

  وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَى وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ

"Help you one another in Al­-Birr and At-­Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression"(Al-Ma'idah: 2), and to endure any harm related to that, as Allah, the Exalted, said:

وَالْعَصْرِ (1) إِنَّ الْإِنْسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ (2) إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ (3

"By Al-'Asr (the time). 2. Verily! Man is in loss, 3. Except those who believe (in Islâmic Monotheism) and do righteous good deeds, and recommend one another to the truth (i.e. order one another to perform all kinds of good deeds (Al-Ma'rûf)which Allah has ordained, and abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds (Al-Munkar)which Allah has forbidden), and recommend one another to patience (for the sufferings, harms, and injuries which one may encounter in Allah’s Cause during preaching His religion of Islâmic Monotheism or Jihâd, etc.)."( Al-'Asr)

9- To increase the good deeds, and avoid the forbidden things, as Allah, the Exalted, said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّى يُغَيِّرُوا مَا بِأَنْفُسِهِمْ

"Verily! Allah will not change the good condition of a people as long as they do not change their state of goodness themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allah)."( Ar-Ra'd: 11)

 The grateful, rich slave and the patient, poor one

The patience and gratitude are great forms of worship, the slave can't dispense with them at all, and the scholars have different opinions as regards which one of them is better, as Ibn Al-Gawzy said: “There’re 3 opinions:- The patience is better.

- The gratitude is better.

- They're equal.

And one of the best sayings, as regards this topic, is what Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said in his valuable book " Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, P: 124-126, as he said: “Verily, the slave can't dispense with the patience and gratitude, whether he's rich or poor, healthy or ill,… and the right opinion, as regards the topic of which one is better: The grateful, rich slave or the patient, poor one, is to say that the better one of them is the more pious, and presumably if they're equal as regards the piety, they're equal, as Allah (Exalted is He) doesn't prefer someone to another by the richness or poverty, but He prefers by the piety, as He said:"

إِنَّ أَكْرَمَكُمْ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ أَتْقَاكُمْ

"Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa [i.e. one of the Muttaqûn (pious)"( Al-Hujuraat: 13)

And the piety has 2 bases: The patience and gratitude, and both of the poor and the rich are in need for them, so, the better one of them is the more interested in performing the obligatory and praiseworthy deeds, as the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said that Allah, the Exalted, has said:

وما تقرب إلي عبدي بشيء أحب إلي مما افترضت عليه . وما يزال عبدي يتقرب إلي بالنوافل حتى أحبه

"And the most beloved thing with which My slave comes nearer to Me is what I have enjoined upon him; and My slave keeps on coming closer to Me through performing Nawafil (doing extra deeds besides what is obligatory) till I love him."[51]

If it's said that the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

يدخل الفقراء الجنة قبل الأغنياء بخمسمائة عام

"The poor will enter Paradise five hundred years before the rich."[52]

We say that this doesn't denote that they're better than the rich as regards the grade, even if they're the preceding, as the just governer may be delayed for displaying his deeds, but when he enters Paradise, he may be in a higher grade."

 Then, on that Day, you shall be asked about the delight

This is a verse of Surat At-Takaathur, and it denotes that no one Allah has bestowed on him a blessing but He'll ask him whether he has preserved or wasted it.

Makhool (May Allah have mercy on him) was asked about Allah’s Saying:

ثُمَّ لَتُسْأَلُنَّ يَوْمَئِذٍ عَنِ النَّعِيم

“Then, on that Day, you shall be asked about the delight (you indulged in, in this world)!"( At-Takaathur: 8), he said:" The delight is the cold drink, shady houses, full bellies, good appearance, and calm sleep."[53]

And Mugahid (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “It’s every delight in this worldy life.", and Ibn Abbas (May Allah be pleased with them) said:" It's the healthy bodies, ears, and eyes."

And to know the value of the blessing given to you, reflect on this tradition, and compare your state with the state of who were mentioned in it, as Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:

خرج رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم ذات يوم أو ليلة فإذا بأبي بكر وعمر رضي الله عنهما فقال : [ ما أخرجكما من بيوتكما هذه الساعة ؟ ] قالا : الجوع يا رسول الله . قال : [ وأنا والذي نفسي بيده لأخرجني الذي أخرجكما قوما ] فقاما معه فأتى رجلا من الأنصار فإذا هو ليس في بيته . فلما رأته المرأة قالت : مرحبا وأهلا . فقال لها رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم : [ أين فلان ؟ ] قالت : ذهب يستعذب لنا الماء . إذ جاء الأنصاري فنظر إلى رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم وصاحبيه ثم قال : الحمد لله ما أحد اليوم أكرم أضيافا مني . فانطلق فجاءهم بعذق فيه بسر وتمر ورطب فقال : كلوا . وأخذ المدية فقال له رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم : [ إياك والحلوب ] فذبح لهم فأكلوا من الشاة ومن ذلك العذق وشربوا . فلما أن شبعوا ورووا قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم لأبي بكر وعمر رضي الله عنهما : ( والذي نفسي بيده لتسألن عن هذا النعيم يوم القيامة أخرجكم من بيوتكم الجوع ثم لم ترجعوا حتى أصابكم هذا النعيم)

“The Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) went out (of his house) one day, or one night, and there he met Abu Bakr and `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) also. He (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said, "What made you leave your houses at this hour?'' They said, "It is hunger, O Messenger of Allah.'' He said, "By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, what made you leave, made me also leave, so come along!'' And he went along with them to a man from

Al-Ansar, but they did not find him in his house. When the wife of that man saw the Prophet, she said, "You are most welcome.'' the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said to her, "Where is so-and-so?'' She said, "He went to fetch some fresh water for us.'' In the meantime, the Ansari came back, saw the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) and his two companions and said: "Praise be to Allah, today no one has more honourable guests than I.'' He then went out and brought them a bunch of date fruit, having dates, some still green, some ripe, and some fully ripe, and requested them to eat from it. He then took his knife (to slaughter a sheep). the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said to him, "Do not kill a milch sheep.'' So he slaughtered a sheep for them. After they had eaten and drunk to their fill, the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said to Abu Bakr and `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them), "By Him in Whose Hand my soul is, you will certainly be questioned about this treat on the Day of Resurrection. Hunger brought you out of your homes, and you do not return to your homes till you have been blessed with this treat.''[54]

Allah is the Greatest! They'll be questioned about this treat which they rarely found, as Ai'shah (May Allah be pleased with her) said to Urwah (May Allah have mercy on him): " I used to see the new moon, then the new moon, then the new moon, i.e., three moons in two months, and a fire was not kindled in the house of the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him)." `Urwah said, "O my aunt, what were your means of sustenance?'' She said; "Dates and water."[55]

And it was narrated that the Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) used to tie a stone on his belly due to hunger, while we're indulging in the treat, so, what about the questioning of us?

 The types of the blessings

They can be classified into 3 types:

1-       General blessings.

2-       Quite general blessings.

3-       Special blessings.

1-       General blessings.

These blessings' benefits affect all the creatures: believers or disbelievers, and jinns or men, such as what Allah, the Exalted, mentioned as He said:

واللَّهُ جَعَلَ لَكُمُ الْأَرْضَ بِسَاطًا (19) لِتَسْلُكُوا مِنْهَا سُبُلًا فِجَاجًا

"And Allah has made for you the earth wide spread (an expanse). 20. That you may go about therein in broad roads."(Nuh: 19-20)

And said:

أَلَمْ نَجْعَلِ الْأَرْضَ مِهَادًا (6) وَالْجِبَالَ أَوْتَادًا (7) وَخَلَقْنَاكُمْ أَزْوَاجًا (8) وَجَعَلْنَا نَوْمَكُمْ سُبَاتًا (9) وَجَعَلْنَا اللَّيْلَ لِبَاسًا (10) وَجَعَلْنَا النَّهَارَ مَعَاشًا (11) وَبَنَيْنَا فَوْقَكُمْ سَبْعًا شِدَادًا (12) وَجَعَلْنَا سِرَاجًا وَهَّاجًا (13) وَأَنْزَلْنَا مِنَ الْمُعْصِرَاتِ مَاءً ثَجَّاجًا (14) لِنُخْرِجَ بِهِ حَبًّا وَنَبَاتًا (15) وَجَنَّاتٍ أَلْفَافًا (16

"Have We not made the earth as a bed, 7. And the mountains as pegs? 8. And We have created you in pairs (male and female, tall and short, good and bad, etc.). 9. And have made your sleep as a thing for rest. 10. And have made the night as a covering (through its darkness), 11. And have made the day for livelihood.12. And We have built above you seven strong (heavens), 13. And have made (therein) a shinning lamp (sun).14. And have sent down from the rainy clouds abundant water.15. That We may produce therewith corn and vegetations, 16. And gardens of thick growth."(An-Naba': 6-16)

And said:

قُلْ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْكُمُ اللَّيْلَ سَرْمَدًا إِلَى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَنْ إِلَهٌ غَيْرُ اللَّهِ يَأْتِيكُمْ بِضِيَاءٍ أَفَلَا تَسْمَعُونَ

"Say (O Muhammad ): "Tell me! If Allah made night continuous for you till the Day of Resurrection, who is an ilâh (a god) besides Allah who could bring you light? Will you not then hear?"( Al-Qasas: 71)

As if the darkness is continuous, we will be anxious, and partially deprived of the blessing of vision and color discrimination. On the contrary, if the light is continuous, we will be anxious, may be mad, and there'll be a great disturbance on the earth, as He said:

 قُلْ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْكُمُ النَّهَارَ سَرْمَدًا إِلَى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَنْ إِلَهٌ غَيْرُ اللَّهِ يَأْتِيكُمْ بِلَيْلٍ تَسْكُنُونَ فِيهِ أَفَلَا تُبْصِرُونَ (72) وَمِنْ رَحْمَتِهِ جَعَلَ لَكُمُ اللَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَارَ لِتَسْكُنُوا فِيهِ وَلِتَبْتَغُوا مِنْ فَضْلِهِ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

" Say (O Muhammad ): "Tell me! If Allah made day continuous for you till the Day of Resurrection, who is an ilâh (a god) besides Allah who could bring you night wherein you rest? Will you not then see? (72) It is out of His Mercy that He has put for you night and day, that you may rest therein (i.e. during the night) and that you may seek of His Bounty (i.e. during the day), and in order that you may be grateful."( Al-Qasas: 72 - 73)

-          And one of these blessings is the sun which lies at a certain distance from the earth, and if it becomes nearer, it may burn the plants, and the evaporation of the seas may occur. On the contrary, if it becomes more distant, the weather'll be very cold, and it may cause harm to the creatures, so, I honor Allah from all unsuitable things ascribed to Him, as He is the all-Wise.

-          And the mountains which act as pegs to stabilise the earth.

-          And the moon with its beautiful light and its effect on the seas.

-          And the different types of plants and fruits which are eaten by the humans and animals.

-          And the trees with its beautiful appearance and its benefits.

-          And the sea and its treasures as from it we eat fresh tender fish, derive the ornaments of pearl and coral, and you see the ships cleaving it as they sail through it carrying the humans and goods to very far places.

You should reflect on what around you, and say:

لَوْ كَانَ فِيهِمَا آلِهَةٌ إِلَّا اللَّهُ لَفَسَدَتَا

" Had there been therein (in the heavens and the earth) gods besides Allah, then verily both would have been ruined." (Al-Anbiyah': 22)

Glorified be Allah, Who has created everything, and then proportioned it.

2-       Quite general blessings.

These blessings' benefits may affect a certain nation or country, such as:

-          The blessing of guidance to Islam: Allah has chosen and guided you to the right religion, while He misleaded others, and to know the value of this blessing, imagine yourself in the Hereafter seeing the disbelievers while they cry saying:

رَبَّنَا أَخْرِجْنَا مِنْهَا فَإِنْ عُدْنَا فَإِنَّا ظَالِمُونَ

"Our Lord! Bring us out of this; if ever we return (to evil), then indeed we shall be Zâlimûn: (polytheists, oppressors, unjust, and wrong-doers, etc.)."(Al-Mu'minun: 107), what will be your feeling at that moment?

I'm sure you'll say:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي هَدَانَا لِهَذَا وَمَا كُنَّا لِنَهْتَدِيَ لَوْلَا أَنْ هَدَانَا اللَّهُ

"All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has guided us to this, never could we have found guidance, were it not that Allah had guided us!" (Al-A'raf: 43)

Bakr bin Abd Allah Al-Muzani (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “Whoever is a healthy Muslim, has been given the best blessing of the worldy life and the Hereafter, as the best blessing of the worldy life is the health, and the best blessing of the Hereafter is Islam."

And Abd Al-Malik bin Marwan (May Allah have mercy on him) said: “One of the best sayings is to say: All the praises and thanks be to Allah, Who has guided us to Islam."

-The blessing of making this country an Islamic country enjoying security, while men are being snatched away from all around it.

3-       Special blessings.

These blessings lies inside the human body, and includes many astonishing secrets, so, Allah specially mentioned them in His Saying:

 وَفِي الْأَرْضِ آيَاتٌ لِلْمُوقِنِينَ (20) وَفِي أَنْفُسِكُمْ أَفَلَا تُبْصِرُونَ (21

"And on the earth are signs for those who have Faith with certainty, 21. And also in your ownselves. Will you not then see?"(Adh-Dhariyat: 20-21)

And said:

سَنُرِيهِمْ آيَاتِنَا فِي الْآفَاقِ وَفِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَهُمْ أَنَّهُ الْحَقُّ

" We will show them Our Signs in the universe, and in their ownselves, until it becomes manifest to them that this (the Qur'ân) is the truth."

( Fussilat: 53)

So, if you reflect on yourself, you'll find many surprising blessings, such as:

-          The perfect creation: as Allah gave you a beautiful appearance, a thinking mind, and a fluent tongue which expresses what you see by your eyes, and what you hear by your ears. Allah, the Exalted, said:

يَا أَيُّهَا الْإِنْسَانُ مَا غَرَّكَ بِرَبِّكَ الْكَرِيمِ (6) الَّذِي خَلَقَكَ فَسَوَّاكَ فَعَدَلَكَ (7) فِي أَيِّ صُورَةٍ مَا شَاءَ رَكَّبَكَ "O man! What has made you careless concerning your Lord, the Most Generous? 7. Who created you, fashioned you perfectly, and gave you due proportion; 8. In whatever form He willed, He put you together."( Al-Infitaar: 6-8)

And said:

وَاللَّهُ أَخْرَجَكُمْ مِنْ بُطُونِ أُمَّهَاتِكُمْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَ شَيْئًا وَجَعَلَ لَكُمُ السَّمْعَ وَالْأَبْصَارَ وَالْأَفْئِدَةَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

" And Allah has brought you out from the wombs of your mothers while you know nothing. And He gave you hearing, sight, and hearts that you might give thanks (to Allah)."( An-Nahl: 78)

And said:

 ألَمْ نَجْعَلْ لَهُ عَيْنَيْنِ (8) وَلِسَانًا وَشَفَتَيْنِ (9) وَهَدَيْنَاهُ النَّجْدَيْنِ (10

"Have We not made for him a pair of eyes? 9. And a tongue and a pair of lips? 10. And shown him the two ways (good and evil)?"( Al-Balad: 8-10)

-          The limbs: which moves the body and ends by the fingers which are perfectly arranged, with flexible joits and beautiful nails protecting the underlying flesh.

-          The head: which contains the brain, the master of the body, as it controls the functions of the body, so, Allah, the Exalted, made it the highest organ in the body, so that the person can move it easily to avoid any danger, and He protected it by the hair, thick skin, bony skull, and the meanings with the cereprospinal fluid inside them, so, reflect on this perfect protection supplied by the Creator, Exalted is He and all the praises and thanks be to Him.

-          And if we reflect on the blessings as regards the time and age group, we'll find surprising stages with many blessings related to each stage, beginning from the fetal stage to infancy to childhood to youth stage to manhood to geriatric stage, and each stage of these stages has its characteristic blessings, which no one can count but the Creator, Exalted is He.

 Fine blessings

Many people think that the blessings consist of the apparent blessings only, as what we mentioned before, but there're fine blessings which are not noticed but by those who have been given the foresight.

These're some of these blessings:

- Allah, the Exalted, has bestowed on you Muslim parents teaching you the piety, while these're some people who have embraced Islam, but his parents are disbelievers, so reflect on the heartbreak he feels due to seeing his parents in this state.

- Shoraih (May Allah have mercy on him) said:"The slave has 3 blessings in any calamity afflicting him:- It didn't affect his religion, wasn't more stressful, and its occurrence is inevitable and it occurred and passed, so All the praises and thanks be to Allah.

- He who wants to know the value of the blessing of health, should visit the hospitals to recognise the suffering of the diseased persons crying due to the pain they feel, the deaf and blind persons, and the diseased persons who hope for a short period of sleep.

- If a single organ is lost, the millions can't replace it, a man came to Yunus bin Obaid (May Allah have mercy on him) complaining of poverty, Yunus said to him: “Will you be happy if you have 100000 Dirham, but you're blind?", he said: “No.", Yunus said to him: “Will you be happy if you have 100000 Dirham, but you're paralysed?", he said: “No.", Yunus said to him: “Will you be happy if you have 100000 Dirham, but you're deaf?", he said: “No.", Yunus said to him: “I think that you have 300000 Dirham, while you're complaining of poverty."

And Al-Fudail bin I'ad (May Allah have mercy on him) read Allah’s Saying:  

ألَمْ نَجْعَلْ لَهُ عَيْنَيْنِ (8) وَلِسَانًا وَشَفَتَيْنِ (9)

"Have We not made for him a pair of eyes? 9. And a tongue and a pair of lips?"( Al-Balad: 8-9), then he wept and said: “Didd you thank Allah, the Exalted, for giving you two eyes to see by them? Did you thank Allah, the Exalted, for giving you a tongue and two lips to talk using them?"[56]

- The Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

من أصبح منكم آمنا في سربه معافى في جسده عنده قوت يومه فكأنما حيزت له الدنيا بحذافيرها

"Whosoever begins the day feeling family security and good health; and possessing provision for his day, is as if he possesed the whole world."[57]

So, the blessing of security is one of the greatest blessings, as it leads to increasing the productivity on the individual and national levels.

It also leads to attracting the investors to invest their capital in the secure countries, on the contrary to nonsecure countries.

- The Prophet (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said:

كل سلامى من الناس عليه صدقة كل يوم تطلع فيه الشمس : يعدل بين الاثنين صدقة وتعين الرجل في دابته فتحمله عليها أو ترفع له عليها متاعه صدقة والكلمة الطيبة صدقة وبكل خطوة تمشيها إلى الصلاة صدقة وتميط الأذى عن الطريق صدقة

"Every day the sun rises a charity (Sadaqah) is due on every bone of the person: administering justice between two men is a charity; assisting a man to mount his beast, or helping him load his luggage on it is a charity; a good speech is a charity; every step that you take (towards the mosque) for Salat (prayer) is a charity and removing harmful things from the road is a charity"

Ibn Ragab (May Allah have mercy on him):"This tradition means that the construction of these bones is one of the greatest Blessings of Allah on the slave, so, every bone needs to be thanked for through giving a charity."[58]

But the slave maybe unable to present all these charities, so, Allah, the Generous, opened the gates to the good for him, and made every deed of the mentioned deeds a charity.

 What should we do?

After we have known the Blessings of Allah on us, we should do our best to thank Him by the heart, tongue, and organs

 Conclusion

O my Muslim brother! This was a rapid research about this topic, as we talked about the core, types and advantage of thanksgiving, the factors leading to the thanksgiving, the difference between the Thanksgiving of Allah, the Exalted, to the creatures and the thanksgiving of the creatures to Allah, the types of the creatures as regards the thanksgiving, the punishment of the dereliction in performing the thanksgiving, and the types of the blessings.

I ask Allah, the Exalted, to make us of those who are patient when they are exposed to a calamity and thankful when they are bestowed on, He is All-Hearer, Responsive.

And I ask Him help us to thank Him for His Blessings, and use them in obeying Him and helping His slaves.

And the guidance is from Allah, and may Allah exalt the mention of our Prophet Muhammad, all his household and companions.

 Asking for forgiveness

"O Allah! I seek Your Forgiveness for what I repented to You from, then I returned to it. And I seek Your Forgiveness for what I promised You to do, then I didn't fulfill it. And I seek Your Forgiveness for what I pretended that I seeked Your Face while doing it, but my heart was affected by what You know."[59]



[1] Sheikh Imam Ibn El-Qayyim (May Allah have mercy on him) said in his valuable book " Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, P: 163": (Al-Hassan Al-Basry was used to say at the beginning of his speech: All the praises and thanks be to Allah. O Allah! All the praises and thanks be to You for……….etc)

[2] Ash-Shawkany (May Allah have mercy on him) in Fath Elkadeer (3/98) and As-Syiouty in Ad-Dorr Almanthour (5/7) said: "Ibn Abi Hatem narrated that Ar-Rabie said as regards Allah’s Saying [And (remember) when your Lord proclaimed: "If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more]: Musa (Peace be upon him) said that his Lord said that if they thank for the blessing, He will increase His Grace on them, give them victory over their enemies and increase their obedience to Him.  

[3] Look: Tahdheeb Madareg As-Salikeen (2/609)

[4] So Allah combines between the thanksgiving and the denial as it is its opposite, as in His Saying:

وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكُمْ لَئِنْ شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ وَلَئِنْ كَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِي لَشَدِيدٌ

"And (remember) when your Lord proclaimed: "If you give thanks (by accepting Faith and worshipping none but Allah), I will give you more (of My Blessings), but if you are thankless (i.e. disbelievers), verily! My Punishment is indeed severe." (Ibrahim: 7)

[5] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 1/397

[6] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 1/398

[7] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/612

[8] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/612

[9] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 1/398

[10] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/611

[11] Al-Hekam Al-Jami'ah by Abd Allah bin zaid Al Mahmood, 505-512

[12] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 88

[13] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 96

[14] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 97

[15] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 96

[16] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 96

[17] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 3092, Muslim, 287, on the authority of  Abu Hurairah.

[18] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 1062, Muslim, 5044

[19] Narrated  by Abu Dawud, 1301, An-Nasa'I, 1286

[20] (Ya-Sin:59)

[21] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 9/343

[22] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 98

[23] Ad-Dorr Almanthour (5/8)

[24] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/216

[25] Ad-Dorr Almanthour (1/374)

[26] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 3005, Muslim, 5050, on the authority of  Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) that he said: The Messenger of Allah (May Allah exalt his mention, and peace be upon him) said, " Allah, the Exalted, has said: `I have prepared for my righteous slaves what no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and the mind of no man has conceived.'

If you wish, recite:

`No person knows what is kept hidden for them of joy as a reward for what they used to do.' '' (32:17)

[27] Uddat As-Sabirin wa Dhakhirat Ash-Shakirin, 95-96

[28] Narrated  by Ahmad and Muslim.

[29] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 9/379

[30] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/611

[31] Narrated  by At-Tirmidhi, 1957, and Abu Dawud, 4179.

[32] Narrated  by Ahmad, 18544.

[33] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/611

[34] Narrated  by  At-Tirmidhi, 2744

[35] Narrated  by  At-Tirmidhi, 2268 , Ibn Majah, 4131.

[36] Narrated  by Ahmad, 17096.

[37] Narrated  by  Muslim, 5264

[38] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/610

[39] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari and Muslim on the authority of  Abu Hurairah.

[40] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 615, Muslim, 661, on the authority of  Abu Hurairah.

[41] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 6956, Muslim, 284.

[42] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari, 3931

[43] Narrated by At-Tirmidhi, 1877, on the authority of  Abu Hurairah.

[44] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, 1/398

[45] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/610

[46] Ad-Dorr Almanthour (1/369)

[47] "Al-Jami' Leahkam Al-Quran" by Al-Qurtoby, (Ibrahim: 34)

[48] Narrated  by  Muslim

[49] Madareg As-Salikeen, 2/61

[50] "Said Al-Khatir" by Ibn Al-Gawzy, 178

[51] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari.

[52] Narrated  by At-Tirmidhi

[53] Tafseer Ibn Katheer, Surat At-Takaathur

[54] Narrated  by  Muslim

[55] Narrated  by Al-Bukhari and Muslim.

[56] Jami' Al-Oloom wa Al-Hekam, 2/74-79

[57] Narrated  by At-Tirmidhi, 34

[58] Jami' Al-Oloom wa Al-Hekam, 2/74-79

[59] (Al-Werd Al-Musaffa Al-Mukhtar) by the King Abdulazeez bin al Sa’ud (May Allah have mercy on him)