Dhikr – the remembrance of Allah (swt) through supplications, is one of the greatest gifts that Allah (swt) has bestowed upon us as Muslims. Unfortunately, in our daily grind, dhikr is also one of the acts of worship that are easily neglected.
Most times, many people barely get by with compulsory acts of worship like salah, so their minds are not even present enough to do dhikr.
So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me. (Qur’an 2:152)
The same way that compulsory acts of worship should be fulfilled by us, so also is the remembrance of our Lord. And how best can we do this? By trying to internalize some dhikr so much that they become second nature to us as wearing our clothes or eating.
The compilation of dhikr here are short and light on the tongue, but with some immense rewards that Allah (swt) has promised us. Let’s do our best to learn them, and more importantly, use them every day.
1. Subhâna l-lâhi wa bi-hamdihi.
سُبْحَانَ اللهِ وَبِحَمْدِهِ
“How perfect Allah is and I praise Him.”
In a hadith narrated by Abu Huraira, the holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Whoever says: Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi (Glory and praise are to Allah) one hundred times, his sins will be forgiven even if they were like the foam of the sea.” (Sunan Ibn Majah)
In another related narration by a companion called Jabir, the Prophet (saw) once again said that “For him who says: ‘Subhan-Allahi wa bi hamdihi (Allah is free from imperfection, and I begin with praising Him, and to Him),’ a palm-tree will be planted in Jannah.” (Riyad as-Salihin)
Just look at the immense rewards of forgiveness and admission into Jannah for a phrase that is so light on the tongue that one can probably say it dozens of times in a minute.
2. SubhanAllah, wal-hamdulilah, wa la illaha ill-Allah, wa Allahu Akbar, wa la hawla wa la quwwata illa Billahil-aliy al-azim
سُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ وَلاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ وَاللَّهُ أَكْبَرُ وَلاَ حَوْلَ وَلاَ قُوَّةَ إِلاَّ بِاللَّهِ
“Glory be to Allah, praise be to Allah, there is none worthy of worship except Allah, Allah is Most Great, and there is no power and no strength except with Allah the Exalted and Magnificent”.
A man came to the Prophet (saw) and asked him to teach him something that he can say instead of reading the Qur’an, and this was the dhikr that the holy Prophet (saw) taught him.
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3. Lâ ilâha illâ l-lâhu, wahdahu lâ sharîka lahu, lahu-l-mulku wa lahu-l-hamdu, wa huwa calâ kulli shay’in qadîr.
لَا إِلهَ إِلَّا اللهُ وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ، لَهُ المُلْكُ وَلَهُ الحَمْدُ وهُوَ عَلى كُلِّ شَيءٍ قَديرٌ
“None has the right to be worshipped except Allah, alone, without a partner. To Him belongs all sovereignty and praise and He is over all things omnipotent.”
4. “Lā ilāha illallāh” and “Al-ḥamdulillāh”
لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ وَ الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ
In another hadith narrated by Jabir, the holy Prophet (saw) said that “The best remembrance is: ‘there is none worthy of worship except Allah (Lā ilāha illallāh)’ and the best supplication is: ‘All praise is due to Allah (Al-ḥamdulillāh).’” (at-Tirmidhi)
5. “Lā ilāha illā anta subḥānaka innī kuntu minaẓ-ẓālimīn”
لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ
“There is none worthy of worship except You, Glory to You, Indeed, I have been of the transgressors”.
This was indeed the dhikr of Prophet Yunus (as) when he was in the belly of the fish, and the holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) has said that any Muslim who supplicates with this dhikr will have his dua accepted. (at-Tirmidhi)
6. “Subḥān Allāh, Al-ḥamdulillāh, Lā ilāha illallāh, Allāhu akbar”
سُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ وَلاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ وَاللَّهُ أَكْبَرُ
‘Glory is to Allah (Subḥān Allāh).’ ‘All praise is due to Allah (Al-ḥamdulillāh),’ ‘None has the right to be worshipped by Allah (Lā ilāha illallāh),’ and ‘Allah is the greatest (Allāhu akbar)’
The holy Prophet (saw) said that this phrase is more beloved to him than anything the sun has risen over. So much so that this is the phrase that he taught his daughter, Faatimah, when she came to him for help in employing the services of a person to assist her with the housework. (at-Tirmidhi)
7. “Lâ hawla wa lâ quwwata illâ bi-l-lâhi.”
وَلاَ حَوْلَ وَلاَ قُوَّةَ إِلاَّ بِاللَّهِ
“There is no might nor power except with Allah.”
The reward of this dhikr is to have your sins pardoned, even if they are like foam on a sea.
8. “Subhâna l-lâhi wa bi-hamdihi, adada khaqihi, wa ridâ nafsihi, wa zinata carshihi, wa midâda kalimâtihi.”
سُبْحـانَ اللهِ وَبِحَمْـدِهِ عَدَدَ خَلْـقِه ، وَرِضـا نَفْسِـه ، وَزِنَـةَ عَـرْشِـه ، وَمِـدادَ كَلِمـاتِـه
“How perfect Allah is and I praise Him by the number of His creation and His pleasure, and by the weight of His throne, and the ink of His words.”
One thing that you will notice with all these dhikrs is that they glorify the supremacy of Allah (swt) and they affirm Him as our creator. Imagine if we spent more time during the day being aware of the supremacy of our creator and constantly remembering Him with these words.
Imagine how much closer we would move to our Lord, how conscious of Him we will be, when we consciously glorify every chance we get.
The Prophet (saw) said, “Allah says: ‘I am just as My slave thinks I am, (i.e. I am able to do for him what he thinks I can do for him) and I am with him if He remembers Me. If he remembers Me in himself, I too, remember him in Myself; and if he remembers Me in a group of people, I remember him in a group that is better than they; and if he comes one span nearer to Me, I go one cubit nearer to him; and if he comes one cubit nearer to Me, I go a distance of two outstretched arms nearer to him; and if he comes to Me walking, I go to him running.’” (Bukhari)
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