Al-Hafiz (The Ever-Preserving)
We remember the benefit of antiskid…
the benefit of speed brakes…
the benefit of protective airbags…
the benefit of seatbelts…
But we forget Allah!
Al-Hafiz (The Ever-Preserving)
If you feel that your life is in danger, or that disease threatens your precious health, or your son is away from you and you’re afraid for him from losing his way or being with bad company, or that the money you’ve collected is on the brink of loss and wastefulness, be sure that you are in a bad need to learn about this name of Allah—Al-Hafiz. You are also in need of renewing your belief with this great name, and the proper time has come to think deeply and meditate on it.
He is the only One to preserve your life, your health, your sons, your money, and everything in this life!
Heart, Feel at ease…
Sheikh Al-Saadi, may Allah have mercy on him, says: “The Ever-Preserving means that He has preserved what He has created, and His knowledge has encompassed what He brought into existence, and He preserves with care His believing servants from committing sins and falling into jeopardy, and He has mercy on them throughout the ups and downs.”
The ultimate protection, care, and security shall be for you when you come underneath His wing and His preservation.
He protects His slaves; this is why we always say: “O Lord, protect me from between my hands, from my back, from my right side, from my left side, and from above me, and I seek refuge in You to not be conquered from beneath me.”
If you entrust all of your six directions to Allah, and you plea with Him to surround you with a protective circle around all of your sides, then you will see that no one can give you that except Him!
He preserves your hearing and your sight. Therefore, we call Him in the morning and the evening, supplicating: “O Lord, grant me protection in my hearing. O Lord, grant me protection in my sight…”
Certainly you would lose the senses that enable you to comprehend this world if you were to lose the blessings of hearing and sight. You would live in dark isolation. Life would suffocate you with its deaf silence!
﴾Say, “Have you considered: if Allah should take away your hearing and your sight and set a seal upon your hearts, which deity other than Allah could bring them [back] to you?”﴿
The Ever-Preserving is the One who preserves your hearing, by which you hear the forbidden things, and if He wished, He would take it away in a glance.
The Ever-Preserving is the One who preserves your sight, by which you see the forbidden things, and if He wished, He would take it away in a glance.
He preserves your religion. This is why you supplicate in your prostration to Him: (O Turner of Hearts, make my heart steadfast in Your religion).
Roads of deviation!
If He did not make your heart steadfast on His religion, suspicions would tear you apart and your fantasies would take you captive!
Shockingly, there have been scholars who had spent their lives between books and ink, but Allah had not destined for their beliefs to be steadfast, so they disbelieved in the Exalted in the heavens, and some of them became innovators in the religion. And how small your knowledge is, yet you prostrate to Him? The Ever-Preserving will maintain your religion!
A scholar named “Abdullah Al-Kosayme” wrote a book called “The Conflict Between Islam and Idolatry” to defend Allah’s religion. It was said about this book, exaggeratedly, that the author paid the dowry of Paradise by it! He was also praised from the minbar of the Kaaba. Years later, the roads of deviation hit his heart—God forbid—and suspicions weaved around the core of his thoughts nets of skepticism! Consequently, the fundamental bases became assumptions, and the facts became opinions. Beneath all of these suspicions and ordeals and from the
mountains of deviation, the writer took his pen and wrote a book called “These are the Cuffs,” its content attacking Islam! He wrote: “The religion of Islam is cuffs, restrictions, and burdens!” We seek the refuge of Allah to not be humiliated like this!
The Ever-Preserving is the One who preserves your religion; it is not the knowledge in your head that preserves you! Don’t allow your head to become inflated because of your knowledge or because of your memorization of the Holy Qur’an or the Sunnah of the Prophet, peace be upon him. I swear by Allah that you will be astray if He does not preserve your religion!!
Mention for example “Balaam Bin Baorah.” Allah granted him understanding of His greatest name so that he could call on him at any time and He would answer his prayer. This name, however, did not preserve him from going astray and being among those who will be sent to Hell.
And we forget Allah!
He preserves your life. Therefore, we trust Him to keep our beloved people safe when we leave them, and we say, “I bid you farewell, trusting in Allah to protect you!” It is impossible for the deposits protected and watched by Allah to be lost.
Behind every accident, which a person survives, a protector rescued him from it. We remember the benefit of the antiskid, the benefit of speed brakes, the benefit of protective airbags, the benefit of seatbelts, but we forget Allah!
If the waves hit the ship aggressively, and the hearts reached the throats, who is going to protect the ship from being swallowed into the depths of the ocean?
I have seen a video of a ship, which was driven up and down by the rough waves. The spectacle of the passengers being pushed from one far corner to the other far corner was impressive. They did not have any power to rescue themselves. Even thinking became more difficult. The only thing that was possible for them was attempting to grab anything. And when the cameras zoomed out, I saw the ship like a tiny straw in the middle of mountain-like waves!
When the pilot of an airplane declares a flaw in the plane, those who were indulgent in deep thinking far away from Allah become so pious in a quick shift. All of the passengers seek the refuge of Allah and seek His forgiveness. They forget their wishes, dreams, pain, and ordeals except for death! It becomes the only matter in their minds!!
Who is the one by whom the airplane was fixed so it could land peacefully and those whose souls were about to meet death were able to escape?
I think back to an airplane I was aboard, when it faced severe bumps midflight. I realized in this moment how small the airplane was, how it was flying in the air above a vast desert. I felt more than terrified. How unaware I was during every flight I had taken of the frightening picture of this small object that moves in the air by Allah’s power!
He, Allah, is the one we call to rescue our ship
But when we arrive safely we abandon His worship
We ride the airplane with security and peace
We did not fall as we are in the hand of the Ever-Preserving
The Almighty says,
﴾ For him [i.e., each one] are successive [angels] before and behind who protect him by the decree of Allah...﴿
For your sake, The Ever-Preserving orders four angels to surround you so you are protected by his decree from what he did not prescribe for you.
How could He not be The Ever-Preserving and he entrusted this number of angels to block any shot not prescribed by Allah to injure you and any rock that the Almighty did not prescribe to end your life, and any mosquito that Allah did not wish to hurt your skin!
I watched, in a state of shock, the video of the assassination of Sheikh A’aidh Al Karani in the Philippines. The assassin shot the Sheikh with six shots from only one meter away, and there was no wall between the shots and the Sheikh. The assassin looked like a professional, and there was no resistance from the Sheikh or his companions… And the Sheikh survived all of these sinful attempts at his murder without any single injury!! On the other hand, I remember the far destined shot that killed the American President John Kennedy, while he was wandering by his car with his soldiers and guards!
Afterwards, the Sheikh announced that the miracle of his survival had happened because he was mentioning Allah and protecting himself by the prayers!
This incident is a lesson, or it is like a whole volume of a book about the name of the Ever-Preserving, “Al-Hafiz!”
Between the brackets…
Did you know that you are under His protection every moment?
Indeed, in every moment you are preserved a hundred times!!
At this moment, while you are reading this paragraph, He is preserving your heartbeat from ceasing, your arteries from closing, your brain from going insane, your kidneys from failing, your stomach from becoming punctured, your intestines from becoming inflamed, your organs from becoming paralyzed, your eyes from becoming blind, your hearing from being lost, your tongue from being mute… All this and much more He is preserving at this very second.
So think about how many times we should be saying, “Praise be to Allah” in just one second.
If you park your car in a dark place and you are afraid for it to be stolen, keep it in the hand of the Ever-Preserving. Certainly, He, the Exalted in heavens, is the caretaker of what you deposit.
If you are about to leave your home and you are afraid for your children, then say, “I bid you farewell, trusting in Allah to protect you.” You will return, God willing, to find them in the best shape, because he is Al-Hafiz!
If the living conditions force you to leave a precious item in a public or unsafe place, seek Him with your heart, and say, “O Lord, preserve it for me,” and be confident that the eye of Allah is watching it for you till you return.
Four friends fly to a place sixty kilometers from Tabuk called “Naema Reet.” At 9 A.M. they landed and continued walking on foot to a place that is called “Al-Shaq.” Al-Shaq is a huge crack in the Earth’s crust; landing on it is considered not only an adventure but also a great risk to one’s life!
They were tired, and their feet were chapped. They were extremely exhausted, and they were dying from thirst. In brief, they were about to be recorded among the dead!!
Their hearts were clinging to Allah. They were certain that there is no protector except Allah. One of them, according to the others, said that he insistently supplicated Allah when the thirst was so tough to the point that he wished he was dead. Surprisingly, in a place where the feet of human beings cannot step, he sees a bottle of water that was clean and in good shape. He did not become happy so much from finding the water in comparison to his friends, but instead he felt happy from feeling that Allah was with him in every single moment. He knew that Allah was the One who put that water bottle into existence in that moment so that He could rescue them from this fatal risk.
The water bottle became no more a symbol of surviving death, but rather a symbol of the preservation of the Ever-Preserving. Glory be to Him…
Before sunset they arrived at the roof with dirty faces, torn clothes, and blood dripping from their feet, but their belief and trust in Allah were like the mountains in the desert that were surrounding them!
Eyes were kept awake, whereas others were not.
In matters may be or maybe not.
Your Lord has supplied for your yesterday’s provision.
So, for tomorrow, you will be have your possessions.
Greater, more, and bigger
Al-Hafiz’s name consists a story with every one of His creatures. He doesn’t design His creation and then leave them, but instead He provides them with the weapons by which they can face the dangers of life. He gives each creature his own sword so that he can navigate the war of life.
He preserves some animals by their capacity to run rapidly such as deer and rabbits…
He also preserves other animals by horns by which they can open a hole in the belly of an enemy that attacks them, such as hippopotamuses and buffaloes…
He also keeps some animals protected with the size of their body, so they can attack their enemy using their huge bodies, such as elephants and bears…
Some animals are kept protected by the electrical weapon by which they can defend themselves if it is touched by any enemy, such as crampfish!
Furthermore, some living things are preserved by their ability to produce venom, such as snakes and scorpions!
He preserves the chameleon by making it able to change its color if needed in a time of danger!
He also protects some animals by flying, some by hiding, and some by climbing…
What we have discussed is just a slight mention of His preservation, and what humanity is unaware of is His Ever-Preserving power is greater, more, and bigger!
He defends you …
Defending believers is from the preserving ways of Allah:
﴾Indeed, Allah defends those who have believed. Indeed, Allah does not like everyone treacherous and ungrateful.﴿
Meditate on this: He is not supporting them against evil one time only, but He continuously supports them with power against evil! In this verse, there is an indication of how aggressively the believers will face multiple types of evil in its
various forms, but Allah is aware of the intention of their enemies so He beats them and prevents them from making any gains upon his beloved ones. In a Hadith Qudsi (divine hadith), the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “Verily Allah Ta’ala has said: ‘Whosoever shows enmity to a wali (friend/ally/supporter) of Mine, then I have declared war against him.’"
Imagine the war between an enemy to the call of belief, truth, and the correct religion and Allah! (1) Issued by Al-Bukhari in his book (105/8-6502)
Who is the triumphant? Who is the defeated? Or who is the humiliated? He is for the believers All-Preserving. He takes special care of them. With Him, there is love, care, and mercy. When the disbelievers of Quraish surrounded the cave in which there was two men—Muhammad, peace be upon him, and the Honest One Abu Bakr as-Siddiq—and the financial temptation was pushing them to murder the two patient men, in their hearts laid a hidden grudge and a hidden desire to gain fame by beating the most important character of that era… At that time, fear snuck into the heart of Abu Bakr, and his great companion, peace be upon him, looked at him with piety and said, “What do you think of two with whom Allah is the third?”
O Abu Bakr, do you think we are a mere two? Nay, we are three! At that time, the fears faded, the tensions were released, the obsessions melted. If Allah’s care surrounds you with its protective eye, don’t worry, And sleep, as all your fears turn into safety! Consider the believers of the cave who sought His refuge and asked Him for guidance. He guided them to a cave without a door, a cave accessible to human beings, living things, and beasts, but He chose to preserve them by one of His
soldiers—terror. No one approached the cave except that terror overtook his heart so that he could no longer approach the cave and instead tried to escape quickly in fear:
﴾…If you had looked at them, you would have turned from them in flight and been filled by them with terror.﴿
If you and I desire to throw something, we might throw a pen, a book, or a rock, but if Allah opts to throw something, He throws things that are more important, unexpected, and great. Glory to be to Allah who says:
﴾…I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieved.﴿
For His servants and true believers, He casts terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve so that they disperse into groups, fearing the believers who are supported by Allah!
He, the Exalted, protects you by the angels. Therefore, one who reads Ayat Al-Kursi before he sleeps, Allah employs for him an angel who preserves him from what Allah did not prescribe for him. What is there to fear if Allah is on your side? This name, Al-Hafiz, makes you want to breathe comfortably with confidence in the Ever-Living who does not die. Wander in the darkness, pass the valley of the beasts, take a risk in the crocodiles’ swamp, but Al-Hafiz (The Ever-Preserving) surrounds you with a beam of protection which turns all of these things into a mere trivial children’s game. Taking all available precautions is not against the abovementioned idea. We are ordered to do this, and our Prophet, peace be upon him, took precautions.
Take all of your worldly interests and leave my heart free, unrestrained, and strange Certainly, I am of the richest fortune even if you left me lonely and ripped off with no potentials
I am the Poor
I have seen a video on YouTube in which there was a person walking above the rail bars of a train. The problem lies in the fact that a train was running with all of its power facing this man. The person thought that he would reach the other side with plenty of time to spare. This, unfortunately, was only his thought. In a turn of events, the man’s foot got stuck in the rail bars. He tried his best to release it, but it was completely stuck and the train was approaching with great speed. Its sound was filling the place with deadly terror. The man kept attempting to get free, his face and veins showing his horror. He was about to meet his end, and death was about to truly come to him! When the distance between him and the train became very small, Allah gave the permission to the rail bars of the train to release his foot and he was able to jump to the opposite side in a blink. Just a fraction of a minute would have been enough to end his life tragically! Be sure of your weakness. Be sure of the flaws in your arguments. Be sure of your poverty. Then tie your heart tightly to Allah, and repeat: I am the one in need of the God of all creation I am the one who is certainly poor in all of his situations Mention the Messenger Lut, peace be upon him, when his people attacked his house, desiring to remove the door of the house in order to kidnap his guests, the angels. What an eternal shame this is when the treacherous of your people kidnap your guests. Therefore, he sighed in a weak and sad tone:
﴾He said, “Would that I had power to suppress you or that I could betake myself to some powerful support.”﴿
Allah’s Messenger, peace be upon him, said, “May Allah bestow His mercy on Lut. He wanted to have a powerful support. If I were to stay in prison (for a period equal to) the stay of Joseph and then the offer of freedom came to me, then I would have accepted it.” (1)
Tie your hand to Allah’s rope of belief attempting to seek His refuge And be sure it shall be the refuge when the other supporters flee.
He can preserve you even through your enemies! How can this be? It is mentioned in folktales that there was a thief who snuck into a house and stole money from some of the chambers where there was a child and his parents. The thief entered the chamber, picked up the child, and moved him to another room. The child, however, woke up and screamed. The parents woke up in a panic and wondered what had urged their child to go out of the room during the night. So, they got up and attempted to search for him in the house. The thief took this chance and entered the room of the parents to steal from it, but suddenly the ceiling fell apart on his head and buried all of his body in the layers of the chamber! Who inspired this thief to sneak into this house to rescue this family from being among the dead and being buried underneath the rubbish. His slyness worked against him! Allah is the Ever-Preserving who rescues His worshippers. He preserves them even through their enemies! One of the best ways to obtain the protections of the Ever-Preserving, who is Exalted in the heavens, is to be mindful of Allah and to observe His impact in every situation in your life!
Repeat and meditate on this hadith from the Prophet, peace be upon him. Ibn ‘Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated, “One day I was riding behind the Prophet when he said, ‘O lad, be mindful of Allah, and you will find Him in front of you. Recognize and acknowledge Allah in times of ease and prosperity, and He will remember you in times of adversity.’” Be mindful of Allah, Allah keeps an eye protecting you Be mindful of His orders and do what He has commanded Be mindful of His bans and stop completely what He has banned for you
That is the gist of this section. After raising above your fears and worries, Allah is going to rescue you from them, like what He did with bin Matta (Jonah). There is no fear, worry, or affliction harder than the ones of Dhun-Nun (Prophet Yunus), peace be upon him, who was in three stages of darkness: First, the darkness of the sea. Second, the darkness of the night. Third, the darkness of the belly of the whale. What a life full of desperation that you would live in the belly of a whale all your life… Darkness, constriction, and suffocation…Then he faced all of this strife by supplicating Allah in one statement:
“There is none worthy of worship except You. Glory to You. Indeed, I have been of the transgressors.” (Lā ilāha illā anta subḥānaka innī kuntu minaẓ-ẓālimīn.) These letters, that may seem weak, rise and penetrate the darkness of the whale, the darkness of the sea, and the darkness of the night, and they rise to the heaven. It is narrated that the angels heard it and said, “O Allah, a known voice from an unknown place!” Relief comes, preservation happens, forgiveness pours out upon him, and the whale leaves him on the beach. Then Allah, the Ever-Preserving, plants for him a pumpkin tree. All of us in this life resemble Dhun-Nun. All of this life gathers to make us suffer through strife, and nothing will take us to the safety of the shore except, }
“There is none worthy of worship except You. Glory to you. Indeed, I have been of the transgressors.” (Lā ilāha illā anta subḥānaka innī kuntu minaẓ-ẓālimīn.) O Lord, preserve us with your Ever-Preserving power, surround us with your care, and protect us between us, behind us, to our left, to our right, from above us, and from below us from that which You will rescue us of what worries us and what causes us to take precautions.