Attributes of Allah

In the saying of Allah: “He is al-Awwal and al-Akhir, al-Zahir and al-Batin; He has knowledge of all things” (Surah al-Hadid 57:3)

Neither does His Attribute as the al-Awwal entail that he has a beginning, nor does His Attribute as al-Akhir imply that he has an end, nor does His Attribute as al-Zahir connote deficiency, and nor does His Attribute as al-Batin denote any form of inactiveness in His Attributes.

The charge of (asking) “why?” is tamed and silenced when it stands before His Divine Presence, and the blaze of the Truth holds back the hand of (asking) “how?”, and the lights of the Exalted and Glorified daze and blind the eyes of human thoughts. The footsteps beseeching (the Lord) come to a stand at the sacred zone of submission (to Allah) Exalted is He from having any likeness or equal; Exalted is He for He is above being represented and exemplified, for indeed, confusion and bafflement only happens in respect to those that have equivalents or peers.

The Mushabbih (i.e. the one who draws resemblance between Allah’s Attributes with the attributes of the creation) is contaminated by the innards of anthropomorphism, and the Mu’atillah (i.e. the one who denied, negates or rejects the Names and Attributes of Allah) is defiled by the blood of denial, whereas the one upon the truth enjoys pure milk which lies between the innards and blood. Indeed, He is Exalted (nothing is like unto Him), far removed is He from having His Actions questioned with “why?” His Existence cannot be questioned with “how?”, and His Attributes cannot be contained by “when?” Whoever looks through the mirror of His Attribute of Samadiyyah (i.e. the Eternal Refuge) will realise the transcendence of the Creator, and cognise that such mirror cannot reflect the images of partners or the shadow of semblance (i.e. resembling Allah’s attributes with the creation). “Think and reflect on the signs of Allah, and do not contemplate the Essence of Allah, otherwise you will be ruined.”

When conjunctivitis encounters the wind, its severity increases – [the example of this is like] the mosquitoes when they complained to (Prophet) Sulayman, peace be upon him, about their suffering due to the wind, Sulayman, peace be upon him, summoned the wind [in order to question it]. When the mosquitoes heard that they began to retreat to which Sulayman asked: “Why are you leaving?” the mosquitoes said: “If we had the strength to face the wind, we would have not complained to you about it!”

Seeds of Admonishment and Reform by Imam ibn Jawzi, Pages 25-27