Islamic Character With the Divine

What do you want to leave behind? Allah al-Wārith

https://stocksnap.io/photo/TP3GQ9C2S3Names of Allah Series:  Part I | Part II | Part III | Part IV | Part V | Part VI | Part VII | Part VIII | Part IX | Part X | Part XI | Part XII | Part XIII | Part XIV | Part XV | Part XVI | Part XVII | Part XVIII | Part XIX | Part XX Part XXI | Part XXII | Part XXIII | Part XXIV | Part XXV | Part XXVI | Part XXVII | Part XXVIII | Part XXIX | Part XXX | Part XXXI Part XXXII | Part XXXIII | Part XXXIV | Part XXXV | Part XXXVI | Part XXXVII | Part XXXVIII | Part XXXIX | Part XL | Part XLI | Part XLII Part XLIII Part XLIV | Part XLV | Part XLVI | Part XLVII | Part XLVIII Part XLIX Part L | Part LI | Part LII | Part LIII | Part LIV | Part LV | Part LVI | Part LVII| Part LVIII | Part LIX | Part LX | Part LXI | Part LXII | Part LXIII | Part LXIV | Part LXV | Part LXVI | Part LXVII | Part LXVIII

In this journey through Allah’s Names, we have sought to go beyond an academic reading of His Names and attributes to see how Allah’s attributes manifest around us, and what it means for us to truly know Him. Our relationship with Him should feel like a relationship, and He invites us to strengthen that connection and love by revealing to us His Names and attributes. If you are ever feeling lost or confused, turn to Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala (exalted is He) knowing that He hears and sees all. Read through the articles to remind yourself that Allah is always with you.

In this article, we will focus on Allah’s Name al-Wārith—the Inheritor. Allah says in the Qur’an:

“And indeed, it is We who give life and cause death, and We are the Inheritor.” (Qur’an, 15:23)

Allah (swt) is the Inheritor, who remains after all is gone. Al-Ghazali states that Allah (swt) is the one to whom possessions return after the owner passes, as He is the One who remains, so everything returns to Him. So what does this mean for us?

1- Everything is Allah’s, and all will return to Him. We are temporary possessors.

Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an:

“The Day they come forth nothing concerning them will be concealed from Allah. To whom belongs [all] sovereignty this Day? To Allah, the One, the Prevailing.” (Qur’an, 40:16)

This verse reminds us that ultimately the true Possessor is Allah, and everything we have returns to Him. Sheikh Ratib an-Nabulsi states that knowing that Allah (swt) is the Inheritor changes our relationship with what we perceive to be ‘ours’; it ceases to be a relationship based on ownership but rather one of responsibility and trusteeship. In this way we are not ‘entitled’ to our possessions, doing with them what we please, but rather we have to see what we have as things entrusted to us. A Bedouin was leading a camel, and was asked who the owner of the camel was. He replied, “It is Allah’s, in my hands.” Anything that we have is Allah’s, simply in our hands for the time being.

Imagine treating all your transactions as transactions with Allah (swt). How would that impact how you conducted yourself? What about seeing your own body as a gift from Him, would you take care of it better? Would you be as possessive with the cash in your pocket? Would it be so hard for you to give something away?

2- What do you want to leave? Know that the best thing that you can leave is your good deeds.

Sheikh Abdulrazzaq al-Bader says that every believer should know that his good deeds are the best things he can leave behind, because that is the true inheritance that actually remains. The Prophet ﷺ (peace be upon him) gave us some examples of those things that remain:

“The good deeds that will reach a believer after his death are: knowledge which he learned and then spread; a righteous child whom he leaves behind; a copy of the Qur’an that he leaves as a legacy; a mosque that he built; a house that he built for wayfarers; a canal that he dug; or charity that he gave during his lifetime when he was in good health. These deeds will reach him after his death.” [Ibn Majah]

The Prophet ﷺ also said, “Whoever gives charity and that is the last of his deeds will enter Paradise.” [Ahmad]

If you focus on planting the good wherever you are, you can be of the people Allah speaks about in this verse: “That is Paradise, which We give as inheritance to those of Our servants who were fearing of Allah.” (Qur’an, 19:63)

3- Al-Wārith can allow you to inherit, if you are righteous

“And verily we have written in the Scripture, after the Reminder: My righteous slaves will inherit the earth.” (Qur’an, 21:105)

There are implications for the dunya (this life) in this Name as well. Allah reminds us that, ultimately, those who inherit the earth are not the powerful. He shows us the opposite: while they may have temporary power, they eventually fall, as many seemingly great but unjust empires did in the past. He reminds us to stick to the lofty characteristics of this religion, because injustice never wins. In the Qur’an, Allah (swt) tells us about a conversation between Moses `alayhi as salaam (peace be upon him), and his people:

“Said Moses to his people, “Seek help through Allah and be patient. Indeed, the earth belongs to Allah. He causes to inherit it whom He wills of His servants. And the [best] outcome is for the righteous.”” (Qur’an, 7:128)

The counsel of Moses is important. He is speaking to the Children of Israel in a difficult time, a time in which they are being oppressed. He reminds them to seek help through patience and prayer, and that this earth ultimately belongs to Allah (swt). The oppressors will not last, so never take your cue from them.

That is why the Prophet ﷺ also reminds us, “Do not be imma’a (imitators)… One who says, ‘I am with the people. If they do good, I do good also; and if they do evil, I also do evil.’ Rather, train yourselves to do good when others do good, but if they do evil, to refrain from their evil.” (Tirmidhi)

May Allah make us all of the righteous.

About the author

Jinan Yousef

Jinan Yousef

Jinan's main interests within the field of Islamic Studies are the Names of Allah, the life and character of the Prophet ﷺ, tazkiya and Muslim personalities.

5 Comments

  • Jazak’Allahu Khairan Sr. Jinan, as always.

    Apt reminder that whatever we possess is truly Allah’s – that he’s loaned us these material or monetary goods.

  • I was thinking… I believe Hell is not described as being ‘inherited’ by evildoers. Does this reflect the fact that mankind is from Paradise (near to God), and so it is our inheritance, unless we disqualify ourselves by betraying our own initial nature? Whereas the reverse is not so. No one is from Hell, not even Iblees, because God does not create His subjects to be far from Him, only near, because He loves.

Leave a Comment