Names 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 XXXX | Part XXXXI | Part XXXXII | Part XXXXIII
Think hard. Are you?
A Mu’min is usually translated as ‘believer’. So some may answer yes. Others may remember the verse in the Qur’an that says:
“The Bedouins say, “We have believed (aamanna).” Say, “You have not [yet] believed; but say [instead], ‘We have submitted (aslamna),’ for faith (iman) has not yet entered your hearts. And if you obey Allah and His Messenger, He will not deprive you from your deeds of anything. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.”” (Qur’an, 49:14)
And thus the answer to the question might be: “God willing! I try.”
Now, what does it mean to you when Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala (exalted is He) tells us that one of His Names is Al-Mu’min? Does it mean that Allah (swt) has faith? In what?
This Name of Allah (swt), when realized, is beautiful and can do much to strengthen our hearts. Mu’min comes from the root a-m-n can mean to be secure, safe, free from fear and also to believe in. Allah (swt) says in Surat Quraysh:
“Let them worship the Lord of this House, Who has fed them, [saving them] from hunger and made them safe (aamanahum), [saving them] from fear.”
Allah (swt) uses the word “aamanahum“, from the same root, to describe how He had made Quraysh safe from any fear.
In an insightful narration, the Prophet ﷺ tells us that, “Whoever among you wakes up secure (aaminan) in his property, healthy in his body, and he has his food for the day, it is as if he were given the entire world,” (Tirmidhi). The same root gives rise to the word the Prophet ﷺ uses—”aaminan”—for someone to be secure in his home.
A-m-n also means to believe or affirm truth. Allah (swt) says in the Qur’an in the story of Prophet Joseph `alayhi as-salaam (may peace be upon him):
“They said, “O our father, indeed we went racing each other and left Joseph with our possessions, and a wolf ate him. But you would not believe (bi-mu’min) us, even if we were truthful.”” (Qur’an, 12:17)
To bring it back to Allah’s Name (swt), you can only truly believe in someone if they make you feel secure. Allah (swt) is al-Mu’min; He grants you that security of faith and through faith. As al-Ghazali says:
“Al-Mu’min—the Faithful—is the one whom security and safety are ascribed because He conveys the means to attain them and blocks the paths of dangers… The absolutely faithful one is God—may He be praised and exalted—as the one from whose direction alone security and safety may conceivably emanate.”
As human beings, we have weaknesses. We have fears. And as al-Ghazali explains, the biggest fear is eternal damnation, and nothing can protect us from that but the profession of faith in the unity of God. That is where true security and safety lie. If you believe in Allah (swt), truly believe, then He is the source of security. He will give you safety.
Aasiya, the wife of Fir’on (Pharoah) was one such person who was granted this security of faith. Her husband was a tyrant, and eventually she would be the object of his tyranny. But in her heart, she did not falter. She was secure, unwavering. Allah (swt) tells us:
“And Allah presents an example of those who believed: the wife of Pharaoh, when she said, “My Lord, build for me near You a house in Paradise and save me from Pharaoh and his deeds and save me from the wrongdoing people.”” (Qur’an, 66:11)
Aasiya could see what was beyond. As Imam Suhaib taught us, she does not simply ask for a house in Paradise. The crucial part is “near You”, meaning priority is nearness to Allah (swt). And that was how she could face a tyrant: iman (faith) in Al-Mu’min.
It is through faith in Allah (swt) that we are given true security. When we recite the Qur’an, we can see how its teachings and lessons are directly applicable to the world today. We can find comfort in the fact that Allah (swt) makes after hardship, ease (Qur’an, 65:7); we widen our vision when we understand that we may dislike something that might actually be good for us (Qur’an, 2:216); and we force ourselves to self-reflect when Allah (swt) tells us that the corruption we see around us may very well be what our own hands have wrought (Qur’an, 30:41). This iman means that we are secure in our hearts. Therefore, when we say we have iman, what we are saying is that we have been granted security and tranquility.
May al-Mu’min grant us true iman!
Living with Allah’s Names
- Give other people security
Al-Ghazali counseled: “A man’s share in the name and attribute lies in all creatures’ being safe from him… Those men will be most worthy of the name ‘faithful’.” As the Prophet ﷺ emphatically declared: “By Allah he does not believe, by Allah he does not believe, by Allah he does not believe!” The companions asked, “Who, O Messenger of Allah?” And the Prophet ﷺ replied: “He whose neighbor is not safe from his misdeeds,” (Bukhari).
- Let your actions affirm the truth of your speech
Mu’min is also to believe or affirm the truth. Allah’s actions and speech in the Qur’an confirm one another and there is no contradiction. Sheikh Ratib an-Nabulsi advises that our actions must correspond and affirm our speech.
- Guide others to safety
And the most deserving person to be called a Mu’min is he who guides others to what will gives them ultimate safety and security; he guides others to Al-Mu’min Himself. While we know that it is only Allah (swt) who guides, guidance here means in advising with wisdom and informing.