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The Eighth Hadith (which verse of Allah’s Book is the greatest?)

Under category : Ponder on a Hadith
159 2020/12/30 2021/10/20
Article translated to : العربية

Muslim narrated from Ubayy bin Ka‘b that he said:

Allah’s Messenger asked me, “Abul Mundhir (this is Ubayy’s Kunya), do you know which verse of Allah’s Book is the greatest?” I replied, “Allah and His Messenger know best.” He asked again: “Abul Mundhir, do you know which verse of Allah’s Book is the greatest? I said, “Allah! There is no god ˹worthy of worship˺ except Him, the Ever-Living, All-Sustaining” (Quran: 2: 255) Thereupon he struck me on the chest and said, “May you rejoice by this knowledge, O Abu Mundhir!"


May you rejoice by this knowledge: a supplication that learning becomes easy and firm for him.

Values (36)

Values on Ayat al-Kursi:

The greatest verse in the Book of Almighty Allah!

The essence of the verse is purely and solely about Almighty Allah, the verse talks about The Oneness of Almighty Allah. This is the reason of Surat al-Ikhlas’ virtue, and the reason for deeds to be raised and accepted by Allah. The more something is purely and solely done for Allah, the higher its rank and reward. 

Ayat al-Kursi contains two attributes of Almighty Allah, all attributes of The Lord, Praise Be to Him, are based on those two, namely Life and Self-Sufficiency, any attribute such as the hearing, seeing, power and other attributes cannot exist without the attribute of Life and Self-Sufficiency.

In Ayat al-Kursi The Greatest Name of Allah is mentioned, which if He is called upon thereby, He will answer and if He is asked thereby, He will give. In a hadith by the Prophet (peace be upon him): Whoever supplicates to Allah saying: “O Allah, I ask You by virtue of the fact that all praise is due to You; there is no god but You alone....O Ever-Living, O Sustainer…” The Prophet (peace be upon him) then said: He has supplicated to Allah using His Greatest Name...

There are certain verses and Surahs that have exclusive virtues in the meaning, reward and effect, yet that does not mean the other verses and surahs are less or inadequate in rank.

Because Ayat al-Kursi has distinctive virtue, the sunnah of the Prophet guides us to recite it in the morning, night, before going to sleep, and after the daily prayers. It is almost the most recited verse day and night, by the tongue and heart of every believer.

Juristic Values:

It is encouraged (mustahabb) to be given a kunya, for example, the father or the mother of such and such, even if the person does not have a child.

It is also mustahabb that the man calls his brother or the sheikh calls his student by their kunyas, to be friendly and nice.

It is permissible to praise someone, as long as it will not lead to arrogance.

It is permissible to joke around by the hand, i.e. the Prophet struck Abul Mundhir on the chest, without harming anyone.

It is mustahabb to tell good news.

The phrase (Allah and His Messenger know best) was told only while the Prophet was alive, peace be upon him, and only concerning religious matters. After his death, we only say (Allah knows best) in every matter, whether religious or otherwise.

There is a difference between the permitted and unpermitted striking.

It is permitted to swear by the name of Allah, but we should not ask someone to swear.

It is permitted to mention a part of a verse from the Book of Allah…

Educational Values:

1. It is encouraged to be friendly and nice with students by calling them by their most beloved names.

2. The teacher should encourage his students to answer and talk in his presence so that to correct any mistakes for them.

3. Supplicating for the diligent student that attaining knowledge becomes easier for him and praising him boost his self-confidence and push him further to excel and continue working hard.

4. The student should think through and not to rush when he answers as it might lead to learning more than what he already knows.

5. The student answers the question of the teacher if he finds that the teacher wants an answer from him, not just to attract his attention by asking a question.

6. Repeating the question and changing its style if needed encourage the student to be more diligent and clarify what the teacher aims of this question.

7. When the teacher asks his students and discusses topics with them, it guides them to rearrange their information, think in a different and unique way. It helps them building a network of information.

8. The teacher should know the knowledge level of the students, he should know how good they are. This is reflected in the question asked by the Prophet (peace be upon him) to Abul Mundhir.

9. Being friendly and kind to students encourage them to work hard.

10. Using diverse educational methods such as questions and direct education etc.

Dawah Values:

The caller to Islam should talk kindly to people, and joke with them but respectfully.

It is a good polite way to call the one sitting with you by his name, even if he was near and paying attention while you speak.

The Prophet, peace be upon him, was the best teacher, in every way. He was a role model in his manners, and he lived according to what he taught the Muslims.

The Prophet, peace be upon him, supported his companions. He shed light on their status and brilliance in knowledge so that other people follow their footsteps.

Ubayy bin Ka’ab, may Allah be pleased with him, was known for his vast knowledge, especially Qur’anic sciences. This is why; the Messenger of Allah said about him, "The person who reads the Quran in the best way in my ummah is Ubayy." (Bukhari)

The Prophet, peace be upon him, struck the chest of Ubayy bin Ka’ab, may Allah be pleased with him, to indicate that he is filled with wisdom and knowledge.

Ubayy said “Allah and His Messenger know best,” so he referred every knowledge to Almighty Allah and His Messenger, even though he knows the answer to the question, yet he did not say it so that he talks longer to the prophet or gains more knowledge and wisdom from Allah’s Messenger, peace be upon him. But, when the Prophet, peace be upon him, asked him again, he quickly answered to obey the Messenger (PBUH).

The religious knowledge is the highest, most valuable and richest knowledge for Allah in terms of the reward. The ones specialized in other sciences which are beneficial for people, whether Muslims or non-Muslims or even animals, they are rewarded for benefiting others. Allah’s Messenger, peace be upon him, said, "There is none amongst the Muslims who plants a tree or sows seeds, and then a bird, or a person or an animal eats from it, but is regarded as a charity for him." (Narrated by An-Nisai’)

The word aya used in a hadith may mean a verse or sign; in the hadith it means a verse. Allah’s Messenger said: (a verse (aya) from the book of Allah), which indicates that the aya is from the Qur’an. Not a universal one, i.e. a one which we may see as Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) said, "The sun and the moon do not eclipse because of someone's death or life but they are two ayas amongst the ayas of Allah, so pray whenever you see them."

Values related to Principles of Jurisprudence:

The companions followed ijtihad at the presence of Allah’s Messenger, even though this is not literally ijtihad for the scholars of principles of jurisprudence, because it is supported by the Prophet’s approval and confirmation which ranks it as a Prophetic tradition, not a companion’s ijtihad.

Linguistic Values:

May you rejoice by this knowledge: This indicates that knowledge is one of the reasons for happiness and joy.

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