What is the Crown of Remembrance? Its Virtue and Best Times

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3/06/2024 11:54 AM

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It is reported that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, "The best remembrance is 'There is no god but Allah,' and the best supplication is 'Praise be to Allah.'" This was narrated by Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah from Jabir. Additionally, in the hadith narrated by Ahmad from a man among the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him), the Prophet said, "The best words after the Quran are four, and they are from the Quran: 'Glory be to Allah,' 'Praise be to Allah,' 'There is no god but Allah,' and 'Allah is the Greatest.'"

 
 

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The Virtue of the Crown of Remembrance

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said regarding the virtue of the Crown of Remembrance: “Whoever says: ‘There is no god but Allah, alone, without partner, to Him belongs the kingdom and to Him is all praise, and He is over all things competent,’ one hundred times in a day, it will be equivalent to freeing ten slaves, one hundred good deeds will be recorded for him, one hundred sins will be erased from him, and he will be protected from Satan on that day until evening. No one will bring anything better than what he has done except someone who has done more than this” (Narrated by Bukhari and Muslim).

In the Sunan al-Kubra of Al-Nasa’i, it is stated: “Whoever says ‘There is no god but Allah, alone, without partner, to Him belongs the kingdom and to Him is all praise, and He is over all things competent,’ one hundred times before sunrise and before sunset, no one will bring anything better than what he has done on the Day of Judgment except someone who has said the same or added to it.” A Muslim should also be consistent in performing prayer, giving zakat, offering charity, reciting the Quran, and other acts of obedience, as remembrance alone does not replace other acts of worship.

Al-Nawawi, in his explanation of this hadith, states: “This indicates that if one says this phrase of Tahleel more than one hundred times a day, he will receive the reward mentioned for the hundred times and will have additional rewards for the extra. This is not one of the limits that one should not exceed or surpass in number, like the number of purification steps or prayer units, where increasing beyond the set number does not carry extra merit or could invalidate it. It is likely that the extra acts of goodness mentioned could be from any good deeds, not just the same phrase. This is the more apparent interpretation, and Allah knows best.”

Stories of the Crown of Remembrance

There is nothing more protective for a person from falling into danger than the remembrance of Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “I command you to remember Allah,” and said, “No deed done by a human being is more saving from the punishment of Allah than the remembrance of Allah, Mighty and Majestic,” and he said, “No group of people sit together without remembering Allah, but they rise from their gathering as if they had been sitting around the corpse of a donkey, and it will be a source of regret for them” (Narrated by Ahmad). Allah Almighty says in His Holy Book, “O you who have believed, remember Allah with much remembrance. And exalt Him morning and afternoon” (Quran 33:41-42).

The companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them) ate little, endured hardship, hunger, and deprivation in a way that no one today could bear, yet they had excellent memory and great willpower, which is an effect of remembrance and faith. Ibn al-Qayyim states in “Al-Wabil Al-Sayyib”: “Remembrance gives the one who remembers strength, to the extent that he can do things with it that he could not do without it. I witnessed from the strength of Sheikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah in his walking, speech, and writing something incredible. He used to write in a day what a copyist would write in a week and more. The soldiers witnessed from his strength in battle something astonishing. The Prophet (peace be upon him) taught his daughter Fatimah and her husband Ali to glorify Allah thirty-three times, praise Him thirty-three times, and magnify Him thirty-four times every night before sleeping, when she complained of hardship and service, saying, ‘This is better for you than a servant.'” It is said that whoever maintains this will find strength in his day that suffices him from needing a servant.

Ibn Abbas mentioned the virtue of remembrance: “Good deeds bring light to the face, light to the heart, expansion in provision, strength to the body, and love in the hearts of creation. Sins bring darkness to the face, darkness in the grave and the heart, weakness in the body, reduction in provision, and hatred in the hearts of creation.”

Best Times for Remembrance

The best time for remembrance is during the last third of the night, which is the time of divine descent. Umar ibn Absa reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The closest the Lord is to the servant is in the last part of the night, so if you can be among those who remember Allah at that time, then do so” (Narrated by Tirmidhi and authenticated by Al-Albani).

Remembrance is recommended at all times. Allah says in His Holy Book, “And when you have completed the prayer, remember Allah standing, sitting, or [lying] on your sides” (Quran 4:103). Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) reported, “The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to remember Allah at all times” (Narrated by Muslim). One of the beloved remembrances to the Prophet (peace be upon him), as reported by Abu Huraira, is: “Saying ‘Glory be to Allah, and praise be to Allah, and there is no god but Allah, and Allah is the Greatest’ is dearer to me than all that the sun has risen upon” (Narrated by Muslim).

The Wonders of “There is no god but Allah, alone, without partner”

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Whoever says before rising from his place after the Fajr (dawn) prayer and the Maghrib (sunset) prayer: ‘There is no god but Allah, alone, without partner, to Him belongs the kingdom and to Him is all praise, He gives life and causes death, and He is over all things competent’ ten times, Allah will write for him ten good deeds, erase ten sins from him, raise him ten degrees, and it will be a protection for him from every harm and from Satan the Accursed, and no sin will overtake him except polytheism. And he will be among the best people in deeds, except for someone who surpasses him in saying more than this” (Narrated by Ahmad).

Say “There is no god but Allah, alone, without partner, to Him belongs the kingdom and to Him is all praise, He gives life and causes death, and He is over all things competent” to be among the best in deeds on the Day when there is no shade but His shade. It is best to complete it once every day and preferably in the morning, maintaining the ten said after Fajr and Maghrib. Continuous practice is better than accumulation, though breaking them up is permissible. Al-Nawawi, in his explanation, states: “The apparent meaning of the hadith indicates that one receives the mentioned reward for saying this phrase one hundred times in a day, whether said consecutively or intermittently, in different gatherings, or some at the beginning and some at the end of the day. But it is better to say them consecutively in the morning to serve as a protection for the entire day.”

Remembrance and Other Good Deeds

People often wonder which deeds are best and compare remembrance with other righteous actions. In this regard, Sheikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, as mentioned in Majmu’ al-Fatawa, says about the best deeds after the obligatory acts: “It differs among people based on what they are capable of and what suits their time. There is no single comprehensive answer for everyone. However, it is almost a consensus among scholars that constantly remembering Allah is the best occupation for oneself in general. Then know that everything spoken by the tongue and conceived by the heart that brings one closer to Allah from learning and teaching beneficial knowledge, enjoining good, and forbidding evil is part of the remembrance of Allah. Thus, whoever engages in seeking beneficial knowledge after performing obligatory acts or sits in a gathering of jurisprudence, this too is among the best remembrance of Allah. Upon reflection, you will not find much difference among the early scholars in their words about the best deeds.”

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