Living Islam - Islamic Tradition


2021-02-17/ 2009


Excerpt/ Fallback


Allah Can Jog/Trot [Harwala] Acc To Ibn Uthaimin

[And Explaining The Hadith Qudsi: "Whoever comes near Me..."]

Regarding the hadith: "If My servant comes near Me one hand-span I come near him one cubit. If he comes near Me one cubit I come near him an arm's length. If he comes to Me walking, I come to him running." In al-Bukhari, Muslim and others.

Imam al-Tirmidhi said in his Sunan: "It is narrated from al-A`mash regarding the explanation of this hadith, 'Whosoever comes near Me one cubit I come near him an arm's length,' that it means with forgiveness and mercy. Thus did some of the people of learning explain it. They said: Its meaning is only that He says, 'If the servant draws near Me by obeying Me and doing what I commanded, I am very swift to draw near him with My forgiveness and My mercy.'"


"Qatada said: 'Allah is fastest in forgiving.... What is meant is to express the swiftness of the response and forgiveness of Allah, as we narrated from Qatada." Al-Bayhaqi, al-Asma' wal-Sifat (Kawthari ed. p. 285-286; Hashidi ed. 2:51-54).

"He did not mean by this hadith a coming-near in terms of distance, for such is impossible and inexistent. All he meant was the servant's coming-near in terms of good works, and the coming-near of Allah in terms of answer and acceptance." Al-Baji, al-Muntaqa (1:357)

"The meaning of His coming closer to us by descending to the nearest heaven, or by His drawing-near a cubit and an arm's length, is that He treats us with munificence (ikram) in the manner of the liege-lord that walks towards his servants and condescends to them, turning to them with full attention (muqbilan `alayhim) and examining their needs one by one." Ibn `Abd al-Salam, al-Ishara ila al-Ijaz (p. 106).

"This hadith is among the narrations of the Divine Attributes and it is impossible take it in its outward meaning. We already spoke many times about the hadiths on the Divine Attributes. Its meaning is, 'Whoever comes near Me with obedience to Me, I come near him with My mercy and success, and help, and if he does more, I do more. If he comes walking and hastens to obey Me, I come running, that is, I pour mercy over him and overtake him so that I do not make him need to walk much in order to attain his goal.' The message is that his reward is many times over proportional to his coming near." Al- Nawawi, Sharh Sahih Muslim (17:3-4).

Re: In Sunna-Principles@... Irfan wrote:

In Fatawa al-Aqida by Muhammad b. Salih b. Uthaimin, page 112, he says: [ARABIC] "What could forbid us from believing that Allah performs jogging/trotting {harwala}?" {!!!}

A: "Whoever possesses one iota of reason harbors no doubt whatsoever that change, displacement, and removal are among the attributes of bodies." Imam al-Haramayn, al-Nizamiyya (Kawthari ed. p. 20)

"Since you understand that the one who 'descends' towards you is near to you, content yourself with the knowledge that He is near you, and do not think in terms of bodily nearness." Ibn al-Jawzi, Daf` Shubah al-Tashbih (Saqqaf ed. p. 196).

[Ibn al-Jawzi:] "After they imagined a huge image on the Throne, they took to interpreting away all that contradicts its being located on the Throne. For example His saying: 'and whoever comes to Me walking, I come to him running,' concerning which they said: 'Coming near is not meant {literally}, but only the nearness of rank and favor.' They also said that the statement of Allah should come unto them in the shadows of the clouds (2:210) must be understood literally to mean the coming of His very Essence. So they declare it permissible one year and they declare it forbidden another. ... They said: 'We affirm this according to its external sense!' Then they placated the commonality by adding: 'But we do not affirm limbs.' It is as if they said: 'So-and-so is standing but he is not standing.' ... Those are less intelligent than Juha.... I mentioned some of their statements only so that one should not accept any of them. For CAUTIONING AGAINST SUCH PEOPLE IS WORSHIP." Ibn al-Jawzi, Sayd al-Khatir (p. 91-95).

GF Haddad 2009-02-16