Qasida Burda verses 35-36

Wa-ʿalaykum as-Salam wa-rahmatullah wa-barakatuh:

What is the meaning of "muqtahim[i]" in the line of the Burda Shareef which states: "Li kulli hawlin min ahwal muqtahimi"?

Also, what is the translation of "Abara fee qawli laa minhu wa la n'ami"?

They are verses 35-36:

Nabiyyuna al-aamiru al-naahi fa-la ahadun
abarra fi qawli "la" minhu wa-la "naʿami."

Huwa al-Habibu al-ladhi turja shafaʿatuhu,
li-kulli hawlin min al-ahwali muqtahimi!


Our Prophet who commands and forbids, so that none
is more just than him in saying "no" or "yes":

He is the Beloved whose intercession is dearly hoped,
for each disaster of the disasters that shall befall!


The commentary is by Imam Ibn Hajar al-Haytami al-Makki in _al-ʿUmda fi Sharh al-Burda_, ed. Bassam Muhammad Barud (UAE: Dar al-Faqih, 2003) p. 226-235:

"OUR PROPHET, O throngs of the Umma - those who responded with belief and those who are still called upon to believe! - WHO COMMandS good and FORBIDS evil, SO THAT NONE in all creation IS MORE JUST, meaning more truthful THAN HIM, upon him blessings and peace, IN SAYING 'NO,' meaning, when he utters it OR 'YES.'

"HE IS THE BELOVED who gathers up all the attributes of being-beloved (mahbubiyya) exclusively of any other.

"Our liege-lord Muhammad, upon him and his House blessings and peace, is most famous for [the attribute of] love (al-mahabba) while our liege-lord Ibrahim is most famous for [that of] intimacy (al-khulla). There is a difference of opinion over which of these two attributes is preferable to the other but there is agreement that each of those two Prophets has both and that our Prophet, upon him and his House blessings and peace, is better than Ibrahim, upon him and his House blessings and peace.

"It was said that khulla and mahabba [or muhabba] are on a par. It was also said that khulla is higher, because it is the pinnacle of mahabba.(*) But the majority hold that mahabba is preferable to khulla because the Habib arrives by himself, while the Khalil does not arrive except through an intermediary.

[(*) This is the position defended by Shaykh ʿAbd Allah al-Ghumari in his booklet _al-Sayf al-Battar ʿala Man Sabba al-Nabi al-Mukhtar_, also on the basis of lexical and Qur'anic proofs, and Ibn ʿUthaymin in his _Fatawa fil-ʿAqida_.]

"Also, the Khalil is forgiven within the scope (hadd) of aspiration (tamaʿ) while the Habib is forgiven within the scope of certitude (yaqin). Also, the Khalil said: {and abase me not on the day when they are raised} (26:88) while it was said, concerning the Beloved: {on the day when Allah will not abase the Prophet and those who believe with him} (66:8). Also, the Khalil said: {and give unto me a good report in later generations} (26:84) while the Habib was told: {and have We not exalted your fame?} (94:4).

"WHOSE INTERCESSION IS DEARLY HOPED in the Divine Presence, on behalf of each of His creatures. Hope is the opposite of despair. Intercession (shafaʿa) is derived from 'pair' (shafʿ) which is the opposite of 'odd' (watr). What is meant here is the request of forgiveness from Allah Most High for His servants.

"FOR EACH grave DISASTER, circumstancially connected with the word 'intercession,' 'for' meaning 'concerning' or 'at.' The word for 'disaster,' hawl, is the substantive for the verb 'haala' which means 'to be afraid.'

"OF THE DISASTERS, a circumstancial qualificative for the singular 'disaster.'

"THAT SHALL BEFALL, meaning, into which creatures will enter and fall brutally. It is said 'I fell into something' (iqtahamtu al-shay') when you hurl yourself into it without delay or deliberation. The poet indicated, when he said 'for each disaster,' the encompassing nature of the intercessions that are expected from him, upon and his House blessings and peace, for they are many.

"Among his intercessions: His intercession for the granting of rest to creatures from what harms them of the affliction of the station and the place of gathering (al-mawqif wal-mahshar). This intercession includes all people and jinn, all believers and disbelievers, and is exclusive to him, upon him blessings and peace. It is the Magnificent Intercession and the Glorious Station.

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession for people who shall enter Paradise without any reckoning. Al-Nawawi said it is exclusive to him, while Ibn Daqiq al-ʿId hesitated to affirm its exclusivity. Al-Subki confirmed the latter and said nothing was transmitted about it.

"Also his intercessions: His intercession for those who committed grave sins (kaba'ir) among those of his Community so that he brings them out of the Fire and enters them Paradise. He does this together with the Prophets, the angels, and all the righteous believers among the Awliya', the Ulema, and others [such as the Shuhada'].

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession on behalf of a people who were judged and for whom Hellfire became incumbent. He intercedes so that they do not enter it. This intercession is also not exclusive to him, upon him blessings and peace.

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession for the increase of levels in Paradise. Al-Nawawi considered it possible that this is exclusive to him.

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession for the lessening of the punishment of certain disbelievers which is connected to other than [pure] disbelief,(**) such as his uncle Abu Talib.

[(**) Because Abu Talib "believed inwardly and outwardly but refused to affirm the shahada" (Imam al-Qarafi as cited in al-Zurqani's Sharh on al-Qastallani's Mawahib) and is therefore categorized as a disbeliever, and Allah Most High knows best.]

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession at the Bridge and the Balance of deeds.

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession for whosoever died in al-Madina the Honorable [or Makka the Magnificent].(***)

[(***) "Whosoever visits me, I shall be his intercessor or witness for him; and whosoever dies in one of the two Holy Sanctuaries, Allah Most High shall resurrect him the Day of Resurrection among those who are safe." Narrated from our liege-lord ʿUmar, Allah be well-pleased with him, by al-Tayalisi in his Musnad.]

"Also among his intercessions: His intercession for whosoever visits his noble grave.(****)

[(****) See documentation of the hadith: "Whoever visits my grave..." on
Living Islam - Islamic Tradition

"Also among his intercessions:
Other than the above, as elaborated in the longer works."


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latest update: Wed, 7 Jan 2009


* living Islam – Islamic Tradition *