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17 - الْوَهَّابُ

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الْوَهَّابُ is translated as The Liberal Bestower and The Giver of Gifts. It is the superlative form, so The Extreme Bestower of Gifts. Allah ta’ala’s gifts are from all different categories of life, at all times and never end.



Linguistically Wahhaab means to give a lot of one’s wealth and it can mean someone who gives everything but Allah ta’ala is the True Wahhaab. Any Ne’mat in any form or shape is from Allah ta’ala.


وَمَا بِكُمْ مِنْ نِعْمَةٍ فَمِنَ اللَّهِ

Whatever blessings you enjoy are from Allah [Surah Nahl: 53]


Human beings can be Waahib – giver of gifts, as they can give gifts but they cannot be Wahhaab which means giving all the time, in all places and in all conditions and human beings do not have this ability.


Wahhaab also means giving gifts free from any conditions i.e. no return or compensation and whether the person is deserving of it or not. Allah ta’ala gives to all without looking at whether they are deserving of it or not.


There is a story related by Mufti Taqi Uthmani Sahib regarding his father, Mufti Shafi’ (رحمه الله)  the author of Ma’ariful Qur’an. He says he noticed that his father always gave to beggars whatever he had so he mentioned that there was no need for that as many of them were not deserving of it and they were often professional beggars. Mufti Shafi’(رحمه الله)  replied that he knew that however he felt that if he started giving to only those who were deserving, what would happen if Allah ta’ala also started doing that? He meant that Allah ta’ala gave so much despite us not deserving it. What would happen if He only gave to those who were deserving of it? This shows the practical way he used this name.


In the Qur’an

It is used in the Qur’an three times.


Human levels of Generosity

Human beings are not empty of being givers of gifts. There are different levels of generosity as there is always some degree of self-interest involved when gifting:


·     The highest level is that of people who give everything they own and even their lives for the sake of Allah ta’ala. It is not to attain Jannah or to be saved from Jahannam and it is not for any gain. That person is called generous and an example of it would be Abu Bakr RA who was the epitome of generosity.


      Below this level is that of people who give freely to attain Jannah. Ustaadhah gave an example of a woman who said she liked giving charity to different places as there was no way of knowing which will get accepted and where a Du’a would be made which was accepted by Allah ta’ala. These are people who give freely and do not look at whether they are deserving of it or not. *Ustaadhah said it is beautiful to see the different ways people approach Allah ta’ala.


      Another level is that of people who give freely to obtain praise and that is why it is better to give charity anonymously. Even though we may think we will not be affected by the praise, subconsciously we all are.


Anyone who does not think of material compensation i.e. what will I get in return, is regarded as generous otherwise it is not really generosity. Sometimes when someone gives you a gift it becomes burdensome as you feel you now have to return the gesture.


The point of giving a gift should be to please Allah ta’ala, maintain good family ties and develop love for one another. Then the gift will have meaning. The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam said,


تَهَادُوا تَحَابُّوا

“Give each other gifts and you will love each other.” [al-Adab al-Mufrad]


Imam Ghazali (رحمه الله) wrote,

“Any time in your intention you have any concept of gain, it decreases the reward, the concept of generosity and the person being Waahib.”


الْوَهَّابُ in Du’a

This name is often used in Du’a. It was used by the Ambiyaa علیھم السلام especially in times of need when they would invoke الْوَهَّابُ. 


Zakariyya علیه السلام, after seeing the out of season fruits provided to Maryam عليها السلام was inspired to make Dua,


رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنْ لَدُنْكَ ذُرِّيَّةً طَيِّبَةً إِنَّكَ سَمِيعُ الدُّعَاءِ  


O my Lord! Grant unto me from Thee a progeny that is pure: for Thou Art He that heareth prayer.

[Surha Aali ‘Imraan: 38]


هَبْ لِيGrant me/ Gift me. He asked even though he was old and his wife was barren. He did not look at whether it was possible or not. He just asked: هَبْ لِي


When Ibraheem AS was made to leave his people, he made Du'a:


رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ   

O my Lord! Grant me a Righteous (son) [Surah Saaffaat: 100]


Both Prophets made Du’a for children using the words هَبْ لِي with Zakariyyah علیه السلام asking for  ذُرِّيَّةً طَيِّبَةً  - pure child and Ibraheem علیه السلام asking for children who are  صالِحpious.


There is also the Du’a for spouses and children who become the coolness of the eyes,


رَبَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّيَّاتِنَا قُرَّةَ أَعْيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا


Our Rabb! Make our wives and our children to be the comfort of our eyes, and make us leaders of the righteous.

[Surah Furqaan: 74]


May Allah ta’ala gift everyone with spouses and children who are the coolness of our eyes, Aameen.

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