The Quranic Word Series: Dhikr

Today’s Quranic Word is Dhikr = ذِكْر

Dhikr means to remember or mention. Its plural form is adhkaar = أذكار

As we have seen in the video, dhikr literally means ‘to remember’ or ‘to mention’. This word is often used to describe the daily supplications a Muslim says, such as Subhanallah, Alhamdulillah, and others.

By saying these words of dhikr, we are remembering Allah’s greatness in our hearts and mentioning it with our tongues. The Prophet ﷺ said:

“The best remembrance is to declare there is no God but Allah. The best supplication is to declare all praise is due to Allah”

[At Tirmidhi]

The dhikr for “no God but Allah” is “(laa illaaha illa Allah” while “all praise is due to Allah” is “alhamdu li-llaah”.

But dhikr in a sense is more encompassing than this. One of the meanings of dhikr is salah for verily the salah itself is a remembrance of Allah. Allah says in the Quran: 

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِذَا نُودِيَ لِلصَّلَاةِ مِن يَوْمِ الْجُمُعَةِ فَاسْعَوْا إِلَىٰ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَذَرُوا الْبَيْعَ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

[Quran 62:9]

O you who have believed, when [the adhan] is called for the prayer on the day of Jumu’ah [Friday], then proceed to the remembrance of Allah and leave trade. That is better for you, if you only knew.

The message of the Quran is also a form of dhikr as it contains important reminders for us to reflect upon. Allah says:

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا بِالذِّكْرِ لَمَّا جَاءَهُمْ ۖ وَإِنَّهُ لَكِتَابٌ عَزِيزٌ

[Quran 41:41]

Indeed, those who disbelieve in the message after it has come to them… And indeed, it is a mighty Book.

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The Promised Rewards of Remembrance

Allah SWT wants us to remember Him a lot and be grateful to Him. This remembrance is all for our benefit. The more a person remembers Allah, the higher the level they will attain in front of Allah. Allah says: 

فَاذْكُرُونِي أَذْكُرْكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِي وَلَا تَكْفُرُونِ

[Quran 2:152]

So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me.

And the Prophet, may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:

يَقُولُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى: أَنَا عِنْدَ ظَنِّ عَبْدِي بِي،” وَأَنَا مَعَهُ إِذَا ذَكَرَنِي، فَإِنْ ذَكَرَنِي فِي نَفْسِهِ، ذَكَرْتُهُ فِي نَفْسِي، وَإِنْ ذَكَرَنِي فِي مَلَإٍ، ذَكَرْتُهُ فِي مَلَإٍ خَيْرٍ مِنْهُمْ، وَإِنْ تَقَرَّبَ إِلَيَّ بِشِبْرٍ، تَقَرَّبْتُ إِلَيْهِ ذِرَاعًا، وَإِنْ تَقَرَّبَ إِلَيَّ ذِرَاعًا، تَقَرَّبْتُ إِلَيْهِ بَاعًا، وَإِنْ أَتَانِي يَمْشِي، أَتَيْتُهُ هَرْوَلَةً”

[Al-Bukhari]

Allah the Almighty said: I am as My servant thinks I am. I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assembly better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm’s length, I draw near to him a cubit, and if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed.

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The Importance of Sincere Remembrance

Allah has ordered us to remember Him a lot. He says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ ذِكْرًا كَثِيرًا

[Quran 33:41]

O you who have believed, remember Allah with much remembrance.

We should not be like the hypocrites who are not sincere in their remembrance of Allaah and even the little they do is for showing off. Allah says:

إِنَّ الْمُنَافِقِينَ يُخَادِعُونَ اللَّهَ وَهُوَ خَادِعُهُمْ وَإِذَا قَامُوا إِلَى الصَّلَاةِ قَامُوا كُسَالَىٰ يُرَاءُونَ النَّاسَ وَلَا يَذْكُرُونَ اللَّهَ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا

[Quran 4:142]

Indeed, the hypocrites [think to] deceive Allah, but He is deceiving them. And when they stand for prayer, they stand lazily, showing [themselves to] the people and not remembering Allah except a little

Likewise, we should strive to avoid excessively loving the blessings that Allah has given us. This is because excessive love for the creation can distract us from remembering Allah the Creator. Allah specifically warned us in the Quran to beware of how excessive love for wealth and children can divert us:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُلْهِكُمْ أَمْوَالُكُمْ وَلَا أَوْلَادُكُمْ عَن ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ ۚ وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَٰلِكَ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ

[Quran 63:9]

O you who have believed, let not your wealth and your children divert you from remembrance of Allah. And whoever does that – then those are the losers.

As for those who are heedless in the remembrance of Allah, Allah says:

أَلَمْ يَأْنِ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَن تَخْشَعَ قُلُوبُهُمْ لِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَمَا نَزَلَ مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا يَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلُ فَطَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْأَمَدُ فَقَسَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ ۖ وَكَثِيرٌ مِّنْهُمْ فَاسِقُونَ

[Quran 57:16]

Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has come down of the truth? And let them not be like those who were given the Scripture before, and a long period passed over them, so their hearts hardened; and many of them are defiantly disobedient.

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The Benefits of Remembrance

Peace of Mind & Heart

One of the greatest benefits of dhikr is that it gives the heart comfort in Allah. Constant remembrance of Allah makes the heart tranquil and pleased to have Allah as its Protector and Supporter. Allah says:

الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُم بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ ۗ أَلَا بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ

[Quran 13:28]

Those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism), and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allah, Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.

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Ease and Comfort in this Life and the Hereafter

Remembrance of Allah brings ease and comfort in this life and the Hereafter. Conversely, not remembering Him brings hardship and difficulty.

Even if someone who does not remember Allah outwardly appears to lead a comfortable life where they do as they desire, eat as they desire, dress as they desire, and live as they desire; they will not find contentment. For verily, their heart will not have pure certainty but instead be riddled with confusion, agitation, bewilderment, and doubts. 

Allah says:

وَمَنْ أَعْرَضَ عَن ذِكْرِي فَإِنَّ لَهُ مَعِيشَةً ضَنكًا وَنَحْشُرُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَعْمَىٰ

[Quran 20:124]

And whoever turns away from My remembrance – indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind.”

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Protection from Shaytaan and Evil

Dhikr keeps a person away from shaytaan and his evil plots. Because shaytaan runs away from wherever the name of Allah is mentioned. But otherwise, it keeps the company of that person until it destroys him. Allah says: 

وَمَن يَعْشُ عَن ذِكْرِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ نُقَيِّضْ لَهُ شَيْطَانًا فَهُوَ لَهُ قَرِينٌ

[Quran 43:36]

And whoever is blinded from the remembrance of the Most Merciful – We appoint for him a devil, and he is to him a companion.

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Reward in this World and the Hereafter

Allah SWT rewards those who remember him with goodness and the greatest reward; Allah will give them Jannah. Those who fail to remember Allah will be punished. Allah says:

وَالذَّاكِرِينَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا وَالذَّاكِرَاتِ أَعَدَّ اللَّهُ لَهُم مَّغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

[Quran 33:35]

And the men who remember Allah often and the women who do so – for them Allah has prepared forgiveness and a great reward.

لِّنَفْتِنَهُمْ فِيهِ ۚ وَمَن يُعْرِضْ عَن ذِكْرِ رَبِّهِ يَسْلُكْهُ عَذَابًا صَعَدًا

[Quran 72:17]

So We might test them therein. And whoever turns away from the remembrance of his Lord He will put into arduous punishment.

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Leading Better Lives with Remembrance

In remembrance of Allah, we can become better people, have a healthy heart, have a happy family life, and grow stronger together as an Ummah for success in this world and the next, InshaAllah.

With this understanding in mind, we should make the effort to make the dua that the Prophet ﷺ used to say during his lifetime:

اللّهُـمَّ أَعِـنِّي عَلـى ذِكْـرِكَ وَشُكْـرِك ، وَحُسْـنِ عِبـادَتِـك

[Hisn Al-Muslim]

O Allah assist me to remember You, be grateful to you, and perfect my worship for You.

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Conjugations of Zikr (ذِكْر) found in the Quran

اذْكُرُوا
Remember
(the command to do so)

ذِكْر
Remembrance

يَذْكُرُونَ
They are remembering
(masculine only)

الذَّاكِرَاتِ
Those who remember
(feminine only)

الذَّاكِرِينَ
Those who remember
(masculine or mixed)


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Discover More Quranic Arabic Words

Has this inspired you to engage in more meaningful zikr?

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1 Comment

  1. Mujib

    Awesome

    Reply

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