Have you ever imagined how many times you say Ar Rahman Ar Rahim (the Most Merciful, The Most Gracious) in one day? We say it in Bismillah Ar Rahman Ar Rahim in every prayer, when we recite Quran, and in Surat Al Fatiha at least 17 times a day in every Rakaah without the Nafl. But have you ever asked yourself what is the meaning of it? Why Allah named Himself Ar Rahman Ar Rahim?
Allah, All Mighty, is “Raheem” (Merciful); therefore, if you strive to fulfil people’s needs, to be generous to them, to give them of that which Allah, Glory to Him, has given you, to do them some timely favours, to lend them a hand in times of need, and to stand with them in times of trouble and hardship, you are beloved and favoured by the Lord, Allah, Most Merciful. Messenger of Allah said, “He who is not merciful to people Allah will not be merciful to him.”
Types of Mercy:
There are two types of Mercy: General Mercy, special Mercy
General Mercy is the mercy that reaches all people, whether they deserve it or not, whether they are believers or disbelievers. Like rain, rain is mercy to all people, and all people benefit from it.
Special Mercy that is singled out only for those who deserve it.
Allah, Most Gracious, grant you food and drink. He allows you to enjoy your life with your wife and children. But Allah, Most merciful, does not bestow His Divine Love upon you, and He does not fill your heart with enlightenment, tranquillity or peace unless you deserve that. This means that Allah, All Mighty, has a General Mercy that He gives to all of His slaves, and a Special Mercy that He gives only to the elite of His slaves.
Allah says in Surat Al Baqara: “And [mention] when Abraham said, “My Lord, make this a secure city and provide its people with fruits – whoever of them believes in Allah and the Last Day.” [Allah] said. “And whoever disbelieves – I will grant him enjoyment for a little; then I will force him to the punishment of the Fire, and wretched is the destination.” (2:126)
So don’t measure Allah’s blessings on you with His love. If you have a family, children, good wife, a lot of money and a great social position, this doesn’t mean that Allah loves you. Allah give this present world to those whom He loves and those whom He does not love. This is Allah’s General Mercy, which embraces all things.
I have known someone who disobey his parents, which is a major sin, and because Allah always increases his income and extend his work, he thinks that Allah loves him. He doesn’t know that this mercy is general that reaches the believers as well as the disbeliever. And it is not a sign whether Allah loves you or not.
He loves you when He bestows His Special Mercy on you: “And when he (Joseph) attained his full manhood, We gave him wisdom and knowledge. Thus We reward the good-doers.” (12:22)
How to gain Allah’s special mercy?
By worshiping Allah properly. By obeying him. Doing things that He ordered us to do and stay away from things that he forbad. Allah’s Messenger said, “The good deeds of any person will not make him enter Paradise.” (i.e., None can enter Paradise through his good deeds.) They (the Prophet’s companions) said, ‘Not even you, O Allah’s Messenger’ He said, “Not even myself, unless Allah bestows His favor and mercy on me.” So be moderate in your religious deeds and do the deeds that are within your ability: and none of you should wish for death, for if he is a good doer, he may increase his good deeds, and if he is an evil doer, he may repent to Allah.”
You know that you are beloved by Allah, when you stay night in prayer. When you lower your gaze, spend your wealth in the cause of Allah. If you help the poor and needy, if you are in the help of your Muslim fellow. If your deeds are righteous, then Allah loves you.
The difference between the two names Ar Rahman Ar Rahim:
Some religious scholars say that Allah is “Rahman” (Most Gracious) in His own Divine Self. While He is “Rahim” (Most Merciful) in His Divine Acts. Others say that Allah is “Rahman” (Most Gracious) in the present world. While He is “Rahim” (Most Merciful) in the Hereafter.
If Allah is merciful why do we see oppression, tyranny, volcanoes and evil things?
Allah is merciful even though some acts appear to us as un-merciful. Same as the doctor that order to cut the leg of the patient to save his life. It may appear severe at the beginning but it is merciful because it is better for the patient.
All of this evil is related to Allah’s name Ar Rahman. Because this Name embraces both the present world and the Hereafter. If someone gets ill, he thinks that Allah is not merciful. But such pain conducts everlasting bliss.
You should know for sure that Allah does bad in order to do good. Believe that everything that happens to you that you think is evil is good in a way but you don’t know.
Obey Allah. Do what he ordered you to do. Stay away from what he forbad you from doing, in order to gain His special mercy.