The glorified name; ALLAH and the properties of this name
The name of the owner of this universe and the Sultan of the palace of this realm is ALLAH. And when He mentions about Himself in His book, He calls “Anallah” which means “I am Allah”.
There are some properties that differentiates this name from other names. Now let us try to analyze them:
-The first verse of the Qur’an which is revealed is Basmala (Bismillahirrahmanirrahim). And the name of Allah is the first name among the three names that exists in Basmala. So the name of Allah is the first name revealed in the Qur’an.
-The name of Allah is the main name in al-Asma al-Husna. (the most beautiful names of Allah.) Other names are attributed to this name. For example, “ash-Shafi” (the Curer) can be called a name of Allah but it cannot be said that Allah is a name of ash-Shafi”. Or “ar-Rahman" (the all merciful) can be called a name of Allah but it cannot be said that “Allah is a name of ar-Rahman.”
-The name of Allah is a proper name. It cannot be used for any other person even in a metaphorical way. This name is peculiar to Allah and only refers to Him. Even the Pharaoh who claimed divinity said “Ana Rabbukumul a’la” which means “I am your glorious lord” but could not say “Anallah” (I am Allah!”). He could not dare to use the name of Allah when he used the name “Rab” (Lord) of Allah.
Again, Meccan polytheists placed 360 idols in and around the Kaaba and they named them differently but they never called any of them Allah. So, this name belongs to Allah only.
-Becoming a believer is possible with Kalima ash-shahadah.Kalima ash-shahadah, which is the bases of belief, is only accepted with the name of Allah. For example, when a non-Muslim says “Ashadu an la ilaha illa'r Rahman” or “Ashadu an la ilaha illa'l Malik” instead of “Ashadu an la ilaha illa'llah…” in order to become a Muslim, he is not considered to have become a Muslim. Because, the name of Allah is a special name that expresses the personality of the Glorious One who is unique and has no partners. It is not possible to think the meaning of partnership for private names. For this reason, there is real tawhid (oneness) in this name. As for the other names, there is no such real tawhid and the oneness of Allah is not acknowledged with them; so belief is not accepted.
-If the letters that constitutes the name of Allah are removed one by one; the meaning is still not broken down. However,this feature does not exist in other names. For example, when the Arabic letter “mim” is removed from the name of al-Malik, the remaining part “lik” has no meaning at all. Or when the letter of “sad” is removed from the name of as-Samad, there remains only “mad” and this has also no meaning, either.
However, in the name of Allah, there is a quality of bringing together. For example:
* When alif is removed from the beginning, it becomes “lillah” and this also means Allah.
* When the first lam is removed from “Lillah”, it becomes “Lahu” and this also refers to Him.
* When this “lam” is removed, it becomes “hu” and this refers to Allah again.
* And when the hidden “waw” is removed in “hu”, "he" remains, this also refers to Allah. For the root of “hu” is “he”. “Waw” is not the origin but an addition. In fact, because of this secret, every living creature commemorates Allah while breathing as “he, he, he”.
-In the meaning of Allah, there is a quality of bringing together. This does not exist in other names. Other names only refer to one meaning. For example, the name of “Hadi,” only means “the guider”, the name of “Nafi” only means “the propitious” and the name of “Khaliq” only means “the creator”. However, the name of Allah expresses the whole meanings of them as well as the other names.
When we say the sun, we remember a source of light that has seven colors, warmth and light and something that does not have these attributes cannot be the sun.
Similarly, when the name of “Allah” is mentioned, the holy personality that has all perfect attributes and names comes to mind. Something that does not have these names and attributes cannot be called Allah.
Since, He is Allah; He is attributed with all perfect attributes. That is why, someone who says “Allah” by thinking all these names is regarded to have commemorated the Almighty Creator with all of His names and attributes
Can Allah be called God?
In this section, we are going to see the evidence that Allah cannot be called God:
- According to the creed of Ahl as-Sunnah, the names of Allah cannot be changed. That is, it is permissible to say the names which are informed by Allah but it is not permissible to say what is not informed. For example, Allah is called al-`Alim (The All-Knowing) but He cannot be called faqih which has the same meaning. And again, Allah is called al-Jawad which means the generous but He cannot be called sahi which has also the same meaning. For, Allah does not introduce Himself with the names of faqih and sahi. For this reason, it is not permissible to say God instead of Allah. Imam Ghazali says that since we cannot give a name to a person as we would like to, how can we dare to do such a thing for Allah?
-God means deity. For example, it is said that the god of many Hindus is the ox and for Zoroastrians is the fire. In other languages, different words are used for god and deity. However, the name of Allah is used exactly in foreign translations. For, the equivalent of this name does not exist in any language.
-Though the name of Allah is mentioned 2806 times in the Qur’an, the word god it is not mentioned even once. While our Almighty Creator repeatedly says in the Qur’an, “My name is Allah, call me with the name of Allah; worship me by calling Allah and beg me by calling Allah but He does not say in any verse, "I am God or call me God." The word god is not mentioned in hadiths, either. Then, it is so clear that it is wrong not to call Allah with the name that He wanted but to call Him god, which is the name the polytheists use while associating partners with Him and for their false gods.
A ruler says his name as Ahmad to his servants and orders them to call his name as Ahmad; suppose that despite this order, they say that they want to call him Uthman instead of Ahmad since both of them are names alike and call him like that; as a result the ruler will get angry; similarly, it will cause Divine wrath when the word god is used for His name and in worship though the name god is not ordered by Him or may be disliked by Him.