The Names of Allah: al-Ghanī – explanation of Imam al-Sa’di

Imam ‘Abd al-Rahman bin Naasir al-Sa’di, in his work discussing the names and attributes of Allah, writes the following on Allah’s name al-Ghanīالغَنِيّ ) – which is often rendered into English as ‘The One Who is Free of Need’, ‘The Rich’, ‘The Sufficient’, ‘The Self-Sufficient’ and other similar translations:

 قال تعالى : يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ أَنْتُمُ الْفُقَرَاءُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ هُوَ الْغَنِيُّ الْحَمِيد

Allah said: “O mankind, you are those in need of Allah, while Allah is the Free of need (Al-Ghanī), the Praiseworthy (al-Hameed).” [35:15]

فهو الغني بذاته، الذي له الغنى التام المطلق، من جميع الوجوه، والاعتبارات لكماله، وكمال صفاته

So He is The One Who is Free of Need in His essence, who is completely and unequivocally Free of Need in all aspects and completely in all respects, and His attributes are perfectly complete.

فلا يتطرق إليها نقص بوجه من الوجوه، ولا يمكن أن يكون إلا غنياً، لأن غناه من لوازم ذاته، كما لا يكون إلا خالقاً قادراً رازقاً محسناً فلا يحتاج إلى أحد بوجه من الوجوه

So no loss occurs to Him from any angle, and it is not possible for Him to be anything except free of need, because His freedom from need is a intrinsic part of His essence, just as He cannot be anything except the Creator, the Irresistibly Compelling, the Provider, the Excellent. So He does not have need of anyone in any way. Continue reading

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