Reminder – The Importance of The Basmalah


The Basmalah, or Bismillah, is what we utter before we begin something with the name of God, The Most Beneficent, The Ever Merciful (literal meaning). Every good action or deed should be started with reciting Bismillah. Or anything that is significant. It is often things like this, the simple things, that are oft ignored.

The Basmalah has within it many secrets, it’s like a key that unlocks greatness, in an act that otherwise is just ordinary. It is a few words, yet so many volumes have been written about it. Even to the extent of an individual letter.

Let’s turn to the traditions of the Beloved Messenger, Muhammad, upon him be countless blessings and peace.

Before Eating:

“Say Bismillah, eat with your right hand and eat what is in front of you.” [Sahih Bukhari 7/88, Sahih Muslim 2/207, Ahmad 17/92, Muwatta Malik 10/32 and Ibn Majah 1/557]

When Drinking:

Ibn Abbas (God be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of God (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “Do not drink in one gulp like a camel, but in two or three [Gulps]. Mention the Name of Allah when you start drinking and praise Him after you have finished [Drinking].” [Fath al-Bari 12/197 and Al-Trimidhi]

Beginning Of Ablution:

The Beloved Prophet (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “Make Wudu’ [Ablution (Illumination is literal and most accurate meaning] in the name of Allah” [An-Nasai 1/11 and Ibn Khuzaimah 1/84]

{Important} Before Intercourse:

The Beloved Prophet (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “If anyone of you, when having intercourse with his wife, says: In the name of Allah. O, Allah! Protect us from Satan and also protect what you grant us [i.e. Coming offspring] from Satan and if it is destined that they should have a child, then Satan will never be able to harm him.” [Sahih Bukhari 7/94 and Sahih Muslim 2/1058]

{Important} When Entering The House:

Jabir (God be pleased with him) said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (upon him be blessings and peace) saying, “If a person mentions the Name of Allah upon entering his house or eating, Satan says, addressing his followers: `You will find nowhere to spend the night and no dinner.’ But if he enters without mentioning the Name of Allah, Satan says [To his followers]; `You have found [A place] to spend the night in, and if he does not mention the Name of Allah at the time of eating, Satan says: `You have found [A place] to spend the night in as well as food.” [Sahih Muslim 2/206]

{Important} When Leaving The House:

The Messenger Of Allah (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “If anyone of you when leaving the house says In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah, there is no power and might except Allah. Your needs shall be fulfilled, you shall be saved from difficulties and hardships. Satan hearing these words leaves him.” [Al-Trimidhi 2/493]

At The Time When Slaughtering An Animal:

Anas (God be pleased with him) reported that Allah’s Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) sacrificed two horned rams of white colour with black markings over them. He also stated: I saw him sacrificing them with his own hand and saw him placing his foot on their sides, and recited in the name of Allah and Glorified Him [Bismillahi Allahu Akbar] [Sahih Bukhari 7/133, Sahih Muslim 2/181, Abu Dawud 3/230, An-Nasai 7/231, Al-Trimidhi 5/76 and Ibn Majah 2120]

When Struggling/Fighting For The Cause Of Allah:

The Messenger of Allah (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “Struggle in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah” [Sahih Muslim 2/69]

Before Entering The Toilet:

The Noble Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) said “When you enter the toilet you should say, In the Name of Allah, I seek protection in you from unclean spirits, male and female.” [Abu Dawud 4/264, Ahmad 2/389 and Fath Al-Bari 1/254]

Saying Bismillah Causes Humiliation To The Devil:

Abul Malih said: I was riding on a mount behind the Prophet (upon him be blessings and peace). It stumbled. Thereupon I said: May the devil perish! He said: Do not say: May the devil perish! For if you say that, he will swell so much so that he will be like a house, and say: By my power. But say Bismillah for when you say that, he will diminish so much so that he will be like a fly. [An-Nasai 6/142, Ahmad 5/59 and Abu Dawud 4946]

**{Important} When Night Falls:

The Beloved Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “When night falls (Maghrib) stop your children from going out, for the devils spread out at that time. But when an hour of the night (Maghrib) has passed, release them and close the doors and mention Allah’s Name, for Satan does not open a closed door. Tie the mouth of your water-skin (today perhaps your bottles) and mention Allah’s Name; cover your containers and utensils and mention Allah’s Name. Cover them even by placing something across it, and extinguish your lamps (turning off the lights). ” [Sahih Bukhari 7/527 and Abu Dawud 3722]

** This mentions some very important aspects. First, children should not be allowed out at Maghrib time. There many wisdoms in this. But then the Messenger of Allah (upon him be blessings and peace) mentions covering your bottles, containers, utensils, turning off the lights, and closing or opening doors. These things are everyday actions yet we’re told to say Bismillah before them. Why? You enter into the fortress of the Mercy and Protection of God. It bars Satan from getting involved.

For example, the doors. What door is the most significant? Car door perhaps? House doors? I’d think it is the doors that contain things within them. Like the fridge!! Our food should be pure from the hands of Satan. If we eat without Bismillah, we invite his crew to eat. Likewise, if you ignore the fridge door. He has already got to you before your going to eat.

When Entering The Body Of The Deceased In The Grave:

The Prophet of Allah (upon him be blessings and peace) said, “When you are lowering the deceased in the grave you should say In the name of Allah and in accordance to the Sunnah [Tradition] of the Messenger of Allah.” [Ahmad 8/58 and Al-Hakim 1/366]

The Virtue Of Saying Bismillah:

‘Uthman bin Abu al-As Al-Thaqafi reported that he made a complaint of pain to the Beloved Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) that he felt in his body at the time he had become Muslim. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (upon him be blessings and peace) said: “Place your hand at the place where you feel pain in your body and say in the name of Allah three times and seven times I seek refuge with Allah and with His Power from the evil that I find and that I fear”. [Sahih Muslim 2/280]

When Writing A Letter {email etc}:

Abu Sufyan said that the contents of the letter were as follows: “In the name of Allah the Beneficent, the Merciful, [This letter is] from Muhammad the slave of Allah and His Apostle to Heraclius the ruler of Byzantine. Upon him be blessings and peace, who follows the right path. Furthermore I invite you to Islam, and if you become a Muslim you will be safe, and Allah will double your reward, and if you reject this invitation of Islam you will be committing a sin by misguiding your Arisiyin [Peasants].” [Sahih Bukhari 4/191, Sahih Muslim 2/91 and Al-Trimidhi 7/500] [Queen Sheba] said O chief! Surely an honorable letter has been delivered to me Surely it is from Sulaiman, and surely it is in the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful; [Al-Quran, Surah Al-Naml, Ayahs 29-30]

These are just snippets but we see how we can easily miss these aspects.