Thinking and Talking God: A Common Muslim-Non-Muslim Problem

Aug 1, 2012

Muslims Have a Problem – and So Do Non-Muslims

Muslims have a problem. Non-Muslims have a problem. They all have a problem.

And it is not what most people may think it is – whatever people may think it is. I am talking about a very different problem, and which to me is at the core of all other problems anyone, Muslim or non-Muslim, may have in this world.

I am referring to Dhikr Allah – thinking of God. They just don’t do enough of it. Neither group does. Not the Muslims, not the non-Muslims.

They just don’t think about Allah enough.

They don’t talk about Allah enough.

They don’t mention Allah enough.

They don’t remember Allah enough.

They don’t do Dhikr Allah enough.

Allah Is God!

Allah, of course you know, is God – God Almighty; the one and only. The only God there is – or can be.

Allah is the God of the Old Testament.

Allah is the God of the New Testament.

And Allah is the God of all Divine Scripture; and of all the Divine Messengers and Prophets in every place and in every age.

Fa-dhaalikumullah – as the Qur’an says: He is Allah!

He is God – the Almighty: the one and only.

Thinking God: Dhikr Allah

So, the big Muslim problem is that Muslims don’t think about God enough, which also is coincidentally – or maybe not so coincidentally – the big non-Muslim problem.

They just don’t do enough Dhikr Allah – whether it is at the individual, group, regional, national or international levels.

I don’t know how Muslims got into this sorry situation. But that to me is the biggest Muslim problem.

One Single, Unified Ummat

Along, of course, with all the other big and little problems the Muslims may have, in any particular place or time – or as an Ummat.

Ummat is God’s word for the timeless and universal Nation of Believers in God. And that Ummat, according to the Qur’an and the God of the Qur’an, is one.

Hear God say it and then tell me which part of it is not clear or confusing.


Inna haadhihi ummatukum ummatan waahidatan wa ana rabbukum fa’abudooni.


“This Ummat of yours is one single unified Ummat, and I am your Rabb – lord, master, maker, owner, sustainer, cherisher, as Yusuf Ali calls him – so, serve, obey and worship me.”

Muslims of course went ahead and did with it what they have done with much else: they changed it.

For Some, Two Ummats

Now, there are those among Muslims who shamelessly and blatantly use expressions such as these: Al-ummatain al-Arabiyyah wal-Islamiyyah.

“The two nations: Arabic and Islamic!”

Hello! And you tell me there aren’t Muslims among us who change the Qur’an, and who do Tahreef to the Qur’an?

And, get this, not a murmur of protest from any quarter. Not one whimper or squeak!

And then you complain God did this to you, and did that to you, and did something else to you?

And then there are all those good Muslims – in fact great Muslims – who frown upon my criticizing the Muslims. What can I say?

And of course Ummat also simply means a nation or people – any nation or people of any kind.

In Qur’an, even animal species are Ummats – just like us.

Illaa umamun amthaalukum, is how the Qur’an phrases it.

Subhanallah, how beautiful this Qur’an is! And how clear!

Who but God could produce a book like that!

How Is It Conceivable?

So, I find it utterly incomprehensible that anyone who believes in God even an iota will not be thinking, talking, mentioning, remembering and doing Dhikr of God all the time.

How is such a thing even conceivable – that you will say you believe in God, and you love God, and yet you will not think, talk, mention and remember God all the time?

Well, if not all the time, even though that is what I mean, let us call it as much as they can possibly make it.

If you want to know how to spend every moment of your life – waking as well as sleeping – doing Allah’s Dhikr, and don’t miss a beat, talk to me. For, that is what Islam is all about.

God Is God!

What we all must realize is that God is God. And he is everybody’s God. Muslims’ as well non-Muslims’.

So, whatever fight Non-Muslims may have with Muslims – rightly or wrongly – it should not spill over to God. For God is nobody’s God in particular, in the sense of being exclusive to them. And yet he is everybody’s God – in equal measure. Commonly shared by everyone of God’s creation.

More so than any loving parent that is every child’s parent – in equal measure.

So, the children may quarrel all they want among themselves. But they should not burn their bridges to their parent.

In the same way, humans should not burn their bridges to God – no matter what their quarrel with any of their fellow- or sibling-creation of God.

Muslim or Not, Memorize These Two Words: Dhikr Allah!

Dhikr Allah is one of the greatest miracles of Islam – a living and present miracle, not one that is dead and gone centuries ago.

And it shows as conclusively and clearly as you can expect to have anything in this world that this Islam – and this noble and glorious Qur’an; and this Rasul, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam; and this pure and perfected Hadith – can only come from God. And there is no earthly possibility any of it could have been cooked up by a human agency.

Yes, talk to me, and I will walk you step by step through it all and show you, item by item, how crystal clear and how irrefutably overpowering it all is.

And remember the expression is Dhikr Allah. Doesn’t matter you are a Muslim or not, just memorize these two simple words: Dhikr Allah. It is good for you.

If there is a God, it works for you. If there isn’t, then, hey, you lose nothing. You come out ahead either way.

It Is Ali’s Idea – Radiyallahu ‘Anhu

Don’t blame me or give me credit for this thought. I took it from Sayyidina ‘Ali, Radiyallahu ‘Anhu, when he challenged the Scientist (Munajjim: Astronomer) and the Doctor (Twabeeb: Physician), advancing precisely this argument.

What simple and yet most overpowering logic!

Ali, Radiyallahu Anhu, which means “May God be pleased with him,” outlined two possibilities and said to the Astronomer and the Physician – in verse of course, in which Ali, Radiyallahu Anhu, was just great as in so many other things:

  1. “If there is no God, and if there is no Resurrection and no Day of Judgment, then, as a Believer, I lose nothing.”
  2. “But if,” Ali, may God be pleased with him, continued: “If it turns out, and if we find out after death, that there indeed is a God, then you will be in jeopardy, don’t you think?”

    Fal-wabaalu ‘alaikumaa, is how he said it.

How simple and yet how powerful – this logic of Ali, Radiyallahu Anhu!

What Does It Cost to Say It?

It costs you absolutely nothing – to say these things: to do Allah Almighty’s Dhikr I mean.

For, this is one thing you can do walking, talking, sitting – all the time. Easier than chewing gum in fact while you walk – or even talk, as some people do.

So, people – Muslim and non-Muslim – let us get on with it. Let us learn to do the Dhikr of Allah. Let us start now.

God Is with You – When You Do

That is right. You read it right. That is the Hadith of Sayyidina Rasulullah, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam.

Ana ma’ahoo idha dhakaranee: I am with him when my slave (you and me, and all other human beings) does my Dhikr – when he calls on me; when he thinks about me; when he mentions me; when he talks about me.

It sends my head spinning, this part of that Hadith – that God can be with me, and all I have to do is to think or talk about him?

Then pray tell me, what mad man or woman would ever stop thinking or talking about God – doing his Dhikr that is – any moment of his or her life?

A Piece of Poetry

A poet once put it rather nicely. It isn’t the greatest poetry in the world, this particular one I mean, but the concept fits with what we are saying. These Urdu poets have a way of saying things – and Arabic and Persian or Farsi poets as well – which others can hardly match.

Here goes:

Mayri zindagi ka haasil, mayray shawuq ka sahaara;
Wahi lamha zindagi ka, tayray saath jo guzaaraa!


“The moment I spent in your company is what gives meaning to my whole life.”

So, don’t forget what Allah says, that he is with you when you think or talk about him.

So, let us go ahead and get some Dhikr done.

1. Say: Alhamdulillah!

Alhamdulillah: All and every manner of praise belongs to God! That is what it means.

Of course, who else deserves any praise of any kind for anything?

There is nothing more profound in this world than this expression of gratitude to Allah. For two simple reasons: A, for every good thing he has given you; and, at the same time, B, for keeping every bad thing away from you.

And who can do that if not God?

There is no better way of saying “Thank You!” to God than to say: Alhamdulillah!

That is why the Hadith calls it “Kalimat Shukr.”

And that is also why the Prophet, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, called it the best Du’a – the best prayer – there is.

I have worked out the formula. It is the neatest thing in the world: Just take what God gives; pocket it; say Alhamdulillah; pocket what comes next; say Alhamdulillah again; and so on ad infinitum – forever and ever and ever.

How can you possibly go wrong with something like that?

Did you know Alhamdulillah is from the Qur’an? Directly so?

Wow, how fortunate you are that God himself is teaching you how to thank him.

So, just say: Alhamdulillah! Just as the Qur’an says: Fa-qulilhamdulillah!

And keep saying it.

Does it matter who you are: Muslim or non-Muslim? A good or a bad person?

You have got an opportunity to talk to your God – prompted and coached by none other than him. So, grab this opportunity and say: Alhamdulillah!

2. Say: Subhanallah!

Subhanallah! This again is from the Qur’an. And it states the obvious.

It says: All glory belongs to God – Hallelujah!

It says God Almighty is free from all imperfections and impurities and defects and deficiencies and he is beyond all limitations and constraints!

Well, ask yourself who else can any glory really belong to? Who else has anything or does anything that is in any way spectacular or remarkable?

Who else is there that is not full of imperfections, limitations and impurities?

So, who deserves glory but God? And how pure and perfect he is!

So, forget everything and say: Subhanallah!

Talk to your God and tell him how wonderful and amazing he is. He is waiting to hear from you. How can you not take advantage of this opening and whisper to him Subhanallah?

Or scream out at the top of your lungs if you felt like it.

3. Say: Allahu Akbar!

Allahu Akbar! Again, a most obvious fact – as self-evident as it gets.

While God’s creation is amazing and tantalizing in every way, God himself is greater. He is greater than anything we know. And he is greater than anything anyone can think of or imagine.

That is why he is God, right? Because the buck stops with him? Because God is where all things find their perfection.

As the Qur’an says: He is the one in whom all the most beautiful qualities and names and properties inhere and find their final fulfillment and perfection.

The glorious words of the Qur’an are: Wa lahul asmaa-ul husnaa.

So, every time you get an opportunity, say: Allahu Akbar!

Say it all the time.

4. Say: Laa Ilaaha Illa Allah!

It is not for nothing it is called the finest Dhikr. And these are God’s own words – directly from the Qur’an.                                                  

Know!” God says in the Qur’an: Fa’lam!

Fa’lam annahoo laa ilaaha illallah: Know that there is no God but God!

Wow, what a place that would be: to know that there is no God but God. It is given to those God wants.

Once again, it is obvious – and most compellingly so – is it not, that there can be only one topmost person, occupying the very summit of power and glory and existence?

How many principals does a school have? How many presidents does a country have? How many prime ministers?

How many popes are there in this world?

How many tallest peaks do the Himalayas have? And how many deepest parts do the Pacific and the Atlantic have?

So, how many gods do you think there are or can be?

That is why God says, Fa’lam – Know! For, what could be more self-evident than that?

Moses said it – and so did his followers.

Jesus said it – and so did his followers.

Muhammad said it – and so do his followers to this day.

So, what is holding you back?

Just say Laa Ilaaha Illa Allah!

You know well, deep down in your own heart, that your tongue could never utter a greater and more self-evident truth.

So, say Laa Ilaaha Illa Allah! And live happily ever after, both in this world and the next.

So, Muslim or Not, Do Some Dhikr

So, Muslim or not, learn these four absolutely, positively divine ways of thinking and talking about God, of doing Allah’s Dhikr that is – Alhamdulillah, Subhanallah, Allahu Akbar and La Ilaaha Illaa Allah – and get on with it.

Feel and enjoy God’s company as you do it. And reap the rich benefits of it – both in this world and in the next world.

Muslims and non-Muslims of the world: Settle your mutual differences and fights short of letting them affect your remembrance of Allah – your ability to do Dhikr of Allah.

Don’t let anything get between you and your God.

And if you are hungry for more, I can throw in other things like Hasbiyallah! and Laa hawula wa laa quwwata illaa billah!

But more of that later.

Did you know Laa hawula wa laa quwwata illaa billah! is a cure for 99 ailments, least of which is worry and anxiety and fear of the future?

So, Muslims and non-Muslims of the world, go and get some Dhikr done.


 © 2012 Syed Husain Pasha

Dr. Pasha is an educator and scholar of exceptional 
talent, training and experience. He can be reached at DrSyedPasha [at] 
AOL [dot] com or

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