It is also part of devotion and slave hood to recognize that the ability to praise Allah is a divine gift which in itself requires special praise and gratitude. When the slave praises Allah for the ability to praise Him, he must now praise Him out of gratitude for understanding this gift and so on. If the slave were to use all his breaths in praising his Lord, for the bounty upon bounty vouchsafed him by Allah, the praise that he still owes Allah, for this priceless gift of shukr (gratitude) would be far beyond what he has uttered. No one can ever enumerate the true praise owing to Allah for His priceless gifts, even if he were to praise Allah to the utmost of his capacity; for the slave is travelling towards Allah, with blessings he has received from Allah, for which he thanks Allah. And when he praises Allah for taking away a blessing he should also thank Him for inspiring him with words of praise.
In the words of a poet ‘For you in all praise, either for a blessing bestowed or for an evil averted.’
Another aspect of the devotion of Divine praise is that the slave should recognize his inability to express, or do justice to the divine praise. In fact, whatever he is able to achieve by way of praise, even that emanates from Allah. So Allah alone is deserving of praise, for it is He who causes the words of praise to flow from the slave’s tongue and heart. Had it not been for Allah, no soul would have ever received guidance.
To be continued…