Introduction

by clicking on the rose above you can access an index of the ninety-nine
names or qualities of God, derived from the holy Qur'an. This will be familiar to
most muslims. There is no absolute consensus on the exact list, or indeed the
actual number of names - but that given below is widely accepted. They are
taken from the book of Dr Zahurul Hassan Sharib "The 99 Most Beautiful
Names of Allah" which is available in Dutch as "De 99 Schone Namen van
Allah" the English version of which is shortly to be published in New Delhi. I
have incorporated the Arabic script from the hand of an unknown calligrapher,
and at least one Qur'anic source. To this I have added comments made by
Al-Ghazali probably the most authoritative source in this field. I have further
added related thoughts from a variety of sources, including suggestions of my
own.

The effects of appropriate recitation are given but I have not specified the
particular method - this is available in the book by Dr Sharib.

Al-Ghazali quotes an hadith 'You should be characterised by the
characteristics of God Most High' and Dr Sharib follows him in elaborating on
what is required to emulate the specified quality. He points out that these
names, though interrelated in meaning, are not synonymous, since names are
not intended for their letters or external differences, but rather for their
implication.
The list does not include the name of Allah (the Essence) in the numbering -
treating it separately.

Dr Sharib says :

"Allah is the name of the Essence and the 99 most beautiful names are the
attributes or the qualities of Allah....According to some scholars "Allah" is
the "al-ism al-azam", the greatest name."

As regarding the effect of the names Shah Wali Ullah of Delhi says this:

"The divine names.... assume the form of luminous bodies in the
Similitudinary World, and there the angels obey them. When the Changer
(God) turns them by some kind of personal intention towards itself and pulls
them to the desired object, they incline towards it and the angels who are the
servants of the divine names yield to them."

Lamha 27. Sufism and the Islamic Tradition Trans: Jalbani. Octagon Press. 1980

Dr Sharib says:

"According to the Sufis, one name of Allah manifests, dominates and
exercises sovereign control at (all) times. The name of Allah rules and
governs the universe. The name manifests His kingdom. When the period
of the rule and manifestation of one name comes to an end, then the turn
comes for the rule and manifestation of another name. The Qur'an says:
"Everyday He is upon some task." (Qur'an 5:29.)

To the Sufis this refers to the manifestation of one name."

8.5 The Culture of the Sufis by Dr Zahurul Hassan Sharib Sharib Press. 1999.

Dedication

On the occasion of the 'Urs of Khawaja Muinuddin Hasan Chishti we
respectfully seek the blessings of the august servants of Allah on this work
praying that they will overlook its numerous faults and cause it to be of benefit
to sincere seekers of God.
We humbly dedicate our labours to Dr Zahurul Hasan Sharib of Ajmer, whose
affectionate look and approval we earnestly seek, and to Nuri Baba of Konya
to whose inspired guidance we are also eternally indebted.
 
  God! There is no god
  But He! To Him belong
  The Most Beautiful Names.

                                                 (Qur'an 20:8 )

Jamiluddin Morris Zahuri
Southampton. August 27th 2002

Acknowledgments

This none profit-making, on-line version of the 99 Beautiful Names owes
gratitude to the various sources quoted and those who have laboured in
making translations, and we ask the One and Only Owner of the Names to
reward those sources according to His Wisdom.

We gladly acknowledge the fastidious work of Mohammed Siraj Elschot in
processing the original manuscript of Dr Sharib's work, but take on ourselves
the blame for any faults found within this expanded version with its various
additions.