78. Al-Muta’ali المتعالي

Allah (SwT) has said,

“[He is] the One Who knows the unseen and the seen, the Great, the Most High” (Qur’an, 13:9).

The root word of al-Muta’ali is ‘uluww, height, sublimity, loftiness. Its verb also means one who feels proud, or even arrogant, with regard to someone else, and this usage is for humans. We have already discussed the Attribute al-’Aliyy, which is also derived from the same root word. Al-Muta’ali is Exalted in His Greatness and Honors, an Exaltation which nobody reaches besides Him.

His Honor is above what any of His creation can conceive or comprehend, above what His creatures describe, measure, compute, or define.

Al-Muta’ali is Sublime and is above everything due to His might or perfection. He, Glory to Him, is Most High due to His Greatness. It also means that He is high above deficiencies or shortcomings, or above being conceived by anyone’s imagination. He is very, very High above all His creatures. He does not need any of what He creates or what He did or does not create; He created them out of His Munificence. His Compassionate Attribute is surely gloriously manifesting itself to all what He has created. He does not need the worship of those who worship Him; He makes His grace available to all those who strive to attain it.

Al-Muta’ali is above the falsehood of the conceited, by necessity is Lofty and Sublime. His rank is the Most High; He has the authority all of it. He is Proud and Great. His Glory is too High to be comprehended or conceived by His creation.

One who keeps remembering the Attribute al-Muta’ali ought to fashion his conduct according to it by his determination to worship none but Allah (SwT). One who adorns his manners as such will then remember the persecuted and the downtrodden and does his best to help them, so their condition will hopefully improve. According to one tradition,”A wretch indeed is a servant of Allah (SwT) who fancied himself and became conceited, forgetting the Great One, al-Muta’al.”

Our second Imam, al-Hassan ibn Ali (‘a), says that his grandfather, the Messenger of Allah (S), had taught him a few supplications to recite during his witr prayers such as this:

Lord! I plead to You to guide me among those whom You have guided, to grant me good health among those whom You have granted, to befriend me among those whom You have befriended! I further implore You to bless what You have granted me, to shun from me the evil of what You have decreed in my regard, for You decree while none can force his decree on You! Surely none can humiliate those whom You have befriended; Blessed, Lord, are You and Exalted exceedingly.