Updated: Dec 4, 2018
Bismillah is one of the most oft-repeated phrases we utter. Have you ever wondered why? What makes Bismillah so powerful? Why are we encouraged to always initiate something good with Bismillah? Here's a little insight into how it should shape our attitudes and practically affects us . . .
One thing we as Muslims say all the time is "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ" "Bismillaah-irRahmaan-irRaheem"
"Bismillah . . ." is usually translated as "With/By/Using the name of Allah . . . " Now, I'm going to get a little technical in the grammar, having said that, I'm hoping even non-Arabic students will be able to appreciate the lesson contained within Bismillah. (Ignore the technical terms if you've never come across them before)
Grammatically speaking, بِ is connected to اسۡمِ - (Jaar Majroor)
Now اسۡمِ is connected to the word ٱللهِ - (Idaafah)
Then the word ٱللهِ is connected to ٱلرَّحِيمِ & ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ - (Mawsoof Sifah 1 & 2.
What I'm trying to get at is that all of these words are connected in "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ "
Which means . . . All of "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ" is one complex, compound, fragment. A phrase.
"With the name of Allah, the exceedingly Merciful, the always Merciful" - That's what we're saying here.
So what is a fragment? The definition of a fragment is; "More than a word but less than a sentence."
This whole "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ", even though it's made up of multiple fragments, is still one complex fragment, as they are all connected together.
Which means. . . "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ" is actually not a sentence.
And if it's not a sentence, then in a sense it is not complete. It's incomplete.
Only sentences are complete language. You can't just leave a sentence half way.
If you're talking to someone and you say, for example, "In the house . . . " Just saying "In the house" is not a complete sentence.
"The keys are in the house" would actually be a complete sentence.
So Now, here's the point.
The fact that "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ" is not a complete sentence is huge! There is a profound lesson in this!
Because it is what you do after you say "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ", that makes it complete.
In other words. "In the name of Allah, The exceedingly Merciful, the always Merciful, I eat"
You do the act of eating, and that very act of eating is actually what completes "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ"
That means, even if you flip it around, it still holds true.
Let me explain.
For you to start eating and not saying this phrase before hand, the act of eating was incomplete.
Anything you do, anything you recite, without "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ", it is incomplete.
Bismillah is what actually makes the rest of it whole.
That is why Allah left it incomplete. It is what comes after, that makes it whole.
And that thing itself becomes whole because of it. We ask Allah to grant Barakah in all our actions and efforts.
May Allah make us a people of "بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ" by invoking his name of exceeding love, exceeding care, and his Constant love and care.
May Allah pour his love, his care, his mercy in everything we do in his name. Aameen!