Pearl of Wisdom
'The reality of prosperity is that a man's tasks conclude with success, and the reality of misfortune is that a man's tasks conclude with failure.'
Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib [as]
Ma'ani al-Akhbar, p. 345, no. 1
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Linguistically, "al-Basit" means: one who stretches his hand, be it as a gesture of good will (in order to shake hands with someone else), or otherwise (to harm someone else, be it by inflicting a physical harm on it, or by causing damage to his property or his own self). It may be applied literally or metaphorically.
The Almighty, for example, has quoted Cain son of Adam saying the following to his brother Able: If you stretch forth your hand towards me to slay me..., etc." (Quran, 5:28).>br?
It also means: to please. According to one tradition, the Messenger of Allah has said, "Fatima is part of me; whatever pleases her pleases me, and whatever displeases her displeases me, too."
Literally, it means: to relax the facial muscles in order to express pleasure and happiness, elation or excitement; all other meanings branch out of that.
Inbisat, its noun, means, among other things, abandoning modesty. "Albaseeta" is the outstretched tract of land, and "bast" is: expansion or propagation.
Al-Basit is the One Who pleases the souls by making them happy and delighted. He is the One Who plants the seeds of life in the bodies to signal the beginning of life therein. He, at the advent of resurrection, brings life back to them in order to show people, in the life hereafter, what they used to do during their temporary life in this world.
The Attribute "al-Basit" does not exist in the text of the Holy Quran, yet its derivatives certainly do; these are examples where such derivatives exist:
Nay! His hands are spread out; He expends as He pleases. (5:64) Allah has made for you the earth a wide expanse. (71:19) Allah is the One Who sends forth the winds, so they raise a cloud, then He spreads it forth in the sky as He pleases, and He breaks it up, so you see rain coming forth from it; when He causes it to pour upon whomsoever He pleases of His servants, lo, they rejoice! (30:48)
The Holy Quran speaks of decorating the bodies with strength: "... and increased you in excellence in respect of physique" (Quran, 7:69). And it speaks of pleasing through both knowledge and excellence of physique when it says, "... and He has increased him abundantly in knowledge and in physique" (Quran, 2:247).
We have to point out here that we ought to mention both divine Attributes of al-Qabid and al-Basit together in order to convey the meanings of might and wisdom. The Almighty is al-Qabid just as He is al-Basit.