Allah calls Himself Al-Baseer— The All-Seeing, The All-Perceiving, The All-Comprehending — on 42 occasions in the Quran. He is the One whose perfect sight encompasses the whole creation. Al-Baseer has insight into all things and Who perceives every detail, every state of existence, and every circumstance!
The All-and-Ever-Seeing, The Comprehending
Baseer comes from the root baa-saad-raa, which points to four main meanings. The first main meaning is to see or notice, and the second to understand. The third main meaning is to have insight or to perceive, and the fourth is to be precisely aware.
This root appears 148 times in the Quran in 10 derived forms. Examples of these forms are al-absaaru (the eyes), al-basaru (the vision), mubsiratan (visible) and absara (sees).
Linguistically, baseer is on the structure of intensification. Al-Baseer refers to the perfection and the totality of Allah’s seeing, which cannot be compared with the seeing of any other created being.
Al-Baseer Himself says: Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing. [Quran, 17:1] . . . There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the Hearing, the Seeing [Quran, 42:11] . . . And Allah judges with truth, while those they invoke besides Him judge not with anything. Indeed, Allah— He is the Hearing, the Seeing. [Quran, 40:20]
Supervision in worship and worldly affairs
An employee will most likely work harder when his manager is watching him; how much stronger is the effect when we know we are being watched by our creator? When we engage in our worldly affairs, like our job or our interactions with others, we should be aware that there is much more at stake than just the supervision of our boss or even our parents. Al-Baseer loves for the believer to do the best in every work we do, and He will recompense us in the Hereafter far beyond whatever worldly profit we might earn.
This is why the Prophet told us about the formula to live by: Allah loves that when you engage in some work, you do so with proficiency. [al-Bayhaqee] This inspires us to engage in our work with honesty and integrity and this is the best quality assurance for everything a believer does in this world.
How Can You Live by This Name?
1. Watch your deeds!
How many times have you watched your deeds when certain people were around? As a Muslim one of your tasks is to mind the acts of your limbs and your heart anytime, anywhere, and in any company. A practical tip is to imagine yourself being watched by a camera which follows you 24/7, whether you are with people or all alone. The sight of Al-Baseer cannot be topped by a hundred million cameras.
2. Trust in Al-Baseer at all times.
He sees every obstacle and sorrow you face and everything others do to you, He is the Only One Who only gives you what is good for you at all times. Therefore submit and put all your trust in Him only. Al-Baseer says: And put your trust in the Mighty, the Merciful, who sees you when you stand up (to pray) and your bowing in prostration with those who bow down. [Quran 26: 217-219]
3. Strive for quality.
Knowing that Allah sees everything you do encourages you to be more devoted in your worship, more righteous in your deeds, and kinder to others. This is why Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said: Excellence in faith is to worship your Lord as if you see Him, and though You do not see Him, know that He sees you. [Al-Bukharee, Muslim] Strive for ehsaan (excellence) in every act you do.
Al-Baseer reassured the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him and says: So wait patiently for your Lord’s decree, for surely you are in Our sight. [Quran, 52: 48] Isn’t it the most comfortable and reassuring feeling for your heart knowing as a believer Your Lord is so close to you and sees and hears everything you go through? When others do injustice to you and no one seems to notice, take strength from the fact that Al-Baseer is seeing them and will recompense them.
5. Believe in the decree of Al-Baseer.
Whenever Allah creates something, grants something, gives life, causes death, guides someone, or allows someone to stray, it is in accordance with His wisdom, His perfect knowledge, and His complete vision that nothing can escape.
Jihaad is ordained for you (Muslims) though you dislike it, and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know. [Quran, 2:216] Al-Baseer observes how you respond to His ayaat. Believe that everything Al-Baseer does is a complete tailor-made test for you and only for your own good, even though you might not like it.
6. Seek refuge in Al-Baseer.
Knowing that Allah is the All-Seeing protects the believer from committing sins. Since Allah ‘azza wa jall is taking account of everything we do, there is no escape from Him except to seek refuge with Him. Use the isti’aadhah (saying: a’oodhu billaahi minash-shaytaanir rajeem) a lot in your daily life, in times of anger, fear, and despair.
7. Ask Al-Baseer to bless your sight.
Allah Al-Baseer loves those who use the abilities He gave them for His sake. Did Allah give you eyes to look at forbidden things or to work in unpermitted business? Did He give you the blessing of understanding and having insight, like when you study, for you to be lazy and not care? Ask Him to help you to use your sight and insight only for things pleasing to Him.
8. Make dua to Al-Baseer abundantly.
Al-Baseer sees every hardship you face, so invoke Him and supplicate to Him. Remember at all times; the fact that you are able to make sujood and even say Yaa Allah is a blessing that surpasses all others.
O Allah, Al-Baseer, we know You see every move we make. Aid us to watch our deeds and use our sight and insight for Your sake only, and make us grateful for the blessings of our senses. Protect us from bad deeds, and support us in doing everything we do, in worship and worldly affairs, with excellence, ameen!
And Allah knows best.