Al-Samad pronounced as
(The Absolute Master and Refuge for all, The Self-Sufficient)
The Following explanation of Al-Samad (As-Samad) is from the commentary of surah Al-Ikhlaas in Tafheemul-Quraan. The translation of surah Al-Ikhlaas:
بِسۡمِ اللهِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِيۡمِ
قُلۡ هُوَ اللّٰهُ اَحَدٌ ۚ
لَمۡ يَلِدۡ ۙ وَلَمۡ يُوۡلَدۡ ۙ
وَلَمۡ يَكُنۡ لَّهٗ كُفُوًا اَحَدٌ
(112:1) Say:1 “He is Allah,2 the One and Unique;3
(112:2) Allah, Who is in need of none and of Whom all are in need;4
(112:3) He neither begot any nor was He begotten,5
(112:4) and none is comparable to Him.”6
Explanation of the Attribute “As-Samad” from Tafheemul-Quraan:
Exp. note 4:
4. The word used in the original is samad of which the root is smd. A look at the derivatives in Arabic from this root will show how comprehensive and vast this word is in meaning. (Lexical discussion of the meanings of the derivatives is omitted).
On the basis of these lexical meanings the explanations of the word as-Samad in the verse Allah-us-Samad, which have been reported from the companions, their immediate successors and the later scholars are given below:
Ali, Ikrimah and Kab Ahbar: Samad is he who has no superior.
Abdullah bin Masud, Abdullah bin Abbas and Abu Wail Shaqiq bin Salamah: The chieftain whose chieftaincy is perfect and of the most extraordinary kind.
Another view of Ibn Abbas: Samad is he to whom the people turn when afflicted with a calamity. Still another view of his: The chieftain who in his chieftaincy, in his nobility and glory, in his clemency and forbearance, in his knowledge and wisdom is perfect.
Abu Hurairah: He who is independent of all and all others are dependent upon him.
Other views of Ikrimah: He from whom nothing ever has come out, nor normally comes out, who neither eats nor drinks. Views containing the same meaning have been related from Shabi and Muhammad bin Kab al-Kurazi also.
Suddi: The one to whom the people turn for obtaining the things they need and for help in hardships.
Saeed bin Jubair: He who is perfect in all his attributes and works.
Rabi bin Jubair: He who is immune from every calamity.
Muqatil bin Hayyan: He who is faultless.
Ibn Kaysan: He who is exclusive in His attributes.
Hasan Basri and Qatadah: He who is ever-living and immortal. Similar views have been related from Mujahid, Mamar and Murrat alHamadani also.
Murrat al-Hamadani’s another view is: He who decides whatever He wills and does whatever He wills, without there being anyone to revise his judgment and decision.
Ibrahim Nakhai: He to whom the people turn for fulfillment of their desires.
Abu Bakr al-Anbari: There is no difference of opinion among the lexicographers that samad is the chief who has no superior and to whom the people turn for fulfillment of their desires and needs and in connection with other affairs. Similar to this is the view of Az-Zajjaj, who says Samad is He in whom leadership has been perfected, and to whom one turns for fulfillment of his needs and desires.
Now, let us consider why Allahu-Ahad has been said in the first sentence and why Allah-us-Samad in this sentence. About the word ahad we have explained above that it is exclusively used for Allah, and for none else. That is why it has been used as ahad, in the indefinite sense. But since the word samad is used for creatures also, Allah-us-Samad has been said instead of Allah Samad, which signifies that real and true Samad is Allah alone. If a creature is samad in one sense, it may not be samad in some other sense, for it is mortal, not immortal; it is analyzable and divisible, is compound, its parts can scatter away any time; some creatures are dependent upon it, and upon others it is dependent; its chieftaincy is relative and not absolute; it is superior to certain things and certain other things are superior to it; it can fulfill some desires of some creatures but it is not in the power of any creature to fulfill all the desires of all the creatures, On the contrary, Allah is perfect in His attributes of Samad in every respect; the whole world is dependent upon Him in its needs, but He is not dependent upon anyone; everything in the world turns to Him, consciously or unconsciously, for its survival and for fulfillment of the needs of everyone; He is Immortal and Ever-living; He sustains others and is not sustained by anyone; He is Single and Unique, not compound so as to be analyzable and divisible; His sovereignty prevails over entire universe and He is Supreme in every sense. Therefore, He is not only Samad but As-Samad, i.e. the Only and One Being Who is wholly and perfectly qualified with the attribute of samad in the true sense.
Then, since He is As-Samad, it is necessary that He should be Unique, One and Only, for such a being can only be One, which is not dependent upon anyone and upon whom everyone else is dependent; two or more beings cannot be self-sufficient and fulfillers of the needs of all. Furthermore, His being As-samad also requires that He alone should be the Deity, none else, for no sensible person would worship and serve the one who had no power and authority to fulfill the needs of others.