Three Litanies You Cannot Do Without
Habib `Ali ibn Hassan al-`Attas said:
There are three litanies that the intelligent person must never part with, due to the immense benefits contained within them for this world and the Afterlife:
1. To recite before the Dawn [fajr] prayer 100 times:
سبحان الله وبحمده سبحان الله العظيم ،استغفرالله
subhanAllahi wa bihamdihi, subhan-Allah-il-`azim, astaghfirullah
Glory be to God and in His praise, glory be to God, the Formidable, I seek forgiveness from Him.
This is the how the Angels seek forgiveness [istighfar].
2. To recite the following after the Afternoon [zuhr] prayer 100 times:
لاإله إلا الله الملك الحق المبين
la ilaha ill-Allah al-Malik al-Haqqul-Mubin
There is no God except for Allah, the King, the Truth that makes all things manifest.
The Prophet ﷺ mentioned that whoever recited this formula would be safe from poverty and it would be a source of comfort for him from the loneliness of the grave.
3. To recite the following before sleeping:
Transcendent is God (33x times)
All praise is due to God (33x times)
God is the Greatest (34x times)
Then one recites right after –
لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللهُ وَحْدَهُ لَا شَرِيكَ لَهُ، لَهُ الْمُلْكُ وَلَهُ الْحَمْدُ وَهُوَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
la ilaha ill-Allah, wahdahu la sharika lah, lahul-mulku wa lahul-hamd, wa huwa `ala kulli shay’in qadir
There is no god worthy of worship but God, Alone, He has no associates, to Him belongs the Kingdom and to Him belong all praise, and He is capable of all things.
This is the litany that the Prophetﷺ taught his daughter, Sayyidah Fatima and also Sayyidina `Ali (may God be pleased with them both).*
Some of the scholars have said that there are immense secrets within this litany.”
* This third litany is also known as the “Tasbih al-Fatimiyya” as it is attributed to our Liege-lady Fatima after her father ﷺ taught it to her once she complained of being tired from housework and chores; she sent Imam `Ali over to ask for a servant to help them out at home. So he ﷺ informed both her and her husband to recite this litany every night before she sleeps and that she will have no need for a servant to help her with her chores.