On the other hand, if a word is used in a metaphorical sense - in other words a meaning or connotation that is not the primary use of the word - then this is the majaazee meaning. For example, to apply the word 'offspring' to include grandchildren is a majaazee meaning.
Examples that are given of majaaz in the Qur`aan are the verses, "And lower unto them (one's parents) the wing of submission and humility through mercy..." (17:24) (the use of 'wing' is majaazee, for there is no actual wing); "And ask the town where we were..." (12:82) (the 'town' with its houses and walls is not asked, but rather the 'people of the town' are asked, another example of majaaz); and, "...a wall that wished to collapse..." (18:77) (the wall itself did not 'wish' to collapse, but rather was very close to collapsing). It should be noted that there are a number of scholars throughout history, such as Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 724 A.H.), and Muhammad al-Ameen as-Shanqeeti (d. 1393 A.H.), who denied the existence of majaaz in the Qur`aan (and in the Arabic language), and this has been and still is a topic of debate among the scholars.
However, even if it is claimed that there are majaazee verses in the Qur`aan, the Attributes of Allaah can never claimed to be examples of majaaz for the following reasons:
1) All verses and words are always taken in a haqeeqee manner unless there is reason or proof to believe otherwise. This fact is agreed upon by all linguists. Thus, in order to say that the 'Throne of Allaah' is majaazee for 'Power', one needs to bring clear proof from Qur`aan or sunnah to prove this point. In lack of this evidence, the word will be interpreted in a haqeeqee sense, viz., that Allaah has a Throne, but it cannot be imagined by humans. Concerning this particular example, the understanding of the 'Throne of Allaah' as being haqeeqee is proven by many other verses, such as the verse, "...and His Throne was over the water..." (11:7); and, "And you will see the angels surrounding the Throne from all sides..." (40:75); and, "The (angels) who bear the Throne, and the (angels) around it, glorify the praises of their Lord..." (40:7); and, "...eight angels will, on that Day, bear the Throne of your Lord above them" (69:17). All these verses clearly show that the Throne of Allaah is a haqeeqee throne, for how else was it above water, and how else will the angels surround it, and eight angels hold it, unless it is a haqeeqee Throne? Can it be imagined that the 'Power' of Allaah was over water, and that angels will surround the 'Power', and eight angels will carry this 'Power'? In addition, there are numerous authentic hadeeth that clearly signify that the Throne is a haqeeqee throne. Likewise, all the other Attributes of Allaah can be proven in a similar manner.
2) It is not appropriate that the fundamentals of faith, such as the Names and Attributes of Allaah, be revealed in unexplicit and vague language. Rather, it is essential that these fundamentals of faith be revealed in the clearest and most explicit language; in a manner that leaves no room for doubt, confusion or ambiguity. To claim that Allaah, all Praise and Glory be to Him, revealed His Names and Attributes in majaazee form is, in reality, to claim that Allaah did not explain His Names and Attributes properly, but rather hinted at them in vague, couched language; in language that, outwardly, appears to mislead and deceive, rather than guide and instruct (all Praise is due to Allaah, He is above all that they ascribe to Him!). The Qur`aan describes itself in many verses as being a shining light; a revelation in clear, simple Arabic; a Book that guides mankind; that takes him from the darkness to the Light; is it possible that one of the most important topics of faith - that of the Names and Attributes of Allaah - is revealed in such obscure and vague language?
3) The very concept of majaaz rests upon the perceived and well-known. In other words, when it is said, "And ask the town...," the only reason that the reader understands, without any doubt, that it is not the actual town that is asked, but the people of the town, is that it is well-known that towns cannot be asked questions - it is the people who are asked. Likewise, when it is said, "Zayd was a lion during the battle," the only reason that it is understood that Zayd was not an actual animal during the battle is that Zayd is well-known not to be an animal, and thus, it is understood from this that Zayd was a very brave person. The point that is trying to be made is that majaaz can only be used when the subject is well-known and understood, and thus there is no danger that a person might be confused between the haqeeqee meaning and the majaazee one. In matters of the unseen, however, such as the Attributes of Allaah, majaaz simply cannot be applied, due to the fact that the Attributes of Allaah cannot be perceived or fully understood by the creation. Since there can be no analogical relationship between the Attributes of Allaah and those of His creation, there can be no majaaz when it comes to describing the Attributes of Allaah.
4) One of the ways in which majaaz is defined is: Majaaz is that which is permissible to negate. Therefore, when the phrase, "Zayd was a lion on the battlefield" is heard, it is possible to say, "No, Zayd was not a lion. He was a brave person." If it were claimed that the Attributes of Allaah are majaaz, it is as if a person is allowed to deny what Allaah has said (i.e., if a person says that the verse, "...both of His hands are outstretched..." (5:64) is majaaz, in essence this person claims that it is possible to say, "No, both of Allaah's hands are not outstretched," thus clearly and explicitly going against the verse in the Qur`aan).
5) To claim that some of the verses that mention Allaah's Attributes are majaazee is, in essence, to claim that all of the verses that mention Allaah's Attributes are majaazee. What is there that makes these scholars consider some Attributes of Allaah as majaaz (for example, the wajh, yad, 'ayn, and istiwaa) and others as haqeeqee (such as the Knowledge, Life, Hearing and Seeing of Allaah)? Just as these scholars acknowledge that Allaah has the Attributes of Knowledge, Life and others, but these Attributes are not similar to those of the creation, they should also acknowledge that Allaah has a wajh, yad, and other Attributes, but these are different than the wajh and yad of the creation. If they claim that some of the verses that mention Allaah's Attributes are majaazee, there is no defence if someone were to claim that all the verses mentioning Allaah's Attributes are majaazee.
Of course, all of these points come after the fact that all the scholars of the salaf were of the opinion that Allaah's Attributes are haqeeqee, and are affirmed as Allaah Himself affirmed them, but that they do not resemble at all the attributes of the creation.
In conclusion, Ibn 'Abd al-Barr (d. 463 A.H.) stated, The Ahl as-Sunnah have unanimously agreed in affirming those Attributes (of Allaah) that are found in the Qur`aan or sunnah, and believing in them, and understanding them as haqeeqee, not as majaazee, except that they do not explain the 'how-ness' of these Attributes, nor do they limit them to a particular manner. As for the people of innovations, from the Jahmiyyah, and the Mu'tazilah, and the Khawaarij, then they deny these Attributes, and they do no understand them in a haqeeqee manner. And they presume that one who affirms these Attributes is an anthropomorphist (i.e., giving human-like qualities to Allaah)! In reality, those who affirm these Attributes (the Ahl as-Sunnah) consider these people to be deniers and negators (of Allaah's Attributes), not affirmers! And the truth in this matter is with those people who say what the Qur`aan and sunnah says (i.e., affirm these Attributes)...
After quoting this, Imaam ad-Dhahabi (d. 748 A.H.) stated, "He has spoken the truth - I swear by Allaah!! He who misinterprets all these Attributes, and carries what has been narrated of them upon majaaz, will eventually end up negating the Creator of all (His Attributes), and comparing Him to non-existent objects... [ad-Dhahabi, al-Uluww, p. 269]