ʿAbd  (عبد) (for male)  ʾAmah  (أمة) (for female)

Servant or worshipper. Muslims consider themselves servants and worshippers of Allah (swt) as per Islam . Common Muslim names such as Abdullah (Servant of Allah), Abdul-Malik (Servant of the King), Abdur-Rahmān (Slave of the most Beneficent), Abdus-Salām (Slave of [the originator of] Peace), Abdur-Rahîm (Slave of the most Merciful), all refer to  names of Allah (swt).
ʾAdab  (أدب)
Traditionally describes good manners, as in etiquette. For example, being courteous is good ʾadab. However, the term can be used very broadly, and the proper translation would be “the proper way to go about something,” as in the example, ʾĀdāb al Qitāl, or, “The Proper Ways of Fighting in War,” (Qitāl in Arabic means mortal combat) in which the word “etiquette” does not befit the context. A secondary meaning of ʾAdab is “literature”.
ʾAdhān  (أذان)
call to salat  (prayer), sometimes alternatively spelled and pronounced Azaan, Athaan and Adhan.
ʿAdl  (عدل)
 justice , especially  distributive justice :  social, economic, political, proprietary.
AH  (هجرية)
Anno Hegirae The Islamic calendar starts counting years starting from the time when Muhammad (saw) had to leave Mecca and go to Medina, an event known as the  Hijra . The first day of the first Islamic year is 1  Muḥarram  1 (AH) and corresponds to 16 July 622 ( CE ).
ʾAḥad  (أحد)
literally “one”. In Islam, ahad means One Alone, unique, none like God. Al-Ahad is one of the names of God.
ʾAḥkām  (أحكام)
These are rulings and orders of the Qu’ran and Sunnah. A single ruling is called a  Ḥukm . Five kinds of orders:  Wajib  or  Fard  (obligatory),  Mustahab  (preferred and recommended),  Halal  or  Mubah  (permissible),  Makruh  (disliked and not recommended), and  Haram  (forbidden)
ʾAhl al-Bayt  (أهل البيت)
members of  Muhammad’s (saw) Household. Also known among Shia as the Maʿṣūmūn (معصومون) (infallibles; spiritually pure).
ʾAhl al-Fatrah  ( أهل الفترة)
people who live in ignorance of the teachings of a revealed religion, but according to the “Fitra”, the “Natural Religion” innate to human nature as created by God.
ʾAhl al-Kitāb  (أهل الكتاب )
“People of the Book”, or followers of pre-Islamic monotheistic religions with some form of  scripture  believed to be of divine origin which were mentioned in Quran:  Jews ,  Christians .
ʾĀkhirah  (الآخرة)
 hereafter  or eternal life
ʾAkhlāq  (أخلاق)
The practice of virtue. Morals.
Al-ʾIkhlāṣ (الإخلاص)
Sincerity and genuineness in religious beliefs.
Al-Bir (البّر)
Piety and righteousness and every act of obedience to  Allah (swt).
 ʿĀlamīn  (عالمين)
Literally “worlds”, humankind, jinn, angels and all that exists.
 Al Hijr (Kaaba)  (الكعبة)
A semi-circular wall north-west of Kaaba.
ʿalayhi -s-salām (عليه السلام)
“Peace be upon him” This expression normally follows after naming a prophet (other than Muhammad (saw), or one of the noble Angels (i.e.  Jibreel  (Gabriel),  Meekaal  (Michael), etc.)
 al-ḥamdu li-llāh  (الحمد لله)
“Praise be to God!” Qur’anic exclamation and also same meaning as hallelujah.
 Allāh  (الله)
The name of God according to Islam. Also used as the Arabic word for God in general.
 Allāhumma  (اللَّهُمَّ)
“O Allah, my Lord” – used in a phrase or salutation, invocations or supplications ( dua ).
 Allāhu ʾAkbar  (الله أكبر)
“Allah is [the] greatest”. Greater than anything or anyone, imaginable or unimaginable.
 ʿĀlim  (عالِم)
lit. One who knows. A scholar (in any field of knowledge) ; a  jurist  or  scientist  (who knows  science ) or a  theologian  (who knows  religion ); similar to  Japanese   sensei , “teacher”.
 ʾAmānah  (أمانة)
the trust. Of all creation, only human beings &  jinns  carry the “trust”, which is free will.
 ʾĀmīn  (آمين)
 Amen .
 ʾAmīr ul-Muʾminīn  (أمير المؤمنين)
“Commander of the Faithful” Historically the title of the Caliph. In some modern countries like  Morocco , a ʾAmīr ul-Muʾminīn or Commander of the faithful is the religious chief.
 ʾĀminah  (آمنة)
Prophet’s (saw) mother. Aminah fell sick and died in  Abwa , near  Madina  (then  Yathrib ) when the Prophet was six years old.
 Al-ʾAmr Bi’l Maʿrūf  (الأمر بالمعروف)
Islamic doctrine of enjoining right. There exists in Islam the (obligatory) principle of encouraging other people to do the right thing.
ʾAnfāl (أنفال)
Spoils of war. (See Sūrat al-ʾAnfāl (8:1))
 ʾAnṣār  (أنصار)
“Helpers.” The Muslim converts at Medina who helped the Muslims from Mecca after the Hijrah.
 ʿAqīdah  (عقيدة)
Article of faith, tenet, creed, or dogma.
 ʿAqīqah (عقيقة) 
Islamic practice of shaving the head of the newborn male and contributing the weight in silver for charity as well as 2 lambs.
 ʿAql  (عقل)
Intelligence, intellect, mind, understanding
 ʾArkān  singular  rukn  (ركن/أركان)
The five  rukn  “pillars” of Islam. (See  rukn )
A.S. (ʿAlayhi s-salām) (عليه السلام)
This acronym evokes a blessing and is appended to the names of the prophets who came before Muhammad (saw). It will also be applied to the mothers of those prophets. When following a woman’s name, the feminine form is ʿAlayha s-salām.
 Arabic elative term , “more correct.” Used by muslim scholars to introduce their own view while not entirely dismissing that of others.
ʾAṣl ( أصل ) (pl. ʾuṣūl)
Root, origin, source; principle.
 ʾaslim taslam  (أسلِم تسلَم)
“Submit to Islam” (See  dawah )
 ʾAsmāʾ Allāh al-Ḥusnā  (أسماء الله الحسنى)
List of God’s 99 names. According to a hadith, the one who enumerates them all will enter Paradise.
 ʿAṣr  (العصر)
The third salat prayer. The time of the day before sunset and after noon. Also means “era”.
 Aṣ-Ṣirāṭ  (الصراط)
The bridge by crossing which it is determined (judged) whether a person would go to heaven or hell. How a person crosses the Sirat depends on what they have done in their life and what they have believed in.
 al-ʿAsharatu Mubashsharun bil-Jannah  or just ʿAsharatu Mubashsharah ( Arabic 
العشرة المبشّرون بالجنة‎,  romanized : ʿAsharatu l-mubashshirūn or Arabic: عشرة المبشّر‎, romanized: Asharatul-mubashshirūna bil Jannah): The ten companions of Muhammad (saw) who were promised paradise (only in  Sunni Islam )
 ʿĀshūrāʾ  (عاشوراء)
Tenth day of the month of  Muharram . It is the day God saved Moses (as) and the children of Israel from the Pharaoh. The grandson of Muhammad (saw), Imam Hussayn (ra) sacrificed his life along with 72 of his companions on the sand dunes of  Karbala . Sunni Scholars recommended to fast during this day. To the Shias, it is also a day on which they mourn the death of the third  Shia Imam, Husayn ibn Ali , along with his family and companions, who were killed in the famous battle in  Karbala . They cry and weep and organize lamentating programmes where they not only learn how to live a proper Islamic life and improve their Spiritual Self but also cry at the end of the ritual to show their true love and faith towards imam Hussayn (ra).
 As-Salāmu ʿAlaykum  (السلام عليكم)
The Islamic greeting; literally “Peace be upon you”; In addition, wa-Raḥmatullāhi wa-Barakātuhu (ورحمة الله وبركاته) means “and the Mercy of God and His blessing”. The response to this greeting is wa-ʿAlaykum as-Salām wa-Raḥmatullāhi wa-Barakātuhu (وعليكم السلام ورحمة الله وبركاته) –“And on you be the Peace and Mercy of God and His Blessing”.
 ʾAstaghfir allāh  (أستغفر الله)
“I seek forgiveness from God.” Islamic expression.
Aʿudhu billah (أعوذ بالله ʾAʿūdhu billāh)
“I seek refuge in God”. This is a paraphrase on the beginnings of the two last suras in the Qur’an.
 ʾAwliyāʾ  (أولياء)
Friends, protectors, helpers, caretaker, maintainer. (singular: wali)
 ʿAwrah  (عورة)
The parts of the body, male or female, must be covered in public but not between spouses, such as, body parts must be concealed of a woman before non-related men.(Non-related men means those she can marry lawfully).
 ʾĀyah  (آية), plural ʾāyāt (آيات)
A sign. More specifically, a verse in the Qur’an.
 Āyatullāh  (آية الله, also spelled Ayatollah)
Sign of God Title given to highly ranked religious scholars in  Sh’ia  sect.


Baiʿa (بيعة)
See Bay’ah
Baatil (باطل)
see Bāṭil
 Baitullāh  (بيت الله baytu -llāh)
A mosque, literally “house of God”. Specifically means the Ka’aba at Makkah (Mecca).
a group known as the Weepers, who wept because they could not accompany  Muhammad (saw) to Tabuk .
 Barakah  (بركة)
a form of blessing, thought derive from God and passed on others via prophets, angels and saints.
Bārak Allāhu Fīkum (بارك الله فيكم)
may Allah bless you; response to expression of thanks.
 Barzakh  (برزخ)
Barrier. Used in the Qur’an to describe the barrier between sweet and salty water. In theology, the one-way barrier between the mortal realm and the spirit world which the deceased soul crosses and waits for  qiyamah  judgment.
 Bashar  (بشر)
humankind, mankind, man, human(s), etc.
 Baṣīrah  (بصيرة)
Insight, discernment, perceptivity, deep knowledge. Sometimes used by  Sufis  to denote the ability to directly perceive a transcendental Truth.
Bāṭil (باطل)
 Bāṯin  (باطن)
The interior or hidden meaning. A person who devotes himself to studying such hidden meanings is a batini.
B.B.H.N. (عليه الصلاة والسلام)
Blessed be His Name – acronym for S.A.W.S. See P.B.U.H (Peace Be Upon Him).
 Bidʿah  (بدعة)
Innovation in religion, i.e. inventing new methods of worship. Bad Bidʿahs in Islam are considered a deviation and a serious sin by many Muslims.
Bidʿah sayyiʾah (بدعة سيئة)
Inquiry prohibited in Islam.
 Bismi-llāhi r-raḥmāni r-raḥīmi  (بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم)
“In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful”.
Burda (بردة)
In general terms, it means a “cloak” or “outer garment”. Specific reference is to the “burda” of Muḥammad (saw) (see  Qaṣīda al-Burda ).
 Bayʿah  (بيعة)
an  oath of allegiance  to a leader, traditionally the  Caliph , a  Sheikh  or an  Imam .


 Caliph  (خَليفة) khalīfah
literally successor; refers to the successor of Muhammad (saw), the ruler of an Islamic theocracy.


Dahri (دهري)
 atheist  – from the root ad dahr meaning time. In Islam, atheists are seen as those who think that time only destroys, hence the term ad dahriyyah or simply dahriya for the concept of atheism.
 Dajjāl  (دجّال)
The Islamic equivalent of the  Antichrist ; means “liar” or “deceiver”.
 Ḍallāl  (ضلال)
going astray.
 Dār al-ʿAhd  (دار العهد)
the Ottoman Empire’s relationship with its Christian tributary states.
 Dār al-ʾAmn  (دار الأمن)
means house of safety.
 Dār ad-daʿwa  (دار الدعوة)
a region where Islam has recently been introduced.
 Dār al-ḥarb  (دار الحرب)
means house of war; refers to areas outside Muslim rule which a Muslim state can go to war with simply for not being muslim.
 Dār al-Islām  (دار الإسلام)
the abode, or land, of Islam.
 Dār al-Kufr  (دار الكفر)
means domain of disbelief; the term originally refers to the  Quraish -dominated society of Mecca between Mohammed’s flight to Medina (the Hijra) and the  city’s conquest .
Dār aṣ-Ṣulḥ ( دارالصلح )
domain of agreement
 Dār ash-shahāda  (دار الشهادة)
See Dar al-Amn
 Darūd  (الدرود، الصلاة على النبي)
 Daʿwah  (الدعوة)
the call to Islam,  proselytizing .
 Darwīš  (درويش)
an initiate of the Sufi Path, one who practices Sufism
 Dhikr  (ذكر)
A devotional practice whereby the name of God is repeated in a rhythmical manner. Remembrance of God; spiritual exercise; Muslims believe that the primary function of prophets is to remind people of God. It is also pronounced zikr.
 Dhimmi  (ذمّي) (pl. dhimam)
“protected person”;  Jews  and  Christians  (and sometimes others, such as Buddhists, Sikhs, Hindus, and  Zoroastrians ), living in an Islamic state who must pay a separate tax instead of the  zakah  paid by Muslims and this exempts non-Muslims from military service under Islamic law.
 Dhuhr  (ظهر) (ẓuhr)
the second obligatory daily prayer.  Performed after sun passes its zenith.
 Dīn  (الدين)
(literally ‘religion’) the way of life based on Islamic revelation; the sum total of a Muslim’s faith and practice. Dīn is often used to mean the faith and religion of Islam.
Diyyah (دية)
“blood money”, recompense for loss of a life.
 Duʿāʾ  (دعاء)
personal prayer, supplication
 Dunya  (دنيا)
The physical Universe, as opposed to the Hereafter; sometimes spelled Dunia.


 Eid al-Fitr  (عيد الفطر)

Marks the end of Ramaadaan [Ramzaan], the Islamic holy month of fasting (sawm).

 Eid al-Adha

Honors the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son Ismael as an act of obedience to God’s command.


divine grace
 Fajarah  (فجرة) (also fujjār (فجّار))
Wicked evil doers. Plural of “fājir” (فاجر).
 fājir  (فجر)
dawn, early morning, and the morning prayer. The time of the day when there is light in the horizon before sunrise.
 Falāḥ  (فلاح)
deliverance, salvation, well-being.
Falsafah (فلسفة)
“philosophy” The methods and content of Greek philosophy which were brought into Islam. A person who tries to interpret Islam through rationalist philosophy was called a faylasuf (فيلسوف), “philosopher”.
 Fanā’  (فناء)
 Sufi  term meaning extinction – a spiritual death of the lower self (Nafs) with associated bad characteristics. Having no existence outside of God.
 Faqīh  (فقيه)(pl. fuqahāʾ)(فقهاء)
One who has a deep understanding of Islam, its laws, and jurisprudence. (see fiqh)
Al-Faraj (الفرج)
the return of the Shia Mahdi
 Farḍ  (فرض), plural furūḍ (فروض)
a religious duty, or an obligatory action: praying 5 times a day is fard Neglecting a fard will result in a punishment in the hereafter. (See  wajib )
 Farḍ ʿain  ( فرض عين)
obligatory on every individual Muslim to aid in any way he can.
 Farḍ kifāyah  (فرض كفاية)
an obligation on the Muslim community as a whole, from which some are freed if others take it up such as for jihad.
 Fāsid  (فاسد)
corrupt, invalid/violable (in Islamic finance)
 Fāsiq  (فاسق)
anyone who has violated Islamic law; usually refers to one whose character has been corrupted (plural “fāsiqūn”).
 Fātiḥa  (الفاتحة)
the short, opening sura of the Qur’an, which begins “In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate. Praise be to God, the Lord of the Worlds…” These words hold an important place in Muslim liturgies and forms the core of the salat.
 Fatwā  (فتوى)
a non-binding legal opinion of a scholar ( alim ). However, binding on him for those who follow his  taqlid 
Fī ʾAmān allāh (في أمان الله)
“In the protection of God”. Said when a person departs.
 Fiqh  (فقه)
 jurisprudence  built around the  shariah  by custom ( al-urf ). Literally means “deep understanding”, refers to understanding the Islamic laws. (see faqih)
 Fī sabīl allāh  (في سبيل الله)
for the sake of Allah; common Islamic expression for performing acts such as charity or  Jihad  and for ‘qatlu’ (fighting in mortal combat for the sake of Allah)
 Fitna  (pl. fitan) (فتنة)
trial or  tribulation ; also refers to any period of disorder, such as a civil war, or the period of time before the  end of the world  or any civil strife.
 Fiṭrah  (فطرة)
innate disposition towards virtue, knowledge, and beauty. Muslims believe every child is born with fitrah.
Furqān (فرقان)
the criterion (of right and wrong, true and false); for example, the Qur’an as furqan.
Fuwaysiqah (فويسقة)
vermin, evil from the root fasaqa meaning to deviate from the right way


 Ghafara  (غفر)
(verb in past tense) to forgive, to cover up (sins). A characteristic of God.
 Ghaflah  (غفلة)
heedlessness, forgetfulness of God, indifference
 Ghayb  (غيب)
the unseen, unknown.
Ghanīmah (غنيمة)
spoils of war, booty.
 Gharar  (غرر)
excessive uncertainty; also “the sale of what is not present” such as fish not yet caught, crops not yet harvested.
Ghasbi (غصب)
possessed unlawfully
 Ghāzi  (غازى)
(archaic) roughly, “raider”: used for whose who participated in  jihad  (war). Later a title for  veterans .
 Ghusl  (غسل)
full ablution of the whole body (see  wudu ). Ghusl janaba is the mandatory shower after having sexual discharge.


 Ḥadath akbar  (حدث أكبر)
major ritual impurity which requires Niyyat for cleaning.
 Ḥadath aṣghar  (حدث أصغر)
minor ritual impurity
 Hādhā min faḍl rabbī  (هَذَا مِن فَضْلِ رَبِّي)
Qur’anic expression and phrase meaning This is by the Grace of my Lord.
 Hādī  (هادي)
a guide, one who guides; A Muslim name for God is The Guide, or Al-Hadi.
 Ḥadīth  (حديث ḥadīth) plural ahādīth
literally “speech”; recorded saying or tradition of Muhammad (saw) validated by isnad ; with seerah  these comprise the  sunnah  and reveal  shariah 
 Ḥadīth mashhūr  (حديث مشهور)
Well-known hadith; a hadith which reported by one, two, or more Companions from Muhammad (saw) or from another Companion, but has later become well-known and transmitted by an indefinite number of people during the first and second generation of Muslims.
 Ḥāfiẓ  (حافظ)
someone who knows the Qur’an by heart. Literal translation = memorizer or Protector.
Ḥaiḍ (حيض)
Ḥājj (حاجّ) plural Ḥujjāj (حجّاج) and Ḥajīj (حجيج)
Pilgrim, one who has made the Hajj.
 Ḥajj  (حجّ) and Ḥijjah (plurals Ḥijjāt (حجّات) and Ḥijaj (حجج))
pilgrimage to  Mecca . Sunnis regard this as the fifth  Pillar of Islam . See  Dhu al-Hijjah .
Ḥajj at-Tamattuʿ (حج التمتع)
performing ʿUmrah during the Hajj season, and on the Day of Tarwiah a pilgrim gets into the state of Ihram for Hajj. Before making ʿUmrah, approach the  Miqat  and declare the intention. End by sacrificing an animal.
 Ḥajj al-Qirān  (حج القران)
At  Miqat , declare intention to perform both Hajj and ‘Umrah together. After throwing the Jamrah of Al-‘Aqabah, and getting hair shaved or cut that take off his Ihram garments and sacrifice animal.
 Ḥajj al-ʾIfrād  (حج الإفراد)
At  Miqat , declare intention for Hajj only. Maintain Ihram garments up to the Day of Sacrifice. No offering is required from him.
 Ḥākim  (حاكم)
a ruler’s or governor’s title; in some Muslim states, a judge. See  Ahkam .
 Ḥākimīya  (حاكمية)
sovereignty, governance.
 Ḥalāl  (حلال)
lawful, permitted, good, beneficial, praiseworthy, honourable. (See  mustahabb ,  mandub )
 Ḥalaqah  (حلقة)
A gathering or meeting for the primary purpose of learning about Islam.
Ḥalq (حلق)
Shaving of the head, particularly associated with pilgrimage to  Mecca
 Ḥanīf  (حنيف)
pre-Islamic non-Jewish or non-Christian monotheists. One who follows the way of Abraham (as). Plural: ḥunafā’ (حنفاء).
 Ḥaqq  (حقّ)
truth, reality, right, righteousness. Al-Haqq is one of  99 names of God .
 Ḥarām  (حرام)
 Ḥaram  (حرم)
 Ḥasan  (حسن)
Good, beautiful, admirable. Also a categorization of a hadith’s authenticity as “acceptable”. (other categorizations include authentic and fabricated).
Hawa (هوى) (pl. ʾahwāʾ (أهواء))
Vain or egotistical desire; individual passion; impulsiveness.
 Hidāyah  (هداية)
guidance from God.
 Ḥijāb  (حجاب)
literally “cover”. It describes the covering of the body for the purposes of modesty and dignity; broadly, a prescribed system of attitudes and behaviour regarding modesty and dignity.
Different types:  abayah ,  al-amira,  burqa ,  chador ,  jilbab ,  khimar ,  milfeh ,  niqab ,  purdah ,  shayla
 Hijra  (الهجرة)
Muhammad (saw) and his followers’ emigration from  Mecca  to  Medina . Literally, “migration”. This holiday marks the beginning of the Muslim New Year on the first day of the month of Muharram. See  Rabi’ al-awwal  and abbreviation  AH .
 Ḥikmah  (also Hikmat) (حكمة)
Literally this means “wisdom” and refers to the highest possible level of understanding attainable by a Muslim. In particular, it refers to the illuminative, mystical sort of wisdom that a Gnostic or Sufi might attain.
 Hilāl  (هلال)
Crescent moon.
 Ḥima  (حمى)
 wilderness reserve , protected  forest , grazing  commons ; a concept of  stewardship 
 Ḥizb  (حزب)
One half of a  juz’ , or roughly 1/60th of the  Qur’an 
 Hudā  (هدى)
 Hudna  (هدنة)
Truce. Cease-fire (often temporary)
 Ḥudūd  (حدود) (sing. hadd)
Literally, limits or boundaries. Usually refers to limits placed by Allah (swt) on man; penalties of the Islamic law ( sharia ) for particular crimes described in the Qur’an – intoxication, theft, rebellion, adultery and fornication, false accusation of adultery, and apostasy. (See ta’zeer)
 Ḥukm  (حكم)
ruling in the Qur’an or Sunnah. Also spelled Hukum.
 Ḥūrī  (حورية ḥūrīya; pl. ḥūrīyāt حوريات)
beautiful and pure young men and women that Muslims believe inhabit Paradise, or Heaven.


 ʿIbādah  (عبادة)
submission, worship, but not limited to ritual: all expressions of servitude to Allah, including the pursuit of knowledge, living a pious life, helping, charity, and humility, can be considered ibadah.
 ʾIblīs  (إبليس)
 Devil  banished to Hell for his arrogance and disobedience; aka  Satan .
 ʿId (عيد) 
festival or celebration. Alternatively transliterated Eid.
 ʿId ul-Adha  (عيد الأضحى)
“the Festival of Sacrifice.” The four-day celebration starting on the tenth day of  Dhul-Hijja .
 ʿId ul-Fitr  (عيد الفطر)
“the Festival of Fitr (Breaking the fast).” A religious festival that marks the end of the fast of  Ramadan .
 ʾIfṭār  (إفطار)
a meal eaten by Muslims breaking their fast after sunset during the month of Ramadan.
 ʾIḥrām  (إحرام)
state of consecration for  hajj . Includes dress and or prayer.
 ʾIḥsān  (إحسان)
perfection in worship, such that Muslims try to worship God as if they see Him, and although they cannot see Him, they undoubtedly believe He is constantly watching over them.
ʾIḥtiyāṭ (إحتياط)
Also Ahwat. A Precaution, either obligatory or optional.
ʾIḥtiyāṭ mustaḥabb(إحتياط مستحبّ)
A preferred precaution.
ʾIḥtiyāṭ wājib(إحتياط واجب)
An obligatory precaution.
 ʾIʿjāz  (إعجاز)
miracle, the character of the Qur’an in both form and content.
 ʾIjāzah  (إجازة)
a certificate authorizing one to transmit a subject or text of Islamic knowledge
 ʾIjmā’  (إجماع)
the  consensus  of either the  ummah  (or just the  ulema ) – one of four bases of  Islamic Law . More generally, political consensus itself. Shi’a substitute obedience to the Imam; opposite of  ikhtilaf 
 ʾIjtihād  (اجتهاد)
During the early times of Islam, the possibility of finding a new solution to a juridical problem. Has not been allowed in conservative Islam since the Middle Ages. However,  Liberal movements within Islam  generally argue that any Muslim can perform  ijtihad , given that Islam has no generally accepted clerical hierarchy or bureaucratic organization. The opposite of  ijtihad  is  taqlid  (تقليد), Arabic for “imitation”.
 ʾIkhtilāf  (اختلاف)
disagreement among the madhhabs (scholars) of a religious principle; opposite of  ijma .
ʾIkrām (إكرام)
honouring, hospitality, generosity – Dhul jalaali wal ikraam is one of the 99 names of Allah (swt).
 ʾIkrāh  (إكراه)
mental or physical force.
 ʾIlāh  (إله)
deity, a god; including gods worshiped by polytheists.
 ʿIlm  (علم)
all varieties of  knowledge , usually a synonym for  science 
 ʾImām  (إمام)
literally, leader; e.g. a man who leads a community or leads the prayer; the  Shi’a  sect use the term only as a title for one of the twelve Allah-appointed successors of Muhammad (saw).
 ʾImāmah  (إمامة) or  imamate 
successorship of Muhammad (saw) and the leadership of mankind.
 ʾImān  (إيمان)
personal faith
 ʾInna lilāhi wa ʾinna ʾilaihi rājiʿūn  (إِنَّا لِلّهِ وَإِنَّـا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعونَ)
To Allah we belong and to Him is our return – said to mourners
 ʾInfāq  (إنفاق)
the habitual inclination to give rather than take in life; the basis for charity
 ʾInjīl  (الإنجيل)
Arabic term for the holy book called The Gospel said to have been given to Jesus, who is known as Isa (as) in Arabic; Muslims believe the holy book has been lost and the New Testament gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) are not the word of Allah (swt), only Christian stories about Jesus (as).
 ʾIn shāʾa -llāh  (إن شاء الله)
“If God wills”; Inshallah is “resigned, accepting, neutral, passive. It is neither optimistic nor pessimistic.”
 ʾIqāmah  (إقامة)
the second call to prayer. Similar to the azhan.
 ʾIrtidād  (ارتداد)
apostasy (see murtadd). Also riddah ردة
 ʿĪsā  (عيسى)
Jesus – ‘Isa ibn Maryam (English: Jesus son of Mary), (a matronymic since he had no biological father). The Qur’an asserts that Allah (swt) has no sons and therefore, ‘Isa is not the son of Allah. Muslims honor ‘Isa as a  nabi  and  rasul .
 ʿIshā’  (عشاء)
night; the fifth salat prayer
 ʾIṣlāḥ  (إصلاح )
“reform”. This term may mean very different things, depending on the context. When used in reference to reform of Islam, it may mean modernism, such as that proposed by Muhammad Abduh ; or  Salafi  literalism, such as that preached by  Muhammad Nasiruddin al-Albani
“submission to God”. The Arabic root word for Islam means submission, obedience, peace, and purity.
 ʾIsnād  (إسناد)
chain of transmitters of any given  hadith 
 ʾIsrāʾ  (الإسراء)
the night journey during which Muhammad (محمّد) is said to have visited Heaven. See miraj .
 ʾIstighfār  (استغفار)
requesting forgiveness
 ʾIstiḥādah  (استحاضة)
vaginal bleeding except  Haid  and  Nifas 
 ʾIstiṣlāḥ  (استصلاح)
public interest – a source of  Islamic Law .
 ʾIstishhād  (استشهاد)
 ʾIthm  (إثم)
Negative reward for bad deeds that is tallied on  qiyamah  (judgment day.) Opposite of thawab.
 ʾIʿtikāf  (إعتكاف)
seclusion in the masjid for the purpose of worship usually performed during the last 10 days of Ramadan.
 ʾItmām al-hujjah  (إتمام الحجة)
clarification of truth in its ultimate form.
 Ittaqullah  (اتقوا الله)
command to fear God or to be pious to Allah (swt).


Jāʾiz (جائز)
That which is allowed or permissible. As a rule, everything that is not prohibited is allowed. (See halal, mustahabb, mandub)
 Jahannam  (جهنم)
the Hell-fire; Hell
 Jāhilīyyah  (الجاهليّة)
the time of ignorance before Islam was realized. Describes polytheistic religions.
 Jahl  (جهل)
ignorance, foolishness.
 Jalsa  (جلسة)
 Jāmiʿah  (جامعة)
“gathering”; i.e. a university, a mosque, or more generally, a community or association.
 Janābah  (جنابة)
A state of spiritual impurity that occur due to sexual intercourse or ejaculation and necessitates major ritual ablution (ghusl),
Janāzah (جنازة)
Funeral.  Ṣalāt al-Janāzah  is a funeral prayer.
 Jannah  (جنة)
Paradise, Heaven, the Garden
 Jazāka-llāhu khayran  (جزاك اللهُ خيرًا)
“May God reward you with good.” Islamic expression of gratitude.
 Jihād  (جهاد)
struggle. Any earnest striving in the way of God, involving personal, physical, for righteousness and against wrongdoing;
 Jihād  aṣ-ṣaghīr (جهاد الصغير)
Offensive jihad declared by caliph.
 Jihād  aṭ-ṭalab (جهاد الطلب)
Offensive jihad.
 Jihād  ad-dafʿa (جهاد الدفعة)
Defensive jihad.
 Jihād  bil-māl (جهاد بامال)
Financial jihad.
 Jihād  bis-saif ( جهاد بالسيف)
literally ‘struggle by the sword’; holy war.
 Jilbāb  (جلباب)
(pl. jalabib) a long, flowing, garment worn by some as a more conservative means of fulfillment of  sartorial hijab . (See also:  abaya .  burka ,  chador )
 Jinn  (جنّ)
Term for invisible beings, considered to roam the earth.
 Jizya  (جزية)
A tax specified in the Koran (9:29) to be paid by non-Muslim males living under Muslim political control.
Juḥod (جحود)
To deny. Jaahid (the denier). Disbelief out of rejection. When there comes to them that which they [should] have recognized, they refuse to believe in (kafaru) it. ( 2:89) Accordingly, juhud includes rejection (kufr at-taktheeb) and resistance (kufr al-‘inaad)
 Jumuʿah  (جمعة)
Friday prayer 
 Juzʾ  (جزء)
one of thirty parts of the Qur’an.


 Kaʿbah  (الكعبة)
cube-house; i.e., the cube-shaped building in Mecca which Muslims face to pray.
 Kāfir  – non-Muslim (كافر kāfir sing.; كفّار kuffār pl.)
from the word kafara, “to hide.” Those who deliberately hide the truth; non-Muslims in Islamic or non-Islamic countries or states, unbelievers, truth-concealers; one who is ungrateful to  God as per Islam . Common derogatory term used by different Islamic factions such as sunni and shias to denounce each other as non-Muslims. Plural: Kāfirūn. Commonly used as an offensive term for black people by white South Africans.
 Kalām  (علم الكلام) (ʿilm al-kalām)
Literally, “words” or “speech,” and referring to oration. The name applied to the discipline of philosophy and theology concerned specifically with the nature of faith, determinism and freedom, and the nature of the divine attributes.
Khair (خير)
Every kind of good
 Khalīfah  (خليفة)
Caliph, more generally, one performing the duties of  khilafa .
Khalīl (خليل)
devoted friend
Khalq (خلق)
Creation – the act of measuring; determining, estimating and calculating. Khalq is the noun form of the verb khalaqa (see bara, sawwara).
Al-khāliq (الخالق)
The Creator, Allah.
 Khamr  (خمر)
Intoxicant, wine.
 Khatīb  (خطيب)
the speaker at the Friday Muslim prayer, or Jumu’ah prayer.
Khatm (ختم)
to finish – refers to the complete recitation of the Qur’an.
 Kharāj  (خراج)
a land tax.
goodness. See birr (righteousness) See qist (equity) See ‘adl (equilibrium and justice) See haqq (truth and right) See ma’ruf (known and approved) See taqwa (piety.)
 khilāf  (خلاف)
Controversy, dispute, discord.
 Khilāfah  (خلافة)
Man’s trusteeship and  stewardship  of  Earth ; Most basic theory of the  Caliphate ; Flora and fauna as sacred trust; Accountability to; God for harms to nature, failure to actively care and maintain. Three specific ways in which khalifa is manifested in Muslim practice are the creation of  haram  to protect water,  hima  to protect other species (including those useful to man), and by resisting infidel domination over  Muslim  lands, in  jihad .
 Khilwa , (خلوة)
An offense consisting of being caught alone in private with a member of the opposite sex who is not an immediate family member.
 al-khulafāʾ ar-rāshidūn  (الخلفاء الراشدون)
four first caliphs, believed by most Muslims to be most righteous rulers in history
 Khimār  (خمار) (pl. khumur (خُمُر) or ʾakhmirah (أخْمِرة))
headcovering (Q. 24:31).
 Khitān  (ختان)
Male circumcision.
Khuluq (خُلُق) pl. ʾakhlāq (أخلاق)
Khushūʿ (خشوع)
humility, devotion, concentration (especially in prayer).
 Khuṭbah  (خطبة)
the sermon at Jumu’ah prayer.
Kibr (كِبْر)
pride, arrogance
Kibar (كِبَر)
old age
Kitāb (كتاب)
book; The Qurʾān is often referred to as “Al-Kitāb” (The Book).
 Kufr  (كفر)
Unbelief, infidelity, blasphemy; also hubris.
Kufr al-ḥukm (كفر الحكم)
Disbelief from judgment.
Kufr al-ʿInād (كفر العناد)
Disbelief out of stubbornness
Kufr al-ʾInkār (كفر الإنكار)
Disbelief out of arrogance and pride.
Kufr al-ʾIstibdāl (كفر الإستبدال)
Disbelief because of trying to substitute Allah’s Laws.
Kufr al-ʾIstiḥlāl (كفر الإستحلال)
Disbelief out of trying to make HARAM into HALAL.
Disbelief due to mockery and derision
Kufr al-jahl (كفر الجهل)
Disbelief from not being aware of or not understanding.
Kufr al-juhud (كفر الجهد)
Disbelief from obstinacy after being presented with truth.
Kufr an-Nifāq (كفر النفاق)
Disbelief out of hypocrisy.
Kufr al-ʾIʿrāḍ (كفر الإعراض)
Disbelief due to avoidance.
 Kun  (كن)
God’s command to the universe, ‘Be!’ is sufficient to create it.


 Lā ilāha illā-llāh  (لَا إِلٰهَ إِلَّا الله)
“There is no god but  God .” The most important expression in Islam. It is part of the first pillar of Islam. According to Islam, this is the message of all the Prophets, such as Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad (peace be upon them all).
 Labbayka -llāhumma  (لبّيكَ اللّهُم)
God, I obey you (said during hajj)
 Laghw  (لغو)
Dirty, false, evil vain talk
 Laʿnah  (لعنة)
Curse, execration, or imprecation.
 Laylat al-Qadr  (ليلة القدر)
the Night of Power, towards the end of Ramadan, when Muhammad (saw) received the first revelation of the Qur’an.


 Madhhab  (مذهب)
pl. Madhāhib (مذاهب) school of religious jurisprudence (fiqh), school of thought. Also see fiqh.
 Madrasah  (مدرسة)
school, university
 Maghrib  (مغرب)
the fourth daily  salat  prayer.  Performed right after sun sets.
 Mahdi  (مهدي)
“a guide”. More specifically al-Mahdi (the guide) is a figure who will appear with Prophet Jesus before the end of time, when God allows it, to bring world peace, order and justice, after it has been overcome with injustice and aggression.
Mahdūr ad-damm (مهدور الدم)
he whose blood must be wasted
 Maḥram  (محرم)
a relative of the opposite gender usually described as being “within the forbidden limits”; a better description is “within the protected limits”. means relatives who one can appear before without observing  hijab  and who one cannot marry.
 Maisir  (ميسر )
gambling, game of chance
 Makrūh  (مكروه)
Means “detested”, though not  haraam  (forbidden); something that is disliked or offensive. If a person commits the Makruh, he does not accumulate  ithim  but avoiding the Makhruh is rewarded with  thawab .
 Malāʾikah  (ملائكة)
angels (Sing. Malak). Belief in angels is one of the  Five Pillars of Islam  and requiered for Muslims to believe in.
 Mā malakat ʾaymānukum  (ما ملكت أيمانكم)
one’s rightful spouse (literally: what your right hands possess)
Manāsik (مناسك)
the rules specifying the requirements of a legally valid  hajj 
Mandūb (مندوب)
commendable or recommended. Failure to do it would not be a sin.
Manhaj (منهج)
the methodology by which truth is reached
 Mansūkh  (منسوخ)
That which is abrogated. The doctrine of al-Nasikh wal-Mansukh (abrogation) of certain parts of the Qur’anic revelation by others. The principle is mentioned in the Qur’an (2:106) see naskh
 Manzil  (منزل)
one of seven equal parts of the Qur’an
 Maʿrūf  (معروف)
consensus of the community
 Maqāṣid  (مقاصد) sing. maqṣid (مقصد)
goals or purposes; such as the purposes of Islamic law
Maṣāliḥ (مصالح) sing. maṣlaḥah (مصلحة)
public interests
 Masbuq  (مَسْبُوق)
A person who is late for salat and has not joined the imam in the first rak’at.
 Mā shāʾa -llāh  (ما شاء الله)
Allah has willed it
 Masīḥ  (مسيح)
the (Biblical) Messiah, Jesus Christ
 Masjid  (مسجد) pl. masājid, مساجد
place of prayer; mosque
 Masjid al-Ḥarām  (المسجد الحرام)
the mosque surrounding the  Kaʿbah  in Mecca.
 Mawālī  or mawālā (موالي)
Non-Arab Muslims
Mawlā [mawlan (مولى)] [pl. mawālin (موالٍ)]
protector or master
 Mawlānā  (مولانا)
an Arabic word literally meaning “our lord” or “our master”. It is used mostly as a title preceding the name of a respected religious leader, in particular graduates of religious institutions. The term is sometimes used to refer to  Rumi .
 Maulvi  (مولوی)
an honorific Islamic religious title often, but not exclusively, given to Muslim religious scholars or Ulema preceding their names. Maulvi generally means any religious cleric or teacher
 Mecca  (مكّة Makkah)
the holiest city in  Islam 
 Medina  (مدينة Madīnah)
“city”; Medinat-un-Nabi means “the City of the Prophet.”  
 Mi’ād  (معاد)
the Resurrection; God will resurrect all of humankind to be judged. Shi’as regard this as the fifth  Pillar of Islam .
 Miḥrāb  (محراب)
a niche in the wall of all mosques, indicating the direction of prayer
 Millah  (مِلَّة)
In Arabic, millah means “religion,” but it has only been used to refer to religions other than Islam, which is  din .
(see Millah) (Turkish word also meaning a nation, community, or a people). In an Islamic state, “Ahl al Kitab” may continue to practice their former religion in a semi-autonomous community termed the millet.
 Minaret  (منارة)
a tower built onto a mosque from the top of which the call to prayer is made
 Minbar  (منبر)
a raised pulpit in the mosque where the Imam stands to deliver sermons
 Minhaj  (منهج)
methodology, e.g. methods, rules, system, procedures.
 Mīqāt  (ميقات )
intended place
 Miʿrāj  (المعراج)
the Ascension to the Seven Heavens during the Night Journey See also:  isra 
 Muʾadhdhin  (مأذن)
a person who performs the call to prayer
 Muʿāhadāt  (معاهدات)
 Muʿawwidhatayn  (المعوذتين)
suras  Al-Falaq  and  an-Nas , the “Surahs of refuge”, should be said to relieve suffering (also protect from Black Magic)
 Mubāḥ  (مباح)
literally permissible; neither forbidden nor commended. Neutral. (See  halal )
 Mubaligh  (مبلغ)
person who recites Qur’an
 Muftī  (مفتى)
an Islamic scholar who is an interpreter or expounder of Islamic law (Sharia), capable of issuing fatawa (plural of “fatwa”).
 Muḥajjabah  (محجبة)
woman who wears  hijab .
unequivocal verses of Qur’an. (See mutashabehat.)
 Muḥāribah  (محاربة)
a person who wages war against God
 Muḥammadun rasūl allāh  (محمدٌ رسول الله)
“Muhammad (saw) is the messenger of God.” This statement is the second part of the first pillar of Islam. This is the second most important statement in Islam.
Mufsid (مفسد)
evil-doer a person who wages jihad (war) not in accordance with the Qur’an. Plural  mufsideen .
Muḥsin (محسن)
a person who performs good deed. Plural  muhsineen . Opposite of Mufsidun.
 Muhājirūn  (مهاجرون)
The first Muslims that accompanied Muhammad (saw) when he traveled to Medina .
 Muharṭiq  (مهرطق)
 Mujāhid  (مجاهد)
a fighter for Islam. Plural Mujāhidūn (مجاهدون).
 Mujtahid  (مجتهد)
a scholar who uses reason for the purpose of forming an opinion or making a ruling on a religious issue. Plural: Mujtahidun.
 Mullah  (ملا)
are Islamic clergy. Ideally, they should have studied the Qur’an, Islamic traditions (hadith), and Islamic law (fiqh).
 Muʾmin  (مؤمن)
A Muslim who observes the commandments of the Qur’an.
 Munāfiq  (منافق)
hypocrite. Plural: Munafiqun
 Muntaiabah  (منتقبة) pl. muntaqibāt (منتقبات)
woman who wears  niqab 
 Murābaḥah  ( مرابحة)
a type of sharia-compliant mortgage
 Murshid  (مرشد)
a Sufi teacher
 Murtadd  (مرتد) female apostate is Murtaddah
 Muṣḥaf  (مصحف)
a copy, codex or redaction of the Qur’an.
 Mushrik  (مشرك)(pl. mushrikūn) (مشركون)
One who associates others in worship with God; a polytheist.
 Muslim  (مسلم)
a follower of the religion of Islam. One who submits their will to God (Allah).  Comes from the same root (S-L-M) as Salam and Islam.
 Mustaḥabb  (مستحبّ)
commendable or recommended. (See  halal ,  mandub )
Mutʿah (متعة)
literally enjoyment; compensation paid to a divorced woman; when used in the phrase  nikāḥ al-mutʿah  (نكاح المتعة) it refers to temporary marriage that is practiced in Twelver Shia Islam.
Mutashābihāt (متشابهات)
equivocal verses of Qur’an. (See Muhakkamat.)
 Mutaʿaṣṣibūn  (متعصّبون)
 Muṭawwaʿ  (مطوّع) plural muṭawwaʿūn (مطوّعون)
religious man in certain regions, a volunteer teacher
 Muṭawwaʿūn  (مطوّعون) (مطوعين) (singular muṭawwaʿ)
Religious police.
 Mutawātir  (متواتر)
“agreed upon”—used to describe hadith that were narrated by many witnesses through different narration chains (isnads) leading back to Muhammad (saw)


 Nabī  (نبي)
literally, prophets. In the Islamic context, a Nabi is a man sent by God to give guidance to man, but not given scripture. The Prophet Abraham (as) was a Nabi. This is in contrast to Rasul, or Messenger. Plural: Anbiya. See:  Rasul .
 Nafs  (النفس)
soul, the lower self, the ego/id
 Nāfilah  (نافلة)
An optional, supererogatory practice of worship, in contrast to farida
 Najāsah  (نجاسة)
Impurity (such as blood, urine, any part of pig)
Nājis (ناجس)
 Nakīr and Munkar  (نكير و منكر)
two  angels  who test the faith of the dead in their graves
Ritual Prayer in  Turkish  and  Persian  language.
 Naṣīḥa  (نصيحة)
 Naskh  (نسخ)
The doctrine of al-Nasikh wal-Mansukh (abrogation) of certain parts of the Qur’anic revelation by others. The principle is mentioned in the Qur’an (2:106) see mansukh.
 Naṣṣ  (نصّ)
a known, clear legal injunction
Nifās (نفاس)
the bleeding after childbirth (see  Haid )
 Nifāq  (نفاق)
falsehood; dishonesty; hypocrisy
 Nihāļ  (نحال)
Nihal is an Arabic name meaning “joyful.”
 Nikāḥ  (النكاح)
the matrimonial contract between a bride and bridegroom within Islamic marriage
 Niqāb  (نقاب)
 veil  covering the face
 Niyyah  (نية)
 Nubūwwah  (نبوّة)
prophethood. Shi’a regard this as the third  Pillar of Islam .
a great munkar – prohibited, evil, dreadful thing.
 Nūr  (نور)
Light, more theological connoted than daw’, the proper term for light in Arabic. Nur is often associated with benevolence, as Light of Muhammad (saw) and angels of mercy as created from nur. The term is closely associated with nar, which denotes the burning light of fire, often associated with fierce forces, like angels of punishment, demons and hell.


an acronym that stands for “peace be upon him” or “Peace and Blessings Upon him”, a blessing which is affixed to  Muhammad’s (saw) name whenever it is written. The Arabic version is S.A.W.


 Qadhf  (قذف)
false  imputation  of  unchastity  specifically punished by  sharia .
 Qadar  (قدر)
 Qāḍī  (قاضي)
 judge  of  Islamic Law 
 Qalb  (قلب)
Heart, considered th center of the self in Islamic anthropology
 Qiblah  (قبلة)
the direction Muslims face during prayer
Qitāl fī sabīl allāh ( قتال في سبيل الله )
fight in the cause of Allah (swt).
 Qiyāmah  (قيامة)
resurrection; return of the dead for the Day of Judgment
 Qiṣāṣ  (قصاص)
equitable retribution – a fine for murder if the heirs forgive the perpetrator. 
Qiyām (قيام)
to stand, a position of  salat  prayer
 Qiyās  (القياس)
analogy – foundation of legal reasoning and thus  fiqh 
 Qudsī  (قدسي)
classification of a hadith that are believed to be narrated by Muhammad (saw) from God.
Qurbah (قربة)
closeness to God. Term is associated with Sufism.
 Qurʾān  (القرآن)
The word Qur’an means recitation.  Muslims  believe the Qur’an (Koran) to be the literal word of God and the culmination of God’s revelation to mankind, revealed to  Muhammad (saw)  in the year AD 610 in the cave Hira by the angel Jibril (as).


 Rabb  (ربّ)
Lord, Sustainer, Cherisher, Master.
R. A.raḍiya -llāhu ʿanhu (رضي الله عنه)
May Allah be pleased with him. Variants are ʿanhā (her) and ʿanhum (them).
 Raḥmān  (رحمن)
Merciful; Ar-Rahman (الرحمن) means “The Most Merciful”
 Raḥīm  (رحيم)
compassionate; Ar-Rahim (الرحيم) means “The Most Compassionate” as in the  Basmala 
 Raḥimaḥullāh  (رحمه الله)
May Allah have mercy on him. Usually used after mentioning the  companions of Muhammad (saw)
 Raḥmatullāh  (رحمة الله)
Mercy of Allah. Sometimes used as an alternative to  Rahimahullah  after mentioning a righteous person by saying, rahmatullahi ʿilayh (رحمة الله علیه): Mercy of Allah be upon him/her
 Rajm  (رجم)
lit.  stoning , refers to  capital punishment  by stoning in parts of  Islamic law , but also takes the meaning of “accursed” in a metaphorical way. Also used as an  epithet  for the devil in some Islamic prayers.
 Rakʿah  (ركعة)
one unit of Islamic prayer, or  Salat . Each daily prayer is made up of a different number of raka’ah.
 Ramaḍān  (رمضان)
month of fasting when the Qur’an was first revealed. Spelt as RamzaanRamadhan, or Ramathan as well.
 Rāshidūn  (راشدون)
Sunnis consider the first four caliphs as the “orthodox” or “rightly guided” caliphs. They were Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, ‘Uthman and ‘Ali.
 Rasūl  (رسول)
messenger; Unlike prophets ( Nabi ), messengers are given scripture. Moses (as), David (as), Jesus (as) and Mohammed (as) are considered messengers. All messengers are considered prophets, but not all prophets are given scripture. See:  Nabi .
 Riba  (ربا)
 interest , the charging and paying of which is forbidden by the  Qur’an 
Guarding Muslims from infidels
 Riddah  (ردة)
apostasy, in which a person abandons Islam for another faith or no faith at all.
 Risālah  (رِسَالَة)
literally, message or letter. Used both in common parlance for mail correspondences, and in religious context as divine message.
 Rūḥ  (روح)
spirit; the divine breath which God blew into the clay of Adam. Sometimes used interchangeable with nafs; otherwise distinguished and identified with the sublime parts of human’s soul.
 Rukn  (ركن) plural  ʾArkān  (أركان)
means what is inevitable. One of the five pillars of Islam. 
 Rukūʿ  (ركوع)
the bowing performed during salat.


 Sabb  (سَبّ)
 Ṣabr  (صبر)
patience, endurance, self-restraint
 Ṣadaqah  (صدقة)
charity; voluntary alms above the amount for  zakat .
 Ṣaḥābah  (الصحابة) (sing. Ṣāḥib) (صاحب)
companions of  Muhammad (saw)
 Ṣāḥīḥ  (صحيح)
“Sound in isnad.” A technical attribute applied to the “isnad” of a hadith.
 Sakīnah  (سكينة)
divine “tranquility” or “peace” which descends upon a person when the  Qur’an  is recited.
 Salaf  (السلف الصالح)
(righteous) predecessors/ancestors. In Islam, Salaf is generally used to refer to the first three generations of Muslims. Anyone who died after this is one of the khalaf or “latter-day Muslims”.
a reform movement, basing Islamic teachings on  Quran and Sunnah  alone. Contrary to Classical Sunnism, it disregards former established  consensus  and the opinions of the  Sahaba .
 Ṣalāt  (صلاة) sala(t)
any one of the daily five obligatory prayers. Sunnis regard this as the second  Pillar of Islam 
Salaat al-Istikharah
Prayer for guidance is done in conjunction with two rakaahs of supererogatory prayer.
 Salām  (سلام)
peace (see sulh)
 Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam  (صلى الله عليه و سلم)
“May Allah bless him and grant him peace.” The expression should be used after stating Muhammad’s (saw) name. See abbreviation: S.A.W. or S.A.W.S. also P.B.U.H.
Ṣamad (صمد)
eternal, absolute; Muslims believe Allah (swt) is “The Eternal.”
 Salsabīl  (سلسبيل)
a river in heaven (al-firdaus)
awakening, revival
 S.A.W.  (or S.A.W.S.)
 Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam  (صلى الله عليه و سلم). See P.B.U.H.
 Ṣawm  (صَوم)
fasting during the month of  Ramadhan . The word sawm is derived from  Syriac  sawmo.
 Sayyid  (سيّد)
(in everyday usage, equivalent to ‘ Mr. ‘) a descendant of a relative of Muhammad (saw), usually via  Husayn.
refer to some of the ceremonies used by various sufi orders.
 Shahādah  (الشهادة)
The testimony of faith: La ilaha illa Allah. Muhammadun rasulullah. (“There is no god but Allah. Muhammad (saw) is the messenger of Allah.”). Sunnis regard this as the first  Pillar of Islam . Also may be used as a synonym for the term  Istish’hād  meaning martyrdom.
 Shahīd  (شهيد) pl. shuhadāʾ (شهداء)
witness, martyr. Usually refers to a person killed whilst fighting in “jihād fī sabīl Allāh” (jihad for the sake of Allah). Often used in modern times for deaths in a political cause (including victims of soldiers, deaths in battle, et cetera) which are viewed by some Muslims as a spiritual cause not just a political cause. But the real meaning of Jihad is to defend Islam in any way; thus, it could be in an economic way or could refer to fighting for the rights of the oppressed or the believers; most often it refers to mastering one’s own inclination for evil and shirk.
 Shaykh  (شيخ)
a spiritual master, Muslim clergy
 Sharīʿah  (الشريعة)
“the path to a watering hole”; Islamic law; the eternal  ethical code  and  moral code  based on the  Qur’an ,  Sunnah ,  Ijma , and  Qiyas ; basis of Islamic jurisprudence ( fiqh )
 Sharīf  (شريف)
a title bestowed upon the descendants of Muhammad (saw) through Hasan (ra), son of his daughter Fatima (ra) Zahra (ra) and son-in-law Ali ibn Abi Talib (ra)
 Shayṭān  (شيطان)
Evil being; a devil. With the article Al- it designates the Devil ( Iblis ) in particular. In plural, it designates a host of evil spirits; demons. Also applied to evil humans and evil jinn.
 Shīʿah  (الشيعة)
A branch of Islam who believe in Imam Ali and his sons (Hassan and Hussayn) as custodians of Islam by the will of Mohammed.
 Shirk  (شرك)
idolatry; polytheism; the sin of believing in any divinity except God and of associating other gods with God.
 Shūrā  (شورى)

 Majlis ash-shūrā  (مجلس الشورى)
advisory council in a Caliphate
 Sidrat al-Muntaha  (سدرة المنتهى )
a lotus tree that marks the end of the seventh heaven, the boundary where no creation can pass.
 Sīrah  (السيرة)
life or biography of  Muhammad (saw); his  moral example  – with  hadith  this comprises the  sunnah 
 aṣ-Ṣirāṭ al-mustaqīm  ( الصراط المستقيم)
the Straight Path
Subah Sadiq
true dawn
 Subḥānahu wa taʿāla  (سبحانه و تعالى)(abbreviated S.W.T.)
expression used following written name or vocalization of Allah in Arabic meaning highly praised and glorified is He.
 Subḥān allāh  (سبحان الله)
“Glory to God” – this phrase is often used when praising God or exclaiming awe at His attributes, bounties, or creation.
 Ṣūfī  (صوفي)
a Muslim mystic; See: Sufism ( tasawwuf ).
 Suḥūr  (سحور)
the meal eaten by fasting Muslims just before dawn.
 Sujūd (سجود)
kneeling down, a position of  salat .
 Ṣukūk  (صكوك)
bond that generates revenue from sales, profits, or leases rather than interest.
 Ṣulḥ  (صلح)
A condition of peace, an armistice, or treaty. It is related to the word muṣālaḥah (مصالحة) which means peace, conciliation, or compromise.
 Sunnah  (السنّة) or  sunnat an-Nabī  (سنّة النبي)
the “path” or “example” of Muhammad (saw), i.e., what he did or said or agreed to during his life. He is considered by Muslims to be the best human moral example. Also referring to optional good deeds, such as pious deeds and voluntary ritual prayers.
 Sunni  (سنّي)
the largest denomination of Islam. The word Sunni comes from the word Sunnah (Arabic: سنة), which means the words and actions or example of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad (saw).
Sūrah (سورة)
chapter; the  Qur’an  is composed of 114 suras


Taʿāla (تعالى)
 Tābiʿīn  (تابعون|تابعين)
followers of the  Ṣaḥābah 
 Tafsīr  (تفسير)
 exegesis , particularly such commentary on the Qur’an
 Ṭāghūt  (طاغوت) (taghout)
originally Aramaic, meaning “false god”; also tyranny.
 Tahajjud  (تهجُّد)
optional (supererogatory), late-night (pre-dawn) prayer
 Ṭahārah  (طهارة)
purification from ritual impurities by means of  wudu  or  ghusl 
 Ṭāhir  (طاهر)
pure, ritually clean
 Tahlīl  (تهليل)
Uttering the formula of faith: “Lā ilāha illā -llāh”, (i.e. “There is no god but God”); 
Tahmid  (تحميد):
To praise Allah or saying “Alhamdullah”. 
 Taḥnīk  (تحنيك)
‘Tahnik’ is an Islamic ceremony of touching the lips of a newborn baby with honey, sweet juice or pressed dates.
 Taḥrīf  (تحريف)
corruption, forgery. Muslims believe the Bible Scriptures were corrupted but the Qur’an is in its original form.
 Tajdīd  (تجديد)
to purify and reform society in order to move it toward greater equity and justice, literally meaning to make new in present tense
 Tajdīf  (تجديف)
 Tajwīd  (تجويد)
a special manner of reciting the Qur’an according to prescribed rules of pronunciation and intonation.
 Takāful  ( التكتاقل)
Based on sharia Islamic law, it is a form of mutual insurance. See retakaful.
 Takbīr  (تكبير)
a proclamation of the greatness of Allah (swt); a Muslim invocation.
 takhsis  (ثخصص, also takhsees)
in fiqh, a qualification of a general ruling [‘aam] so that it only applies in certain cases.
 Takfīr  (تكفير)
declaration of individual or group of previously considered Muslim as kaffir.
 Takhrīj  (تخريج الحديث )
The science of hadith extraction and authentication, including validation of chains of transmitters of a hadith by this science’s scholars and grading hadith validity.
 Takweeni  (تکوینیة)
 Ṭalāq  (الطلاق)
accountable ones; those who are responsible for their deeds. Among them are the human and the jinn.
 Taqdīr  (تقدير)
fate, predestination
 Taqlīd  (تقليد)
to follow the scholarly opinion of one of the four Imams of Islamic Jurisprudence.
 Taqīyyah  (تقيّة)
‘precaution’, that one is allowed to hide his true beliefs in certain circumstances or to lie to save himself of being killed or harmed.
 Taqwa  (تقوى)
righteousness; goodness; Piety: Taqwa is taken from the verbe Ittaqua, which means Avoiding, Fearing the punishment from Allah (swt) for committing sins. It is piety obtained by fearing the punishment of Allah.
 Tarāwīḥ  (تراويح)
extra prayers in Ramadan after the Isha prayer.
 Tarkīb  (تَرْكِيب)
the study of  Arabic grammar  issued from the  Qur’an 
 Ṭarīqah  (طريقة)
a Muslim  religious order , particularly a  Sufi  order
 Tartīl  (ترتيل)
slow, meditative recitation of the  Qur’an 
 Taṣawwuf  (التصوّف)
 Tasbīḥ  (تسبيح)
Uttering the formula: “Subhan Allah”, i.e. (Glory be to Allah)
 Tashkīl  (تشكيل)
vocalization of Arabic text by means of diacritical marks. An integral part of the Arabic writing system. Literally meaning to form or arrange
 Taslīm  (تسليم)
salutation at the end of prayer
 Taṭbīr  (تطبير)
Shia Ashura ceremony of self-flagellation by hitting head with sword.
 Tawafuq  (توافق)
God-conscious understanding of a phenomenon.
 Tawakkul  (توکل)
total reliance on Allah (swt).
 Tawassul  (توسُّل)
asking Allah Almighty through the medium and intercession of another person.
 Ṭawāf  (طواف)
circumambulating the Ka’bah during Hajj.
Tawfiq (توفیق)
Divine help in getting to the purpose to one who deserves.
 Tawbah  (توبة)
 Tawḥīd  (توحيد)
 monotheism ; affirmation of the Oneness of Allah (swt). Muslims regard this as the first part of the  Pillar of Islam, the second part is accepting Muhammad (saw) as rasoul (messenger). The opposite of Tawheed is shirk 
 Ta’weel  (تأويلة)
explanation and elucidation, how something will occur and its result, or figurative interpretation.
 Tawrāh  (توراة)
the Torah as revealed to  Musa  (Moses.)
 Ṭayyib  (طيِّب)
all that is good as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons, foods, etc. Means “pure.” The Shahaddath is tayyib.
 Taʿzīr  (تعزير)
Discretionary punishment – a sentence or punishment whose measure is not fixed by the Shari’ah. (See hudud, qisas)
 Tazkīyah  (تزكية)
Purification of the Soul.
Thawāb (ثواب)
Reward for good deeds that is tallied on  qiyamah  (judgment day.) Opposite of ithim.
 Tilāwah  (تلاوة)
ritual recitation of passages of the Qur’an.
Ṭumaʾnīnah (طمأنينة)
state of motionlessness, calm


 ʿUbūdīyah  (عبودية)
 ʾUḍḥīyah  (أضحية)
 ʿUlamāʾ  (علماء) or ulema
the leaders of Islamic society, including teachers, Imams and judges. Singular alim.
 ʾUmmah  (الاُمّة) or umma
(literally ‘nation‘) the global community of all Muslim believers
 ʿUmrah  (عمرة)
the lesser pilgrimage performed in Mecca. Unlike hajj, ʿumrah can be performed throughout the year.
 ʿUqūbah  (عقوبة)
the branch of sharia that deals with punishment. (See hudud, qisas, tazeer)
 ʿUrf  (عرف)
custom of a given society, leading to change in the  fiqh 
 ʾUṣūl  (أُصول) (sing. ʾaṣl)(أصل)
Principles, origins.
 ʾUṣūl al-Fiqh  (أصول الفقه)
the study of the origins and practice of Islamic jurisprudence ( fiqh )


Wa ʿalaykum as-salām (وعليكم السلام)
Wa ‘Alaykum as-Salaam!, meaning “and upon you be peace”. (see  As-Salamu Alaykum )
Wafāt (وفاة)
death. (Barah-wafat) Muhammad (saw) was born on the twelfth day of Rabi-ul-Awwal, the third month of the Muslim year. His death anniversary also falls on the same day, the word ‘barah’ standing for the twelve days of Muhammad’s (saw) sickness.
 Waḥdat al-wujūd  (وحدة الوجود)
“unity of being”. Philosophical term used by some  Sufis . Related to  fanaa 
 Waḥy  (وحی)
revelation or inspiration of God to His prophets for all humankind
 Wahn  (وهن)
literal meaning is “weakness” or “feebleness”. According to one hadith, Muhammad (saw) explained it as “love of the world and dislike of death”
 Wājib  (واجب)
obligatory or mandatory see  fard 
 Walī  (ولي)
friend, protector, guardian, supporter, helper
 Waqf  (وقف)
An endowment of money or property: the return or yield is typically dedicated toward a certain end, for example, to the maintenance of the poor, a family, a village, or a mosque. Plural: awqaf
 Warrāq  (ورّاق)
traditional scribe, publisher, printer, notary and book copier
 Wasaṭ  (وسط)
the middle way, justly balanced, avoiding extremes, moderation
 Wasīlah  (وسيلة)
the means by which one achieves nearness to Allah (see  tawassul  )
 Witr  (وتر)
a voluntary, optional night prayer of odd numbers  rakaats .
 Wuḍūʾ  (الوضوء)
ablution for ritual purification from minor impurities before  salat 


Yā Allāh (یا الله)
O, God!
Ya Rasūl Allāh (یا رسول الله)
O, Messenger of God!. Term used by companions when interacting with Muhammad (saw).
Yaʾjūj wa-Maʾjūj (يأجوج ومأجوج )
Ya’jūj wa-Ma’jūj is the Islamic counterpart of  Gog and Magog 
 Yaqīn  (يقين)
certainty, that which is certain
Yarḥamuk-Allāh (يرحمك الله)
“May God have mercy on you”, said when someone sneezes; the same as “(God) bless you” in English
Allāh Yarḥamuhu (الله يرحمه), fem. yarḥamuhā(يرحمها)
“May God have mercy of his/her soul”, (said when someone dies)
Yawm ad-Dīn (يوم الدين)
Day of Reckoning, Awe
Yawm al-Ghaḍab (يوم الغضب)
Day of Rage, Wrath
 Yawm al-Qiyāmah  (يوم القيامة)
“Day of the Resurrection”; Day of Judgement


 Zabūr  (زبور)
the Psalms revealed to King Daoud (David) عليه السلام
Zabīḥa (Dhabīḥah) (ذَبِيْحَة) see  dhabiha 
Islamic method of slaughtering an animal. Using a sharp knife the animal’s windpipe, throat and blood vessels of the neck are severed without cutting the spinal cord to ensure that the blood is thoroughly drained before removing the head. See  halal 
 Ẓāhir (ظاهر)
Exterior meaning
 Zaidi  (الزيدية)
Islamic sub-sect of  Shi’ah , popularly found in Yemen, with similarities to  Sunni 
 Zakāt  (زكاة), Al-Māl
tax, alms, tithe as a Muslim duty;  Sunnis  regard this as the fourth  Pillar of Islam . Neither charity nor derived from  Islamic economics , but a religious duty and social obligation.
 Zakāt al-Fiṭr  (زكاة الفطر)
Charity given at the end of Ramadan.
 Ẓālimūn  (ظالمون)
polytheists, wrong-doers, and unjust.
 Zandaqa  (زندقة)
 Zināʾ  (زناء, زنى)
sexual activity outside of marriage (covering the English words  adultery  and fornication)
 Zindīq  (زنديق)
heretic, atheist
 Zulfiqar  (Dhu-l-fiqār) (ذو الفقار)
Sword of Ali (ra), presented to him by Muhammad (saw)