Glossary – Explanation of Islamic Terms
‘Âlim: One who has attained a considerable amount of Islamic knowledge.
Amânah: A trust or something with which you have been entrusted. For further details, refer to the chapter on amânah.
Auliyâ: Plural of “walî”. A walî is a friend of Allah.
Bâtil: In Islamic jurisprudence it refers to an act which is invalid.
Barakah: Literally means “blessings”. It also refers to the experiencing of abundance in things which are of little value.
Bay‘us salam: Technically, it refers to a contract of sale causing an immediate payment of the price and admitting a delay in the delivery of the goods.
Bid‘ah: Literally means an “innovation”. In Islam it refers to the introduction of new things into Islam which have no basis in the Quran or Hadith and regarding these things as acts of îbâdah. A bid‘ah is a major sin in Islam.
Du’a: Supplication, prayer or devotional phrases.
Fâsid: In Islamic jurisprudence it refers to an action which is considered to be improper.
Farâid: Plural of fard.
Fard: Literally means “compulsory”. In Islam it refers to those acts and things which are compulsory on a Muslim. Abandoning or abstaining from a fard act is a major sin. Rejecting a fard act amounts to kufr.
Fidyah: Redemption from the omission of certain religious duties by a material donation or a religious act.
Ghee: Clarified butter.
Ghusl: The act of washing the entire body from head to toe without leaving a single place dry.
Hâfiz: One who has memorized the Quran.
Halâl: That which is lawful or permissible in Islam.
Harâm: That which is unlawful or prohibited in Islam.
Ibâdah: Literally means “worship”. In Islam it refers to all those acts with which one renders worship to Allah.
Ijârah fâsidah: Improper leasing or hiring. For further details, refer to the relevant chapter.
Janâzah: Funeral procession. The deceased person is also referred to as a janâzah.
Kafan: The cloth in which the deceased is enshrouded.
Kaffârah: Literally means “penance, atonement, expiation.” In Islamic law it refers to redemption from the omission of certain religious duties by a material donation or a ritual act.
Kuffâr: Plural of kâfir. A kâfir is one who rejects Allah and does not believe in Muhammad sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam as the final messenger of Allah.
Kufr: Refers to the state of disbelief.
Makrûh: That which is disliked or detestable.
Maradul maut: Refers to the last sickness of a person after which he passes away.
Masâ’il: Plural of mas’ala.
Mas’ala: Literally means “an issue, problem or question”. In Islamic jurisprudence it refers to a rule or regulation.
Mudârabah: Silent partnership. For further details, refer to the relevant chapter.
Mujâhidîn: Plural of mujâhid. Refers to a person who is engaged in jihâd or war against the kuffâr.
Mustahab: That which is preferable or desirable.
Mutawakkil: One who practices tawakkul.
Nafs: The soul.
Roti: Flat round bread.
Shafî: One who holds the right of pre-emption.
Shaytân: The accursed devil.
Shuf‘ah: The right of pre-emption.
Sunnah: An act carried out or sanctioned by Rasûlullâh sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam .
Tawakkul: The act of placing one’s complete faith and trust in Allah.
Ulamâ: Plural of ‘âlim.
Wâjib: Literally means “obligatory”. In Islamic jurisprudence it refers to an act which has not been established by an absolute proof. Leaving out a wâjib without any valid excuse makes one a fâsiq and entails punishment.
Wilâyat: Literally means “friendship”. In Islamic sûfism it refers to that stage where a person gains close proximity to Allah.