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.

Jahannam  Hell.

Janâzah  Funeral procession. The deceased person is also referred to as a janâzah.

Jannah  Paradise.

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.

Mahr  Dowry.

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.

Nûr  Light.

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.

Wakîl  Representative.

Wasîyyah  Bequest.

Wilâyat  Literally means “friendship”. In Islamic sûfism it refers to that stage where a person gains close proximity to Allah.

Back to Contents Page