‘Adil: fair, just
‘Adl: the concept of the justice of God
Ahadith: singular of hadith, a statement (usually attributed either to the Prophet [pbuh] or to one of the members of his Progeny or companions)
Ahilla: plural of hilal, crescent
‘Alim: scholar, theologian, a highly knowledgeable person
A’mal: highly recommended acts of adoration
‘Arsh: literally: throne, symbol of the Almighty’s Authority
Ashar: plural of sahar, the time immediately preceding daybreak
‘Athan: the call for prayers, mu’aththin is one who performs ‘athan.
Awqaf : plural of waqf, a charitable trust
Ayah: verse (from a sacred scripture); plural: ayat
Barzakh: the place and time wherein the souls of the dead live till the Day of Judgment; see the Holy Qur’an, 23:100.
Basmala: the uttering of: "Bismillahir-Ramanir-Raim" (In the Name of Allah, the most Gracious, the most Merciful)
Beeď: plural of abyaď, white
Dahr: time, age, eternity
Dinar: an Islamic (now Arab) gold currency varying in weight
Dirham: an Islamic silver currency weighing approx. 3.12 grams
Diwan: meeting place, also a collection of poems
Diyya: blood money, monetary compensation for manslaughter or intentional murder
Du’a’: supplication, invocation
Id: an Islamic feast, a joyous celebration, a merry occasion
Fa’izeen: (or Fa’izùn) winners
Fajr: pre-dawn, daybreak
Faqih: jurist, one who is knowledgeable in Islamic jurisprudence
Farasikh: plural of farsakh, parasang (a loan Persian word), a measure of length (distance). According to Lisan al-’Arab, it may be three to six miles. "It is called so," the author of Lisan al-’Arab goes on, "because one who walks one farsakh will have to sit to rest," suggesting that the original meaning of the word is: to halt, to come to a stand still, to rest.
Fatawa: plural of fatwa, a religious edict or decision
Fiqh: the science of Islamic jurisprudence
Firdaws: Paradise
Fitra: the amount (in cash or kind) paid to the needy at the end of the month of Ramadan; see text for more details
Ghazwa: a military campaign, an invasion; invader: ghazi
Ghusl: ceremonial bath
hadith: (singular:) tradition, a statement made by Prophet Muhammad; plural: ahadith
Hadi: sacrificial animals offered at Mecca’s holy precincts
Hafiz: one who has learned the entire text of the Holy Qur’an by heart; plural: Huffaz
Hajj: Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca during the prescribed period
Halal: Islamically permissible, admissible, allowed
Haram: Islamically prohibitive, inadmissible, forbidden
Hijab: veil, curtain
Hilal: crescent, singular of ahilla
Hizb: literally, it means: party (plural: ahzab); another meaning: the 60th part of the Holy Qur’an
Hujja: proof, argument, authority
Huri: heavenly wife with large lovely eyes married to the male residents of Paradise
Ihram: pilgrimage garb, white unwoven cotton shroud worn by pilgrims
Ijtihad: the degree one reaches in order to be qualified as a mujtahid, one who is capable of deriving religious decisions on his own
‘Illiyeen: the highest pinnacle of Paradise; see Holy Qur’an, 83:18.
Imam: leader of an ummah, a group of people (small or big); he may be the one who leads others in congregational prayers, or a supreme relgious authority, or one of the Twelve Infallible Imams (as)
Iman: faith, conviction
Iqama: the prouncement of certain statements in preparation for the performing of the prayers, usually following the athan
‘Isha’: nighttime, evening
Isnad: the method whereby one hadith is traced and in the end attributed to a muhaddith, traditionist, one who transmitted it the first time
‘Isyan: transgression against the Almighty’s Commandments.
I’tikaf: the act of remaining most of the time at a mosque for prayers and supplications
Iftar: the time or the meal to break the fast
Iqama: the statements recited immediately before starting the ritual prayer
Isra’: night journey; usually a reference to the Prophet’s night journey from Mecca to Jerusalem
Jahannam: hell
Jahiliyya: pre-Islamic period of ignorance
Jami’a: inclusive, universal, university; it also means: handcuffs
Janaba: uncleanness caused by seminal discharge
Jannat: heaven, Paradise, garden, singular of jannat
Jihad: a struggle, an effort exerted, or a war waged in defense of Islam
Jizya: protection tax paid to Muslims by non-Muslims residing in areas under Islamic control whereby the Muslims protect their lives and property and extempt them from the military service
Kaffara: atonement from sin
Kafir: infidel, apostate, atheist, one who does not believe in the existence of the Creator; noun: kufr
Kalima: synonymous to "shahada," it is a Muslim’s declaration of faith (that is, to testify that there is no god except Allah, and that Muammad is the Messenger of Allah), and it is always pronounced in Arabic
Kantar: in Arabic: qintar, a varying weight of 100 ratls (rotls); a ratl in Syria is roughly 3.202 kg., whereas in England it is 449.28 grams, and in Lebanon it is 2.566 kg.
Khandaq: moat, ditch
Khums: one-fifth of one’s savings (usually paid by Shi’a Muslims) set aside from annual income
Kunya: the use of "Abu " (father of) or "Umm " (mother of) often as a prefix for one’s name
Kursi: literally: chair, symbol of the Almighty’s Seat of Judgment and Authority; see Holy Qur’an, 2:255
Khutba: lecture, sermon; a speech delivered on a specific occasion
Kufr: apostacy, infidelity, disbelief
Labbayk: an exclamation conveying the meaning of "At your service!" or "Here I am!"
Ma’ad: the Return: a reference to the returning of the souls to their new bodies after the period of barzakh (see above), and their ultimate returning to their Maker for judgment; generally, it is used to refer to death and the life hereafter.
Mahr: dowry paid by the groom to the bride (or vice versa as is the case in some cultures)
Majalis: meetings or gatherings held to commemorate certain religious occasion, mostly applied to those held during the month of Muharram or to recite the Fatiha for a deceased person; singular of majlis, a place where people sit
Marji’ taqlid: the highest theological authority-referee followed
Mas’um: infallible, divinely protected against sinning
Mash ‘ar: a place where certain rites are to be conducted, a sacred area or place or precinct
Mawla: depending on its usage, it may mean either "master" or "slave," or it may mean one who is most fit for a specific position of honor and prestige. Derived from the adjective awla (one who is best qualified), it means: the person who is best suited to be the religious and temporal leader of all Muslims.
Mi‘raj: the Prophet’s ascension from Jerusalem to the heavens
Mithqal: a weight equivalent to 24 karats or 4.68 grams
Mufassir: a theologian who is well-versed in the exegesis of the Holy Qur’an
Muaddith: traditionist, one who quotes statements of Prophet Muhammad
Mujahid: one who practices jihad (see jihad above)
Mujtahid: one who acquires the degree of ijtihad and thus becomes capable of deriving religious decisions on his own
Mu’min: believer, one who has iman, conviction, true belief
Munafiqùn: hypocrites
Musnad: a compilation of traditions (ahadith) that are consecutively and chronologically traced to their transmitters
Mutawatir: consecutively reported, traced by a perfect chronological chain of ascertained narrators of hadith
Mu’aththin: caller to prayers (usually at a mosque)
Mu’min: (Muslim) believer, a man of conviction
Nafl: optional, non-compulsory, supererotatory, highly recommended act of worship; plural: nawafil
Najasa: uncleanness, impurity; adjective: najis
Nathr: One’s pledge to do something very good to show appreciation for the Almighty’s favorable response to his supplication and the attainment of his worldly wish
Nur: divine or celestial light the source of which is neither fire nor reflection
Nubuwwah: prophethood, the belief in prophets and their messages
Qaniteen: those who are constantly supplicating
Qaďa: compensatory, making up for a missed rite
Qibla: direction towards the Ka’ba, Mecca
Qiyam: standing
Qudsi: divine, related to the Almighty
Qunoot: supplication during prayers
Rak’ah: (singular) prostration (during prayer or a ritual) (plural: rak’at)
Rukoo’: kneeling
Sabeel: path, way, avenue
Sadaqa: (singular) charity offered voluntarily; its plural is: sadaqat
Sadeed: pus collected from bleeding wounds to be served to the sinners in hell when they ask for water to quench their thirst
Sahaba: companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad; its singular is: Sahabi
Sahifa: tablet, scroll, parchment, a written document
Sahih: literally: authentic, correct, accurate; it is generally used to refer to the collection, group of collections, or book, of verified and authenticated ahadith of Prophet Muhammad
Sa’i: the running between the Safa and the Marwa near the Ka’ba
Sajda: prostration
Salat: Islamic prayers, optional or mandatory; plural: salawat
Salatul-’Id: late morning prayers comprised of two rak’at (prostrations) performed in the day that follows ‘Id al-Fitr (the feat of fast-breaking) signaling the end of the fast of the month of Ramadan
Saraya: (plural) military campagins personally ordered by Prophet Muhammad; singular: sariya
Shahada: martyrdom; it also means: testimony
Shahr: month
Shaikh: also shaykh, an honorific title with many meanings; literally, it means an old man; in Islamic theology and philosophy, however, it is used to denote a mentor, professor, or scholar of a high caliber
Shari’ah: Islam’s legislative system
Shirk: polytheism, the belief in the existence of partners with God
Shubha: (singular) doubt, suspicion; its plural is: shubuhat
Shùra: the principle of mutual consultation, Islam’s form of democracy
Siddeeq: one who testifies to the truthfulness of a prophet
Sirat: path, highway; same as Sabeel
Siyam: Islam’s norm of fast
Suhoor: time or meal taken before daybreak in preparation to fast during the day
Sultan: ruler who rules in the name of Islam, a Muslim monarch
Sunan: plural of sunnah: a highly commended act of worship or way whereby a Muslim seeks nearness to Allah
Sùra: (also Sùrah) a chapter of the Holy Qur’an
Tabi’een: plural of tabi’, one who accompanied for a good period of time, learned from and followed a Sahabi, a companion of the Holy Prophet Muhammad; its plural is: tabi’een
Tafsir: (singular) exegesis or explanation of Qur’anic verses; its plural is: tafasir
Tahajjud: night devotions; a mutahajjid is one who keeps religious vigilance, spending the night in prayer
Tahara: purification, the act of removing najasa, uncleanness or impurity
Takbeer: the act of glorifying Allah by declaring in an audible voice: "Allaho Akbar!" Allah is Great!
Talbiya: the reciting of “Labbayka Allahomma labbayk!” (Here, I come, Lord, in response to your call!)
Taqiyya: one’s way of exerting precaution in order to save his creed or life when either is in jeopardy, Shi’as’ way of trying to survive in the presence of sure perils
Taqleed: the concept of following a mujtahid or an authority recognized as the alam, the most knowledgeable in Islamics
Tarwiyah: The Day of Tarwiyah is the 8th of Thul-Hijjah when the pilgrims fill their water bags and prepare to go to Mina.
Tashahhud: the testimony regarding Allah being the Lord and Muammad being His Servant and Messenger; it is the uttering of "Ashhadu an la ilaha illa-Allah, wa anna Muhammad abdoho wa rasooloh"
Tashreeq: the cutting and sun-drying of sacrificed meat
Tawaf: circling around a sacred site
Tawatur: consecutive reporting, the tracing of one particular hadith to its respective chronological chain of narrators
Tawhid: the concept of the absolute Unity of God, the belief that God is One and indivisible, One - and Only One - God
Tawwabeen: the penitent ones, those who repented their reluctance to go to the rescue of Imam Husayn when he was confronted with Yazid’s armies and who enlisted under the military command of al-Mukhtar and pursued those who massacred Imam Husayn Ibn ‘‘Ali Ibn Abù Talib (‘a) and killed them
Thakireen: those who often mention the Name of the Almighty and Glorify Him
Thayyib: a deflowered woman, a widow or divorcee
Thireed: pieces of bread cut and dipped in stew
‘Ulema’: plural of ‘alim, scholar-theologian
Umma: nation, group of people
Umm walad: "Freed mother of son" means a bondmaid who bears sons by her master and who is set free on that account but remains in his custody as his wife.
‘Umra: the pilgrimage to Mecca during any time other than the prescribed (first ten) days of the month of Thul-Hijjah
Usul: the basics of jurisprudence
Wajib: compulsory, obligatory, binding
Wali: person to whom wilayat is obligatory; a waali, however, is a governor appointed by a Muslim ruler of a higher authority (such as a caliph, a sultan, etc.)
Waqf: a charitable trust
Wasi: successor to a prophet
Wilayat: a binding supreme authority that combines both temporal and religious powers
Wisal: fasting the last day of every lunar calendar month
Wuďu: ablution
Zakat: Literally, it means "purification;" it is a compulsory 2.5% tax on one of three categories of wealth: 1) metal coins (gold, silver, etc.), 2) grain crops (barley, wheat, grain, rice, etc.), and 3) animals raised for food consumption. Zakat is somehow a complicated issue, and for details, readers are advised to consult books dealing with fiqh. Among its types are: zakat al-mal (taxable wealth accumulated during one full year), and zakat al-fitr (a tax to be paid by the head of a household at the end of the fast of the month of Ramadan).
Zihar: the making of a similitude between the back of one’s wife with that of his mother; i.e. saying that his wife’s back looks similar to his mother’s back (zahr)