Table of Contents

Glossary

Allah Proper name of God in Arabic Qur’an.

Al-Ghazali Abu Hamid Muhammad Al-Ghazali (1058–1111 AD) He was a renowned Muslim scholar, philosopher, and Sufi. He left behind some seventy books on varied subjects to his credit.

Ahmed bin Hanbal Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal was founder of the Hanbali school of Islam. His manual of religious law is called “Musnad of Imam Hanbal.”

Believer The word in Arabic is Mu’min. It is a comprehensive word. Space does not permit to give all shades of its meanings. Briefly, a person who believes in God Almighty and does not associate a partner with Him, and acknowledges the prophet of God of his/her time (and the past prophets of God), and practices the religion according to the teachings of the revealed scripture brought by the prophet. For further reading, please refer to chapter 23 (“The believers”) of the Qur’an.

Caliphate Office of a Caliph (successor of Prophet Muhammad).

Coveting the world Islamic teachings permit enjoying the gifts of God (in moderation), but do not be attached to them.

Day of Judgment In Arabic, it is called “Qiyamah.” Other terms used for it are Day of reckoning, the Hour, Resurrection, Armageddon, etc.

Divine Attributes God’s Attributes (also known as His Names) in the Qur’an.

Essence of God The true knowledge about God.

Ghadeer-e-Khum A pond in Saudi Arabia near Mecca at a place called Khum. Prophet Muhammad (s) delivered his last sermon while returning from Hajj pilgrimage.

God-conscious A person who is aware of God’s presence all the time. A pious person.

Hereafter The Otherworldly existence that will follow the doomsday.

Hypocrites In the time of Muhammad, those who outwardly embraced Islam, but in reality, they were hostile to the new faith. As “insiders,” they plotted to weaken the faith community.

Ibn “Son of.”

Imam This Arabic word means a religious leader. This title may be conferred by God (spiritual leader), or a person may be selected by the people by virtue of his Knowledge and God-consciousness. Imam of a congregation is the one who leads the congregational prayers (Salaat).

Jinn These are ethereal creatures mentioned in the Qur’an. They are invisible to humans. Satan belongs to this category. Satan is not an angel, according to the Qur’an.

Ka ‘aba House of God in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. It is a cubicle approximately fifty feet by fifty feet by fifty feet. This symbolic structure is practically empty from inside. It was first built by the Prophet Adam (p), and then rebuilt by the Prophet Abraham. When praying, Muslims face toward it.

Knowledge of God God’s knowledge is all-inclusive; that of past, present, future, manifest and hidden. It is beyond human comprehension.

Knowledge of the Hour Knowing when this world will come to an end and the Day of Judgment begins

Maula It is an Arabic word, meaning master, protector, and friend.

Mer’aj The night of ascension. During his ministry, one night Angel Gabriel came on God’s command and took prophet Muhammad (s) to higher heavens. God shared some of His secrets with Muhammad. Majority of Muslim scholars believe it was a physical journey. A small minority of the scholars believe it was a vision that Muhammad had. For details, please log on to http://www.al-islam.org/al-miraj/.

Monotheism in the Qur’an It means that God is one and is indivisible. He has no partners, no associates, no helpers, no consort, no father and no son. He is uncreated, and everything else was created by Him. He is Eternal with no beginning and no end. He is Omnipotent and omniscient, and is high above what they ascribe to Him. When He intends a thing, he says to it “Be,” and “it is.”

Mountains as pegs “We have placed in the ground (mountains) standing firm, so that it does not shake with them” (Qur’an 21:31).

“Have We not made the earth an expanse and the mountains stakes (pegs)?” (Qur’an 78:6–7)

Peak of Eloquence English translation of the title of the book Nahjul Balagha

Prayer It has two meanings: 1) Ritual act of worship in Arabic known as “Salaat.” 2) Supplication.

Qur’an Holy scripture revealed by God to the Prophet Muhammad (s) through Angel Gabriel. In the west, it is also known as “Koran.”

Salaat Canonical daily prayers performed in a defined ritual fashion five times a day. Additionally, optional prayers may be performed before or after the obligatory prayers, or at other times.

Satan In Arabic he is known as “Shaytaan.” His proper name in the Qur’an is “Iblees.” He is also known as Lucifer in English. He was created from fire and is a Jinn. God promised that he would be doomed to Hell’s fire on the Day of Judgment because of his vanity and for disobeying God. Satan had no intention of repentance whatsoever; instead, he asked for certain requests and received them. Some of these included a lifespan until the day of resurrection, the ability to recruit comrades, ability to seduce and misguide humans through prompting in the heart. He seduces humankind by introducing a sense of superiority in relation to others, nurturing vain desires, greed, and much more. God promised that those who follow Satan will also be punished along with him. God says this in the Qur’an about Satan:

(Satan) whom God has cursed and he (Satan) said: “Most certainly I will take an allotted share of Your servants. Surely, I will lead them astray and stir vain desires in them” (Qur’an 4:118-119).

Syed Muhammad Razi Original compiler of the book Nahjul Balagha.

Syed Ali Raza Translated Nahjul Balagha in English

Throne of God It is a metaphorical term. The whole universe is His Throne or seat.

Tradition (Hadith) The proclamations, sayings, and teachings of Prophet Muhammad (s). With these and with the laws and guidance in the Qur’an, Muslims have a comprehensive system to follow in all aspects of their lives.