Common Words

Common Words Used By Muslims

AL-HAMDU LILLAH: Praise be to Allah. Should be said on all occasions and especially after sneezing.

ALLAH: The Name of the Creator of the universe.

ASR: Late afternoon prayer

AYAH: Verse of the Holy Quran (also means a ‘sign’ of Allah)

BIDAH: Any innovated practices introduced in the religion of Islam.

BISMILLAH: ‘In the Name of Allah”, this statement is usually made by Muslims who are about to indulge in a lawful task.

DAJJAL: Anti-Christ.

DAWAH: Propagation of Islam through word and action, calling the people to follow the commandments of Allah.

DEEN: Usually translated as ‘religion’. Deen is a comprehensive word which means a total way of life, following the commandments of Allah.

DUA: Supplication: invoking Allah for whatever one desires.

EID AL-FITR: three day festival marking the end of Ramadan – the 9th month (the month of fasting).

EID-AL-ADHA: The feast of Sacrifice. This feast commemorates the Prophet Abraham’s obedience to Allah by being prepared to sacrifice his only son Ishmael. A four-day festival that completes the rites of pilgrimage and takes place on the 10th-13th of Dhul Hijjah (the last Islamic month)

FAJR: Early morning prayer

FATIHA: The opening Chapter of the Quran. Fatiha should be read in every prayer.

GHUSL: Full ritual washing of the body with water. Ghusl should be done after sexual intercourse, wet dreams, emission, menses, childbirth.

HADEETH: Sayings and traditions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

HAJJ: Pilgrimage to the Holy city of Makkah.

HIJAB: Veil worn by Muslim women for reasons of modesty and protection.

IMAM: A person who leads the prayer and also for a famous Muslim Scholar.

IMAN: Truth, faith and acceptance.

ISA: Arabic word for Jesus Christ.

ISHA: Night Prayer

ISLAM: literally means ‘submission to the will of Allah’.


JANNAH: Paradise.

JIBREEL: Angel Gabriel.

JIHAD: means struggling one’s utmost to be a better person in the sight of Allah, and to establish Islamic way of life.

JINN: a race of created beings that are made out of smokeless fire.

JUMMA: ‘Friday’, the Muslim’s day of gathering on Friday noon prayers.

KAABA: Holiest, and first shrine constructed for the worship of One God, Allah. Muslims face towards the direction of the Kaaba, Makkah.

KAFIR: Unbeliever, who have rejected the truth of Islam.

KHALIFA: A Muslim ruler of an Islamic State.

KHUTBA: Sermon.

MAGHRIB: Sunset Prayer


MASEEH: A title which means “Anointed” or ‘Christ’ Title given to Prophet Jesus.

MASJID: Mosque, places of worship for the Muslims. In one sense the whole earth is a Masjid for the Muslims, The dome of the heavens its roof.

MIRAJ: The night journey of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) from Makkah to Jerusalem and then through the realms of the seven heavens.

MUHAMMAD: The name of the final Messenger and Prophet of God to Humanity.

MUHARRAM: The first month of the Islamic Calendar.

MUSLIM: Literally means ‘submitting to the will’, i.e. to the will of Allah, the Almighty.

QIBLA: Direction in which all Muslims face when praying, which is the Kaaba, in Makkah, Saudi Arabia. The direction is north – east from New York.

QURAN: The last revelation of Allah given to Humanity, through his last Prophet and Messenger, Muhammad – peace be upon him.

RAMADAN: The month of Fasting, the 9th month of the Islamic Calendar.

SAHABI: Companion of Prophet Muhammad – peace be upon him.

SAJDA: Prostration, as in prayer.

SALAAM: peace

SALAAT: Prayer

SALLALLAHU ALAIHE WA SALLAM: means ‘may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. This phrase is recited whenever the name of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) is mentioned.

SAUM: Fasting

SHAHADA: The creed of Islam: ‘I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.


SHARIA: Islamic Law . It encompasses both the Quran and Hadith, the sayings of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

SHIRK: Associating partners with Allah. The grave sin of Shirk is not forgiven if a person dies in that state.

SUBHAN ALLAH: means ‘Glory be to Allah’.

SURA: Chapter of the Quran. Quran has 114 Suras or chapters.

TAHARA: purification of body, clothing and souls.

TAWHEED: The Divine Unity, in its most profound sense. Allah is One in His Essence and His Attributes and His Acts.

TAYAMMUM: Dry purification when water is not available or is detrimental to health.

UMRA: A pilgrimage to Makkah, but not during the Hajj period.

WITR: A prayer which has an odd number of Rakat (units). Usually referred to the last prayer of the night after the Isha prayer.

WUDU: Purifying with water before performing prayers.

ZAKAT: Obligatory Charity

ZUHR: Noon Prayer (early afternoon prayer)