Ahmed, New Age Islam
triliteral root word slm (sīn lām mīm س
ل م) is common for the following Arabic words:
- Nominal noun as a greeting meaning “peace” and as a noun meaning peace as in
“… if they remove themselves from you and do
not fight you and offer you peace (l-Salama) ....”
a noun meaning submission as in 16:28
ones whom the angels take in death [while] wronging themselves, and [who] then
offer submission (l-salama), [saying], "We were not doing any evil."
But, yes! Indeed, Allah is Knowing of what you used to do.
– also means acceptance as in 33:22, peace as in 33:56 and submission as in
33:22 And when the believers saw the companies,
they said, "This is what Allah and His Messenger had promised us, and
Allah and His Messenger spoke the truth." And it increased them only in
faith and acceptance (tasliman).
Indeed, Allah confers blessing upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do
so]. O you who have believed, ask [Allah to confer] blessing upon him and ask
[Allah to grant him] peace (tasliman)
But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you, [O
Muhammad], judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and
then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and submit
(wayusallimū) in [full, willing
– meaning submission as in 2:112 Yes [on
the contrary], whoever submits (aslama) his face in Islam to Allah while being
a doer of good will have his reward with his Lord. And no fear will there be
concerning them, nor will they grieve.
acceptance as in 49:17 They consider it a
favor to you that they have accepted Islam (aslamu). Say, "Do not consider
your Islam a favor to me. Rather, Allah has conferred favor upon you that He
has guided you to the faith, if you should be truthful."
– Submission to Allah
– Those whose submit to Allah as in 43:69 [You] who believed in Our verses and were
Muslims. Or 30:53 And you cannot guide the blind away from their error. You
will only make hear those who believe in Our verses so they are Muslims [those
who submit to Allah and follow the straight path shown by Allah].
– meaning devout and humbly submitting
as in 26:89 But only one who comes to
Allah with a devout heart (qalbe
words acquire newer meanings with their usage. Initially “Aslama, Tasliman,
Islam” may have only meant acceptance. Acceptance is however based on trust or
faith and to indicate both trust/faith and acceptance is to acknowledge a
relationship of peace and friendship rather than hostility. Salam used as a greeting may have initially
indicated only acceptance and trust and over a period acquired the meaning of
“peace” since acceptance and trust leads to peace. Now, after centuries of
peace and among friends and relatives, it is interpreted as a prayer of peace
for the one greeted as our minds are no longer suspicious of the other. Taslim is another word of greeting used in a
similar fashion which also means acceptance, or submission or peace depending
upon the context.
the context of Allah the word that initially meant acceptance, becomes
submission or surrender. We do not merely accept based on trust but submit or
surrender based on complete faith to Allah.
is similar in meaning to Salam and is from the same trilateral root. So, why
does the word Muslim and Islam not appear in their scriptures? It may have been
lost in translation and only the greeting form appears to have survived. It
however appears in the Aramaic Gospel of Mathew as ‘mašlmana’ from the root
word slm, the same as Muslimun in Arabic and means « submitted to God, » « he
who trusts in God, » « who commits himself to Him » to commit or hand oneself
over (or again to submit) to God. While translating, it has been rendered in
Greek by use of the verb paradidomi.
common root word for a greeting such as Salam and submission to God such as
Islam/Muslim is also found in other religions and cultures. For example,
Namaste is a greeting while namaha from the same root word means submission to
God. Namaste is combination of two words Namah (नम:) + Te (ते).
meaning is ‘Salutations to you’, or ‘I bow down to you’ or ‘Obeisance to you’.
The root of the word ‘Namaha’ is ‘Nam’ =Namati meaning to prostrate, ‘to
salute’ etc. The word ‘Tae’ is the dative case form of the pronoun ‘Tvam’
नमस् - bow, obeisance,
reverential salutation, adoration (by gesture or word;often with dative case
exempli gratia, 'for example' rāmāya namaḥ ,salutation or glory to rāma
every Mantra the prefix of Namah is generally added. Just for example Namah
Sivaya. Now this Mantra is practically indicating the holy name of Lord Siva.
Na means negation and Ma means false ego or Ahamkara. Therefore Namah means
surrendering to the name Siva. In other words to accept the supremacy of Lord
Siva means Namah Sivaya.
is the Sanskrit equivalent of Salam
Namaha is the Sanskrit equivalent of Islam or Muslim meaning (one who has)total
surrender/submission to God negating self and ego.
Allah Has Named All His
Devotees Muslim from Ancient Times
following verse makes clear that Allah has named those who follow His religion
“Muslim” both before and in the Quran.
And strive in His cause as ye ought to strive, (with sincerity and under
discipline). He has chosen you, and has imposed no difficulties on you in
religion; it is the religion (millata) of your father Abraham. It is He (Allah)
Who has named you Muslims, both before and in this (Revelation); that the
Messenger may be a witness for you, and ye be witnesses for mankind! So
establish regular Prayer, give regular Charity, and hold fast to Allah! He is
your Protector - the Best to protect and the Best to help!
are many more verses from which it is clear that the word Muslim was used to
mean one who submits to Allah in Islam.
The Magicians of Pharaoh Who
"But thou dost wreak thy vengeance on us simply because we believed in the
Signs of our Lord when they reached us! Our Lord! pour out on us patience and
constancy, and take our souls unto thee as Muslims (who bow to thy will)!
Devout Christians and Jews
And when it is recited to them (Christians and Jews), they say: "We
believe therein, for it is the Truth from our Lord: indeed we have been Muslims
(bowing to Allah´s Will) from before this.
Allen S. Maller calls himself a Muslim Jew.
Prophet Joseph or Yusuf
"O my Lord! Thou hast indeed bestowed on me some power, and taught me
something of the interpretation of dreams and events,- O Thou Creator of the
heavens and the earth! Thou art my Protector in this world and in the
Hereafter. Take Thou my soul (at death) as one submitting to Thy will (as a
Muslim), and unite me with the righteous."
But We found not there any just (Muslim) persons except in one house:
Prophet Yaqub or Jacob
Were ye witnesses when death appeared before Jacob? Behold, he said to his
sons: "What will ye worship after me?" They said: "We shall
worship Thy god and the god of thy fathers, of Abraham, Isma´il and Isaac,- the
one (True) Allah: To Him we bow as Muslim."
That was a people that hath passed away. They shall reap the fruit of what they
did, and ye of what ye do! Of their merits there is no question in your case!
Jesus And His Followers Were
(3:52) When Jesus found Unbelief on their part
He said: "Who will be My helpers to (the work of) Allah?" Said the
disciples: "We are Allah´s helpers: We believe in Allah, and do thou bear
witness that we are Muslims.
"And behold! I inspired the disciples to have faith in Me and Mine
Messenger: they said, ´We have faith, and do thou bear witness that we bow to
Allah as Muslims´".
Behold! the disciples, said: "O Jesus the son of Mary! can thy Lord send
down to us a table set (with viands) from heaven?" Said Jesus: "Fear
Allah, if ye have faith."
Nor would he (Jesus Christ) instruct you to take angels and prophets for Lords
and patrons. What! would he bid you to unbelief after ye have become Muslim?
Solomon and Queen Sheba were
She was asked to enter the lofty Palace: but when she saw it, she thought it
was a lake of water, and she (tucked up her skirts), uncovering her legs. He
said: "This is but a palace paved smooth with slabs of glass." She
said: "O my Lord! I have indeed wronged my soul: I do now submit in Islam
(aslamtu)), with Solomon, to the Lord of the Worlds."
The Prayer of Abraham
"Our Lord! make of us Muslims, bowing to Thy (Will), and of our progeny a
people Muslim, bowing to Thy (will); and show us our place for the celebration
of (due) rites; and turn unto us (in Mercy); for Thou art the Oft-Returning,
Behold! his Lord said to him: "Bow (thy will to Me):" (aslim)He said:
"I bow (my will) (aslamtu) to the Lord and Cherisher of the
And this was the legacy that Abraham left to his sons, and so did Jacob;
"Oh my sons! Allah hath chosen the Faith for you; then die not except as
Significance of The Term Muslim
Christianity and every other religion preaching submission to the One God are
sects of Islam and the generic term for the followers of Islam is Muslim. A
Muslim is one who believes in all the prophets as Messengers of Allah and
believes in all the scriptures as the revelations from Allah. He is not a
sectarian. Whether those who call themselves Muslim today are such
non-sectarians or not is a different question. Those who appropriate the terms
Islam and Muslim only to the followers of Muhammad are every bit as sectarian
as the rest.
The Non-Sectarian Approach That
Allah Commands Us
(2:135) They say: "Become
Jews or Christians if ye would be guided (To salvation)." Say thou:
"Nay! (I would rather) the Religion of Abraham the True, and he joined not
gods with Allah."
(136) Say ye: "We believe
in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Isma´il, Isaac,
Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to
(all) prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another
of them: And we bow to Allah as Muslims."
(22:34) To every people did We
appoint rites (of sacrifice), that they might celebrate the name of Allah over
the sustenance He gave them from animals (fit for food). But your god is One
God: submit then your wills to Him (in Islam): and give thou the good news to
those who humble themselves,-
(3:19) The Religion before
Allah is Islam (submission to His Will): Nor did the People of the Book dissent
therefrom except through envy of each other, after knowledge had come to them.
But if any deny the Signs of Allah, Allah is swift in calling to account.
(3:67) Abraham was not a Jew
nor yet a Christian; but he was true in Faith, and a Muslim, and he joined not
gods with Allah.
(3:83) Do they seek for religion other than
the religion of Allah?-while to Allah submit (aslama) all creatures in the
heavens and on earth, willingly or unwillingly, and to Him shall they all be
(84) Say: "We believe in
Allah, and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham,
Isma´il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and in (the Books) given to Moses,
Jesus, and the prophets, from their Lord: We make no distinction between one
and another among them, and to Allah are we Muslims (submissive)."
(85) If anyone desires a
religion other than Islam (submission to Allah), never will it be accepted of
him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost (All
(2:208) O ye who believe! Enter
into Islam whole-heartedly; and follow not the footsteps of the evil one; for
he is to you an avowed enemy.
Naseer Ahmed is an Engineering
graduate from IIT Kanpur and is an independent IT consultant after having
served in both the Public and Private sector in responsible positions for over
three decades. He is a frequent contributor to NewAgeIslam.com
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The devout people from all religions will have no problem
understanding the article and accepting what it says. They will find
in their own scriptures verses that resonate with the same message
and why should this not be so when every religion is from the same
God? For example, the Jews and Christians in the following verse:
Those to whom We sent the Book before this,- they do believe in this
(revelation):(53) And when it is recited to them, they say: "We
believe therein, for it is the Truth from our Lord: indeed we have
been Muslims from before this.(54) Twice will they be given their
reward, for that they have persevered, that they avert Evil with
Good, and that they spend (in charity) out of what We have given
them.(55) And when they hear vain talk, they turn away therefrom and
say: "To us our deeds, and to you yours; peace be to you: we
seek not the ignorant."
to give a modern example, people such as Rabbi Allen S. Maller who
calls himself a Muslim Jew.
have also given the Sanskrit equivalents of the words and the Hindus
will also find verses in their own scriptures that say the same
among the people
have problems. The
major objection will not be from people of other faiths but by those
who call themselves Muslim. The Malaysians for example, cannot even
countenance the Christians using Allah for God! It is primarily to such Muslims that the article is addressed because in their theology
(Sunni as well as Shia), all those who do not believe in the Quran
and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) are Kafir. GM sb is quite happy with the
way things are and has problems even when I say that Mushrik does
not mean Kafir.
(3:19) The Religion before Allah is Islam: Nor did the
People of the Book dissent therefrom except through envy of each other, after
knowledge had come to them. But if any deny the Signs of Allah, Allah is swift
in calling to account.
(20) So if they dispute with thee, say: "I have
submitted My whole self (aslamtu) to Allah and so have those who follow
me." And say to the People of the Book and to those who are unlearned:
"Do ye (also) submit yourselves (aslamtum)?" If they do (aslamu),
they are in right guidance, but if they turn back, Thy duty is to convey the
Message; and in Allah´s sight are (all) His servants.
(3:3) It is He Who sent down to you (step by step), in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law (of Moses) and the Gospel (of Jesus) before this, as a guide to mankind, and He sent down the criterion (of judgment between right and wrong).