Words Matter

Inspired by the power of words and the impact it has on our relationship with Allah swt.

"Bismillah ir Rahman ir Rahim"

This is a print of an Islamic painting by Saleha

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Bismillah ir Rahman ir Rahim "In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful."

The Story

There’s an imbalance in our understanding of Allah and, as a
result, his gift to us: Islam. Words matter, specifically the ones we’ve heard
growing up. Words like haram, fire, and angry have shaped our perception of
Islam. Many of us are starting to relearn Islam later in life.


There’s an important Hadith where Aishah RA says about the Prophet's (PBUH) mission that if the first verses of the Quran revealed were about rules, the people would have rejected. Instead, if you look carefully at the first verses, they were about building a bond with Allah swt. Building a relationship.

The mistake we sometimes make in Islamic education is that we start by listing the rules. We grow up seeing Islam as a list of haram and halal. We grow up with a concept of Allah where if we mess up, we’ll go to hell. It’s the concept of Allah swt wrath without being balanced with Allah's mercy. He is Ar-Rahim, the most merciful. His mercy is far greater, but we’re often reminded of the wrath. We treat Him as a police officer when instead He should be the friend we speak to every day. There is no way to know Allah except by knowing His most beautiful names and understanding their meanings. It's our responsibility to be ambassadors of this caring and loving god. cc: Lecture by Yasmin Mogahed

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