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Don't get confused between the words 'Islam' and 'Salaam'

April 02, 2024, 07:27:22 pm Heba E. Husseyn: Details on Leila tul Qadr every Ramadan, links HERE.
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Author Topic: Don't get confused between the words 'Islam' and 'Salaam'  (Read 460 times)
TEAM MV Founder
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« on: August 01, 2008, 09:17:30 pm »



The word Islam means "submission" or the total surrender of oneself to the Allah Almighty.  The Monotheistic Faith of Islam originated from the times of Prophets Noah and Abraham (peace & blessings be on them) and Prophet Mohammed (peace & blessings be on him) was the final Prophet and Messenger of Allah who delivered the final Divine Message, the Glorious Quran.  Thus, the Quran has beautifully elucidated the term "Islam" as the ideology of total surrender to the Will of Allah.  While "Islam" is the ideology of surrendering to Allah Almighty alone, the word "Muslim" means a person who has completely surrendered their purpose of life to the Will of Allah.  Therefore, the terms "Islam" and "Muslim" in the Quran are intertwined and stand more as common nouns than proper nouns.  Regardless of a person's descent, official designation, race, color or language - if that person believes sincerely in the Monotheistic Faith as per the instructions in the Quran, he or she has embraced Islam and is a Muslim in the sight of Allah The Almighty. 
There are some Muslim writers and so-called scholars who give a very incorrect interpretation of the word "Islam."  They often say that 'Islam' is derived from the word 'salam' which means 'peace' and it's also a greeting.  Indeed 'salam' means peace and it is a greeting incumbent upon every Muslim when they meet others (reference V.24:61).  This is a commandment of the Quran.  But the term 'Islam' is not derived from 'salam.'  It's important to remember that both the words "Islam" and "salam" carry beautiful definitions, but they are two different terms with different meanings. 
The word "Islam" is of prime importance and comes before everything else.  To understand and accept the definition of the term Islam is the cornerstone of Faith, without which there can be no Faith. 
Many modern-day Muslim scholars, particularly those living in the West try to misinterpret the meaning of Islam by wrongly claiming that it's derived from 'salam.'  There are two reasons for it.  Sometimes it is genuine ignorance.  And at other times they distort the meaning purposely to promote inter-faith dialogues and appease the participants.  This is a very unethical approach. 
Please know, 'Islam' means complete surrender or submission to the Will and Power of Allah while 'salam' means 'peace' and is a pleasant greeting symbolic of compassion, etiquette and good manners that's mandatory on Muslims to utter when they meet each other.  There several Verses in the Noble Quran that mention salaam defined as 'peace' as a greeting.  E.g. as follows:

"Indeed, those who ward off (evil) are among gardens and watersprings. (And it is said unto them): Enter them in peace, secure."  15:45-46  Al-Hijr.

The original Arabic word for “peace” in the above Verse 15:45-46 is bisalāmin ..

"Theirs the fruit (of their good deeds) and theirs (all) that they ask;  The word from a Merciful Rabb (for them) is: Peace!"   36:57-58  Ya Sin.

The original Arabic word for “peace” in the Noble Quran is salāmun ..

But as for the word 'Islam' in the Quran means strictly submission to Allah alone.

Related post:

-  Islam and 'Muslim'
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TEAM MUSLIM VILLA The Avid Reader | Mom of 3 cute rascals
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« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2008, 04:47:03 pm »

Thanks for this sister.  I'm also of the same mind on this issue.  And you're right.  Many Muslim ulemas and scholars indulge in this misinterpretation.  Some say "Islam" and "salam" both mean peace.  Then again, some do say that "Islam" means total submission or obedience to Allah, but they discreetly also bring its connection with the term "salam" by saying that though Islam means submission/surrender/or obedience to Allah, it's derived from the word salam.  This indirect link is also something I don't follow.  Since Islam means total surrender in Faith and practice to Allah, hence it is a word by itself.  It is certainly not derived from a greeting.  Most importantly, as we know just too well, the Quran has made this point very clear.  Regarding 'salam' the Quran mentions about it in a separate verse as a greeting of peace from Allah obligatory upon believers when they meet each other. Sure Islam is a religion and a complete system of life based on peace and justice.  This ideology is reflected in the entire Quran, Chapter by Chapter.  Therefor, the word "Islam" includes peace but it has to be defined as surrender/submission/or obedience to the will of Allah Almighty.  This is exactly the way the Prophet (pbuh) led his life.

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Heba E. Husseyn
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« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2022, 04:37:47 pm »

Thank you sisters.  A very nice brief thread and a response to a lot of those apologists roving as "scholars" who love to distort everything in the Noble Quran.
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