What is a Kafir?

The Arabic term Kāfir (كافِر) is probably the most controversial and dan­gerous word in Islam. It is the op­posite of believer – in Arabic: Mu’min (مُؤْمِن). A sura (109) is even named The Disbelievers – in Arabic: al-Kāfirūn (سُورة الْكافِرُون). The so-called “disbelievers” are the enemies of the Muslims and[…]

Prison, ice cream, and shoes – etymology of words in Arabic (part 2)

Let’s continue with our journey into the etymology of Arabic words.   The word: لِيمان  (Līmān) or لُومان (Lūmān) This term is used in Egypt for prison. The word is found in Turkish as well but means something very different: harbor (مِيناء). The origin is perhaps from Byzantine Greek liménion (λιμένιον), from Ancient Greek limḗn (λιμήν). Some[…]

What is a Tāghūt?

Tāghūt (طاغُوت) is an Arabic term that is specifically used to denounce everything that is worshipped instead or besides Allah. The Arabic term Tāghūt (الطَّاغُوت) can refer to idols, a tyrant, an oracle or an enemy of Muhammad. Tāghūt means “one who has crossed the limits”, in plain language: a[…]