Sunday, November 06, 2005

Islam and submission

The Islam means "peace" movement started in the US. It was first echoed by the Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and then to the masses by Bush and Blair in their speeches after Sept 11. For someone like me who has been researching Islam for almost 15 years it came as a bit of a surprise. Islam is today peaceful and has many peaceful tenets but it definitely does not mean peace. At its founding it was spread by war and one of the seminal events in the religion is the Battle of Badr where the Prophet against overwhelming odds defeated the Meccans and established his lordship over his home city once and for all.

Islam means"submission" (as in submission to Allah) and Muslim means "one who submits".

The confusion of what Islam means has also permeated relatively well informed Muslims, so I figured that I should do some research to correct this misinformation.

Here are two good explanations that I hope will provide some clarification and reset at least in theminds of my readers what the true meaning of Islam before the marketing dept of CAIR got a hold of it


Most Arabic words are based on a trilateral rootsystem, such as k-t-b or s-l-m. The words formed fromthese roots often have a connection to one another(kataba is to read, kitâb is a book, maktaba is alibrary, and so on), but not always (a katîba is asquadron of soldiers). In other words, roots have acore meaning but also include unrelated words.In the case of s-l-m, salâm means peace and salâmameans safety. But the root also has many meaningsunconnected to this core, such as salam (a variety ofacacia) sullam (ladder), sulâmâ (digital bone in thehand or foot), sulaymâni (mercury chloride), aslama(to betray) … and islâm (submission).There is no connection in meaning between salâm andislâm, peace and submission. These are two distinctwords with unrelated meetings. In brief, "Islam =submission."


Also check out the following link if you still have doubts...(this quotes the associated surah directly)


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