>> Monday, January 5, 2009
The Arabic phrase shown above is pronounced as Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim, and is a beautifully poetic phrase which offers both deep insight and brilliant inspiration. It has often been said that the phrase Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim contains the true essence of the entire Qur'an, as well as the true essence of all religions.
Muslims often say this phrase when embarking on any significant endeavor, and the phrase is considered by some to be a major pillar of Islam. This expression is so magnificent and so concise that all but one chapter of the Qur'an begins with the words Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim.
The common translation:
"In the name of God, most Gracious, most Compassionate".
fails to capture either the true depth of meaning or the inspirational message of this beautiful phrase. So, let's look deeper into the meaning of these wonderful words.
Origin and Spelling:
Every chapter of the Qur'an (except the ninth chapter) begins with the Arabic phrase:
However, there are many differing views on how this phrase should be transliterated using the English alphabet, as well as differing views on whether or not to include some of the Arabic rules of grammar. Consequently, one may encounter a variety of different transliterations of this glorious phrase, including:
bismillahi al r-rahmani al r-rahim
bismillahi al rahman al rahim
bismillah al rahman al rahim
bismi Allah al rahman al rahim
bismillahi-r rahmani-r rahim
bismillaah ir rahmaan ir raheem
bismillah ir rahman ir rahim
However, regardless of how one may choose write the English transliteration of the original Arabic, it is neither the writing of the words nor their pronunciation which is crucial, but rather we shall each be rewarded according to what is in our heart and how we act in the world.
Those who say these words with thoughts of self-aggrandizement, or selfish gains, or self-centered vain profit in any manner, will receive their just reward... suffering, pain and confusion. Likewise, those who truly dedicate every step of their life to the glory and service of the Ever-present One shall also receive their just reward... peace, love and beauty.
This phrase is truly an ideal to be expressed from the heart, an ideal to be expressed with the utmost sincerity, an ideal which leads us toward sacred purpose, the purpose for which we have been given life.
note: every prayer the muslim perform starts with Bismillah.
special thanks to... wahihuddin's web