بسم الله - باسم الله

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by arabictongue, Feb 15, 2009.

  1. arabictongue New Member

    Arabic
    بسم الله

    What does it mean?
    Any examples?
     
  2. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    "In the name of God."

    Shouldn't it be spelled باسم الله?
     
  3. Abu Rashid

    Abu Rashid Senior Member

    Melbourne, Australia
    Australian English
    It means "In the name of God" as elroy mentioned.

    And is spelled correctly. This is the opening passage of each chapter of the Qur'an.
     
  4. Wadi Hanifa

    Wadi Hanifa Senior Member

    Riyadh
    Arabic
    It's one of those "exceptions that prove the rule" situations.
     
  5. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    Yes, I know that it's spelled that way in the opening of each sura, but I thought that was the exception, and that it should be spelled with an alif otherwise, but I guess this spelling is used even in the shortened form (it didn't look wrong to me, but I wanted to ask to make sure). I assume that spelling the shortened form with an alif is also correct, isn't it?
     
  6. djamal 2008 Senior Member

    arabic
    It is an exemption, we find the same contraction in the imperative form the verb ask, and say سل عن فلان.

    And to avoid the meeting of two Sakkanin, because the harraka of the alif is a sukun.
     
  7. Wadi Hanifa

    Wadi Hanifa Senior Member

    Riyadh
    Arabic
    I think that whenever you use the expression بسم الله, then you spell it this way. But if you want to say "in the name of the people of so and so" or "in the name the employees of our company etc." you would spell it as باسم.

    I think so but I'm not sure. Try giving it a google-test.
     
  8. elroy

    elroy Motley mod

    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    That makes sense. So it's بسم الله if it's used as an expression, but باسم الله otherwise (i.e. if the two words just happen to come one after the other, as in لا تستهتر باسم الله, for example).
     
  9. Mahaodeh Senior Member

    Arabic and English
    This is my understanding too.
     
  10. Wadi Hanifa

    Wadi Hanifa Senior Member

    Riyadh
    Arabic
    Well there you go -- I wasn't even thinking of that sort of situation. Yeah what you're saying sounds right to me, and to Maha as well, apparently.
     
  11. favq1 Junior Member

    Brazilian Portuguese
    Good morning,

    Our question is:
    Why is "bismi" in "bismillahi" written (in the Qur'aan) as بِسمِ and not بِإِسمِ?
    Is بِإِسمِِ = بِ + إِسمِ correct?

    Thank you in advance.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2011
  12. Mahaodeh Senior Member

    Arabic and English
    Well, actually it's اسم not إسم; the root does not contain a hamza and it's not pronounced unless it's the first word in the sentence (or speech) or it's proceeded by حرف ساكن.

    The Quran has some different spellings, based of archaic spelling methods. It's spelled بِسْم in the Quran because that's how it's pronounced.
     
  13. favq1 Junior Member

    Brazilian Portuguese
    Thank you for your answer.
    Two more questions:
    1. So بِاسمِ is how it should be vowelled?
    2. What is حرف ساكن?
     
  14. AndyRoo Senior Member

    London
    English
    Actually it should be like this:
    بِٱسْمِ . (The 'alif has hamzat al-waSl on it.)

    It's a letter with a sukoon on it (i.e. no vowel).
     
  15. Josh_ Senior Member

    the phrontistery
    U.S., English
    Yes, there is a hamzatu 'l-waSl, but as you know, in practice the symbol for it is rarely written in, even in a fully voweled text.
     
  16. arabiclearner New Member

    GB
    English
    It means "with/in the name of Allah" however it is not a complete sentence in itself. There is an implied verb that is missing which should comes at the end of the sentence to bring about افادة الحصر (which is a term used in the science of eloquence (3ilmul-balaagha)) so the meaning is restricted to the 'majroor' of the 'harf ul-baa'.

    So if one is writing a book and writes بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم then it can mean:

    بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم أكتب I write solely in the name of Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy,

    or:

    I begin solely using/in the name of Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy,بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم أبتدأ

    where as if someone was reading the basmallah (ie the words bismillaah) it could be understood as:

    بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم أقرأ
    I read solely using/in the name Allaah, the Most Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy.

    The intent of writing such phrases is showing the authors intent of making their specific action (ie reading, writing etc) solely for the intent, sake and pleasure of Allah and not doing it for anyone or thing elses sake. This practice was made popular by the coming of Islam and continues to this day.

    This kind of description and understanding of the phrase wont normally be found in everyday dictionaries but is more found in Islamic texts where such phrases are explained by Ulamaa who are grammarians/naHHwiyyen and lughawiyyen/scholars of the Arabic language. I've come across the same explanations from the likes of classical scholars and those up until now.

    However there is other uses of the phrase depending on the context, but this is the classical or Islaamic usage. Wallaahu A'alam/ Allaah knows best.

    Source:
    Based on sharh ul-basmallah min Sharh Usuulith-thalaatha, lish-Shaykh al-'Uthaymeen, رحمه الله تعالى.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011

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