Kalimah

Kalimah

), literally translates as 'the phrase'. It is referred to as such due to its centrality to Muslims in their faith. Affirmation of the Kalimah is the first of the 5 pillars of Islam and belief in the meaning of the Kalimah is the primary distinction of what defines a Muslim.

Arabic text - لا اله الا الله محمد رسول الله

English translation - There is no god but Allāh, Muhammad is Allah's Messenger

Pronunciation - lā ‘ilāha ‘illallāh muhammadur-rasūlullāh

The Kalimah & the Shahādah

The Kalimah is commonly confused with the shahādah, which is a declaration of belief in the Kalimah. The Kalimah is essentially a statement, and the Shahadah is a testimony confirming the Kalimah and its meaning.

Compare the 2 phrases below:

The Kalimah - There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is Allah's Messenger

The Shahadah - I testify that there is no god but Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is Allah's Messenger

Flags

Several national and regional flags display the Kalimah:

* The flag of Saudi Arabia, on a green background.
* The unrecognized state of Somaliland.
* From 1990 to 1992, the Islamic State of Afghanistan.
* From 1997 to 2001, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, under the rule of the Taliban.
* Per the 2004 draft constitution for Afghanistan, white script centered on a red background.
* The flag of the Supreme Islamic Courts Council of Somalia.
* One of the proposed flags of Uyghurstan.

Several other flags display the Kalimah, such as the flag of Hamas.

External links

* [http://muslimspeak.wordpress.com/2008/07/03/the-kalimahshahadah-in-various-languages/ Translations of the Kalimah & Shahadah into various languages]


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