Thursday 21 November 2019

99 Attributes of Allah: As Salam - The Giver of Peace

As-Salām " ٱلْسَّلَامُ " The Giver of Peace, The Ever-Tranquil is He, Allāh, the Almighty, The Source of Peace, The Flawless, The Source of Wholeness and Well-Being.

Everyone wishes to be in peace and let others be in peace too. All greetings around the world begin with peace and Who else would be better giver and wisher of peace can be other than the Creator of the world? Allah, the As-Salām is the ultimate source of giving peace and tranquility to the entire mankind.

The Arabic word Salām (pronounced Salaam) comes from the root letters seen-laam-meem (S - L - M) that is salama which denotes safety, security, freedom and immunity. From the same root originates the Muslim greeting “salaam”. In Surah al-Furqan Ayah 63, it is said, “and when the ignorant address them [harshly], they say [words of] peace,” meaning they don’t want anything to do with their conversation. 

As Salām as an attribute of Allah appears, along with many other attributes of Allah, in the 23rd verse of Surah 59. Al-Hashr:

هُوَ اللّٰهُ الَّذِىۡ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ​ۚ اَلۡمَلِكُ الۡقُدُّوۡسُ السَّلٰمُ الۡمُؤۡمِنُ الۡمُهَيۡمِنُ الۡعَزِيۡزُ الۡجَـبَّارُ الۡمُتَكَبِّرُ​ؕ سُبۡحٰنَ اللّٰهِ عَمَّا يُشۡرِكُوۡنَ‏ 

(59:23) He is Allah: there is no god but He: the King, the Holy, the All-Peace, the Giver of security, the Overseer, the Most Mighty, the Overpowering, the All-Great. Exalted be He from whatever they associate with Him.

Here in this verse above, the attribute As Salām as used in the original means peace and Secure, Allah’s being called As Salām means that He is peace and safety personified. He is far exalted that some calamity or weakness or defect should befall Him, or His Perfection should suffer a decline or blemish.

Many seek peace by struggling, battling and trying to impose their will on others, yet external peace will only prevail as a reflection of inner peace. The only path to outer peace is awareness of the tranquil depths of  inner peace, and the only source of such inner peace is the One known as as-Salām.

When Muslims greet each other and say “Asalaam o Alaykum (السلام عليكم),” we mean, “You’re safe from me and you’ll not receive any sharr [evil] from me.” Therefore, it is incumbent upon the other Muslim an appropriate response to such a greeting is "and upon you be peace" (wa-ʻalaykum as-salām).

The Hebrew greeting shālôm ʻalêḵem, (שלום עליכם) is the equivalent of the Arabic expression "Asalaam o Alaykum (السلام عليكم)", the response being עליכם שלום ʻalêḵem shālôm, 'upon you be peace'.

وَاللّٰهُ يَدۡعُوۡۤا اِلٰى دَارِ السَّلٰمِؕ وَيَهۡدِىۡ مَنۡ يَّشَآءُ اِلٰى صِرَاطٍ مُّسۡتَقِيۡمٍ‏ 

(Surah 10. Yunus: 25) (You are being lured by this ephemeral world) although Allah calls you to the abode of peace and guides whomsoever He wills to a straightway.

In the verse above, Jannah has been called Dar-us-Salām because it will be free of all grief, death, worries, tensions, fatigues, enmities, hatred, and will be a place of safety and tranquility. 

From the root word S-L-M, following words are derived, which all mainly mean peace:
  • سلام salām 'Peace'
  • السلام عليكم as-salāmu ʿalaykum 'Peace be upon you'
  • إسلام Islām 'Acceptance, entrusting one's wholeness to God'
  • مسلم Muslim 'One who Accepts'
  • تسليم taslīm – 'delivering SLM – to give a salutation or a submission'
  • إستسلام Istislām –'the act of submission'
  • مستسلم mustaslim – One who submits – no longer seeking opposition/conflict, the one who has submitted
  • سالم sālim – 'subject of SLM' – its SLM, 'the vase is SLM', 'the vase is whole, unbroken'
  • مُسَلَّم musallam – 'undisputed'
The most precarious situations to which human beings are exposed are three: The time of birth, the time of death, and the time of resurrection. So Allah honored Prophet Yahya (peace be upon him) in all these three situations, granting him peace, safety and security against their woes. He saved him from the perils of all these three situations and granted him security against fear. 

Muslims are repeatedly enjoined by the Holy Quran to disseminate peace and to be receptive to those who offer it:

O you who believe! Enter into peace one and all... (2:208) And if they incline to peace, do incline to it too and trust in Allah. (8:61) And the servants of al-Rahman are the ones who walk on earth humbly, and when the ignorant ones address them, they say: Salam (Peace)! (25:63) And when those who believe in Our Signs come to you, say: Peace be on you! Your Lord has ordained mercy on Himself... (6:54) So turn away from them and say, Peace! For they shall soon come to know. (43:89)

The greeting of peace is an integral part of the creed of Islam. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) would quite often enjoin the Muslims to disseminate the greeting of peace among them. The Prophet of Allah has been quoted as saying at many a instance: 

"Disseminate the greeting of peace among you so you may achieve peace and security. Whoever upholds three things will have combined in him the meaning of conviction: (1) fairness to his own self, (2) disseminating of the greeting of peace to everyone, and (3) spending wisely out of what he saves." Afshu al Salama baynakum: Disseminate the greeting of peace among you.

In one of his supplications, the Messenger of Allah used to say, "Lord! Make us harbingers of peace to Your friends!" The Holy Quran tells us that the name of Paradise is "Dar al Salam," the abode of peace; He, Glory and Exaltation to Him, says, 

لَهُمۡ دَارُ السَّلٰمِ عِنۡدَ رَبِّهِمۡ​ وَهُوَ وَلِيُّهُمۡ بِمَا كَانُوۡا يَعۡمَلُوۡنَ‏ 

(Surah 6. Al-An'am:127) Theirs shall be an abode of peace with their Lord - their Protector - in recompense for all they have done.

We must therefore always be seeking peace, security and safety from none other than Allah, the As Salām, for there is no safety in the whole universe except that which is attributed to Allah for He is the Creator Who designs and controls all things. If you are afraid, remember Him, and He will fill your heart with peace. If you get connected with Him, He purifies you from all defects and faults. He guides you to peaceful ways in your business, in your marriage and in your relationships. If you adhere to His commands and enjoinments in the Qur’an, He will guide you in everything and every issue, (work, provision, health, marriage and children) in peaceful ways. He invites you to the Home of peace that is Jannah.

You may refer to our post "99 Attributes of Allāh" for complete list of 99 attributes of Allah Almighty with meaning and explanation.

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