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Arabic Word of the Day: سَلَام

Arabic Word of the Day سَلَام /Salām/

Hello and welcome back! 

The word سلام (Salām) means peace, safety, peace of mind, and being free from imperfections and flaws. Its origin is rooted in the concept of “being safe.”

A. Main Meaning

This Arabic word has many meanings and is used based on its context in different everyday situations.

1. One of the names of Allah the Almighty السَّلام

As-Salam (The giver of peace)

2. Peace, safety, peaceful living, and the opposite of war.

For example, فِي بَلَدِي نَعِيشُ بِسَلَامٍ /Fī baladī naʻīshu bisalāmin/

 (In my country, we live in peace.)

 3.  Accepting and embracing everything, and from which comes the name of the religion “إسلام” “Islam”. 

In this context, the word represents the acceptance of divine commands.

4. Having physical and psychological well-being, indicating being unharmed.

Example 1: عُدْتُ مِنْ اَلسَّفَرِ بِسَلَامٍ /Udtu min aalssafari bisalāmin/ (I returned safely from my trip.)

Example 2: وَصَلَنَا شَاطِئُ اَلْبَحْرِ بِسَلَامٍ /Waṣalanā shāṭiʼu aalbaḥri bisalāmin/ (We reached the sea shore safely.)

 

 B. Collocations with the Word سَلَام

The term “السلام”  (As-salam)  peace” often collocates with other words to give specific meanings, such as:

1. اَلسَّلَام عَلَيْكُمْ /Aalssalām ʻalaykum/

(Peace be upon you)

It is the greeting of Muslims and its response is “Peace be upon you, too” (Waʻalaykum aalssalāmu) وَعَلَيْكُمْ اَلسَّلَامُ, and it is the greeting of the people of Paradise, as God Almighty says in the Quran;

2.   تَحِيَّتُهُمْ فِيهَا سَلَامٌ – سورة يونس، آية ١٠  /Taḥīyatuhum fīhā salāmun/

“Salam (Peace, safe from each and every evil) will be their greetings therein (Paradise)!” Surat Yunus – 10

3. دَارُ اَلسَّلَامِ /Dāru aalssalāmi/

 (The dwelling of peace, i.e. Paradise).

4. عَبْدُ اَلسَّلَامْ /Abdu aalssalām/ 

(A male name that means one who worships Allah As-Salam).

5. حَمَامَة اَلسَّلَامِ /Ḥamāmah aalssalāmi/

(Dove of Peace)

This Arabic expression represents a white bird holding a green branch, symbolizing peace.

6. سُبُلُ اَلسَّلَامِ /Subulu as-salāmi) /Pathways to Peace/

(Ways of ensuring survival and safety)

C. Derivations from the Word سَلَام

Derived from the same root, other words include:

1.  مُسَالِمٌ (Musālimun)

one who does not harm anyone.

2.  سَلِيمٌ (Salīmun) 

undamaged or unharmed.

3. سِلم (Silm) 

 peace.

4. إسلام (Islam)

the religion of Islam

5. مُسْلِمٌ (Muslimun)

one who follows Islam.

Word in the Quran, Hadith & Poetry

In the Quran

وَإِذَا جَاءَكَ الَّذِينَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِآيَاتِنَا فَقُلْ سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُمْ

٥٤ – سورة الأنعام

When those who believe in Our Ayat come to yousay: “Salamun `Alaykum” (peace be on you)

Surat Al-Ana’am – Verse 54

In Hadith

We have a number of variations of the word Salam appearing in Hadith by the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him)

اَلْمُسْلِمُ مَنْ سَلمَ اَلْمُسْلِمُونَ مِنْ لِسَانِهِ وَيَدِهِ

(Aalmuslimu man sallama aalmuslimūna min lisānihi wayadihi)

Which means:

 “A Muslim is one from whose hand and tongue the Muslims are safe.” 

 In Poetry

We have also this verse in Arabic poetry:

سَلَامٌ لِأَرْضٍ خُلِقَتْ لِلسَّلَامِ وَمَا رَأَتْ يَوْمًا سَلَامًا

(Salāmun liʼarḍin khuliqat lilssalāmi wamā raʼat yawman salāman)

Which means:

“Greetings to a land made for peace, a land that bore witness to none.”

D. Synonyms for the Word سَلَام

Finally, synonyms for the term “peace” (Salām) سلام exist in Arabic, such as the words “safety” and “peace of mind,” all carrying the same meaning. 

Thus, we can say:

أَنَا أَعِيشُ فِي سَلَامٍ / أَنَا أَعِيشُ فِي أَمَانٍ / أَنَا أَعِيشُ فِي طُمَأْنِينَةٍ

(Anā aʻīshu fī salāmin / anā aʻīshu fī amānin / anā aʻīshu fī ṭumaʼnīnatin)

Which means:

“I live in peace,” “I live in safety,” and “I live in peace of mind.”

 

Now, if you would like to understand more about Arabic culture and Arabic words, we invite you to visit our free Planner to enrich your Arabic vocabulary and learn more about the Arabic language. Start your enriching journey today!

 

Dania Ghraoui
Dania has worked as a language instructor and translator for almost 10 years. She has a special interest in the Arabic language and learning methods.
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