Glossary


Love

It is a fantastic feeling

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Aza

the offering of condolence after death. People gather to present their condolence to the bereaved in gatherings that may involve Quran recital or the charitable dispensation of food or alms.

Baraka

blessing, or effusion of grace. ; "Baraka is the secret essence (sirr) of Allah, his prophets and his walis in things (’ashya’)” (Amin 1999)

Barzakh

isthmus:A barzakh, in the Quran, is the isthmus, or the state between life and death. It seems to have both a temporal and spatial dimension, as al-barzakh, or dar al-barzakh, is both the time between death and resurrection and the link between heaven and earth. It is also one of the laudatory terms used to describe both living and dead walis, as they are considered an isthmus or a link between God and his subjects. It is also, especially from the Ottoman period onwards, used to indicate ‘shrine.’

Bid’a

innovation, a heretical deviation from Islamic law, and the practices of the forebears.

Dafn

burial madfan: literally, site of burial, used more in the modern period to denote a built-up structure over a grave.

Darih

shrine (mostly Ottoman to Modern).

Dthikr

‘mentioning’ or ‘remembering’, a Sufi ritual involving the repetition of the names of God or of a certain religious formula as a means of contemplating God. (Taylor 1999)

Du‘a’

underground burial crypt.

Al-Fatiha

The 1st chapter of the Quran, normally recited to invoke blessing on the souls of the dead.

Hawsh

Medieval – Ottoman: Funerary enclosure. Modern: Walled graveyard, generally belonging to one family, with sheltered area, possibly with a building that provides for overnight accommodation.

Jami‘

congregational mosque.

Jiwar

vicinity; the idea that it is preferable to be buried in the vicinity of good Muslims.

Janaza

funeral, (pl. jana’iz): section in religious treatises related to funerary practices (rites or burial and remembrance)

Kafan

shroud of the dead; takfin : the ritual shrouding of the dead.

Karama

miracle performed by a Muslim wali as a sign of the grace God has bestowed upon him or her (Taylor 1999)

Khanqah

Sufi hospice.

Khatima

complete reading of the Quran.

Khus

palm frond, traditionally put on graves.

Madthhab

(pl. madthahib) four legal schools of Sunni Islam, viz., Shafi‘i, Hanafi, Hanbali, Maliki.

Madrasa

Ayyubid – Ottoman: religious college. Modern: school.

Cairo

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