Actual meaning of the word "Muslim"

Let’s discuss the Literal Meaning:

The actual meaning of the arabic word “Muslim” is:

The person who Submits and Surrenders (to Allah{swt}).

The person who follows the religion Islam is a Muslim. Islam literally means Surrender and Submission (only to the one true creator).

A muslim, by definition, means one who surrenders and submits to the laws of God. As almighty God is the creator, nothing in the creation actually works at its own free will, in order to maintain itself under the protection of its maker.

Are we really Free Human Being?

So… We, being Muslim, can not claim ourselves to be free Human Being. At the point when we surrender, we are automatically bound by certain code of conduct prescribed by our maker + cherisher + sustainer + supreme authority.

Non-Muslims can do whatever they want but we being Muslim are governed by Islam…

Common Misconception

So, we must get rid of the misconception… Muslim = Believer

A Muslim is not a person, who just believes that Allah(swt) exists. The sole believe of His existence and the fact that he created us, is not sufficient to be a Muslim.

Even Iblees was converted to Shaitan/Kafir when he refused to follow Allah(swt’s) command. Iblees knows and believes that Allah(swt) created him.

“[Iblees said]…you created me from fire and created him from clay.”{Al-A’raf: Ayat 12}

Can we argue us to be Muslims, just by believing that Allah(swt) exists? → Even Iblees believes that. His disobedience was his disbelief.

And [mention] when We said to the angels, “Prostrate before Adam”; so they prostrated, except for Iblees. He refused and was arrogant and became of the disbelievers. {Al-Baqarah: Ayat 34}

We can not simply say:-

“I believe that Allah(swt) exist, at least I am not a Kafir, what if I don’t follow few rules?”.

When we consider ourselves to be Muslim, we must surrender and submit to Allah(swt) trying to fulfill the obligations and restrictions, constantly being aware of the fact that we are returning back to Allah(swt). Please note that, we can only try our best, and ask Allah(swt) for his Hedayat and mercy, but can not excuse ourselves without even giving it a try.

Remember, we are in constant need of Allah(swt), He does not need us.

O mankind, you are those in need of Allah, while Allah is the Free of need, the Praiseworthy. {Fatir: Ayat 15}

The purpose of our creation was to Worship Allah(swt) alone. Please note that Worship is not just limited to prayer, zikr, fasting and zakah, this extends to all permitted righteous deeds.

And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me. {Adh-Dhariyat: Ayat 56}

The Best of Examples

Let’s consider prophet Ibrahim’s AS life as an example of submission toward Allah(swt). Whenever he was told something he JUST SUBMITTED.

When his Lord said to him, “Submit”, he [Ibrahim AS] said “I have submitted to the Lord of the worlds. {Al-Baqarah: Ayat 131}

Consequence: Ibrahim AS is in the highest of the Heavens closest so Allah(swt).

Example 1. After a long time Ibrahim AS was blessed with a child. Then, Allah(swt) ordered him to leave his wife and the child in the middle of a dessert. He didn’t argue and did it, even though he loved his child so much.

Consequence: Allah(swt) took care of his family.

Example 2. Further later, Ibrahim AS was commanded (through dream), to sacrifice that beloved child. He consulted with his child (Ismail AS), regarding this. Ismail AS responded, “do whatever you are commanded and you will find me among the patient ones”. He submitted again by putting a knife in the child’s neck (Subha’n Allah).

…he[Ibrahim] said, “O my son, indeed I have seen in a dream that I [must] sacrifice you, so see what you think.” He said, “O my father, do as you are commanded. You will find me, if Allah wills, of the steadfast.” {As-Saffat: Ayat 102}

Consequence: Allah(swt) replaced his son with a ram from paradise.


A Muslim is a person, who submits and surrenders to the rules prescribed by Allah(swt) and does not choose between What to Follow and What Not!! Ultimately, those rules are beneficial to us either we understand or not. And, it is a misconception that, following these rules are impossible for us.

“Allah does not burden a soul beyond that it can bear…” {Al-Baqarah: Ayat 286}