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AZHAR UNIVERSITY

"Close by the palace rose the mosque, extending to the foot of Jabal al-Muqattam, named Jam-i Azhar, on 24th Jamada I, 359/April 4, 970, where a big library and school were erected. Since the title of Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet and the wife of Ali, was Az-Zohra (the bright) and in her honour, it was named Al-Azhar, being the masculine form of Az-Zohra. Philip K. Hitti writes in Capital Cities of Arab Islam (London, 1973, p. 114) that, "It took two years (970-972) to build.

Majalis-i Dawat-i Baqa

The chiragh-i rawshan is also solemnized for the longevity, prosperity and blessing of a person who is alive, known as dawat-i baqa. It also corresponds with the Indian tradition of the hayati majalis. It also exhorts that the Imam is an Everlasting Guide and Epiphany (mazhar) of God on earth. The believers must kindle the lamp of Divine Light in their hearts. Imam Sultan Muhammad Shah also said, "The lamp of the Divine Light exists in you and your hands. This is spoken metaphorically. This lamp always exists in you all" (Zanzibar, 13/9/1899).

Zakat :

It is a poor-tax @ 2

AZIZ (365-386/975-996), 15TH IMAM

"He was born on 14th Muharram, 344/May 10, 955 in Mahdiya. His name was Nizar Abu Mansur, surnamed al-Aziz bi-llah (August by the grace of God). He assumed the Imamate and Caliphate on 14th Rabi II, 365/December 21, 975. He was tall, broad shouldered, with reddish hair and large eyes having a dark blue colour.

BISMILLAH

The invocation bi-smillahi l-rahmani l-rahim (In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate) occurs 114 times in the Koran at the head of every sura except ninth, which is entitled Surat al-Tauba or Surat al-Bara'a, and also once in 27:30 as the opening of Solomon's letter to the queen of Sheba.

CONCILIATION AND ARBITRATION BOARD (CAB)

With the imposition of the New Constitution of the Shi'a Ismaili Muslims in 1986, the Conciliation and Arbitration Board (CAB) came into existence for the first time in the Ismaili world. Previously, the Ismaili Councils executed the judicial activities in the community. The judicial activities of the Council thenceforward consigned to the newly formed Conciliation and Arbitration Board.

Khums :

It means fifth part levied on the Muslim soldiers on the ghanima (booty) they received in the battle.

As for the khums, the Koran says: "And know that whatever thing you acquire in war, a fifth (khums) of it is for God and for the Prophet and for the near of kin (ahl al-bayt); and the orphans and needy and travellers" (8: 41)

In the period of the Prophet, when the ghanima (booty) was distributed, each soldier was to pay khums (fifth) from it. The accumulated amount of khums was divided into two parts as follow:-

BAB

The word bab mean gate, referring to the administrative head of the mission under the Fatimids. The word bab al-abwab means gate of the gates, referring to the highest rank after the Imam in the mission hierarchy of the Fatimids.

BLACK CLOTHES

The word aswad derived from swd means black, occurring seven times in the Koran (2:187, 3:106, 35:27). In the sense of an original black colour, the word aswad occurs only twice: "When you can tell a white thread from a black on in the light of the approaching dawn" (2:187) and "black mountains" (35:27). The word muswadd (dark-faced) is used in 16:58 and its parallel (43:17) to suggest the darkening of the face in the light of bad news as reflection of grief.

DASTBOSI

"The Persian word dastbos or dastbosi means the kissing of hands. It is an act of reverence. The Koran says, "Surely, those who swear allegiance to you do but swear allegiance to God, the hand of God is above their hand" (48:10). It clearly means that the hand of the Prophet was the hand of God. One can understand that the hand of the Prophet or the Imam is a blessed one for the believer, and kissing it is an act of reverence. The Koran says: "That you may believe in God and His apostle and may aid him and revere him" (48:9).

DAWR-I KASHF

The period following the dawr-i satr (concealment period) is known as dawr-i kashf i.e., an unveiling period, which is also known as dawr-i zuhur (manifestation period) when the Imam publicly makes his appearance. The period between Imam Taqi Muhammad and Imam Razi Abdullah was the dawr-i satr, and then Imam al-Mahdi appeared in Maghrib publicly, making the period dawr-i zuhur.

BADR, BATTLE OF

"The first battle fought between the Muslims and the Meccans about 80 miles from Medina was that of Badr, lying on the Arabian Peninsula near the Read Sea coast. The date given for the battle is 17th, 19th or 21st Ramzan, 2 A.H./March 13, 15 or 17, 624 A.D. Badr is mentioned explicitly once in the Koran (3:123), but there are allusions to it in at least 32 other verses.

D

DAWR-I SATR

"The word satr (pl. satur) is derived from astar, meaning hide, cover or shield. As it is said, masatra (he concealed enmity), or tastir (to hold within a curtain). According to Arabic-English Lexicon (New York, 1872, 4:1304) by Edward William Lane, the word satr means to veil, conceal or hide a thing.


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