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As-Salamu Alaykum: Greeting for Love and Peace in Islam


As-salamu alaykum السلام عليكم in Arabic is an Islamic expression used for greeting people. It’s equivalent to hello In English or salutes in french. Translation of this phrase means peace upon you, or may god protect you from any harm or peril.

Muslims around the globe say this phrase when they exchange greetings. Prophet Mohamed, peace upon him urged his nation to say it as a token of peace and tolerance, as Al-salam is of the names of Allah.

In this article, you’ll deeply know the meaning of as-salamu alaykum, why do Muslims say it, and what’re the etiquettes of saying it in Islam?

How Do You Pronounce As-Salamu Alaykum?

This video will show you as-salamu Alaykum pronunciation.

What’s as-salamu alaykum Meaning in Islam?

Abdullāh ibn Salām (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) say: “O people, spread the greeting of peace profusely, maintain kinship ties, feed others, and pray at night when people are asleep, you will enter Paradise in peace.”

Before Islam, Arab people in the Arabian peninsula greeted each other with ” Allah salute you”, which means May God prolong your age. After Islam, the greeting turned into as-salamu alaykum and it became common among Muslims. And it means may God save you from any harm or evil.

So, greeting in Islam is a reassuring message for the other addressee, and it translates as” be safe, I’ve no intention to do harm for you. It’s an expression of respect for all people.

The virtues of greeting in Islam

Greeting in Islam has excellent virtue. Allah (SWT) said in Surah An-Nisa: When a (courteous) greeting is offered you, meet it with a greeting still more courteous, or (at least) of equal courtesy. Allah takes careful account of all things.

So, Islam has urged us to greet and say assalamu alaikum to others- for many reasons.

  1. It spreads peace and love among people
  2. It’s a cause for entering the paradise
  3. It increases your good deeds
  4. It establishes strong bonds between Muslims in the community and unifies them.
  5. It creates a safe and tranquil atmosphere where people can live peacefully.
  6. It’s the greeting of Muslims in paradise as Allah SWT about believers who entered the paradise .and their greeting: ‘Peace!’; ( Surah Younus).

What Is the Origin of Assalamu Alaykum?

This sentence Is deep-seated in the Arabian peninsula before Islam. Even its starts with the beginning with history as Adam was the first one to say it as one of the hadiths mentions:

“The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Allah created Adam in His picture, sixty cubits (about 30 meters) in height. When He created him, He said (to him), “Go and greet that group of angels sitting there, and listen what they will say in reply to you, for that will be your greeting and the greeting of your offspring.” Adam (went and) said, ‘As-Salamu alaikum (Peace be upon you). (Sahih al-Bukhari).

What are the Variations of salamu alaykum?

Muslims often use this word or its variations when greeting, like :

  1. As-salamu alaikum wa rahmatullah (“May the peace and mercy of Allah be with you”)
  2. As-salamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh (“May the peace, mercy, and blessings of Allah be with you”). It’s used for addressing one single man, woman, or a group of men or/and women.

How to respond to as-salamu alaykum”?

When someone greets you, you can reply with those standard answers.

1) You can wish him back the same greeting. ‘Wa Alaikum salaam

2)You can say Wa-Alaikum-Assalaam-wa-Rahmat-Allah. This is adding ‘May Allah’s mercy be also with you in addition to Peace.

3)You can continue to the full reply ‘Wa-Alaikum-Assalaam-wa-Rahmat-Allah-wa-Barkaatahu.’

When Do You Use As-Salamu Alaykum?

There are many situations where you can use this phrase, most commonly used when greeting someone. But they can also use it as a lead-in phrase when making a speech or addressing a large audience.

Also, they can use it when they’re alone. When we conclude salat, we turn our faces rightward and leftward, saying Salam alikum.

When entering our house. Allah instructs us, in Quran, to say it even when knowing there’s no one inside to bring abundance to our life.

 But when ye enter houses, salute one another with a greeting from Allah, blessed and sweet. Thus Allah maketh clear His revelations for you, that haply ye may understand.

Read also: Subhanallah Meaning in Islam: Definition, Virtues, and Reward

Traditions of Saying As-Salamu Alaykum in Islam

Saying salam is one of the great, pleasing way of greeting people.

There are some etiquettes better to follow when greeting people

1. Say It Gently (In a Tender Voice)

Smile when you say greet anyone and say it gently and calmly, especially if some of them are asleep for not to disturb them.

Narrated Al-Miqdad bin Al-Aswad:

“Two of my companions and I went and presented ourselves to the Companions of the Prophet (ﷺ), for our hearing and sight had gone from suffering (hunger and thirst). But no one would accept us. So we went to the Prophet (ﷺ), and he brought us to his family, where there were three goats.

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Milk these.’ We milked them, and each person drank his share, and we put aside a share for the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ). The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) came during the night and gave the Salam such that it would not wake the sleeping person, and the one who was awake could hear it. Then he went to the Masjid to perform Salat. Then he went for his drink and drank it.”

2. Be Initiative

Greet all people, even those you don’t know and don’t wait for anyone to greet you first to exchange his greeting. Be initiative as Prophet Mohammed encouraged Muslims to do so

“The Prophet (ﷺ) said: Those who are nearest to Allah are they who are first to give a salutation. (Sunan Abi Dawud)

Rules about starting greeting.

  • the younger man/woman begins greeting those who’re older than them to show respect for him
  • The rider greets who’s sitting to show humiliation.
  • And the small group greets the large group. For example, if two people meet three ones, the two should initiate greeting the three.

3. No Specification

Don’t specify a greeting for some person in the group. Say salamu alaykum generally without specification can fuel envy and jealousy between the group’s members.

Generalizing salam for everybody can create solidarity and cultivate fraternity between Muslims, so it’s one of the laudable deeds.

“A person asked Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ). “What (sort of) deeds in or (what qualities of) Islam are good?” He replied, “To feed (the poor) and greet those you know and those you don’t know.” (Sahih al-Bukhari).

4. Repeat it Three Times

It’s advisable to repeat Salam three times if he thinks they don’t hear you.

Anas said that when the Prophet made a statement, he repeated it three times to be understood and that when he met a company and gave them a salutation, he did it three times. (Bukhari)

5. Say it out Loud

The basic rule is to say it loudly so people can hear you and respond to you, except in situations that require you to lower your voice out of respect.

Thabit ibn ‘Ubayd said, “I came to a group which included ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar who said, ‘When you greet, make it clearly audible, for it is a greeting from Allah containing great blessing.: (Bukhari)

6. Say Salam When Entering Your Home.

Whether it’s empty of people like if you’re living alone or when your family is inside. As Allah instructs us.

“when you enter houses, give greetings of peace1 upon each other – a greeting from Allah, blessed and good. Thus, Allah clarifies the verses [of ordinance] that you may understand. (Surah An-nur, 61).

7. Respond to the One who Greeted You

When someone greets you, saying as-salamu alaykum, respond to him with the same greeting or better than it.

Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said to me, “This is Jibril (Gabriel) who is conveying you greetings of peace.” I responded: “Wa ‘Alaihis-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuhu (May peace be upon him and the Mercy of Allah and His Blessings).”

[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

8.Say as-salamu alaykum When Entering the Mosque

This is the greeting of the masjid before even you greet any people inside.

And it’s a sunna from the prophet Mohammed. Muslims are ordered to say salam when they enter their houses

So, what about entering the houses of Allah!

9. Greet the People when Leaving the Setting

As you greet them when entering the setting, Do the same when leaving them

Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “When one of you arrives in a gathering, he should offer Salam to those who are already there, and he should also do so when he intends to depart. The first act of greeting is not more meritorious than the last.”

[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].

Common Questions about Greeting in Islam

Here, we write the most common questions

How Do You Write Assalamu Alaikum in Arabic?

السَّلاَمُ عَلَيْكُمْ ، أو السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

How Do You Write As-Salamu Alaykum in Urdu?

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته! الله تعالی آپ سے راضی ھو!

Does Islam Allow Muslims to Give “Salam” to Non-muslims?

Yes, Islam allows it. Salaam is a greeting and can be given to anyone regardless of religion.

Can Other Muslims Use Assalamu Alaikum for Greeting?

Yes, of course, they can use it. Allah said in surah An-Nisa, “And do not say to those who offer you ˹greetings of˺ peace, “You are no believer!”—seeking a fleeting worldly gain.

Also, it reflects the profound meanings of Islam, the religion of peace and tolerance.

Conclusion

As-salamu Alaykum is the greeting of Islam. It’s a symbol of peace and love between all humanity and one of the names of Allah (Al-salam). In this article, you’ve learned the origin of this greeting and the virtues of saying it.

Also, you know many of the etiquettes for greeting anyone.

They could be your family, neighbors, friends, or even total strangers. Just see the greeting and let the snowmelt. Love this article, then share it with your connections on social media so they can benefit too.

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