By EEMA MANZOOR
April 1st, 2018
“Islamophobes, or anyone weary of Islam, often view the words “Allahu akbar” as a sign that people are about to die or kill others. Even many people who don’t necessarily dislike Muslims cower a bit on the inside if they hear a person say “Allahu Akbar”.”
The loud ranting, extreme right wing Internet personality, Tomi Lahren (not so famously) said in one of her “Final Thoughts” rants that “Allah Akbar (insert the classic American twang) is the problem!”
By definition, “Allahu Akbar” is translated to “God is Great.”
Islamophobes, or anyone weary of Islam, often view the words “Allahu akbar” as a sign that people are about to die or kill others. Even many people who don’t necessarily dislike Muslims cower a bit on the inside if they hear a person say “Allahu Akbar”.
And that’s totally understandable.
If the only exposure a person has had to those words, is when it was associated to terrorism by the media, a person will naturally become classically conditioned to fear those words.
But, the real purpose of saying Allahu Akbar is different.
“God is Great” is the literal translation, but the depth of the meaning is that “God is Greater”.
How do Muslims, that actually follow the teachings of Islam use Allahu akbar? We use it to pray. Muslims pray five times a day. Sometimes more. Depending on the person, sometimes less. But throughout the prayer we are constantly saying “Allahu Akbar.”
This phrase is actually used as a reminder of humility. “God is Great” is the literal translation, but the depth of the meaning is that “God is Greater”. Allah is greater than this earth. Allah is greater than the temporary life here. Allah is greater than materialistic things. Allah is greater than me.
Allahu Akbar is used as a recognition that Allah, God, Yahweh, exists, and is above and beyond anything we can imagine. It is our acknowledgement of our reliance on Allah, as well as a reminder that we don’t live with our hearts given to this earth, but rather we live with our hearts attached to the One who created them.
It is, Allah is greater than my pride, Allah is greater than my anger, Allah is greater than my wealth, Allah is greater than my love.
Muslims have a saying, “Allah is closer to you than your jugular vein.” When we say Allahu Akbar and remember Allah’s greatness, while remembering Allah knows our name, affairs, thoughts, feelings and is constantly caring for us, our love for Allah grows. The reflection of the concept that Allah is Greater, yet Allah is close, is what allows a Muslim to truly realize the depth of their relationship with God, as well as realize the importance of the relationship. It places humility and modesty in prayer, it places love in the heart, and it places peace in the soul.
How then could “Allahu Akbar” be the problem?