Arabian Peninsula A region of the Middle East, dominated in area and to some extent politically by Saudi Arabia. The other nations are Yemen, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Oman. It is a geographical subcontinent rather than an easily defined bloc or group of nations; Israel, Jordan, Syria and Iraq (or parts thereof) are sometimes counted as being parts of the Arabian Peninsula. Since most of the holy places in Islam are located in the Arabian Peninsula, it is place of great cultural, emotional and political resonance to Muslims.

Arafat A hill to the east of the city of Mecca. Muslims believe that this was the place where the Prophet Muhammad delivered his farewell sermon. Often called Mount Arafat.

arba-ah Four.

arbitrage Buying an asset in a market where the price is low and selling it where the price is high. It is seen as risk-free, although in reality it is inevitable to avoid risk completely. Price fluctuations or even an unexpected devaluation of currency could turn a profit into a loss.

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arbun A non-refundable deposit or down-payment agreed in contractual arrangements and paid by the buyer to the seller to ensure that the contract is fulfilled during a specified time. The down-payment becomes part of the price.

ARCT African Regional Center for Technology (French: Centre Régional Africain de Technologie (CRAT)).

‘ard Land.

‘ariyah The loaning of an item for an indefinite period of time.

Ark?n singular rukn    The five rukn “pillars” of Islam.


arkans Principles.

arranger fees A charge for the organisation of a loan or financing arrangement.

Articles of Faith, the Six The Six Articles of Faith are the six things that Muslims must believe in. They are: (i) acceptance of Allah as the One God; (ii) angels; (iii) prophets; (iv) the Scriptures; (v) The Day of Judgment and the afterlife; and (vi) predestination.

A.S.  (Alayhi s-sal?m)   This acronym evokes a blessing and is appended to the names of the prophets who came before Muhammad. It will also be applied to the mothers of those prophets. When following a woman’s name, the feminine form is ?Alayha s-sal?m.


asaba Male inheritors of the legacy of a male family member. The primary inheritors are sons, followed by grandsons, then the father, brothers, uncles and finally cousins.

asabiyyah, asabiyah Solidarity; the collective consciousness and cohesiveness of a group.

asatir, asatiir Myths.

ashaab al-maal Plural of sahib al-maal, which is synonymous with rabb al-mal.

Ash’ari A Sunni school of orthodoxy named after the scholar Abu al Hasan al Ash’ari. The thinking marked the first real break from the Christian influenced orthodoxy and deals with free will and the nature of God in human experience, and discourages the arrival at moral positions without reference to the Qur’an.

Ashura A day-long fast on the 10th day of Muharram, not to be confused with Ramadan.

asid Able to be violated.

ask A common shortened term for ‘ask price’.

ask price In economic terms, the ask is the price at which a security is put up for sale.

asl The origin or source, or root or principal


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