What is the meaning of Bismillah (In the Name of God)?
Bismillah, In the Name of God, is the beginning of all good things.
So we too shall start with it. This blessed phrase is a sign of Islam, and all
creatures constantly recite it in their unique way. If you want to understand
what an inexhaustible source of strength and blessing Bismillah is, then
listen to the following allegory:
For a stranger who travels in the deserts of Arabia, it is necessary to get
the protection of a tribal chief. Only then may he escape the mischief of robbers
and be sure his needs will be met. Traveling alone would be a waste of time
because of the enemies and unmet needs he must face.
Two men once set out on such a desert journey. One was humble, the other
arrogant. The humble man took the protection of a tribal chief, but the arrogant
one didnít. The former traveled everywhere in safety. Whenever he met a robber,
he would say, ďIím traveling in the name of such and such chief,Ē and the robber
would move on without molesting him. He would be treated with respect in every
tent he entered because of that name. By contrast, the arrogant one suffered
indescribable disasters throughout his journey. He trembled in constant fear
and was obliged to struggle and beg for his every need. He became low and mean.
Man is a traveler in the desert of the world
O arrogant soul! You are that traveler and this world is the desert. Your
weakness and poverty know no bounds. You face countless enemies and privations.
So, invoke the name of the Eternal Owner and the Everlasting Ruler of this world.
Only then will you be saved from having to beg from others and from constantly
living in fear.
The phrase Bismillah is so blessed a treasure that, by connecting
you to the infinite Power and Mercy of the Omnipotent and Merciful One, it transforms
your weakness and poverty into the most heeded of intercessors at His Exalted
Court. The one who, uttering Bismillah, acts in the name of God, is like
the one who joins an army and then acts under the stateís name. He fears no
one, does all things in the name of the law and the state and persists against