Dictionary / Arabic - Turkish Terminology

KHALÎFAH – خليفة


Literally: A successor. A substitute.  A Caliph.

Âdam (as) and human beings as Allah's vicegerent on earth. A successor to Muhammad (ASM) and his representative as chief of Islam. The Caliph of Islam. The Imam of both worlds for the entire ummah.

A Khalîfah must be obeyed in the commands which conform to the Sharîah, like the jamâ’ah who follow the Imam in the salâh. The conditions of being a Khalîfah according to the Sharî’ah are:


1. Being a Muslim (al-Islam).

2. Being a Male.

3. Maturity (al-bulugh).

4. Being free (hurran).

5. Being rational (al-‘aql).

6. Sufficiency: being sufficient of qualities like farâsah, shajâ'ah, comprehension and subtlety of intellect for holding the trust (amanah)  (al-kifâyah).

7. Knowledgeable (al-‘ilm).

8. Justice and probity with all its conditions (al-‘adâlah).

9. Sound senses (salâmât al-hawas), physical fitness (salâmât al-a’dha).


قَالَ الَّذِى عِنْدَهُ عِلْمٌ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ اَنَا آتِيكَ بِهِ قَبْلَ اَنْ يَرْتَدَّ اِلَيْكَ طَرْفُكَ فَلَمَّا رَآهُ مُسْتَقِرًّا عِنْدَهُ

“"O people of sovereignty! If you wish to act with pure justice, endeavour to see and understand the face of the earth in all its details, like Sulaymân. For, by rising to the level of being informed whenever he wishes about every part of his realm, a just ruler and sultân who cherishes his subjects will be saved from ma’nawî responsibility or may rule with complete justice." Janâb-i Haqq in a ma’nawî manner says through the allusive tongue of this âyah:

“O Sons of Âdam! I bestowed on one of My ‘abds a broad realm, and so that he could act completely justly within it, I allowed him to know personally of all situations and events that occurred there. And since I have given all men the capacity to be khalîfah of the earth by fitrah, I gave them also the ability to see, consider, and understand the whole face of the earth in accordance with that ability, for My hikmah requires this. If individuals do not reach that point, men may reach it as a race. And if they do not reach it physically, they may reach it like the people of walâyah in a ma’nawî manner. In which case, you may take advantage of this great ni’mah. Come on, let's see you do it! On the condition you do not neglect your duties of ‘ubûdiyyah, strive to transform the face of the earth into a garden every part of which you may see, and the sounds of every corner of which you may hear.” The Words ( 265 )


“The first phraseوَعَلَّمَ آدَمَ اْلاَسْمَاءَ 1 verifies (tahqîq) the meaning of [the last phrase of the previous âyah]:اِنِّى اَعْلَمُ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ 2 and does tafsir what it states summarily and expounds its obscurities. Moreover, Allah Ta‘âlâ's khalîfah on the earth is to execute His ordinances and apply His laws, and this is dependent on complete ‘ilm. So too, the thread and drift of the previous âyah imply these: "So He created him and ordered his being, and breathed His rûh into him and did tarbiyyah him, then He taught him the names and prepared him for the khilâfah."

Then, since [Ta‘âlâ] had chosen Hazrat Âdam over and above the malâikah and distinguished him [by conferring on him] ‘ilm of the names, [and had made clear] in this question of his superiority his worthiness of the khilâfah, the context being one of challenge, He presented the things to [the malâikah] seeking their objections. So perceiving their impotence, they affirmed Ta‘âlâ's hikmah and were assured. For this reason, the Qur'an says: ثُمَّ عَرَضَهُمْ عَلَى الْمَلٰئِكَةِ فَقَالَ اَنْبِئُونِى بِاَسْمَاءِ هؤُلاَءِ اِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ3

قَالُوا 4 that is, they declared themselves innocent of what in his ananiyyah Iblîs had insinuated into their questioning, saying: سُبْحَانَكَ لاَ عِلْمَ لَنَا اِلاَّ مَا عَلَّمْتَنَا اِنَّكَ اَنْتَ الْعَلِيمُ الْحَكِيمُ 5 Then, once their impotence, arising from their lack of comprehensive abilities, had become clear, the context necessitated a statement of Âdam's competence, in order to complete the challenge. So it says: قَالَ  يَا آدَمُ اَنْبِئْهُمْ بِاَسْمَائِهِمْ 6 Then, when the underlying mystery of hikmah had become exemplified and apparent in Âdam, the context (al-maqâm) necessitated the former concise reply, making it a sort of consequence of the detailed explanation here. So [the Qur'an] says: قَالَ اَلَمْ اَقُلْ لَكُمْ اِنِّى اَعْلَمُ غَيْبَ السَّمٰوَاتِ وَاْلاَرْضِ وَاَعْلَمُ مَا تُبْدُونَ وَمَا كُنْتُمْ تَكْتُمُونَ 7

This use of conversation divulges and intimates that Iblîs' ananiyyah8 had spread among the malâikah and that the objections of one group intervened in their questioning.” Signs of Miraculousness ( 274-275 )


خَلِيفَة 9 suggests that before conditions on the earth were readied for human life, there were intelligent creatures for whose lives, conditions during the earth's early epochs were suitable. This  conforms with the questions of science (qadîyya al-hikmah). The most widely held is that these creatures were a species of jinn but they spread corruption [on the earth] so were succeeded by mankind.” Signs of Miraculousness ( 267 )


عَلَّمَ آدَمَ اْلاَسْمَاءَ كُلَّهَا10 which says: "Hazrat Âdam ‘Alayhissalâm's greatest miracle in the question of the supreme khilâfah was the teaching of the Names. Like the miracles of the other Prophets each allude to a particular human wonder, the miracle of Hazrat Âdam ‘Alayhissalâm, who was the father of all the Prophets and opener of the nubuwwah council, points almost explicitly to the final points of all human attainment and progress, and humanity's final goals. Through the tongue of allusion, Janâb-i Haqq (jalla jalâluhu) is saying with this âyah:

"O Sons of Âdam! Since as a proof of their superiority over the malâikah in the question of the khilâfah, I taught your father all the Names, you too, since you are his sons and the inheritors of his abilities, should learn all the Names and in your rank of the Supreme Trust (Amanah) demonstrate before all creatures your worthiness. For the way is open to you to rise to exalted rank such as the highest positions over all beings in the universe, and for vast creatures like the earth to be subjected to you. Come on, step forward, adhere to all of My Names, and rise! But your father was once deceived by shaytan, and temporarily fell to the earth from a position like Jannah. Beware! In your progress, do not follow shaytan and from the samâwât of Ilahî hikmah thus fall into the dhalâlah of nature. Make your sciences and your progress steps by which to ascend to that samâwât through paying attention to My Asmâ Al-Husnâ by raising your head continuously. Then you may rise to My Rabbânî Names, which are the haqiqahs and sources of your sciences and attainments, and you may look to your Rabb with your hearts through the telescope of that Name." The Words ( 270 )


“Despotism is dhulm and oppression. Constitutionalism is justice and Sharî’ah. The Sultân is the khalîfah in so far as he obeys the commands of our Prophet and follows his path. We too will obey him. Otherwise, even if they happen to be the sultân, those who do not obey the Prophet and oppress are bandits.” Biography (69)


“They asked me there: "What do you think about the Republic?"

I replied: "As my biography which you have in your hands proves, I was a religious republican before any of you, with the exception of the old Chairman of the Court, was born. A summary is this: like now, I was living at that time in seclusion in a remote tomb. They used to bring me soup, and I would give grains of the soup to the ants. I used to eat my bread having dipped it in the water of the soup. They asked me about it and I told them: the ant and bee nations are republicans. I give the grains to the ants out of respect for their republicanism."

Then they said to me: "You are opposing the Salaf as-Sâlihîn."

I told them in reply: “The four Rightly-Guided Khalîfah were both Khalîfah and Presidents of the Republic. Siddîq Al-Akbar (ra)11 was like a president to the ‘Asharah al-Mubashsharah12 and the Sahâbah. But not as a meaningless name and title, they were heads of the meaning of religious republic which bore the haqiqah of justice and freedom of the Sharî'ah.”The Rays ( 386 )

1 (And He taught Âdam all the names)

2 (I know what you know not)

3 (He presented the things to the malâikah and said: "Tell Me the names of those if what you say is true?)

4 (They said)

5 (You are Subhân! No ‘ilm have we save that which You have taught us. Verily, You alone are ‘Alîm, Hakîm.)

6 (O Âdam, convey unto them the names of these [things]. )

7 (Did I not say unto you: Verily, I alone know the ghayb of the samâwât and the earth, and know all that you bring into the open and all that you would conceal?)

8 This ananiyyah is not of the sort in the nafs of man. There are statements with regards to the malâikah as follows:

“Exalted states -which prevent descend to the triviality- like honour, self-respect, dignity and solemnity arise as a consequence of blending these elevated morals and qualities. Just as the malâikah do not permit shaytans to mix with them....” Signs of Miraculousness-Âyah 23-24/About the Nubuwwah/The Third Matter/Fourthly

“The silence and tranquillity of the Samâ, and their order and regularity, and vastness and luminosity show that the inhabitants of it are not like those of the earth; rather, all its people are obedient. They do whatever they are commanded. There is no cause which demands to offer trouble and dispute.  Because the country is vast, their fitrah is pure, they are innocent and their ranks are fixed.” The Fifteenth Word-3th Step

9 (khalîfatan)

10 (And He taught Âdam all the names)

11 Abu Bakr (ra)

12 (The specified ten Sahâbah who were promised Jannah)

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