4. Muslim World: Upper Asia and Indian Subcontinent

China and Upper Asia

Islam reached this farthest, most remote areas of this region by way of the Silk Road. The Eastern part of China, and countries like Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhastan, Afghanistan, Chechnya; these are all Muslim lands. Many of them used to be under the control and influence of Russia, so many of them speak Russian in addition to their traditional language.

But this region that Ibn al Battuta called Asia al- Kubraa, has a long tradition of learning Arabic language particularly for the purpose of understanding the Quran and the religion of Islam. Imam al Bukhari and Imam Muslim, who are the major collectors of Hadith were from this region of Upper Asia. Uzbekistan and northern Iran.

Throughout the history of Islamkomplek-makam-saad-bin-abi-waqqash in China, Chinese Muslims have influenced the course of Chinese history. According to China Muslims’ traditional legendary accounts, Islam was first brought to China by an embassy led by Sa’d ibn abi Waqqas that was sent by Uthman, the third Caliph.  Emperor Gaozong, the Tang emperor who received the envoy then ordered the construction of the Memorial mosque in Canton, the first mosque in the country, in memory of Muhammad.


The Indian subcontinent consists of 3 countries, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh

With a huge population of 1.3 billion, India is officially a Hindu country with about 170 million Muslims.  For centuries Hindus and Muslims lived together sometimes in peace and other times in bitter conflict.

Trade relations have existed between Arabia and the Indian subcontinent since ancient times. Even in the pre-Islamic era, Arab traders used to visit the Konkan-Gujarat coast and Malabar region, which linked them with the ports of Southeast Asia

Arab merchants and traders became the carriers of the religion of Islam, and they propagated it wherever they went.


Urdu, the official language of Pakistan, with over 100 million speakers, contains many Arabic words like other languages throughout the Muslim world.

Urdu also uses Arabic letters. There is a Pakistani news station I watch from time to time, which subtitles are written at the bottom of the screen. I can read a good portion of the script which is so much like Arabic, but I can only understand bits and pieces.

Arabic words found in Urdu language:

fazal [urdu], fadal [arabic] – Divine favor/ grace
rehmat, rehmah – mercy
barakat, barakah – prosperity
zaroorat, daroorah – necessity
hajat, hajah – need
‘izzat, ‘izzah – respect/ honor
‘uzar – excuse
islah – correction
ghalat – wrong
khata – mistake
insaan: A n.m. man/human being/mankind
auqaat: A n.m. times (plu. of waqt)
auqaat: A n.f. status/position
awwaal: A adj. first/excellent/best
aulaad: A n.f. children (plu. of walad)
imaan: A n.m. belief/faith/creed/conscience
saheeh – correct
manzil – destination/ residence
du’a – supplication
ayyam – days
khiffat – light weighted/ fade
sanad – record
Read more at http://www.pakpassion.net/ppforum/showthread.php?177399-Arabic-words-used-in-Urdu-Hindi-amp-Punjabi&s=495e54609bc8ee5506c62437a3118a9b#V4GxRrkHgzxZcscJ.99

Quran in the Indian Subcontinent

BK4573-500x500Qaidah Nooraniya

Nur Muhammad al-Haqqaani of the Punjab, made a great contribution to Quran learning by authoring the book al-Qaidah aNooraniya. This book has spread all over the Gulf countries; Saudi Arabia and the surrounding countries and even spread to the West.



Published by

Us-tatha Nadiya Johnson

I help put Arabic language on the tongues of Muslim families in the West. I provide learning materials, curriculum and consulting for Homeschoolers, Islamic schools and Weekend Learning Programs.

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