Names of Shirk or Kufr

Shortened Question:

Name of Shirk or Kufr


Asalamu alaykum

I have a question. I live in a non Muslim country and some of the people who lives here, have names containing shirk or kufr in them.

This is a thing that has bugged me for a long time. I often stop speaking to people or whenever I call for them it could be like “hey you” even though I have known them for a long time. When I think of it, something tells me why should I get punished because I can’t change their names? At the same time something in me says, why should you keep contact or even start speaking to people with names containing shirk or kufr?

Is it possible that you could pronounce their names, but not mean it in the sense that they do? All these things are very hard for me.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Your resentment towards names having meanings of kufr and shirk is truly an expression of your Ieman.

As Muslims Ieman is dear to us and we are completely averse to kufr and shirk. We live, we breathe and we die with Tawheed and the greatness of Allah Subhana wa Ta’ala.

The challenge of our Ieman and Tawheed is in changing kufr to Ieman and not merely just being averse to kufr and shirk. Consequently, we have to interact with people of kufr and impact upon them with our Ieman, character and conduct.

There are many non-Muslims with beautiful qualities which could be tapped to give them dawah and expose them to Islam.

Their non-Muslim names should not prevent us from interacting with them and using the opportunity to give them dawah.

It is natural for the inhabitants of non Muslims countries to have non-Islamic names. Their names are what their parents have chosen for them.

It is more polite to refer to these people by their names rather than as “hey you” when you are aware of their names. This will help to make them more susceptible towards Muslims and Islam. Someone once said, “the sweetest name to a person is his own name.

Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam and the Sahabah Radiallahu Anhum interacted with kuffar having Un-Islamic names. Some of these kuffars accepted Islam and changed their names of kufr and shirk to Islamic names.


And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Mufti Saeed Ahmed Golaub

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