SWT? SAWS? PBUH? 786? (OK?)
Can Muslims use shortcuts like: PBUH, SWT, SAWS, ASWTA in emails? What about 786?
How important is it to say, "Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam" after the name of our Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him)?
Actually, there is a Hadith, wherein the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him), said, "Ameen" and when his companions asked him what he meant by just saying "Ameen", he replied, "The angel Gabriel (Jibril), peace be upon him, said to me, "There is a curse of Allah upon the one who hears your name and does not say, "Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam " (Peace and blessings be upon him), and I said, 'Ameen'..."
We see it is very important to pronounce these words upon saying the name of our Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him). There is also rewards for saying this and especially making Du’a for him (Peace and blessings be upon him), as much as you can on many occasions, such as Fridays.
But is it mandatory to say it each and every time we here the name of our Prophet Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him)?
No. But for sure, I don't want to take a chance and for sure, I need all the rewards I can get, insha’Allah.
Does this have to be in Arabic?
According to scholars, it is better to say, "Muhammad, Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam" and then you can say, " Peace and blessings be upon him" to take the most reward and avoid falling into the category of those who are mentioned by the angel Jibril to be cursed.
However, if someone only translates it as, "Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him)" this should be no problem and could still have rewards with Allah.
But just typing four letters PBUH (for Peace Be Upon Him), certainly does not show much respect or care for on the part of the one who is too lazy or uneducated to know the words.
Some knowledgeable Muslims have made efforts to always spell it out and make sure anyone whether Muslim or non-Muslim, knew what we were saying and what we mean, and how important it is for us to say this.
Consider this, someone who is reading a forwarded copy of an email comes across this statement, "The Prophet PBUH, said..." Now they are going to think there is some Prophet named PBUH and try to pronounce it - "Pebooh" or "PaBU".
And about saying "SAWS" after the Prophet's name? Or when referring to him indirectly?
Actually, there is no such thing in Arabic as "SAWS".
Imagine someone writes, "When the Prophet (SAWS) said...."
Now someone could think there is a Prophet named "saws".
This is a very sad innovation for the lazy, internet Muslims who think it is OK to do this. I do not like it, but it is an abbreviation of "Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Salam".
Also, when Muslims are talking about Allah, The Exalted, The Majestic and Sublime and they just type, "ASWT".
This is the transliteration of "Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala" as "ASWT". Some people will type the word "Allah" and then put "SWT" as though this is better.
But the non-Muslim thinks you are talking about some new "god" named "Allah swat". A’uthubillah.
The fact is, all of this is transliteration using the English letters to represent the Arabic, and then taking the first letter to represent the word that the Muslim is too lazy to type or he doesn't know how to spell.
Now look at the long email names Muslims use, for example: mohamed.bin_jubairy786@brothersofpeace_islamicinternational.co.uk
We all know someone has to memorize and type each and every one of those 65 letters & characters exactly right, every time. And this is also true of any other email they have to send to. You cannot miss a single letter or character, right?
Yet, when it comes to get the reward for saying "Salams" on the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him), or for exalting the Greatness of Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala), seems Muslims don't want the rewards, and worse, do not even take the time to find out if this is even acceptable in Islam.
What is worse, is how many of our would-be scholars of today, do exactly the same thing, or even worse because they do not really know English and think it is OK to do this practice.
For me - I would not like to do it, I don't like to read it and I don't like to publish it. But so many people have done it in so many places, it seems hardly worth it, when there are so many others areas we are worrying about right now.
And what about "786"? What is this?
The numbers 7-8-6 as we see them being used today, come from Pakistan mostly but other Muslims have begun to use this term as well. They claim it represents the "Bismillah Ar-Rahman Ar-Rahim". However, there is no real evidence for this from Islam or the Arabic.
It could be something in Urdu, but even that was not done by earlier scholars. In fact, some of the real scholars from these areas have told us, Muslims should not do these things.
Bottom line - If you are too tired or busy to type out the words, maybe you should disconnect from the Internet and come back when you have more time. At least enough time to type out your correct email address and the expressions related to our "God" (Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala) Exalted and Majestic is He, and His Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) (Peace and blessings be upon him).
Sheikh Yusuf Estes