**Question:**

*aslamalaykum *shaykh hisham

what is the meaning behind the numbers 786, some people say these numbers represent *Bismillaharahmanaraheem*

**Answer:**

*wa `alaykum salam,*

The value 786 represents *Bismillahi ‘r-Rahmani ‘r-Raheem* because it is the sum of the *abjad *values of the letters composing this holy phrase. The *abjad *numerals are a decimal numeral system in which the letters of the Arabic alphabet are assigned numerical values. These values are ancient and are used in numerology.

Value | Letter | Name | Trans- literation |
---|---|---|---|

1 | ا | ʾalif | ʾ / ā |

2 | ب | bāʾ | b |

3 | ج | jīm | j |

4 | د | dāl | d |

5 | ﻫ | hāʾ | h |

6 | و | wāw | w / ū |

7 | ز | zayn / zāy | z |

8 | ح | ḥāʾ | ḥ |

9 | ط | ṭāʾ | ṭ |

Value | Letter | Name | Trans- literation |
---|---|---|---|

10 | ى | yāʾ | y / ī |

20 | ك | kāf | k |

30 | ل | lām | l |

40 | م | mīm | m |

50 | ن | nūn | n |

60 | س | sīn | s |

70 | ع | ʿayn | ʿ |

80 | ف | fāʾ | f |

90 | ص | ṣād | ṣ |

Value | Letter | Name | Trans- literation |
---|---|---|---|

100 | ق | qāf | q |

200 | ر | rāʾ | r |

300 | ش | šīn | š |

400 | ت | tāʾ | t |

500 | ث | ṯāʾ | ṯ |

600 | خ | ḫāʾ | ḫ |

700 | ذ | ḏāl | ḏ |

800 | ض | ḍād | ḍ |

900 | ظ | ẓāʾ | ẓ |

1000 | غ | ġayn | ġ |

Some may say this knowledge does not exist in Islam. We therefore refer them to the following hadith:

The Jews of Medina went to the Prophet (s) and said, “Your Quran is initialed with *alif lam mim*, and these initials determine the lifespan of your religion. Since ‘*alif*‘ is 1, ‘*lam*‘ is 30, and ‘*mim*‘ is 40, this means that your religion will survive only 71 years.” Sayyidina Muhammad said, “We also have *alif lam mim sad*.” They said, “The ‘*alif*‘ is 1, the ‘*lam*‘ is 30, the ‘*mim*‘ is 40, and the ‘*sad*‘ is 90. This adds up to 161. Do you have anything else?” The Prophet said, “Yes, *alif lam mim ra*.” They said, “This is longer and heavier; the ‘*alif*‘ is 1, the ‘*lam*‘ is 30, ‘*mim*‘ is 40, and ‘*ra*‘ is 200, making the total 271.” They finally gave up, saying, “We do not know how many of these initials he was given!” (Al-Suyuti’s Itqan)

*Bismillahi ‘r-Rahmani ‘r-Raheem *has a numeric value of 786 from a letter-by-letter sum: of 2+60+40+1+30+30+5+1+30+200+8+40+50+1+30+200+8+10+40.

Taher Siddiqui