Fascinating Details about the Basmalah

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Relating the Basmalah to Allah’s Name

The name Allah in Arabic is written using 3 unique letters to form a 4-letter name. This pair of numbers — 3,4 — can be found reflected throughout the Quran in various ways. In the Basmalah it can be found in its verbal structure: 3 names of Allah in a 4-word statement. It can also be found specifically in the name Al-Raheem which is mentioned 34 times as it exactly appears in the Basmalah as a name, and 3⁴ times if one counts the adjective raheem

From 3,4, we can also derive the numerical perimeters of the Basmalah: 3+4=7, the number of letters in the first 2 words of the Basmalah, and 3×4=12, giving us the number of letters in the last 2 words of the Basmalah. These two resulting numbers, 7 and 12, are significant Quranic numbers, which added together result in the third significant Quranic number, 19. This then is an “apex” number, expressed in how the Quran introduces it: “Over it is 19.” The “it” was referring to hell using the word saqar. But as a separate indefinite phrase, this expression is open to wider interpretation, as are other such expressions in the Quran. Below I have found another correlation between the Basmalah and the Quranic numbers 19, 7, and 3 that have bearing on its meaning and centrality to Quranic architecture. 

Finding Another 19 in the Basmalah

Because of the history associated with the study of the 4 words and 19 letters of the Bismalah — and 4+19=23 which is the revelation period of the Quran as well as the basic number of chromosomes defining the human genome —, I was interested in seeing if there was a formulation that also involved the number 19, after the original “Code 19” formulation by Dr. Rashad Khalifa was proven wrong, where he claimed each word in the Basmalah appeared in the Quran in a frequency that was divisible by 19. To make that formulation work, he abrogated the last two ayat from Surat Al-Tawba 9, which of course defeated his original purpose, which was to prove the Quran had never been changed — by changing it. He had discovered other 19 connections and frequencies in the Quran, however, that were proven valid. 

Thus below is a different formulation: adding the totals for each word’s frequency in the Quran, using a more consistent set of perimeters, which would be the exact spelling of all words in the Bismalah and finding the word-counts for those exact elements. However, this poses a problem for the name Allah, because the nature of the first letter aleph/alif is changeable according to specific usage, so it would be more consistent in that case to use the now-universally accepted count 2699 formulated by Dr. Abdeldaem Al-Kaheel who has extensively studied this issue. 

Since the name Allah is the overarching name in the Bismalah, certainly the first, it is reasonable to use this count despite the variant spelling while using only the exact spellings for the other words, where the name Al-Raheem is categorically different – a name – from raheem – an adjective – and where the specific spelling of bism using 3 letters has a significant linguistic and usage history making this also an appropriate choice. 

The Four Basmalah Words & their Frequencies in Quran

Below are the frequencies of the words (numbers of mentions) in the Bismalah including each possible formulation for the word Al-Raheem for reference, indicating the counts I chose to actually use as to their frequencies in bold:

  1. Bism – 3 (as it appears exactly بسم); this is a very specific usage where the prepositional letter “ba” (like “b”) connects to the root ism which means “name” – it is used this way as an invocation hence other mentions of “name” are irrelevant.
  2. Allah – 2699 (includes all versions), the universally accepted name-count. Because variations on this name, and the nature of aleph as a changeable letter, are related only to grammatical context and not to meaning (as with ba), I use this count. 
  3. AlRahman – 57 – الرحمن  no variant forms. 
  4. AlRaheem – 115 both adjective as it appears رحيم and the name الرحيم — but here the number of the name alone, 34, shares a 3,4 reference to the number of total mentions of raheem the adjective, 81 or 3⁴ showing a fascinating connection that seems to validate maintaining the aya 9:28 where the reference to the prophet occurs, both acknowledging his purpose as being a “mercy” or “merciful”/raheem (21:107) to “all the worlds.”
  5. Al-Raheem – 114 both adjective as it appears in reference to Allah and name – this is remarkable because this doesn’t include the use of Al-Raheem in the unnumbered Basmalahs, only in ayat that are numbered, yet it is equivalent to the number of surahs and also to the number of Basmalah’s including both the unnumbered ones. This speaks to the number of adjectives, one of which refers to Prophet Mohammad per above. 
  6. Al-Raheem الرحيم – 34 as a name only, which is exactly as it appears in the Basmalah. 

The Results of Adding the Frequencies

So my idea is to add these counts to see the result, then see if it is prime, a multiple of 7 (per Dr. Kaheel) or 19 (per Dr. Khalifa), or some entirely different factorization. I was surprised to find the result, 2793, to be a multiple of (other than itself and one) 3, 7 squared, and 19: in other words, 3+2699+57+34 = 2793 = 3•7²•19 (prime factorization). The result is a multiple of the significant Quranic numbers 3, 7, and 19. All 3 numbers are mentioned in the Quran: 3 is mentioned 21 times (3•7), 7 is mentioned 27 times as a word meaning “7” or “70,” and one more time as the identical word but pronounced to mean “lion” or “wild animal” which is like a “wild card” that if added to the 27 times would give us 28 (4•7), and 19 is mentioned once in 74:30. 

Here we have both significant Quranic numbers 7 and 19 as factors, and the third factor, 3, is also highly significant but hasn’t received sufficient study, probably because it is a lower number and therefore is a factor in more numbers, lowering the bar for miracles. Although certain scholars have found unique references to “3” as well. 

2793 has 12 divisors, the total number of letters in the names Al-Rahman Al-Raheem, each of which, individually, has 6 letters. The 12 divisors are: 1, 3, 7, 19, 21, 49, 57, 133, 147, 399, 931, and 2793. Also, 12 is the total number of letters in the simplest Divine Shahada, La ilaha illa Allah, which uses only the 3 unique letters in Allah’s name to form its 12-letter statement. 

Finally, we can relate all this back to our original premise of the relationship between Allah’s name and the Basmalah through the pair 3,4. The number we obtained, 2793, has 3 unique factors, total factors 4, just as the name Allah has 3 unique letters and 4 total letters, whose sum is 7. 

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