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Short description: Arabic expression meaning "if God wills" or "God willing"

In sha'Allah (/ɪnˈʃælə/; Arabic: إِنْ شَاءَ ٱللَّٰهُ, ʾIn shāʾ Allāh Arabic pronunciation: [ʔin ʃaː.ʔa‿ɫ.ɫaːh]), also spelled In shaa Allah and Inshallah is an Arabic language expression meaning "if God wills" or "God willing".[1] it was mentioned in the Quran [Quran 37:102] which required the use of it when speaking on future events. [Quran 18:23-24][2] The phrase is commonly used by Muslims, Arab Christians and Arabic-speakers of other religions to refer to events that one hopes will happen in the future.[3][4] It may or may not express the belief that nothing happens unless God wills it and that His will supersedes all human will.[3] The phrase can take on an ironic context, implying that something will never happen and is left to God's hands, or can be used as a gentle way of declining invitations.[5]

Colloquially, and depending on the context, the word could mean yes, no, or maybe.

Other languages


In Adyghe, the terms "тхьэм ыIомэ, thəm yı'omə" and "иншаллахь, inshallah" are widely used by Circassians, with the meaning "Hopefully" or "If God wills".

Asturleonese, Galician, Spanish and Portuguese

The word "oxalá" in Asturleonese, Galician (more rarely in this language "ogallá") and Portuguese. In Spanish as "ojalá". They all come from the Arabic لو شاء الله law šā’ l-lāh[6] [7] (using a different word for "if"), from the time of Muslim presence and rule on the Iberian Peninsula. It means "we hope","I hope", "we wish","I wish".

Bulgarian, Macedonian and Serbo-Croatian

Bulgarian and Macedonian "Дай Боже/дај Боже" and Serbo-Croatian "ако Бог да, ako Bog da" are the South Slav versions of the expression, calqued from Arabic, owing to Ottoman rule over the Balkans. They are used extensively in Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, North Macedonia, and Montenegro, even sometimes used by non theists. Also widely used in Ukraine and Russia .

Cypriot Greek

In Cypriot Greek the word ίσσαλα, ishalla is used with the meaning "hopefully".[8]


In Esperanto, Dio volu means "God willing".

Indonesian and Malay

The term is used in the two languages with very similar meanings and spellings, i.e. insyaallah (Indonesian) and insya'Allah (Malay), and is used in the same manner; "God willing". It is a very common expression in both languages.


A similar expression exists in Maltese: jekk Alla jrid (if God wills it).[9] Maltese is descended from Siculo-Arabic, the Arabic dialect that developed in Sicily and later in Malta between the end of the 9th century and the end of the 12th century.


In Persian language the phrase is nearly the same, ان‌شاءالله, being pronounced formally as en shâ Allah, or colloquially as ishâllâ.


In Polish "Daj Boże" and "Jak Bóg da" are similar expressions to the South Slav versions. They mean "God, give" and "If God will give / allow".


In Tagalog, "sana" means "I hope" or "we hope". It is the synonym of the Tagalog word "nawa".


In Turkish, the word inşallah or inşaallah is used in its literal meaning, "If God wishes and grants", but is also used in an ironic context when the speaker doesn't put too much faith in something.


In Urdu, the word is used with the meaning "God willing", but almost never used in the ironic context above.


In Russian, "Дай Бог! [dai bog]" means about the same.

See also


  1. Clift, Rebecca; Helani, Fadi (June 2010). "Insha'allah: Religious invocations in Arabic topic transition". Language in Society 39 (3): 357–382. doi:10.1017/S0047404510000199. 
  2. Abdur Rashid Siddiqui (2015-12-10). Qur'anic Keywords: A Reference Guide. Kube Publishing Ltd.. ISBN 9780860376767. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 John L. Esposito, ed (2014). "Insha Allah". The Oxford Dictionary of Islam. Oxford: Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/acref/9780195125580.001.0001. ISBN 9780195125580. 
  4. Anthony Shadid (11 January 2010). "Allah – The Word". The New York Times. 
  5. Ismail, Aymann (2020-09-30). "The One-Word Mystery of the Presidential Debate That Roused Muslims (and Right-Wing Bloggers)" (in en). 
  6. Asociación de academias de la lengua española (2021). "ojalá". Real Academia Española. "Del ár. hisp. law šá lláh 'si Dios quiere'." 
  7. Dicionário Estraviz (2021). "oxalá". Dicionário Estraviz. 
  8. Γιαγκουλλής, Κωνσταντίνος (2002). Θησαυρός Κυπριακής Διαλέκτου Ερμηνευτικός και ετυμολογικός - Από το 13ο αι. μέχρι σήμερα-Κωνσταντίνος. Λευκωσία. pp. 113. ISBN 9963-555-41-1. 
  9. Azzopardi-Alexander, Marie; Borg, Albert (2013-04-15) (in en). Maltese. Routledge. ISBN 9781136855283. 

External links