Answered by Muftī Khālid Saifullāh Al-Raḥmānī
Formatted to English by Yūsuf Badāt
I have come across conflicting suggestions around the religious significance of the number “786”. Does the number “786” hold any significance from an islamic standpoint, or does it not mean anything? If we come across items (sheets of paper, articles, signs etc) that have 786 printed on them, should it be treated differently or can it be disregarded (or thrown away)?
In the Name of God, Most Merciful, Most Kind
Jazāk Allāh Khayr/ Thank you for contacting Mathābah with your question.
Deriving or having numbers represent letters or Islamic prayers, has no Islamic basis. This is a pre-islamic practice. Shaykh Raḥmat Allāh Kirānwī (may God’s mercy be with him) has mentioned in his book, Izhār Al-Ḥaq, that it is a common custom amongst some Jewish communities to use symbolism, numerology and numbers to represent letters. Numbers and symbols cannot represent “bismillah” etc. from an Islamic point of view. If there was any basis to this, the Companions and pious predecessors would have utilized it.
That being said, 786 has no basis in Islam nor can it represent any Islamic text such as bismillāh. There is no reference to this in Islamic source texts. Therefore documents that bear the number 786 hold no religious status. To associate any religious veneration to these number formations is disbelief. – (See: Kitāb Al-Fatāwā Li-Al-Raḥmānī)
“Whoever introduces into this religion of ours anything which does not belong to it, is rejected.” – (Ṣaḥīḥ Bukhārī)
And Allāh Knows Best