Question: What are the different Arabic words for impurity?
Thank you for your important question.
The three terms you are asking about are all connecting linguistically.
- Najisun (نَجِسٌ): a derived noun (ism mushtaq) which means “impure”. ex. الماءُ نَجِسٌ – the water is impure (i.e. containing something which is considered filthy in Islam like alcohol)
- Najasun (نَجَسٌ) & Najasatun (نَجاسَةٌ): they are both verbal nouns (masdar) which mean impurity or uncleanliness. ex. يَدْرُسُ زَيْدٌ باب النَّجاسة – Zaid is studying the chapter on “impurity”.
The verb in Arabic for mixing would be: اِخْتَلَطَ and its verbal noun form would be اخْتِلاط.
ex. اخْتَلَطَ الماءُ بالخَمر – the water mixed with the alcohol.
The verb in Arabic for polluting or contamination would be either:
- تَلَوَّثَ (ta-lawwa-tha)
- أنْجَسَ (an-ja-sa)
ex. تَلَوَّثَ الخَمْرُ الماءَ – the alcohol contaminated the water.
[Fayyumi, al-Misbah al-Muneer]
And Allah alone knows best.
[Ustadh] Omar Popal
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani