In the name of God. First word in opening chapter of the Quran. Also refers to formula used by Muslims to dedicate written works, “Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim” (“In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate”). Generally also the first phrase taught in Quran recitation and in Quranic schools. Often used to open speeches. Use is shorthand for the full opening chapter of the Quran. Sometimes followed by phrases praising God and wishing blessings upon Muhammad and his family.