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Khuda or Khoda (Persian: خدا‎) is the Persian word for "Lord" or "God". Originally, it was used in reference to Ahura Mazda (the name of God in Zoroastrianism). Other Iranian languages also use it.



The word Khuda in Nastaʿlīq script

The term derives from Middle Iranian terms xvatay, xwadag meaning "lord", "ruler", "master", appearing in written form in Parthian kwdy, in Middle Persian kwdy, and in Sogdian kwdy. It is the Middle Persian reflex of older Iranian forms such as Avestan xva-dhata- "self-defined; autocrat", an epithet of Ahura Mazda. The Pashto term Xdāi (خدۍ) is either a Persian loanword or an Eastern Iranian cognate.

Prosaic usage is found for example in the Sassanid title katak-xvatay to denote the head of a clan or extended household or in the title of the 6th century Khwaday-Namag "Book of Lords", from which the tales of Kayanian dynasty as found in the Shahnameh derive.


Semi-religious usage appears, for example, in the epithet zaman-i derang xvatay "time of the long dominion", as found in the Menog-i Khrad. The fourth and eighty-sixth entry of the Pazend prayer titled 101 Names of God, Harvesp-Khoda "Lord of All" and Khudawand "Lord of the Universe", respectively, are compounds involving Khuda.[1] Application of khuda as "the Lord" (Ahura Mazda) is represented in the first entry in the medieval Frahang-i Pahlavig.

Islamic usageEdit

In Islamic times, the term came to be used for God in Islam, paralleling the Arabic name of God Al-Malik "Owner, King, Lord, Master".

The phrase Khuda Hafiz (meaning May God be your Guardian) is a parting phrase commonly used in Persian, Kurdish, Bengali, Urdu and Pashto, as well as in Hindustani and Punjabi among South Asian Muslims.

It also exists as a loanword, used for God in Turkish (Hüdâ),[2] and by Muslims in Bengali, Punjabi and Urdu.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Edalji Kersâspji Antiâ, Pazend texts, Bombay 1909, pp. 335–337.[1]
  2. ^ Zorlu, Tuncay (2008). Innovation and Empire in Turkey: Sultan Selim III and the Modernisation of the Ottoman Navy. I.B.Tauris. p. 116. ISBN 978-0857713599.