Having read many chess books (and written written one) I have tried to find a general consensus for the meaning of "tabiya/tabiyah/tabia."
After due consideration I think that, as Emanuel Lasker pointed out - chess is a fight. I believe, therefore, that tabiyas are akin to battle positions. These can be either standard in nature, as in positions that are the result of regularly visited opening sequences or may be personal, whereby a player attempts to reach his own preferential position(s)or tabiya(s).
Often such tabiyas are seminal and full of tactical/positional nuances as in the Sicilian Dragon, for example.
I would also like to suggest that there exist "ideal" tabiyas such as optimum positions to aim for in, say, pawn endings (as well as in openings).
Thus, in sum, there may be Standard, Personal and/or Ideal tabiyas - and these are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
I value your reply at my email address below or on this site.
Paul Wiseman (aka Fangoon aka The Count of Ten).