20 Jamadi ul Thani
Zahra (radiant), Zakiyya (pure, chaste), Radhiyya (satisfied, content), Mardhiyyah (commendable, pleasing), Siddiqa (honest), Tahera (pure, chaste), Batul, Muhaddisa, Umme Abeeha (mother of her father), Ummul Aimma (mother of the 11 Imams)
|Death||14 Jamadi ul Awwal 11 AH (according to most traditions)|
Ibn ˋAbbas narrates from the Prophet (S) that he stated:
“My daughter Fatima is the foremost of all the women of the world, past and future. She is a portion of me, the light of my eyes, the fruit of my heart and a spirit that resides in my body… Be witness that that I have granted her followers amnesty from the fire of hell.” 1
According to Shaykh al-Kulayni, Fatima Zahra was born 5 years after the appointment of the Prophet to his mission (bi’that)2. Shaykh al-Mufid places her birth at 2 years after the bi’that3, and Shaykh al-Tusi4 has mentioned both dates. Accordingly, she lived for 8 or 11 years in Makka before she migrated to Madina, and according to Ya’qubi, two months after the hijra5, and according to Mas‟udi, in the second year of hijra, the Prophet married her to Ali b. Abu Talib.6
Sunni scholars usually mention that she was born 5 years before the bi‟that, in the year that the Quraysh rebuilt the Ka‟ba. Some of them, like Hakim Nishaburi, have also mentioned that she was born a year after the bi‟that, when the Prophet was 41 years old.7
As reported by Abu Jaˋfar Qummi, her names include: Fatima, Batul, Hassaan, Hurrah, Sayyidah, ˋAdhra, Zahra, Hawra’, Mubarakah, Tahirah, Zakiyyah, Radhiyah, Mardhiyyah, Muhaddithah, Maryam al-Kubra, Siddiqah-ye Kubra8; and in the heavens she is called Nuriyyah and Haniyyah.9 It should be noted however, that by her names, we generally mean her titles and qualities. She was not necessarily called by all these names; some of them were her titles, while others reveal her qualities, and this is why they are more or fewer found in different traditions.
Fatima (A) was a radiant lady who resembled her father, the messenger of God, in her features, gait and manner. The mother of Anas bin Malik narrates that, “Her features were as radiant as the full moon or like the sun that parts the clouds and shines forth.”
It is narrated from the mother of the believers, Umm Salma, that: Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet (S), resembled him most closely in features and manner.10
Jabir bin ˋAbdallah Ansari used to say: Whenever we saw Fatima’s manner of walking, we were reminded of the manner of walking of the Prophet (S).11
It has also been reported from Ayisha: Whenever she came into his presence, the Prophet (S) would kiss her and make her sit in his own place.12
And she also said: I have not seen anyone resemble the Prophet (S) in his speech and conversation more than Fatima.13
Ibn ˋAbbas narrates from Umm Salma that: “The Messenger of God married me and entrusted me with the upbringing and training of his daughter. But, I swear by God that I found her more courteous than me and more knowledgeable in every affair.”14
It is narrated from Zubayr that: “Whenever Fatima daughter of the Prophet (S) was mentioned in the presence of ˋAyisha, she would say, “I never met anyone more truthful than her except her father.”15
It has also been narrated by Fatima that: “When the verse 24/63 was revealed, I was embarrassed to call the Prophet (S), “father”, so I used to address him as, “O Messenger of God”, until he said to me, “O daughter, this verse has not been revealed for you and your family. You and I are as one. This verse was revealed for the faithless and haughty. Call me “father”, for I prefer it and God is more pleased with that.”16
Anas bin Malik narrates: “The Messenger of God (S) asked us, “What is most preferable for women?” We did not know what to reply, so ˋAli went to Fatima and asked her this question.
Fatima (A) said, “Why did you not answer that the it is most preferable for them that they do not see men and men do not see them.” ˋAli returned and related this reply to the Prophet (S). The Prophet (S) asked, “Who has taught you this?” He said, “Fatima.” The Prophet (S) stated, “She is a portion of me.”17
It has also been narrated that: “A blind man came to Fatima (A), daughter of the Messenger of God (S), and Fatima veiled herself from him. The Prophet (S) asked he why she had veiled herself from him, when he cannot see you. She replied, “O Messenger of God, he does not see me, but I can see him and (furthermore) he can smell fragrances.” The Prophet (S) stated, “I bear witness that you are a portion of me.”18
And finally, the Commander of the faithful (A), states about his married life, albeit brief, with Fatima (A): “I swear by God, until the day she departed this world, Fatima (A) never angered me, nor disobeyed me. Whenever I gazed at her, all sorrow and grief would leave my heart.”19
Her Position on the Day of Judgement
“The Prophet (S) stated, “On the day of judgement, a caller from the depths of the throne (ˋarsh) will call out, “O assembly of men, bow your heads and lower your eyes, until Fatima (A) daughter of the Prophet (S) passes across the path (sirat).” Then, accompanied by 70,000 heavenly maidens (huri), she will pass across the sirat as rapidly as lightning.”20
It has also been reported in many narrations that Fatima Zahra (A) will provide intercession for the friends of the progeny of Muhammad (S). Shaykh al-Saduq narrates from Ibn al-ˋAbbas who quoted the Prophet (S) as saying:
“It is as if I see that the day of judgement has come, and I can see my daughter F¡§ima seated on a radiant mount. She is surrounded on all four sides by 70,000 angels, while she leads the believing women of my community (ummah) into paradise. Every woman who would pray five times a day, fast in the month of Ramadhan, go for pilgrimage to the house of God, pay alms out of her wealth, and obey her husband will enter paradise by the intercession of my daughter, Fatima.
In addition to this, it has been reported in many narrations that before she enters heaven, Fatima (A) will claim justice from the killers of Husain (A). Shaykh al-Saduq reports from Amir al-Mu’mineen (A) that:
“The Prophet (S) said, “My daughter Fatima will come with a group of women. Then she will be told, “Enter the heaven.” She will say, “I will not enter until I know what was done to my son after me.” Then it will be said, “Look into the middle of the ranks of people.” When she will look, she will see Husain (A) standing, with no head on his body. She will give out a cry, which will be echoed by us, and all the angels. Then God’s wrath will be aroused and he will command a fire by the name of Hayhab, (which has been kindled for 100 years till it has turned black, and in which no joy is found and no sorrow is alleviated) to engulf the killers of Husain.21
- Bihar al-anwar, vol. 43, p. 172.
- Shaykh al-Kulayni; ‘Usul al-Kafi, 2/355.
- Iqbal al-A’mal, p. 623.
- Misbah al-Mutahajjid, p. 554.
- Shaykh ‘Azizallah Atardi; Musnad Fatima Zahra, hereafter called Musnad, quoting from al-Tarikh of Ya’qubi.
- Musnad, p. 219 quoting from Muruj al-Dhahab.
- Musnad, p. 14, quoting from Mustadrak al-Sahihain.
- Hassaan means devout and chaste; Hurrah means a free woman; Sayyidah means a leader of other women; ˋAdhra means pure; Radhiyah means a women who has reached the state of contentment; Mardhiyyah means a women who God is pleased with; Haniyah means a women who is abundantly kind-hearted and forgiving.
- Musnad; p 28, quoting from Manaqib of ibn Shahr al-Ashub.
- Musnad; p 30, tradition 31, quoting from Kashf al-Ghamma of Arbali.
- Musnad; p 30, tradition 29, quoting from Kashf al-Ghamma of Arbali.
- Musnad; p 32, tradition 34, quoting from Sunan Tirmidhi.
- Musnad; p 33, tradition 35, quoting from Mustadrak al-Sahihayn of Hakim Nishaburi.
- Musnad; p 14, tradition 1, quoting from Dalail al-Imama of Abu Jafar Tabarr.
- Musnad; p 34, tradition 37, quoting from Mustadrak al-Sahihain.
- Musnad; p 529, tradition 4, quoting from al-Manaqib of Ibn Maghazali.
- Musnad; p 336, tradition 9, narrated by Hafiz abu Naim in Hilyatu’l awliya’.
- Musnad; p 336, tradition 10, quoting from al-Manaqib of Ibn Maghazali.
- Bihar al-anwar, vol. 43, p. 134.
- Musnad; p 310, tradition 9, quoting from Dalil al-Imamah of Tabari
- Musnad; p 147, tradition 7, quoting from Iqab al-Amaal.
Article contribution by Sheikh Abbas Jaffer