In several verses of the Noble Qur`an, Allāh (SwT) has mentioned the creation and stages of transformation of the child. It is by observing this miracle that one inevitably desires to thank and revere Him, the best of Creators.
In Surat al-Mu`minūn, verses 12-14, He states:
وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الإِِنْسَانَ مِنْ سُلاَلَةٍ مِّــنْ طِــينٍ ثُمَّ جَعَلْنَاهُ نُطْفَةً فِي قَرَارٍ مَّكِينٍ ثُمَّ خَلَقْنَا النُّطْفَةَ عَلَقَةً فَخَلَقْنَا الْعَلَقَةَ مُضْغَةً فَخَلَقْنَا الْمُضْغَةَ عِظَامًا فَكَسَوْنَا الْعِظَامَ لَحْماً ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَاهُ خَلْقًا آخَرَ فَتَبَارَكَ اللٌّهُ أَحْسَنُ الْخَالِقِينَ
“Certainly We created the human being from an extract of clay. Then We made him a drop of (seminal) fluid (lodged) in a secure abode. Then We created the drop of fluid as a clinging mass. Then We created the clinging mass as a fleshy tissue. Then We created the fleshy tissue as bones. Them We clothed the bones with flesh. Then We produced him as (yet) another creature. So blessed is Allāh (SwT), the best of creators!”
In the verses above, Allāh (SwT) mentions 7 stages of creation:
Stage 1: The human being initially starts off as clay; in other words, the inorganic constituents of the earth are absorbed into living matter by way of food.
Stage 2: Living matter reproduces itself by means of sperm; thus the human is then made into a seed (the seminal fluid), and placed in a firm resting place (the ovum of a mother).
Stage 3: The first change in the fertilised ovum is the conversion into a sort of clot of thickly congealed blood, or clinging mass.
Stage 4: The zygote cells grow by segmentation; then the mass gradually assumes shape in its growth as a foetus (a lump of fleshy tissue).
Stage 5: From this develops bones.
Stage 6: Flesh now grows on the bones, as do organs and a nervous system.
Stage 7: So far the development of an infant human is like that of an animal. However, a major step is now taken and the foetus becomes a complete human. This is the breathing of Allāh (SwT)’s spirit into him. (This may not be at a specific time; rather it may be parallel to that of physical growth.)
On the subject of the creation of the foetus, it is narrated from the Prophet (S): “The seed in the womb of the mother (takes) 40 days to become a clot, then after 40 days it becomes a lump of flesh (foetus); when the child is 4 months old, by the command of Allāh (SwT), 2 Angels give the foetus a spirit (rūĥ) and specify the sustenance (Rizq), period of living, deeds (A°māl), prosperity and adversity of the child.”1
It is perhaps for this reason that it has been suggested that especially after the 40th day of intercourse, one should be extra careful when preparing food. The food must be ritually clean and ĥalāl as this will have an impact on the child.2
Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) also described the process of creation as follows: “After the completion of the materials of the body, Allāh (SwT) sends two Angels who have the duty of the creation of the child, and by the permission of Allāh (SwT), they create the ears and eyes and all the inner and outer organs (limbs) of the body.”3
In Imām Husain’s (as) Du°a of °Arafāt, he refers to the process of creation and attempts to count the blessings bestowed by Allāh (SwT) in the following manner:
“You originated me by Your blessing before I was a thing remembered.
You created me from dust,
then gave me a place in the loins (of my fathers),
secure from the uncertainty of Fate and the vagaries of
the ages and the years.
I remained a traveller from loin to womb in a time
immemorial of past days
and bygone centuries.
In Your tenderness, bounty and goodness toward me You
did not send me out into the empire of the
leaders of disbelief, those who broke Your
covenant and cried lies to Your messengers.
Rather, You sent me out to that guidance which had
been foreordained for me, the way which
You made easy for me
and in which You Nurtured me.
And before that You wert kind to me through Your
and abundant blessings.
You originated my creation from a sperm-drop spilled
and madest me to dwell in a threefold gloom among flesh,
blood and skin.
You gave me not to witness my creation,
nor didst You entrust me with anything of my own affair.
Then You sent me out into the world for the guidance
that had been foredained for me, complete
Imām Zain al-°Abidīn (as) in his Du°ā after Ŝalāt al-Lail in Saĥīfah Sajjādiya also mentions this amazing period of the foetus and of breastfeeding. He thanks Allāh (SwT) and expresses his amazement at how Allāh (SwT) created such a beautiful creation from a few seeds.
You caused me to descend as mean water
from loins of narrow bones and tight passages
into a constricted womb
which You hadst covered with veils;
You turned me about from state to state
until You took me to the completion of the form
and fixed within me the bodily parts,
as You hast described in Your Book:
then a clot,
then a tissue,
then You garmented the bones with flesh,
then You produced me as another creature
as You willed.
Then, when I needed Your provision,
and could not do without the aid of Your bounty,
Thou appointed for me a nourishment
from the bounty of the food and drink
which You bestowed upon Your handmaid
in whose belly You gavest me to rest
and in the lodging of whose womb
You deposited me.
Hadst You entrusted me in those states, my Lord,
to my own force
or driven me to have recourse to my own strength,
force would have been removed from me
and strength taken far away.
So You fed me through Your bounty
with the food of the Good, the Gentle;
You hast done that for me in graciousness toward me
up to this my present point.
I do not lack Your goodness,
nor does Your benefaction keep me waiting.
Yet with all that,
my trust has not become firm enough
that I might free myself
for that which is more favoured by You.”5
In a hadith al-Qudsi, Allāh (SwT) addresses the ungrateful man and says: “Oh, Son of Adam! You have not acted justly with me! I made your weight light on your mother! After that I made the path of your deliverance from a tight and dark place smooth (and tolerable). When you placed a foot in the world outside the womb, I saw that you don’t have teeth to eat food; I placed breasts full of milk in the warm bosom of (your) mother. I made the heart of your mother merciful towards you, and the heart of your father affectionate, such that they take pains to give you food, and do not sleep until they make you sleep.
Oh, Son of Adam! All these favours were not because you asked it from me, nor that I needed you. And when the state of your physical constitution was ready, and your teeth grew, I made you enjoy (and benefit from) (different) types of foods and fruits of the summer and winter. However! Despite all this kindness, after you did not recognise me (as your Creator and Sustainer), you disobeyed me.”6
The Prophet Muĥammad (S) has said that: “Paradise is under the feet of the mother.”7
Allāh (SwT) states in the Noble Qur`an, in Surat al-Fāťir, Verse 11:
وَمَا تَحْمِلُ مِنْ أُنْـثَى وَلاَ تَضَعُ إِلاَّ بِعِلْمِهِ
“And no female conceives or delivers except with His knowledge.”
It is also narrated from the Prophet (S): “If it is decided that Allāh (SwT) will make a child be born, He will make him in whatever shape he likes.”8
This shows us that child-bearing is a direct blessing from Allāh (SwT) and one that must be shown continuous gratitude for. Indeed, the presence of a child has been likened to the fruit of a tree, which brings a man and woman closer to each other.
As for mothers, Islam has made for them a beautiful world, in which everyone must respect and revere them. Allāh (SwT) recognizes and mentions the difficulties borne by mothers:
In Surat Luqmān, Verse 14, He states:
حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ وَهْناً عَلى وَهْنٍ
“His mother carried him through weakness upon weakness.”
In Surat al-Aĥqāf, Verse 15, He states:
حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ كُرْهاً وَوَضَعَتْهُ كُرْهاً
“His mother has carried him in travail, and bore him in travail.”
Indeed, the status of mothers is even higher than fathers as demonstrated by the following traditions:
A man came to the Prophet (S) and said to him, “O Messenger of Allah, to whom should I do good?” The Prophet (S) said, “Your mother.” (So) the man said, “And then to whom should I do good?” The Prophet (S) said, “Your mother.” (Then) the man said, “And then to whome should I do good?” The Prophet (S) said, “Your mother.” (Then) the man asked, “After that, to whome should I do good?” The Prophet (S) said, “To your father.”9
It is also narrated that the Prophet (S) was asked, “Which of the parents have a higher status?” The Prophet (S) replied, “The one who for nine months kept you between her two sides (stomach), and then brought you into this world and gave you milk from her breasts.”10
There are many traditions about the signifance of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, some of which will be narrated below. However, it should be kept in mind that these go side by side with the responsibilities that should be carried out to the best of one’s abilities. These responsibilities are naturally present when one has the intention of reaching high stations of Akhlāq and nearness to Allāh (SwT) and desires to work towards this virtuous goal. (These will be discussed in more detail in the next section)
a. It is narrated from the Prophet (S): “The reward of a woman, from the time of pregnancy until birth and breastfeeding, is the same as the reward of one on the path of Allāh (SwT), and if a woman leaves this world during that time because of the hardship and pains of birth, she has the reward of a martyr (shahid).”11
b. It is narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as): “Any time a woman leaves this world because of labour pains, on the Day of Judgement, Allāh (SwT) will raise her from the grave pure and without an account (of sins), because such a woman has given her life due to the hardship and pain of labour .”12
c. It is also narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as): “Every time a woman becomes pregnant, during the whole period of pregnancy she has the status of one who fasts, one who worships during the night, and one who fights for Allāh (SwT) with her life and possessions. And when she is giving birth, Allāh (SwT) grants her so much reward that nobody knows its limit because of its greatness. And when she is giving milk to her child, for every suck of the child, Allāh (SwT) gives her the reward of freeing a slave from the children of Ismā`īl, and when the period of breastfeeding the child is finished, one of the great angels of Allāh (SwT) taps her side and says: “Start your deeds afresh, for Allāh (SwT) has forgiven all your minor sins.”13
d. At the time of the Prophet (S), a man was doing tawaf (of the Noble Ka°bah) while carrying his mother on his shoulders. When he saw the Prophet (S) , he asked, “By doing this, have I repaid the rights of my mother?” To this the Prophet (S) replied, “No, you haven’t even repaid one of her cries during the time of giving birth.”14
e. A man came to the Prophet (S) and asked, “I have an old mother who because of old age is not able to move. I carry her on my shoulder and put bites of food in her mouth and clean her. Have I repaid her rights?” To this the Prophet (S) replied, “No, because her stomach was your place, and during that entire time, she desired your life.”15
f. It is narrated from Imām Zain al-°Abidīn (as): “The right of your mother is that you know that she carried you where no one carries anyone. She gave to you of the fruit of her heart that which no one gives to anyone, and she protected you with all her organs. She did not care if she went hungry as long as you ate, if she was thirsty as long as you drank, if she was naked as long as you were clothed, if she was in the sun as long as you were in the shade. She gave up sleep for your sake. She protected you from heat and cold, all in order that you might belong to her. You will not be able to show her gratitude, unless God helps and gives you success.”16
The above traditions should give hope to pregnant women, who inevitably will face one difficulty or another during this time. At times of difficulty, one should know that Allāh (SwT) has provided women with both the capability and the desire to bear children, for as Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) narrates: “Allāh (SwT) has given every woman the patience of 10 men, and during pregnancy Allāh (SwT) grants her the ability of 10 more men.”17
Like the conception period, and even more so, the thoughts and actions of the mother have an impact on the Akhlāq, actions and faith of the unborn child, as the child is like an organ of the mother and obtains all the necessary factors of development from her.
The Prophet (S) has stated that the prosperity and adversity of a child is determined in the mother’s stomach.18 In another tradition, Imām °Alī (as) too, has said that in terms of Akhlāq, nature and religiousness, a child is made by the mother and obtains his/her disposition from her Akhlāq.19 Thus it is the responsibility of the mother that she creates the best possible environment for the first home of the child.
The constant care and attention of the mother that all thoughts and actions are in accordance with the teachings of Islam and the Ahlul Bayt (as), is necessary and highly emphasized. This is especially important because the child is not only a member of the family, but a member of the society and can be a source of blessings and benefit. For it is through this manner, that the esteemed and noble Saints and scholars have come into this world and made an impact not only in their societies, but also in the history of the world mentions the purity of two noble Prophets, Yaĥyā bin Zakariya (as) and °Isā bin Maryam (as), from the day of their birth:
وَسَلاَمٌ عَلَيْهِ يَوْمَ وُلِدَ وَيَوْمَ يَمُوتُ وَيَوْمَ يُبْعَثُ حَيًّا
“Peace be to him, the day he was born, and the day he dies, and the day he is raised alive!”20
وَالسَّــلاَمُ عَلَيَّ يَوْمَ وُلِدْتُ وَيَوْمَ أَمُوتُ وَيَوْمَ أُبْعَثُ حَيًّا
“Peace is to me the day I was born, and the day I die, and he day I am raised alive.”21
Likewise in the Ziyārat al-Wārith, we bear witness to the purity of Imām Husain (as): “I bear witness that, verily, you were a light in the sublime loins, and purified wombs; the impurities of ignorance did not (even) touch you, nor its soiled and dirty bearings could ever smear you.”
The father plays an important role in helping the mother maintain a healthy spirit and development, by supporting her and helping her in every way. By being informed and understanding about the changes the mother will undergo, as well as her physical, emotional and mental needs, he can help create the warm and loving atmosphere at home that is essential for the positive development of the child.
The following incident clearly highlights the importance of the actions of the mother and father during the period of pregnancy:
a. When °Allāmah Majlisi (the compiler of Biĥār al-Anwār) was a child, he went with his father to a mosque in Isfahan. While his father went to pray, he remained in the courtyard, playing. When his father came out, he saw that his son had poked a needle into a water skin full of water that belonged to the mosque, and all the water had spilled out.
The father was very upset and when he reached home, he narrated the incident to his wife and said that this act must be a consequence of something we did. He continued saying that however much he thought of his actions before conception, during conception, ĥalāl intake and all other possibilities, he could not think of a possible cause, and asked his wife to think on it as well.
After doing this, the wife replied that I can’t think of any thing except one incident. One day while I was pregnant with him, I went to a neighbour’s house and saw a pomegranate tree. I made a prick in one of the pomegranates and sucked a little bit of juice. It was this one small act that led to the later incident that took place with her son.22
May Allāh (SwT) grant all mothers the tawfīq (Divine opportunity) to be able to carry out their responsibilities to the best of their abilities, and thus be able to apply the following tradition of Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) to their children: “Glad is the one whose mother possesses the precious gem of chastity and pure thoughts.”23
The food of a foetus is obtained from the blood of the mother and so most of what the mother eats and drinks eventually reaches the child in one form or another.
It is narrated from Imām °Alī (as): “Allāh (SwT) has trapped the blood in the stomach of the mother, so that it becomes the sustenance of the child.”24
It is also narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as): “Whatever the mother eats, drinks or breathes during pregnancy, Allāh (SwT) also allots it to the child.”25
It is therefore again, as with conception, very important that the mother takes care with the food that she eats. About ĥarām intake and ĥarām food in particular, it is narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) that “The effects of ĥarām earnings become apparent in the offspring of a person.”26
In another tradition it is narrated from Imām al-Bāqir (as): “All sins are grave, and the gravest of them is that of which blood and meat grows on (i.e. ĥarām intake).”27
It is recommended to eat the following foods during pregnancy:
1. Breast of animal meat
a. Is very useful for pregnant women and makes the newborn child beautiful and strong.28
a. Is good for the increase (in size) of a child.
b. Increases the water around the waist, makes the child good and increases the masculinity of a male child.
c. Is a cause of beauty of the child.
d. Eating a lot is a cause of increase of wealth, and a male child.
Chicory is also good medicine for the liver.
a. It is apparent from traditions that the best food and medicine for a pregnant woman is dates.30
b. It is narrated from Imām °Alī (as): “No food is better for a pregnant woman than fresh dates.”31
c. It is narrated from the Prophet (S): “For pregnant women, especially when giving birth, the best food is dates, because Allāh (SwT) has sworn by its greatness and glory. And if women use ratb (a type of fresh dates) in these days, their newborn children, whether son or daughter, will be forbearing and patient.”32
d. It is narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as): “If one eats apple, her child will be beautiful, and if one eats squash, the memory of both the woman and child will increase, and eating ratb (a type of fresh dates) and dates strengthens the body.”33
NOTE: It has also been narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) that one should smell an apple before eating it.34
e. Dates are known as the fruits of paradise and were the fruit of choice of the Prophet (S). They have also been mentioned in the Noble Qur`an.35
Dates contain thirteen elements of vital importance, and five types of vitamins, making it a rich food. The calcium in dates is essential for firming bones, the phosphorus for forming the brain and preventing weakness of the nerves and tiredness, and the potassium for preventing wounds/sores in the stomach.36
a. Has been mentioned and sworn upon in the Qur`an.38
b. Eat it dry, as this increases the strength of sexual intercourse and prevents piles.
c. Eating it prevents colic.39
d. It is narrated from Imām al-Riďā (as) that figs remove bad smells from the mouth, make the bones firm, cause hair to grow and prevent illnesses.
e. It is not recommended for those with Diabetes Mellitus, stomach or intestine disorders, or overweight people. Overeating also causes problems for the stomach and eyes; however, eating celery neutralises these effects.40
a. It has been narrated from the Prophet (S) that one should make pregnant women eat makka ubani, for surely when the makka ubani becomes food for the child in the stomach, it will make his/her heart strong and increase his/her intellect.43
6. Olive oil
a. A pregnant woman should not forego drinking olive oil as it makes her colour white, and clears her liver as well as that of her child.44
a. Highly recommended to be eaten before breakfast on Fridays.
b. Makes the child good (righteous).
c. Very good for easing nausea, anemia, jaundice, joint aches, blood pressure and piles.46
d. Anyone who eats 1 pomegranate, their heart will be filled with Nūr (Noble light) and Satan will not whisper to them for 40 days.47
a. If eaten by both parents, it is a cause of strength and lack of stupidity, weak mindedness and foolishness in the child.
b. Feeding the child qawoot causes increase in strength, growth of the flesh, and firmness of the bones.
a. Is a cause of strength of the heart, cleanliness of the stomach, clearness of the mind and bravery and beauty of the child.49
b. Gives lustre to the heart, and cures the inner pains (with the permission of Allāh (SwT) ).50
c. It has been narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) that a pregnant woman should eat quince, so that her child is more sweet smelling and his/her colour is purer.51
d. It is narrated from Imām as-Ŝādiq (as) : “Make pregnant women eat quince, as it makes their children beautiful.”52
e. It is narrated from the Prophet (S) : “Eating quince makes the colour of the skin clear and full of freshness, and makes the child of a person beautiful and healthy as well.”53
Quince contains Vitamins B1, B2, B6 and C, magnesium and phosphorus54
a. Makes the child cheerful and good natured.55
b. It is narrated from the Prophet (S) : “No pregnant woman eats watermelon with cheese, except that her newborn child becomes beautiful and of a nice figure.”56
11. Various other things
a. Eating almonds, bran rice, vegetables, black plums, fish, lentils, cabbage, lettuce, honey, beans, grapes, peaches, olive oil, hazel-nuts, nuts and dairy products (especially milk) is also beneficial during pregnancy.57
Properties of some of the above-mentioned foods
1. Hazel-nuts: Good for anaemia and colic (although not in excess).58
2. White beans: Good for people whose work involves thinking.
3. Grapes: Fruit with the most calories. Removes weaknesses, cleans the blood and kidneys, removes acidity in the blood and provides energy.
4. Peaches: Contains iron, Vitamin B and C. Is very good for the liver and improves the colour of the face.59
5. Almonds: Softens the chest, strengthens the bladder and cures burning when urinating. Contains phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, calcium, sulphur and iron. Almond oil contains Vitamin E.60
6. Bran rice: Bran grains such as wheat, barley, millet and rice are an important source of Vitamin B. Bran rice whose outer skin (which contains the vitamin) has been removed leads to rheumatism and gout, increased hair fall or hair going white quickly. Pregnant women are recommended not to eat too much of this type of rice, and to eat it with raw onion to make up for the lack of vitamins.
7. Black plums: Black and yellow plums contain Vitamins A, B and C, potassium, sodium, magnese oxide, carbohydrate, iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. They are good for curing rheumatism, gout, clogging of arteries and food-poisoning. When eaten in the morning on an empty stomach, it is beneficial for chronic constipation.
8. Lentils: Good for anaemia and increases milk. Contains Vitamins A, B and C, phosphorus, iron and calcium. Over-eating can lead to darkness of the eyes and menstruation problems; however, eating sesame oil and cooking it with beetroot leaf can neutralise these effects.
9. Cabbage: Contains Vitamins A, B and C, and is a cure for all illnesses. Is also good for sleeplessness and heaviness of the ear (i.e. when one does not hear well). Increases the growth of the child and heals hemorrhoidal injuries.
10. Lettuce: Extract of lettuce contains iron and magnesium. In itself, the lettuce contains copper and is beneficial for the liver. The magnesium contained is beneficial for muscles, nerves and the brain. Increases resistance to infectious diseases.
11. Turnip: Contains Vitamins A, B and C, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, iodine and sulphur. Strengthens the light of the eye, and because of the Vitamin A, cures night blindness. Softens the chest and cures coughs and colds. Prevents and cures black leprosy. The sulphur along with Vitamin A prevents or reduces stones in the bladder. Brings down blood pressure and is also beneficial for strengthening the ovaries and sexual stimulation.
Because of its properties, turnips (and its syrup/jam) are recommended to pregnant and breastfeeding women for the development of the child, easy teething, firming of the bones, walking and talking quickly and resistance against illnesses.
(Syrup: Make a hole in the middle of the turnip, fill it with sugar and let it liquidise. This is a good balm for the chest and can also be fed to children.)61
NOTE: Fresh air and plenty of oxygen are vital for the development of a healthy child
For children possessing good character and make-up, mothers are recommended to do as many of the following acts as possible:
1. Always try and be in Wuďū, especially when eating food.
2. Always try and face Qibla while carrying out daily acts, especially eating and drinking.
3. Give ŝadaqah every day for the protection of the child.
4. Don’t look at the mirror at night.
5. Stay away from all types of sin, especially back-biting and lies.
6. Perform all obligatory acts and try and do as many mustaĥab acts as possible.
7. Try and be relaxed and have positive thoughts at all times, and don’t get angry.
8. Prevent any potential worrying about the child’s development or about pregnancy by obtaining all the necessary information, and most of all, by trusting Allāh (SwT) .
9. Listen to, and recite the Qur`an as much as you can, and thus help your child become Hafidh of the Qur`an from the womb.
10. Listen to lectures from scholars
11. Perform Ghusl Jumu°ah (Friday) on 40 Fridays (Please note pregnancy is usually 40 weeks. Additionally, it is narrated in tradition that one who does Ghusl Jumu°ah 40 weeks in a row, the person will not face the squeezing of the grave).
12. Pray Ŝalāt al-Layl a minimum of 40 times. If one cannot wake up before Ŝalāt al-Fajr to pray, then it is possible to pray after Ŝalāt al-Ishā.63 If this is also not possible, it is recommended qaďā be recited.
13. Eat large raisins for 40 days on an empty stomach, every day 21 pieces, each piece eaten after the recitation of Bismillah.
14. Remember Allāh (SwT) (recite the dhikr of ‘Allāh (SwT)’) constantly.
15. Help other people with their needs.
16. Look at the faces of pious people and beautiful scenes of nature.
17. Do not mix with people who have bad manners.
18. Go for ziyārat.
19. Recite Ŝalāt on time.
20. Name the child in the stomach, and choosing a good name like Muĥammad, °Alī and Fāťima, and call him/her by this name.
21. Talk to the child in the stomach, as this increases the closeness of the parents and the child. This remains in the memory of the child, even after birth.64
Specific acts for each of the 9 months of pregnancy65
• Recite Surat Yāsīn (36) and al-Saffāt (37) on Thursday and Friday and blow on the stomach.
• Eat sweet apple in the morning.
• Eat pomegranate before breakfast on Friday.
• Eat a very small amount of khakhe shafaa66 (the size of a lentil) before sunset.
• Pray daily prayers at its fadhilah time.
• Recite the Adhān/Iqāmah before prayers with your hand on the stomach.
• Recite Surat al-Qadr (97) on 2 dates everyday and eat them on an empty stomach.
• Recite Surat al-Mulk (67) on Thursday and Friday.
• Recite Ŝalawāt (with Wa Ajjil Farajahum added at the end) on Thursday 140 times and on Friday 100 times:
أَللٌّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَجِّلْ فَرَجَهُمْ
• Recite the following long Ŝalawāt with the hand on the stomach:
أَللٌّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَجِّلْ فَرَجَهُمْ وَ أَهْلِكْ عَدُوَّهُمْ مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَ الإِِنْسِ مِنَ الأََوَّلِينَ وَ الآخِرِينَ.
“O Allāh (SwT)! Bless Muĥammad and the family of Muĥammad, and hasten their release from suffering, and destroy their enemy, and curse their enemies from among the jinn and humankind from the beginning to the end (of time).”67
• Eat meat with sweet apple and some milk every week.
• Recite Surat al-Tawĥīd (112) on 2 jujube (dark red fruit; also known as the Chinese date) everyday and eat them on an empty stomach.
• Recite Surat Āli-’ Imrān (3) on Thursday and Friday.
• Recite Ŝalawāt (with Wa Ajjil Farajahum) 140 times.
• Recite the long Ŝalawāt before every Ŝalāt keeping the hands on the stomach:
أَللٌّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَجِّلْ فَرَجَهُمْ وَ أَهْلِكْ عَدُوَّهُمْ مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَ الإِِنْسِ مِنَ الأََوَّلِينَ وَ الآخِرِينَ.
“O Allāh (SwT)! Bless Muĥammad and the family of Muĥammad, and hasten their release from suffering, and destroy their enemy, and curse their enemies from among the jinn and humankind from the beginning to the end (of time).”68
• Eat wheat and meat and drink milk every week.
• Eat honey in the morning.
• Recite Ayat al-Kursī (Suratul Baqarah (2), Verse 255) on an apple everyday and eat it on an empty stomach.
• Eat a very small amount of Makka Ubani (the size of a lentil) on an empty stomach.69
• Recite Surat al-Dahr/al-Insān (76) on Thursday and Friday.
• Recite Surat al-Qadr (97) in one Rak°at of every prayer.
• After daily prayers, recite Surat al-Kawthar (108), Surat al-Qadr (97) and the long Ŝalawāt with the hand on the stomach:
أَللٌّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَجِّلْ فَرَجَهُمْ وَ أَهْلِكْ عَدُوَّهُمْ مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَ الإِِنْسِ مِنَ الأََوَّلِينَ وَ الآخِرِينَ.
“O Allāh (SwT)! Bless Muĥammad and the family of Muĥammad, and hasten their release from suffering, and destroy their enemy, and curse their enemies from among the jinn and humankind from the beginning to the end (of time).”70
رَبَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّيَّاتِنَا قُرَّةَ أَعْـيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا
“Our Lord! Grant us comfort in our spouses and descendants, and make us Imāms of the Godwary.”71
• Recite Astaghfirullaha Rabbi Wa Atubu Ilaik (I seek forgiveness from Allāh (SwT) and turn to Him) 7 times:
أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللٌّهَ رَبِّـي وَ أَتُوبُ إِلَيْكَ
• Recite Ŝalawāt 140 times after prayers.
• Eat sweet apple, honey and pomegranate.
• Start reciting Ŝalāt al-Layl (if you cannot manage this on time, recite qaďā).
• Recite Surat al-Tin (95) on 2 figs everyday and eat them on an empty stomach.
• Choose the child’s name before it is 4 months and 10 days old.
• Recite Surat al-Fatĥ (48) on Thursday and Friday.
• Recite Surat al-Naŝr (110) in a daily prayer.
• Rub khakhe shafaa on the stomach.
• Eat a date every morning.
• From the start of the 5th month, at the time of Ŝalāt, recite Adhān and Iqāmah with your hand on the stomach.
• Recite Surat al-°amd (1) on an egg everyday and eat it on an empty stomach.
• Recite Surat al-Wāqiah (56) on Thursday and Friday.
• Recite Surat al-Tin (95) in one of the Rak°at of Maghrib and Isha prayers.
• Rub khakhe shafaa on the stomach, after every Ŝalāt.
• Eat fig and olive after breakfast.
• Either in the morning or night, try to eat bone marrow72, and stay away from fatty foods.
• Recite Surat al-Fatĥ (48) on a pomegranate everyday and eat it on an empty stomach.
• From the 7th month, for 40 days after the Fajr prayer, recite Surat al-An°ām (6) on almonds and then eat them.
• From the 7th month onwards, eat an almond a day.
• Recite Surat al-Nahl (16) on Monday.
• Recite Surat Yāsīn (36) and Surat al-Mulk (67) on Thursday and Friday.
• From this month on, recite Surat al-Nūr (24) often.
• From this month on, after tasbih, recite 5 Surahs (al-°adīd (57), al-°ashr (59), al-Saff (61), al-Jumu°ah (62) and al-Taghabun (64)) often.
• Recite Surat al-Qadr (97) and Surat al-Tawĥīd (112) in daily prayers.
• Recite Ŝalawāt 140 times every day.
• Eat a little watermelon after food (do not drink water before or after).
• Recite Surat Yāsīn (36) on a quince everyday and eat on an empty stomach.
• Recite Surat al-Qadr (97) 10 times on Saturday after Subh prayer.
• Recite Surat al-Tin (95) twice on Sunday after Subh prayer.
• Recite Surat Yāsīn (36) on Monday.
• Recite Surat al-Furqān (25) on Tuesday.
• Recite Surat al-Dahr/al-Insān (76) on Wednesay.
• Recite Surat Muĥammad (47) on Thursday.
• Recite Surat al-Saffāt (37) on Friday.
• Eat sweet yoghurt and honey.
• Eat sweet pomegranate on Friday on an empty stomach.
• If there is no fear of harm, use vinegar (in your food) once a week.
• Do not eat garam masala.73
• Sacrifice a sheep for Imām Mahdī and eat from that.
• Eat dates and kebab. About eating dates, it is narrated from the Prophet (S) : “In the month in which pregnant ladies will give birth, feed them dates as their children will be forbearing and virtuous.”74
• Recite Surat al-°Aŝr (103) and Surat al-Dhāriyāt (51) in Dhuhr and °Asr prayers.
• Recite Surat al-°ajj (22) on Thursday and Surat al-Fāťir (35) on Friday night.
• Recite Surat al-Insān/al-Dahr (76) on some dates and milk everyday and eat on an empty stomach.
• Try to avoid looking at pictures and into the mirror.
• Go for a daily walk at a slow pace.
General supplications over the course of pregnancy75
1. Recite Surat Mariam (19) daily for a righteous and pious child.
2. Recite Surat Yāsīn (36) 40 times (each time blow on a pomegranate and eat it).
3. Recite Surat Yūsuf (12) 40 times (each time blow on an apple and eat it).
4. Recite Surahs: al-°adīd (57), al-°ashr (59), al-Taghabun (64), al-Jumu°ah (62) and al-Saff (61) 40 times before sleeping on Thursday night or any night.
5. Recite Surat al-Tawĥīd (112) 50 times every day after Subh prayer.
6. Recite Surat al-Qadr (97) 50 times every day after Subh prayer.
7. Recite Surat al-Anbiyā (21) continuously (at least once a week) for a pious child.
8. For a patient child, recite Surat al-°Aŝr (103) with your hand on the stomach.
9. Recite Ziyārat al-Jām°ia 40 times.
10. Recite Ziyārat Ale Yāsīn (and the Du°ā that follows it) 40 times.
11. Recite 40 Ziyārat °Ashūrā (including 100 curses and 100 salaams and Du°ā Alqamah; if the 100 curses and salaams are not possible, then even 10 times will suffice).
12. Recite Ziyārat of Imām Mahdī 40 times.
13. Recite °adith al-Kisā 40 times.
14. Recite Du°ā al-Tawassul 40 times.
15. Recite Du°ā Kumail on Thursday night 40 times.
16. Recite Du°ā al-Nudba on Friday mornings (before Dhuhr) 40 times.
17. Recite Du°ā al-Samāt on Friday afternoons 40 times.
18. Recite Du°ā al-Aĥd 40 times consecutively after the Fajr prayer.
19. Recite Ŝalawāt 140 times a day.
20. Recite Istighfār 70 times after Ŝalāt.
21. Recite Tasbīĥ of Haďrat Fāťima after every Ŝalāt, and every night before sleep.
22. Recite the entire Qur`an once (and send the reward to Imām Mahdī ).
23. When feeling movement of the child, place your hand on the stomach and recite Ŝalawāt and Surat al-Tawĥīd (112).
NOTE: It is important to note for the recommended 40 weekly supplications (such as Du°ā Kumail), that there are approximately 40 weeks in a pregnancy.
Qur`anic supplications for righteous children
1. The Du°ā of Prophet (S) Ibrāhīm:
رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ
“My Lord! Give me (an heir), one of the righteous.”76
2. Another Du°ā of Prophet Ibrāhīm (as):
رَبِّ اجْــعَـلْـنِي مُقِيمَ الصَّلاَةِ وَمِنْ ذُرِّيَّتِي رَبَّنَا وَتَقَبَّلْ دُعَاءِ
“My Lord! Make me a maintainer of the prayer, and my descendants (too). Our Lord! Accept my supplication.”77
3. The Du°ā of Prophet Zakariya(as):
رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنْ لَّدُنْكَ ذُرِّيَّةً طَيِّبَةً إِنَّكَ سَمِيعُ الدُّعَاءِ
“My Lord! Grant me a good offspring from you! Indeed you hear all supplications”78
4. The Du°ā of the Prophet (S):
وَأَصْلِحْ لِي فِــي ذُرِّيَّتِي إِنِّي تُبْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَإِنِّي مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ
“And invest my descendants with righteousness. Indeed I have turned to you in penitence, and I am one of the Muslims.”79
5. Another Du°ā of the Prophet (S):
رَبَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّيَّاتِنَا قُرَّةَ أَعْـيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا
“Our Lord! Grant us comfort in our spouses and descendants, and make us Imāms of the Godwary.”80
Imām Zain al-°Abidīn’s (as) supplication for righteous children81
Imām Zain al-°Abidīn’s (as) Du°ā for children, as narrated in Saĥīfatul Sajjādiya, is a highly recommended Du°ā to be recited during pregnancy and after:
بِسْمِ اللٌّهِ الرَّحْمٌنِ الرَّحِيمِ
أَللٌّهُمَّ وَ مُنَّ عَلَيَّ بِبَقَآءِ وُلْدِي وَ بِإِصْلاَحِهِمْ لِي و بِإِمْـتَاعِي بِهِمْ.
“O God, be kind to me through the survival of my children, setting them right for me, and allowing me to enjoy them!
إِلٌهِي امْدُدْ لِي فِي أَعْمَارِهِمْ، وَ زِدْ لِي فِي آجَالِهِمْ، وَ رَبِّ لِي صَغِيرَهُمْ، وَ قَوِّ لِي ضَعِيفَهُمْ، وَ أَصِحَّ لِي أَبْدَانَهُمْ وَ أَدْيَانَهُمْ وَ أَخْلاَقَهُمْ، وَ عَافِهِمْ فِي أَنْـفُسِهِمْ وَ فِي جَوَارِحِهِمْ وَ فِي كُلِّ مَا عُنِـيتُ بِهِ مِنْ أَمْرِهِمْ، وَ أَدْرِرْ لِي وَ عَلَى يَدِي أَرْزَاقَهُمْ. وَ اجْعَلْهُمْ أَبْرَاراً أَتْقِيَآءَ بُصَرَآءَ سَامِعِينَ مُطِيعِينَ لَكَ، وَ لِأَوْلِيَائِكَ مُحِبِّينَ مُنَاصِحِينَ، وَ لِجَمِيعِ أَعْدَائِكَ مُعَانِدِينَ وَ مُبْغِضِينَ، آمِينَ.
My God, make long their lives for me, increase their terms, bring up the smallest for me, strengthen the weakest for me, rectify for me their bodies, their religious dedication, and their moral traits, make them well in their souls, their limbs, and everything that concerns me of their affair, and pour out for me and upon my hand their provisions! Make them pious, fearing, insightful, hearing, and obedient toward You, loving and well-disposed toward Your friends, and stubbornly resistant and full of hate toward all Your enemies! Amen!
أَللٌّهُمَّ اشْدُدْ بِهِمْ عَضُدِي، وَ أَقِمْ بِهِمْ أَوَدِي، وَ كَثِّرْ بِهِمْ عَدَدِي، وَ زَيِّنْ بِهِمْ مَحْضَرِي، وَ أَحْيِ بِهِمْ ذِكْرِي، وَ اكْفِنِي بِهِمْ فِي غَيْـبَتِي، وَ أَعِنِّي بِهِمْ عَلَى حَاجَتِي، وَ اجْعَلْهُمْ لِي مُحِبِّينَ، وَ عَلَيَّ حَدِبِينَ مُقْبِلِينَ مُسْتَقِيمِينَ لِي، مُطِيعِينَ، غَيْرَ عَاصِينَ وَ لاَ عَاقِّينَ وَ لاَ مُخَالِفِينَ وَ لاَ خَاطِئِينَ.
O God, through them strengthen my arm, straighten my burdened back, multiply my number, adorn my presence, keep alive my memory, suffice me when I am away, help me in my needs, and make them loving toward me, affectionate, approaching, upright, obedient, never disobedient, disrespectful, opposed, or offenders!”
وَ أَعِنِّي عَلَى تَرْبِيَتِهِمْ وَ تَأْدِيـبِهِمْ، وَ بِرِّهِمْ،وَ هَبْ لِي مِنْ لَدُنْكَ مَعَهُمْ أَوْلاَداً ذُكُوراً، وَ اجْعَلْ ذٌلِكَ خَيْراً لِي، وَ اجْعَلْهُمْ لِي عَوْناً عَلَى مَا سَأَلْتُكَ.
Help me in their upbringing, their education, and my devotion toward them, give me among them from Yourself male children, make that a good for me, and make them a help for me in that which I ask from You!
وَ أَعِذْنِي وَ ذُرِّيَّتِي مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيمِ، فَإِنَّكَ خَلَقْتَنَا وَ أَمَرْتَنَا وَ نَهَيْتَنَا وَ رَغَّبْتَنَا فِي ثَوَابِ مَا أَمَرْتَنَا وَ رَهَّبْتَنَا عِقَابَهُ، وَ جَعَلْتَ لَنَا عَدُوّاً يَكِيدُنَا، سَلَّطْتَهُ مِنَّا عَلَى مَا لَمْ تُسَلِّطْنَا عَلَيْهِ مِنْهُ، أَسْكَنْتَهُ صُدُورَنَا، وَ أَجْرَيْتَهُ مَجَارِيَ دِمَائِنَا، لاَ يَغْفُلُ إِنْ غَفَلْنَا، وَ لاَ يَنْسَي إِنْ نَسِينَا، يُؤْمِـنُنَا عِقَابَكَ، وَ يُخَوِّفُنَا بِغَيْرِكَ.
Give me and my progeny refuge from the accursed Satan, for You have created us, commanded us, and prohibited us, and made us desire the reward of what You have commanded, and fear its punishment! You assigned to us an enemy who schemes against us, gave him an authority over us in a way that You didst not give us authority over him, allowed him to dwell in our breasts and let him run in our blood vessels; he is not heedless, though we be heedless, he does not forget, though we forget; he makes us feel secure from Your punishment and fills us with fear toward other than You.
إِنْ هَمَمْنَا بِفَاحِشَةٍ شَجَّعَنَا عَلَيْهَا، وَ إِنْ هَمَمْنَا بِعَمَلٍ صَالِحٍ ثَـبَّطَنَا عَنْهُ، يَتَعَرَّضُ لَنَا بِالشَّهَوَاتِ، وَ يَنْصِبُ لَنَا بِالشُّبُهَاتِ، إِنْ وَعَدَنَا كَذَبَنَا، وَ إِنْ مَنَّانَا أَخْلَفَنَا، وَ إِلاَّ تَصْرِفْ عَنَّا كَيْدَهُ يُضِلَّنَا، وَ إِلاَّ تَقِنَا خَبَالَهُ يَسْتَزِلَّنَا.
If we are about to commit an indecency, he gives us courage to do so, and if we are about to perform a righteous work, he holds us back from it. He opposes us through passions, and sets up for us doubts. If he promises us, he lies, and if he raises our hopes, he fails to fulfil them. If You do not turn his trickery away from us, he will misguide us, and if You do not protect us from his corruption, he will cause us to slip.
أَللٌّهُمَّ فَاقْهَرْ سُلْطَانَهُ عَنَّا بِسُلْطَانِكَ حَتَّى تَحْبِسَهُ عَنَّا بِكَثْرَةِ الدُّعَاءِ لَكَ فَنُصْبِحَ مِنْ كَيْدِهِ فِي الْمَعْصُومِينَ بِكَ.
O God, so defeat his authority over us through Your authority, such that You holdest him back from us through the frequency of our supplication to You and we leave his trickery and rise up among those preserved by you from sin!
أَللٌّهُمَّ أَعْطِنِي كُلَّ سُؤْلِي، وَ اقْضِ لِي حَوَائِجِي، وَ لاَ تَمْنَعْنِي الإِِجَابَةَ وَ قَدْ ضَمِنْتَهَا لِي، وَ لاَ تَحْجُبْ دُعَائِي عَنْكَ وَ قَدْ أَمَرْتَنِي بِهِ ، وَ امْـنُنْ عَلَيَّ بِكُلِّ مَا يُصْلِحُنِي فِي دُنْـيَايَ وَ آخِرَتِي مَا ذَكَرْتُ مِنْهُ وَ مَا نَسِيتُ، أَوْ أَظْهَرْتُ أَوْ أَخْفَيْتُ أَوْ أَعْلَنْتُ أَوْ أَسْرَرْتُ.
O God, grant me my every request, accomplish for me my needs, withhold not from me Your response when You hast guaranteed a response, veil not my supplication from Yourself, when You hast commanded me to make it, and be kind to me through everything that will set me right in this world and the next, in everything that I remember or forget, display or conceal, make public or keep secret!
وَ اجْعَلْنِي فِي جَمِيعِ ذٌلِكَ مِنَ الْمُصْلِحِينَ بِسُؤَالِي إِيَّاكَ، الْمُنْجِحِينَ بِالطَّلَبِ إِلَيْكَ غَيْرِ الْمَمْـنُوعِينَ بِالتَّوَكُّلِ عَلَيْكَ. الْمُعَوَّذِِينَ بِالتَّعَوُّذِ بِكَ، الرَّابِحِينَ فِي التِّجَارَةِ عَلَيْكَ، الْمُجَارِينَ بِعِزِّكَ، الْمُوَسَّعِ عَلَيْهِمُ الرِّزْقُ الْحَلاَلُ مِنْ فَضْلِكَ، الْوَاسِعِ بِجُودِكَ وَ كَرَمِكَ، الْمُعَزِّينَ مِنَ الذُّلِّ بِكَ، وَ الْمُجَارِينَ مِنَ الظُّلْمِ بِعَدْلِكَ، وَ الْمُعَافِيْنَ مِنَ الْبَلاَءِ بِرَحْمَتِكَ، وَ الْمُغْنِينَ مِنَ الْفَقْرِ بِغِنَاكَ، وَ الْمَعْصُومِينَ مِنَ الذُّنُوبِ وَ الزَّلَلِ وَ الْخَطَاءِ بِتَقْوَاكَ، وَ الْمُوَفَّقِينَ لِلْخَيْرِ وَ الرُّشْدِ وَ الصَّوَابِ بِطَاعَتِكَ، وَ الْمُحَالِ بَيْنَهُمْ وَ بَيْنَ الذُّنُوبِ بِقُدْرَتِكَ، التَّارِكِينَ لِكُلِّ مَعْصِيَتِكَ، السَّاكِنِينَ فِي جِوَارِكَ.
In all of this, place me through my asking You among those who set things right, those who are answered favourably when they request from You and from whom is not withheld when they put their trust in You, those accustomed to seek refuge in You, those who profit through commerce with You, those granted sanctuary through Your might, those given lawful provision in plenty from Your boundless bounty through Your munificence and generosity, those who reach exaltation after abasement through You, those granted sanctuary from wrong through Your justice, those released from affliction through Your mercy, those delivered from need after poverty through Your riches, those preserved from sins, slips, and offenses through reverential fear toward You, those successful in goodness, right conduct, and propriety through obeying You, those walled off from sins through Your power, the refrainers from every act of disobedience toward You, the dwellers in Your neighbourhood!
أَللَّهُمَّ أَعْطِنَا جَمِيعَ ذٌلِكَ بِتَوْفِيقِكَ وَ رَحْمَتِكَ، وَ أَعِذْنَا مِنْ عَذَابِ السَّعِيرِ، وَ أَعْطِ جَمِيعَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ وَ الْمُسْلِمَاتِ وَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَ الْمُؤْمِنَاتِ مِثْلَ الَّذِي سَأَلْتُكَ لِنَفْسِي وَ لِوُلْدِي فِي عَاجِلِ الدُّنْيَا وَ آجِلِ الآخِرَةِ، إِنَّكَ قَرِيبٌ مُجِيبٌ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ عَفُوٌّ غَفُورٌ رَءُوفٌ رَحِيمٌ. وَ آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً، وَ فِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَ قِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ.
O God, give me all of that through Your bestowal of success and Your mercy, grant us refuge from the chastisement of the burning, and give to all Muslims, male and female, and all the faithful, male and female, the like of what I have asked for myself and my children, in the immediate of this world and the deferred of the next! Verily You art the Near, the Responder, the All-hearing, the All-knowing, the Pardoner, the Forgiving, the Clement, the Merciful! And give to us in this world good, and in the next world good, and protect us from the chastisement of the Fire!