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Introduction

Lady Fatima Masuma (A) was the daughter of the 7th Imam, Imam Mūsā al-Kāđim (A) and the sister of the 8th Imam, Imam Ali al-Ridā (A). She was a noble lady who dedicated her life to Islam and Allah. She was highly gifted and due to the training of her father and brother, she has achieved a high reputation in history for her knowledge and piety.

She was only six years old when her father was arrested by Hārūn (the 6th Abbasid Caliph) and thereafter, she was brought up under the care of her brother, Imam al-Ridā (A) for twenty-one years.

In the year 200 A.H, Ma’mūn (the 7th Abbasid Caliph) forced the Imam (A) to move from Madina to Khurāsān, in Iran. And so, Lady Fatima Masuma (A) was once more separated from her guardian.

In the year 201 A.H, she decided to leave Madina and travel to Khurāsān to be at the side of her brother, intending to help him in his mission to preach Islam. But regrettably, she never reached him.

The caravan that she was travelling with, was ambushed at Sāweh, where she had to witness the brutal killing of her close family members. As a result, she can be compared to Lady Zaynab (A), who suffered a similar plight in Karbalā.

Lady Fatima Masuma (A) was taken ill at Sāweh. From here, the Shi`a of the nearby Qum brought her to their city, where she spent her last few days, before passing away during the month of Rabī` al-Thānī in 201 A.H.

Lady Fatima Masuma (A) is buried in Qum, Iran. Due to her blessed presence and patronage, the city has grown into a centre of Shi`a learning; a destination for thousands of Muslim students from over 80 countries.

The Mirror Tiled Porch Entrance to the Shrine of Lady Fatima Masuma (A), from the New Courtyard

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Life in Qum largely revolves around the Haram of Lady Fatima Masuma (A), which is the focal point of this holy city.

Every year hundreds of thousands of pilgrims come from all over the world to pay homage to this noble lady. They come to pay their respect to Lady Fatima Masuma (A) in accordance to the reliable traditions of three Holy Imams (A) which are quoted below:

From the 6th Imam, Imam Ja`far al-Şādiq (A):

تُقبَض فيها امْراةٌ منْ وُلْدى، اِسْمُها فاطِمَةُ بِنْتُ مُوسى، وتَدْخُلُ بِشَفاعَتِها شيعَتي الجنّة بَأجْمَعِهِمْ

“A lady from my children whose name will be Fatima, daughter of Mūsā, will die in Qum. On the day of Judgement this lady will intercede for all my Shi`a to enter Heaven.”1

From the 8th Imam, Imam Ali al-Ridā (A):

مَنْ زارَ الْمَعْصومَةَ بِقُمْ كَمَنْ زارَني

“Whoever visits Masuma in Qum is like the one who has visited me.”2

From the 9th Imam, Imam Muhammad Taqī al-Jawād (A):

مَنْ زارَ عَمَّتي بِقُمَّ فَلَهُ الجَنَّةُ

"Whoever visits my aunt in Qum will enter Heaven.”3
  • 1. `Allāmah Muhammad Bāqir Majlisī, Bihār al-Anwār, vol. 60, p. 228; Qādī Nūrullāh Shūshtarī, Majālis al-Mu’minīn, vol. 1, p. 83.
  • 2. Mīrzā Muhammed Taqī Khān Sepehr, Nāsikh al-Tawārikh, vol. 3, p. 68; Shaykh Dhabīhullāh Mahallātī, Rayāhīn al-Sharī`ah, vol. 5, p. 35.
  • 3. Bihār al-Anwār, vol. 102, p. 265.
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