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Majlis 10

O Mourners Of Fatimah Az-Zahra (S.A.)!

An aspect of the matter of Fadak with reference to Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) is extremely strange and complex. It should be kept in mind in general that Imam Ali (A) and Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) was such a couple who did not have greed of accumulating wealth. Imam Ali (A) had said: “What interest can I have in Fadak and other property while the real house of human beings is their grave in future.” Therefore, Imam Ali (A) did not have any interest in Fadak.1

What will one who has already shunned the world do with Fadak? What can the sky do for one who has jumped to one side?

A person who is free from the deception and fraud of the material world and its wealth, which is considered as achievement of life by people; when he is so wealthy, what has he got to do with Fadak?

Lady Fatimah’s (S.A.) Meaningful Smile

The tradition I narrate here is an accepted fact in the history of Islam and narrated by Ahle Sunnat narrators. When the Holy Prophet (S) was in his last moments, his beloved daughter Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) was weeping much on his condition.

The Holy Prophet (S) whispered something in her ears and she began to weep louder. Then the Holy Prophet (S) whispered something in her ears and she smiled. It was really strange! Later on she was asked what the Prophet had whispered into her ears. She said:

“At first, my father informed me that he was departing from this world. I wept louder due to the grief of separation. However, when he told me: O daughter! You will be the first to meet me after I go away, I smiled happily.”2

Lady Az-Zahra’s (S.A.) Courage

We also know that Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) used to remain ill and was mostly bed-ridden after the passing away of the Holy Prophet (S). She definitely knew that the lamp of her life would go off soon. In spite of this, her claim over custody of Fadak appears strange. The answer to this question arising in our minds is that the property of Fadak had no value for Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) but it was her legal right.

When one’s right is usurped, it is necessary to claim it back. Therefore, Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) considered it important and went to the Prophet’s mosque in order to defend her right. She was surrounded by women of Bani Hashim and other devoted women as she went to the mosque.3 She delivered a sermon in front of the ruler of the time, which shook him. She demanded her right.

She criticized the claim of the opposing party and did not fear a bit. Why didn’t Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) fear the ruler of time? Was this act against the teachings of Islam? Was this act improper for a woman? Is it wrong for a woman to come to the mosque like this and talk about worldly wealth in front of thousands of people? Is it wrong to defend one’s right? No, absolutely not It was not wrong to defend her right.

Lady Az-Zahra (s.a.) had no attachment with worldly wealth and considered it valueless, which resulted in personal wealth and lust of an individual. She also knew that she would depart from this temporary abode soon.

When a person knows that he is going to leave this world soon, naturally his worldly desires come to an end. Considering this fact, Lady Az-Zahra’s (s.a.) stand was to defend the right in all situations so that the society does not get into the habit of crushing the rights of others. That is why she stepped forward bravely and defended her right well.

She went to the house of the caliph of her time and obtained the sanction letter to restore Fadak from him. However, this sanction letter was soon taken away from her forcibly. After that, she went to the mosque accompanied by the Commander of the Faithful. An unmentionable incident occurred in the mosque and she was forced to challenge the usurpers.

Lady Zaynab’s (S.A.) Courage

You find the same conditions if you look at the character of Lady Zaynab (s.a.). If good character demands that a woman should be timid then Lady Zaynab (s.a.) should also have become timid like other women. According to a famous phrase, she should not have come out of her ‘feminine cover’.

What forced Lady Zaynab (s.a.) to come to the gate of Kufa and deliver a sermon? Can anybody be forced to give a sermon? Then what forced Lady Zaynab (s.a.) to express her courage and address Ibn Ziyad with such names in his court, which put her life and the life of her family members to risk?

Yazid’s court was even more magnificent and its greatness more noticeable because Ibn Ziyad was a governor while Yazid was a caliph. Secondly, Ibn Ziyad was in Kufa whereas Yazid was in Syria, which was in the neighborhood of Constantinople.

The regime had decorated the palaces thoroughly on pretext of keeping up the apparent glory of Islam. It is mentioned in books of history that ‘the green palace’ was so huge that after entering from a gate, one had to pass through a number of courtyards, doors and groups of servants in order to reach the next gate.

Its decorated court had royal thrones, dining tables and beautiful chairs for the rich. It was a magnificent court but the lion-hearted daughter of Ali (A) did not care about those things and said: “O Yazid! You are too lowly and base in my view that I should talk to you.”4

Can a cowardly woman disgrace Yazid in front of all royal courtiers? The greatest risk to Lady Zaynab (s.a.) was losing her life at the hands of that unjust king but she did not fear for her life at all. There was no risk to her honour. In fact, her honour increased because of her bravery.

Therefore this difference is related to a special condition which a woman has. Then the important thing is that this difference is related to character and not to morals or personality.

There is no difference between a man and a woman as regards ethical personality. We all know that even if a man faces such a situation where he is responsible for protecting the trust of society it is no occasion of forgiving and displaying bravery and neither is there scope to show helplessness and weakness. He has to remain trustworthy and act cautiously. He must show courage so that the usurper is not allowed to usurp.5

And there is no power and might except by Allah the High and the Mighty

  • 1. Nahjul Balagha, Faiz ul-Islam, Sermon 45, Pg. 958.
  • 2. Tarikh Kamil, Vol. 3, Pg. 323; Irshad, Shaykh Al-Mufid, Pg. 100; Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 22, Pg. 470.
  • 3. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 9, Pg. 216, Sharh Nahjul Balagha, Ibn Abil Hadid, Vol. 16, Pg. 211.
  • 4. Lohoof, Syed Ibn tawoos, pg.181.
  • 5. Talim wa tarbiyat dar Islam, pg.178-181.