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Lesson 18: The Third Infallible, Fatimah Al-Zahra, The Daughter Of The Prophet

Fatimah (‘a) was born on Jumada al-Thani 5, five years after the appointment of the Prophet from Khadijah. At the age of five, her mother passed away. The great Prophet loved his daughter so much that he used to say “Fatimah is the dearest and most respected of people to me.”

Fatimah’s stature in terms of great human attributes, and virtues, and God’s worship was so high that whenever she went to the Prophet’s house, she was welcomed and greeted by him and he kissed her hand and gave his place to her and about her he has said, “Fatimah is my flesh, whoever pleases her has pleased me and whoever offends her has offended me.”

Imam Hasan (‘a) recounts that, “On a Friday night, my mother, Fatimah, was engaged in worshipping God and saying prayers nonstop until daybreak but she prayed for other people most of the time. I told her, ‘O mother! Why don’t you pray for yourself?’ She replied, ‘O my son! First neighbors, then ourselves.’”1

One day, the great Prophet asked, “What is the best thing for women?”

Fatimah (‘a) replied, “O Father! It is best for women not to be seen by strange men and not to see a strange man.” The great Prophet embraced her and said, “Offspring and generation that some spring from some.”2 That is, Fatimah is the daughter of the Prophet and has obtained her excellence from him.

Indeed, today when the societies are suffering from the consequences of mixing the sexes and their unrestricted relationship, they appreciate the true meaning of Fatimah’s remarks that the only way through which the society might be kept from corruption and depravity is to segregate the sexes at work and at school, otherwise, the society will plunge deeper and deeper into corruption and decadence.

Fatimah (‘a) died at the age of eighteen. For nine years she lived with ‘Ali and bore children like Imam Hasan, Imam Husayn, and Zaynab for the Muslim community. Eventually, approximately three years after the demise of the great Prophet, she passed away in Medina and was secretly buried overnight3. During these three months, she did her best to defend ‘Ali’s right to succession and leadership and finally sacrificed her life for the same cause.

  • 1. Kashf al-Ghummah, vol. 2, 25.
  • 2. Bayt al-Ahzan, 12 and Kashf al- Ghummah, vol.2, 23 with slight difference.
  • 3. It was done so at her request, and she did so to remind Muslims of her dissatisfaction with the events that took place after the death of the Prophet. She voiced her protest through these ways to be recorded and enlighten the Muslims.