Fatima Al Zahraa (RA) lived a life full of ups and downs. She lost a child, her mother, her sisters, and her father. She lived through times of war, times of hunger and through social and economic hardship. On the other hand, she had a wonderful marriage and enjoyed raising her four children, as well as having the opportunity to witness the prophethood in its fullest.
When the Messenger ﷺ became ill, Fatima (RA) went to visit him and knew he was not well because it was the first time that he did not get up to kiss her. She went to him and he whispered in her ear and she began to cry. He then whispered something else in her ear and she began to laugh. When Aisha (RA) asked her what he said, she replied, “I cannot reveal the secret of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ.”
The Prophet ﷺ passed away that night. It was an extremely difficult time for everyone, especially Fatima (RA). After the funeral, she bumped into Anas ibn Malik, one of the men who buried the Prophet ﷺ. “Anas!” she said to him. “How were you able to throw dirt on the face of Prophet ﷺ? How were you able to do it?” And without waiting for an answer, Fatima (RA) started sobbing and ran off.
After the funeral of the Prophet ﷺ, Aisha (RA) again asked Fatima (RA) what the Prophetﷺ whispered in her ear. Fatima replied, “When he whispered in my ear the first time, he told me he is dying tonight. So I started to cry. Then, he whispered in my ear, you will be the first to follow me. So that made me very happy.”
After the passing of the Prophet ﷺ no one ever saw Fatima (RA) smile. Her grief overwhelmed her and made her sick. While the Prophet ﷺ had to bury all his children, Fatima (RA) was the only child who had to bury him. It was about six months after her father’s death that Fatima (RA) became so sick, she was close to death. She started to give advice and life lessons to her children and she made two requests of Ali. The first one was the after she died, for him to marry Ummama, her niece, because she will be the most loving to their children. The second one was that when they buried her, for her to be completely covered as they are taking her to the burial site because she wished to maintain her modesty, even in death.
Fatima Al Zahraa passed away on the 3rd day of Ramadan in the year 11 Hijri. Her body was washed by Ali, Asma bin Omais and Salamah Umm Raf and buried in Al Baqi by Ali, Abbas, and Fadhal bin Abbas. She was 29 years old.
Ali cried uncontrollably for months. He said that nothing has ever took a toll on him as the death of his beloved wife, Fatima (RA). Her children mourned her at a very young age but they grew from her advice and lessons and became great leaders.
We learn from Fatima (RA) in her faith. She embraced Islam at the age of 5 and witnessed and absorbed the verses of the Quran being revealed. She stood strong in her faith and strongly by her father’s side as the persecution, banishment and mistreatment of the Muslims happened around her. She witnessed the prophethood in its entirety and became a patient, believing woman because of it.
We learn from Fatima (RA) as a daughter and sister. She was like a mother to her older sisters and to her father. She witnessed her mother’s illness and death and helped her father deal with losing Khadeja (RA) along with the hardship he was getting from disbelievers.
We learn from Fatima(RA) as a wife. Because Fatima (RA) had such an excellent upbringing and father figure, it helped her in her household with her husband. She respected Ali and appreciated everything he did for her. She loved him deeply and bore the hardships with him, never once complaining about their state of poverty.
We learn from Fatima(RA) as a mother. She taught her children the lessons that would help them in later life and taught them the religion of the Prophet ﷺ. Her children inherited her wisdom, deep faith, and sincerity to Islam. They remained close to each other.
The Prophet ﷺ named Fatima(RA) the Lady of the People of Paradise. He said that on the Day of Judgment, he, Fatima (RA), Al Hassan and Al Husayn and the ones who love them will sit with together in the shade and eat and drink until the Judgment is over.
May Allah grant us to be among them Inshallah.
Read the rest of the series:
Part 1-Early Life
Part 2-Love and Marriage
Part 3-Fatima, the daughter
Part 4-Fatima, the mother
Quṭb, Muḥammad ʻAlī. Women around the Messenger. Riyadh: International Islamic House, 2007. Print.
“Amr Khalid- Assayida Fatima.” YouTube – Broadcast Yourself. Web. 10 Jan. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuUTkOxsg8o>.
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