When we talk about Fatima as a daughter, we are talking more about the relationship between father and daughter. The majority of the Hadith we have tell us about the Prophet’s ﷺ actions and it is through his actions and words that we know how strong his love for Fatima was. It is because of this, that this story is just as much about the Prophet ﷺ as a father as it is about Fatima (RA) as a daughter.
Fatima (RA) was known to be the favorite of the daughters. The Prophet ﷺ loved his daughters equally and never showed more love to one over the other. However, Fatima (RA) had a special place in his heart, especially being the baby of the family. The most significant reason is that she was the only one, with the exception of Abu Bakr, who experienced his entire prophethood. She was a young child of five when he became a prophet and she endured all the hardships and events that followed. Her sisters however, were much older, were married and died young. The prophet ﷺ had to bury all this children and their beloved mother, except for Fatima (RA), who had to bury him.
From a very young age, Fatima (RA) was her father’s shadow-going wherever he went and learning from him as she grew. Aishah (RA) narrated that no one bore a resemblance to Mohammed ﷺ as much as Fatima (RA) did. She not only looked like him, but all her mannerisms-her way of speaking, walking, sitting, standing, etc.- were exactly like him.
After the death of her mother, the pressure on the Prophet ﷺ increased and Fatima (RA) made extra sure that she was always with him when he left the house, sometime having to sneak after him and he wouldn’t know at first that she was with him. One such day, she saw about 10 men surround the Prophet ﷺ and she immediately ran to her father’s side and started throwing rocks at the men, scolding them for taking advantage of her father after the deaths of her mother and his uncle. She took care of her father so much that people gave her the name Um Abeeha, mother of her father.
When Fatima got married to Ali, she had to move far outside the city. Mohammed ﷺ started to miss her and was not used to her being so far from him. Harithah bin Numan Ansari had a large lot of land in which he had built houses for the Prophet’s ﷺ wives. One day Harithah asked the Prophet ﷺ if he would like to bring Fatima (RA) into one of those houses so she can be closer to him. Prophet Mohammed ﷺ replied that he does, but he was too shy to ask. And so it was that Fatima (RA) and Ali moved to their new house close to her father.
Whenever Fatima (RA) walked into a room, Prophet Mohammed ﷺ would immediately stop everything to go kiss her forehead and welcome her with so much love. He would take her hand and sit her down next to him before he continued whatever he was doing. Near the time of the Prophet’s ﷺ death, Fatima knew that he was dying because it was the first time he didn’t get up to kiss her when she walked into the room.
The Prophet ﷺ once gave a Khutba in which he said that Fatima (RA) was “a part of me. Anything that upsets her will upset me.” Aishah (RA) said that it was like Fatima (RA) left the aura of her personality wherever she went. If the Prophet ﷺ saw her troubled, he would become troubled and if he saw her happy, he immediately would break into a smile and be happy. Whenever she was in any kind of pain or starvation, the Prophet ﷺ used to make Duaa (supplication) for her and tell her what verses of the Quran to read to help ail her symptoms.
There was one night when a lady gave Fatima (RA) some pieces of bread and some roasted meat. Fatima (RA) covered the food with a cloth and sent for her father to come have his meal at her house. When her father arrived, she uncovered the food and was shocked to find an abundance of meat and bread. The Prophet ﷺ smiled and asked her who had sent all this food? “It is from Allah, He provides sustenance to who He pleases without limits,” she replied. They ate the meal along with Ali and the children but there some so much left over that they passed it along to the Mothers of the Believers who in turn had their fill and passed it to their neighbors. Prophet Mohammed ﷺ thanked Allah for the food and for blessing him with a daughter that resembles much of Mariam. In fact, one of Fatima’s (RA) nicknames was Al Batool because of how much she resembled Mariam in her humility and her devotion to God. The Prophet ﷺ said, “The best women that ever lived are four: Mariam (Mother of Jesus), Asiyah (Pharaoh’s wife), Khadeja (RA) and Fatima (RA).
Fatima (RA) was very humble and did not favor herself over others for being the Prophet’s ﷺ daughter. Aisha (RA) said that she never saw anyone more devoted to the truth than Fatima (RA). She would stand shoulder to shoulder with all the other women during the battles and tend to the wounded. When she saw her father wounded she couldn’t handle it and tended to his wounds herself.
Whenever the Prophet ﷺ came back from a journey or from a battle, he would pray two rakahs in the Mosque and then visit Fatima (RA) before doing anything else. If he was going to leave Madinah, he would never leave without visiting Fatima (RA).
Fatima (RA) continued to be around her father all the time until the day he died. Her devotion and love for him and the fact that she lived throughout his entire Prophethood is why she was named one of the greatest four women who ever lived.
Next week, we will talk about Fatima as a mother Inshallah!
*Don’t you think it is such a wonderful thing that the person that resembled the Prophet Mohammed ﷺ most was a woman? It could easily have been Anas ibn Malik or Zaid ibn Harithah or even Ali who were with him all the time, even from a young age and would probably also have picked up his mannerisms. Subhannallah, Allah has given such a great value to women even in the small details.
*The Prophet’s ﷺ humbleness continues to make an impact on me time and time again. He could have easily asked that his daughter be moved next to him from even before she moved into the house that was far away and he wouldn’t have been granted it. But he was too shy! And when Fatima was hungry he could have easily asked people to feed her but instead he made duaa that Allah bless her with food. It is just so incredible to see how humble he was and how he never saw himself as more privileged than anyone else, even in times of need. Mashallah what an incredible example he is. May Allah grant us the strength to be like him, Peace be upon him.
Don’t you just love the relationship between Fatima (RA) and the Prophet Mohammed ﷺ? Its so beautiful.
Read the rest of the series:
Part 1-Early Life
Part 2-Love and Marriage
Part 4-Fatima, the mother
Part 5-The Legacy
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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