07 Mar 2014
BIRTH OF BIBI ZAINAB s.a
Syeda Zainab binte Amir-ul-Momineen s.a
BIRTH OF BIBI ZAINAB s.a
It was five years after the Muslims had accompanied the Prophet (pbuh&hf) and his family in the migration (Hijrah) to Medina, when the Holy Prophet's daughter, Bibi Fatima(s.a.), gave birth to a little girl. When her father, Imam Ali(a.s.), saw his daughter for the first time Imam Hussain(a.s.), who was then almost three years old, was with him. The boy exclaimed in delight, "O father, Allah has given me a sister." Hearing those words Imam Ali (a.s.) began to weep, and when Imam Hussain(a.s.) asked why he was crying so, his father answered that he would soon come to know.
Bibi Fatima(s.a.) and Imam Ali(a.s.) did not name their child until a few days after her birth, for they awaited the Prophet(pbuh) to return from a journey so that he could propose the name. When finally the baby girl was brought before the Prophet (pbuh), held her in his lap and kissed her. The Angel Jibra'il came to him and conveyed the name that was to be hers, and then he began to weep. The Prophet (pbuh) asked why Jibra'il wept and he answered, "O Prophet of Allah. From early on in life this girl will remain entangled in tribulations and trials in this world. First she will weep over your separation (from this world); thereafter she will bemoan the loss of her mother, then her father, and then her brother Hassan. After all this she will be confronted with the trials of the land of Karbala and the tribulations of that lonely desert, as a result of which her hair will turn grey and her back will be bent."
When the members of the family heard this prophecy they all broke down in tears. Imam Hussain(a.s.) now understood why earlier his father had also wept. Then the Prophet (pbuh&hf) named her Zainab(s.a.). When the news of the birth of Bibi Zainab(s.a.) reached Hazrat Salman al-Farsi(a.r.), he went to Imam Ali(a.s.) to congratulate him. But instead of seeing him happy and rejoicing he saw Imam Ali(a.s.) shed tears, and he too was apprised of the events of Karbala and the hardships that were to befall Bibi Zainab(s.a.).
The name â€˜Zainabâ€™ comprises of two parts: "Zain" meaning adornment and ornament and "ab" meaning father. Thus, Zainab means "father's ornament". To Hazrat Zainab, she was her father's ornament and his school of thought and doctrine. When Zainab (A.S.) would speak, everybody would think that as if Hazrat Ali (A.S.) is speaking.
Growing up in Medina
In her character she reflected the best attributes of those who raised her. In sobriety and serenity she was likened to Umm ul-Muminin Khadija, her grandmother (AS); in chastity and modesty to her mother Fatima Zahra (AS); in eloquence to her father Ali (AS); in forbearance and patience to her brother Imam Hasan (AS); and in bravery and tranquility of the heart to Imam Husayn (AS). Her face reflected her father's awe and her grandfather's reverence.