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In my opinion, this injustice to her is bigger than setting fire on her house, pressing her between the door and the wall and the other harms done to her.
In the name of God the most compassionate the most merciful
Praise be to God, the Lord of the universe, and peace and blessings be upon our master Muhammad and his immaculate progeny
Fatimah al-Zahra (sa), the light of God’s greatness
We are in the days of Fatimiyyah, which marks the martyrdom anniversary of the best of all women of the world and the heaven. It is necessary that we pay more attention in these days to the status of this lady and her position before God and the Prophet (s.a.w.a).
Commemorating Fatimiyyah is not just holding or attending mourning ceremonies and weeping over what happened to her, a tragedy that no one can deny since there is plentiful compelling evidence. If someone attempted to deny one evidence, he would find another one to the contrary that proved it.
Did she die a normal death after the Prophet (s.a.w.a)? Didn’t she suffer a tragedy? Wasn’t she harassed? Both Shia and Sunni sources narrate her illness and the tragedy she faced. Wasn’t her claim rejected?
It is narrated in Shia and Sunni books and no one can deny that she was the owner of Fadak. With ordinance from God the Prophet (s.a.w.a) gave Fadak to Fatimah (sa), but the first caliph asked her to provide witness that it belonged to her. While it is true that when one makes a claim one has to provide witnesses, but had they not heard that the Prophet (s.a.w.a) had named Fatimah (sa) ‘the Truthful’? Demanding her to provide witnesses implies that she could be making a false claim or may not be telling the truth.
In my opinion, this injustice to her is bigger than setting fire on her house, pressing her between the door and the wall and the other harms done to her. Did God not say in the Quran, “Indeed Allah desires to repel all impurity from you, O People of the Household, and purify you with a thorough purification.” (33:33) All Sunnis and Shias agree that this verse includes Fatimah (sa). There is no doubt about it. All agree that one of the People of the Household, rather its central figure was Fatimah (sa). In this verse God says, “We repelled all forms of impurity from you, impurity of sinning, impurity of mistake, and impurity of ignorance.” This verse clearly proves infallibility and immense knowledge of the Ahl al-Bayt (as), and their purity and truthfulness in actions, sayings and thoughts. So, the Quran testifies to the purity and truthfulness of Lady Fatimah (as).
It is reported that Imam Kadhim (as) said, “Verily Fatimah is truthful and a martyr.” I used to wonder why out of nine different attributes of Lady Fatimah (sa), truthfulness has been singled out and Imam Kadhim (as) emphasizes that she was truthful. It looks like the Imam (as) intended to say that is it even possible that Fatimah (sa) tell a lie?
Is there any injustice to Fatimah (sa) bigger than the first caliph opposing the Quran and rejecting Fatimah’s claim, based on a fabricated hadith? This injustice is bigger than all the tragedies she experienced. Today, for a clergyman to lose his position, it would be enough to be accused of lying. He would not be considered just, people would not say prayers behind him, and his testimony would not be heard.
Even if someone denied setting fire on the door of her house, an incident that has definitely occurred, or denied that she was threatened, we would bring these verses of the Quran as arguments. For six months, when the Prophet (s.a.w.a) passed Ali and Fatimah’s house on his way to perform the morning prayer, he would stop and recite this verse, “Allah intends only to remove from you the impurity [of sin], O people of the [Prophet's] household, and to purify you with [extensive] purification.” (33:33) When 24:36 was revealed which says, “[Such niches are] in mosques which Allah has ordered to be raised and that His name be mentioned therein”, someone asked, “Which houses are these?” The Prophet (s.a.w.a) said, “The houses of the prophets.” Abu Bakr asked, “Is Ali’s house one of them?” The Prophet (s.a.w.a) said, “Yes, rather it is the best of them.”
This injustice is a grave. That is because in the incident of threatening her and setting fire on the door of her house, her physical body was harmed but when they rejected her claim, they rejected her high status, her infallibility, and also the verses of the Quran. Was she an ordinary daughter? Did the Prophet (s.a.w.a) loved her just like any father who loves her daughter? In order to understand the position of lady Fatimah (sa) you should pay attention to this strange hadith which has been narrated, among others, by Sadouq in Maani al-Akhbar. It is reported that the Prophet (s.a.w.a) was asked, “Why was Fatimah called Zahra?” Zahra means light and brightness. The Prophet (s.a.w.a) said, “Because God created her from His light of greatness.” What is God’s light? What is God’s greatness? What is God’s light of greatness? No one knows its real meaning other than the Prophet (s.a.w.a) and the Imams (as). Other people will never understand it. And this is certain. Even if we try our best till the end of our life, we will not be able to understand the meaning of this verse in surah Nour:
“Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The example of His light is like a niche within which is a lamp, the lamp is within glass, the glass as if it were a pearly [white] star lit from [the oil of] a blessed olive tree, neither of the east nor of the west, whose oil would almost glow even if untouched by fire. Light upon light. Allah guides to His light whom He wills. And Allah presents examples for the people, and Allah is Knowing of all things.” (24:35) There are strange points in this verse, a verse which is said to be referring to the Ahl al-Bayt (as). In this verse they have been introduced as the example of God. In three following verses, their other characteristics have been mentioned. Verses 24:35 to 24-38 are related to each other.
God created Fatimah (sa) from His light of greatness. Greatness is one of God’s important attributes. When bowing in prayer, we have to say, “I declare emphatically that my great Lord is free
from imperfections, and I do so by praising Him.” We attribute greatness to God. Great means that His power is above any other power. One meaning for Fatimah (sa) being the light of God’s greatness is that she is a beam of God’s greatness on earth.
The hadith continues as such, “When the light of Fatimah started to shine, it made the heavens and the earth bright.” It means that she is a shining reality not only in the material world but also among non-material beings. Based on this, “Her light made the angels close their eyes and prostrate before God.” This means that since Fatimah is the light of God’s greatness, the angels actually witnessed the greatness of God, and therefore they fell down in prostration. “They asked, ‘O our Lord! What is this light?’” They didn’t know in the beginning what this light was. They only noticed God’s greatness. Therefore, they asked what it was. God said, “This is a light from my light. I placed it in my heaven. I created it from my greatness. I will bring it out from the back of the best of prophets and I will bring out from this light the Imams who will rise for my issue and will guide people towards me. I will make them my vicegerents after revelation has stopped.” The last part of the hadith is very important because it clarifies why God created Fatimah (sa) from the light of His greatness. Aside from honoring the Prophet (s.a.w.a) and granting him a gift, God wanted her to be the mother of the Imams (as). Such a person should be created from God’s light of greatness because an ordinary woman cannot have such capability.
It is reported that Imam Hassan al-Askari (as) said, “We are the proves of God over His creation and Fatimah is God’s proof over us.” I used to wonder what this hadith meant. The Imams (as) being God’s proofs over people is clear. But what does it mean that Fatimah is God’s proof over the Imams (as)? Does it mean that were it not for Fatimah (sa), the Imams (as) did not exist either? One possible interpretation for this hadith is that the creation of the Imams (as) is a blessing resulted from the creation of Fatimah (sa).
The hadith which says, “Fatimah is God’s proof over us,” and we mentioned one of its possible meanings, shows the sacrifices she made after the demise of the Prophet (s.a.w.a). Fatimah (sa) is the first martyr in the way of wilayah. Fadak, khums, Khaibar or other issues were ways to secure the right of wilayah. Fatimah (sa) tried more than anyone else to secure Imam Ali’s right. Didn’t she go to the houses of the Muhajirun and the Ansar and criticized them saying, “Weren’t you present on the day of Ghadir? Didn’t the Prophet (s.a.w.a) appoint Ali as his successor?” Just to think about the sacrifices she made is enough for one to weep bitterly.
How long had passed that Fatimah (as) had to remind them of the day of Ghadir? What had happened? After the demise of the Prophet (s.a.w.a) Fatimah (as) made great sacrifices to defend the wilayah. The speech she delivered, which itself is a miraculous speech and it is one of God’s bounties that it has been preserved since it was delivered at a time when there were no means to write it down, but it was so effective that people kept it. Study this sermon. During the days of Fatimiyyah, every Shia must review this sermon. The main point of this sermon is that the Muhajirun and Ansar had all seen what the Prophet (s.a.w.a) did [on the day of Ghadir] and now if they wanted to be saved they had to follow the wilayah.
In this very hadith, which some believe to be a divine one, the creation of Fatimah (sa) is tied with the creation of the Imams (as). God says He wants to make them His vicegerents on earth and it is Fatimah (sa) who will make it happen. Fatimah’s defense of this reality made her life short and caused her to be martyred.
During the days of Fatimiyyah, we ourselves, our people and our families should try to pay more attention to Lady Fatimah (sa). My father had a great role in popularizing commemorating the days of Fatimiyyah. One of the scholars of Tehran said that he had seen my father in a dream in a magnificent garden. He had asked him about it. My father had said that it had been a gift from his mother Fatimah al-Zahra (my paternal grandmother was sayyidah).
My father used to feel very sad for Fatimah (sa). In the last ten years of his life he used to say to Friday prayer leaders, seminary students, ordinary people and religious groups to hold huge ceremonies during the days of Fatimiyyah and not be influenced by the skepticism cast by some ignorant who say that some of the things narrated about what happened to Fatimah (sa) may not be true. Let’s assume that the door of her house was not burned. What do you say about this great injustice to her that the first caliph rejected her claim and asked her to provide witnesses? Wasn’t this tantamount to rejecting Fatimah (sa) and the verse of the Quran? Hadn’t he heard the verse of Tat-heer?
Juwaini, who was Dhahabi’s teacher, narrates in Faraid al-Simtain that the Prophet (s.a.w.a) had predicted what would happen in future saying, “When I see her I remember what would be done to her after me. It is like I see her house being disrespected.”
Wasn’t it disrespect to her that she had to go to the mosque and cry to safeguard her right. These accounts are not just in Shii books. They are narrated in Sunni books as well.
What is strange is that the Prophet (s.a.w.a) said, “She would call me for help but no one would come to her help.” Then he added, “The first person who would join me after my death will be my daughter. She comes to me while she is sad, killed unjustly, and her right violated. When I see her I will say, ‘O God! Curse who did injustice to her, and punish who took away her right, and debase who disrespected her, and put forever in Hell who hit her on her sides and cause her to abort her baby. Upon my praying the angels will say, ‘Amen.’”
May Lady Fatimah pay special attention to all of us, our Islamic Republic, our seminaries, our people and our youth.