By Rashid Samnakay, New Age Islam
28 July 2022
In All Cultures, Traditions And Religions; The Menstrual Cycle And The Process Associated With Birth Of A Child Is Considered An “Impurity” Of The Mother For Some Days, And In Some Societies Extend Over Months
In all Cultures, Traditions and Religions; the Menstrual Cycle and the process associated with birth of a child is considered an “impurity” of the mother for some days, and in some societies extend over months. In this process the poor human female/ Mother is ostracised from normal Social contacts and oftentimes prevented from entering Houses of Worship so that she cannot perform any of the Religious rituals to avail herself nearness to her God. Is this, in case God too is defiled by human activities?
This practice, one may call “punishment” meted to her for being an adult female and a mother, in some societies; is extended even further by preventing her from entering her main residence and kitchen! Such is the impurity attached to her services to humanity and the gratitude expressed for the female in the process of propagating human species that God wants her to; suffering the trauma of life threatening labour pains.
Strangely also, delivering a female child; the punishment period of impurity for the mother is extended to twice that of delivering a male child. So much for the cultural and ritualistic frailties and religious logic of some societies.
Also Read: Mythology of Mother-Goddess among Muslims
No exception is made for delivering even Godly Children; with whom various miracles are attached! To believe in these miracles, one has to have implicit faith in one's Religion, as its God has no limitations and is capable of performing whatever miracle He wishes to irrespective of His own Laws of Creation of Universe. Kun Fayakoon-- be and it was!
Ironically, for delivering some of the famous Godly children, the mothers were not spared of the ostracism of society and Religion......with the exception of One in the Muslim Nation's theology......Fatimah bint Asad, the mother of Hazrat Ali, the child who later was to become the fourth Khalifa and the first Imam of the splinter faction, called Shia Muslims.
Fatimah bint Asad was the wife of Abu Talib, the uncle of Apostle Muhammad ibn Abdullah, whose mother Aminah too was attributed a miracle of having a Nur/Light shining in her womb when she was carrying Muhammad. And many more.
(In Indonesia a pregnant mother had tied a tape recorder to her belly, which she switched on at the prayer time giving Azan. Even the President had visited her!)
Largely, the astonishing story attributed to Fatimah bint Asad, the mother of A'li goes like this:
During the days of her advance pregnancy, She was in the vicinity of the ancient Temple, the Kaabah; often referred to later as the House of Allah/Baitullah.
She felt the pangs of labour and looking for a place to rest, Fatimah walked along the wall of the Temple. Miraculously the wall split open and she walked in. Giving birth to her baby boy, she is said to have stayed there for three days, to emerge out of there to go home. A holy miracle, in a Temple surrounded by hundreds of idols.
Thus Fatimah bint Asad becomes the mother of a child born in the House of Worship:
1-Without being accused of personal impurity,
2- Defiling a house of Worship....and
3-Perhaps the first such person to be a Mother of a Holy person born in the House full of idols.
As said above, one has to be a firm believer in one’s religious teachings to accept some of the worldly events. If not, the following questions come to mind purely on the basis of day to day experiences:-
Human traditions from way back have treated females' periods and child birth process as impure due to bodily discharges such as blood. Such discharges from males too are considered impure.
Houses of Worship are sacrosanct and therefore emphatically protected from being defiled and made impure by such discharges.
A mother having gone through the trauma of child birth needs special nourishment and care after her postnatal ordeal. How is it that Fatimah stayed away from such care for three days. A humanly impossible effort. Yes, Divine intervention and Angels may have solved the problem.
How was it that Fatimah's household did not look for her for three day? Again a simple common sense enquiry.
Miracles are attributed to the Holy Child in almost all religions, even illogical ones that defy common sense. But Fatimah's story defies the human societal taboos that govern societies. For example the famous saying that goes something like this:
Baa Khuda Divanaah Bashad; Baa Muhammad Hushiyar Baad.
You may get away with being mad at God but may God help you should you say anything against Muhammad.
When it comes to us humans, elevating a person to godly status, we rob many of the attributes belonging to God and impose them upon the person we have elevated and revere. Then the issue of my Prophet against your Prophet becomes the issue of Hushiyar Baad. Personality Cultism needs such esoteric props to cast in concrete and to avoid them being eroded by the application of intelligence.
Could it not be that Kaabah of the time was a mud hut and Fatimah bint Asad or even a kind hearted person punched a hole in the wall to let her in to provide some primitive privacy?
Could it not be that she was too weak to get up on her feet to go home and so her people brought the necessities to her for three days!
This story is penned as a result of being chided for quoting an Urdu stanza to a friend relating to something completely unrelated matter. Tu Zerey Saaye Kaabah Bhi Ibaadat Nahin Kartaa! You don't even perform worship in the shadow (influence) of the Kaabah.
This offended his sensitivity with regard to the Kaabah, which to him is more than the house of God; as Hazrat A'li was born inside it! I tried to appease him by saying poets are Majnoon. May God have mercy on me, Ameen
A regular contributor to New Age Islam, Rashid Samnakay is an Indian-origin Engineer (Retd.) based in Australia for over forty years.
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