Rafed English

Importance of Motherhood and Pregnancy

The Prophet Muhammad (s) has said that: “Paradise is under the feet of the mother.” 154

Alla-h (swt) states in the Noble Qur’an, in Surat al-Fa-tir, Verse 11:

“And no female conceives or delivers except with His knowledge.”

It is also narrated from the Prophet (s): “If it is decided that Alla-h (swt) will make a child be born, He will make him in whatever shape he likes.” 155

This shows us that child-bearing is a direct blessing from Alla-h (swt) and one that must be shown continuous gratitude for. Indeed, the presence of a child has been likened to the fruit of a tree, which brings a man and woman closer to each other.

As for mothers, Islam has made for them a beautiful world, in which everyone must respect and revere them. Alla-h (swt) recognizes and mentions the difficulties borne by mothers:

In Surat Luqma-n, Verse 14, He states:

“His mother carried him through weakness upon weakness.”

In Surat al-Ahqa-f, Verse 15, He states:

“His mother has carried him in travail, and bore him in travail.”

Indeed, the status of mothers is even higher than fathers as demonstrated by the following traditions:

A man came to the Prophet (s) and said to him, “O Messenger of Allah, to whom should I do good?” The Prophet (s) said, “Your mother.” (So) the man said, “And then to whom should I do good?” The Prophet (s) said, “Your mother.” (Then) the man said, “And then to whome should I do good?” The Prophet (s) said, “Your mother.” (Then) the man asked, “After that, to whome should I do good?” The Prophet (s) said, “To your father.” 156

It is also narrated that the Prophet (s) was asked, “Which of the parents have a higher status?” The Prophet (s) replied, “The one who for nine months kept you between her two sides (stomach), and then brought you into this world and gave you milk from her breasts.” 157

There are many traditions about the signifance of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, some of which will be narrated below. However, it should be kept in mind that these go side by side with the responsibilities that should be carried out to the best of one’s abilities. These responsibilities are naturally present when one has the intention of reaching high stations of Akhla-q and nearness to Alla-h (swt) and desires to work towards this virtuous goal. (These will be discussed in more detail in the next section)

a. It is narrated from the Prophet (s): “The reward of a woman, from the time of pregnancy until birth and breastfeeding, is the same as the reward of one on the path of Alla-h (swt), and if a woman leaves this world during that time because of the hardship and pains of birth, she has the reward of a martyr (shahid).” 158

b. It is narrated from Ima-m as-Sa-diq (as): “Any time a woman leaves this world because of labour pains, on the Day of Judgement, Alla-h (swt) will raise her from the grave pure and without an account (of sins), because such a woman has given her life due to the hardship and pain of labour .” 159

c. It is also narrated from Ima-m as-Sa-diq (as): “Every time a woman becomes pregnant, during the whole period of pregnancy she has the status of one who fasts, one who worships during the night, and one who fights for Alla-h (swt) with her life and possessions. And when she is giving birth, Alla-h (swt) grants her so much reward that nobody knows its limit because of its greatness. And when she is giving milk to her child, for every suck of the child, Alla-h (swt) gives her the reward of freeing a slave from the children of Isma-’i-l, and when the period of breastfeeding the child is finished, one of the great angels of Alla-h (swt) taps her side and says: “Start your deeds afresh, for Alla-h (swt) has forgiven all your minor sins.” 160

d. At the time of the Prophet (s), a man was doing tawaf (of the Noble Ka‘bah) while carrying his mother on his shoulders. When he saw the Prophet (s), he asked, “By doing this, have I repaid the rights of my mother?” To this the Prophet (s) replied, “No, you haven’t even repaid one of her cries during the time of giving birth.” 161

e. A man came to the Prophet (s) and asked, “I have an old mother who because of old age is not able to move. I carry her on my shoulder and put bites of food in her mouth and clean her. Have I repaid her rights?” To this the Prophet (s) replied, “No, because her stomach was your place, and during that entire time, she desired your life.” 162

f. It is narrated from Ima-m Zain al-’Abidi-n (as): “The right of your mother is that you know that she carried you where no one carries anyone. She gave to you of the fruit of her heart that which no one gives to anyone, and she protected you with all her organs. She did not care if she went hungry as long as you ate, if she was thirsty as long as you drank, if she was naked as long as you were clothed, if she was in the sun as long as you were in the shade. She gave up sleep for your sake. She protected you from heat and cold, all in order that you might belong to her. You will not be able to show her gratitude, unless God helps and gives you success.” 163

The above traditions should give hope to pregnant women, who inevitably will face one difficulty or another during this time. At times of difficulty, one should know that Alla-h (swt) has provided women with both the capability and the desire to bear children, for as Ima-m as-Sa-diq (as) narrates: “Alla-h (swt) has given every woman the patience of 10 men, and during pregnancy Alla-h (swt) grants her the ability of 10 more men.” 164

Adapted from the book: "From Marriage to Parenthood; The Heavenly Path" by: "Abbas and Shahin Merali"

Share this article

Comments 0

Your comment

Comment description