The Prophet prescribed his daughter Fatima a prayer to recite in times of difficulty

tasbihOne of the most important female figures for the roles of women is Fatima, the daughter of Prophet Muhammad and his first wife Khadija. Born around 604, Fatima is known as al-Zahra (the Radiant), after which the Al-Azhar University was named by Imam al-Mu’izz, who founded it in 972.

Fatima is noted by several writers as the Prophet’s most beloved and most pious daughter, and the wife of his paternal cousin Ali, the first Imam of the Shi’as. The Fatimids also derive their name from the Prophet’s daughter.

Qadi al-Numan (d. 974), the Fatimid jurist and chief missionary, reported that the union of Fatima and Ali was divinely ordained to the Prophet through angel Gabriel. Al-Nu’man also reported a number of hadiths in which the Prophet named Fatima as ‘the foremost lady of the whole community of believers’ or ‘the first of the women of Paradise.’

Clay plate with calligraphic inscription "Ya Fatima al-Zahra." Image: Wikipedia
Clay plate with calligraphic inscription “Ya Fatima al-Zahra.” Image: Wikipedia

Fatima is also lauded as a pious intercessor. To this day her intermediation is sought by Twelver Shi’is, as shown at passion plays (ta’ziya) in praise of Fatima and her progeny.

Fatima has remained a reference figure throughout the Fatimid period (909-1171) and beyond. Her name, or her titles, are found in coins and other objects, and were reportedly mentioned in the blessings of the Ahl al-Bayt that were included in the khutba upon the Fatimid conquest of Egypt.

A rosary-like prayer known as Tasbih Fatima (Fatima’s glorification of God), is reported by Fatimid writers as consisting of three sections of thirty-three blessings or formulae, which, added to the shahada, invoke the name of God one hundred times, for which Allah will grant benefits equivalent to 1,000 good deeds.

The tasbih was given to Hazrat Fatima by the Prophet to help her in times of difficulty.

Extracts from “Women and the Fatimids in the World of Islam,” by Delia Cortese and Simonetts Calderini,  Edinburgh University Press, 2006

Compiled by Nimira Dewji

3 thoughts

  1. Thanks. Now I really understand the meaning of Tasbih which was given to Fatima by Prophet peace be upon him. That’s why we use Tasbih of 33 pearls or 100 pearls. This is very informative and have increased our knowledge. Thanks once again.


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