Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) Is Given To A Foster Mother

Prophet Muhammad (SAW) Is Given To A Foster Mother

“There has certainly come to you a Messenger from among yourselves. Grievous to him is what you suffer; [HE is] concerned over you and to the believers is kind and merciful.” (Quran, 9:128)

Prophet Muhammad Story Part 1 – Events That Took Place Before Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) Was Born

Prophet Muhammad Story Part 2 – Events That Took Place When Prophet Muhammad (SAW) Was Born

Story of Prophet Muhammad – Part 3: Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) Is Given To A Foster Mother

The best of the creations was born and filled the world with peace and light that continues to date.

Hazrat Aminah R.A was peaceful and jubilant witnessing the miraculous birth of her beloved son and the people of Makkah were extremely excited and joyous.

Hazrat Amina R.A suckled her glorious newborn baby for around a week and then the beloved Prophet SAW was suckled and nourished by His foster mothers.

A foster mother is a woman who breastfeeds, looks after, or brings up a child or children as a mother, in place of the biological mother. In Islam, the foster mother and the foster sisters are mahram relations to a man.

Swaybah (also Sobia) was a female Sahabah and the first foster mother of the Islamic prophet Muḥammad.

The name of her meaning is “Deserving of ALLAH’s reward”. She is also known as Thuwaybah al-Islamiah.

Swayba was the servant of Abu Lahab. And, she was freed by Abu Lahab when she informed him that his brother’s wife Aminah had given birth to a son Muhammad.

Later, Prophet Muhammad SAW was nursed by Bibi Halima.

Arabs had a custom of sending their newborns to the women of Quraysh in villages away from their homes. The weather of Makkah was not favorable for the healthy upbringing of the children. The villages had a clean and fresh environment and a rich language so the Arabs would hand over their children to the care of foster mothers who used to breastfeed the baby and take care of them till the weaning period under healthier conditions. The time spent in the village would result in the child becoming healthier and enriched in his language of Arabic dialect appropriately. And in return, they were given generous gifts by their parents.

The story of Bibi Halima holds very remarkable importance in Islamic history and is very interesting.

It was the time of severe drought in the homeland of Sad’s sons and such a condition had never occurred till then. The whole tribal community of Bani Saad suffered miserably during this drought and famine. They had nothing left to eat and their cattle became weak with no milk.

The tribeswomen of Bani Saad traveled with their families to Macca to find a child they can nourish and earn their livelihood in return.

Bibi Halima was among the tribe heading toward Macca in need of a child to be fostered. She and her husband were riding a she-camel who was extremely weak and could barely move. It was a long journey and she had her newborn baby and she could not feed her due to lack of breastmilk. Their she-camel had no milk either.

Bibi Halima reached late in Macca than her fellow people due to her weak camel. All the other women except Bibi Halima took all the babies from rich families. Whenever Prophet SAW was offered to them,they refused to foster fearing that since He is an orphan, they will not get great gifts for nursing.

When Bibi Halima and her husband reached Macca there was no child left except for Muhammad SAW. Both of them were sad as all of their fellow beings got babies from wealthy families and they had no options left.

This pious mother Bibi Halima, who now was sad and discouraged was oblivious of the plan that Divine fate had planned for her, was distraught and in despair as she searched the streets of Mecca for a suitable kid.

Wandering in the streets of Macca, she encountered an old man who was Abdulmuttalib, the grandfather of beloved Prophet Muhammad SAW.

Abdulmuttalib, after enquiring about Halima told her: Oh, Halima! I have an orphaned child next to me. I offered him to the women of the Sons of Sa’d but they did not accept him. Come and be the wet nurse of this child. Maybe you will attain prosperity, wealth, and fortune for taking care of him”.

Halima was initially skeptical after receiving this offer. She didn’t want to go back without a foster child, though. She overcame her nervousness because of this and accepted the offer coming from within. However, she was hesitant to share her response without first consulting and getting her husband’s approval. After telling her husband everything, she went back to her husband right away and stated, “I was unable to find a child to nourish. I do not like leaving without anything. I’m going to adopt that orphan, by God.

Her husband agreed to this and said: “There is no harm in taking him. Perhaps God will endow us with prosperity and blessings thanks to him.

Bibi Halima went to take The master of the universe to foster Him and the moment she looked at the beautiful baby wrapped in white fabric, she was amazed and mesmerized seeing this beautiful child. All her distress disappeared the moment she took the radiant baby in her arms.

Halima and her husband took Prophet Muhammad SAW and left Makkah, and on their way home they began to experience various blessings throughout their journey.

  • She could breastfeed Prophet Muhammad SAW and her son despite being weak. Her breasts that had no milk suddenly were full of milk enough to feed both the babies as soon as Prophet Muhammad SAW suckled it.
  • When her husband tried to milk their camel, He was surprised to witness that the weak and sluggish camel was looking healthy and was full of milk so they were able to sate their hunger.
  • That was the night when both Bibi Halima and her husband had a peaceful night with their stomach full and good sleep.
  • On their journey back home, Harith(husband of Bibi Halima) said in amazement: “Oh Halima, know that you have taken a very holy and auspicious child!” Halima affirmed her husband’s statement: “By God, I hope he is”.
  • While riding their camel back home, they passed and left all their fellows behind this time leaving them surprised about the speed their camel got.

Indeed they were blessed exceptionaly as she was carrying the master of the universe with her.

Bibi Halima narrates about the miraculous things that happened after taking the orphan child with them:

When we arrived at our tents, the area there was the most desolate I have ever seen on Allah’s earth. But ever since we came here with this radiant child in our home, my flock would return to me every evening full of food and milk. When others had no milk to drink, we milked them and drank from them, and our neighbors would tell their shepherds to graze their flocks where my shepherd grazes them. We continued to enjoy this growth and this bounty from Allah until the baby was two years old and I weaned him. However, their flocks continued to return home hungry and yielding no milk, while mine returned well-fed and yielding lots of milk.

Later the land of Bani Saad was saved from drought and famine by the presence of this auspicious orphan child Prophet Muhammad SAW.

ALLAHUAKBAR! This was an orphan child, to whom no one was ready to foster and He brought such blessing in the lives of Harith and Bibi Halima that nobody could believe.

When the time of returning the foster child arrived, Bibi Halima turned extremely sad and her heart was sinking by the thought of the separation from the radiant and beloved child whom she loved more than her own son.

As promised she was forced to deliver Him because she had no other option, and she did so. They traveled to Mecca with the beloved Muhammad (PBUH) and gave Him to His mother Amina RA amid tears of compassion and heartbreak.

Halima made the following offer with the utmost sincerity at that very time as if an inspiration had just entered her heart:

“Would you kindly let my son stay with me for a little while longer? He might come into contact with the Meccan disease of plague, which is another thing that I fear.

Mother Amina agreed to this sincere offer and So the Prophet (SAW) stayed with Halimah (RA) until he was around three years old.

Ibn Sa’d, Tabaqat
Belâzurî, Ensab
Ibn Hisham, Sirah
Tabari, Tarikh
Badiuzzaman Said Nursî, İşaratü’l-İ’caz
See M. Hamdi Yazır, Hak Dini Kur’an Dili

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