26-07-07

Maryam,werd vekozen boven alle vrouwen

 

MARYAM :

AN EXEMPLARY

MUSLIM WOMAN

 

 

 

 

And when the angels said: “ Maryam,

Allah has chosen you and purified you.

He has chosen you over all other women. ”

(Qur’an, 3:42)

 

 

The Nature of Her Society

 

According to historical sources, Allah honored Maryam, who lived approximately two millennia ago, with the birth of Prophet 'Isa (as). She was one of the chosen women on Earth as well as in the Hereafter. Born in Roman-occupied Palestine, she was a Jewess and lived in the Jewish community.

Idolatry was Rome's state religion. The Jews, once a nation preferred by Allah "over all other beings" (Surat al-Baqara: 47), had altered His religion, adopted false beliefs, rebelled against Allah's commands, and were no longer grateful for His gifts to them. Some of them even murdered the Prophets sent to them by the grace of Allah, because the Jews did not like the commands that these exalted men conveyed. The Qur'an reveals their transgressions:

 

We made a covenant with the tribe of Israel and sent Messengers to them. Each time a Messenger came to them with something their lower selves did not desire, they denied some and they murdered others. (Surat al-Ma'ida: 70)

 

Maryam was born at a chaotic time, when the Jews' only hope was their expected Messiah (savior). Unknown to her, Allah had already determined to choose and raise her for this holy duty. She was central to the Israelites' expectations, for she would give birth to Prophet 'Isa (as), whom He compliments in the following terms: "His name is the Messiah, 'Isa, son of Maryam, of high esteem in this world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near. He will speak to people in the cradle and when fully grown, and will be one of the believers" (Surah Al 'Imran: 45-46).

Allah chose Maryam to represent morality and true religion among her people, who had left the true religion and embraced superstitions and idle speculation. Allah reveals many aspects of her life, among them her birth and family, the birth of Prophet 'Isa (as), her superior character, and how she resisted her society's slanders and accusations.

 

Allah Exalts 'Imran's Family

Allah reveals that "Allah chose Adam and Nuh, and the family of Ibrahim and the family of 'Imran, over all other beings—descendants one of the other..." (Surah Al 'Imran: 33-34). In other words, 'Imran's family descended from the Prophets Adam (as), Nuh (as), and Ibrahim (as), and they were exalted people. One of these chosen people was Maryam, whose family sincerely believed in Allah, respected the limits that He has established for humanity, and always sought and trusted Him.

 

Maryam's Birth

When `Imran's wife, a sincere believer, found out that she was pregnant with Maryam, she immediately prayed to Allah. She praised Him and promised that she would dedicate her child to Him. When she gave birth to a girl, she named her Maryam, which means to abide, in other words someone who incessantly worships Allah. Allah reveals her prayer in the following verse:

 

Remember when the wife of 'Imran said: "My Lord, I have vowed to You whatever is in my womb, to be devoted [to Your service]. Please accept it from me. You are the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing." When she gave birth, she said: "My Lord! I have given birth to a girl"—and Allah knew very well what she had given birth to, male and female are not the same—"and I have named her Maryam and placed her and her children in Your safekeeping from Satan, the accursed." (Surah Al 'Imran: 35-36)

 

The Arabic word muharreren, translated here as devoted [to Your service], means "preoccupied only with the Hereafter and having no interest in the world, in the service of Allah's temple, worshipping in great devotion, one whose worship is not tainted by worldly aims."1 

True freedom can be attained only by serving Allah, surrendering to Him, and freeing oneself from all service to any other beings or values. This is what 'Imran's wife prayed for when dedicating Maryam to Allah, for she wished her daughter to be someone who served only Allah and who did not seek her people's or society's acceptance.

Right after Maryam's birth, her mother turned toward Allah, sought His good pleasure, and asked Him to protect Maryam, as well as her children, from Satan's evil. Allah accepted this wholehearted prayer "and made her [Maryam] grow in health and beauty" (Surah Al 'Imran: 37). In other words, Maryam received the best upbringing and the most superior character.

Maryam's mother's wholehearted faith in Allah, acceptance of only Allah as her mentor, constant turning toward Him, and her genuine surrender to Him are very important examples upon which all believers should reflect.

 

Allah Commissions Prophet Zakariyya (as) with

Educating Maryam

Allah gave Prophet Zakariyya (as) sincere faith and exalted him, and guided him to the righteous path. Allah compliments him and points out his devotion, his proper fear and respect of Him, and his superior character:

 

And Zakariyya, Yahya, 'Isa, and Ilyas. All of them were among the believers. And Isma'il, al-Yasa', Yunus, and Lut. All of them We favored over all beings. And some of their forebears, descendants, and brothers; We chose them and guided them to a straight path. (Surat al An'am: 85-87)

 

The Qur'an reveals that Allah made Prophet Zakariyya (as) responsible for educating Maryam. He fulfilled this trust, witnessed the many miracles in her life, and noticed that she was favored over all other people. He saw how Allah's grace supported her and met all of her needs. For example:

And Zakariyya became her guardian. Every time Zakariyya visited her in the sanctuary, he found food with her. He asked: "Maryam, how did you come by this?" She said: "It is from Allah. Allah provides for whoever He wills without any reckoning." (Surah Al 'Imran: 37)

 

Maryam's answer to his question testifies to Allah's grace and providence.

 

Allah Preferred Maryam over All Other Women

Maryam was a most devout Muslim who genuinely dedicated herself to our Lord, praised His name, and turned toward Him in prayer constantly throughout her life. Just as Allah chose 'Imran's family above all others, He chose Maryam and ensured that she would be educated in the best manner, purified from all wickedness, and preferred above all other women. Allah relates her superiority:

 

And when the angels said: "Maryam, Allah has chosen you and purified you. He has chosen you over all other women. Maryam, obey your Lord and prostrate and bow with those who bow." (Surah Al 'Imran: 42-43)

 

Maryam's Exemplary Chastity

Maryam, like the rest of her family, was known among her people for her devotion to Allah as well as her religiosity, chastity, and sincerity. Allah speaks of her as someone obedient to Him.

 

And Maryam, the daughter of 'Imran, who guarded her chastity—We breathed Our Spirit into her. She confirmed the Words of her Lord and His Book, and was one of the obedient. (Surat at-Tahrim: 12)

 

… and she who guarded her chastity. We breathed into her some of Our Spirit and made her and her son a Sign for all the worlds. (Surat al-Anbiya': 91)

 

MaryamMeets Jibril

Maryam experienced many miracles throughout her life. One of these was her meeting with Jibril. Once, when she left her family and society and went toward the east, she met Jibril, who appeared to her in the form of a well-built man:

 

Mention Maryam in the Book, how she withdrew from her people to an eastern place and concealed herself from them. Then We sent Our Spirit to her, and it took on for her the form of a handsome, well-built man. (Surah Maryam: 16-17)

 

Not knowing who this man was, she sought refuge with Allah and told him that she held Allah in the utmost fear and respect: "She said: 'I seek refuge from you with the All-Merciful, [leave me] if you have fear [and respect] of Allah'" (Surah Maryam: 18). Her words clearly demonstrate her complete trust in Allah,

 

as well as the importance she placed upon chastity and devotion to Allah. Her words not only expressed all of this, but also called upon this unknown man to have fear and respect of Allah.

Jibril introduced himself with the following words: "I am only your Lord's messenger [an angel] so that He can give you a pure boy" (Surah Maryam: 19). As the Qur'an recounts:

 

When the angels said: "Maryam, your Lord gives you good news of a Word from Him. His name is the Messiah, 'Isa, son of Maryam, of high esteem in this world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near." (Surah Al 'Imran: 45)

 

Maryam replied: "How can I have a boy when no man has touched me and I am not an unchaste woman?" (Surah Maryam: 20), thereby indicating her chastity. Jibril told her that:

 

He [Jibril] said: "It will be so." Allah creates whatever He wills. When He decides on something, He just says to it, "Be!" and it is. (Surah Al 'Imran: 47)

 

He said: "It will be so." Your Lord says: "That is easy for Me. It is so that We can make him a Sign for humanity and a mercy from Us. It is a matter already decreed." So she conceived him and withdrew with him to a distant place. (Surah Maryam: 21-22)

 

By Allah's will, Maryam became pregnant with Prophet 'Isa (as) and yet remained a virgin. Her pregnancy was independent of this world's usual cause-and-effect relationship. The circumstances of his conception were among the features of Prophet 'Isa's (as) miracles.

 

Maryam's Withdrawal

Allah reveals "So she conceived him and withdrew with him to a distant place" (Surah Maryam: 22). In this distant place to which she retreated, Allah supported her with His grace and protection and met all of her material and psychological needs during her pregnancy.

No doubt, Maryam withdrew from her society for many reasons. For example, Allah removed her from her people's criticism, for they could not understand her miraculous situation. This also enabled her to spend this period in a state of contentment and peace. Later on, by another miracle, Allah revealed her miraculous circumstances, refuted all of the accusations and slanders directed toward her, and restored her impeccable reputation.

 

Prophet `Isa's (as) Birth and Allah's Support of Maryam

Allah fully supported Maryam throughout her pregnancy. It is very difficult for a woman to give birth, a potentially life-threatening experience, all alone, without medical equipment or a midwife's assistance. Nevertheless, Maryam overcame all of these difficulties by placing her complete trust in Allah. Allah helped her with revelations while she was struggling toward a date tree in the full throes of labor pains. Allah told her not to grieve, that He had placed a stream at her feet, and that she should shake the date tree in order to get freshly ripe dates to eat. He also told her to drink and to delight her eyes. As a result, she gave birth in the best possible circumstances. Allah reveals her situation:


 

The pains of labor drove her to the trunk of a date-palm. She exclaimed: "Oh, if only I had died before this time and was something discarded and forgotten!" A voice called out to her from under her: "Do not grieve. Your Lord has placed a small stream at your feet. Shake the trunk of the palm toward you, and fresh, ripe dates will drop down to you. Eat and drink, and delight your eyes. If you should see anyone at all, just say: 'I have made a vow of abstinence to the All-Merciful, and [so] today I will not speak to any human being.'" (Surah Maryam: 23-26)

 

Allah's grace and protection was clearly visible in this situation. In fact, His advice to her has been confirmed by modern science. We now analyze this advice in some detail.

 

Do Not Grieve

As stated earlier, Maryam withdrew from her society so that she could be in a psychologically peaceful environment and away from the hurtful behavior of people who could not comprehend her miraculous situation.

Allah told her not to grieve and bestowed His grace and protection upon her. No doubt, there was much wisdom in this advice, just as there was in Maryam's withdrawal to a distant place. Muslims must not surrender to sadness; rather, they are to trust in Allah and feel the peace of mind that comes with knowing that Allah will always help them.

This attitude, which is required of all believers, has been confirmed by modern medicine, for doctors tell women, both during their pregnancy and while they are giving birth, to maintain a positive attitude and avoid any sadness and stress. His advice to delight her eyes means not to surrender to sadness and to enjoy the news of Allah's gift.

 

Eat Dates

Allah advised Maryam to eat freshly ripened dates. Today, such dates are considered to be food and medicine. Scientists now know that dates contain more than ten substances considered essential for the human body's well-being and continuing health.

Dates contain plenty of the easily digested and absorbed sugars that give the human body its energy for heat and movement. More importantly, these sugars are of the fructose type and not of the glucose type, which quickly raises the blood-sugar levels. Dates provide energy, help muscle tissues and nerve cells develop, and are especially beneficial for people weakened by illness or those suffering from exhaustion, because of their high caloric value. For example, 100 grams of dates contain 1.5 grams of protein and 50 grams of carbohydrates. In addition, their caloric value is 225 kcal. Fresh dates have a 60-65 percent sugar content and a 2 percent protein content.

Modern medical findings suggest that dates benefit women who are almost ready to give birth. Doctors now advise pregnant women to take fructose-containing foods on their due dates, for such foods provide energy used by the weakened body to revitalize itself, have a trigger effect on the milk hormones and thus help the woman's body produce milk, and also increase the volume of that milk.

This information reveals some of the wisdom inherent in Allah's advice to Maryam. Another matter worth reflecting upon is the little stream created by Allah and His advice for her to eat and drink. Now, scientists inform us that people can survive on dates and water for years, because they contain all of the necessary essentials for human life.2 In fact, one renowned expert on the subject, V. H. W. Dowson, suggests that one glass of milk and one date per day provides a person's daily nutritional requirements.3 

Dates contain various vitamins (e.g., A, beta-carotene, B1, B2, B3, and B6) and minerals, (e.g., sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, fiber, iron, sulphur, phosphorus, and chlorine) and are also rich in fiber, fats, and proteins. Some of the ensuing benefits are as follows:

A date's nutritional value is based on the balance between its minerals. During the prolonged period of morning sickness and the altering physiognomy, a shortage of potassium occurs and needs to be supplemented. This fruit's high potassium content is certainly welcome here, as its role in preserving the body's water levels.

Iron controls the red blood cells' synthesis of hemoglobin, which prevents anemia during pregnancy and also regulates the blood's RBC balance, which is so crucial for the baby's development. Due to its high iron content, one-and-a-half dates can meet the body's total iron requirement and thus prevent all complaints caused by a lack of iron.

Calcium and phosphorus are very important elements in developing and balancing the skeleton and the bone structures. Dates protect the body from anemia and weak bones, and thus reduce the risk of such illnesses with their high nutritional value and high phosphorus, calcium, and iron content.

Scientists point out that dates can reduce stress and tension levels. Research done at Berkeley University revealed that dates are rich in vitamin B1 (the "nerve vitamin") and magnesium (essential for muscle functions), both of which are essential for a strong nervous system. Magnesium is also very important for the kidneys, and two or three dates per day are enough to meet all of the human body's magnesium requirements.4 

Dates also contain folic acid (vitamin B9), which is essential for pregnant women, due to its important role in forming new blood cells, producing amino acids, and developing new cells. As a result, a pregnant woman needs double the usual daily amount of folic acid. If the body's folic acid levels fall below the required amount, bigger but less functional red blood cells are formed and anemia occurs.

Folic acid, which is crucial to developing the cell's genetic makeup and division, is the only substance that must be doubled during pregnancy. Dates are very rich in folic acid.

During pregnancy, a woman's daily vitamin A requirement increases to 800 ug. Dates are very rich in the foremost vitamin A: beta-carotene.5 

Most other fruits are protein-poor, but dates have good protein content.6 

Oxytocin is used in modern medicine to accelerate labor and is often referred as "rapid birth." It also increases the level of milk production following birth.7 

Our Prophet (saas) pointed out the benefits of dates in the following hadith: A family that has dates will not be hungry.8 This is a piece of very good advice.

All of our current information on dates reveals Allah's infinite wisdom and grace upon Maryam, who, inspired by Allah, satisfied all of her nutritional needs by eating dates and thereby eased her child's birth. (Allah knows best.)

17:54 Gepost door Assalamu aleykum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh in Algemeen | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

De commentaren zijn gesloten.