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Hazrat Maryam AS



Hazrat Maryam (May Allah be pleased with her) is the mother of Prophet Jesus. Her father’s name was Imran, and her mother’s name was Hannah. She was born in Nazareth, a small town in Palestine (present-day Israel). The Romans had conquered Palestine before Hazrat Maryam was born. The birth of Hazrat Maryam was a significant turning point in history because it marked a moment when something unknown to the world was about to happen. Hazrat Maryam (May Allah be pleased with her) is one of history's most respected and revered women. The Holy Qur’an names an entire chapter after her. The Holy Qur’an presents her as a model for all true believers. She has been mentioned by the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) as one of the four most honorable women in the world.


Before Hazrat Maryam was born, her mother (Hannah) promised God that she would dedicate her child’s life to the service of the Jewish temple.

Allah says in the Holy Qur’an:

˹Remember˺ when the wife of Imran said, “My Lord! I dedicate what is in my womb entirely to Your service, so accept it from me. You alone are truly the All-Hearing, All-Knowing.” (Al-Imran:35)

As only male children were accepted in the service of the temple, Hannah was quite perplexed when she gave birth to a girl. She said, “My Lord! I have given birth to a girl.”


The Holy Qur’an states that Allah knew best what she had given birth to. This implied that the girl, Mary, was not an ordinary girl. God had blessed her with qualities that made her an exceptional and extraordinary child, even better than the boy Hannah had hoped for.

Under the Mosaic Law, a female could not serve God; however, Allah accepted Hannah’s commitment.

In the Holy Qur’an, it says:

“So her Lord accepted her graciously and blessed her with a pleasant upbringing—entrusting her to the care of Zakariyyah.” (Al-Imran:37)


As Hazrat Maryam’s father had passed away, Hazrat Zakariyyah became her legal guardian, and Hazrat Maryam was admitted to the service of God in the Jewish temple, headed by Hazrat Zakariyyah.


Even as a child, she dedicated her entire time to the worship of God. She would spend most of her time worshiping in her chamber. She was extremely intelligent and could understand the scriptures at a very young age.


Whenever Hazrat Zakariyyah (may Allah be pleased with him) visited her, he found her with provisions. When Hazrat Zakariyyah asked her where they had come from, she replied they were from Allah. Her response indicates the degree of her purity and reliance on Allah and her recognition that all of our sustenance comes from the Almighty. This is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an as:


So her Lord accepted her graciously and blessed her with a pleasant upbringing—entrusting her to the care of Zakariyyah. Whenever Zakariyyah visited her in the sanctuary, he found her supplied with provisions. He exclaimed, “O Mary! Where did this come from?” She replied, “It is from Allah. Surely Allah provides for whoever He wills without limit.” (Al-Imran:37)


This pious reply of Hazrat Maryam (may Allah be pleased with her) made a deep impression on the mind of Prophet Zakariyyah, and he prayed to God Almighty for a child as virtuous as Hazrat Maryam.


Time went by, and Hazrat Maryam continued serving in the temple. One day, while she was praying to God Almighty in seclusion, an angel appeared to her and conveyed the divine message that she would have a son. 


She wondered, “How can I have a son when no man has ever touched me, nor am I unchaste?” (Surah Maryam:20)

He replied, “So will it be! Your Lord says, ‘It is easy for Me. And so will We make him a sign for humanity and a mercy from Us.’ It is a matter already decreed.” (Surah Maryam:21)


Angels appeared to Hazrat Maryam in her dreams and gave her the glad tidings of a son who would be called the Messiah. She was told that he would be honored in this world and the next and granted nearness to God.


This situation would be unthinkable for someone who works and lives in the temple for the sake of God. This incident took place hundreds of years ago in an ultra-conservative period in none other than the Holy Land. Maryam automatically withdraws from the public and tries to conceal her pregnancy. She has no support from the community she so diligently served. Once it was time to give birth, the Qur’an tells us that she went to a remote place, and the contractions of labor were overwhelming. They drove her to grab onto the trunk of a palm tree as she called out in desperation, 

“Would that I had died before this and become a thing forgotten!”  (Surah Maryam: 23)

Not only was it the physical pain but also the emotional turmoil of her reputation being questioned that caused her anguish.


Hazrat Maryam (may Allah be pleased with her) eventually gives birth to the Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) and is commanded to vow silence. Maryam would have still been recovering from childbirth, but she carries the baby back to her town to face the wrath of her people. Although she knew that people would begin to blame her and she could be punished for allegedly having a baby out of wedlock, Maryam still obeys Allah.


Prophet Jesus (may Allah be pleased with him) was quite young when Hazrat Maryam decided to return to her town. When people learned of their return, they came out of their houses and surrounded Hazrat Maryam. They behaved rudely towards her and asked her many questions about her son. Hazrat Maryam (may Allah be pleased with her) was deeply hurt, but she did not say anything. Instead, she pointed towards Jesus. They said, “How can we talk to one who is merely a child in the cradle?” They considered him too young to give them a meaningful explanation. However, they were amazed at his reply:


“Then she returned to her people, carrying him. They said in shock˺, O Mary! You have certainly done a horrible thing!

O  sister of Aaron! Your father was not an indecent man, nor was your mother unchaste.”

So she pointed to the baby. They exclaimed, “How can we talk to someone who is an infant in the cradle?”

Jesus declared, “I am truly a servant of Allah. He has destined me to be given the Scripture and to be a Prophet.


He has made me a blessing wherever I go and bid me to establish prayer, give alms-tax as long as I live, and be kind to my mother. He has not made me arrogant or defiant. 

Peace be upon me the day I was born, the day I die, and the day I will be raised back to life!” (Surah Maryam: 27 to 33)

The word “carrying him” in the above verse means that Hazrat Maryam believed in Hazrat Jesus and helped him in his mission. She reflected on his religion in her person and silently started introducing it to her people.


The Holy Qur’an informs us: 

“And We made the son of Mary and his mother a sign and gave them refuge on high ground—a suitable place for rest with flowing water.” (Surah Al-Mu’minun: 50)

Hazrat Maryam has been mentioned in the Holy Qur’an in many instances. Allah has named an entire chapter in the Holy Qur’an (Surah Maryam) after her. The third chapter in the Qur’an is named after Hazrat Maryam’s father, Imran. In the Holy Qur’an, Prophet Jesus is called Isa ibn Maryam, meaning Jesus, the son of Mary.

She has been addressed as the chosen one:

And ˹remember˺ when the angels said, O Mary! Surely Allah has selected, purified, and chosen you over all women of the world. (Al-Imran:42)

She has been called the truthful in the Holy Qur’an:

“The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a Messenger; surely, Messengers like unto him had passed away before him. And his mother was a truthful woman. They both used to eat food. See how We explain the Signs for their good and how they are turned away.” (Al-Maaidah: 75)


The Qur’an gives two examples of true believers. The first Hazrat Asiyah, the wife of Pharaoh, and the second Hazrat Maryam. It states:

“And Allah sets forth an example for the believers: the wife of Pharaoh, who prayed, “My Lord! Build me a house in Paradise near You, deliver me from Pharaoh and his ˹evil˺ doing, and save me from the wrongdoing people.


There is also the example of Mary, the daughter of ’Imrân, who guarded her chastity, so We breathed into her ˹womb˺ through Our angel ˹Gabriel˺. She testified to the words of her Lord and His Scriptures and was one of the ˹sincerely˺ devout.” (Al-Tahrim: 11 and 12)


She signifies a true follower of a Prophet and those who have attained true submission to Allah. She has been set as an example for both men and women to follow.


The Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) on Hazrat Maryam said:

Hazrat Ali relates that the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “The best woman of her time was Mary, daughter of Imran, and the best woman of her time is Khadijah, daughter of Khuwaylid.”


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