Chapter: Zam Zam Water
History of the well of holy zam zam
The holy well of the holy Makkah Muazzama, which had come into being and started flowing by rubbing of the holy tender feet of the Hadrat Ismail ala nabeeyina alaihis salaatu wasalaam during his infancy is known as the well of the holy zam zam. Seeing, drinking and pouring this water on the body is being considered a virtuous act and a cure for several diseases. This holy well is situated at the south side of Maqam Ibrahim (alaihis salaathu wassalaam).
After the return of Hadrat Ibrahim alaihis salaam to Syria, Hadrat Hajira Radhiallahuta’la anha ran out of the palm dates and water she had in her posession. Due to this her milk for the infant Ismail too dried up. She became restless and impatient. But her impatience was not for her own self but for her infant son crying restlessly for milk. There were two mountains nearby called “Safa and Marwah”. There could be streams sprouting out of the hills due to the miracles of the Almighty Allah. With this thinking Hadrat Hajira radhiallahuta’la anha, first went up to the Safa hills and had casted looks of gloom on the hill. When she could not find a drop of water there, she climbed up the Safa hill and looked around in search of water. On not seeing a drop of water, she came down and ran towards the hill of Marwah. She climbed Marwah too and searched for water around everywhere. Suddenly she remembers the child and come down to see him only crying incessantly. Hadrat Hajira, again and again ran up to Safa and then to Marwah continuously. When she completed 7 trips and came near her child, she wondered to see a stream of water coming out from where the child was striking his heels with hunger and thirst. Hadrat Hajira feared that the water may get spilled and lost here and there. Hence she was mounting a sort of mud barricades around the water, saying the water “zam zam, zam zam”, that is to say “stop, stop, stop, stop.” On raising the mound around the flowing water, the water stopped flowing out of control and that took a shape of a well, a source of zam zam. While describing the wellbeing of Hadrat Hajira, our beloved Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said:
”قَالَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: يَرْحَمُ اللَّهُ أُمَّ إِسْمَاعِيلَ لَوْ تَرَكَتْ زَمْزَمَ أَوْ قَالَ لَوْ لَمْ تَغْرِفْ مِنْ الْمَاءِ لَكَانَتْ عَيْنًا مَعِينًا
May Allah show mercy on the mother of Hadrat Ismail! Had she not erect a mound around the flowing water, just taking water by her hands and let that water flow freely, then that would have become a flowing stream. (Bukhari, Hadith 2368).
Because of the erected mound, the water did not flow out but confined to one place and became a well instead of a canal. There would have been a hikmah, a wisdom of Allahuta’la in this incident. And this was the first natural spring present at the Haram ka’bah.Muslims coming from throughout the world drink enough of this zam zam water.