Lady Zaynab (a.s.) In traditions
For her high position, Lady Zaynab (a.s.) was mentioned in a number of traditions ascribed to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) and the Ahl al-Bayt (a.s.). We have already referred to the Prophet’s saying that weeping for her is as same as weeping for her two brothers.
Shaykh Sulayman al-Hanafi in his famous book entitled Yanabi al-Mawaddah Section 58, records the following -we excerpt only the point of discussion:
Rabi’ah al-Sa’di reported: As I asked Huzayfah about a number of matters, he said, “Listen to this, understand it, and convey it to people. I have seen the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) and heard him with my ears when Al-Husain ibn Ali (a.s.) came to him on the minbar and he seated him on his shoulders and said:
O people! This is al-Husain (a.s.); his grandfather and grandmother are the best of people. His grandfather is the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) and master of Adam’s descendants... And this is al-Husain (a.s.) whose father, mother, brother, and sisters (a.s.) are the best of people... and his sisters are Zaynab and Ruqayyah... and his two sisters shall be in Paradise...[^81]
This prophetic saying is a clear-cut proof on the exceptional position of Lady Zaynab (a.s.) as she is added to the Prophet and the Imams and is regarded as the best of people.
Shaykh al-Saduq in his Ikmaal al-Deen wa Itmaam al-Ne’mah, reports the following, we excerpt only the point of discussion:
Ali ibn Mahziyar said that Abu al-Husain Muhammad ibn Ja’far al-Asadi said that Ahmad ibn Ibrahim said:
In the year 262 A.H, I visited [Lady] Hakimah daughter of Muhammad ibn Ali and sister of Imam al-Hasan al-Askari (a.s.), and asked her about the Religion... She then said, “This is what al-Husain ibn Ali (a.s.) had done when he appointed his sister Zaynab (a.s.) as his representative openly and hence any item of knowledge that was said byAli ibn al-Husain (a.s.) was ascribed to Zaynab (a.s.).
This is another proof on the high position of Lady Zaynab (a.s.) in the sight of Imam al-Husain (a.s.) as he appointed her to carry the weighty inheritance of Imamate.
Shaykh al-Mufid records the following narration:
During the Battle of the Camel, Aysha gathered children and bondmaids, gave them drums, and ordered them to chant some poetic verses against Imam Ali. When Umme Salamah, the Prophet’s widow, was informed about this, she decided to go there and reproach “Ayesha and the gathering women. Lady Zaynab (a.s.) asked to do this instead of Umme Salamah since she knew these women very well. Hence, she disguised herself and her bondmaids and left towards these children and women. When she reached there, she noticed their vainness and futility. She then showed her reality to Ayesha and said, “It is not strange from you and your companion (i.e. Hafsah) to help each other against Amir al-Mu’minin (a.s.), since it was both of you who helped each other against his brother, the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.), until you were reproached by the Holy Qur’an.”[^82] Ayesha felt ashamed and excused that these women had done this out of their ignorance.
This tradition gives a clear idea about the sagacity and wisdom of Lady Zaynab (a.s.) who participated in the defense of Islam with her father and brothers.
The following tradition is recorded in al-Tiraz al-Muzahhab as quoted from Nasikh al-Tawarikh:
One of the miracles of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) was that he used to put his tongue in the mouths of Fatimah’s suckling children and they were satiated. Zaynab and UmmeKulsum were engaged in this virtue besides al-Hasan (a.s.) and al-Husain (a.s.). This is in fact a sufficient honor for Lady Zaynab (a.s.).
The following is recorded inBihar al-Anwar, as quoted fromMa‘ani al-Akhbar:
Muhammad ibn Imran asked Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (a.s.) whether it is true that the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) had said that because Fatimah guarded her chastity, Allah (s.w.t.) shall forbid Hell to take her progeny. Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) said,“Yet, it is. Her progeny are al-Hasan, al-Husain, Zaynab, and UmmeKulsum (a.s.).”
The previous are only small excerpts of the traditions in which Lady Zaynab (a.s.) is mentioned. It has been already mentioned that she herself was a trustworthy narrator of prophetic traditions and incidents that she lived or heard from her mother.
Traditions Of Lady Zaynab (a.s.)
The most famous narration of Lady Zaynab (a.s.) was her mother’s address of Fadak.
Ibn Abu al-Hadid, in Shark Nahj al-Balaghah, reports the address from a series of narrators all relate to Lady Zaynab (a.s.) in more than one way of narration. Abdullah ibn Abbas also relates the address to Lady Zaynab (a.s.).[^83]
She also narrated her father’s last words to her two brothers and his instructions how to wash his dead body and where to bury him.
She also narrated the story of Imam al-Husain’s (a.s.) birth, as quoted from her mother (a.s.).[^84]
She also narrated the story of the Heavenly Food that Lady Fatemah al-Zahra (a.s.) prayed to the Lord to give her so as to serve it to her father.[^85]
She also narrated the famous story of her mother’s prayer to the Believers saying, “Neighbors should be preceded to the family members.”[^86]
She also narrated to her nephew, Imam Zayn al-Aabideen (a.s.), the words of the Holy Prophet (a.s.) about what they would face after him.[^87] In the same manner, she narrated her father’s confirmation of Umme Ayman’s narration in the same respect.