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Mubahala literally means “mutual imprecation, curse” (e.g. “may God’s curse over the one of us who is wrong, who lies”), and it implies swearing a conditional curse (e.g. “may God’s punishment hit me, may I be cursed if...”) and a purifying oath.

In fact, the term indicates: 1. spontaneously swearing a curse in order to strengthen an assertion or to find the truth; 2. a kind of ordeal, invoked for the same purpose, between disputing individuals or parties.

Verse[edit | edit source]

Verse 61 of sura Al 'Imran refers to this event:

فَمَنْ حَاجَّکَ فِیهِ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَکَ مِنَ الْعِلْمِ فَقُلْ تَعَالَوْا نَدْعُ أَبْنَاءَنَا وَأَبْنَاءَکُمْ وَنِسَاءَنَا وَنِسَاءَکُمْ وَأَنْفُسَنَا وَأَنْفُسَکُمْ ثُمَّ نَبْتَهِلْ فَنَجْعَلْ لَعْنَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَى الْکَاذِبِینَ

‘Should anyone argue with you concerning him (Jesus), after the knowledge that has come to you, say, 'Come! Let us call our sons and your sons, our women and your women, our souls and your souls, then let us pray earnestly and call down Allah's curse upon the liars.'

Story[edit | edit source]

The Qur'anic exegesists and scholars say that this noble verse was revealed when the Christians of the city of Najran agreed with the Messenger of Allah to pray to Allah to destroy the party which stuck to falsehood. As agreed, and on time, the Holy Prophet went out to the place chosen for the contest. He carried Imam Hussain and took Imam Hassan by the hand. Fatima followed behind while Imam Ali walked in their wake. "Say 'Amen' at the end of my prayer," the Holy Prophet told them. But, upon seeing those faces filled with piety and grandeur, the Christians stopped short of entering the contest. They recognized the Prophet's authority, and paid the tribute.[1]

The noble verse called Hassan and Hussain "our sons," mentioned the Prophet Muhammad, and referred to Ali as "ourselves" and Fatima as "our women." She symbolizes the whole of womankind in this verse.

Source[edit | edit source]

Reference[edit | edit source]

  1. Fadha'il al-Khmasah min al-Sihah al-Sittah (Merits of the Five in the Six Authentic Books of Traditions), vol. 1, p.244. It refers to the great books which confirm this narrative. Among them are: Tafsir al-Zamakhsahri (Qur'anic Exgesis by al-Zamakhshari), Sahih Muslim, Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Al-Durr al-Manthoor (The Scattered Pearls), by al-Suyooti, al-Fakhr al-Razi, and al-Tirmidhi.