The first Muslims lived in a desert, so they were very concerned about water conservation. The Noble Qur’an mentions the Arabic word for water (Ma’) 63 times. Imagine, each Prophet (may Allah bless them all) has an intimate story with water.
Prophet Adam (Peace be upon him) was made from water. Allah took a handful of the dust of the earth and mixed into it the colors, white, black, yellow and red. That is the reason why men are born different colors. When Allah mixed the dust with water, it turned into potter's clay that makes a sound. It was fermented and had a smell. Iblis passed by, wondering what was going to be made of that clay. From the clay Allah created Adam. He molded his form with His own hands and blew His spirit into him. Adam's body quivered as life was imbued into it. “Verily His Command, when He intends a thing is only that He says to it, "BE!" and it is!” (Qur’an, Surah Yasin, 36:82).
Allah the Almighty declared:
“Verily the likeness of Jesus, in Allah's Sight is the likeness of Adam, He created him from the dust then He said to him. “Be!" -- and he was.” (Qur’an, Surah Al-‘Imran, 3:59).
Prophet Ayoub (Peace be upon him) was cured by water.
Almighty Allah also instructed: "Remember Our slave Job, when he invoked His Lord saying: "Verily! Satan has touched me with distress (by losing my health) and torment (by losing my wealth)!
*Allah said to him: “Strike the ground with your foot: This is a spring of water to wash in and cool and a refreshing drink.
*And We gave him back his family, and along with them the like thereof as a Mercy from Us, and a reminder for those who understand.” (Qur’an Surah Saad, 38:41-43)
Prophet Ismail (Peace be upon him), son of Prophet Ibrahim (Peace be upon him) is linked to the holy Zamzam spring. Ibn Abbas narrated: "The first lady to use a girdle was the mother of Isma'il. She used a girdle so that she might hide her tracks from Sarah (by dragging it). Ibrahim brought her and her son Isma'il while she was suckling him to a place near the Kaba under a tree on the spot of Zamzam at the highest place in the mosque. During those days there was nobody in Mecca, nor was there any water so he made them sit over there and placed near them a leather bag containing some dates and a small water skin containing some water and set out homeward.”
Ibn Abbas's narration continued; "Isma'il's mother went on suckling Isma'il and drinking from the water (she had) When the water in the water skin had been used up, she became thirsty and her child also became thirsty, She started looking at him (Isma'il) tossing in agony. She left him, for she could not endure looking at him, and found that the mountain of As-Safa was the nearest mountain to her on that land. She too on it and started looking at the valley keenly so that she might see somebody, but she could not see anybody. Then she descended for As Safa and when she reached the valley, she tucked up her robe and ran in the valley like a person in distress and trouble till she crossed the valley and reached the mountain of Al Marwa. There she stood and started looking expecting to see somebody, but she could not see anybody. She repeated that running between Safa and Marwa seven times."
The prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said: “This is the source of the tradition of the Sa'y (rituals of the Hajj, pilgrimage) the going of people between them (As-Safa and Al-Marwa).”
When she reached Al Marwa (for the last time) she heard a voice and she asked herself to be quiet and listened attentively. She heard the voice again and said: "O whoever you maybe! You have made me hear your voice; have you got something to help me?" And behold! She saw an angel at the place of Zamzam, digging the earth with his heel (or his wing) till water flowed from that place. She started to make something like a basin around it, using her hand in this way, and started filling her water skin with water with her hands and the water was flowing out water she had scooped some of it.
She lived in that way till some people from the tribe of Jurhum or a family from Jurhum passed by her and her child as they (the Jurhum people) were coming through the way of Kaba. They landed in the lower part of Mecca where they saw a bird that had the habit of flying around water and not leaving it. They said: "this bird must be flying around water, though we know that there is no water in this valley." They sent one or two messengers who discovered the source of water and returned to inform them of the water. So they all came towards the water. Isma'il's mother was sitting near the water. They asked her: "Do you allow us to stay with you?" She replied: "Yes, but you will have no right to possess the water." They agreed to that. Isma'il's mother was pleased with the whole situation, as she used to love to enjoy the company of the people, so they settled there, and later on they sent for their families who came and settled with them so that some families became permanent residents there. The child (Isma'il) grew up and learned Arabic from them and (his virtues) caused them to love and admire him as he grew up and when he reached the age of puberty they made him marry a woman from amongst them.
When the Prophet Musa (Peace be upon him) had attained the age of a few months, his mother got made a very tight box. She put a blanket in the box. She lifted her affectionate son and kissed him again and again. She put him in the box with tears in her eyes. Her heart was beating violently. She pushed the box into the water when it was still dark. The box moved slowly on the surface of the water. His sister watched the box at a distance but the mother went back home wailing and sobbing. She was full of anxiety due to the separation of her beloved baby.
Prophet Musa (Peace be upon him) meets his future wives at a well:
“My father invites you so that he may give you the reward of your having watered for us." (Surah Al-Qasas, 28:25)
Prophet Musa (Peace be upon him) parts the waters of the Red Sea by the will of Allah. It is a miracle to reward the believing Jews.
One season came there was hardly any rain. It overtook the people with draughts and diminution of fruit. There was an acute shortage of water and food. The people began to die of starvation.
The Prophet Musa (Peace be upon him) prayed to Allah and He provided them with eatables. The Holy Qur'an states:
"And when Musa prayed for drink for his people, We said: Smite with your staff the rock, and there gushed out therefrom twelve springs so that each tribe knew their drinking place: Eat and drink of that which Allah has provided and do not act corruptly making mischief in the earth." (Surah Al-Baqarah, 2: 60)
Almighty Allah narrated the story of Prophet Nuh (Peace be upon him): “So it was till then there came Our Command and the oven gushed forth (water like fountains from the earth). We said: ‘Embark therein, of each kind two (male and female), and your family, except him against whom the Word has already gone forth, and those who believe." And none believed him except a few.’” (Qur’an, Surah Hud, 11:40)
Water rose from the cracks in the earth; rain poured from the sky in quantities never seen before on earth. Water continued pouring from the sky rising from the cracks; hour after hour the level rose.
The seas and waves invaded the land. The interior of the earth moved in a strange way, and the ocean floors lifted suddenly, flooding the dry land. The earth, for the first time was submerged. (Read more in verses, Surah Hud, 11:41-48)
Prophet Suleiman (Peace be upon him) and his people went on pilgrimage to the Holy Mosque in Makkah. After they had completed their hajj, they traveled to Yemen and arrived in the city of Sana. Solomon was impressed by their clever method of channeling water all over their cities. He was keen to build similar water systems in his own country but did not have enough springs. He set out to find the hoopoe bird, which could detect water under the ground.
Water is discussed literally hundreds of times in the hadith, the documented sayings and actions of the Prophet Muhammad. Water conservation was explicitly encouraged by the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, especially while washing even when taken from a large river.
‘By means of water, we give life to everything.’ (Surah Al-Anbiya’, 21:30)
Imagine, water is so precious, it is considered a fundamental human right. This is so that the caliph Uthman (may Allah be pleased with him) bought a well exclusively for the Muslims in Madinah, and it was free for all. The first priority is to quench the thirst of humans, the second one the animals, and in third the crops. Islamic law sets punishments for those who do harm by polluting the water.
Wow! That means a lot to me. I do not want to get sick ever again but I know, because of pollution, it is bound to happen again. Do you know, Sun, that there are some 350 chemicals in tap water, “including pesticides and nitrates leaching through the soil, hazardous contaminants from disposal landfills, chemical effluents and toxic wastes which pollute rivers, additives like aluminum sulphate and disinfectants like chlorine at the water treatment works, which create further toxic chemicals as by-product of disinfecting, lead from leaky pipework and, increasingly, parasites, not to mention fluoride. Instead, drink mineral water (from glass bottles), or install a reverse osmosis filter or under sink carbon filter"
To stay healthy each person needs about 55 gallons of water each day to clean, cook and drink. Some people do not get even that while other people consume ten times this amount every day.
(with slight changes)
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