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Sunday, 30 January 2005    
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The miracle of ZamZam

by S. H. A. Careem

Pilgrims who go to Makkah to perform Hajj usually carry home water from the ZamZam well for distribution among friends and relations. It's the well that provides the water which billions of people have thirstily drunk throughout history especially during the Hajj pilgrimage.

The ZamZam is located in Makkah, which is the heart of the Hajj pilgrimage. Standing only a few metres east of the Ka'aba, the well is 35 meters deep and topped by an elegant dome.

The history of ZamZam is very interesting. For a thousands of years, the water of ZamZam continued to flow, and millions of people throughout the history of Islam have drunk it ferventively. When Prophet Ibrahim left his wife Hajira and his son Ismail at the Ka'aba, he made his famous supplication: "O Our Lord! I have made some of my offspring to dwell in a valley without cultivation, by the Sacred house: In order, O our Lord that they may establish regular prayer.

So fill the hearts of some among men with love towards them, and feed them with fruits; so that they may give thanks" - Quran 14:37.

Allah accepted his Dua after Hajira had a hard time locating water in the neighbourhood of the safa and the Marwa. Water poured from under the feet of the child Ismail. Hajira tried not to lose the water by making a circle of mud around it. The appearance of the ZamZam began the settlement of the Makkah valley, where the descendants of Ismail populated the area.

One of the miracles of ZamZam water is its ability to satisfy both thirst and hunger. One of the Companions of the Prophet said that before Islam, the water was called 'shabbaa'ah' or satisfying. It was filling and helped them nourish their families. More recently, in the last few decades, samples of ZamZam water have been collected by scientists and they have found certain peculiarities that make the water healthier, like a higher level of calcium.

Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) said it has healing effects. This is why pilgrims to Makkah to this day collect it in bottles, to bring back for relatives and friends back home who are ill.

It is also reported also that the Prophet rubbed the gums of his two grandchildren - Hassan and Hussain - with dates and ZamZam. It was also reported that the Prophet used to carry the water of ZamZam in pitchers and water skins back to Madinnah.

He used to sprinkle it over the sick and make them drink it.

In some Hadith, it has been reported that the water of ZamZam has healing effects. In one Hadith it is said: Narrated by Jabir that the Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) said: "Water of ZamZam is good for whatever purpose it has been drunk. In another Hadith the Prophet said "Water of ZamZam is a healer of every disease. Muslims throughout the world do believe that the water is blessed and accordingly it is considered as one of the best gift to be offered.

Four senior experts of Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission have found the water of ZamZam well to be scientifically superior to tap or solar pump water. The experts have analysed and tested samples of water from ZamZam and from tap and solar pumps.

It was found that the ZamZam water has a curative effect.

Alkaline in nature, the ZamZam water can neutralise excess hydrochloric acid formed in the stomach and reduces heartburn.

Iodide, sulphate and nitrate contents are also much higher in the ZamZam water. Supply of iodide through ZamZam may sufficiently fulfil the requirement of iodide for the thyroid organ of a body. The research was carried out jointly by M. A. Khan, A. K. M. Sheriff, K. M. Idris and M. Alamgir.

It was revealed that contents of macro-nutrients like magnesium, sodium and potassium were manifold higher in ZamZam water than in tap and solar pump water.

The scientists said all the data indicated that ZamZam water had much more nutritive values than ordinary underground water.

The hardness of ZamZam water is four times that of tap and solar pump water but it is within the acceptable limit set by the WHO, the researchers found.

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