A legacy is what one leaves behind after one dies. Your friend might leave behind a valuable piece of art while her grandfather may have left a vintage car. Someone may bid farewell to a state-of-the-art-kitchen equivalent in value to many people’s entire home. On the other hand, someone might part with wardrobes full of designer apparel, branded scarves and fashionable footwear; the colours and variety of which could put an exclusive boutique to shame.

These are some of the mundane and finite legacies of this world. They are bound to perish one day. They will become outdated and unfashionable. The image that they lend to their owners is redeemed the day they die. The benefit that would accrue to those who possessed them discontinues and ceases the moment they part ways.

It is for this reason that Rasulullah (sallalahu ‘alaihi wasallam) exhorted us to leave behind such legacies that continue to benefit us even after we have passed on to the Aakhirah. Hence, his (sallalahu ‘alaihi wasallam) blessed words leave us in no doubt about the type of legacies we should aspire to leave behind. “When a man dies he leaves behind only three legacies; an act of charity whose benefit continues, beneficial knowledge, and pious children who make du‘aa for him.” (Saheeh Muslim #4223)

The pure and honourable wife of Nabi Ebrahim (‘alaihis salaam), Sayyidah Saarah (‘alaihas salaam) was blessed in her ripe old age with a son by the name of Nabi Ishaaq (‘alaihis salaam). He was destined to be blessed and inspired with divine knowledge and prophethood. Could any mother ask for anything better? 

What is more interesting is that he was to be the father of Nabi Ya’qoob (‘alaihis salaam) who was the primary ancestor of the entire nation of the Banu Israa-eel. From among the Banu Israa-eel came thousands of Ambiyaa (‘alaihimus salaam). Some of these illustrious Ambiyaa had received the divine books of Tauraah, Zaboor and Injeel. Sayyidah Saarah (‘alaihas salaam) was thus the Mother of a Nation.

Sayyidah Haajar (‘alaihas salaam) was the mother of the first born child of Nabi Ebrahim (‘alaihis salaam). His name was Nabi Ismaa‘eel (‘alaihis salaam). He was to be endowed with a tremendous degree of forbearance and tolerance. He was also in line to be appointed as a Nabi. Could any parent enjoy any greater boon? 

What added to the glory and honour was the fact that the greatest of the entire creation of Allah Ta‘ala was to appear in his progeny among the Arabs. He was destined to be such a personality who all the Ambiyaa (‘alaihimus salaam) would consider it their honour for him to be their leader.

It was none other than Sayyiduna Nabi Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). The prophethood of our Master, Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) would last till the end of time. His progeny would rule over the world. His followers, unlike the nations of the past, would be privileged to represent their Leader (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) in his mission. This was the greatest favour that Allah Ta‘ala would ever bestow on any parent. Thus, Sayyidah Haajar (‘alaihas salaam) was also the Mother of a Nation.

Sayyidah Saarah and Sayyidah Haajar (‘alaihimas salaam) were great personalities who left behind great legacies. Such personalities deserve to be honoured and followed. Study their exemplary lives and follow in their footsteps… you will also attain greatness as a mother, insha-Allah.

Such profound legacies are indeed a beauty and a joy forever.