The story of Bismillah

The Story of ‘Bismillah’ and the hairdresser of Pharaoh’s daughter and her children.

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “On the night on which I was taken on the Night Journey (Isra’), a beautiful fragrance came to me. I said: O Jibreel, what is this beautiful fragrance? He said: This is the fragrance of the hairdresser of Pharaoh’s daughter and her children.

I said: What is their story? He said: Whilst she was combing the hair of Pharaoh’s daughter one day, the iron comb fell from her hand and she said, ‘Bismillaah (in the name of Allah).’ The daughter of Pharaoh said: ‘My father?’ She said: ‘No. My Lord and the Lord of your father is Allah.’ She said: ‘I will tell him about that.’ She said: ‘Yes.’ So she told him and he summoned her and said: ‘O So and so, do you have a Lord other than me?’ She said: ‘Yes, my Lord and your Lord is Allah.’

He ordered that a baqarah(lit. “cow”) made of copper be heated up, then he ordered that she and her children be thrown into it. She said: ‘I have a request to make of you.’ He said: ‘What is your request?’ She said: ‘I would like my bones and my children’s bones to be gathered together in one cloth and buried.’ He said: ‘This will be done for you.’ He ordered that her children be thrown into it in front of her, one by one, until they came to the last one who was an infant boy who was still being breastfed. It was as if she wavered because of him, but he said: ‘O mother, go ahead, for the punishment of this world is easier to bear than the punishment of the hereafter.’ So she went ahead.”

Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: Four infants spoke: ‘Eesa ibn Maryam (peace be upon him), the companion of Jurayj, the witness of Yoosuf and the son of the hairdresser of Pharaoh’s daughter.Narrated by Imam Ahmad in al-Musnad (1/309), al-Tabaraani (12280), Ibn Hibbaan (2903) and al-Haakim (2/496).