“And the heart of the mother of Musa (Moses) became empty [from every thought, except the thought of Musa (Moses)]. She was very near to disclose his (case, i.e. the child is her son), had We not strengthened her heart (with faith), so that she might remain as one of the believers.” (Al-Qasas 28:10)
This is one of my favourite Ayahs in Surah Al-Qasas where Allah (swt) talks about Musa’s (as) mother. I picked this Ayah because it is very close to my heart for many reasons.
At one time or another, all human beings will suffer emotionally traumatizing experiences. We are going to be hurt because of sickness or because of the pain that loved ones will cause us like the hurtful things we say or are said to us. Likewise, we are going to encounter traumatic experiences in life, such as job loss, or even worse. Many people in the world are living in really horrific situations, which we can’t even imagine.
This particular Ayah to me is an Ayah of great hope because when people get scared and emotionally damaged, they feel like they are not going to be able to recover and move on with life again. Musa’s mother had the colossal task of taking and putting her baby in the water – something that no mother can imagine herself doing! She had two options: watch her child being slaughtered by soldiers before her eyes, or take her child and put him in a basket, which has not been tested for water proof navigation, and throw him in the river.
When she threw him into the water, she did so by Allah’s (swt) inspiration. She could not have made herself do it emotionally. Allah (swt) empowered her. He says that Musa’s mother’s heart became empty, due to the trauma of letting go of her child and watching him float away into the river, without any chance to access him anymore. She could not even know what happened to him; if he drowned or not, if an alligator got to him, if those horrible soldiers got him, if the basked flipped over… she knew nothing, so the worst thoughts may have been crossing her mind.
Allah (swt) says her heart was emptied out, fully devoid of emotions. You know when somebody hears traumatic news and totally freeze – they don’t blink, they are just quiet, they are emotionally paralyzed. That was the stage she had reached – she almost gave up her secret, she almost came out running and saying that it was her baby, but if she would have said that, he would have been killed.
Now, Allah (swt) says: “She was very near to disclose his (case, i.e. the child is her son), had We not strengthened her heart (with faith), so that she might remain as one of the believers.” Allah (swt) took her heart that was in flames and he calmed her heart down, and brought her back to a normal state – Allah (swt) Himself is describing that He did it, Subhan’Allah!
There are people who can never recover after being emotionally traumatized. Why not? Because Allah (swt) hasn’t strengthened their heart. Sometimes we as human beings do not have the ability to recover emotionally, but we are learning in this Ayah that Allah (swt) has the ability to let us heal and move on. You could say to yourself: “I don’t have the emotional capability of forgiving you.” But Allah says: “I’ll strengthen your heart and I’ll give you that ability.” You can say in your heart: “I’m too damaged by what happened, there’s no way I can move on with my life.” However, Iman, faith in Allah (swt), is enough for you to be able to move on with your life.
“Had We not strengthened her heart (with faith), so that she might remain as one of the believers.”
What mother can get over the trauma of putting her child in water and not being able to see him anymore? But Allah (swt) gave her such strength of heart that not only she got over it but she was also able to think clearly and send his sister after him. She would not have been able to think all that had Allah (swt) not intervened.
This shows that Allah (swt) will intervene into our emotional states. Musa’s mother was not a prophet – she was a believer just like any one of us. This means it is an opportunity for you and me, whatever emotional trauma we are going through, we should know that Allah (swt) can intervene and give you peace of mind, peace of heart, He can give tranquility to your heart again, whether it is going through anxiety, fear, grief, or anger. Allah (swt) can remove those scars entirely.
I pray that you are able to ask Allah (swt) to give you that firmness of heart, so you can be from those who truly believe and can live a healthy spiritual life and healthy emotional life. Ameen
Transcribed for Hiba by Faiza Rizwan – hiba’s representative and mother of four