According to Arabian customs, the elder of the house would name a child just born. Hence when Janabe Fatema (s.a.) requested Imam Ali (a.s.) to name the child, he (a.s.) replied that,

“This child can be named only by your honorable father, Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.w), when he returns from his journey.”

On returning from his travel, the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w), as was his practice, descended directly at the house of Janabe Fatima (s.a). Imam Ali (a.s) presented the child to the Seal of the Messengers (s.a.w.w) and entreated him to name the child. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w) replied,

“O Ali! All of your children are my children. However, Allah, the Most High and the Almighty, will name this child. This is the object of His will.”

As if to answer this request, Jibrail (a.s.) descended and declared,

‘Allah, the Almighty, has named this child Zainab. This very name was written in Lauhe Mahfooz’.  

Source: Namuna-e-Sabr by Akbar Asadi

‘Zainab’ refers to an ‘adornment of the father’. Janabe Zainab (s.a) was indeed an adornment for her father and she has safeguarded the virtue of her name. The lionhearted lady through the event of Karbala capitulated the names of  Imam Ali (a.s) and Imam Husain Ibne Ali (a.s) to the farthest reaches of the earth and hoisted the flag of courage and eloquence to remain till the end of time. These personalities manifested their power to transform the blazing heat of noon to the gentleness of dawn. These personages give indications of their miraculous moral traits right from their birth. There is a halo of divine secrets surrounding their existence and they give precedence to divine satisfaction throughout their lives of trials and tribulations.

Janabe Zainab (s.a) is an illuminated light from among such personalities. The divine responsibility for the continuity of Islam has become embodied in the personality of Janabe Zainab (s.a). If the martyrdom of Imam Husain (a.s) was preparation from Allah’s side and was a reason for its survival, it should be kept in mind that the golden seal of Janabe Zainab’s (s.a) imprisonment has ensured the continuity of the Finality of Messengership. Without Janabe Zainab(s.a), the message of preparation would be devoid of this strong link. For this reason God had treasured Janabe Zainab (s.a.) for Karbala. Even after historians sold themselves to the wealthy rulers, there would be no spark that would succeed in erasing the incident of Karbala. It is an undeniable fact that Karbala is the name of a divine mission. It was in Karbala that the satanic forces were hurtling towards a common cause i.e. the destruction of Islam. On the other hand, we had the divine leaders – the Ahlebayt (a.s.w.s) who were taking every step after careful evaluation so as to nullify the satanic forces. They showed no laziness and were vigorous in completing their mission and struggle to safeguard the Shariat of Mohammad (s.a.w.a.). In the past, the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) had  ntroduced Imam Husain (a.s.) to his nation on numerous occasions and from all aspects, even to the extent of predicting his martyrdom. Thus, Abdullah Ibne Umar warned Imam Husain (a.s) on the eve of his departure from Medina and predicted  his martyrdom, ‘I have heard it from the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w).’ Everyone was aware of the impending martyrdom of Imam Husain (a.s). The mention of Janabe Zainab (s.a.) is also made in this context with the description of the pivotal role after the great martyrdom.

Everyone was aware of the impending martyrdom of Imam Husain (a.s). The mention of Janabe Zainab (s.a.) is also made in this context with the description of the pivotal role after the great martyrdom.

May Allah grant us taufiq to be an adornment for our parents and for our Aimma (a.s.w.s). May Allah count us all among the servants and followers of Imam Al-Mahdi (a.t.f.s).