Volume 3, Book 40, Number 556 :
Narrated by Ibn ‘Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “May Allah be merciful to the mother of Ishmael! If she had left the water of Zam-Zam (fountain) as it was, (without constructing a basin for keeping the water), (or said, “If she had not taken handfuls of its water”), it would have been a flowing stream. Jurhum (an Arab tribe) came and asked her, ‘May we settle at your dwelling?’ She said, ‘Yes, but you have no right to possess the water.’ They agreed.”
Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) narrated the story of Haajar, the wife of Ibraaheem and the mother of his son Ismaa’eel. He said:
Ibraaheem brought her and her son Ismaa’eel while she was suckling him, to a place near the Ka’bah under a tree on the spot of Zamzam, at the highest place in the mosque. During those days there was nobody in Makkah, nor was there any water. So he made them sit over there and placed near them a leather bag containing some dates, and a small water-skin containing some water, and set out homeward. Ismaa’eel’s mother followed him saying, “O Ibraaheem! Where are you going, leaving us in this valley where there is no person whose company we may enjoy, nor is there anything (to enjoy)?” She repeated that to him many times, but he did not look back at her. Then she asked him, “Has Allah ordered you to do this?” He said, “Yes.” She said, “Then He will not neglect us,” and returned while Ibraaheem went on his way. When he reached al-Thaniyyah, where they could not see him, he faced the Ka’bah, and raising both hands, prayed to Allaah in the following words:
“O our Lord! I have made some of my offspring to dwell in an uncultivable valley by Your Sacred House (the Ka‘bah at Makkah) in order, O our Lord, that they may perform As‑Salaah (Iqaamat‑as‑Salaah). So fill some hearts among men with love towards them, and (O Allaah) provide them with fruits so that they may give thanks”[Ibraaheem 14:37 – interpretation of the meaning]
Ismaa’eel’s mother went on suckling Ismaa’eel and drinking from the water (she had). When the water in the water-skin had all been used up, she became thirsty and her child also became thirsty. She started looking at him (i.e. Ismaa’eel) tossing in agony (or he said: kicking with his heels). She left him, for she could not endure looking at him, and found that the mountain of al-Safa was the nearest mountain to her on that land. She stood on it and started looking at the valley keenly so that she might see somebody, but she could not see anybody. Then she descended from al-Safa and when she reached the valley, she tucked up her robe and ran in the valley like a person in distress and trouble, till she crossed the valley and reached al-Marwa where she stood and started looking, expecting to see somebody, but she could not see anybody. She repeated that (running between al-Safa and al-Marwa) seven times.
Ibn ‘Abbaas said: the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “This is the source of the tradition of the walking between them (i.e. al-Safa and al-Marwa). When she reached al-Marwa (for the last time) she heard a voice and she asked herself to be quiet and listened attentively. She heard the voice again and said, “O (whoever you may be)! You have made me hear your voice; have you got something to help me?” And she saw an angel at the place of Zamzam, digging the earth with his heel (or his wing), till water flowed from that place. She started to make something like a basin around it, using her hand in this way, and started filling her water-skin with water with her hands, and the water started flowing out after she had scooped some of it.”
Ibn ‘Abbaas said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) added, “May Allah bestow Mercy on Ismaa’eel’s mother! Had she left the Zamzam alone (flowing without trying to control it) (or had she not scooped from that water) (to fill her water-skin), Zamzam would have been a stream flowing on the surface of the earth.” The Prophet further added, “Then she drank (water) and suckled her child. The angel said to her, ‘Don’t be afraid of being neglected, for this is the House of Allah which will be built by this boy and his father, and Allah never neglects His people.’ The House (i.e. Ka’bah) at that time was on a high place resembling a hillock, and when torrents came, they flowed to its right and left. She lived in that way till some people from the tribe of Jurhum or a family from Jurhum passed by her and her child, as they (i.e. the Jurhum people) were coming through the way of Kada’. They landed in the lower part of Makkah where they saw a bird that had the habit of flying around water and not leaving it. They said, ‘This bird must be flying around water, though we know that there is no water in this valley.’ They sent one or two messengers who discovered the source of water, and returned to inform them of the water. So, they all came (towards the water).”
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) added, “Ismaa’eel’s mother was sitting near the water. They asked her, ‘Do you allow us to stay with you?’ She replied, ‘Yes, but you will have no right to possess the water.’ They agreed to that.” Ibn ‘Abbaas said: the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) further said, “Ismaa’eel’s mother was pleased with the whole situation as she used to love to enjoy the company of the people. So, they settled there, and later on they sent for their families who came and settled with them so that some families became permanent residents there. The child (i.e. Ismaa’eel) grew up and learnt Arabic from them and (his virtues) caused them to love and admire him as he grew up, and when he reached the age of puberty they made him marry a woman from amongst them.
After Ismaa’eel’s mother had died, Ibraaheem came after Ismaa’eel’s marriage in order to see his family that he had left before…
Then Ibraaheem came back later on. He saw Ismaa’eel under a tree near Zam-zam, sharpening his arrows. When he saw Ibraaheem, he stood up to welcome him, and they greeted each other as a father does with his son and a son does with his father. Ibraaheem said, ‘O Ismaa’eel! Allah has given me an order.’ Ismaa’eel said, ‘Do what your Lord has ordered you to do.’ Ibraaheem asked, ‘Will you help me?’ Ismaa’eel said, ‘I will help you.’ Ibraaheem said, ‘Allah has ordered me to build a house here,’ pointing to a hillock higher than the land surrounding it.” The Prophet added, “Then they raised the foundations of the House (i.e. the Ka’bah). Ismaa’eel brought the stones and Ibraaheem was building, and when the walls became high, Ismaa’eel brought this stone and put it for Ibraaheem who stood on it and carried on building, while Ismaa’eel was handing him the stones, and both of them were saying, ‘Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us. Verily, You are the All-Hearer, the All-Knower’ [al-Baqarah 2:127 – interpretation of the meaning]. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) added, “Then both of them went on building and going round the Ka’ba saying: ‘Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us. Verily, You are the All-Hearer, the All-Knower’ [al-Baqarah 2:127 – interpretation of the meaning] . Saheeh al-Bukhaari, 3113
Taken from IslamQA
Narrated Ibn Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu):
I gave Zam-zam water to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) and he drank it while standing. ‘Asia (a sub-narrator) said that ‘Ikrima (radiallaahu `anhu) took the oath that on that day the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) had not been standing but riding a camel.
How to solve this mystery? Did the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) drink Zamzam while sitting or standing? What’s sunnah and what’s not? Read on..
The fuqaha’ have mentioned the etiquette that is mustahabb (recommended) when drinking Zamzam water, such as facing the Ka’bah, saying Bismillah, pausing to take a breath three times, drinking one’s fill, praising Allaah after one finishes, and sitting whilst drinking it, as one should do when drinking other kinds of drinks. As regards the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him), who said, “I gave the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) Zamzam water to drink whilst he was standing,” (reported by al-Bukhaari, 3/492), it is taken to mean that it is permissible to drink whilst standing, and the disapproval of doing so is understood to mean that it is makrooh. The scholars also recommended that the person who drinks Zamzam water should sprinkle some of it on his head, face and chest, make lots of du’aa’ when drinking it, and to drink it for a purpose that will benefit him in this world or the next, because of the hadeeth in which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The water of Zamzam is for whatever purpose it is drunk for.” (Reported by Ibn Maajah, 2/1018; see Al-Maqaasid al-Hasanah by al-Sakhaawi, p. 359).
Taken from IslamQA.
Other virtues of Zamzam here.
Narrated Ibn Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu):
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) came to the drinking place and asked for water. Al-Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “O Fadl (radiallaahu `anhu)! Go to your mother and bring water from her for Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam).” Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Give me water to drink.” Al-Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “O Allahs Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)! The people put their hands in it.” Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) again said, ‘Give me water to drink. So, he drank from that water and then went to the Zam-zam (well) and there the people were offering water to the others and working at it (drawing water from the well). The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) then said to them, “Carry on! You are doing a good deed.” Then he said, “Were I not afraid that other people would compete with you (in drawing water from Zam-zam), I would certainly take the rope and put it over this (i.e. his shoulder) (to draw water).” On saying that the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) pointed to his shoulder.
Imaam Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Zamzam water is the best and noblest of all waters, the highest in status, the dearest to people, the most precious and valuable to them. It was dug by Jibreel and is the water with which Allaah quenched the thirst of Ismaa’eel.
It was reported in Saheeh Muslim that the Prophet SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Abu Dharr, who had stayed near the Ka’bah and its coverings for forty days and nights with no food or drink other than (Zamzam): “How long have you been here?” Abu Dharr said: “I have been here for thirty days and nights.” The Prophet SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “Who has been feeding you?” He said, “I have had nothing but Zamzam water, and I have gotten so fat that I have folds of fat on my stomach. I do not feel any of the tiredness or weakness of hunger and I have not become thin.” The Prophet SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Verily, it is blessed, it is food that nourishes.” (Narrated by Imaam Muslim, 2473).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Myself and others tried seeking healing with Zamzam water and saw wondrous things. I sought healing with it from a number of illnesses, and I was healed by the permission of Allaah. I saw someone who nourished himself with it for a number of days, half a month or more, and he did not feel hunger; he performed Tawaaf along with the other people just as they did. And he told me that he consumed nothing but Zamzam water for forty days and he had the strength to have intercourse with his wife, to fast and to perform Tawaaf numerous times.
Zaad al-Ma’aad, 4/319, 320.
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah preserve him) said:
So you should have the intention of what you want to gain by drinking this water. He should drink his fill, i.e., fill his stomach with it until it is filled to the ribs, because this water is good. A hadeeth has been narrated concerning this: the difference between the believers and the hypocrites is drinking one’s fill of Zamzam water. (Narrated by Ibn Maajah in al-Manaasik, 1017; al-Haakim, 1/472).
Al-Boosairi said: this is a saheeh isnaad; its men are mawthooqoon [trustworthy].
This is because Zamzam water is not sweet; it is somewhat salty, and the believer only drinks this somewhat salty water out of faith, believing that there is barakah (blessing) in it. So when he drinks his fill of it, this is a sign of faith.
(Sharh al-Mumti’, 7/377, 378, 379).
Perhaps Allaah did not make it sweet so that people would not forget that the meaning of drinking it is an act of worship. Whatever the case, its taste is fine and there is nothing wrong with it. We ask Allaah to quench our thirst from the Cistern (al-Hawd) of His Prophet on the Day of the greatest thirst. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad.
Taken from IslamQA.