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Islamic Birth Rites

19th January 2009
New born Baby

The baby should be given ghusl upon birth and the umbilical cord should be cut immediately.


It is narrated from Abu Raafi' (RadhiAllahuAnhu):
"I saw the Prophet give Adhan for the Prayer in the ear of al-Husayn ibn ‘Alee when his mother Fatimah (RA) gave birth to him." (Reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhee who declared it ‘hasan’ and by Shaikh al-Albanee in ‘al-Irwaa’).

New born child should hear the Zikr of Allah upon their arrival into this world. After the baby is born the Adhan should be said in the right ear and the Takbeer (Iqamah) should be said in the left ear by anyone who is able to say the adhan of the salah such as the father. This should be done as soon as possible.


When a child was born to one of the families of the Sahaba (the Companions of the Prophet) they would take it to the Prophet so that he would bless it, and apply the pulp of a date, chewed by him, to its palate.

Aisha (RA) narrates that "the people used to bring their newborn children to the Prophet and he would bless them and perform the tahneek"
(Sahih Muslim)

Tahneek is the process of chewing some food (usually dates) and gently rubbing it against the baby's upper jaw or palate so that the baby can suck or eat it.

There are many benefits of the tahneek, both medical and non-medical. Some of these were perceived by the scholars and many were not and there follows some of these points of wisdom:

1. In performing the tahneek, one is following the Sunnah of the beloved Messenger Muhammad (SAW), and a revival of his Sunnah which he used to perform with his Companions - and this is more than sufficient wisdom in itself.

2. It is, furthermore, a Prophetic miracle and protects the child from a danger which has only recently become apparent to the medical profession. This is that newborn babies may die if their blood sugar level is too low, and after the birth the baby’s nutrition from its mother is cut off, so his body turns to whatever he has stored up whilst he was in his mother’s womb - until his mother is able to breast feed him/her. It is at this time that the child’s organs are most active, so whatever stores it has may quickly be exhausted causing the blood sugar level to drop and resulting in danger. We, therefore, find that rubbing the child’s palate with a crushed date - which contains a large percentage of sugar - provides him/her with sugar which can pass into his system quickly and will be a protection for him/her from that deficiency should it occur. So how far above and free from any deficiency is Allah (SWT), the Most Wise?

3. The tahneek also exercises the muscles of the mouth and helps with the circulation of blood in the mouth - which is brought about by rubbing the date upon the palate, and by the movement of the jaws when he chews and licks - this also helps the baby to be able to suck and take the mother’s milk.

4. Furthermore, as is well-known, the date has a number of different benefits for health - so performing tahneek as done by the Messenger (SAW) - will produce a number of such benefits helping the body and health of the child.


The Aqiqah is a right (upon you). Sacrifice two compatible sheep for a boy and one for a girl. (Ahmad)

Every child is mortgaged by its Aqiqah. It should be slaughtered for him/her on their seventh day, the child's hair should be shaved, and he/she should be named. (Aby Dawud, Nasaai).

There is a common misconception that the aqiqah is actually a party organised by the family of the newborn after the meat has been cooked.
Aqiqah, however, is the actual sacrifice that is made when a child is born. The meat is then distributed to friends, family and the needy. Often families have a get-together when the meat is eaten. The sacrifice should take place on the baby's seventh day.

Burayday (RA) reported that the Propher (SAW) said:
The Aqiqah should be slaughtered on the seventh, the fourteenth, or the twenty first day. (Tabarani).

If the Aqiqah does not take place on this day, it may still be sacrificed on the fourteenth or the twenty first day.

Naming the newborn

Abdullah Bin Amr reported: The Prophet (SAW) commanded us to name a newborn on its seventh day...

Naming a child is an important decision.
Below are a few Islamic factors that should be considered.

* It is recommended to give the child a name indicating sevitude to Allah (SWT).
Indeed, the best and most beloved names to Allah are: Abdullah (servant of Allah) and Abd ur-Rahman (servant of the Most Merciful). (Muslim)

*It is recommended to name the child after one of the Prophets or Messengers, the most righteous of humanity.
This also used to be practised by the bBani Israel as the Prophet (SAW) informed us and approved us with his saying:
They used to name their children after the Prophets and the pious people who came before them. (Muslim)

* It is recommended to name the child after pious peopl in Islam and to teach them about them.
That way the child will Insha Allah grow up to love and respect them and follow their way and adopt their manners in righteousness and knowledge. Names such as names of the Khalifah, companions of the Prophets etc...

*It is recommended to give the child a name which has a good meaning.
Names which have meaning of chastity, piety, honesty and truth etc..

Shaving the head

Allah's Messenger (SAW) commanded His daughter to do this for her children: "O Fatimah, shave his head, and give charity equal to his hairs' weight in silver." (Ahmad)

After shaving the newborns head, Sadaqah is to be given which is equal in value to the weight of the hair in silver.

Khitaan - Circumcision

There are five qualities of Fitrah: Circumcision, shaving the pubic hair, trimming the moustache, clipping the nails and plucking the armpit hair. (Bukhari, Muslim).

Khitaan is the removal of the foreskin.
posted by ubuntu on 19th January 2009 - 13 comments


abdul raheem wrote on 3 Dec 2009
nice blog, very helpfull. alhamdulillaah.
Blogger's Reply:
ismail adebiyi wrote on 28 Jul 2010
I find this information very useful. And it is very good that the reference ahadith are included. Jazakumullahu Khayran.
Animashaun Yusuff wrote on 26 Nov 2010
very useful information.
Anonymous wrote on 28 Nov 2010
useful website thanks
Anonymous wrote on 28 Nov 2010
hi i couldn't find information on the Halah and Halam about the foods which uslims are allowed to eat and not to eat. but thanks.
Blogger's Reply:
Anonymous wrote on 28 Nov 2010
sorry i could find info i was looking for. but i thought the website was good and handy for other things.
Anonymous wrote on 28 Nov 2010
plz help mi find mi info bout halah and halam plz plz x x x
yusra wrote on 11 Jun 2012
thts really has help me alot in my islamic hmewrk ;) thnxx :)
USTADH ABUBAKRI WAHAB wrote on 18 Jun 2012
This particular websites and all the like have succeeded in handling down the true traditions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) to the entire Muslims that really seek knowledge. I pray that Almighty Allah count this work as an act of Ibaadah and reward the Mufti in manifold, Ameen.
ifrah.khan wrote on 31 Dec 2012
very usefull thanx
Trabiya wrote on 27 Apr 2015

I had kept my new born babys hair and umbellical cord wrapped in a tissue but few days back I trashed it in dustbin by mistake.
I am so guilty of what I did. What should I do please advice. ....
Blogger's Reply:
Ws. Give Sadaqah for the hair and it is advisable that you get this answered by a scholar.
Aminu Rabo wrote on 23 May 2015
very useful & helpful too
sam wrote on 29 May 2015
Salam alaik,
May i know the evidence/nas that supports the immediate cutting of the umbillical cord?

Blogger's Reply:
Ws, sorry I don't have this information. If I come across it I will let you know ia.
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