Zam Zam

The Zam Zam well and its blessed water

Zam Zam water from Mekkah is especially pure and blessed.

Zam-Zam well is in Mekkah, it is very near to the black building called the Kaaba, where the Muslims go to perform their Hajj or Pilgrimage. They also turn toward this building from every side of the world for their five daily prayers. Compass to find the directions towards Kaaba can be found in Islamic Prayer times apps in phones. When millions of Muslims go for their Hajj, this well Zam-Zam provides for their drinking water. The water of this well is especially pure and Muslims consider this well as a miracle and its water as blessed water. Here is the story behind this well Zam-Zam, it is an intriguing story – according to Islamic belief.


Muslims believe that Kaaba was built originally by the first man Adam (AS). Over the years it was diminished, but the spot remained blessed. It is said, there is a House similar to the Kaaba above the seventh heaven, where 70,000 new angels perform their Hajj daily before leaving for their duty and they never return to that house again. When Adam (AS) first met Eve on earth after being lost for years and looking for each other, they met in the planes of Arafat in Mekkah and began their life together. God sent a shadow of the house from the 7th heaven in that spot and Adam built the first Kaaba. Adam and Eve settled there. Years Later Prophet Abraham (AS), who was one of God’s favorite prophets, rebuilt the Kaaba.

Prophet Abraham (AS)'s tests were great. He lived a very long life. His first wife, Sara, was still barren when they were in their 80s according to some narrations, but of course, we do not know about her age at that time for sure. In the meantime, when they were captured by a tyrant king, there was another captive woman named Hagar. She was very beautiful, and she was stolen or captured from another kingdom. But her piety saved her from the tyrant king, every time he tried to go near her something happened and he could never go near her, the king gave up and thought that she was bewitched, he gave her to Abraham (AS). Abraham (AS) married Hagar and Hagar gave birth to Abraham (AS)’s first born son Ishmael (AS). On a side note, about ten years later the angels brought good tidings to Sara and Abraham (AS) that Sara would have a righteous son also, Sara could not believe that at that age she was going to have a child, but that is how God willed. Sara was an extremely beautiful lady. Abraham (AS) and Sara’s son Isaac (AS)’s story is fascinating, there would be four generations of prophets after Abraham (AS). Jesus (AS) was born from that lineage from Sara and Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) was born from the lineage from Hagar. And by the way, marrying more than once was a very common practice for men in the old ages. All men did it, it was not thought of as anything bad during that time. But the Holy Quran changed that, and of course, people to this day, do not interpret what the Quran really says about this correctly. Maybe people from the west will translate and interpret what the Quran says more correctly, God willing. I think it is just a matter of time that people would see what the Quran truly says, God willing. But this is another topic all together. So, let us come back to the story of Zam-Zam in Mekkah.

As Abraham (AS) was overjoyed to have a child with Hagar, God instructed him to take them to Mekkah and to leave them there in that desolate valley of Mekkah. So, he did! And what a great test it was for him (AS). As he was leaving Hagar and their infant child Ishmael (AS) behind, his heart was broken and Hagar was running and following his horse and asking him why was he leaving, but he could not talk, finally Hagar asked if this was what God had asked him to do? He said yes, after that Hagar did not say anything. It was a great test for all of them. Today our hearts tremble from reading these stories.

Hagar was left alone with the infant child. Baby Ismael (AS) was crying of thrust, she was looking for water frantically. There were two hills called the Shafa and the Marwa, she ran from one hill to the other seven times desperately looking for water, but in vain, she could not find any water, but when she came back to her son, she found that a stream of water had started from baby Ishmael (AS)’s heels striking the earth! What an amazing miracle! So, that is the well Zam-Zam that we see today! Muslims today imitate Hagar during their Pilgrimage, they run or walk fast seven times between these two mountains, it is now a part of the Pilgrimage rituals.

Fast forwarding several centuries…

7th Century Mekkah:

Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) was from a very famous tribe called the Bani Quraish. The Bani Quraish had several sub-tribes, Prophet Muhammad was from the sub-tribe called Bani Hashim of Bani Quraish. Prophet Muhammad (SAWS)’s grandfather Abdul Muttalib was the chief of Bani Hashim. Abdul Muttalib was a very righteous leader. The well Zam-Zam was lost and hidden during that time, everyone knew about this well, but they did not know where it was hidden. Abdul Muttalib had a dream about the hidden Zam-Zam well for three consecutive nights and finally he found the well Zam-Zam! It was a big discovery that placed Bani Hashim tribe’s status above the other tribes. All of this was happening just a few years before Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) was born. So, there was an atmosphere that was building up at that time in the town of 7th Century Mekkah and the Jews and the Christians, who were living there, were expecting the coming of the next prophet mentioned in their books! Of course, this notion is believed by the Muslims according to the traditions and of course, each religion has their own stories. There were other miracles that took place also before Prophet Muhammad (SAWS)’s birth, so there was an anticipation amongst the people, they knew that the arrival of the mentioned prophet was near. The other miracles included the incident of the elephants that were brought to destroy the Kaaba but they could not come forward, and instead, a clay rain destroyed the elephants, people witnessed this incident from the nearby hills and the remains of the elephants reminded people of the incident for many years after. So, these were not just small incidents that happened, these incidents were very big. These miracles were witnessed by the hundreds and thousands of people, the Arabs took pride in telling these stores.

Mekkah was famous for businesses and trades at that time since the time of Byzantine. As the water routes were no longer safe form the pirates, this land route became famous for the caravans and trade took place there. The Kaaba and the Zam-Zam well made Mekkah the center for the trading businesses. Mekkah was like the Wall Street of that time. Merchants would come from everywhere to trade.

As these stories from the distant past seem so ancient and almost unreal to us today, our miracles today are the things that we can see and touch, such as the Holy Quran and the well Zam-Zam!

Zam-Zam Well in this 21st Century:

All those stories form the past seem surreal now, but in the end, we keep our faith. The miracles of our time are a few and if we see something that connects us to the history then we appreciate it. The fact that this small well gives out so much water for centuries after centuries is a miracle! There are no moss and algae that grow inside of the Zam-Zam well and the water remains pure. So, the miracles of our time are there, we just either do not know it or do not realize it.

Zam-Zam well has since been providing water to the people. Muslims drink this water during their Pilgrimage to Mekkah and they bring some home with them, especially packaged of course. Oftentimes, Muslims keep Zam-Zam water in their fridges and drink on special occasions, such as, during Ramadan at the break of fast known as the Iftar, of course, most of the time mixing it with other water.

I recently learned that a scientist in Japan proved that a little bit of Zam-Zam water can purify a big amount of water! Amazing! But despite that proof, it is a miracle that this well has been supplying water to the millions of people for thousands of years! the Zam-Zam water is especially pure and blessed.

These stories from the past just captivate us, don't they? Thanks for reading!