Al-hizanah is the right of a mother to the custody of her children. “The mother is of all persons the best entitled to the custody of her infant children during the connubial relationship as well as after its dissolution.” (Fataqa-i-‘Alamgiri, vol. i, p 728.)
When the children are no longer dependent on the mother’s care, the father has a right to educate and take charge of them, and is entitled to the guardianship of their person in preference to the mother. Among the Hanafis, the mother is entitled to the custody of her daughter until she arrives at puberty; but according to the other three Sunni sects, the custody continues until she is married.
There is difference of opinion as to the extent of the period of the mother’s custody over her male children. The Hanafia limit it to the child’s seventh year, but the Shafi’is and Malakis allow the boy the option of remaining under his mother’s guardianship until he has arrived at puberty. Among the Shi’ahs, the mother is entitled to the custody of her children until they are weaned, a period limited to two years. After the child is weaned, its custody, if a male, devolves on the father, it a female, on the mother. The mother’s custody of the girl continues to the seventh year.
The right of hizanah is lost by the mother if she is married to a stranger, or if she mis- conducts herself, or if she changes her domicile so as to prevent the father or tutor from exercising the necessary supervision over the child.
Apostasy is also a bar to the exercise of the right of bizanah. A woman, consequently, who apostatizes from Islam, whether before or after the right vests in her, is disentitled from exercising or claiming the right of hizanah in respect to a Muslim child.
The custody of illegitimate children appertains exclusively to the mother and her relations. (Personal Law of Muslims by Syud Amir Ali, p. 214.) [GUARDIANSHIP.]
HOLY SPIRIT Arabic Ruhu ‘l-Quds روح القدص. The Holy Spirit is mentioned three times in the Qur’an. In the Suratu ‘n-Nahl (XVIth, 104), as the inspiring agent of the Qur’an : “Say, The Holy Spirit brought it down from thy Lord in truth.” And twice in the Suraty ‘l-Baqarah (IInd, 81 and 254), as the divine power which aided the Lord Jesus: “and We strengthened him by the Holy Spirit” (in both verses).
The Jalalan, al-Baizawi, and the Muslim commentators in general, say this Holy Spirit was the angel Gabriel who sanctified Jesus, and constantly aided Him, and who also brought the Qur’an down from heaven and revealed it to Muhammad.
For a further consideration of the subject, see SPIRIT.
Based on Hughes, Dictionary of Islam