Let us consider some pertinent statements that Muhammad made about this practice. Narrated Salman bin Amir Ad-Dabbi: I heard Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) saying: “Aqiqa is to be offered for a (newly born) boy, so slaughter (an animal) for him, and relieve him of his suffering.”(Hadith No. 5472, Book of Aqiqa, Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 7). Muhammad made no mention of baby girls here. At the time of this statement, girls were not on his mind as being worthy of aqiqah.
But that was not always the case. Yusuf bin Mahak narrated that they entered upon Hafsah bint Abdur Rahman to ask her about Aqiqa. She informed them that Aishah (RA) had informed her that Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) ordered them that for a boy two sheep were sufficient, and for a girl one sheep.”(Hadith No. 1513, Chapters on Sacrifice, Jami’ At-Tirmidhi, Vol. 3). Here now Muhammad does think of baby girls, but believes that any aqiqah done on their behalf merits only half as many animals being slaughtered as that for baby boys.
Debate Question 2: Did the prophet of Islam regard the birth of a baby boy as being more significant than the birth of a baby girl?