A man came home from work late, tired and irritated, to find his 5 year old son waiting for him at the door.
“Daddy, may I ask you a question?”
“Yeah, sure, what is it?” replied the man.
“Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?”
“That’s none of your business! What makes you ask such a thing?” the man said angrily.
“I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?” pleaded the little boy.
“If you must know, I make $20.00 an hour.”
“Oh, ” the little boy replied, head bowed. Looking up, he said, “Daddy, may I borrow $10.00 please?”
The father was furious. “If the only reason you want to know how much money I make is just so you can borrow some to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you’re being so selfish. I work long, hard hours everyday and don’t have time for such childish games.”
The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The man sat down and started to get even madder about the little boy’s questioning. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money. After an hour or so , the man had calmed down, and started to think he may have been a little hard on his son. May be there was something he really needed to buy with that $10.00 and he really didn’t ask for money very often. The man went to the door of the little boy’s room and opened the door. “Are you asleep son?” he asked.
“No daddy, I’m awake,” replied the boy.
“I’ve been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier,” said the man. “It’s been a long day and I took my aggravation out on you. Here’s that $10.00 you asked for.”
The little boy sat straight up, beaming. “Oh, thank you daddy!” he yelled. Then, reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some more crumpled up bills. The man, seeing that the boy already had money, started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, then looked up at the man.
“Why did you want more money if you already had some?” the father grumbled.
“Because I didn’t have enough, but now I do,” the little boy replied.
“Daddy, I have $20.00 now… Can I buy an hour of your time?”
By Dr. Aisha Hamdan
Have you had a meaningful conversation together? Do you know what your child accomplished today, how he may be feeling, whether or not he has any concerns? Does your child know that you care about him?
In Islam, the ties of kinship and family are very strong and something that will always be present throughout our lifetime. There are very serious consequences for someone who decides to break these ties. Allah, subhanahu wa ta’ala, says,”Then, is it to be expected of you, if you were put in authority, that you will do mischief in the land, and break your ties of kith and kin? Such are the men whom Allah has cursed for He has made them deaf and blinded their sight.” [Qur’an 47:22-23]. The Prophet, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam, said,”Whoever severs the bonds of kinship will not enter Paradise.” (Bukhari and Muslim).
A major component of our familial ties is communication. In fact, without communication there would be little connection between people. Living together in the same household with limited, or even hostile, interaction would not fit the criteria for maintaining the bonds of kinship. To develop meaningful relationships within our families we need to know how to communicate effectively and sincerely with each other. A large part of this involves skills and principles that can be learned through practice and sincere effort. The following is a guide to strengthen these ties that bind.
1) Active Listening.
You may be surprised to discover that the most important aspect of effective communication is listening. This means that the listener pays full attention to the speaker and attempts to understand what that person is saying and feeling. The listener should suspend judgment, show interest, and respect what is being said. He or she may then restate the content and feelings to demonstrate that sincerity is present. The Prophet, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam, always gave his full attention to anyone that he conversed with, even his enemies and those with whom he disagreed. When he addressed his companions, they listened intently and attached importance to everything he said.
2) Level of Understanding.
Parents should always keep in mind the age and level of understanding of their child and should speak with him accordingly. The Prophet, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam, said “Speak to the people keeping in view their level of understanding. Would you like to see them think of what you tell them from Allah and His Messenger as lies?” (Bukhari) This is important so that the child will be able to comprehend what is said, the expectations of the parents will not go beyond the capacity of the child and lead to problems, and difficulties will not be placed upon the child unnecessarily. This is particularly pertinent for sensitive issues such as death, personal modesty issues, and adult responsibilities. There are various levels of complexity with each of these and the correct level needs to be chosen for each child. One way to ascertain this is by the type of questions that a child asks.
3) The Manners of a Mu’min.
A believer is someone who believes in Allah’s Message and follows the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam. In relationships then, a believer would demonstrate honesty, kindness, patience, self-restraint, fairness, trustworthiness, etc. He would avoid teasing, blaming, belittling, mocking, excessive and idle talk, and fault-finding. There are many Qur’anic verses and ahadeeth that give detailed descriptions of this topic such as: “Verily, Allah is with the patient.” [2: 153], “Speak fair to the people.” [2:83], “Kind words and covering of faults are better than charity followed by injury.” [2:263], “A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim. He does not wrong him, nor insult him nor humiliate him.” (Muslim), and “The thing which will make the majority of people enter Paradise is fear of Allah and good manners.” (Tirmithi) These principles should be applied in conversations with children and teenagers as well as adults. It is probably even more important with young people because we are setting an example for them. What do we want our children to learn? We can not expect kindness and respect from our children if we are not being kind and respectful toward them.
4) Avoiding Contention.
The Prophet, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam, said, “If a man gives up contention when he is in the wrong, a house will be built for him within the Garden of Paradise; but if a man gives up contention, even when he is in the right, a house will be built for him in the loftiest part of the Garden.” (Termithi) The value of this advice lies in the fact that contention and disputes lead to a breakdown in the relationship, even rancor, enmity, and hostility. I have worked with many families where this has occurred and it can be very difficult to mend the wounds that have been created and to bring family members back together. It goes without saying that it is best to completely avoid reaching this low level.
Let us all work to improve our style of communication and our relationships with each other. When our children feel that their parents understand them and are willing to listen to them, they will open up their hearts and trust will develop. Effective teaching and discipline cannot be implemented without a certain level of trust, understanding, and mutual respect. If you are concerned about your children in a non-Muslim environment and it is affecting the way you interact with them, the best you can do is teach and advise them, give them responsibility, trust them, and let them know that you care for them. We can then make du’a and rely upon Allah’s Grace and Assistance. This is our best weapon in a world of non-belief. May Allah help each of us to strengthen the ties that bind us together as a family and bring happiness and contentment to our homes.
Set aside some time each day to talk with your child. If you have more than one child, each should have their own equal, individual time.
Read books with your child about Islam that pertain to relationships with others and stories about the Prophet, sallallaahu alayhe wa sallam, and the companions, radiallaahu anhum. These will provide you with the necessary guidelines and inspiration.
Tape record one of your conversations and rate yourself or have other give you feedback. This is an effective method to determine your weak areas and to improve upon them.
Obtain advice from other parents when needed, especially those who have more experience. This may save time and avoid undue hardships and pain.
1. Consider children a great bounty of Allah Ta’ala. Rejoice at their birth. Congratulate one another on their arrival. Welcome the children into this world with Du’aas of righteousness and blessings. Express your gratitude unto Allah Ta’ala for affording you the opportunity of nurturing a Muslim servant and also for allowing you to leave behind your worldly and religious successor. Make Du‘aa that Allah Ta’ala makes this child an addition to the Muslim Ummah as a Da’i (inviter to Islâm) and a true servant of the Deen.
2. If you don’t have any children, make Du‘â unto Allah Ta’ala for pious children just as Hadrat Zakariyya (alayhis salaam) made Du‘â . He entreated Allah Ta’ala in the following words:
Rabbî Hab Lî min Ladunka Zurriyatan-Tayyibah Innaka Sam‘îud-Duâ.
Trans: “O My Lord! Grant me from your side pleasant children for verily You are very attentive to the prayers (of everyone). [Maryam]
3. Don’t ever be disappointed on the birth of children. Due to financial restraints or health problems or due to any other reason, vigorously refrain from fretting and fuming, from regarding the child as an encumbrance or from belittling or cursing the child.
4. After the birth of the child, wash and clean him up and then call out the Azân in the right ear and Iqâmah in the left ear. There is great wisdom in ensuring that the names of Allah Ta’ala and His Rasulullah fall onto the child’s ears the moment he is born. ‘Allamah Ibnu Qayyim writes in his book Tohfatul-Wadood:
“The purpose of this is to ensure that words denoting the grandeur and greatness of Allah Ta’ala falls first onto the ears of the child. The Shahâdah (attestation) that would Physically admit him into Islâm later on, the words of the same Shahâdah are being dictated to him the day he is born just as the words of the Kalimah are dictated to him when he is breathing his last. Another benefit of calling out the Azân and Iqâmah is that Shaytân , who is just waiting to waylay a person and seeks to entangle a person with a snare of trials and tribulations from the moment he is born, flees the moment he hears the Azân . Before the beckoning of Shaytân , he is summoned to the call of Islâm and the devotion of Allah Ta’ala.”
5. If possible, after the Azân and Iqâmah , get a pious man or woman to chew a piece of date or anything sweet and place it onto the palate of the child and request the pious person to make Du‘â for the child.
6. Choose a suitable name for the child. Name the child after the prophets or the Sâhâbah or add the word ‘Abd to one of the names of Allah Ta’ala like ‘Abdullâh, ‘Abdur-Rahmân etc.
7. If out of ignorance you kept an offensive or unpleasant name, change it with another appropriate name.
8. Perform ‘Aqîqah on the seventh day. Slaughter two animals for a male and one for a female issue. However, slaughtering two animals for a male child is not necessary. Even one would suffice. Thereafter shave the child’s hair and give gold or silver equivalent to the weight of the hair in charity. (You may give cash as well.)
9. On the seventh day, circumcise on the male child. However, if this is not possible by the seventh day, get it done at least before he is seven years old. Khatnah (circumcision) is an Islâmic characteristic.
10. When the child starts talking, teach him the words of “Lâ ilâhâ IllAllah” first.
11. Feed the child with your own milk as well. This is a right of the child over the mother. Breastfeeding is one of the favours the Holy Qurân reminds the children about thereby emphasising the importance of showing kindness to the mother. The child naturally develops more love for the mother who breastfeeds him. Such children are generally more obedient and the mothers also have fewer complains about such children. Coupled with this, it is also the mother’s responsibility that with every drop of milk, she imparts the lesson of Tauhîd, the love of Rasulullah , the devotion to Dîn to the child and also that she endeavours to instil this love in his heart and soul. Do not lighten your burdens and relegate your responsibility onto the father’s shoulders but fulfil this pleasant religious obligation yourself and you will be blessed with spiritual tranquillity and joy. As far as possible, stay away from T‘awizes (amulets etc.) for the children. Instead of utilising T‘awîzes for them, teach them the Du’aas for various occasions. Recite verses of the Holy Qurân and blow on them yourself. Also inculcate in them the habit of reciting the Manzil and memorising the verses contained therein.
12. Refrain from intimidating the child. The anxiety he suffers in these developing years will affect his mind and soul for the rest of his lifetime. Generally, such children are not primed to accomplish any feat of merit. Also, don’t force the child to do anything when he is hungry.
13. Be particularly cautious about scolding, admonishing and rebuking the child for every trivial matter. Instead of showing disgust towards their deficiencies, with wisdom and enthusiasm, endeavour to rear them with love and affection. Nonetheless, your conduct with them should portray that you will not tolerate anything contrary to the Sharî‘ah.
14. Always treat your children with love, affection and warmth. As far as possible, attend to their needs and kindle their spirit of obedience. Avoid questioning the child about Why? When? and Who? Avoid questions like: “Why did you do this? Don’t you have any shame? When would you learn? I don’t know what to do with you!” Instead of admonishing the child in this manner, employ a positive stance. Rub your hand over his head and very affectionately explain that this is not what should be done. Etc. etc.
15. Show love and affection to the younger children. Rub your hands affectionately over their heads. Take them into your lap and love them. Your conduct with them should be one of cheerfulness and joviality. Don’t act like a stern and cruel ruler with them. Conducting yourself in this stern manner will fail to encourage any loving spirit in the hearts of the children for their parents. Also, the children will fail to develop any form of self-confidence and the harsh behaviour of their parents has an adverse effect on the natural nurturing of the child.
16. Expend all your energies in providing your children with decent education and wholesome upbringing. In pursuit of this objective, don’t be the least hesitant. This is your religious obligation, a great favour unto your children and a great act of goodwill unto yourself as well.
17. When the child reaches the age of seven, teach him about the performance of Salâh. Instruct him to observe this act of ‘Ibâdat. Make the girls perform the Salâh with you and send the boys to the Musjid with their father and develop the enthusiasm for the performance of Salâh. When they turn ten and they show any shortcoming in discharging this obligation, punish them appropriately. Let your actions and statements point out to them that you would not tolerate any form of carelessness in the discharge of this duty.
18. When they turn ten, separate their beds and make each one of them sleep on separate beds.
19. Always keep the children clean and tidy. Be very particular about their hygiene, bathing and cleanliness. Ensure that their clothes are clean and Pâk. However, abstain from excessive grooming and vanity. Keep the girls clothing simple as well. Don’t ruin the morals of the boys by making them wear flamboyant and gaudy clothing.
20. Avoid mentioning their faults in front of others. Be very cautious about putting the child to shame. At all costs, refrain from bruising his ego. Similarly, when one of them errs, don’t scold all of them. Advise the offender separately or take appropriate action against him alone.
21. In front of the children, don’t reveal your despair over their failure to rectify themselves. In fact, to boost their spirits, praise them wholeheartedly even over trivial achievements. Always try to encourage them and raise their spirit of self-confidence.
22. Relate to them the stories of the Prophets . Explain how they invited the non-Muslims to Islâm and what role their character played in attracting the infidels to Islâm. Also narrate to them incidents from the lives of the Sahâbah and other pious people. Regard such narration as crucial for their morals and for the development of their affiliation towards Dîn. In spite of your thousand and one other chores, take out a bit of time for this as well. May Allah Ta’ala assist you and all the other Muslim mothers.
23. Periodically, make the children distribute alms, food etc. to the poor with their on hands. This would promote a spirit of sympathy and generosity towards the poor. Now and again, allow them to distribute food, (sweets etc.) to their other siblings as well as this would engender a sense of recognising the rights of others and create a spirit of impartiality amongst them.
24. Do not comply with the child’s every whim and fancy. With tact and wisdom, try to dissuade the child from this habit. Employ a bit of harshness now and again. Don’t turn them into obstinate and adamant children by showering them with misplaced love.
25. Avoid speaking in harsh tones. Avoid yelling and shrieking and advise the children to speak in a moderate and gentle tone as well. Also stress upon them to avoid shouting and yelling at one another.
26. Develop amongst them the habit of doing everything by themselves. They should avoid depending on the servants for every little thing.
27. If there is a squabble amongst children, don’t side with your child unfairly. Remember, just as you cherish certain feelings in favour of your child, other parents also cherish the same feelings in favour of their children. Also, don’t allow the complaints of your sister-in-law’s children or the complaints of the neighbours to reach your husband.
28. Always be impartial to all your children. Be very cautious and refrain from showing favouritism at all costs. If you have a greater inclination to one of your children you are excused but as far as your conduct, behaviour and dealings are concerned, you should be impartial and fair to each one of them.
29. Always be an excellent example to your children. You are unto your children a perpetual and silent teacher who is always studied and scrutinised by the children. Even in jest, do not speak lies before your children.
30. Be cheerful on the birth of a daughter just as you are cheerful on the birth of a son. Girls or boys, both are blessings of Allah Ta’ala. Allah alone knows which is best for you; a boy or a girl. Similarly, don’t express displeasure when one of your sister’s-in-law gives birth to a girl child. Also don’t pressure your sister-in-law or your brother’s in laws to give gifts etc. on this occasion, thereby attracting their curses. Forcing others to give presents renders one guilty of accepting or partaking of Harâm wealth. It appears in the Hadîth that Rasulullah said: “Behold! The wealth of a person is not Halâl except with the happiness of the heart.” [Mishkât Page 255 Hadîth 8] May Allah Ta’ala protect us all from Harâm gifts.
31. Bring up your daughters with heartfelt joy, devout happiness, and a sense of religious spirit. In compensation of this, cherish the hope of Jannah from Allah Ta’ala.
32. Do not regard the female child as inferior to the male and do not give him preference over her. Expose the same love for both of them and conduct yourself impartially with both of them.
33. With enthusiasm and care, ensure that you give the girls their fixed share of a deceased’s estate. Also, be specific in your will about depriving the daughters of their share of the inheritance. Make sure you study books on this subject like Tarîqa-e-Wasiyyat and Ahkâm-e-Mayyit.
34. The ideal mother is she who instils the honour and esteem of her husband into the hearts of her children. She explains in various ways the status he commands as a leader and chief of the household. For instance, when something crops up, she responds by saying: “We’ll ask your father when he returns. We’ll do it if he agrees otherwise not because there is always good in obeying him. Allah Ta’ala is also pleased. Dad is the leader of the household. Obedience to the leader in permissible matters removes a number of calamities and this also attracts the mercy of Allah Ta’ala.” Etc. etc.
35. Similarly, the ideal mother is she who refrains from arguing and quarrelling with her husband in front of her children. In spite of the most detestable behaviour of her husband, she exercises patience in front of them and submits to the husband: “Yes, I was at fault, I am sorry. This won’t happen in the future.” Then when she is alone with him, she explains the proper situation to him and that she didn’t say anything at that time because of the children. Similarly, the ideal mother is she who refrains from giving the husband and children any sad news the moment they come home. She does not pounce on them with a volley of questions nor does she criticise them on any of their shortcomings the moment they step foot into the house. Instead, she greets them with Salâm, feeds them properly and then she says what has to be said.
36. The ideal mother is she who tries to maintain between two children an appropriate gap that allows the first one to complete breastfeeding and become a bit self-sufficient and also it affords the mother to overcome her weakness she suffered due to childbirth and breastfeeding. This gives her the opportunity to lighten her shoulders from the turmoil of a very young child. Now when she has no other valid Shar‘î excuse, she prepares herself for the next child so that each one of them can be brought up correctly and each one is awarded individual attention. This gap also offers her the opportunity to offer each child her individual attention and also it also allows her to recuperate after the weakness of childbirth, breastfeeding etc. Also, this gap ensures that the milk she is presently feeding is not adversely affected by another pregnancy. Therefore, it is recommended that the couple employ temporary measures of birth control and maintain a reasonable gap between their children. In fact, in view of the health of the mother or the child or on grounds of compelling reasons, after consulting with the Muftîs, she may even maintain a longer gap provided her intentions are not warped.
37. The ideal mother is she who honours her husband’s as well as her own mother in a manner pleasing unto Allah Ta’ala and this in turn engenders the same graciousness, Dînî spirit and honour amongst her children as well. She who happens to be a “coolness unto the eyes” of her mother and the husband’s mother, her children will also be a “coolness unto her eyes”.
38. The ideal mother is she who practises upon the advices proffered in this book and endeavours to instil these attributes into her Muslim sisters as well. She also encourages her Muslim sisters to read this book and books like Tohfa-e-Khawâtîn, Tohfa-e-Dulhan, Fadâil-e-A‘amâl, Fadâil-e-Sadaqât. She also makes Du‘â for the compiler of this book and the people who have assisted in its publication and also for those men and women engaged in the effort of Dîn.
39. Do not keep two daughters-in-law of conflicting temperament together. Ensure that you don’t get two of your sons married at the same time. If you have to do this, ensure that they stay separately. This arrangement encompasses a number of benefits and advantages to all parties concerned. For further information on this topic, read the book Tohfa-e-Dulhâ under the chapter “advices to the parents of the groom”.
40. When your daughter reaches the age of seven, bring her up in such a manner that she avoids shaking hands with men and she covers all her hair when she steps out of the home. Also, from an early age, develop the habit of making her wear long tops and (cotton) pants so that her legs remain covered at all times.
41. Together with the aforementioned strategies, make Du’aas for your children with ardent zeal and enthusiasm. Also abstain from the disobedience of Allah Ta’ala and restrain others from the same. It is hoped that Allah Ta’ala would not thrust aside the sincere Du’aas emanating from the depths of the parent’s hearts.
This article presents the current relationship between a father and a child in this fast paced and time constraint society and provides many practical advises on how to improve this relationship to benefit the whole family.
It has been estimated that working fathers spend about 3 minutes a day with their children.
Fathers who abandon their families, fathers who rarely see their children because of divorce, and fathers who are busy and have very little or nothing to do with the raising of their children are common.
Dad gets up early, takes the long drive to work, gets off late, takes the long drive home, and gets home very tired. He just wants to have dinner, relax a little, and go to bed so that he can repeat the same routine the next day. Every now and then, he tells himself that he will spend more time with his children tomorrow.
But Muslims aren’t like that, you say.
How much time do you spend with your children in the day? Not just in the same house, but together — really together.
A popular American song by Harry Chapin tells the sad story of a boy who always tries to spend time with his father, but always finds him too busy. When the boy grows up and the father gets older, the father always wants to spend time with his son, but his son always has other things to do.
Quality time spent between a father and his children is essential for both the parent and the children. The children need to know that their father loves and cares for them, and the father needs to be careful that he doesn’t lose his relationship with his children by neglect.
Tips to Improve Father-Child Relationship
There are several ways a father can spend quality time with his children and develop a relationship with them. Even if he is extremely busy, he can probably free up enough time to do some of these things.
Show your children in simple ways that you love them. Some fathers try to appeal to their children by showering them with gifts rather than giving of themselves. This may cause more harm than good. The simple example of Prophet Muhammad is much better, may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him. When his daughter Fatima (May Allah be pleased with her) would come to him, the Prophet used to stand up, kiss her, take her hand, and give her his seat. Later in life, this personal type of affection will be much more memorable to children than receiving a gift that anyone could have given them.
Tell or read your
children stories on some nights before bed.
There are lots of excellent Islamic stories and books available that you can use, or you can make up your own. At the same time, you will be helping your children develop Islamic character. A twist on this idea is to ask your children to make up stories to tell you.
Play with your children sometimes.
You could play ball, color pictures, build toy houses from blocks, or do whatever they like.
Let your children help you with simple tasks.
Allow them to help you carry in the groceries, make dinner, or mow the yard. Children often get great joy from doing things that adults consider work.
Take the family to for a picnic.
Spend time with your children playing Frisbee, passing a ball, or pushing them in the swings. Your children will cherish this special time together as a family.
Help your children with their homework.
Show them that you are truly interested in their education and life by asking them what they did in school and looking at their books, projects, and assignments with them.
Have at least two meals a week as a family.
Use driving time with your children.
Don’t just turn on the news and forget your children when they are in the car with you. Talk or joke with them, or sing Islamic songs together.
Give your small children a bath sometimes.
Usually, mothers bathe the children, but bath time is an excellent opportunity for fathers to be with their kids. Let them splash around and play a little more than mom does.
Teach your children
to make wudu and pray with you.
If at home, praying together as a family Jamat is better than praying alone. Children love to call azan. Make the youngest one the salat manager at home, taking care of prayer rugs, timing, and inviting everyone to salat.
children to the masjid with you.
This is an excellent way for you to build a relationship with them as both a father and a Muslim.
Be available for your children, and let them know that you are there for anything they want to discuss.
If you are not available to talk to your children, somebody else probably will be, and it may be the wrong kind of person. A good way of getting to know your children better as individuals is to take them out one at a time for eating, conversation, or some other event.
Practice talking with your child, not at him.
Since the father often takes the main responsibility for disciplining the children, it is very easy for fathers to merely become order-givers rather than parents and companions of their children. Spend some time listening, rather than talking.
We only have one chance to be with our kids before they grow up. If we want them to love us and respect us when we are old, we have to build those relationships while they are young.
Fathers usually don’t have the time to devote to their children that mothers do. But if we make the little time we have with our children quality time, we still might be able to build enduring relationships with them before it’s too late.
By Ibrahim Bowers
1. Teach children to use the right hand for eating, drinking, giving and taking. To eat and drink while sitting, and to stay, ‘Bismillah’ before eating and, ‘Alhamdulillah’ after finishing.
2. Teach children hygienic etiquette, to clip fingernails and toe nails, and to wash hands before and after eating.
3. Teach them how to clean themselves after using the toilet and how to keep urine off their clothes.
4. Correct their mistakes kindly and privately without scolding them.
5. Instruct them to listen to the Adhaan quietely and repeat the words of Adhaan after the Muadhin, then to ask Allah to exalt the mention of the Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] and supplicate the following,
‘O Allah, the Rabb (Lord) of this complete invitation, and the ready prayer, grant Muhammad the means and the virtue, and raise him to a praised rank which You have promised him.’
6. Assign each of them a separate bed, if possible, otherwise a separate cover. It is most preferable to have a room for girls and another for boys.
7. Instruct them to remove harmful objects off the road and not to throw litter on it.
8. Warn against bad company and against loitering.
9. Greet children with Assalaamu alaykum at home, in school, and in public.
10. Instruct children to be kind to neighbours and to be helpful to them, and avoid bothering or disturbing them.
11. Instruct them to be courteous to guests and to treat them with generosity.
The rule of Music and Singing
It is the duty of the educators to warn children against listening to music and singing. Allah states, ‘And of men who take idle talk to lead men away from the path of Allah without knowledge, and make fun of it. For such there will be humiliating punishment.’ (31:6)
Most scholars are agreed that idle talk is nothing but singing. Ibn Mas’ood [radhiallaahu anhu] said the same. Allah also addressed Satan saying, ‘And excite whoever you can with your sound.’ (17:64)
The Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] said, ‘There will be from my Ummah those who will deem as lawful; fonircation, silk (for Muslim males), liquor and music.’
The great scholar Mujahid and others said, ‘The sound of Satan is music and singing.’
Singing of Today
Most, if not all, of the singing today talks about love, voluptuous desires, kissing and details of a woman’s body and other sexual connotations, things that excite the youth and incite them to establish illicit relations.
The best way to combat the habit of listening to music is reading the Qur’aan and the rememberance of Allah, and reading the Seerah or the biography of the Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam].
Obedience to Parents
If you want to attain success in both worlds, then you should apply the following advice:
1. Speak politely to your parents and humble yourself before them and be kind to them, and never scold them nor express a word of disgust to them.
2. Obey your parents as long as no disobedience to Allah is involved.
3. Never frown at them, nor give them an angry look.
4. Honour them and guard their reputation and their property. Never take anything from them without permission.
5. Do what pleases them, and help them out even without their asking for your help.
6. Consult them in your own affairs, and apologise to them if you fail to do so.
7. Respond to them quickly and with a smile and when they call you.
8. Treat with courtesy your parents’ friends and relatives during their life and life after their death.
9. Never argue with them, nor blame them and if they err, show them politely their error.
10. Never speak to them with loud voice, and listen politely to them.
11. Help around the house, and offer help to your father at his work.
12. Do not travel without their permission, and if you do, keep in touch with them.
13. Never enter their bedroom before knocking and receiving permission to enter.
14. Never offend them by any bad habit that you may have.
15. Never start eating before they do.
16. Never give your wife or children priority over them. Seek their pleasure, for doing so secures the pleasure of Allah.
17. Do not sit on a place higher than theirs.
18. If you maintain them, never be niggardly towards them. The way you treat them, your children will treat you.
19. The most deserving of your kindness is your mother, then your father, and know that Jannah lies under the feet of mothers.
20. Never be disobedient to your parents, for this is the case of misery in both worlds.
21. Ask your parents to supplicate in your favour, because Allah responds to their Du’aa for you or against you.
22. Supplicate frequently for them, and ask Allah’s forgiveness for them.
23. Never cause anyone to curse them. The Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] explained this by saying, ‘When a man curses another, the other would curse the man’s father. So beware of this horrible sin.’
24. Remember whatever good deeds you do or accomplish, your parents will benefit from it after their death. And remember too that the Prophet [sallallaahu alayhi wasallam] said, ‘You and your property belong to your father’.
Guidelines for Raising Children
Abdul Rahman Abdullah Manderolla
[Source: Madrasa In’aamiyyah]
Parents are responsible to give their children the best names possible.
When naming our children we should ensure a beautiful meaning rather than an exotic sounding name void of meaning.Some parents ignorantly choose names that have a bad meaning just because it sounds good. The child grows up being called a bad name.
It is wise to choose a name that will be pronounced with ease by the community the child will grow up in. This will avoid distortions or changes in meaning due to being mispronounced.
Mufti Ismail Menk
One of the saddest situations is when parents are not supportive of their children’s choice to become more serious about their religion citing that they are too young or any other excuse. Some go to the extent of threatening their children if they will try to increase in spirituality.
This happens to spouses as well.
Rather than discourage them, we should be very happy when they incline towards the Almighty in a bigger way than ourselves. Perhaps our children and family members could be a means of our entry into Paradise by our mere support of their achievements. If we block them from getting closer to the Almighty, we may suffer severe consequences at some stage unless we repent.
May the Almighty strengthen us to be an asset to our family members by assisting them get closer to the Almighty.
Mufti Ismail Menk
There is great need to devote special attention to the nurturing of children. How will the nurturing of children take place? By establishing friendship! Establish friendship with one’s children. You are in search of friends? What need is there for this! If Allah ta`ala has granted you four sons, realise that your sons are your friends. Establish friendship with your children. Harshness and severity will not work. Keep your relationship with the wife a pleasant and wholesome one. Remember that the better the relationship between husband and wife the better the effect upon the children, the loftier the results with reference to the nurturing of one’s children. If one has the experience, by analysing children, one will be able to determine the relationship between husband and wife.
If one has opportunity to spends time with one’s family occupied in permissible activities one should do so. Such permissible activities will be the precursors, the means to Ibaadah, to worship. Such permissible activities become a fortress against forbidden acts, against the disobedience to Allah Ta`ala. Occasionally go on an outing with one’s family. Go to some appropriate location together while at other times be together at home. On a weekend get involved in cooking and preparing, pack a picnic basket and go out. My paternal grandfather, Allah grant him Maghfirat, used to take me at a very early age to the Majaalis of the Mashaaikh. This was during the period of British rule. In fact I was so young that I used to be in his lap in the Majaalis of the Mashaaikh. Shukr, gratitude is due to Alaah Ta`ala that those Majaalis are imprinted on the mind . The hearts of children are like blank sheets of white paper. Whatever is written thereon will indelibly remain imprinted thereon.
My Hadhrat (rahmatullahi alai) used to say, “Consider sleeping children to be awake. If one wants to discuss something, go elsewhere and do so. Do not do so in the presence of sleeping children. Consider sleeping children to be awake. It should not be that some statement or action of yours becomes imprinted on that white paper.
My beloved brothers! These are a few offerings by this helpless traveller. The gist of the matter, the essence of advice is that one should be fully involved in the nurturing and upbringing of one’s children. Then and then only will one procure peace and serenity in the true sense of the word. Otherwise, if these very children become a means of one being tested, if they become the currency of tribulation your lives will become wretched. We beseech Allah Ta`ala to grant us correct understanding and insight, to grant us Taufeeq, the ability and ease to enact the correct upbringing and nurturing of our children.
Source: Right Islam
We are what we eat. Today we complain our children are disobedient towards us, but why the surprise? If we feed our children haram (even while in the womb) then the thoughts that will be bred in their minds (later in life) will be haram. Understand well, halal foods breed halal thoughts and halal actions whilst haram food breeds haram thoughts and haram actions.
Shaykh Ashraf Ali Thanwi narrates, ‘If before birth of the child, parents were to reform themselves and adopt piety, then there is no reason why the child born too should not be pious. The actions of parents during pregnancy have a profound effect on the unborn child. Accordingly, the son of a saint was quite mischievous. Somebody queried the saint; ‘It is indeed strange; you are so pious yet your son so naughty?’ The saint replied, ‘ One evening I was invited to meals by a rich person (whose income was doubtful). After eating, my nafs became excited and I made love to my wife who became pregnant. This child is the effect of the doubtful food.’
Therefore, during pregnancy (especially) it is of the utmost importance to eat a varied halal diet brought from halal income. If in doubt regarding ingredients, leave it out.
Source: Ashrafs Blessings of Marriage published by Ashrafs Amanat