Some Wise Advice You Should Give to Your Children
The issue of raising children is very important, the interest of both parents and children depends on it; the interest of the Ummah as well as the community’s future is directly impacted by our ability to succeed in this. Islam takes great interest in it, and so do the educators, the first of whom is the Messenger Muhammad [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam], whom Allah sent as a teacher and guide to parents and children to ensure their happiness in both worlds.
The Qur’aan contains many examples of good character such as the story of Luqmaan, the wise, who gave his son valuable advice.
The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] himself taught his cousin, ibn Abbaas [Radhiallaahu anhuma] the Aqeedah of Tawheed from a young age.
The reader will find all of this along with other instructions, duties and the rights of both parents and children, which we ask Allah to help make them beneficial to us and incorporate them into our lives.
1. Luqmaan had advised his son, and Allah the Exalted disclosed his words, ‘O my son, do not associate partners with Allah. Verily, Shirk (polytheism) is a grievous sin.’ (Luqmaan 13). Therefore, beware of committing Shirk in worshipping Allah such as supplicating to dead or absent people. The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] said, ‘Du’aa (supplication or prayer) is worship.’
2. Allah the Exalted says: ‘And We have enjoined on man (to be dutiful and good) to his parents. His mother bore him in weakness and hardship upon weakness and hardship, and his weaning is in two years, give thanks to Me and to your parents. Unto Me is the final destinatrion.’ (Surah31:14)
It is clear that Allah the Exalted has connected worshipping Him Alone with kindness to parents due to the seriousness of their rights. The mother suffers during pregnancy, while the father takes it upon himself to earn a living for the family because of this it is incumbent upon a Muslim to be graceful to Allah then to his parents.
3. Allah says in the next Aayah, ‘But if they (both) strive with you to make you join in worship with Me others that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not; but behave with them in the world kindly, and follow the path of him who turns to Me in repentance and in obedience. Then to Me will be your return, and I shall tell you what you used to do.’ (V31:15)
In his comment on this Aayah, ibn Kathir states, ‘If your parents are anxious to adhere to their faith, then refuse to do so, but this should not prevent you from keeping good relations with them in this world and follow the path of the believers.’
4. In the next Aayat, Allah the Exalted again informed us with the words of Luqmaan, ‘O my son, even if it is the weight of a mustard seed deposited inside a rock, or in the heavens, or in the earth, Allah will surely bring it out. Verily, Allah knows all subtleties, All-Aware.’ (V31:16)
Ibn Kathir said, ‘The offence or the error even if it is as minute as the weight of a mustard seed, Allah will judge it on the Day of Resurrection when He sets the (Scales of justice) so that He requites it be it good or evil.’
5. In the next Aayah, ‘O my son, perform Salaat.’ (observing it on time with all of its requirements humbly and conscientiously). (V31:17)
6. Another good advice, ‘And enjoin the good and forbid evil.’ (gently and without harshness). (V31:17)
7. Luqmaan further advised his son, as quoted in the Qur’aan, ‘Bear with patience whatever befalls you.’ (Verily, these are some of the important commandments – ordered by Allah with no exemption). (V31:17)
The believer is enjoined to be patient. The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] said, ‘The believer who consorts with people and endures their harm is better than a believer who does not consort with people nor does he endure their harm.’
8. Allah, the Exalted, continue Luqmaan’s advice in the next Aayah, ‘And do not turn away from people through pride.’ (V31:18).
When talking to people, or when they talk to you, do not show disrespect to them, or show arrogance, rather face them pleasantly, and smile at them. The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] said, ‘Smiling at your brother is an act of charity in your favour.’
9. In the next Aayah, another advice, ‘Now walk haughtily on earth, surely, Allah does not love any arrogant boaster.’ (who admires himself, and despise others) (V31:18)
10. Another general etiquette, ‘And walk at a moderate pace (neither quick nor slow) (31:19)
11. Allah, the Exalted, says, ‘And lower your voice (when there is no need for raising the voice. That is why Allah said) ‘Verily, the harshest of all voices is the braying of the asses.’ (V31:19)
The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] said, ‘When you hear the roosters crow, ask Allah to grant from His bounty, for they have seen an angel. But when you hear a donkey’s braying, then ask Allah’s protection, for it has seen a Shaytaan (satan).
A great scholar, Mujahid, commented on the above Aayah saying, ‘The most offensive of sounds is that of donkeys. This means, he who raises his voice resembles donkeys; Allah abhors it. If our voice resembles this sound, it requires us to stop talking loudly.’
The Main Points
1. The legitimacy of exhorting one’s own son for his benefit in this world and the community’s benefit.
2. Giving Tawheed (belief in the Oneness of Allah) priority in teaching and warning against Shirk (polytheism) because it constitutes injustice, which nullifies good deeds.
3. The requirement of expressing gratefulness to Allah and to parents, and the children’s duty of being kind to parents.
4. The requirement of following the believers’ way, and the prohibition of following those astray.
5. Awareness of Allah in public and private, and warning against taking lightly good deeds or sins regardless of how minute they may be.
6. The requirement of performing Salaat (prayer) and observing all of its prerequisites perfectly.
7. The requirement of enjoining good manners and forbidding wrong with knowledge and kindness according to one’s capacity and applying wisdom and effective persuasion. Allah’s Messenger said, ‘He who witnesses the wrong, let him redress it with his hand. If he cannot do that, then redress it by his tongue. If he cannot, then by his heart, which reflects the lowest level of Imaan (faith).’
8. Endure patiently the consequences of enjoining the good and forbidding the wrong, which is a serious responsibility.
9. Prohibition of pride and arrogance.
10. Moderation in everything.
Valuable Prophetic Advices
Ibn abbaas [Radhiallaahu anhu] reported:
I was riding behind the Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] (on a beast) one day when he said to me, ‘O son, I am going to teach you some advice:
1. ‘Observe Allah, He guards you.’ (Obey His commands and avoid His prohibitions, He protects you in this world and in the world to come).
2. ‘Observe Allah, you will find Him ahead of you’ (observe the limits set by Allah and His rights, He brings you to success and supports you).
3. ‘When you ask, ask Allah. And when you seek help, seek the help of Allah’ (When you need a thing, ask Allah for it. And when you need help to accomplish any of your affairs, then seek the help of Allah, particularly in the things that only Allah can provide such as curing sickness, providing sustenance, etc.)
4. ‘And be certain that were the whole Ummah (nation) to collaborate to benefit you, they would never benefit you except in a thing which Allah has already foreordained for you, and if they were to collaborate to harm you, they would never harm you except in a thing which Allah has already foreordained against you.’ (this reflects deep faith in the ‘Qadaa and Qadr’ - its good and evil consequences)
5. ‘The pens are lifted and the sheets have become dry’
6. ‘Recognise Allah at times of ease, He recognises you at times of difficulty.’ (Fulfil the rights of Allah, and the rights of people at times of ease, He helps and relieves you at the time of your difficulties)
7. ‘And rest assured that whatever misses you, it would never befall you, and whatever befalls you, it would never miss you.’ (If Allah withholds a thing from you, it will never reach you. And if Allah grants you a thing, there is none to withhold it from you)
8. ‘And you should know that victory comes with endurance.’ (Victory against the enemy and the ego depends on perseverance and endurance)
9. ‘And the relief comes through distress’ (Distress that afflicts a believer, comes along with its relief)
10. ‘And along with difficulty comes ease.’
The Main Points
1. The kindness of the Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] towards children and addressing them in an amicable manner.
2. Direct children to obey Allah, and avoid disobeying Him which guarantees their happiness in this world and the world to come.
3. Allah relieves the believer’s difficulties when he delivers His rights and the rights of people at times of ease, health or affluence.
4. Inculcating the Aqeedah of Tawhid in the minds of children by teaching them to turn to Allah Alone for all their needs. This is the duty of parents and educators.
5. Inculcating in the minds of the children the belief in Qadaa and Qadr which is one of the articles of faith.
6. Teaching a child to be optimistic in order to face life’s realities with courage and confidence, and to become community minded and a believer who benefits his people.
7. The Prophet [Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam] taught his Ummah (nation) to endure patiently all conditions, for patience is one of the greatest means to victory.
8. The Prophet [Sallallaahu alayh Wasallam] advises his Ummah that distress and difficulty are always followed by relief, particularly when it is accompanied with supplication.