Remember Your Children Are Watching and You're Responsible

Assalamu Alaykom,

One thing we all can agree on is that the upbringing of a child is important. However, we may differ on what qualifies as being a good upbringing. As a Muslim, Islam has laid out guidelines in raising children. Yes, we all are in different situations and have various circumstances when it comes to our children. Some Muslim families are nuclear, single-parents, extended, and inter-cultural and inter-faith based. So, we have this reality on the table. We cannot deny this is the reality for many of us globally.

Islam is meant to be a mercy for the people, so it shouldn’t be hard. Also, Islam is easy and simple. In knowing this, Islam can only provide easiness for a person who strives to practice this religion.

Islam has told the parent/guardian over children and teenagers that ” The Prophet (s) said: “Allah (SWT) will ask every caretaker about the people under his care, and the man will be asked about the people of his household” (Nasa’i, Abu Da’ud). Parents/Guardians are responsible for the individuals in their care and they will be held to this responsibility until they are asked about it by their creator.

In addition, the head of the household is told that their primary responsibility is to keep themselves and their families from falling into error and landing themselves in the hellfire. The head of the household should teach, educate and be active in the family. There should be mutual love and understand between the family members. Allah states in the Quran, ““O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who disobey not, (from executing) the commands they receive from Allah, but do that which they are commanded” (Tahrim 66:6).

Also, It is really interesting to see how girls are one of the primary focuses for head of households because there was a time in which girls were simply ignored and seen as less than their male-counterpart in society. The prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) stated that “Whoever is in charge of any of these girls and treats them well, they will be a shield for him against the Fire” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 5649; Muslim, 2629). Also, he said that The Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, was also reported to have said: “Whoever has a female (daughter) and doesn’t bury her alive nor scorn her nor give preference to his male child over her, Allah will admit him to Paradise.” (Abu Dawood)

So, It is a blessing to have and to raise a daughter in Islam.

Also, in rearing children it is important to be just and to remember they are individuals with feelings. The prophet Muhammad said that the one who is not merciful towards others than God will not be merciful towards them. So, one must be mindful of their treatment to their child(ren).

Furthermore, the children should be raised in a household in which Islam is taught or lived out on a daily basis. Sadly, some parents simply expect the local mosque or Islamic-school to raise their children but this is not the case. One must understand that education starts at home. Islam should be seen as a way of life. It should be seen as a beautiful thing too. Of course, there should be joy, laughter, love, playfulness and education all at the same time. Islam shouldn’t be seen as a way of life that is hard, bothersome and restrictive. If one was to live Islam in this matter than it would only lead to the children growing up to hate and to distance themselves from such a lifestyle.

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