Education and Children in Islam

All praise is due to Allah SWT, Lord of the worlds and May His peace and blessings be upon His final prophet and messenger, Muhammad ﷺ.

Ninety-three years after Hijrah, the same year that Anas bin Malik rd passed away. A woman in Madinah Munawwarah named Aaliyah bint Shareek gave birth to a baby boy named Malik ibn Anas ibn Malik ibn Abi Amir. This baby like many of his family before him would have bought with him many hopes and dreams of manners and knowledge.

His grandfather Malik ibn Abi Amir RA moved to Madinah Munawwarah from Yemen during the caliphate of Umar bin Khattab RD and was a student of the companions of the Prophet ﷺ. He studied and served with the Khulafa-e-Rashideen and his children and their children all grew up to be scholars of Islam.

However, little Malik growing up was not very religious. He used to spend most of his time playing with pigeons. His ambition was to become a musician and his mother would constantly try to talk him out of it. She would habitually make him wear a turban and would tell him to go and study knowledge. She would tell him to go to Rabee’a, who was the prominent scholar of the time and would tell him to learn his Abad before his Ilm.

Hence, Malik sat with Rabee’a for two years to please his mother but did not benefit from him. He still wanted to pursue his career in the music industry. So even after two years, he did not dedicate himself to knowledge. In a un-scholar like manner, he used to wear earrings. He would practice his singing and as before, he spent a lot of time playing with his pigeons.

One day, his father asked him and his brother An-Nadr a question. His brother answered correctly but Malik made a mistake. In frustration, his father told him that his pigeons have made him too busy to seek knowledge. He got very angry at this remark and decided to dedicate himself to knowledge to prove his father wrong.

Donning on Islamic attire, Malik went to spend seven years with Abdullah ibn Yazid ibn Hurmus, a blind prominent scholar who had been through a lot of hardship and did not mix with anyone else during this time. Then he spent another five years with him and some other scholars.

Today, we know this Malik as Imam Malik RA. The author of the Muwwata-e-Imam Malik, one of the greatest hadith books compiled.

Now before I expand on this story, let me set another scene for you.

This year, May 2018. So many students will have taken their exams and now is the waiting game. The nervous anticipation. The hopes of passing. The prayers to succeed. Many will be eagerly awaiting. Some will be asking the question, have I passed. Did I do enough to succeed? However, at the same, some will be having nervous breakdowns whilst others will be completely relaxed.

This scene is so similar to another that we are yet to experience. Yes! I am talking about that event that every living soul will experience on the day of Judgement. However, I am not talking about you in general. No! Our worry and concern are the children of this Ummah who are the inheritors of the prophets of Allah SWT.

At a young age, we allow our children to do as they wish. Our thinking is that these children are young and should live their youth as they wish. Once they grow up, naturally, they will begin to be more inclined towards Islam. We allow them to do as they wish. From dressing them up according to the latest trends; to watching the latest musicals and playing video games in which modesty and mercy have no place. Why? Because we do not want our child to “miss out” and at the end of the day, everything is completely fine because our children go to madrasah anyway.

However, what happens? These children become teenagers, and what do they wish to do? They wish to listen to the latest hits, they want to dress according to the latest trends, they want the latest games, no matter what is in them and Islam has no place in their hearts. Going to learn about Islam is a burden and they only come to Madrasah because we, as Muslim parents, send them.

Years will pass and then? It is the day of Judgement. Along with everyone else, we will be standing on the plains of Reckoning, awaiting our judgement. Our sons or daughters will be standing in front of Allah SWT and Allah SWT will question our children. “Tell me son or daughter of so and so, why did you not act upon the Qur’an and Sunnah, despite being upon Islam?”

Regarding this day, Allah SWT says in the Glorious Qur’an,

On the Day a man will flee from his brother، and his mother and his father، and his wife and his children. Every man, that Day, will have enough to make him careless of others.
(Abasa: 34-37)

In this state on that day, can anyone of us think that if the carelessness has been on our part, will our children refrain from mentioning it?

I am sure, we have heard the words “The mother’s lap is the first Madrasah”, countless times. However, what do these words mean?

By nature, every believing parent worries about his or her child’s Islamic upbringing. There is always a certain degree of anxiousness when it involves getting the child to carry out an Islamic injunction. Moreover, when the child refuses to act upon it, it is always frustrating.

It is from amongst the children’s rights that their parents begin to encourage them towards Islamic injunctions when they reach the age of seven. Nevertheless, it is never easy to start something new with a seven years old child. By this age, children begin to express their own feelings and thoughts and they wish to know the reason behind every action.

This is why when children start school at the age of four; they are taught how to recognise letters and to read. It is easier for them to learn because they are more open-minded and adventurous. In this way, by the age of seven, they are completely independent and can read by themselves.

It has been narrated on the authority of Ibn ‘Umar (rd) that Rasulullah ﷺ said:

Beware! Every one of you is a shepherd and everyone is answerable with regard to his flock. The Caliph is a shepherd over the people and shall be questioned about his subjects (as to how he conducted their affairs). A man is a guardian over the members of his family and shall be questioned about them (as to how he looked after their physical and moral well-being). A woman is a guardian over the household of her husband and his children and shall be questioned about them (as to how she managed the household and brought up the children). A slave is a guardian over the property of his master and shall be questioned about it (as to how he safeguarded his trust). Beware! Every one of you is a guardian and every one of you shall be questioned with regard to his trust. (Sahih Muslim)

Thus, we come back to our point that the mother’s lap is the first madrasah. Why? Because the mother contributes the bigger share and plays the dominant role in the early training and education of her children.

By any or all means necessary, it is up to the mother to save the children by giving them a good Islamic education. Therefore, to ensure that our children lead a successful life according to the standards set by Islam, we as parents should dutifully train and educate them.

Allah SWT says in the glorious Qur’an,

Invite to the way of your Lord with wisdom and fair preaching, and argue with them with that which is best. Truly, your Lord knows best who has strayed from His path, and He knows best those who are guided.
(An-Nahl: 125)

This verse does not only apply to the person calling others towards Islam but us parents too. As parents, it is our duty to guide with wisdom, affection, patience and steadfastness.

In connection to this Allah SWT says:

O you who have believed, protect yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is people and stones, over which are [appointed] angels, harsh and severe; they do not disobey Allah in what He commands them but do what they are commanded.
(Tahreem: 6)

Commentating on this verse, the interpreters of the Qur’an have said:

“It is an obligation for the Muslim to teach his near family members, and his male and female slaves what Allah has made obligatory for them and what Allah has forbidden for them.”

A Hadith confirms the meaning of this Ayah. It is recorded in Abu Dawood that Rasulullah ﷺ said,

“Order the children to pray when they reach the age of seven and when they reach the age of ten, discipline them (for not performing it).”

Now going back to the story of Imam Malik RA, Look at the way that Allah SWT works. Unbeknown to him, Allah SWT had great plans for little Imam Malik RA. He may not have wanted to pursue the Religion of Allah but Allah SWT made his mother and father a source of guidance towards his Religion.

Especially his mother, who always encouraged him to study with the Scholars and not only did she encourage him but she also guided him to the person who she thought was the most learnt amongst the Scholars of Madinah Munawwarah. We can only imagine how much worry and concern she must have had for her child that Allah SWT took away from her, her deepest concern. However, to what extent?! Subhanallah!

The Prophet ﷺ said in the Musnad of Imam Ahmad;

“There will come a time where people will strike the thighs of their camels, travelling the world to seek knowledge. (Meaning people will travel all over the world) and they will not find anyone more knowledgeable than the scholar of Madinah.”

By the consensus of many scholars, this Scholar of Madinah refers to Imam Malik RA.

I am sure many of us here will be able to relate to Imam Malik’s RA story. We have all heard of or come across a youth who have unfortunately gone towards the wrong path.

We live in corrupt times, where every corner that we turn, we see either immorality or disgrace and during this time, we have upon us the burden of bringing up pious children who will, Insha Allah, safeguard the Religion of Allah SWT.

Now you may be thinking, it is so much easier said than done and you would be right in thinking that. It is much harder. Not only have times changed but so has the society. We no longer live in a world where the mother’s place is at home and the father is the sole breadwinner of the family. However, if we did not have the willpower to do so, then we would not have been given this blessing in the first place.

The basis of a good Islamic education and good morals starts at home. He who guides to good deeds is like the doer thereof and he who leads to bad deeds is like the doer thereof.

In essence, if parents bring up their children with a good Islamic foundation and the children act upon it, it will be regarded as Sadaqa-e-Jariyyah. On the contrary, if the parents neglected this duty then it will be regarded as Azaab-e-Jariyyah. Meaning that whatever evil the children do, the parents will get continuous punishment for it after their death.

If we impart upon our children a good Islamic education, on growing up they will act upon within the guidance of Islam and will become a good source of education for others, thus Allah SWT will reward us for all their good actions continuously in the hereafter for their efforts.

Rasulullah ﷺ has said,

“When a person dies, all his deeds come to an end except three: sadaqah jaariyah (ongoing charity, e.g. a waqf or endowment), beneficial knowledge (which he has left behind), or a righteous child who will pray for him.” (Reported by al-Tirmidhi)

May Allah SWT accept from us and you. Ameen.

All praise is due to Allah SWT at the beginning and at the end.

thekatibahwrites

Resources used;

http://seekershub.org/blog/2011/03/is-the-hadith-the-scholars-are-the-inheritors-of-the-prophets-authentic-if-so-what-does-it-mean-faraz-rabbani

https://quran.com/

 

 

 

 

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The Katibah.

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The people of the past encouraged the sunnah and the people of the present discourage the sunnah. Then they wonder why their prayers are not accepted. :/

The Katibah.

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Yet again you reap what you sow!

It greatly saddens me to post this. 😦

Allah the almighty says in the glorious quraan:

“And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honour.” [17:23]

Subhanallah! How beautifully Allah swt honours the parents.  He puts them straight after His worship! Yet how easily we dishonour them. They reach old age and we send them in to care homes.

Then carrying on from the Quraanic verse above, Allah the almighty says: “And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy, and say: “My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was small.” [17:23]

We ask Allah swt to show them mercy as they did us, yet we ourselves who they bought up, we show no mercy to them!

How unfortunate we are! How unfortunate we are! 😦

The Katibah.

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What is the use of knowledge when it is only applied in the classroom?

The Katibah.

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The Katibah.

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The Katibah.

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The Katibah.

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Undoubtedly, we are an example for our children. If we want them to become pious but we do not walk the path of the rightly guided, then the image we are portraying for our children is one of hypocrisy.

We want the best for them (Insha Allah) and the best would be to succeed in this world and in the hereafter.

Just as we cannot expect a seed to grow without water, we cannot expect our children to become pious with duaas without effort and dedication.

So like we pray to Allah swt for our children to be rightly guided, we also need to pray to Allah swt to guide us and keep us guided on the straight path.

Remember! You reap what you sow!

The Katibah.

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The Katibah.

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