Islamic Perspectives

Sagacious advice which Muslim parents must give to their children

S.M. Pasha

Only an adamant diehard kafir [disbeliever] will refuse to admit that the Qur’an is a universal guide to the entire mankind in general and not to Muslims alone. One of the most important act which a Momin has been called upon to do is  “To enjoin good and forbid evil”. By doing it, one purifies not only oneself but also others and thus establishes peace and happiness in the world.

In Surah Luqmaan [Chapter 3I] one will find such a sagacious advice given by a  good Muslim father to his son. It is this advice which is being recommended in this write-up.

The Surah commences with three words - the meanings of which Allah alone knows - and describes the Holy Qur’an as a “Wise Book” and a “Guide and mercy to the muhsinun [doers of good deeds]. It further adds that “good acts” mean “iqamatus salaat” and “aatus zakaat”  [establishment of the five times obligatory prayers and distribution of the annual obligatory charity]. It further makes it clear that the above-mentioned acts will bring success to the performer of the acts.

In ayat 12 of the Surah, we are told by Allah Subhaanahu wa ta’ala that He bestowed on Luqhman (R) “al-Hikhmah” [wisdom] and called upon him to be thankful to Him. For whosoever thanks Allah actually does so for the good of one’s own self and whosoever is not thankful, he or she is the loser, since Allah is absolutely free from all wants, and worthy of all praise.

Luqhman (R) commences his sagacious advice to his son in ayat 13,  by first of all calling upon him not to join in worshipping anybody or anything else except Allah since such an act is a great zulm, a great wrong.

In the next ayat, Allah says that He has enjoined on children to be good and dutiful to their mothers, calling upon them to bear in mind the fact that a child’s mother bears him or her in weakness and hardships and not forget that they have to ultimately one day return to Him and it will be their eternal destination.

Allah Subhanahutalah, in ayat no. 15 enjoins upon human beings to be good and dutiful children of their parents and to remember that mothers bear their children despite weakness and hardships and breastfeed their children for two years.  He, therefore, asks human beings to be thankful to Him and to their parents. At the same time He warns that in case the parents try to persuade their children to worship anything or anybody other than Him, children must not obey such a command. But at the same time, He wants them to behave with parents kindly as far as worldly matters are concerned. Besides, Allah commands children to follow the path only of those who turn to Him in repentance and obedience. Muslim parents must make this clear to their children so that they grow up to become good Muslims and good human beings.

In ayat no. 16,  Luqman reminds his son that Allah is so Well-Knowing that if a small object equal to the weight of a mustard seed hidden inside a rock or in any corner of the heavens or underneath the earth, He is capable of bringing it forth.

In the next ayat the son is enjoined to perform the obligatory prayers besides enjoining on his fellow human beings al-maroof and also forbid them from indulging in al-munkar  [that which is prohibited].

The son is asked by the father not to turn away from other people in arrogance and also not to walk in insolence on earth because Allah Subhanahu wa ta’ala does not like an arrogant boaster – ayat 18.

Continuing his sagacious advice in the ayat 19, the son is asked to be modest whilst walking and also to lower his voice whilst talking. Incidentally, the son is reminded that the most detestable of all voices is the voice of the donkey.

Allah’s admonition to human beings calling upon them to ponder whether it is not a glaring fact that He has subjugated all that is in the heavens and on earth and perfected His Graces on them [ayat 20].

When people are asked to follow the Commands of Allah Subhanahutalah, they refuse saying that they prefer to follow what they found their ancestors following, ignoring the fact that it is the Satan [the archenemy of human beings] which is leading them towards the torments of the fire in hell. Thus, the father warns his son to beware of Satan’s wicked suggestions. [ayat 21]

Ayat 22 is a reminder by Allah that whosoever submits him or herself to Allah i.e., follows His Directions purely for His sake without any show off or to gain fame and follows His Commands in accordance with the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) grasps the most trustworthy handhold. Thus the father directs his son to hold tight the Divine handhold by doing what He and His Blessed Apostle (pbuh) has asked us to do and refraining from doing what they have forbidden. Whilst doing so, one must bear in mind that to Allah, all matters - big or small, open or secret - have to return for His decision. This is what the father reminds his son.

Before concluding his advice, the father reminds his son that to Allah Subhanahutalah belongs whatsoever there is in the heavens and on the earth and that even if all the trees on the earth were to become pens and all  seas were to become ink, the Words of Allah Subhanahutalah cannot be and will  not be exhausted for He is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

Remember, dear readers, if children lead an un-Islamic life, parents will be questioned in the Hereafter and will be held responsible for the sins committed by the children in case they [the parents] had failed to give them sound advice to follow the commands of Allah Subhanahu wa ta’ala and the teachings of our holy Prophet (pbuh).