ISLAMIC - ISLAMIC
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PARENTS & CHILDREN'S .

 

1)           PARENTS RIGHTS

2)           CHILDREN'S RIGHT IN ISLAM

3)           ISLAMIC WAY OF RAISING CHILDREN'S

4)           Parents UNISLAMIC BEHAVIOUR

5)           Mothers: Is Heaven under their feet?

6)           DISOBEDIENCE TO PARENTS: A MAJOR SIN

7)           CUSTODY OF CHILD IF DIVORCED WOMAN REMARRIES

8)           BRINGING UP OF DAUGHTERS

9)           REWARD FOR RAISING THREE DAUGHTERS

10)       PARENTS' DU'AA AGAINST CHILDREN

11)        CHILDREN ISLAMIC EDUCATION IN THE WEST

12)        unlawful child before accepting islam

 

1. PARENTS RIGHTS

Question:

Could you please shed light on the importance of showing respect towards one’s parents in the light of the Qur’an and Hadith keeping in mind the rude behavior of children of the present times?

Answer:

Kindness to parents is mentioned as a duty of believers several times in the Quran. There are many Hadiths that encourage us to be very kind to our parents. 

Obedience must be discriminating. We obey our parents only in what is right and what is calculated to please Allah. But we should be kind to them in all situations. Allah Almighty says that if parents try hard to persuade their son to associate partners with Allah, then he must not obey them, but he should treat them in this world's life with kindness.

Almighty Allah has emphasized that kindness to parents is one of the most important qualities of believers. He says in the Qur'an:

"Thy Lord hath decreed, that ye worship none save Him, and (that ye show) kindness to parents. If one of them or both of them to attain old age with thee, say not ‘Fie’ unto them nor repulse them, but speak unto them a gracious word. (23) And lower unto them the wing of submission through mercy, and say: My Lord! Have mercy on them both as they did care for me when I was little.” (Al-Isra 17:23-24).  
Allah (swt) says: 

"And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents: in travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in years twain was his weaning: (hear the command), "Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents: to Me is (thy final) Goal.  (Luqman 31: 14)

"But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration), and follow the way of those who turn to Me: in the end the return of you all is to Me, and I will tell you all that ye did." (Luqman 31: 15) 
 
Kindness to parents is mentioned as a duty of believers several times in the Qur'an. There are many Hadiths that encourage us to be very kind to our parents. However, such kindness does not require a son or a daughter to obey his or her parents in whatever they may require of him or her. Suppose that a father asks his son to tell a lie, give false testimony, or drink or do something forbidden. If the son complies with his father's wish, then he commits a sin that will not be less grave simply because he is carrying out his father's orders. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said:
"No creature may be obeyed in what constitutes disobedience to the Creator."

That applies even in simple matters. Suppose a father arrives from abroad, having bought a bottle of some expensive alcoholic drink and he asks his son to deliver it to a friend or a neighbor. If his son complies with his wishes and simply takes the bottle to the person concerned, he commits a sin, because carrying an intoxicating drink to someone who will drink it is forbidden. The son must refuse to obey his father in such a situation.  

Parents are also responsible for what they demand of their children. It is not right of a father to require his son or daughter to do something that is contrary to Islamic principles, relying on the fact that his son or daughter should obey him. Indeed, if the parents do that, they fail in their duty to help their children choose only what Islam approves. Not only so, but they forfeits his rights to be obeyed by their children.

We must differentiate here between two things. Being kind to parents and total obedience to them. Obedience must be discriminating. We obey our parents only in what is right and what is calculated to please Allah. But we should be kind to them in all situations. Allah Almighty says that if parents try hard to persuade their son to associate partners with Allah, then he must not obey them, but he should

"…bear them company in this world's life with justice (kindness)..." (Luqman 31:15).

When the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was told by one of his female Companions that her mother, a non-believer, had come to visit her, he told her: "Be kind to your mother."  
  
Bukhari, Vol 8, Book 73. Good Manners and Form (Al-Adab). Hadith 002.  Narrated By Abu Huraira
: A man came to Allah's Apostle and said, "O Allah's Apostle! Who is more entitled to be treated with the best companionship by me?" The Prophet said, "your mother." The man said. "Who is next?" The Prophet said, "your mother." The man further said, "Who is next?" The Prophet said, "your mother." The man asked for the fourth time, "Who is next?" The Prophet said, "Your father."

Anyhow as per Islamic teaching, old parents are your heaven, you can earn it by serving them and being obedient to them in all cases except when they order something against Islamic guidelines.

So all these explanation to your brother as it is duty of all children to care of their parents. At the same time we would like to mention that: 

"Allâh burdens not a person beyond his scope...." (Al-Baqarah 2:286) 

Allah says: 
”....And there is no sin for you in the mistakes that ye make unintentionally, but what your hearts purpose (that will be a sin for you). Allah is Forgiving, Merciful”. (Al-Ahzab 33:5) 

Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said:
"The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended."(Bukhari)

Obeying and honoring one’s parents is a means of entering Paradise. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) quoted the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) as saying: "He is doomed, he is doomed, he is doomed." Then someone said, "Who, O Messenger of Allah?" He said, "The person whose parents, one or both of them, reach old age during his lifetime but he does not enter Paradise." (Reported by Muslim)

The Prophet said: “One of the major sins is to abuse one’s parents”. The Companions asked: “How is it possible for anyone to abuse one’s parents?” He replied: “To abuse another’s parents is tantamount to abusing one’s own parents because when you abuse other men’s parents, they would abuse yours in retaliation”. (Muslim, Bukhari and Abu Da’ud)

“Allah’s pleasure lies in the pleasure of one’s parents and His anger also lies therein” (Bukhari)

Excerpted, with slight modifications, from: www.islamonline.net

As for non-Muslim parents, a Muslim is required to deal with them honorably and kindly and to obey them as long as such obedience doesn't lead to disobeying Allah. Above all, clarity and transparency between us and our parents is very much needed, even if they are non-Muslims. Again, being a non-Muslim is not equal to being an enemy. So deal with parents honorably, and do entrust them to keep your stuff.

 

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2.  CHILDREN RIGHTS IN ISLAM

Question :

What are the responsibilities of parents in respect of Children Rights? What if we are living in foreign country and can’t educate our child Islamically?

Answer :

Let us first establish that in accordance with the true Islamic teaching, both male and female are alike in the sight of Allah, the Almighty. Children, according to Islam, are entitled to various rights. The foremost of these rights is the right to be properly raised and educated. This means that children should be given suitable, sufficient, sound and adequate religious, ethical and moral guidance to last them for their entire lives. In addition to that he must be given worldly education as much as child want to attain.

Parents Lack Of Interest

Children learn more from their parents as they are spending their full time at home with them. So it is the prime school for children in their early stage, as well as stage of teenage. Parents should give maximum time and adhere to Islamic teaching, regularly offering all prayers (and father praying at mosques, if it is close), reading Quran, not earning haram or eating haram food (and of course no drinking alcohol) etc. Treating well with child and with other family members and friends to let him understand good moral behaviours.

Due to lack of interest in children brought up, many Muslim parents wake up one day and find they have a rebellious teenager who they can't reason with, and who is intent on ignoring everyone. Many leave home in angry and ignore their parents completely and do whatever they feel good. This is a sad fact nowadays, and we should be worried about it.

Parents are responsible for children rights

Parents will be held responsible for delivering children rights. They should be engraved with true values, the meaning of right and wrong, true and false, correct and incorrect, appropriate and inappropriate, so forth and so on. Allah, the Almighty stated in the Glorious Qur’an:

"O ye who believe! Save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones." (At-Tahreem 66:6)

“…. And those who believe will say: "Verily, the losers are they who lose themselves and their families on the Day of Resurrection….’   (Ash-Shura 42:45)

Allah’s Apostle Mohammad (peace be upon him) also said: "Every one of you (people) is a shepherd. And every one is responsible for whatever falls under his responsibility. A man is like a shepherd of his own family, and he is responsible for them." (Bukhari and Muslim).

Children, therefore are a trust given to the parents. Parents will be responsible for this trust on the Day of Judgement. Parents are essentially responsible for the moral, ethical and basic essential religious teachings of their children.

If parents fulfill this responsibility, they will be free of the consequences on the Day of Judgement. The children will become better citizens and a pleasure to the eyes of their parents, first in this life, and in then in hereafter.

Allah, the Almighty stated in the Glorious Quran: “And those who believe and whose offspring follow them in Faith, to them shall We join their offspring (in heaven), and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything. Every person is a pledge for that which he has earned”. (At-Tur 52:21)

Moreover, Allah's messenger, (PBUH) said: "Upon death, man's deeds will (definitely) stop except for three deeds, namely: a continuous charitable fund, endowment or goodwill; knowledge left for people to benefit from; and pious righteous and God-fearing child who continuously prays Allah, the Almighty, for the soul of his parents."        (Muslim)

In fact, such a statement reflects the value of the proper upbringing of children. It has an everlasting effect, even after death.

Unfortunately, many parents from every walk of life, in every society, regardless of creed, origin, social and economical status, etc, have neglected this very important imposed right of their own children on them. Such individuals have indeed lost their children as a result of their own negligence. Such parents are so careless about the time their children spend with no benefit, the friends they associate with, the places they go to, etc. Such parents do not care, are totally indifferent about where their children go, when they come back and so forth and so on, causing the children to grow up without being any responsible and without caring any supervision. Such parents neglect even to instruct, direct or guide their children to proper way of life, even right attitudes towards others. However you may find these parents so careful about guarding their wealth and other activities. They exert every possible effort to lead a very successful life in terms of materialistic gains, although all this wealth is not actually theirs. No one will take wealth to the grave.

Children are to be well-fed, well-groomed, properly dressed for the weather and for appearance, well-taken care of in terms of housing and utilities. However It is more important to offer the child comparable care in terms of educational, religious knowledge, and spiritual guidance. The heart of a child must be filled with faith. A child’s mind must be engraved with proper guidance, knowledge and wisdom. Clothes, food, housing, schooling are not, by any means, an indication of proper care of the child. Proper basic Islamic knowledge, education and guidance are far more important to a child than food, grooming and appearance.

One of the due rights of children upon their parents is their spending for their welfare and well-being moderately. Over-spending or negligence is not condoned, accepted or even tolerated in Islam.

Children also have the right to be treated equally in terms of financial gifts. No one should be preferred over the others. All must be treated fairly and equally. Depriving, or banning the right of inheritance, or other financial gifts during the lifetime of the parents or the preference of a parent for one child over the other is considered according to Islam as an act of injustice.

Injustice definitely leads to an atmosphere of hatred, anger and dismay amongst the children in a household. In fact, such an act of injustice may, most likely, lead to animosity amongst the children, and consequently, this will affect the entire family environment. In certain cases a special child may show a tender care for his aging parent, for instance, causing the parent to grant such a child a special gift, or issue him the ownership of a house, a factory, a land, a farm, a car, or any other valuable items. Islam, however considers such a financial reward to such a caring, loving and perhaps obedient child, a wrong act. A caring child is entitled only to reward from Allah, the Almighty.

Islam sees that if parents fulfill their duties towards all their children in terms of providing them with necessary training, educational backing, moral, ethical and religious education, this will definitely lead to a more caring child, a better family atmosphere and a better social environment and awareness. On the other hand, any negligence in those parental duties can lead to the loss of a child or ill treatment of the parents at a later age.

Child is a Blessing from God

A child is a blessing from God to the parents. You can not make such a beautiful alive entity without command of God. There are instances when couples remain without a child for years and years, with no defect to either of them, and it has also happened with prophets. So a child is a one of the greatest gift to parents, for that they should always be thankful to God. However being a precious gift, it is parents responsibility that they should raise the child according to the guidelines Who has given this gift.

Birth of children

A child does not easily comes in this world. Mother has to have hard labour of keeping it in her womb for nine months. During this time she has to keep herself well guarded from the side effects of her eating, drinking, hard labour of home and outside jobs. Then after birth again she has to take care of her infant life by breast feeding (recommended in Islam) and also keeping it clean, its natural needs of health and also save it form ill effects of environment. For that Allah says to the child :

"And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents: in travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in years twain was his weaning: (hear the command), "Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents: to Me is (thy final) Goal."  (Luqman 31: 14)

Initial Child rights over Father

Following are the initial rights of child on father.

1)  It is Sunnah to do tahneek for the child when he is born: The scholars are agreed that it is mustahabb to do tahneek with dates for the child when he is born; if that is not possible then to use some similar kind of sweet. The dates should be chewed until they become soft enough to be swallowed, then the child’s mouth should be opened and a little of the dates put in his mouth.

2)  The child should be given a good name. It is mustahabb to name the child on the seventh day, but there is nothing wrong with naming him on the day of his birth

3)  It is Sunnah to shave the child’s head on the seventh day and to give the weight of the hair in silver in charity. 

4)  Haqiqa : Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Every child is in pledge for his ‘aqeeqah which should be slaughtered for him on the seventh day his head should be shaved and he should be named. (Narrated by Abu Dawood). Two sheep should be sacrificed for a boy and one for a girl.          

5)  Circumcision : It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “The fitrah is five things, or five things are part of the fitrah: circumcision, shaving the pubic hairs, plucking the armpit hairs, clipping the nails and trimming the moustache.” So if it is a boy, he must be circumcised within this period.

Child rights over mother

That she should take care of you when you are a child, breastfeeding and nurturing you. This is a well-known aspect of human nature that has been handed down from the beginning of creation.

She should bring you up in a righteous manner, for she will be responsible for that before Allah on the Day of Resurrection. You are part of her “flock” and she is your “shepherd”.

It was reported that ‘Abd-Allah ibn ‘Umar said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say,”Each of you is a shepherd and each of you is responsible for his flock. The imaam is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. A man is the shepherd of his family and is responsible for his flock. A woman is the shepherd of her husband’s house and is responsible for her flock. …..’” (Narrated by Bukhari, 853; Muslim, 1829)

Abu Hurairah narrated that a man came to Allah’s Messenger (saws) and said, "O Allah’s Messenger! Who is more entitled to be treated with the best companionship by me?" The Prophet (saws) said, "Your mother." The man said, "Who is next?" The Prophet (saws) said, "Your mother." The man further said, "Who is next?" The Prophet (saws) said, "Your mother." The man asked (for the fourth time), "Who is next?" The Prophet (saws) said, "Your father." (Bukhari and Muslim)

Allah says in Quran : "We have enjoined on man(be) kindness to his parents, in pain did his mother bear him, and in pain did she give him birth." (Al-Ahqaf 46:15)

Educating the Children

The most important and lasting gift or inheritance that we can give to our children is knowledge of Islam. It is our duty that we should educate our children with Islamic knowledge since as parents we are accountable to their success and failure. The Prophet (saws) makes it very clear that we are accountable to our respective families/children: Abdullah ibn Umar reported that he heard the Prophet Muhammad (saws) saying:

"Every one of you is a guardian, and responsible for what is in his custody. The ruler is a guardian of his subjects and responsible for them; a husband is a guardian of his family and is responsible for it; a lady is a guardian of her husband’s house and is responsible for it, and a servant is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it. A man is a guardian of his father’s property and is responsible for it so all of you are guardians and responsible for your wards and things under your care)." (Bukhâri 3/592)

Allah says in Quran : "Your riches and your children may be but a trial: whereas Allah, with Him is the highest Reward." [At-Taghabun 64:15]

Since our children are but a trial and that the highest reward is with Allah the Almighty, it is then our responsibility to guide our children to Islam. It is only through Islam that they can become righteous and be of service to Allah. We pass Allah’s trial once our children worship and please our Creator. He says :

 “O you who believe, protect yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is people and stone ………” [At-Tahreem 66: 6]

The best thing that we can give to our children is knowledge of Islam. It is the best education and the best means to fight ignorance and drive away evil. The Prophet (pbuh) says in the following hadith :

Amr bin Sa’id or Sa’id bin Al-‘Ast narrated that Allah’ Messenger (saws) said, "A father gives his child nothing better than a good education." (Tirmidhi and Baihaqi)

Islam is the only religion that clearly raises the status of the parents to a high degree and honor. In fact, Allah in many ayyats of the Qur’an has commanded us to please our parents after pleasing Him. After our firm belief in Him, our Creator has enjoined us to treat our parents with kindness and respect:

"….Worship none but Allah and be dutiful and treat with kindness your parents and kindred, and orphans and those in need; speak fair to the people; be steadfast in prayer; and give Zakat ..."   [Al-Baqarah 2:83]

Islam teaches us that it is for our success that we must obey Allah by showing our utmost kindness and respect to our parents. We must also obey them as long as they do not command us something that disobeys Allah. We have to remember that if we please them, we please Allah. This means, that through our parents we can attain Allah’s rewards in the eternal world:

Educating the Children should be done from the early age, starting with the Qur'aanic memorization, supplications, etiquettes and manners like what to say upon sneezing, eating, sleeping, going to the toilets etc.

They should be related stories of the Prophets of the past nations and specifically our Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). They must be sent to Islamic schools, which include Quranic classes, they must be taught the language of the Quran. One may also reward them financially for the completion of each step in their program. Parents should be very careful about, whom they mix with and with whom they be friend. As children pick up bad manners and bad language from their surrounding, it is responsibility of parents to make them understand, what are the effects of bad company.

The Prophet of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: “The example of a good companion in comparison with a bad one, is like that of the musk seller and the blacksmith's bellow; from the first you would either buy musk or enjoy its good smell, while the bellows would either burn your clothes or your house, or you get a bad nasty smell from it.” [Saheeh Bukharee]

Abdullah ibn Mas'ud narrated: "I asked the Prophet (saws) which deed is the dearest to Allah? He replied, "To offer salaat (the prayers) at there early fixed times." I asked, "What is the next (in goodness)?" He replied, "To be good and dutiful to your parents." I again asked, "What is the next (in goodness)? "He replied, "To participate in jihad (religious fighting) in Allah’s Cause." (Bukhari 1/505)

We must know that Islam teaches us to show goodness to our parents by including them in our daily prayers that Allah may forgive them and grant them His Mercy:

“And make yourself submissively gentle to them (parents)  with compassion, and say: O my Lord! have compassion on them, as they brought me up (when I was) little”. [Al-Isra 17:24)

The Prophet (saws) says in the following Hadith:

"A man will be raised some degrees in Paradise and he will say, ‘For what reason I am receiving this?’ He will be told, ‘Because of your son asking forgiveness for you.’" (Bukhari 1613)

Abu Hurairah narrated that Allah’ Messenger (saws) said, "When a man dies, accrual of merit in his favor from good deeds ceases except from three actions: 1. A charity which continues after his death; 2. Knowledge left behind from which men continue to benefit, and 3. Righteous offspring who pray for him." (Muslim 4005)

With well guided child, we and our righteous children will Insha Allah pass the real tests on the Day of Reckoning.

Encouraging Children To Pray

Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-Asr, narrated that the prophet of Allah said, "Command your children to make salah  (prayer)when they become seven years old, and spank them for it (salah) when they become ten years old, and arrange their beds (to sleep) separately. " (Abu Dawud)

Here are some advices for parents.

a)  Informal teaching should start when child starts to show interest, which usually occurs around the age of two.

b)  Let them pretend to copy salah (prayer, as they always copy parents actions)

c)  Invite them to pray along side and join the family congregational  prayer.

d) The next step is to learn al-Fatihah which should begin around the age of three or four.

e) The practice session should only last between 5 to 15 minutes. At this age consistency is more important than length of practice.

f)  Educational products can assist parents in achieving success with their children because children generally learn in different ways therefore introduction of material through different format (video, coloring book, going to the mosque) will help ease and reinforce the learning process. Also their toys must be selective, so as to avoid the unlawful.

g) One of the most important thing that a parent should do is to praise the child for each accomplished task and encouragement to achieve more success.

Television is one of the biggest negative influences on our children and is responsible for corrupting their minds about the environment they live in. They should not be allowed to see TV programs which are indecent, arrogant, or of no beneficial to their brought up. TURN TV OFF IF YOU THINK IT IS NECESSARY.

Teaching them good manners

One cannot underestimate the importance of instilling strong Eman in our children. Strong belief in Allah will deter them from wrongdoings. Natural instinct often tells us, something is right or not. Knowledge determines right from wrong and in how to react to problems, gives children confidence to teach others and defend themselves.

We should never presume that our children will only learn from the good examples of their parents only. In the modern world, parents only spend a limited amount of time with their children; whereas society, other Muslims and the general non-Muslim community all instill values and their ideologies into our children mind, influencing their behaviour. Further TV, schools, friends, neighbours also effect his/her mind.

Children now a days face many more hardships than ever before with such a changing world. How can we expect them to defend and follow Islam if they don’t really understand the how’s and why’s? Consistency is the key with everything.

Children Responsibility to parents

Almighty Allah has emphasized that kindness to parents is one of the most important qualities of believers. He says in the Qur'an:

"Thy Lord hath decreed, that ye worship none save Him, and (that ye show) kindness to parents. If one of them or both of them to attain old age with thee, say not ‘Fie’ unto them nor repulse them, but speak unto them a gracious word. And lower unto them the wing of submission through mercy, and say: My Lord! Have mercy on them both as they did care for me when I was little.” (Al-Isra : 23-24).  

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“…. 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”  (Al-Israa’ 17:23)

If Allah has forbidden us even to say “uff” [paraphrased as “a word of disrespect” in the translation of the meaning of the aayah] to our parents, then how about someone who curse, abuse or hits them? Remember that as per one hadith, the interpretation of which is that, even if child sees his parents with love, he gets the reward of Hajj Mabroor (Hajj accepted by Allah)

Conclusion and Recommendations

Knowledge of Islam tells us that by guiding our children to Islam, we do not only respond to the duty that Allah and His Messenger (saws) enjoin upon us i.e., to be accountable to our children; but also, we expect subsequent rewards for raising righteous children. If we want our children to be righteous and be successful Muslims, we must learn and teach our children authentic knowledge of Islam, which is one that is based on the Qur’an and the Sunnah.

For those of us who can not teach our respective children for some reasons, who find no time or incapable to teach their own children, it is a must that :

*  We send them to standard quality Islamic schools where boys are separated from girls. If such schools are not available in our area, then we can opt for Islamic distance schooling or Home Education.

*  Another alternative is for us parents, is to hire competent Muslims teachers who can teach our children Islam during weekends. To minimize cost, we can organize weekend Islamic schools within our community by making use of the existing public schools. All we need is to make a request to the school administrator for the use of some rooms of the school buildings. If this is not possible then, we can make use of the existing mosques in the area.

*  Aside from the formal schools and/or weekend Islamic schools, we can encourage our children to seek knowledge of Islam by any of the following means:

 

1)    Attendance to Islamic lectures, forums and seminars,

2)    Reading books and other reading materials on Islam,

3)    Listening to radio and television programs on Islam,

4)    Buying books, booklets, magazines and other reading materials on Islam,

5)    Purchasing other learning media (e.g., CDs, Videos and cassette tapes) on Islam.

6)    Giving them proper access to the Islamic reading materials available in the Internet (i.e., Islamic websites). All these various opportunities to acquiring knowledge of Islam are blessing from Allah, Who bestows knowledge to whom He guides to Islam.

Parents Living in foreign countries

Islam does not forbid non Islamic schooling and knowledge. However if for any reason, parents are unable UPBRINGING their children in Islamic way because they are living in a foreign country, they should sacrifice their love to send their children to their grand parents in Islamic country. Islam recognizes that mother respect for child is three times of father because of her difficulties in giving birth and bringing him up, same way it is also part of her sacrifice that if she thinks that her child is not getting his due Islamic education at her residing place, then convince husband (or husband convince wife) to send the child to a place wherever it is possible to get good education and Islamic behaviour. (May be grand parents)

Remember children rights supercede your love rights when it comes to their acquiring religious knowledge and Islamic cultural values. Your sacrifice is in the benefit to you and to your child, and you will get a great reward from Allah on Judgement Day and also here in the shape of a good Muslim obedient child.

Indeed, Allah is Most Gracious, Most Merciful, He has opened for us various ways and means to learn Islam.

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3. ISLAMIC WAY OF RAISING CHILDREN

Question:                                                                                                  

Could you please clarify in detail the Islamic way of raising children?

Answer :

Indeed, Allah creates children with pure innate nature, and whatever defects that happen later is the result of bad education. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, is reported to have said: “Every child is born on Fitrah (man’s innate disposition to monotheism), his parents make him Jewish, Christian or a fire worshipper.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

That is why Islam has ordered parents to take care of their children and to bring them up according to the Islamic manners.

Focusing more on the very interesting question you have raised, we would like to cite the following:

Allah Almighty has entrusted parents with their children. Parents bear the responsibility to raise up their children in the Islamic way. If they do that they will be blessed in this life and in the Hereafter, and if they don't, they will get bad result during their life and in the Hereafter.

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said:
“All of you are guardians and all of you are responsible for things under your guardianship; the ruler is a guardian (managing his state’s affairs) and he is responsible for things under his care, the man is a guardian over his family and responsible for them, the woman is a guardian of her husband's house and she is responsible for it. All of you are guardians and responsible for things under your control.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, did not excuse any one from responsibility that Allah has put on every individual to build the Islamic society: the ruler is responsible: the man and woman are responsible.... all within their capabilities, domains, and authorities... and the loss of Islam from our Muslim Ummah these days is nothing but a result of the neglect of responsibility.

Men and women, fathers and mothers share the responsibility to raise up, educate, and build the new generation in the correct method and the right way.

Man has in him the good and bad tendencies, so parents must encourage and grow the good tendencies in the child so he can become a useful person that helps himself and his people. Referring to this, Allah Almighty says: “O' you who believe, protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones ….”  (At-Tahreem 66:6)

The protection of yourself and your family from Hell-Fire won't be with anything but good education, the practice of good morals, and the guidance to nobility.

Islam does not distinguish between male and female with regard to the education requirements. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said: “Whoever has a daughter, tutors her on good morals, educates her well and feeds her properly; she will be a protection for him from Hell-Fire.”

What do we mean by good education? The good education means the physical, mental and moral preparation of the child so he can become a good individual in the good society.

Methods for Moral Upbringing:

1)  Showing the values of good deeds and their effects on the individuals and society; also showing the effects of bad deeds, all within the child's capability of understanding.

2)  Parents should be a good example in their behavior because children like to imitate their parents in their sayings and their deeds.

3)  Teaching the child the religious principles and tutoring him in worship, taking into account the child's capability of understanding. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have said: “Order your children to pray at the age of seven.”

4)  Treating children nicely and kindly. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) taught us that practically. When he was praying as an Imam with the people, his grandson Al-Hasan, son of his daughter Fatimah, may Allah be pleased with them rode his back while he was bowing. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, lengthened his bow. When he finished his prayer, some attending Companions said, “You lengthened your bow?” Then the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, answered, “My grandson rode my back and I hate hastening him”

5)  One of the important things that parents must teach their children is to choose the good company and to the avoid the bad one, because children are always influenced by the company they keep. The bad behavior can be easily transmitted through bad company. So the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, warned us by saying, “Man is inclined to get influenced by his friend's manners, so one must be careful in choosing friends.” (Reported by Abu Dawud & At-Tirmidhi)

6)  Encouraging the child's sense of belonging to the Muslim Ummah, by teaching him of the brotherhood between Muslims, teaching him to care for Muslims in any land, and that he is part of the Muslim body, to feel joy when Muslims are joyous, to feel sad for Muslims' sadness, and to do best to achieve the Muslim Ummah’s goals. All of this can be done practically through:

A. Taking children to Mosques and introducing them to their brother in Islam regardless of race, language, or origin.

B. Teaching the children the history of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, and his Companions and the history of Islam, bearing in mind the child's capability of understanding.

C. Encouraging children to sympathize with Muslim problems and to contribute to the solutions such as the poverty problem and to donate some money to the hungry Muslim children.

D. Taking part in the celebrations and festivals with Muslims, and sharing picnics and creating ties with their Muslim brothers of the same age.   

7) Building in children the feeling of love of Allah, His Prophet, Muslims, and all people. This love will lead to special behavior towards all those loved.

These are general guidelines to raise our children Islamically, so every Muslim must take care of his children and know the correct path that must be followed. This will help us to do the job we are entrusted to do as Allah prescribed, as well as the responsibility the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, has clarified, with aim of protecting the future generations of Muslims, as Allah Almighty says: “And Say Do deeds! Allah will see your deeds, and (so will) his Messenger and the believers. And you will be brought back to the All-Knower of the unseen and the seen. Then He will inform you of what you used to do “ (At-Tawbah 9:105)

Excerpted, with slight modifications, from: www.islamonline.net

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4. Parents UNISLAMIC BEHAVIOUR

Question:

I have a very difficult time dealing with my family. I disagree with their actions because I feel they are unislamic. Talking it out is not a solution because it goes no where. What should I do?

Answer:

Your duty as a good Muslim in this matter is two folds:

1-    You have to give your parents ultimate respect and treat them with kindness because they are your parents. This kind of respectful treatment is actually an act of worship and it is also an order stated by Allah Himself in the Quran (refer to Surah al-Israa 17: 23-25). No snapping at them or raising your voice at them. The only time you are allowed to disobey them is when they ask you to do an act that is a disobedience to Allah, such as not to pray or not to fast etc.

2-    You have to keep inviting to Islam in the most effective way, and this way varies between one person and the other; so you should find the one that works best with them. Never give up because, first of all, it is always very difficult to bring change to the people who are closest to you, and second, because the Muslim’s duty is to invite people to Islam regardless of the outcome. The outcome comes from Allah, but the duty is to work for the goal. Be patient and ask Allah with all your sincere heart to guide your parents.

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5. Mothers: Is Heaven under their feet?

Question :

As-salamu `alaykum. I am the only Muslim in my family and I read the Hadith that Paradise lies under the feet of the mother. What is the meaning of this Hadith, and is this also true of a mother who is non-Muslim? Jazakum Allah khayran.

Answer :

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger 

Dear questioner, thank you very much for having confidence in us, and we hope our efforts, which are purely for Allah's Sake, meet your expectations

Indeed, Islam orders us to be kind and loyal to parents, whether or not they are Muslim. Referring to this, Allah Almighty says:

“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” (Al-Isra’ 17:23) 

However, favoring parents and being dutiful to them is not allowed if it involves disobedience to Allah.

There is an authentic Hadith and it is mentioned in many books of Hadith. In one version reported by Ibn Majah it is mentioned that the Prophet told a person,

“Be at your mother’s feet and there is the Paradise.” (Ibn Majah, Sunan, Hadith no. 2771)

“Heaven lies under mother’s feet”. (Tabarani)

The meaning of the Hadith is that you should serve your mother and take good care of her. Obey her as long as she does not tell you to do something haram.

However one should be careful to the rights of both father and mother because any one disrespected and undutiful, may cause one in trouble on The Judgment Day. Hadith says

“Allah’s pleasure lies in the pleasure of one’s parents and His anger also lies therein” (Bukhari)

It does not make any difference whether the mother is Muslim or non-Muslim. It is the duty of the children to be respectful to their parents, especially mothers. Allah says in the Qur’an, 

“And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents: in travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in years twain was his weaning: (hear the command), "Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents: to Me is (thy final) Goal”  (14) “But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration), and follow the way of those who turn to Me: in the end the return of you all is to Me, and I will tell you all that ye did"  (Luqman 31:14-15)

Hadith says:

“The greatest of major sins is to associate anyone with Allah and to disobey one’s parents. (Bukhari and Muslim)

 

“Allah’s pleasure lies in the pleasure of one’s parents and His anger also lies therein” (Bukhari)

 

If the mother is a pious Muslim woman, then she is the woman of Heaven and in her service indeed there is Heaven . But if she is not a pious Muslimah or if she is not a Muslimah, still your Heaven is in her service because you serve her in obedience to Allah. The Heaven of the children is near the feet of their mothers, but the Heaven of the mothers is in their own obedience to Allah.

 

Note:

 

Parents are our Heaven and Hell. It is understandable, though, supplication by the mother (or father) of a dutiful son or daughter is more likely to be answered by Allah and in that way it will provide him/her with protection against evils. This should never be construed to mean that one can go around indulging in sins and hope that mother's supplication will keep Allah's punishment away. On the Judgment day, all good and bad deeds including ibadat (worshipping) will be considered together and then it depends on His mercy, what to decide.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.

 

Excerpted with slight modifications from: www.onislam.net

 

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6. DISOBEDIENCE TO PARENTS: A MAJOR SIN

It is the right of parents that their children should treat them with kindness, obedience, and honor. Devotion to parents is a natural instinct which must be strengthened by deliberate actions. The rights of the mother are stressed more because of her suffering during pregnancy and childbirth, her suckling of the child, and her role in rearing it. In the words of Allah Ta'ala: And We have enjoined on man kindness to his parents. His mother carries him in pain and she gives birth to him in pain, and (the period) of carrying him and weaning him is thirty months....”  (Al-Ahqaf 46:15)

There are many hadiths in this respect:

Once a man came to the Prophet (peace be on him) and asked, 'Who is most deserving of my good companionship?' 'Your mother,' replied the Prophet (peace be on him). 'Who next?' the man asked. 'Your mother,' replied the Prophet (peace be on him). 'Who next?' he asked. 'Your mother,' replied the Prophet (peace be on him). 'Who next?' asked the man. 'Your father,' replied the Prophet. (Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim.)

The Prophet (peace be on him) declared disobedience to parents to be a major sin, second only to ascribing partners to Allah, as has been stated in the Qur'an. Al-Bukhari and Muslim report his saying, 'Shall I not inform you about the three major sins?' Those who were present replied, 'Yes, O Messenger of Allah.' He said 'Associating partners with Allah and disobedience to parents,' and sitting up from the reclining position, he continued, 'and telling lies and false testimony; beware of it.'

He also said, "Three persons shall not enter the Garden: the one who is disobedient to his parents, the pimp, and the woman who imitates men.'' (Reported by al-Nisai, al-Bazzar on the authority of excellent transmitters, and al-Hakim)

and, "Allah defers (the punishment of) all sins to the Day of Resurrection excepting disobedience to parents, for which Allah punishes the sinner in this life before his death."(Reported by al-Hakim, on the authority of sound transmitters.)

Moreover, Islam emphasizes treating parents kindly, especially when they grow old. As their strength fails, they require more attention and care, and more consideration of their even more sensitive feelings. Concerning this the Qur'an says, “Thy Lord hath decreed that you worship none but Him and that you be kind to parents. If one or both of them attain old age with thee, do not say a word of annoyance (Literally, Do not say “Uff”, an expression of annoyance)  to them nor repulse them, but speak to them in gracious words (23) and in mercy lower to them the wing of humility and say, My Lord, bestow Thy mercy othem, as they cherished me when I was little ....”   (Al-Isra 17:23-24)

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7. CUSTODY OF CHILD IF A DIVORCED WOMAN REMARRIES

Question :

I am divorced and my x-wife. My x-wife has remarried to a Muslim. We have four sons ages 1, 3, 5, & 7. I have requested majority custody of our sons, but she has refused and has made it very difficult for me to visit with our sons. What are my rights and obligations under these circumstances?

Answer : Praise be to Allah .  

The mother has more right to custody of her children before the age of seven so long as she does not remarry, in which case the right passes to the one who is most entitled to that after her, because Ahmad (6707) and Abu Dawood (2276) narrated from ‘Abd-Allah  ibn ‘Amr that a woman said: “O Messenger of Allah , my womb was a vessel for this son of mine and my breasts gave him (milk) to drink, and my lap was a refuge for him, but now his father has divorced me and he wants to take him away from me.” The Messenger of Allah  (peace and blessings of Allah  be upon him) said to her: “You have more right to him so long as you do not remarry.” This hadeeth was classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood

It is obligatory to allow the father to see his children and to ask how they are, whether they are in the custody of the mother or of someone else. 

Because the mother’s right to custody is lost when she remarries, then it should be given to the one who is most entitled to that after her. There was some difference of opinion among the fuqaha’ as to who has more right after the mother. Some scholars said that the right passes to the mother’s mother. Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah was of the view that the father has more right than the mother’s mother, on which basis custody should be given to father. Al-Sharh al-Mumti’, 6/26, complete edition). 

Similarly if the mother’s mother is a kaafirah or an immoral person, then custody must be given to the father, even according to those who say that the mother’s mother has more right than the father. 

It should be noted that what is meant by custody is keeping and raising the child. Hence a person’s right to custody is lost if he is immoral and corrupt, or careless and heedless, or if he travels a great deal which will harm his children’s interests. 

The parents should cooperate in this matter, and pay attention to the child’s interests, so that their disputes will not adversely affect the children. 

There is no Quranic verse concerning this matter which specifies who is more entitled to custody, but the following verses should be sufficient for the Muslim: 

“….And whatsoever the Messenger (Muhammad) gives you, take it; and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it). And fear Allah ; verily, Allah  is Severe in punishment”  (Al-Hashr 59:7) 

“It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allah  and His Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allah  and His Messenger, he has indeed strayed into a plain error”  (Al-Ahzaab 33:36) 

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah  be upon him) ruled that the mother loses the right to custody if she remarries, as stated in the hadeeth quoted above, so the believing woman has to accept that and submit. 

Maintenance of children is obligatory upon the father according to scholarly consensus, whether he keeps his wife or divorces her, and whether the wife is poor or rich. So she is not obliged to spend on the children if the father is around. 

If the children are in the custody of a divorced woman, then their father must support them, and the mother who has custody of a child who is still breastfeeding has the right to ask for payment for nursing the child. 

If one of the parents fails to educate the child and raise him in accordance with Islamic teachings, then he/she is sinning and has no guardianship (wilaayah) over child. Anyone who does not do his duties as a guardian has no guardianship.

And Allah  knows best.

Excerpted, with slight modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/

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8. BRINGING UP OF DAUGHTERS

Daughters in Muslim society are cared from the very beginning. They are treated as a gift and blessing of God, and it is parents responsibility to raise her with chaste and get her educated and married with right person. She should be given knowledge of Islam (as much as possible) along with the education of present society. They are raised with special care of her modesty, even she is never seen naked in her infancy and childhood by her father or brothers. She is well clothed (not exposing her body parts figures expressly) when she is getting adult. Also getting her known the requirement of a girl respect, safety and keeping away from non mahram men till married.

Parents have great responsibility and reward for upbringing children.

"O ye who believe! Save yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones." (At-Tahreem 66:6)

The pious and good children will be left over fro them who will pray Allah for them after their death.

Allah's messenger, (PBUH) said: "Upon death, man's deeds will (definitely) stop except for three deeds, namely: a continuous charitable fund, endowment or goodwill; knowledge left for people to benefit from; and pious righteous and God-fearing child who continuously prays Allah, the Almighty, for the soul of his parents."  (Muslim)

There is very high reward for girls upbringing and getting them married.

“One who trains and educates 3 or 2 daughters or sisters out of fear of Allah, will go to Paradise (even if the number is one)”

“Bringing up of daughters is a test; one who passes the test will be safe from Hell”

So parents are given good news of getting heaven in reward for upbringing girls and getting them married. Can you imagine such reward in western thinking. No, not at all, because over there girls are exposed to whatever they like, specially no care of their modesty and virginity.

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9. REWARD FOR RAISING THREE DAUGHTERS

Question :

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever has three daughters and is patient with them and gives them to drink and clothes them, they will be a protection for him against the Fire.” Will they be a protection against the Fire for their father only, or will their mother have a share in that too? I have three daughters, praise be to Allah.

Answer : Praise be to Allah.  

The hadeeth applies to both the father and the mother. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) also said, “Whoever has two daughters and treats them kindly, they will be a protection for him against the Fire.” The same applies if he has sisters or paternal or maternal aunts etc., and he treats them kindly, we hope that he will attain Paradise for that. For when he treats them kindly, he deserves a great reward and to be protected from the Fire, so he will be kept away from the Fire because of his good deed. 

This applies only to Muslims, because if a Muslim does these good deeds seeking the pleasure of Allah, he will have earned salvation from the Fire. There are many means of gaining salvation from the Fire and admittance to Paradise, so the believer should try to attain many of them. Islam itself is the only means and is the basic cause of gaining admittance to Paradise and salvation from the Fire. 

There are actions which, if the Muslim does them, he will enter Paradise and be saved from Hell, such as taking care of daughters or sisters, then they will be a protection for him against the Fire. Whoever dies leaving behind three little ones who have not yet reached the age of puberty, they will be a protection for him against the Fire. They said, “O Messenger of Allah, what about two?” He said, “And two.” They did not ask him about one. It was narrated in a saheeh report that he (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Allah says, if I take from My slave the one whom he loves most in this world and he bears that with patience seeking reward from Me, he will have no less a reward than Paradise.”

So Allah explains that the believing slave has no less a reward with Him than Paradise, if He takes one whom he loves of the people of this world, and he bears that with patience and seeks reward. One of our little ones is included in this hadeeth, if Allah takes him and causes him to die, and his father or mother or both bear that with patience and seek reward, then they will have Paradise. This is a great bounty from Allah. The same applies to husbands, wives and all other relatives and friends, if they are patient and seek reward then they are included in this hadeeth, so long as they take care to avoid anything which could prevent that, such as dying committing major sin. We ask Allah to keep us safe and sound. 

Majmoo’ Fataawa wa Maqaalaat Mutanawwi’ah li Samaahat al-Shaykh al-‘Allaamah ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn ‘Abd-Allah ibn Baaz (may Allah have mercy on him), vol. 4, p. 375.

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10. PARENTS’ DU’AA’ AGAINST CHILDREN

Question :

What is the ruling on parent’s du’aa’s against their children, which are sometimes said with no reason. Are they answered?

Answer : Praise be to Allah.  

Children are one of the blessings of this worldly life, as Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“Wealth and children are the adornment of the life of this world ….”    (Al-Kahf 18:46) 

They are the apple of their parent’s eye, the joy of their hearts, so how can they pray against them? 

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) forbade praying against one’s children, one’s wealth and one’s own self, lest that be at a time when du’aa’s are answered. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Do not pray against yourselves, do not pray against your children, do not pray against your wealth, lest that coincides with a time when Allah is asked and He gives, so He answers your prayer.”  Narrated by Muslim (3014). 

The parent’s du’aa’ for or against his child is answered. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Three prayers are undoubtedly answered: the prayer of one who is wronged, the prayer of the traveller and the prayer of a father for his child.” Narrated by Ibn Maajah (3862); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth al-Saheehah (596). The version narrated by Imam Ahmad says: “the prayer of a father against his child.” 

A mistake that is made by many fathers and mothers is that they pray against their children if the latter do something that makes them angry. What they should do is pray for them to be guided and for Allah to set their affairs straight. 

By His mercy, Allah does not answer the du’aa’ of parents against their children, if it is at a time of anger, because Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“And were Allah to hasten for mankind the evil (they invoke for themselves and for their children, while in a state of anger) as He hastens for them the good (they invoke) then they would have been ruined. So We leave those who expect not their Meeting with Us, in their trespasses, wandering blindly in distraction”  (Yoonus 10:11) 

Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said in his Tafseer (2/554): 

Here Allah tells us of His forbearance and kindness towards His slaves, for He does not answer them when they pray against themselves or their wealth or their children at moments of anger. He knows that they do not really mean any ill, so He does not answer them out of kindness and mercy, as He does when they pray for themselves or their wealth or their children for goodness, blessing and growth. End quote. 

And Allah knows best.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/en/

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11. CHILDREN ISLAMIC EDUCATION IN THE WEST

Question :

How do we as Muslims living in the west maintain an Islamic Education for our children. Primary and secondary education upto the age of 15/16 may be provided in Muslim schools (which are also very expensive), but as for Higher Education there is no such Islamic Institute. Even on the secondary school level on the agenda of Curriculum, we do not have books that deal with the branches of knowledge that are available in secular institutes, such as; Political science, Sociology, Psychology, Pedagogy.

Please advise on how we should go about bringing about an Islamic Education system for our Youth. In the west (bearing in mind that it is near Impossible for us to migrate to Arab/Muslim countries because of the restrictions on immigration etc.)

Answer : Praise be to Allah.  

In order to preserve the structure of the Muslim family in the kaafir countries, we need to meet a number of conditions and requirements, both within the home and outside it:

Within the home:

It is essential for parents to uphold the habit of praying regularly in the mosque with their children; if there is no mosque nearby, then they must pray in jamaa’ah at home.

1. They have to read Quran and listen to its recitation daily.

2. They must eat meals together.

3. They must speak in the language of the Quran as much as they can.

4. They must uphold the good manners prescribed by the Lord of the Worlds for families and in social settings; these include those that are to be found in Soorat al-Noor.

5. They should not let themselves or their children watch immoral and corrupt movies.

6. Their children have to sleep at home and should stay home as much as possible, to protect them from the influences of the bad environment outside. They should be very strict in not allowing their children to sleep outside the home (“sleepovers”).

7. They should avoid sending their children to universities far from home where they would have to stay in university accommodation, otherwise we will lose our children, who will be assimilated into the kaafir society.

We have to be careful to eat only halaal food and the parents must avoid using all kinds of haraam things such as cigarettes, marijuana and other things which are widely available in kaafir countries.

Outside the home:

1. We must send our children to Islamic schools from kindergarten to the end of secondary school (high school).

2. We must also send them to the mosque as much as possible, to pray Jumu’ah and other prayers in jamaa’ah, and to attend lectures, halaqahs and study circles, etc.

3. We must establish educational and sporting activities for children and youth in places that are supervised by Muslims.

4. Fathers and mothers should strive to go to the Holy Places to perform the rituals of ‘Umrah and the obligations of Hajj, accompanied by their children.

5. Training children to speak about Islam in simple language which adults and children, Muslim and non-Muslim, can understand.

6. Training children to memorize Quran and sending some of them – if possible – to a Muslim Arab country so that they can gain an understanding of the religion, then come back to be daa’iyahs who are equipped with knowledge of Islam and the language of the Quran.

7. Encouraging children to marry early so as to protect their religious and worldly interests. We have to encourage them to marry Muslim girls from families who are known for their religious commitment and good attitudes.

8. We have to avoid using the number 9/11 and calling the police to come to the house to resolve conflicts. If conflicts arise, we must get in touch with a responsible member of the Muslim community or with wise Muslims to help resolve the conflict.

9. Not attending parties where there is dancing, music and singing, or joining in celebrations of immorality or the festivals of kufr; stopping our children, with wisdom, from going to church on Sundays with Christian students.

And Allah is the Source of strength and the Guide to the Straight Path.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/en/ 

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12. unlawful child before accepting Islam

Question:

If she committed zinaa when she was not Muslim and had a child, then she became Muslim, what should she tell other people and the child himself?

Answer:  Praise be to Allah.

Zinaa (fornication or adultery) is a crime that is forbidden by divine laws and rejected by all wise and sane people, even if they are not Muslim. Allah has condemned those who do this in many aayaat of the Qur’aan and in numerous ahaadeeth of His Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). He has threatened those who do this with severe punishment and disgrace in this world and the next – except those who repent, have faith and do righteous deeds, for Allah will accept their repentance. The gate of repentance is open, but it is a condition of repentance that one should regret the deed and give it up. Islam wipes out whatever came before.

With regard to the child, he belongs to his mother, and should not be named after his father. This is the ruling concerning the illegitimate child: he should not be named after his father because he was conceived in fornication, not in wedlock. It is obligatory to take care of this child and bring him up with Islamic manners and morals. Because this immoral act has occurred, you must repent from it, but you should cover it up and not disclose it; you do not have to tell the people the truth. If the child wants to know the truth, you can tell him in an appropriate manner, and let him know that what happened was in the days of kufr (before you became Muslim), and that when a person repents and becomes Muslim, this wipes out whatever happened before.

The child does not bear any responsibility for what happened, and as long as his mother has become Muslim, there is no grounds for rebuking or punishing her. It is obligatory to accept the will and decree of Allah, and if this child does righteous deeds he will enter Paradise. No soul is made to bear the burdens of another.

We ask Allah to keep you safe and sound and to forgive you.

Excerpted, with some modifications, from: http://islamqa.com/en/

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