Raising our Children in Islam
Allah (swt) has entrusted us with children. Also, He has chosen for us (al-Islam) as a complete way of life. So, we bear the responsibility to raise our children according to the teachings and rules of Islam. But how can we achieve this goal? In bringing up our children, whether in the US or anywhere else, our goal should be to help them get the best in this world and the best in the hereafter: success and happiness in this life and salvation and paradise in the hereafter. To raise our children three things are essential: (1) A successful parent role. (2) A persistent Mosque activity. (3) An organized, united and dynamic Muslim community. This khut’bah we will look at the first factor in a little more detail.
The Role of the Family in Raising the Children
The Role of the Family in Raising the Children is the first factor, which influence the behavior of the children in their early childhood. Rasul Allah (saas) told us that, “Every newborn is born in the natural state of goodness (the pure nature) (the Fitrah, which is Islam), and his parents would either make him a Jew, a Christian, or a fire worshipper.” (B. & M.). So, the first influence on the children is the parents, then the older siblings. This is a reality, which we can not escape. This influence starts in the early life of the child.
The Role of the Family in Raising the Children is a responsibility and the family will be accountable for it. Rasul Allah (saas) said: “Each and every one of you is responsible and accountable for his responsibility. So the man is responsible in his house and accountable for his family, the woman is responsible in her husband’s house and accountable for her husband’s family” (B. & M.). Rasul Allah (saas) did not relieve anyone from responsibility and everyone will be accountable for it in this life and in the Hereafter.
By performing this role we will be blessed in this life and in the Hereafter, and if we don’t, we will get bad and harmful result during our life and in the Hereafter. Allah (swt) says in Surat a-Tah’reem, (verse 6), which is translated as, “O believers! Protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones.”
Raising Children based on Islam is one of the greatest duties of the Muslim family.
Any family will not be considered a Muslim family until it does this task properly. Does raising children based on Islam occur with wishful thinking? Does raising children based on Islam occur with sincerity? Does raising children based on Islam occur with the will only? Does raising children based on Islam occur through advice from the parents to their children that they should be holding onto Islam and good morals? Raising children based on Islam will occur only when the family conducts all its affairs according to the teachings of Islam and when it manifests the Islamic values in the way it conducts these affairs. It is a must that we have to present the good practical example in our life.
Due to the importance of the good practical example, Rasul Allah (saas) was a practical example for their followers; they demonstrated in their lives what they called for. Rasul Allah (saas) was the best practical example for the Muslims to follow.
Allah (swt) says in Surat al-Ah’Zab, (verse 21), what can be translated as, “Indeed in Rasul Allah (Muhammad) you have a good example to follow for him who hopes in (the meeting with) Allah and the Last Day and remembers Allah much.” Rasul Allah (saas) always demonstrated the Islam that he called for, and the Qur’an that he delivered. So, he was a living example of the Qur’an that walks on earth and lives amongst the people. About this, A’ishah (raa) replied to the one who asked about the morals of the Rasul Allah (saas): “His morals were the Qur’an”(Reported by Muslim). So, the good practical example is necessary to make the upbringing process successful. In this day and time just saying to a child “just do it” is not enough. Having a strong family unit is vital to teaching children the important lessons of life. There are three things you can do to help your children and your family grow close together. (1) Set a good example (2) Set a good example (3) Set a good example.
A Famous child psychiatrist used to say to groups of parents: “Get out your paper and pencils. I am going to tell you the three most important things you will ever need to know about raising children.” The parents would wait breathlessly for his words of wisdom. Then he would say, “Example, example, example.” Similarly, a family counselor and author about parenting, has often said: “The only way to raise a decent human being is by being one.” These two observers are correct: what children become probably has most of all to do with the example set by those who raise them: “Monkey see, monkey do.” “Do as I say, not as I do.”
These sayings describe two ways of teaching: by example and by preaching. Young children usually learn by the “monkey see, monkey do” method. In case you doubt the importance of teaching by example, think about your own childhood. How were you most influenced to become the person you now are; for better or for worse? Was it mostly what you learned in school? Was it mostly your grade-school and high-school and adult friends? Was it mostly movies or television? Chances are that the person you have become was influenced mostly by the example set by your parents and other people who were close to you when you were young.
The parents are the first ones that give the good practical example to their children when they order them to do good and refrain from evil. They are the ones that also give the poor and contradictory example for their children when they advise them to do good but they themselves do not do good, and advise them to refrain from doing evil, but they themselves do evil. When the parents offer the contradictory example, they undermine all what they advised and taught to their children. This is because the children will think that what their parents are calling for is nothing but ideals that can not be implemented in life. So, to all the fathers and mothers out there, when you order your children to do good and refrain from doing evil, you yourselves should practice what you are preaching, and show your children that what you are calling for are not ideals and that you are already implementing that. Otherwise, you will lose the creditability and affect of your words. For example: When you order your children to pray when they are seven like Rasul Allah (saas) told us, show them that you are promptly praying five times a day. Also, show them the importance of Salah through your deeds. Otherwise, what is the benefit to order them to pray if the children see their parents slacking off their Salah? To the Muslim father and mother, if you want your children to keep away from the bad company and stick with the good company, you yourselves should do that first, and help them and encourage them to find the good one. If you want your children to refrain from lying and to be truthful, then you yourselves should be that way. If you want you children to stay away from prohibitions, you should be away from them first. There are many examples. This is only a few.
Briefly speaking, we must present to our children a good practical example so that they can follow. Raising them any other way will not work because the good example is the only way to implant the values and virtues in the individual’s life.
What is the ruling on watching television?
Televisions and its like, such as screens of computers, that display numerous programs are not haram in themselves, but what is haram is showing programs that go against the shari`ah, such as showing women who are dressed and undressed, the drinking of alcohol, relations of love and intimacy that are against the shari`ah, and singing that is accompanied by haram music. Showing all of these things is haram and so is looking at them.
As for programs that don’t contain any of these forbidden things, it is not haram to show them, nor to look at that them, especially if there is religious benefit in it, such as lessons from the sirah and the like. Or even if there is worldly benefit such as programs about culture and thought that have a purpose. It is best for a Muslim to act with wisdom as much as he can to keep his children from being attached to the television, because it is obvious that its evil is widespread and its corruption is far worse than its benefits and that most of it is not free of the haram.
What could be worse for Muslims and their homes than television? For the limits of its evil are not just showing morally depraved pictures, but rather it carries something very dangerous for the youth and others which cultivates blameworthy character and belittles the gravity of disobedience by way of showing things like television series [s. such as sitcoms, soap operas and reality shows] and western and eastern movies. And Allah is the helper and only through Him is success for the best of states, Glorious is He.
السؤال :ما حكم مشاهدة التلفاز؟ الجواب : التلفزيون ونحوه من أقراص الكمبيوتر التي يُعرض فيها شتى البرامج غيرُ حرام بذاته، وإنما المحرمُ منه عرضُ البرامج المخالفة للأحكام الشرعية كعرض صور النساء الكاسيات العاريات وشُرب الخمور وأمور العشق والعلاقات غير الشرعية والغناء المصحوب بالموسيقى المحرمة ، فعرضُ هذا حرام والنظر إليه كذلك . أما البرامجُ الخاليةُ عن تلك المحظورات فلا يحرم عرضُها ولا النظرُ إليها خصوصاً إن كان فيه منافعُ دينية كدروس في السيرة ونحوها ، أو منافعُ دنيوية كبرامج ثقافية وفكرية هادفة ، والأولى بالمسلم أن يسعى بالحكمة قدرَ طاقته لصرف أولاده عن التعلق بالتلفاز لما لا يخفى من أن شرَّه مستطيرٌ ومفاسده أعظم بكثير من منافعه وأن غالبه لا يخلو من الحرام ، وما أفسد كثيراً من بيوت المسلمين وغيرهم إلا التلفاز ، مع أن شرَّه لا يقتصر على عرض الصور الخليعة فحسب بل فيه من زرع الأخلاق الذميمة والتهوين من المعاصي الشيءُ الكثيرُ الخطيرُ على الناشئة وغيرهم من خلال ما يُعرض فيه مما يسمى بالمسلسلات والأفلام العربية والغربية ، والله المستعان وبه وحده التوفيقُ لأحسن الأحوال سبحانه