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The Exalted position of Parents in Islam (Part 2)

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The time when a child is in the process of adopting a way of life which can make him either virtuous or wicked, he can be metamorphosed into a perfect human being or a degraded wild animal. The virtue or wickedness of a person will be dependent on the upbringing he receives and this responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the parents. In fact the parents are instruments of shaping a human being, good or bad, from the child. The greatest service which the parents can render to their children is that they train them to be good mannered, kind, friends of humans, well meaning, freedom loving, bold, just, wise, righteous, noble, faithful, dutiful, hard working, educated. The parents must mould their children in such a way that they are successful in both the world and hereafter. Only such people are those who are endowed with the exalted status of parenthood, and not those who in fulfillment of their carnal desire caused the birth of children and left the children to fend for themselves and rendering them likely to fall into evil ways.

The Holy Prophet said: “The best thing a father provides to his child is good manners and ethical training.”‌[9]

The mother has a more important function to perform towards the upbringing of the progeny. Even during the pregnancy the mother’s food habits and her behavior affects the future virtuosity or otherwise of the developing child.

The Prophet of Islam said:

“Lucky is the one whose foundation of his virtue has been made in the womb of the mother and unlucky is one whose wickedness had its rudiments in the mother’s womb as well”‌[10]

The Prophet also said: “The Janna (Heaven) is under the feet of one’s mother.”‌[11]

The parents, who don’t pay attention to the education and training of their children, become guilty of gross negligence. Such parents must be asked whether the innocent child pleaded with him to give him birth in the world to be abandoned like sheep and cattle. Now that you have become the cause of his existence, by virtue of religious tenets and human wisdom his education and training is your bonden duty.

The parents are also answerable to the society. Today’s children will be men and women, the citizens of tomorrow. The fabric of the society will be made of these individuals. Whatever lessons they learn today, they shall put them into practice tomorrow. If their upbringing today is perfect, the society of tomorrow shall be flawless. And if today’s generation follows a faulty program of training it is imperative that tomorrow's society will be evil and perverted. The personalities in the fields of politics, education and society shall emerge from these elements. Today’s children are tomorrow’s parents.

Today’s children can be tomorrow’s reformers. If they have received good training at the hands of their parents, they in turn can carry forward this practice with their children. If the parents have the will, they can be the instruments of the reform of the society for the future and with neglect of the children they can be the cause of the ruination of the society. By giving the right training to their children, the parents can render invaluable service to their society.

Education and training should not be treated as an insignificant subject. The efforts which the parents make to educate their children and the hardships that they undergo in this quest result in the creation of thousands of professors, doctors, and engineers. It is the parents who strive to nurture perfect human beings, capable and pious mentors and other professionals.

The mothers in particular bear more responsibility for the upbringing of the children. The children spend most of their childhood with the mothers. The foundation of the direction their future is bound to take is laid here. So, the key to the vice or virtue of a person and the progress or decline of a society is with the mothers of the society. The woman’s place is not in the shop floor, ministerial or administrative positions. These functions don’t measure up to the importance of a woman as a mother. Mothers breed perfect human beings. Virtuous ministers, lawyers, professors owe their positions to the loving care received from their mothers during their formative years.

The parents, who nurture truthful, pious children not only serve their children and the society but also create a niche for themselves in the society. These children will be a support of the parents in their frail old age. If parents strive towards the education and upbringing of their children they reap the harvest of their troubles during their lifetime only.

Hazrat Ali says:

“Evil off-spring is among the greatest hardships for the parents.”‌[12]

Hazrat Ali also says:

“Evil off-spring causes loss of respect for the parents and the successors are shamed.”‌[13]

The Prophet of Islam says: “May Allah bless the parents who trained their children to behave justly with them.”‌[14]

Therefore those who attain parenthood have great responsibility on their shoulders. This responsibility is to Allah Almighty as also to their fellow human beings and also to their own children. If they discharge the responsibility properly they will be rewarded in this world and hereafter. But if they falter in the discharge of this responsibility then they themselves will be the losers and they will be tantamount to have cheated their own children and the society at large and they would be perpetrating an unpardonable sin.


 Notes:

[9] Majma al-Zawaid, Volt 8, Page: 159

[10] Bihar al-Anwar, Volt 77, Page 115-133.

[11] Mustadrak, Vol. 2, Page 38.

[12] Ghurar al-Hikam, Page 189.

[13] Ghurar al-Hikam, Page 780.

[14] Makarim al-Akhlaq, Page 517.


The Codes of Training by Ayatollah Ibrahim Amini


Other Links:

Some Points to Remember about Good Parenting

Out of Date Methods to Raise Children

 Methods of raising children

How to Observe the World of Our Young Children

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