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How to respect your parents

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How to respect your parents

Post by Ithar Ghada Faied on Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:18 pm



A. Introduction:There are many days set aside in non-Islamic societies to honor and appreciate special people; examples of these are Father's Day, Mother's Day, Memorial Day and Labor Day. In Islam, however, respecting, honoring and appreciating parents is not just for a single day of the year, but rather for each and every day.

B. Parents in the Qur'an:A Muslim child should respect and appreciate his or her parents on a daily basis. Allah mentions that human beings must recognize their parents and that this is second only to the recognition of Allah Himself.

Throughout the Qur'an, we notice that parents are mentioned with appreciation and respect, even if they are senile. In the Qur'an, there is a very beautiful description of how parents are to be treated; Allah Says (what means): "And your Lord has decreed that you not worship except Him, and to parents, good treatment. Whether one or both of them reach old age [while] with you, say not to them [so much as] 'uff' [i.e., an expression of irritation or disapproval] and do not repel them but speak to them a noble word. And lower to them the wing of humility out of mercy and say: 'My Lord! Have mercy upon them as they brought me up [when I was] small.'" [Qur'an 17-24]

The recognition and respect of parents is mentioned in the Qur'an eleven times; in every instance, Allah reminds children to recognize and to appreciate the love and care that they have received from their parents. One such example is when Allah says what means: "And We have enjoined upon man goodness to parents…" [Qur'an 29:8 & 46:15]

1. The demand for recognizing parents is made more emphatic when Allah Says (what means): "And [recall] when We took the covenant from the Children of Israel, [enjoining upon them]: 'Do not worship except Allah; and to parents, do good…'" [Qur'an 2]

2. Allah again emphazises in chapter An-Nisaa' that children should be kind to their parents. Allah Says what means: "Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and to parents do good..." [Qur'an 4]

3. In Chapter Al-An'aam, Allah reemphazises that people should be kind to their parents; Allah Says what means: "Say: 'Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited to you. [He commands] that you not associate anything with Him, and to parents, good treatment...'" [Qur'an 6:151]

C. Mothers: Although Islam recognizes both parents, mothers are given particular gratitude and respect. This can be appreciated if we reflect upon the hardships and suffering that mothers experience in their lives. In this regard, there is a Hadeeth of the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam: It was narrated by Abu Hurayrah may Allah be pleased with him that a man came to the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam and asked him: 'Who is most deserving of my close companionship?' He sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam replied: “Your mother; your mother; your mother; then your father; then the next closest to you in kinship; then the one next closest.”

Islam has endorsed respect for parents by their children, even if the parents are non-Muslims. If parents strive to convert their children to non-Islamic beliefs, the children should not obey them, but must still maintain goodness towards them. In this regard, Allah says what means: "And We have enjoined upon man [care] for his parents. His mother carried him, [increasing her] in weakness upon weakness, and his weaning is two years. Be grateful to Me and your parents; to Me is the [final] destination. But if they endeavor to make you associate with Me that of which you have no knowledge, do not obey them but accompany them in [this] world with appropriate kindness and follow the way of those who turn back to Me [in repentance]. Then to Me will be your return, and I will inform you about what you used to do." [Qur'an 31-15]

D. More Respect: Islam teaches us that of the most beloved deeds to Allah, having respect for one's parents is second only to that of prayer and is greater than that of Jihaad (fighting in His cause). In this respect, Abu 'Abdur-Rahmaan 'Abdullaah Ibn Mas’ood may Allah be pleased with him narrated the following: "I asked the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam: 'Which deed is the most beloved to Allah?' He sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam replied: "Prayers performed on time." I then asked: 'Which one is next?' He replied: "Goodness to parents." I then asked: 'Which is next?' He replied: "Jihaad in the path of Allah."

In Islam, respect for parents is so great that the child and his wealth are considered to be the property of the parents: `A’ishah may Allah be pleased with her narrated that a man came to the Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam in order to resolve a dispute that he had with his father regarding a loan he had given him. The Prophet sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam said to the man: "You and your wealth are to (i.e., the property of) your father."

E. Performing daily Du'aa' (supplication) for them.

Let us pray to Allah that we do our best to respect our parents, honor them, be kind to them, assist them, and please them so that we may attain the love of Allah.

O Allah! Accept our humble prayers and make us obedient slaves to You.

O Allah! Help us to be respectful children to our parents. Ameen.
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