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Fatima is Fatima

by : Dr. Ali Shari'ati

Back You are here: Home Books Family The Principle Of Education (Up' Bringing)

The Principle Of Education (Up' Bringing) - 3. A word of Truth

Article Index



Who doesn't know that the children have gigantic obligation, regarding their parents. What! just one right? Parents have tremendous rights, and one who does not accept this reality, can not be termed as human being, what to say that he is a Muslim!

At about twelve locations, the Holy Quran explicitly and emphatically directed the "sons of Adam" to have an extremely balanced, highly modular and exemplary attitude towards their parents. In two verses the instruction is general, one being Surah Ankabu't, the 29th surah, and the ether Surah Ahqa'f, the 46th surah of the Holy Book. It is stated:-

And we have ordained upon man, to be humble with his parents. 7 And we had made it obligatory upon Man, that he should deal nicely with his parents. 8 But in Surah Al-Baqarah, the Allah Almighty along with His worship has made the elegant behaviour with the parents, as a part of social contract. Therefore in the context of Bani Israel, to all those who submits (mukallif) to the limits of Allah's sovereignty, this constitutional reality has been reminded in the following verse,:-

And when we took oath from the sons of Israel, that you should not worship any one else, except Allah, and should have an elegant behavior with your parents. 9

Similarly in Surah Nis'a the sole Creator while mentioning the Islamic system of Legislation,along with submission to Him, and the belief of His Oneness (Tauhi'd), has given priority to the respect of parents and has guided us in the following way:-

3. Worship Allah, do not make anyone His associate, and serve your parents in an examplary way. 10

In Surah Anna'm, while preventing from idolatory, the need for a better approach with the parents, has emphasized. And in this verse, the way adulatory has been declared non statutory (unconstitutional), in the same context the indecency, of the children towards their parents, has been annoUnced as contrary to the fundamental beliefs of Islam. It has been stated:

4. "Oh Prophet! tell the people. --- come on: I read out all that to you, which Allah has declared forbidden (Harn'm). (Firstly) that, do not associate anyone with Allah, (secondly) that always treat you parents in an examplary way (never be immoral)". 11

Besides this, in the 17th Surah of the Holy Quran, the Ultimate Creator along with the acceptance of Hiso Oneness (Tauhee'd), has also considered the examplary dealing of the children with their parents, as a fundamental issue of religion (Deen). It Is mentioned as follow:-

5. The order of your Creator (Ru'b) is inflexible (definite), that do not worship any one except Him, and keep on treating your parents in an examplary manner. 12 Further, in Surah Luqman, the prestige of the parents have attained boundless heights. Therefore regarding the issue of, obligation of thanks giving to the benefactor, 13 Allah 4ias ordained. "Oh My people! it is not sufficient to be just indebted in My Grace, but the dignity of My directive and your conscience.

The American Government system is a collection of multiple evils, but this aspect is quite thought provoking that on the face of the world, it is the only country where the 'Thanks Giving Day' is officially being observed. Alas! the people who are willing to sacrifice everything against the evils of that nation, may atleast include this one good aspect of that nation, in their lives, Naiafi, demands, that you should persistently submit before your parents, due to the services they rendered for you."

Therefore the verse guides us in the following way:-

6. And We have instructed man, for whom his mother bore labours after labour when she was pregnant, breast fed him, weaned him after two years, that he should thank Me and along with it, also pay thanks to his parents. After all everyone has to return to us. 14 Then in Surah Mariu'm at two locations, the quality of being graceful and submissive to parents or mother, has been regarded as an ideal attribute of the prophets. Hazrat Yahya-bin-Zakariya and both "father and mother", so regarding him it is mentioned:

7. "Oh Yahya! Holdthis book with steadfastness. We granted him prophet hood (nabuwa't) while he was a child, and (due to our special Grace) also blessed him with soft heartedness and chastity (purity), further that, he himself was pious, and was very obedient to his parents, and he was not rebellious and disobedient. 15 And since Hazrat lssa only had mother, so in his own words it has been stated:-

8. (while in cradle, lssa as a child) said, "I am an obedient servant of Allah. He has given me the Book, made me Prophet, where ever, and in whatsoever condition I may be, He has made me a blessed one. And that, till I am alive, He has instructed me to offer prayers and pay Zakat (alms). And that Allah Almighty has made me an "absolute obedient" son of my mother, further that, He has safe-guarded me from being violent and unlucky." 16 Moreover while mentioning the details of those people who could be considered deserving for monetary support, the Holy Quran gives top priority to the economic service to the parents. It is mentioned:

9. "Oh Prophet! People inquire from you as to what and how they should spend? Tell them that whatsoever you should spend for prosperity should be distributed amongst your parents, relatives, orphans, needy and strangers (wanderers). And whatever good deed you would perform, Allah will know about it. 17

The way Hazrat Nu'h expresses his involuntary love and respect for his parents, in the same manner it has become the part of the Holy Quran. It is mentioned:-

10. "Oh Allah! Grant a place in your Grace, for me and my parents." 18 Then let us witness the friend of Allah, Hazrat lbrahi'm (ASWS)! See with what devotion, is he supplicating before Allah:- 11."Oh Our Nourisher! On the Day of Judgement, bless me, my parents, and all the pious persons (momi'ns), with Your forgiveness." 19

It all does not end up here! But regarding the elegance in behaviour and obedience towards the parents, the Holy Quran has mentioned many other practical standards and factual realities, which manifests deep in one's self. Moreover the explanation and interpretation communicated to us by those personalities, who understood the Quranic view point and are a guide of humanity, widely opens our insight, and all the rights of the parents and our obligations regarding them, gets deep embedded in the conscience of every wise individual. Note the instructions given to us, in the following verses of Surah Bani-lsrael: -

12. "When either of your father or mother gets old, then do not dare to think of scolding them (on their anger) and do not even sound Aah! and even if you have to say something, then present it with utmost courtesy tenderness and respect. Keep yourself submissive in front of them. And that, supplicate for them in the following manner, Oh Allah! the way they borne us (with complete sacrifices), (as it's reward) You too should bless them a place of peace (and tranquil) in Your Grace." 20

In this regards, Sadiq-e-Ale-Muhammed lmam Jaffer-e-Sadiq and the eighth Imam Hazrat lmam Riza(ASWS) says:

"To prevent the parents from any grief from their children, had their been any other concise and more comprehensive word than "Aah!", then the same would have been revealed in the Holy Quran, through the Divine revelation (Vahi)." 21 While explaining the meaning and purpose of the Quranic Verse; 22

the Sadiq-e-Ale Muhammed (SAWS) has stated:-

"That is! never gaze or cast a frowny look towards the parents, but whenever you look towards them, it should be felt that as if you have bloomed roses of love and affection in their lapse. Be cautious! that your tone should never be above their voice. Your hands never higher then their's, and when you walk together, never attempt to overtake them" 23 Regarding respect and honour, lmam Muhammed Baqir(ASWS) says: - "Once on a way, my grand father lmam Zain-ul-Abi'dee'n saw a father and son going some where together, but the style was, that while walking the son was hanging over the shoulder of his father. lmam Muhammed Baqar said that: My father was so much dejected to see this indecent act, that he never spoke with him for the rest of his life. " 24 Further, Baqar-A1-U'loom Hazrat lmam Muhammed Baqar(ASWS) has stated, that once the Last Prophet(SAWAW) was inquired:-

"Who has the highest priority of right on a man? He replied: "the parents right rank highest" 25

Besides to above, let us now dwell a while upon the importance and significance of the following words uttered by the Prophet, who (according to Holy Quran) uttered nothing except what was ordained upon him through the Divine revelation. May be, it glitters the mirror of our luck:

"The Holy Prophet(SAWAW) has said: if a child casts an eye of love upon his parents, this vision turns into divine w5rship (ibadat). " 26 "If the parents of some person, are prodigal (extravagant) towards him, and his reaction of this maltreatment is that he castes an eye of anger upon his parents, then Allah Almighty would not accept his prayers (namaz) " 27 And the following commandment of the Holy Prophet(SAWAW) should always be borne in mind:- "The will of Allah is merged with the will of the parents, and His rage, is concealed in the rage and anger of the parents". 28

And finally in the end, let us mention an extremely thought provoking message of Sadiq-e-Ale Muhammad for the "coming generation". He says:-

"You should set up the "tradition" of obedience . towards your parents. Your children would continue 29 displaying obedience towards you!"