Taqwa and The Family

February 10th, 2010 @   -  No Comments

Many people wonder what the secret to happiness is. In Islam, this secret has been revealed to us in the Quran and Sunnah: the way to true happiness is through Taqwa. Allah said: “And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine.” (65: 2-3).

Taqwa is to fear Allah by practicing the things that Allah loves, and avoiding the things that He hates, or things that may lead to what He hates. Every decision that we make, down to the smallest things, should be influenced by our Taqwa.

Most parents want the best for their children. Through the obligatory and prohibited practices, Allah has shown us the best way to lead our life. Nothing in Islam is random or by accident, everything we practice or stay away from has a reason. The obligatory and recommended practices were prescribed to make our lives better, and the prohibited practices were outlawed to protect us from their harmful effects. If we follow what is prescribed and avoid what is prohibited, we will eliminate many of the problems in our lives that make us unhappy.

The first step for parents to helping your children gain Taqwa is to teach them about their religion. Without enough knowledge, they will not be able to practice what Allah loves and avoid what He hates. But parents cannot teach their children, if they themselves do not know how they should be leading their lives. So educate yourself first, and then teach your children.

Teach your children that Taqwa is the only way by which to measure a person’s status. A person who has Taqwa is better than a person who doesn’t have Taqwa. Once they understand this, they will be confident and successful Muslim individuals in society.

The second step is helping your children practice what they learn. Knowledge and action go hand in hand because knowledge without practice is useless. Taqwa is not something that exists solely in the heart; it is demonstrated through our actions.

The best way to teach your children is by example. Some parents expect their children to practice things that they themselves do not do.

“Enjoin you Al-birr (piety and righteousness and every act of obedience to Allah) on the people and you forget (to practice it) yourselves.” (2:44).

“O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do? Most hateful it is with Allah that you say that which you do not do.” (61:2-3)

If you expect your child to be honest, you need to be forthright also. Whatever you expect from your child, practice it yourself first.

The actions that we are judged upon are not limited to the rituals; they go beyond that to how we deal with others.

When Allah prescribed for us how we should lead our lives, He did not expect us to be perfect. He expects us to make mistakes. This is why He tells us that He is forgiving and merciful. When we make a mistake, we should never lose hope in Allah’s mercy. Instead we should take actions to rectify our mistakes. Teach your children to correct what they did wrong. Teach them to start by asking forgiveness from Allah, to ask forgiveness from any person they hurt, and finally, to do something good that can either resolve what they did wrong, or even a good action that is not related to what they did.

Be understanding with your children – they will make mistakes, and you have to be patient with them until they develop good habits. By teaching them the right fundamentals, you will put them on the path to a positive start.

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