Please be aware that Islam highly values family and urges strong ties of kith and kin, because a well-cohesive family will undoubtedly be happier. A happy family means that all its members including relatives would cherish a friendly, compassionate atmosphere. Allah the Almighty says:
“And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquillity in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.” [Al-Quran, surah Al-Rum, verse 21].
Indeed, it was with affection and mercy that our Prophet Muhammad nurtured his happy and stable family and he was certainly the best model for us to emulate. The Exalted Allah says:
“There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern.” [Al-Quran, surah Al Ahzab, verse 21].
To this effect, the Messenger of Allah stressed that family should be the most worthy of one’s best care, as he said:
“The best of you is the one who is best to his family, and I am the best of you to my family.”
Thus, he had always been a good cheerful companion and treated his family with empathy. He used to return home after Isha (night) prayer and engage in a pleasant conversation with his family members before going to sleep. Indeed this shows that the Prophet was keen to keep good and strong ties with his family. As such, we should follow his steps by gathering with family members in an agreeable atmosphere, talking to and entertaining each other.
Please also know that mutual consultation amongst members of the family, males, and females, is one of the highly appreciated conducts in Islam. It consolidates understanding, compassion, and interconnection. And it is a principle that Allah the Almighty guided us to heed concerning babies weaning as He says:
“And if they both desire weaning through mutual consent from both of them and consultation, there is no blame upon either of them.” [Al-Quran, surah Al-Baqarah, verse 233].
That is if both parents decide on weaning, on mutual consent and due consultation, there will be no blame upon them. Yet neither of them can have an exclusive right of taking that decision. So if such is the rule on weaning, then parents are expected to do the same on other important matters like educating their children, guiding them, teaching them good conducts, and promoting the value of loyalty to the homeland and the ruler amongst them.
Other important matters that require concerted opinion include encouraging our children to observe their prayers, perform their duties and be sensible in using modern technologies. All of this is in order to protect them from negative effects, as well as raising their awareness of bad companions, extremist and unacceptable behaviors. Indeed, parents are recommended to consult one another regarding all aspects of their children’s lives and future plans so that they might succeed in taking the most appropriate decisions.
Please know also that Muslim spouses are highly required to build sympathetic and harmonious relationships and make recourse to dialogue in solving family problems. This is a key to avoid conflicts, hatred, and quarrels as well as protect the family against breaking apart. In this regard, Allah Almighty says:
“And live with them in kindness. For if you dislike them – perhaps you dislike a thing and Allah makes therein much good.” [Al-Quran, surah An-Nisaa, verse 19].
On the same matter, the Prophet said, “A believing man should not hate (his wife) a believing woman; if he dislikes one of her characteristics, he will be pleased with another.” This means that a husband should not hate his wife because she has a quality that he dislikes, for she may have other qualities that may please him. At the same time, if a husband dislikes his wife, he should fear Allah and treat her in kindness. In this context, it is narrated that a man came to Al Hasan Al Basri and said, “I have a daughter who is dear to me and many men have proposed to her. I seek your advice on whom among them to choose to be her husband.” Then Al Basri said, “marry her to a man who fears Allah; if he likes her, he will treat her in kindness, and if h does not like her he will not treat her unjustly.”
For their part, Muslim wives should always seek to reconcile and contain the disagreements with their husbands, if any, as the Messenger of Allah said, “Shall I tell you who amongst your women would be admitted to Paradise? Those who were most loving, fertile, and helpful to their husbands; and those who, even if they were hurt would, go to their husbands with a helping hand and say: I swear to Allah not to go to bed until you were pleased. “
Indeed, such a pleasant dialogue would ensure the optimal environment for raising our children on principles of love and mercy, protecting them from risks of danger, guiding them to the right path, explaining to them Halal and Haram (lawful and unlawful deeds), teaching them dialogue etiquette and urging them to be steadfast in observing prayers.
Allah the Almighty appreciated his Apostle Ismail, peace be upon him, for taking care of his family. About him, Allah says, “and he used to enjoin on his people prayer and Zakat and was to his Lord pleasing.” [Surah Mariam:, verse 55]. The Almighty also revealed to the Prophet: “and enjoin prayer upon your family [and people] and be steadfast therein.” [Surah Taha, verse 132].
To be able to raise your children well, you need also to sit with them, listen to them, be engaged with them, follow up their learning progress, know their friends, develop their skills and talents as well as encourage them to do all that is good for themselves and their community.
With this in mind, we pray to Allah the Almighty to help us be the key to all that is good for our families, the best guides to our children and the pillars of stability to our society. O Lord, please guide us all to obey You and obey Your Messenger Muhammad, and obey whoever You have commanded us to obey in line with Your orders:
“O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.” [Al-Quran, surah An-Nisaa, verse 59].
May Allah direct us all to the blessings of the Glorious Quran and the Sunnah of His Messenger. I say this and ask Allah for forgiveness for me, you, so invoke Him for forgiveness, for He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful.
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