By Shamim F
Moulding your child’s akhlaq, moral conducts
Our moral conducts (akhlaq) are like our garments, visible to all. Working on perfecting our akhlaq is part of our religion.
Principles of moral conduct:
Adab is that which is praiseworthy in actions and utterance and considered the best of ethics. Islam offers boundaries and measures by which adab can be taught, for instance in dealing with one’s parents, interacting with scholars, family and neighbours etc., how to dress, how to worship and general politeness.
Truthfulness – taught by way of example as children often learn from what they see.
Trustworthiness and honouring confidences – raise your children to be discreet and honourable, even a statement said in confidence is a trust that must be honoured.
Pure of Heart – train your children to pure in their hearts and discourage spite, envy or insincerity by nipping it in the bud. Teach them to forgive and move on.
Emotional and Psychological welfare
Principles of building emotional and psychological strength:
Affection/Play– always try to be affectionate and loving. Play with your children. The Prophet of Allah would show affection to children and demonstrate his love and concern for them by wiping their hair, particularly the orphan children.
Give gifts – as the Prophet of Allah said ‘Exchanging gifts lead to love’
Meet them smiling – let your children feel you value their company and enjoy them being around you.
Show your concern – by asking them how they are, showing interest and sympathy.
Be just and fair – always be fair in dealings with your children to avoid breeding jealousy amongst them.
Restrain yourself – do not fall into the trap of over-indulging your children as it will be destructive in the long term.
Developing healthy children
Play is a natural instinct that Allah bestows on all children. It is a means to develop their physical body and an education in life. Physically healthy bodies are better able to worship Allah with consistency and energy, and a healthy start in life will increase you child’s likelihood of succeeding.
Principles of building a healthy body:
Child’s right to learn sports – it is one of your child’s rights to be permitted physical exercise. Archery, horse-riding and swimming are recommended. In addition to being both physical and educational sports have many other benefits, including:
Social: learning how to interact with people in different situations
Moral: a lesson in right and wrong, dealing with success/failure
Innovative: they often encourage new ideas
Confidence boosting: opportunity to learn new skills.
Stress reliever: sports often provide a vent to release any stresses etc.
Friendly competition and play – competitions are good motivators and allow a sense of ‘community’ and ‘togetherness’ to develop between the competitors.
Play with your children – the Prophet of Allah would play with his grandsons and would allow them to play with him.
Note: never allow your children to play out of doors after sunset.
Intellectual and academic development
Acquiring knowledge is an obligation on all muslims. As per Hadith in Sahih al-Bukhari, our Prophet Muhammad (May peace be upon him) said: ‘Educate, make it easy ; not difficult,..’
Principles in developing the intellect:
Motivation – plant the love of knowledge an learning in your child early on. Inspire them with the Hadith extolling knowledge and those who seek it. Recognise their achievements with tangible rewards.
Memorise the Qur’an – create an achievable plan for Qur’an memorisation and work on their and your ikhlas.
Find righteous teachers and tailor goals according to each child’s needs and capabilities. Work towards maximising their strengths and passions.
Arabic language – Arabic is the key to the Qur’an and Hadith and allows one to access a vast library of Islamic works.
Make knowledge accessible – invest in good books and a comprehensive Islamic library.
Alkauthar Institute Weekend Course – ‘Parenting Matters, The art of raising Righteous Children’. Taught by Sheikh Alaa Elsayed.