Friday, July 10, 2015

'Knell' to your mother this Ramadan before its too late!

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful; blessings and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.


The Declining Day (Al-'Asr)
1. By the declining day,
2. Lo! Man is in a state of loss,
3. Save those who believe and do good works, and exhort 
one another to truth and exhort one another to endurance.

DEAR readers; I saw these beautiful phrases of a poster placed at a notice board of a 'masjid' which read: "Biarkan solatmu beribu-ribu rakaat, sedekahmu berjuta-juta ringgit, hajimu berkali-kali, tapi saat kamu gores hati ibumu, syurga bukan milikmu, kasih ibu membawa ke syurga, jagalah ibu." (Even though you offer 'solat' (prayers) doing thousands and thousands of 'rakaat' (units of prayers), your arms amounted to thousands of ringgit, you perform hajj many times, but the moment you 'pierce' (hurt) your mother's heart, heaven is out of your reach, a mother's love brings you to paradise, please take care of your mother).

We are now in the middle of Ramadan and as we are about to enter the final stage of the holy month (the last ten days) which scholars believed 'Lailatulqadar' (Night of Power) falls during the period, let us (I included) 'cleanse, purify and clear' our hearts, minds and doings in hoping and pleading that Allah SWT would be pleased and accept our 'ibadah' (good deeds).

For the beginning let us do some 'muhasabah' (reflection) regarding our 'ibadah' during this Ramadan. From scenarios at many 'masjids', Muslims showed great interest in performing 'solat tarawih' (a 'sunat' (recommended) prayers) but many failed to join congregation of the five times compulsory prayers (solat fardhu) that are 'zuhur', 'asar', 'maghrib', 'isyak' and 'subuh'.

The writer is not suggesting that Muslims not to emphasized on 'solat sunat tarawih' but to draw attention that some of us (the writer included) to buck up in our knowledge about 'fiqh aulawiyah' (give priority to things that are more important). 'Solat tarawih' is only 'sunat' but why must many Muslim go all out for it but put little attention on 'solat fardu'? Deeds which are of in the category of 'sunat' cannot be placed more important than the 'fardhu' ones.

Now, we come back to discuss those beautiful phrases I mentioned earlier - "even though you offer 'solat' (prayers) doing thousands and thousands of 'rakaat' (units of prayers)...but the moment you broke your mothers heart, heaven is out of your reach." Yes, dear readers, this Ramadan we should look back at our relationship with our parents especially our mother because if we were in bad terms with 'ustaz' during his 'tazkirah' (Islamic lessons) I heard recently said it would jeopardy our future not only in the Hereafter but in this world. In short we were heading for the doom even though we 'solat' (pray), fast and perform other good deeds tirelessly.

Islam is simple, but our mistake is that we make it complicated. Many of us talked about the thousands of prayers we did (including the 'sunat' ones), the large amount of money we gave for charity and the many times we had performed our hajj and umra' (minor hajj) but we failed to look at the basic teaching of the religion which is very simple and this includes how is our behavior (treatment) to our parents!

The Qur’an says: “We have sent down the Book to you which manifests the truth about all things and as guidance and mercy and good news for Muslims.” (Qur’an, 16:89) The religion is easy, beautiful and simply perfect. Why make things hard? The Qur’an reads: “Allah intends for you ease and does not intend for you hardship.” (Qur’an, 2:185)

Regarding our relationship with our parents, we should consistently bear in mind the high status to which Allah SWT has given to parents, a status which mankind has never known, except in Islam. Their status is so elevated that respect for parents is one step below belief in Allah SWT and true worship of Him. In other words, treating parents well, with tender loving care, is the best of one's good deeds, after having faith in Allah SWT. - Let Us Remember Allah (For the Gift of Love in Our Hearts) - Safiah Osman

Dear readers; this Ramadan many of us talked about the many good deeds we had done and was in the thinking about the many more we plan to do; one thing we should never forget is to to assess our relationship with our parents especially our mothers. If the relationship 'is bad or ill' and our parents are still alive, this is a perfect time for us 'to knell down to them' seeking forgiveness from doing what had hurt their hearts. Please do it now and not wait for the coming of 'Hari Raya' (Eid). Please show them our devoted love by cleansing our hearts before it is too late

And to those whose parents had passed away, there are many ways to 'still service' (do good deeds to them) such as saying our 'du'a (supplication) asking Allah SWT to pardon them, giving arms in their names and doing good deeds to their love ones such as their friends who are still alive.

It is beneficial for Muslims to have Islamic knowledge and views about caring one’s parents. Yes, there are bountiful rewards in this word and the Hereafter to those who take great care of their parents; what more when they are of old age but those who abandon them would see the doom in this world and Hereafter. 

To those who have old age parents under their care, please take note about this hadith. Kaab bin Ujra relates, "Rasulullah (s.a.w.) said, "Come near to the 'mimbar'." And we came near to the 'mimbar'. When he ascended the first step of the 'mimbar' he said "Aameen." When he ascended the second step of the 'mimbar' he said, "Aameen.: When he ascended the third step he said, "Aameen." 

When he descended we said, "0 Rasul of Allah, we have heard from you today something which we never heard before." He said, when I ascended the first step, Jibra-eel a.s. appeared before me and said, "Woe to him who found the blessed month of Ramadan and let it pass by without gaining forgiveness,” upon that I said, "Aameen." 

When I ascended the second step, he said "Woe to him before whom thy name is mentioned and then does not read Durood (salaat alan Nabi) on you." 

I replied "Aameen." When I ascended the third step he said, "Woe unto the person in whose presence both parents or one of them attain old age, and (through failure to serve them) is not allowed to enter Jannah." I said "Aameen." (Reported by Haakim)"

There are bountiful rewards to those who care for their parents and heavy penalties to those who resist but why nowadays more and more aged parents were abandoned by their own children? Some are left abandoned in their own homes, others are sent to old folks' homes. Among reasons given the children are busy working and don’t have the time to attend to their parents' needs. 

We could not attain success if we abandoned our parents for heaven lies at the feet of mothers; he who wishes to enter Paradise through the best door must please his father and mother.

The Prophet (s.a.w.) said: “Allah delays all sins, by His Will, except the disobedience towards parents. He punishes the one who is undutiful to his parents even before his death.” Ibn Omar reported that the Prophet s.a.w. said: "The parent's crying is considered part of disobedience to them and is one of the major sins."

Allah SWT said: “And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a world of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honor. 

“And lower unto them the wing of submission through mercy, and say: “My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was young.” (Al-Isra; 17: 23-24) 

In one of our classical books of history and narrations, it is mentioned that once, Abdullah ibn Umar was doing 'tawaaf' around the Ka’bah as an elderly person, many years after the death of the Prophet salla Allahu alayhi wasallam. 

And he saw a man doing 'tawaaf' around the Ka’bah who had a very old lady on his back. He was doing 'tawaaf' carrying this lady on his back. And when the man saw ibn Umar, he rushed up to him, recognizing who he is, and he said, “Oh ibn Umar,” oh son of Umar ibn al-Khattaab, “Oh ibn Umar, this lady on my back is my mother.” This lady is my mother. “And she had a desire to go do hajj. And I live in such and such a province,” and he mentioned a far province in the Muslim lands, “And I could not afford a mount.” I could not afford an animal; I could not afford to bring her in any other means except by carrying her on my back, walking from such and such a village. “Oh ibn Umar, have I done my duty as a son?” Is the scale now equivalent? Have all of the good deeds that the mother did, have I now recompensed her the way that she deserves? 

Ibn Umar responded: “You have done nothing in return.” You’re proud and boastful about this? You have done nothing; your deeds are not worth anything in the scale! You’re comparing a scale of what your mother has done to what you have done back to her?! He says, “You have done nothing in return. But you have done good, and Allah will reward you.” 

The man said, “Oh ibn Umar, I have traveled from such and such a province,” what do you mean I’ve done nothing? “I have traveled from the furthest lands, carrying my mother on my back - and you say I have done nothing?” Ibn Umar said – and listen to this psychologist, listen to the profundity of the response that he gave to this man, listen to it and understand it and apply it in your daily lives – he said: 

“You have done nothing because: when she sacrificed everything for you; when she did everything that she did for you – she gave up her time, her pleasures, her health – she gave up everything she had to raise you as you are – she did it out of a pure love and joy – wanting to see you flourish, waiting so you grow up and you live a full healthy life – she did it for your life - and now that you do it in return, you are waiting for her death – doing it as a pity – doing as an equivalent, doing it in return for the favors – you’re not doing it to see her flourish and live. You’re doing it as a sense of guilt, trying to pay back what she’s done, and waiting for her death, so she is literally off your back.”

Dear readers; please note that the status of a mother is much, much higher than the father. There is nothing which can measure the depths of a mother’s love. Her love is endless, boundless, and limitless without boundaries. When all around us there is a great deal of grief and misery, a great deal of heedlessness, carelessness, thanklessness and inconsiderateness, a mother’s immense love shines through the darkness, glowing with her cheerfulness, kindness and goodness. - Le Us Remember Allah

Truthly, there is no greater love than a mother’s love. It is a love which restrains us from walking off alone into the wilderness, into life’s wilderness and dreadful darkness. 

Let us keep in mind what Prophet Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah (may peace and blessings of Allah be upon him – pbuh) said: “Love your mother, love you mother, love your mother and then love your father.”
The complete version of this hadith which was narrated by Abu Hurairah is: A man came to Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) and said, “O Allah’s Messenger! Who is more entitled to be treated with the best companionship by me?” The Prophet (pbuh) said, “Your mother.” The man said, “Who is next?” The Prophet (pbuh) said, “Your mother.” The man further said, “Who is next?” The Prophet (pbuh) said, “Your mother.” The man asked (for the fourth time), “Who is next?” The Prophet (pbuh) said, “Your father.” (Al-Bukhari – Hadith No. 5971)

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