The Blessed Kinship-
Importance of honoring one’s parents in Islam
‘Do not fail to honor your parents.’ [Surah Al-Anam 6:151] is the command of Allah ﷻ, mentioned to us over and over again in the Qur’an. This reminds us of the high-status Islam has given to parents and parenthood, and the obligation to Honoring parents in Islam. Let us see in detail on what Islam says about the importance of honoring parents in Islam.
Rights of Parents Over Their Children
It is highlighted in the Qur’an and Sunnah about the rights parents have over their children and it is expected of the children to fulfil those rights.
- Giving Them Love and Respect
Parents are the first of those who deserve our love and respect. Our mothers carry us in their womb and our fathers carry us on their shoulders, it is important that we reciprocate the same love they showered upon us.
‘…and honour family ties. Surely Allah is ever Watchful over you.’ [Surah An-Nisa 4:1]
- Taking Care of Their Needs
Our parents take care of our needs and affairs when we are young and it is enjoined upon us to cater to their needs as well.
There came to Allah’s Apostle ﷺ a person and said: I owe allegiance to you for migration and Jihad seeking reward only from Allah. He ﷺ said: Is one from amongst your parents living? He said: Yes, of course, both are living. He further asked: Do you want to seek reward from Allah? He said: Yes. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said: Go back to your parents and accord them benevolent treatment. [Sahih Muslim 2549d]
- Speaking kindly
Allah ﷻ has made it clear enough that one should give best treatment to his parents, as they are most deserving of it and to not offend them with harsh tone or words. Allah ﷻ has warned sternly to the extent that one should not utter an ‘uff’ or a word of disrespect towards parents.
‘…and to parents, good treatment. Whether one or both of them reach old age [while] with you, say not to them [so much as], “uff,” and do not repel them but speak to them a noble word.’ [Surah Al-Isra 17:23]
- Obeying Them Except For Matters of Shirk
While Allah ﷻ constantly insists in obeying one’s parents and granting them kind treatment, He ﷻ prohibits one from following the words of his parents on matters involving worship and shirk.
‘But if they endeavour to make you associate with Me that of which you have no knowledge, do not obey them but accompany them in [this] world with appropriate kindness and follow the way of those who turn back to Me [in repentance] …’ [Surah Luqman 31:15]
- Maintaining ties with their acquaintances after their death
While one is obligated to take care of their parents when they are alive, it is expected of him to honor the relationships that his parents had maintained after their death.
The finest act of goodness is that a person should treat kindly the loved ones of his father. [Sahih Muslim 2552b]
Importance Of Honoring One’s Parents in Islam
What is the significance of the relationship between parents and children? Why should we really Honoring parents in Islam? Simply put, our parents bring us to this world with a lot of struggles and sacrifices. No matter how much we serve them, we cannot repay them back. Our reciprocation is with Allah ﷻ. Here are a few reasons and the importance of treating one’s parents with the best treatment.
- Obedience to Allah ﷻ And His Messenger ﷺ
When we honor our parents, we are obeying the words of Allah ﷻ and His messenger ﷺ. Allah ﷻ has mentioned obedience to parents immediately after obedience to Him. This is in order to highlight the status afforded to parents in Islam.
‘And We have enjoined upon man goodness to parents…’ [Surah Al-Ankabut 29:8]
- A means of entering paradise
Obeying and honoring one’s parents serves as a means of entering paradise.
Abu Huraira reported Allah’s apostle saying, ‘Let him be humbled into dust; let him be humbled into dust.’ It was said: ‘Allah’s Messenger, who is he?’ He said: ‘He who sees either of his parents during their old age or he sees both of them, but he does not enter Paradise.’ [Sahih Muslim 2551a]
- Building Friendship and Love
Respecting and honoring parents helps build the friendship and love between parents and children, as many of us spend more time in our house with our parents. It is ideal to give utmost care and attention to our parents.
- Showing gratitude
Our parents brought us into this world, they took care of us and our needs when we were young, they give up on their own desires for the sake of our own benefit and they do sacrifice a lot. Showing gratitude is the least we can do as children in a way of reciprocation.
‘…Be grateful to Me and to your parents…’ [Surah Luqman 31:14]
If a person honoring parents in Islam it may reciprocate to him, causing his own children to honor him.
‘Is there any reward for goodness except goodness?’ [Surah Ar-Rahman 55:60]
What Can Children Do to Honor Their Parents?
The following actions can be followed by one to honor his parents-
– Obeying, respecting and listening to them
– Praying for their forgiveness and mercy
– Lowering one’s voice in their presence
– Smiling at them
– Staying humble with them
– Not showing displeasure to them
– Fulfilling their wishes
– Consulting them
– Not travelling without their permission
– Not starting to eat before they do
– Not showing preference to one’s wife or children over them
– Visiting them and offering them gifts
– Thanking them for bringing you up
– Paying off parents’ debt if he has wealth
– If one’s parents have not performed hajj, he can spend for them to do so, or perform on their behalf or spend for someone else on their behalf
‘…and pray, “My Lord! Be merciful to them as they raised me when I was young.”’ [Surah Al-Isra 17:24]
Nothing can replace the role of parents in our life. And seeking to serve them benefits us in this world and in the next. May Allah bless our parents and forgive their sins. Aameen.