These are some brief notes from the weekend on Raising Righteous Children in 21st Century Britain held on the weekend of 13th/14th April in Winslow with Dr Khurram. I shall spread the notes over various parts as I am aware that people’s attention, time and enthusiasm is in short supply in these latter days.
“We can’t expect our kids to be different from us – that would be a miracle”
The starting premise to raising righteous children is to ensure that we, as adults, are on the path of righteousness ourselves. This requires that whatever tips we learn – we aim to implement ourselves.
With that in mind we remind ourselves that the title of the poem we were studying is, Riyadatu Sibyaan. The word riyadah has a variety of meanings and comes from the word rawdah (garden) i.e. something that you have to tend to, you can’t neglect i.e. regular weeding, watering etc. So riyadah means exercise or repeating and children require repetition i.e. repeating the same instruction, the same action over and over. Rather than being boring, you are reinforcing key concepts for your child and one should not get upset or dismayyed of the need to repeat.
We are reminded of Praise of Allah (Al-Hamd) i.e. the Best of Praise is Allah’s Praise for Himself because only Allah knows Himself, our brains and hearts could never encompass Him – so how can we ever fully praise Him?
Things happen with Tawfeeq i.e. Divine facilitation and it is with this tawfeeq i.e. Allah creating in His creation the ability to worship Him, that we are able to be guided and this is something to give thanks for (i.e. hamd).
The education of children, from the initial stages, is a great affair so that the child reaches the best of states.
One of the fundamental concepts in raising children is teaching them adab i.e. putting something in its proper place. Adab is everything that is ordered and in its place which means controlling one’s lower self and controlling oneself. The opposite of adab is dhulm (oppression).
Giving adab at a young age is like engraving in stone, whereas giving adab at an adult age is like writing in the sand.
Part of Adab is protecting oneself from haram and Imam Bajuri said, “We protected them (our limbs) in our young days i.e. from disobedience, and He protected us in our old age.
To be continued…