Learning from the pure life and living of our Prophet (SAW) will tell us how to treat and behave with our parents. Once along with his companions, Prophet (SAW) passed by Abwa, he turned his camel towards the mountains, where his mother was buried. He sat beside the grave of his mother and put his head between his knees and started crying so much that his beard was dropping tears and said, “I wish my mother was alive and I was leading Isha prayer and started reciting Surah Fatiha and from my home, my mother calls me, Muhammad. I would have left the prayer for my mother.”
Our Prophet (SAW) said that the pleasure of Allah is found in the pleasure of the parents and the displeasure of Allah is found in the displeasure of the parents. So whoever wants Allah to be pleased with him should please his parents and whoever is worried about the punishment of Allah should be worried about the anger of his parents.
As you grow older, your greatest regret will always be the bad memories that you have left with your mother and father. You will never be able to take back your harsh words that caused distress to your parents. It will cause you much grief. As long as you live. It is easy to get angry as a young man or woman, but the regrets and the memories that remain will be painful for you.
Allah has told in the Quran, “Don’t say even Uff to your parents, don’t speak harshly to them and keep on being kind and generous”. The most important rule in Quran is to worship Him (alone) and in the entire Quran, no other commandment has been added on with “an and” after the command to worship Allah other than the command to show respect to your parents. The Quranic paradigm is very clear that after the rights due to Allah, we have to show Ehsan to our parents. Ehsan means that you give more than what is expected and you don’t expect as much as is owed to you. So you go above and beyond for the other and in return, you don’t care about anything.
Further, Allah says not even say Uff to your parents and in the Arabic language, Uff is the slightest method of expressing irritation. There’s nothing that is less trivial than Uff. So, Allah says, once your parents reach old age, don’t even show them that you are the slightest bit irritated. What is required, is to control your tongue in the presence of your parents. Sometimes you may feel angry and irritated. But it is not allowed to express anger and irritation. It is further commanded to say sweet, loving and generous words to your parents. No matter what they do to you.
Then Allah adds, “Lower unto them the wings of Mercy” meaning not just speech but your actions should comfort your parents. Give them what they require and there’s clearly a connotation of taking care of them because the metaphor of lowering, the wings is used for the birds to protect and care for their offspring. And here Allah is using it for the child to the parent to remind the child that once upon a time it was you upon whom the wing was being lowered. Now Allah has given you that opportunity to lower unto them, the wings of humility, mercy and compassion. So it is obligatory for you to take care of their needs, and make sure you’re able to do whatever you can to facilitate and make their lives comfortable. Let us be clear that nobody can ever really repay parents. They have done much more than you can ever do for them.
Dr. Zubair is a Sr Geriatric Consultant
DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author.
The facts, analysis, assumptions and perspective appearing in the article do not reflect the views of GK.