True Wealth

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When a person is focused towards an objective or purpose, he is by nature driven from within himself to make great sacrifices and undertake hardships to achieve that objective. To the extent that he is determined to acquire the said objective, to that extent he will apply and dedicate himself towards the desired goal. The burning mid-summer heat or the freezing winter cold do not deter him. He drags himself through days of illness and dedicatedly sails through storming times to reach the shore of his purpose. This is witnessed daily in all walks of life. For some people the object is the business and the next million. For others it is sport and the dream of a gold medal. Yet for some it is the thrill of catching that really big fish in the early hours of the morning. It could even be  the dream of becoming the doyen in one’s profession, or dozens of other similar things. In order to achieve these objectives, people sometimes sacrifice even that which is most cherished in the life of ordinary human beings — one’s children.
 

WESTERN LIFESTYLE IS HELL
The western materialistic way of life has made mankind’s objective the acquisition of wealth and luxuries of this world and to sparkle in its glitter and glamour. To this end the west has advanced in leaps and bounds in trying to make this world a heaven (though the western life-style has proven to be hell — the rate of suicide among those who live this way of life is sufficient proof of this). In the process, among other things, the west has long sacrificed its most valuable and cherished assets — its children. One does not need to elaborate on the mess that western society has made of its children This is not surprising from those who are devoid of Imaan. The tragedy is when Believers have lost sight of their true objective and have, at least in practice, made the acquisition of worldly things their purpose in life, they too in most instances have lost their children.

ACCUSING FINGERS
One should objectively consider the general condition of the youth —  our sons and daughters. What are their ambitions and aspirations? Who do they love to imitate — Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and the Sahaaba (R.A.), or kuffaar idols? What do they value? What are their past-times? How do they spend their weekends? Who are their friends — the answers to these questions are well-known. Yet when pointing accusing fingers at our children about the path they are plodding, the questions to ask ourselves as parents are:
* How much effort have I made on my sons/daughters to make them upright Muslims?
* How much time do I dedicate towards talking to them and encouraging them about Deen?
* How much have I made it my business to know where they are going and what they are doing?
* Did I take steps to ensure that they do not join the wrong company?
* Have I created a proper Deeni environment at home which is conducive to bringing up soldiers of Islam and which is free from the instruments of Shaitaan?
*  Have I made efforts to engage them in such activities which boost the Imaan and generate the consciousness of Allah Ta’ala?
If one has satisfactory answers to these and other similar questions, and yet one’s child has strayed, perhaps one would be absolved of one’s duty and responsibility. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has declared: “Everyone of you is a shepherd and he will be questioned regarding his flock.” Thus we should consider whether we have satisfactory answers when we will be questioned on the day of Qiyamah.

PRACTICAL STEPS
Among the practical steps to take immediately which will insha-Allah assist greatly in guiding our children towards the right path are the following:

1. Company:  Good company is vitally important. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is reported to have said: “A person follows the creed of his friend, so be careful about who you befriend.” Bad company will corrupt the child despite the positive influences that may be exerted at home.

2. Role Model:  Young people easily follow whoever they find as a role model. Make the Sahaaba (R.A.) and the pious predecessors the role models for our children. Daily, time should be spent with our families reading about the lives of the Sahaaba (R.A.). The book “Stories of Sahaaba” by Sheikhul Hadith Moulana Muhammad Zakaria Saheb (R.A.) is ideal for this purpose. Many have implemented this and have witnessed the tremendous benefits.

3. Environment: The correct Deeni environment is absolutely essential. This environment must be created at home by ensuring that all members of the family are regularly performing their salaah, daily reciting the Qur'an Shareef and engaging in Zikr of Allah Ta’ala. The T.V. and videos are indeed instruments of great entertainment for Shaitaan who sits back and watches how the hayaa  (shame and modesty) and Imaan of Muslims is subtly plundered by this evil box. We think we are enjoying ourselves but Shaitaan gets a bigger kick out of our foolishness.


         Apart from the home, where do our children spend the most of their time? While many aspects could be discussed here, in this limited space only one aspect is highlighted:  Besides a handful who are very conscious of Deen and are punctual upon their Salaah and other injunctions of Deen, who dress and behave as true Muslims, who keep their gazes lowered and do not intermingle with ghair mahrams, who keep the company of the pious and refrain from vices and sins — besides this small group hardly anyone who enters a secular university comes out unscathed. According to first hand reports, in local universities many Muslim girls lost their chastity within months of admission and openly discussed it with others. Some even lost their Imaan. If we throw our children into these Imaan-consuming and hayaa-devouring dens, do we have satisfactory answers to the questions that will be posed to us on the day of Qiyamah?

4. Literature: In consultation with experienced Ulama, one should acquire and provide appropriate literature to one’s children which will kindle the flames of Imaan in them and build their akhlaaq (character). Novels and magazines of the kuffaar, in a subtle manner, calculatingly destroy the akhlaaq, hayaa and even Imaan of adults and children alike. Many newspapers also are, at least in part, of a pornographic nature. The Imaani environment of the home should never be allowed to be polluted by these anti-Imaan instruments.

SACRIFICE
Hence we have to sacrifice much to save our cherished wealth — our children. The reality of the value of this wealth will only be realised when we are laid in our graves. At that time all the vast empires will be left behind without any benefit to us. However if we leave behind pious children, they will daily remember us and pray for us. The benefit of this will reach us in our graves. Therefore, with hikmah (wisdom), kindness and affection coupled with firmness, continuous efforts with perseverance and most of all constant earnest duas, we can insha-Allah still save the next generation. If in the process we earn a few million less, or live with less luxuries or even with just the necessities of life, but our children are saved, it is a very cheap bargain.
       May Allah Ta’ala protect us and the children of the entire Ummah, Aameen.

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