All praise is due to Allah subhana wa ta’ala, Lord of the Worlds.
Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh, my dear brothers and sisters.
Remember my post ‘The Power of Intention’ in which I wrote,’ As my children grow spiritually, so do I.’ I’ve been tracking our spiritual journey from start to beginning and wanted to share it and get your reaction. It will be too long and time-consuming to write in one post so I will break it up into several posts, Insha’allah.
The foundation of the children’s spiritual development is definitely TAUHEED. Laa ilāha illa Allāh is ingrained in every soul to be born and the very first right of every child is to be taught this kalimah by his parents (or guardians). Let the very first word a child says is ‘Allah’. Remember how we use to quip to our babies,” Say ‘Mummy’, sayang.” Or ” Da-da. Say ‘da-da’.” I was watching my friend’s 11-month old daughter point to a red can and say ‘Coke’. By the way, a young muslimah, at the age of 17, presented a paper to the World Health Organisation, describing the practices of major corporations targeting young children through advertising, spending millions of dollars on R&D to find ways to get kids hooked to buy their products when they are older. Our children ARE being programmed to eat McDonald’s and smoke Marlboro’s. Sorry, parents but it’s a fact. (Another post, Insha’Allah)
Laa ilāha illa Allāh means your child believes and accepts that THERE IS NO GOD BUT ALLAH. In his mind, there is absolute conviction that God is Allah and Allah Alone. I taught my boys this through showing them creations of Allah Almighty that is around them. I remember carrying Daniel in my arms and Adam standing near us, telling them about the Creator of the sunflower in our garden. One of the them said (I don’t quite remember who), ‘ Allah makes beautiful flowers, Mummy’. Masya’Allah. They were still toddlers, about 3,4 years old at the time. We were in Pangkor on holiday in 2007, when Daniel just stood silently and watched the sun set. He turned around and said,’ I said thank you to Allah for the beautiful sunset.’ Subhana’Allah. My tears are threatening to spill again, remembering my awe seeing Daniel appreciate Allah Almighty’s creation AND thanking Him for it.
Looking at them now, I have no doubt in my mind that the foundation of Laa ilāha illa Allāh has been firmly established in their mindset, may Allah protect them and keep them on the Straight Path. Insha’Allah, the boys will stay firmly grounded with Laa ilāha illa Allāh regardless of where they are or who they are with. I made the intention for Islam to be their protection from the trials of fitna and the suggestions of Satan, because the world they are growing up in today can easily cause them to stray from the Truth and all I want for them is to achieve a beautiful Hereafter in Jannah. May Allah subhana wa ta’ala accept my intention. Ameen.
I believe before anything else is taught, a child must know and establish TAUHEED first. Every effort must be made to ensure this and the child is taught muhasabah i.e. self-check to eliminate, at the very beginning, any possibility of the child succumbing to thinking that ‘there could be others powers that exist besides Allah’ (Allah forbid). This includes magic, sorcery and the local bomoh issue. (Refer to my post ‘ Magic, anyone…?’)
One way to know if your child has developed a strong TAUHEED base in his heart is when his speech and actions mirrors his Taqwa. For example, ‘ Insha’Allah, Mummy, when I get extra money, I want to buy the Republic gunship.’ Or, ‘ You know, Mummy, Allah makes it hot today to challenge us during Ramadhan but he gives us a breeze during our break (after iftar) to cool us down.’ These examples are just some which were spoken by my two boys recently. I am constantly amazed at the quality that my two boys show in their conversations. Allah Almighty’s name is mentioned in most of their sentences, Masha’Allah.
We take for granted that because the concept of TAUHEED is taught to our children, we assume they understand it but what is more important is whether TAUHEED is ingrained in their character and mindset. This is first and foremost the responsibility of the parents to ensure that the child has developed TAUHEED and Taqwa to fully realise his khalifah of Allah potential, Insha’Allah.