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Essential Principles That Can Help Muslim Parents Raise Their Children

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A good upbringing is one of the most valuable gifts that parents can give to their children. Parenting can pose to be a difficult task and it can get a little confusing for parents. When it comes to Islamic parenting, there are certain principles that parents can follow to ensure that their kids turn out to be God-fearing beings who will be an asset to the Ummah (community). Here's a look at the important principles:

Parents as best role models

When children are young, they are in the process of learning the difference between right and wrong and the proper way to behave in an environment. It is the responsibility of parents to teach their kids how to do this and the best way to do this is by leading through their own examples. It is the responsibility of parents to teach kids how to select a good environment and how to choose the kind of people that should be in that environment. This will make sure that the deeds of the kids turn out to be pure and good. Children have an inborn nature to be good and pure and that deserves to be nurtured. Parents are the ones who have the onus to guide and take care of their kids. If left alone, kids can steer in any direction depending on the kind of people they interact with. Parents need to lead by example by doing good first as their kids will model their behavior.

Children are born pure

Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "No child is born except on Al-Fitra (Islam) and then his parents make him Jewish, Christian or Magian, as an animal produces a perfect young animal: do you see any part of its body amputated?" (Sahih Bukhari)

This hadith of our beloved Prophet (ﷺ) shows that Allah has created children sinless, pure and with an inherent tendency for good and with belief in one God. The principles of Islamic parenting involve parents to understand that a child's inherent nature is to be good. If a child misbehaves, it is because of his or her environment. Children will act according to what they see, hear and observe.

Kindness and mercy are basics of upbringing 

Our beloved Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) used to treat everyone with mercy and kindness. He was the kindest to children and would let them climb over him while in prostration. Parents of today would get angry if their children climb on their back while they are in prostration and while praying. However, Prophet Mohammed (ﷺ) understood that it is a child's inherent nature to play and hence, did not stop them. Parents need to understand that playing is essential for the overall development of a child and they benefit from this social, cognitive and emotional development.

Where do you need to draw the line for your child? 

Our beloved Allah has given us boundaries to stay within. Without the existence of boundaries, chaos would exist in society. The same goes for children. They need a set of boundaries that can guide their behavior and offer them the freedom to behave and act within them. If children do not understand the boundaries then they will be testing their parents with their behavior to see what is acceptable and what isn't. When children are taught beforehand about the good and right behavior, they will be equipped with guidelines to act within their boundaries.

Teach your kids their responsibilities 

Children need to be taught about their responsibilities. Having responsibilities will make the child productive, reliable and independent. This makes the child feel that they have a role to play in the family and also in society. They will develop a sense of belonging and will learn to be a valuable member of society and family. They will also learn to be accountable for their actions.

Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "Every one of you is a guardian and is responsible for his charges. The ruler who has authority over people is a guardian and is responsible for them, a man is a guardian of his family and is responsible for them; a woman is a guardian of her husband's house and children and is responsible for them; a slave ('Abu) is a guardian of his master's property and is responsible for it; so all of you are guardians and are responsible for your charges." (Sahih al-Bukhari)

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