Every parent desires the best for his child. In fact, it is only parents and perhaps some educators that would wish for their children and learners better than what they themselves enjoy. In modern times the best is reduced to the “Best comforts of the world.” The ‘best’ car, the ‘best’ house, the ‘best’ profession, the ‘best’ shop, etc. Each of the ‘bests’ mentioned pertain to the world that is here now.
Islam does not advocate being hermits or abandoning the world but at the same time Islam teaches us to be mindful of the life of the hereafter. In fact, it would not be incorrect to say that Islam lays greater stress on preparation of the life of the hereafter than the ephemeral and transitory life of this world.
It is necessary for all parents to focus their attention on providing ‘the best’ for their off-spring for the hereafter. An important, rather essential element for achieving this ‘best’ is consuming of the Halaal and the pure. The modern mother oftentimes is lazy to cook thus subjecting her children to ‘take-away’ foods. This is a most harmful practice and could lead to the spiritual ruin of one’s beloved children.
Thought provoking incident of the king of Afghanistan
The former rector of the world renowned Darul Uloom in Deoband, Hakimul Islam Hazrat Qari Muhammad Tayyib Sahib (A.R.), whilst delivering a lecture, explained the importance of feeding one’s children Halaal and pure and abstaining from the doubtful with the following incident:
I remember an incident which apparently appears to be very simple but portrays a great lesson for the intelligent ones. It concerns Amir Dost Muhammad Khan Sahib, the king of Afghanistan. He was the father of Amir Abdur-Rahman Khan Sahib and the paternal grandfather of Amanullah Khan Sahib. He was a very pious king whose talks were proverbial.
On one occasion, when he entered the palace showing signs of anguish, grief and sadness, the queen asked him, “Why do I see you so sad today”?
He replied, “News of a great tragedy has reached me and that causes me this grief. The sad news is that when an enemy had attacked the borders of Afghanistan I dispatched our son with an army to defend. The depressing news is that our son has been defeated. He is retreating and fleeing the battlefield. The enemy is advancing on his heels, conquering vast tracts of land. Now I am afflicted with 2 problems:
- I have lost the kingdom, and
- my son is returning defeated, showing signs of cowardice.
This blemish will remain with me till death that my son is weak and a coward.”
The queen responded, “All those reports are incorrect, totally false! My son will never ever flee from the battlefield. It is possible for him to become a martyr but showing his back to the enemy and returning is impossible. That information is false.”
The king then explained, “This information is from the Government’s Intelligence Services.”
She replied, “They are all liars!”
Thereafter, the king remained silent, thinking to himself, “Who will explain to this woman, she does not understand the affairs of the government and she has branded all of them as liars?”
On the following day, when the king returned home, the queen asked, “What’s the matter, today you seem very happy?”
He replied, “What you had said has turned to be true. In fact, our son has vanquished the enemy and is returning home after driving them out entirely.”
The wife remarked, “Alhamdo-lillah! My words have proved to be true.”
The king then enquired, “How did you proclaim, with such confidence and certainty, that our son could not have been defeated? Did you receive Divine Inspiration?”
“She replied, “I am a woman. How can I receive Divine inspiration? Also, I am a queen living amongst all these luxuries, so how can I acquire such exaltation?”
The king further asked, “How then was it possible for you to express with so much conviction that all the information conveyed to me had been false?”
The queen responded, “That is a secret which I do not like to divulge.”
The king was bewildered and curious to know the secret which his wife, the queen, was concealing from him. Therefore, he persisted and claimed that there should be no secret between husband and wife and asked her, “Who is a greater bearer of the Queen’s secret than the King?” He was insistent with his inquiry due to which she was forced to disclose her secret.
She then explained, “When I had conceived your son, the prince, I had promised Allah that I would never allow any doubtful morsel to enter my stomach. Hence, from the affluence of your kingdom I did not even take a single penny. Moreover, I did not even take anything from your personal earnings and salary. Instead, I began sewing topis [hats]. These I sold and sustained myself from its income. For full nine months I lived a life of absolute piety, consuming only Halaal food.”
“Thereafter, when your son was born, instead of handing him over to a wet-nurse I personally breast-fed him. I also extended my pledge for a further 2 years and ensured that no doubtful substance entered my stomach. In that manner, with the efforts of my handcraft, I earned and consumed only Halaal. Furthermore, whenever your son cried for milk, I first made wudhu, performed 2 rakaats of nafl Salaah, supplicated to Allah and only then breast-fed him.”
Good deeds are not accepted by Allah
Rasoolullah Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has said, “Whosoever bought a garment for 10 dirhams of which one dirham had been Haraam (unlawfully obtained), then Allah will not accept any of his Salaah as long as that garment is on his body.” (Mishkaat)
Hazrat Abdullah ibn Abbas (R.A.) narrated that, on one occasion, the following verse was recited in the presence of Rasoolullah Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam:
“O People! Eat from the earth, Halaal and pure.”
Thereafter, Hazrat Saad ibn Abi Waqaas Radhiyallaahu Anhu requested the Nabi Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam to make Du’aa to Allah that he becomes a “Mustajabud Dawaat” [one whose du’aas are always accepted]. Rasoolullah Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam replied, “O Saad, make your food Halaal & Pure and you will become “Mustajabud Dawaat”. By the Oath of that Being in whose control is the life of Muhammad Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, whenever a servant places a Haraam morsel into his stomach, then for forty days no good action of his will be accepted, and whosever’s flesh is nourished by Haraam wealth then that flesh is more suitable for Hell.” (Ibn Katheer)
Consuming Haraam has an evil effect upon one’s children
Hazrat Shaik Ibraheem Shabrkhaytee Maaliki (A.R.) states:
Once a person went to visit a Saint of Allah [a Wali] he was met at the door by a youngster in a very haughty manner. The visitor greeted him in the formal Islamic manner but the arrogant youth ignored him and did not respond.
The visitor was quite astonished and enquired about his attitude from some people (who were around). They informed him that he was the son of the Saint whom the visitor had travelled to meet. When the Shaikh came out, the visitor was surprised to behold a most humble man with very good manners. Immediately, the thought crossed the mind of the visitor concerning the disparity between such a pious, saintly man and his insolent and disrespectful son.
The visitor was unable to contain himself and enquired of the Saint about the pathetic behaviour of his son. The Saint responded by saying that one should not be surprised by this situation. He went on to explain that once, when he had been hungry for several days his neighbour became aware of it. That neighbour had been very close to the king of the time so he fetched some food from the king’s palace for the Saint. After eating that food, the Saint had an intense desire of fulfilling his sexual urge. He shared the bed with his wife and that arrogant child was the outcome of that act of copulation.
The position of our Pious Predecessors had been such that if any doubtful substance entered their stomachs, they used to forcefully vomit it out. In fact, due to doubts they even refrained from many Halaal edibles also. Hazrat Imaam Ghazzali (A.R.) (D. 505 A.H.) quotes the following statement of Hazrat Omar (R.A.):
“We avoided 9 out of 10 things for fear of indulging in Haraam.”
Hazrat Khwaja Nizaamoeddeen (A.R.) [D.725 H] has said:
“Somebody asked Hazrat Ibraheem ibn Adhum (A.R.) to disclose the ‘Ism-e-Aazum’ (that Great Divine Name by means of which Allah accepts the du’aas). He replied, “To keep the stomach free from Haraam and the heart free from the love of the world is the ‘Ism-e-Aazum’. Following such precautions, whichever Name of Allah with which one wishes to call out becomes the ‘Ism-e-Aazum’. (Fawaaidoel Fuaad)
In these troubled times where, at every step, one is confronted by Haraam, what is the solution to protect oneself from such a challenge?
The following procedures must be implemented to save oneself from consuming Haraam:
Firstly: One should always ponder upon the fact that one will not remain forever in this world. Ultimately, when one will certainly die and appear before Allah, how will one face Allah if one keeps on consuming Haraam?
Secondly: Exercise restraint by avoiding anything that is doubtful.
Thirdly: One should study the authentic books depicting the Laws of Shariah.
Fourthly: Adopt the company of the Pious.
Fifthly: Instead of increasing one’s expenditure one should do one’s utmost to reduce it as much as possible. One must never deliberately indulge in any Haraam.
Sixthly: One should continuously make Du’aa that Allah grants one Halaal sustenance and protects one from Haraam.
May Allah grant us the ability of earning and consuming Halaal and may Allah save us from every form of Haraam. Ameen