Library Chats – #5 – The Seven ‘Rules’ For Raising Children

Yasir Qadhi


Channel: Yasir Qadhi


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Miss min. he'll

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sit down while he was alive while the cats with him the de la salatu salam ala rasulillah Allah Allah He will be here one

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of the greatest gifts that Allah subhana wa Taala has gifted his creation with is that to family and is that of children especially Allah subhanho wa Taala mentions at the port on el mercado walborn Luna Zenit will hire to dunya wealth and children are the beautification of this world. The Xena, this is what makes life enjoyable. Even those that don't have a man, where did they find the ultimate comfort of this world in a limited world burn wealth and children or family and of course, the people of Eman even more so they should Ravel in these blessings that Allah subhanho wa Taala has given and enjoy them the way that Allah azzawajal has wanted us to enjoy them. And of course,

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wealth and children are the best blessings of this world or have the best blessings and also, of course have the best trials as well. And of the responsibilities that we are tasked with is the responsibility of raising our children, as our Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, Every one of you is a shepherd, and every one of you is responsible for his or her flock. And so the father is responsible or the man is responsible for his family, and the woman is responsible for her family. Notice the profitsystem literally said, the man and the woman they have the same area of responsibility. But of course, their responsibilities differ obviously in terms of what they're

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going to be doing. But their responsibilities overlap the mother and the father. They have responsibilities to take care of the child your mama has Allah He writes, The children are in a manner that Allah subhanho wa Taala has gifted the parents with and that their hearts are pure, their hearts are removed from any evil. And he writes that their hearts are very easily impressionable. So he advises the parents that to teach the children purity so that the children grow up in purity, and to avoid any evil stains upon the child. Now, in today's brief, you know, just short reminiscing, if you like of some of the topics that have been and I have spoken about

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this in multiple different hot button topics, but today, I thought I'd just combine different topics, I've given a shallow data, remind myself and those that are interested in listening, what I call the seven rules for raising children, the seven irrefutable rules for raising children. And these rules will allow it to either guide you these rules have been shallow to either benefit you. And so make sure that you pay attention and start writing notes down. Okay, the first rule, hope you guys are ready. Rule number one, there are no rules. Anybody who tells you that he or she knows the secret of raising children, anybody who tells you that if you follow this rule, you will become or

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you will begin to have a great child, that person clearly has no children of his own or her own. And this is the reality that every parent knows about. I remember when I first started studying at Islamic Medina, when I used to come back in the summers to give good buzz, and just give lectures and whatnot. The first summer I came back, and I had just finished the Arabic program. And I was asked to give a good buzz around Houston and people come up to me, and they would say, you know, give us some talks about how to raise children or at the time I wasn't even married, much less have kids of my own. And so they would say give us talks about how to raise children. And I thought to

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myself, that's a good topic. Let me go back to Medina, this was the summer let me go back. And let me study the fear of raising children. You know, I'm sure the books are filled, have entire sections about what you should do, what are the manual techniques about raising children. And of course, when you actually start studying filters, every person knows that there are more rules in the books of filter about will do and what breaks will do that about children and how to raise children or how to make sure that they're there upon good manners and whatnot. The books that folks don't discuss children rearing. And in fact, even to be brutally honest, you're not gonna find detailed rules in

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any of the books of Hadith or even a dub or anything of this nature. Yes, you do find anecdotes? Yes, you do find generic guidelines, you do find beautiful, a hadith about the seer of the Prophet system, how he would interact with Hassan and Hussein and others, but you don't find a long list of rules. And of course, at the time, I was single and unmarried at the time I'm struggling, how come there are no rules in a way? How do we know you know how to raise children and of course you realize as you grow older and as you have your own children, that it is of the mercy of Allah subhana wa tada that he did not give us a manual. There is no manual for a parent, there is no handbook that

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every single Muslim child or a couple or whatnot needs to be given that this is how you raise children. Rule number 27 you know, subsection five, do this. Don't do that. No, it is

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And on the job experience, training, you learn as you're going along, you're not going to be following it's not a science, it is really an art. And so anybody who tells you that there are foolproof rules that you need to use to raise your children, that person really does not know what they are talking about 10 There's a famous book by some, you know, Harvard psychiatrist, or something about raising children and the introduction, he writes that, you know, while I was doing my PhD, you know, I wasn't a father or a parent or whatnot. And I developed in my mind, six theories or six, you know, paradigms of raising children. And then over the course of my life, I was blessed

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with six children. So when I was single, and without children, I had six theories. Now that I have six children, I have zero theories, okay, this is the reality of every single parent, the art of raising a child is an art that cannot be taught. It's not science is not mathematics. It's not something that you memorize. And that is why. And I remember when I had my firstborn as well, I felt so unprepared, I felt overwhelmed, I didn't know what to do. And you realize that you don't know what to do, but you're going to have to learn and you're going to have to, you might make some mistakes, and then you realize none of the thing when you're blessed with the second child, and then

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the third and the fourth, when you're blessed with other children, you realize that what might have worked for the first child is not going to work for the second, what worked for the first and second will not work for the third, what didn't work for the first three will work for the fourth. And so the art of raising a child is specific, not just to the child, but also to the culture and to the times and to the environment, it really is an ongoing experience, you cannot have a hard and fast rule. And we thank Allah subhanho wa Taala that no such manual, explicit, you know, a canon of laws was revealed when it comes to the art of raising children. And that is why again, let me be very

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frank here, this is something that every person of knowledge knows that just because you have some knowledge of Islam, it doesn't necessarily make you a good parent. So you see knowledge of fifth knowledge of our P the knowledge of a cloud knowledge of Tobia, knowledge of tafsir. That's not at all related to being a good parent, you can be an alum alhama you can be a half you can be everything and still are able to fail miserably at being a parent and you can be a complete ignoramus when it comes to all of those sciences, and be one of the best parents in the world. So Islamic knowledge will make you inshallah a good person inshallah, if you follow it. But parenting

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and the techniques of parenting are not things that Allah revealed. So this is not a revealed knowledge. And that's something that again, we need to appreciate and realize, I mean, frankly, may Allah protect myself and all of my colleagues and friends but sometimes, you know, the children of people of knowledge are not the best role models and examples and it doesn't it doesn't reflect on the the the knowledge of the parent or the Father, and it doesn't reflect on the child as well as the reality know how to his Scilab his son, you know, ended up rejecting Islam, his son literally rejected being saved in the ship that Allah subhana wa Taala gifted Noah and his people, can anybody

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blame North for this, it is what it is. And you have the exact opposite as well that in the household of Fishtown, you know, his wife becomes the greatest of the Great. So no doubt, parents and society have a huge role to play. But in the end, it is not decisive, and you can have the perfect environment you can have great people as parents, and for whatever reason, and you can even have great parents and for whatever reason, the child does not benefit from that. It's like expecting the child to benefit if they go to the best high school or the best university. In the end of the day. There's only so much that can be done. So the first rule there are no rules is just

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generic advice. So scrap this concept of there being a foolproof mechanism and rule the rest of the lecture is going to be advice generic generic advice that we can use the second piece of advice because there are no rules. The second piece of advice is that when it comes to anything in life, anything there is a three step process that the Quran and Sunnah tell us to do, first and foremost a class sincerity. Secondly, in knowledge Thirdly, I'm an acting upon that knowledge is lost enamel memorize this, it's for everything. If you want to go into a profession or trade, do it for the sake of Allah, learn your profession and trade gets some experience. If you want to learn an art or

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hobby, if you want to start memorizing the Quran, if you want to become an island, whatever it is, is lost in an animal three things all of them go hand in hand, but they go in that order. They must all go together. Now. What has that got to do with raising a child? Well, the exact same thing. The first step is that you have to have the Nia I want to have a good family. You have to have that if lost in your heart for the sake of Allah for the sake of the deen in the dunya. Secondly, knowledge knowledge of what

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Knowledge of parental techniques knowledge of what other people are doing knowledge of what works and doesn't which means you need to take an active interest, ask around, read some books, listen to lectures, and also in your own experience, a lot of this knowledge is not necessarily acquired it is experienced. So the knowledge of being a parent is not necessarily found in a book. Yes, books help you Yes, lectures like this might make you start thinking. But in the end of the day, when it comes to parenting, nothing substitutes experience. And so in order to gain that experience, all you need to do is observe and test and try and of course, the concept of testing a child. It's something

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that's explicit in the Quran in Surah Nisa about the issue of the issue of a person that is

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the orphan whose whose parents have passed away and somebody else is raising the child, Allah Subhana, WA tada says, repetitively uttama, or test to the orphan. So the concept of testing gradually, this is something that is definitely in the haoran. So be aware, see, what happens, see is the child you know, responding to this type of technique or not. And then of course, I'm in which is, of course, the experience in the lab, you actually implement that knowledge, and then you observe the results. So if loss raylan, and Ahmed, that is the second generic advice. The third advice that I want to give is, and of course, we all know this, but again, just to to underscore

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that nothing beats leading by example, nothing beats, your actions, your actions are going to speak louder than your world, your your your words, and that is because obviously, what you say is only going to fall on on deaf ears, if you don't act upon it yourself, your child needs to see you live, what you want to embody, your child needs to see your Salah needs to experience how you're interacting with the world, and how you're living your life. So you have to lead by example, that is the third piece of advice, far more important than lectures that you give far more important than what you say and you rebuking and your anger and your rules is your own conduct. And of course, that

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is very, very difficult, because it's not a one off. It's not just a one lecture that you give, in fact, it is your lifestyle. And one of the things that I think every parent feels is that when they have their first child, especially, they realize that they need to get their act together, they realize that somebody will be looking up to them, like a father or mother, and that they're going to have to live a lifestyle that they want their child to live as well. And that comes with a sense of responsibility. And I have a small anecdote I'd like to share with you that just shows you the the imprint that happens when parents are consistent in some good deed. So I mean, I grew up I was born

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in the 70s grew up in the 80s in Houston. And one of the habits of my parents, my father, especially, was that every time at the time of motive, no matter what was happening, we would all have our family Gemma in or we had a room dedicated for the Salah. And no matter what was happening, no matter what guests were over, even if non Muslim guests were over, everything would have to stop. And we'd go to that room. And we would have our mother Upsala if I hadn't exam The next day, no, no, no excuse. If I had a phone call doesn't matter, everything would stop. And we would go and pray selected mother. And of course at the time growing up as a teenager, whatnot, of course at times is

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a nuisance, whatever you do what you do it okay. time goes on, you know, Allah blessed me to, you know, go to Medina hamdulillah hamdulillah. I stayed in Medina, you know, for 10 years and hamdulillah. And during that timeframe, our customer habit was to pray and help them every single day in Asia. And so obviously, that habit that I had with my parents, I'm living alone, now I'm on my own. I'm going to the gym every day. So that habit is gone. I finished my master's 10 years goes by I'm now you know, in Connecticut, doing my PhD and and hamdulillah. I have, you know, three children, one of them at the time was a toddler. So two are basically of praying age. And this is

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now the first time after 10 years where I'm on my own in a department and there's no Masjid close by. And we're back in the American scene of the 80s, mid 90s that I used to be in right. And Subhanallah I had never thought about this right. But slowly their communicative time and I would feel an emptiness, even though for 10 years, I wouldn't feel that emptiness because I was in the huddle. But come up with time I start feeling some type of yearning and I realized, you know what, I should also start praying Muslim with my kids in New Haven. And so panela since that day, up until now, as I'm giving this, this talk to you guys, that if I'm not in the masjid for Muslim, our family

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comes together and we pray mother live together something that my father began back in the 70s. He did it every single day. I had completely forgotten about it. You know, I'd come

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Lately, it wasn't something I consciously thought about. Yet when the time came, and I became an adult, and I had my own children, that consistency of doing something, it became a part of my own imprint. And I myself was shocked, like positively meaning a good shock, like, wow, Mashallah, that's something that happened as a young man. Now, when I become a parent, when I become an adult, and an a father to children, I am absorbing that and passing it down to my children, and I inshallah, to Allah pray that when my children, become adults, and have their children as well, that inshallah that is something that their grandfather started is still going to be with them. That's my

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point, lead by example. It's not just a matter of, you know, doing Sunnah. And again, I speak for myself that Alhamdulillah, Allah blessed me, with parents that are very religious, they're always praying, you know, always involved with Islamic activism. And it wasn't something that was shoved down my throat. But growing up in that environment, generally speaking, you absorb those values, so you lead by example. And not just by talking or by lectures, that is the third generic piece of advice. The fourth advice I want to give myself and, and all the parents out there, and again, by the way, I am the parent of four children, two boys and two girls, three of them are teenagers,

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well, one, just my shoulder turned 20, who just finished being a teenager. So three of them are basically of that age, and one is a tween. So, you know, I have plenty of experience of all different ages, you know, and hamdulillah. In this regard, my fourth piece of advice to myself and all of you is to think long term, not short term, think long term, not short term. What do I mean by this, most of the time, when your son or daughter messes up when something bad happens, you will react thinking about today and right here, and now you react in a manner that is meant to drive home, your anger, or your rules right then and there. And what you don't remember, or you don't

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think about consciously, is that a time is going to come in all likelihood, where you're not going to be in that picture anymore, and where your son or daughter that you're getting angry at for whatever crime or whatever evil, whatever thing that they've disobeyed, that a time will come when they will be a parent, and they will have their own son or daughter. And they are going to reflect and remember, oh, I did something like this. And my mother said this to me, my father did that to me. And they're going to remember how you treated them and what you did. So think about that timeframe, and not just the Battle of the day, but the overall war, if you like for the minds and

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the hearts of this child, right. So I'm giving the metaphor of many battles, winning the war or losing the war, sometimes you have to lose a battle to win the war. Sometimes you have to concede in order to think of the larger picture might I'm not saying always be soft, I'm not saying you know, always forgive, sometimes you have to be hard. Sometimes you have to put in discipline. What I am saying is think not just for today, 10 years ahead, 20 years ahead. 50 years ahead, when that child is a grandfather is a father or mother of his own, and you are gone from this world, what they need to remember is your HELOC and how you treated them. And again, I am again, I speak from my own

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personal anecdotes that how my parents raised me. So Pamela, I noticed so much of that in how I'm raising my own children. You know what I say what I do, what not, it is something that I'm automatically seeing. And that's why we need to think long term, not just short term, there's so much going on these days. panela I genuinely feel sorry for the children of this day and age. I think a lot I grew up before cell phones before the internet, I think a lot that the worst we could have done and whatever way you children used to do back in the 80s. And what not, it is nothing compared to what the kids can do now. But then I asked parents very bluntly, imagine if you had

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access to the internet when you were 15. Imagine if you had a cell phone given to you when you were 1617. What would you do? What would How would your life be different? Don't expect your son or daughter to be? I mean, firstly, let me be let me ask you an honest question. Were you as innocent as your parents thought you were? Were you as much Well, it's about a cola completely whistle clean and never did anything behind their backs that that they expected you not to do. So if you could could do what you did. And then you know, basically end up where you're in Charlottetown a good place. You don't think your son or daughter was going to slip up? You don't think they're going to

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do things that they shouldn't do. And this isn't a justification. It's a contextualization. I mean, you did wrong, I did wrong. Al Hamdulillah we ended up here. When your son or daughter slips up, they're gonna slip up exponentially worse than you doesn't mean they're exponentially worse. It's the society. It's the problems that we have. And so err on the side of caution, be compassionate, but think long term rather than short term. That's what I'm saying. I'm not saying to never discipline. I'm not saying to never be harsh. Sometimes you do need to be harsh. Yes, the rule is gentleness. Yes. The rule is compassion. Yes. I just gave a hug this week. By the way.

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Weak that family and mercy go hand in hand, listen to it online. But still, when all is said and done, it's not just about that mistake they made today, you have to remember that your your reaction to their mistake is going to be more important to them 10 2030 years down the line they're worried about today, right here. And now you should be worried about many, many years from now and also passing that law and that religion and that generosity down generation to generation. So the fourth general principle, think long term, and not just short term. The fifth advice that I give myself, especially myself, May Allah forgive all of us for sometimes not being able to live up to what we

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are self say, We are human beings at the end of the day. And you know, sometimes they'll say something, and I know that I'm not living up to it the way that I should. And this is one of those things that advice number five, there are no rules, advice. Number five, spending quality time is more important than spending money on the children. And this is especially true for mid career. Men and women. It's one thing when you're just married, you don't have kids, you have to dedicate extra time at work. It's one thing even when the kids are very young toddlers, okay? And yes, you have to rise up in your career, you have to do the extra mile. But there's going to come a point in all of

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our lives, all of our lives where we're living comfortably, and we have a fork in the road, we can spend more time and more effort and gain more money, but at the expense of our family time. Or we can cut off that that promotion, or cut off that extra source of income and spend time with the children. And what I'm saying is that spending time, especially with young men and women, those those formative years just to be with them, it is more important than the extra money you're going to earn so that you can buy them the extra laptop or the extra computer, the extra iPhone or the extra luxury, just your presence, just being with them. Just spending time with them. And you know,

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there's a beautiful Hadith, this that some authentic Hadith of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam that are prophets of the law, why do you sell them said, everything that is devoid of the worship of a law of the vicar of Allah subhanho wa Taala is considered law who and settle, it's considered a waste of time, everything that you are not actually worshipping of Allah. By the way, he didn't say how long, very precise wording is He did not say how long he simply said, it's a waste of time, which is true, you're not benefiting from it. Everything that doesn't have the worship of Allah, it is a level, it's something that is of no value, except for for things for things that

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you're doing. That if you do them, that you will be rewarded for and it's not a waste of time. And one of them, one of them is a man playing with his family, literally the word is more laboratorio God, Allah, Allah, Allah means to just play with them to be merry with them. The other three, by the way, is a man traveling or walking between two goals. So for example, if you are walking to the masjid, or if you're going to the house to bring reconciliation, or you're doing a good deed, and you're in the process of that good deed. So the point here is that doing something for the sake of a good deed is a good deed. Another point that is mentioned is training your horse. And this is all of

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the arts of manliness. And then another point that is mentioned is learning swimming, for example, that again, being fit what not. And one of these points, as we said, is a person playing with his family. And of course, we learned this from this era as well, our processes and racing with our Asia, our Profit System playing with Hassan and Hussein, just quality time is so important. So this is a very, very important advice to myself and all of you that there will come a point where giving up an extra source of income or giving up that promotion is actually better for your deen and your dunya. And just to be at home with your wife and your children, or if the woman is the one earning

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to be at home, and to be a figure that the children can interact with just to sit with them, laugh with them, talk with them play games with them as our profit little loss and him did with his Wi Fi issue. And of course, that's why I mean, if you sit and you play games with the children, this is inshallah would be an act of worship, if you do it, to spend that quality time to, to give those memories to them. And I asked you as parents Now, look to your childhood memories aren't some of the sweetest memories that you have a few minutes that your mother or father might have sat down with you and just played with you aren't some of your most precious moments, those days where nothing

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really happened in terms of money in terms of just this time that was spent with the family with your parents. So I'm asking you to think as well your children need that quality time from you. So advice number five, that spending quality time is more important than spending money. Of course, this is a general advice. Sometimes you don't have that luxury and you have to go to work and whatnot. So again, may Allah make all our situations easy for us.

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But again, generally speaking, especially when the children are in the formative years and formative years, I mean, here, especially, you know, six or seven, up until 1718. That decade, these are the formative years, so important that there is a father figure who acts like a father and a mother figure who acts like a mother, so important that the balance between masculinity and femininity, to see what is the role of a real father and a real mother, you know, Subhanallah fathering a child does not make you a father, and giving birth to a child does not make you a mother. No, you have to do more than that. And so being in the life of the child, and showing the child what it means to be

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a worshipper of Allah as a man, or a worship of love as a woman, and then demonstrating that a flower that is also very important when it comes to raising children. Advice number six, as the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a family, that's very, very true. Make sure that you examine your friends, and your circle of influence and relatives that come to your house, and your Masjid and society that you deal with. Because your child is not just learning from you, your friends come over, you go to people's houses, you have a community, I'm asking you for the sake of your children to look at who you associate with, to look at those whom you invite to your house and

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whose houses you go over to and asked you to think about the community that you associate with because especially in the West, it is so important that every one of us connects with the question, every one of us has a larger community, we have to have that broader village because you see, Islam as a religion is not just a bunch of things that you memorize, it is a lived experience, you see it in action, and therefore every child needs to see the reality of Islam, they need to see it as it is manifested in front of them. They don't just send them to Sunday school and then that's it. No, to see a community to have your righteous friends come over. And then overall, the children interact

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with your children interact with their children, and they see your friends you see, you know, the their children see you that is a part of how they're going to absorb Islam via osmosis, you should like the cultural osmosis. So connect yourself with good friends. And if you find that a friend of yours is not somebody that you would want your child to associating with, then why are you associated with that person? If you and again we're talking about business deals and and corporations and who is in the office? That's something separate? I'm talking about? Who comes to your house? I'm talking about who whose children are you bringing over and whose children are you

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exposing your children to so it takes a village to raise a child and therefore rule number six or advice number six, connect yourself with good friends and good community and see overall who is influencing your immediate family. And the final piece of advice which is very important to never ever, ever underestimate this and that is make sure that you constantly make dua to Allah subhanho wa Taala for righteous children. How many times in the Quran does Allah subhanho wa Taala mention two hours for children over half a dozen dollars in the Quran or for children right was the leafy dhulia to Allah you know make my children you know righteous and Rob benevolent as wodgina with

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Buddha yet you know karate I know gentlemen Delphine, Mama Allah, grant me a spouse and a family that is going to be a coolness of my eyes correlate and make us of the Imams of the leaders and Ibrahim Ali Salaam as he's building the Kava as he's building the GABA he makes the right to Allah subhanho wa Taala are Abidjan, Mo Kamal seletti women the reality that all are from my progeny as well make those who are establishing the prayer. So so many doors in the Quran, about children and about having good children and Allah blessing you with good children. How can you possibly raise your hand to Allah and ask for wealth and not ask for children which is more important which is more

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important, so how to love what use is your wealth when your whole family is not, you know, worthy of that love and respect Subhanallah of what to use and if you have a loving family, it is worth all the wealth of this world. The drafters of the Quran or ideal memorize them if you're not able to or until you do that anything from the heart is good or law graduate righteous children. I will make my children of those who pray Allah grant my children Eman and toccoa. I will not protect my children who all types of evil make dua to Allah constantly and realize as our Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said, the drop of the parent for the child is always accepted and another Hadith It is never

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rejected. So constantly make dua to Allah for your children. And by the way, as you make dua, it serves two purposes. Number one, that obviously the burqa and then

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the answering of allies wages, and number two, so you're asking a lot so you want to learn to respond. Number two, you're reminding yourself constantly that you are a parent you are a role model.

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You have a responsibility. Frankly, this is one of your biggest responsibilities to be a parent, if you have children, this is one of your biggest responsibilities. So when you make dua to Allah, you are reminding yourself of that responsibility. So the bottom line, these are seven generic pieces of pieces of advice. There are no rules, as I said, but in Sharla, these generic pieces of advice are generally you know, useful and and

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very productive in terms of one's own in terms of applying it to one's own life cycle. And in shallow data. There's no negatives from these generic seven

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pieces of advice. And also, by the way, obviously, much more can be said, and I hope to give other series of lectures and also by the way, leave your own comments and feedback about what other generic pieces of advice that that you would give when it comes to raising children. final point, not necessarily piece of advice. But again, it goes back to something I said in the past is that listen, dear parents, we're all in the same boat together. I'm a parent as well. I'm speaking to parents here. We're all in the same boat. We're trying, we're struggling, we're striving and the end of the day, we do our best and we leave the rest to Allah subhana wa Tada. There's only so much we

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can do. It doesn't matter. You can be the most pious person No, I was one of the greatest prophets. And yet his son ended up the way that he did it but on him his father was an idol maker. He was the main idol worshiper and maker in the in the village, and Abraham comes out to the way that he comes out. So there's no necessary causation. Nonetheless, we try our best and generally speaking, generally speaking, houses of piety produce children of piety, so you try your best to be a house of piety and love and compassion and mercy make lots of dialogue to Allah subhanho wa Taala think long term lead by example try to implant through your conduct good aspects and ideas in the the

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impressionable minds of your children and ask Eliza to bless you with the best in this world and in the next world. jazak Mila halen said I want a Kumara to Lahore barakato