What Should We Be Teaching Our Children
Channel: Zaid Shakir
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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa Salatu was Salam. Let's say you didn't more saline water and he was he was sitting in
Santa Monica rahmatullah wa he will go to cash.
handlers. great honor to be here. Many of you might not think that what you're doing is significant, but it's really very significant in that you've all been inspired by an idea. And that is the idea that we can give our children something better than what they're receiving in the public schools. And inspired by the idea that we can bring Islamic principles which are just healthy religious principles. Now, in terms of the topic, what we should be teaching our children, I think our foremost objective should be the creation of balanced, wholesome, honest,
human beings, who live lives based on principle, and who exemplify good character in their dealings with other people. A prophet sallallahu wasallam you all know the Hadith where he spoke to Margaret Magellan, and or a bizarre or the Allahumma. And he said to them, the tequila shift from A
to B. C, to hassanal. Hasler, who here are highly connected to Hulu can happen. Be mindful of the law wherever you are. And follow up any misdeed you might do with a good deed that will wipe it out because the good deed is weightier in the scale. We'll call it can Nashville colo can hassle and deal with the people with good character. So right here, there are three very important things that should be fundamental to our educational endeavor. The first trying to instill a healthy fear of a lot in the child. When I was growing up, I was in a Muslim but the old people would say you need some of that old time religion.
And the old time religion was a healthy fear of God. A healthy fear of Allah subhanho wa Taala that sometimes we can become so intellectualized so steeped in philosophies and that we forget at the end of the day, if there's no taqwa, as there's no mindfulness of the law, if there's no fear of Allah subhanho wa Taala, as one wise man said, Roxanne Hekmati, Maha football law. The Fountainhead of all wisdom is the fear of God.
In the mailbox shall law men a bad rule in that it's a laws, God's knowledgeable servants, those who have knowledge of Him
who fear what am men ha from a coma Robbie, he will not unless I'm in hardware, or in an agenda here.
For the one who sees this station of his Lord, and guards is sold against the things in inclines towards the paradise will be his refuge. So the fear of a law is something we should endeavor to instill in our children. And one way to do that is to just remind them, that
transgression has punishment,
transgression as punishment, so in ways great and small. So for example, the classic example, we tell the children don't touch that stove, you're going to burn your hand and they touch it anyway. See, you disobeyed me and you burn your hand. Now, if we disobey God, if we do so by our law, one day, they might not even understand but as they grow, the message will resonate more and more, one day, if we disobey God in this world, we're going to burn our entire body.
And someone's over there is crude as well, isn't that the message of Korea. And if we can instill that at a young age, that for disobedience, there are severe consequences.
And that's how the old folks reared their children. If you disobey there's a severe consequence in this world, and a worst one in the net. So to use just little things in daily life, to reinforce this message, which wisdom not to overwhelm our children or to make them defeated, to keep their hope alive, their dreams and aspirations but at the same time, to let them know that this is a very important part of our human life, our human existence, that our lives
doesn't stop with our life in this world. And when we go to the next life, we will suffer or enjoy the negative or positive consequences of our actions in this world. So using things that all of us can find, emphasize according to our experience, according to our children's cognitive abilities to reinforce that message, so he said it tequila, hazelnut, wet be Seattle Hudson, a temporary hair, and to encourage pinions and our children, that sin, as we mentioned, has consequences. But with sincere repentance, you can nullify those consequences to emphasize that and to emphasize the forgiveness of God, a lot to web. Add to web Rahim, Allah, Almighty God is the one who's most
willing to accept repentance, the Most Merciful. So even if they do a small slip that might be when they're older, consider a survey on a sakarya or lesser sin, to still encourage them. You shouldn't do that. as Muslims. We don't do that. We don't tell fibs. So you're going to have to ask God to forgive you to just encourage them to get in the habit of communicating with God with a lot harder, and asking a lot of Tyler for his forgiveness, and encouraging and emphasizing the lessons without sending them down. Now we're going to go over the lessons of Toba. First, you have to stop your sin. Secondly, you have to fall to never return to the sin. Thirdly, after Express remorse, fourth, the
decision is associated with a right of another human being you have to restore that right? No, but in a way they can understand to emphasize you should never tell another lie, to never return to that same how bad it is. And next time you tell a line with a wash your mouth out with soap, and carry through with the threat
and get the nasty tasting. So because our mouths were washed out many a day, so the next time they think of telling us
we're gonna have the soap again. But something that's not harmful, but really emphasizes the seriousness and gravity of the situation that lying or saying something bad about another child or laughing at someone that might be afflicted with a certain malady, that all of these things are bad, and forms of speech, and that there are consequences for that. And it might not be so it should be soap
or something you deem appropriate because you all know your children, Bethany's only general suggestions, and they're based on my personal experience, which is way a long time ago when most of the things our parents did to us, if you did to your children, you will all be in jail.
So this is just general advice. Don't take notes and then report me to the Department of Children and Youth Services.
was you might try it, you know, try the self.
So just encouraged to encourage Kenyans to encourage teens because this is one of the characteristics of our community, as mentioned in the Quran, were to a large amount.
So turn all of you believers all together to a law and repentance in order that you are successful. So this is all of us will do who is poorer Wow. Gemma for a long while he Jamia is plural. So this is Toki Jamie and he will help me room for three times over his emphasize it could just say what to Willow lawn I look and fulfill him and the meanings comes in but when to ally geneon au has me known Allah Allah.
So Kenyans repentance is very, very important to instill so fast if we see our children slip. Instead of just a monitoring them as we normally do, we might think about asking them to repair to ask alone when you say your prayers at night, ask a lot of forgive you. Which brings me to another very important point.
Have your children pray at night and as soon anyway, as they're older you can teach them to do I miss noon that night when you get up in the morning when you go to bed at night.
Pray to God, I pray to God to get it in the hands of the moon, to have intimate discourses with God, because this deepens our religious city. And I know a lot of Muslims don't take time. But when we were going off, as I said, we were Christians. And every night before we went to them, we leaned on the side of the bed, and we said, our prayers, Oh, God, give me a new bicycle.
So we should encourage our children, to have some intimacy with our Creator. And not to just live lives where religion becomes a formality is all I have to do select but to stop and pray, and as a lot harder, and night to forgive any sins that might have been committed in the day to ask that a lot of time that brings them safely through the night brings their soul fluids sweet, and to restore them to life, because the sleep is the lesser depth.
And so this helps to cultivate a sense of religiosity in the child that sometimes we're lacking, generally speaking, so that's something also that can cultivate a healthy consciousness of Allah subhanho wa Taala. Also fun things. I mean, one thing as communities, we can do more hikes, we've done family hikes, and the kids love it. And it's not a religious thing per se, but you get wherever you're going to some Vicar do the silent prayer. So there are there and they're praying with everyone else. And they're around the older members of the community. So it provides positive role modeling, but in a non religious environment. So you know, I didn't know musty sob could climb a
tree like that. So now I have a new respect for must be sadness. I couldn't even could have to remove these bad man's
Wow. All right. So things to get us together as a community, I think very powerful presenters there they feel part of something bigger than their family, bigger than the school so you see 300 Muslims and they're all hiking in the woods and telling stories and they stop and have a soccer game in the field on the side as the food was pretty good too. So, those things I think we should put more emphasis on inshallah. So he mentioned, fear of a lot of popular hatefulness consciousness of a lot will add to the estate yet and has an atom who has and pinions repentance. Mohali, can NASA be who can hustle and treat people of good character, we should constantly emphasize this. And one of the
greatest things we can do for our children in this regard is to get them away from the television. Now you might consider programs that you get
movies, kiddie movies, something good and highly recommended wilderness wildlife, not Disney cartoons. Because you know, Disney cartoons, most of them have subliminal messages in the and a lot of those messages are antithetical to sound religious teaching, but wilderness stories and outdoor adventures,
things of that nature, you might encourage, and the child can earn it. If you do good in school, you can watch a movie this weekend, I'll get you some popcorn, you go call your friends, oh, we'll make a little movie theater for the kids so that they're not totally divorced from the medium. Because my experience when there's just total cut off, they develop a craving for it. So they're at relative's houses, watch television, they're just glued to it. So if there's a healthy balance, where we control the content, we can inshallah give the best of both worlds. And I've spoken to people who've gone through both experiences, and it seems to have a little bit where the contents control and the
hours are limited and then it's earned is better than cold turkey having nothing at all Long Island where you stand. But the important thing network television, I would say any parent who allows their children to watch network television is derelict in their parental duties
is derelict in the parental duties. I mean, the Smurfs
are performing actual witchcraft ceremonies in their little Smurf things. Now, that's some serious conflict. So these programs have his
hidden agendas, and to say nothing of the commercials, which are scientifically designed by psychiatrists, psychologists, sociologists to find the best ways not only to get our children to consume, so we're in the store Mommy,
not only to get them to consume, but to get them to identify with certain brands for life. And there have been studies, some of you, I'm sure have read that they tried to find out why do people go to certain gas stations, and they found out that that was the gas station their parents went to when they were children. So that brand Chevron is embedded in their mind or testicle. Because that's where mommy and daddy gassed up. So based on that, they're developing very sophisticated methods to create brand identification in our children and is done through the television program is done through the commercials, and is very sinister, and is very subtle, is based on subliminal seduction
by putting unconscious messages into the various commercial. So 10 network television, I'm not saying all television, get your own DVDs, and VHS is but network television, I think, definitely a serious parent who has young children has to protect their children from that. And as we said, we can make it fun for them, they can have the weekly movie with their friends, they got popcorn, and you choose something you've reviewed, and you know, it's very wholesome, as a positive message. And then that's the movie of the week. So they can kind of neutralize the cold turkey that might, when they are around, it really be them to be glued to it. And the greater point is the networking, the
programming encourages disrespect for authority, lewd and indecent behavior. So I mean, just
don't understand, we just wow, this is how
we dress. That's the new style.
And that is antithetical to the messages that we're trying to convey to our children, that any decent person who has any values is trying to convey so all of those messages, Bart Simpson, who knows what else Beavis and Butthead and all of these things, and then the kind of Nickelodeon type, Kitty shows, all of these messages are being conveyed to our children that life is giving you should be silly. And even here in America, that wasn't always the case. Thomas Edison was a millionaire when he was 13.
When George Washington was 15, he wrote what 50 principles of a successful life were something that affects some you might have seen it at a very young age. So kids went to Grammar School, and after three or four years of school, they're learned, then introduced to the classic of a liberal arts education, going through rhetoric and logic, grammar, this way they used to call a grammar school, they get the trivium. And then subsequently, they get the quadrivium. But when they were 13, or 14, they were prepared to use their mind. And they were serious about life. They kids used to get married when they were 1213 years old, wasn't common at all, read the old marital statutes. And a
few states is still on the books where the young kids were getting married. 1312 years old, a young man with his wife. Now they're wondering, you know, where's the next Mickey Mouse movie going to be? Or can I borrow your Scooby Doo DVD?
adult also, you know.
So it wasn't always the way it is here in this country. where the majority of people aren't Muslims. It wasn't always like this. And America became great on the basis of something no one should look in this country. I think though, you know, these categories. Control the world there was a sound basis they will good principles of good solid work ethic, willingness to sacrifice work hard, save your money, be thrifty, be accepted.
So there are good values and principles. So we'll call it can so those programs will undermine good character. guarantee. respect for authority, courtesy, etiquette, sound manners, thank you. You're welcome, please, holding doors, all of those things, empathy for the weak,
all of those characteristics will be undermined and the opposite. So we could try to insulate our children from those things on the one hand, but we have to constantly reinforce good character. Did you say please, you didn't say thank you. They gave you so and so gave you something I didn't use a pleases until it becomes habitual. That man at the store you should have held the door You shouldn't have set the door slammed in his face. He was an old lead
constantly, we have to be very vigilant because repetition as you know, is the one of the best pedagogical tools repetition, repetition. And the Heartless the people are Qur'an want to say it over and over and over so they don't forget. repetition, repetition and the same thing and other aspects of religious training constantly. Please, please, please, still is a reflex please be impossible to ask for something without saying, please. We've done possible to receive something without saying thank you. The impossible to see someone approaching the door without holding it through constant repetition, drilling, drilling, drilling, in a nice way, not yelling and screaming
when I told you a million times, it's a please. I don't know why you're so violent and such mean temperate spirit. I don't know why you're always hitting other kids.
So now I'm not in a mean way, but in a very nice way where we just sneak up on them, but drive the message home.
So those are three things definitely we can do. A fourth thing is extremely important is to teach our children the love of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam. First by
taking time to remind them of who the Prophet was Salalah while he was settling, and what he looked like. So the Shema is
what his height was, how his hair was. Color was his hair. His eyes weren't so that he becomes more than an abstraction, the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam those
great abstraction. Let's make them real.
So when they're wrapped up in the sports figures, they have the baseball and basketball cards right? So favorite player. A lot of my Muslim kids can tell you how tall LeBron James is, how much he weighs, what color His eyes are, where he went to high school, how much his sneakers cost,
that you're going to buy them next week.
is all on the card, right? So we should have the serial card is an idea for you. The serial car we have a deck right? The Cirrus hava cards. No who was the tallest, the happy?
Who who lived the longest? And about our process of listening. So teaching them again and and not in formal lessons depending on their age, more formality as they get older. But very informally. Oh,
the process here was a little longer than that. Or Oh, it was so now they can relate to that. The process of a sudden like to wear a white
white gel of you wearing this jr is very nice. So now it's more than an abstraction the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam,
the Prophet sallallahu Sallam who look like this, who walked like this who talks like this? Who told these jokes? Tell them some of the prophetic jokes. I'll tell you one of the practice jokes every week. Do good in school, and just go there listed in the Yeah.
Remember where daddy is, I'm sure have been translated. Again, humanize the Prophet sallallahu Sallam not to make a mundane or ordinary but to make him more than an abstraction so that the love can grow. Or I want to be like that when your child does something positive from the prophetic virtues of the project.
They will love that because he taught us to be kind. Or it's a merciful act to the animals. panela no man once gave my mother in law was reading about the Hadith where the man scooped water with his shoe and gave the dog and some water to drink was forgiven.
So the child does something merciful to an animal, or comes home, you know, they were, they found a bird at school, and everyone's throwing rocks at it, and I didn't throw any as often, I tried to stop them, I'm doing so great, the pastor will really love you, because he taught us, some of them to be kind to animals. Now, they're positive actions are a reflection of the prophetic teaching. So that makes them feel good. So it's not just feeling good, because I did the right thing, but is feeling good, because I did something the Prophet would love some of the lighting or send them. So we can be in the cultivate, in a practical way, using the lessons of everyday life and everyday
living a healthy love for the process, some will lie they will send them and then to let them know when they're following the process. So as opposed to the Prophet did this. So the light was settled, and
therefore you should do it.
See that? denying them the agency, as opposed to you're doing this, that's something the Prophet did. So Allah, hi new sentiment, he would love that, to see you doing that. Now they have the agency, they initiated that positive action, and now it's affirmed by the prophetic teaching. So if we can constantly be on the lookout for things that we can affirm, in our children's behavior, from the prophetic virtues, and teaching, inshallah tada that will go a long ways, towards instilling in them a healthy love of the practice of law, value, self, and a desire to follow him. From the line of seconds, you're already following the prophet and a lot of things you do. So a few more things in
childhood process of the life son will be proud of your male piano. So those are just some practical things that we can do. And that's a very important thing, love of the process. Now, some of Mahalia send them to cultivate is a nice little book, in fact, is given out free by the Saudi embassy is in Arabic, but those who read Arabic can kind of go through with the other scholar, as we move our ladder come up Doris to the left side of the line to send them a little book was 200 pages very nicely done. And few years ago, they were given them out by the crates, as very nice, even has the molded in there,
is given out by this body over. So things you can do to just informally introduce various aspects of the prophetic tradition. A couple things from the prophetic teachings and something that the scholars have the skill to
emphasize, we should avoid feeding our children. The Very Best of food all the time, should avoid ice cream constantly pizza things they love.
And give them ordinary food as much as possible. And then periodically give them something they really, really like. So that they appreciate the blessings of Allah. If we constantly give them the best food,
and constantly give them the food they like, they'll take the blessings of love for granted. And that can make the hearts become hard
or cold. So that's some advice that you see some of the stars emphasizing. And many of them, even though they had the means they would never give their kids the best of food, shooting, give your kids the best of clothes, even if you're rich.
Because, again, they'll take the blessings for granted and in my aggregate them, Visa v the poor kids. So even if you have means and you're wealthy, you should dress them at a moderate standard, not to one extreme or the other. You shouldn't dress them like a poor person, because that might lower their self esteem. But you shouldn't dress them in the very best and fine as soon as the other kids either be jealous of them or try to make fun
Have them to pull them down because they see them as being over them. So one should try to maintain the balance, that's a characteristic of our ummah. And that will help in their development so that they won't take the blessings for granted on the one hand, and on the other hand, they won't see themselves as better than other children, and therefore develop an arrogant and or condescending personality. So we should try to maintain a balance in that regard, in terms of food, in terms of clothing, and in terms of work, we should get them accustomed to working. I know we had a class as a toner recent Has anyone ever change a tire, there was no one in the whole assembly Who would ever
change the car tire. And we should have our kids even if we're not inclined towards that when they're a little older. Take them nurse, Muslim Afghani garages all off mission Boulevard, take them, when they get a little teenage, take them to work. And pay that even if they can afford to hire them pay the proprietor money to pay them. So you're paying the salary. So they'll get in learn and get their hands dirty, and learn to work with their hands. And that develops humility, and it develops self esteem, virtue, and a person that they know how to do practical things, and they're earning their own money. So they don't know you're really paying, it could be a way to give them
their allowance through the back door. But as you get older, you might think about that during the summer vacations. And these are things that a lot of the Zionist groups do, what do they do when they're kids in the summer, they send them to a kibbutz in Israel, to move off the land and hike and get outdoors and to work. So these are things that parents might consider so that the children grow up. And they're balanced the process of law, Salome was a shepherd, he worked, he didn't have a free ride. And so that develop character helped to develop his character. Another thing we should do is martial arts at a very young age, because hominum, you're with the Department of Homeland Security,
but really is nothing sinister
at a very young age, because number one, it becomes very easy for them. So if they start martial arts and their 20 year old, and bones are stiff, and if they grow up doing is easy, they don't have to think about a cat or something, I do this and do that now. It's just it comes naturally. And if you start them when they're very, very early, it becomes very easy. And so they do that 15 years from six or seven years old, until they're 21 years old, they've been absolutely master
of particular art. And the important thing is not to beat up people good to have healthy self esteem. And that makes it easier for them to be Muslim in an environment that's hostile. So there's a lot of kids will shrink back and you know, start
looking at me funny.
And but they have a healthy self esteem, you know, you know, we look at it, you got a problem.
We could talk about it, you don't want to talk about it, we could go outside, you know,
no Muslim feel good about myself. So healthy self esteem. And that's very important in children. So it's not about fighting and being a bully. And a person who is confident of themselves will never start a fight. The best martial artists is the one you would think was the biggest winner.
That's the best martial artists because not the ones, the ones beating on their chest and flexing and elbowing people and that's the one that you just don't even consider. That's the one you just you know, yeah, okay, I understand some issues.
So that's what we want to cultivate in our children, so that they have confidence in themselves. And they're not afraid to be different. Because they have confidence in their ability to protect themselves if someone has a problem with their being different. So for that reason, and when they're very, very young, it's easy to teach them, it's easy to train them. They love it helps to blow off extra steam anyway. So that's something you might also end and it develops self discipline develops, self control, discipline, the ability to exert
pain, tolerance, all of those things that are
Very important in developing a balanced, wholesome personality. And that's why the boys and the girls. So those are some things and hopefully, we didn't say anything inappropriate or misleading. We pray that a lot, Allah blesses you all for your tremendous efforts. And your children are blessed. And they're, they have a healthy childhood, then they have a wholesome childhood. And then they have the space to be children. It is serious, we are in serious times, but not so serious that we shouldn't allow our children the space to do the things that kids should be doing. I was
recently in a hotel at one of these conferences, and I was watching the television, this program called the current affair, giving myself away. And they had one there, this guy from Canada, who
I think his father had died or something. And so he had to basically be the man of the house, he never had a childhood. So what he did use 29 years old, he went to Salt Lake City first he came to California, Santa Monica, California, he met a Mormon missionary. He said he was a 16 year old orphan, they sent them to Salt Lake City. He went to high school and relived his high school years. And then he graduated early. He's 29 years old, the teachers noticed he was mature and seemed to be bored by the curriculum.
But anyway, he ended up he graduated, got a job at a computer place,
rob the computer place of $100,000. And then he ran back to Canada, and they eventually caught him. They asked him why he did. He said he never had a childhood and he wanted to have a childhood. So
we should try to make this space for the children to be children to enjoy their childhood years. But to let them know that these years of preparation for something that's serious, and to to go to one extreme or the other to deny them the childhood. Because everything is serious, serious, serious, is an extreme that's not healthy. The other extreme is to
have them over indulge in childhood and like it's an end. And not a means preparing them for a later stage in life that is very serious. That would also be an unacceptable extreme. So hopefully we can be balanced. We can give them the space to be children, but let them know that they're preparing for something far greater and in that regard certain things on acceptable because these things won't serve them well in later life. So I'm going to stop there was you all are feeling much success. Again, thank you for this opportunity. We're helping