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Muslim Blogs > HamduRabbi's blogs > YOUNG SINGLE MUSLIMAH MOTHERS AND EDUCATION
YOUNG SINGLE MUSLIMAH MOTHERS AND EDUCATION Sort by:
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HamduRabbi
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total posts: 37
Posted on Mon, Jul 10, 2006 14:22

Young Muslimah Single Mothers Facing their Children's Education. A sister was kind enough and very courageous to raise a hypothetical issue (front her stand point) of a young Muslimah single mother struggling with work, her own school/education needs and, at the same time rearing her children. Unfortunately, such a situation is not hypothetical. It is rather a common occurrence nowadays. It is the illustration of fathers bargaining their parental obligations away for this world to the detriment of their families. The children are innocent victims of fatherhood failure. The causes may be different from one case to another. However, the results are the same: young mothers faced with nearly insurmountable odds. More than in any other situation, here the young single Muslimah mother has to draw strength from her deen, from her emaan, put her trust on Allah (swt), seek His help and guidance. Allah (swt) knows best. He knows our situation better than we do. He allowed it to happen to test us. In the Holy Qu?ran, Almighty Allah (SWT) says: 1.Alif-Laaam-Miiim. 2.Ahasiban-naasu any-yutrakuuu any-yaquuluuu aamannaa wa hum laa yuftanuun? 3.Wa laqad fatannallaziina min-qablihim falaya-laman-nallaa-hullaziina sadaquu wa laya-lamannal-kaazibiin. ?Alif-Laaam-Miiim Do men imagine that they will be left alone (at ease) because they say: we believe; and will not be tested? Lo! We tested those who were before you. Thus Allah knoweth those are sincere and knoweth those who feign.? The Holy Qur?an: Surah 29, Ankabuut (The Spider); Verses 1,2,and 3. (Transliteration and translation from: the Holy Qur?an by Muhammad-Abdul Haleem Eliasi; the book?s references are under the blog on the Qur?anic verse on Polygamy) Allah (swt) knows best. None has the right to comment on the divine words without true knowledge based on sound and solid grounds. May He forgive us, because we do not possess such a knowledge. One can say though, taking shahada is just the beginning of a long and arduous journey towards finding one?s true self and earning Allah (swt)' rahmah, hoping for his forgiveness and the ultimate reward of Jannat. For the new convert mother, this is particularly very difficult to understand. She may have had a fairly relatively easy life before her conversion. Now most of her social ties have been severed. Her family, close relatives and friends would seldom understand her decision. Her resources have shrinked because the divorce has taken a toll on her assets. She has to cope as a single mother with sometimes very young children to provide them with a proper education, within a context of which she is not familiar yet. In all situations, education is a combined effort. It requires the parent?s (1) awareness of his responsibilities; (2) his commitment to fulfill his obligations; (3) making his children aware of what is at stake and involving them in the process; (4) seeking outside Islamic resources and (5) involving the child?s day care or school. 1.Awareness of parental obligations is the starting point in properly addressing children?s education and reaching satisfactory results. Often parents are not really aware of their responsibilities. They let thing go on the least resistance path, leaving the children on their own to find their way through the basic education and skills provided to any student in the secular school system. By being aware, the parent will take additional steps and supplement the child?s education with the Islamic ethics, knowledge and manners. 2.Commitment to fulfill parental obligations. This is a daily act of leading par example. The way the parent lives their religion, and particularly the mother, will have the most important impact on the children. In the so called Muslim countries in the Middle East, the Indian sub continent, North Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa, it is understood that the examples set by the mother will determine the children?s success in life. This is so true because, she is much closer to the children at their youngest age when they are the most receptive. It is even truer with a single Muslimah mother in North America. She is the only example they have. As a result, she has to be very careful with her behavior in all circumstances, to send the right signal to her children. She?ll have to make sure that (a) she offers her prayers on time, (b) she reads out loud what she knows of the Qur?an as often as possible, (c) she makes time to increase her knowledge and share it with her children to their level of understanding, (d) she avoids any behavior not concomitant with the Islamic principals such as flirting with men. (e) She should take every opportunity to talk to her children about Islam. On the issue of prayer, at this time of the year, the mother has the opportunity to pray Fadjr, Asr, Magreb and Isha at home with the children either participating, if they have reached the age, or at least watching. Keep in mind that it is permissible to hold one?s child while praying. The Holy Prophet (SAWS) led the prayer one time, holding a young girl on his shoulder or beside him, depending on the different stations of the prayer. On week-ends, it is advisable for the young single Muslimah mother to go to the local mosque and attend the regular prayers with her children. It might be important to have a wali, a spiritual guide, a relatively elderly man to whom she can confide for direction and support. She is still at an age where she needs a fatherly figure. 3.Make Children aware of the Importance of Islam. We have the tendency to underestimate our children?s capacity to understand and grasp the situation in which they are. There is no need here to hold long or alarming discourses. It would be sufficient to tell them that they are Muslims by the grace of Allah (swt). They should know that being a Muslim is a great blessing that has unsurpassed rewards but also carries great responsibilities. When they go to school, they should be proud to say that they are Muslim and behave with ethics and responsibility. This will protect them from peer pressure and earn them respect from their teachers and other students, In Shah Allah. 4.Islamic Resources Outside of the Household or Family Unit. You know the female politician who said: ?it take a village to raise a child?. This is so true in Islam. In traditional Islamic societies, the child is reared by the whole community. This has both good bad effects. But in North America, we have to be much more careful and much closer to the education issues our children are facing daily. Outside resources include the local mosque and influential Muslims neighbors. The local mosque may have a week-end school, and/or an Emaam. The young single Muslimah mother may explore and find out what educational support she can get from there, at cost if she can afford it, or free when it is available. In our Masjid, the Islamic Center provides a full time learning institution from elementary to high school. It is accredited by the State. It is expensive though and not all parents can afford to pay the tuition. However, the school provides week-end classes, for which, if the parent does not have the resources to cover the cost, the Islamic Center will step in. There is also a Hafiz (one who has memorized the whole Quran) who teaches children some short surahs, about an hour before Magreb. The point here is to use all available resources. 5.Let?s not neglect the public schools or day cares. It is important that those who oversee the children during school hours know that these children are Muslim. For instance the issue of diet in school districts that provide meals (breakfast and lunch), it is paramount that the meals contain no pork products or any other non halal food. I have a friend who takes his two years old son to a day care. He made the staff aware that he is Muslim. To his surprise, he found that some of the teachers were also Muslim and there were many students who also were. As a result, the day care has a policy to not offer pork products to the children, regardless of whether they were Muslim. The day care management found it much safer to avoid any potential confusion. Many school districts are being more accommodating to diversity. Dedicated teachers are more open to searching for the true and presenting it to their students. When the Muslim child reaches the level at which he can participate in social study classes, he may want to volunteer and present topics on Islam to his classmates. He can do this only if he has been reared as a Muslim proud of his religion and involved in its practice. This is a Dawa?ah work that is very important and effective for the child. It exposes the young Muslim to a form of worship that is so crucial to the expansion Islam. It builds his self confidence and makes him more committed, beside the rewards he gets from Allah (SWT) for his efforts, regardless of the results. Ultimately, the young single Muslimah Mother must seek to remarry. No adult?s deen is complete without marriage, as it prevents us from committing evil, or even approaching it. We Muslim men should avoid shying away from marrying Muslimah with children. We men, should open our hearts to love children, particularly if they are not our own blood. I?d venture to say that, were a Muslim to put his trust on Allah (SWT), marry a Muslimah with children, help rear those children to be righteous Muslims, Allah (SWT) would reward him with incalculable benefits in both this world and the thereafter. This is just a succinct introduction to a very important problem. I hope it will provide some direction to young single mothers struggling with their children?s Islamic education. All power is with and from Allah (SWT). May Allah (SWT) forgive me for my mistakes and shortcomings. Parents should always return to Almighty Allah (SWT), pray to Him, and seek help from Him. He is the only One Who provides. He is the One Who brings the best solutions to solve his bondservants problems. May He m


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total posts: 6
Posted on Tue, Jul 11, 2006 12:00

JazakAllah khair for your encouragement and helpful suggestions.


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HamduRabbi
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total posts: 37
Posted on Tue, Jul 11, 2006 05:04

Asalaamu Alaykum Wa Rahmatullaye Wa Barakatuhu. Bismillaye ArRahmane ArRahhime Al Hamdulillaye Rabbil Alaamine All praise is du to Allah (SWT) CHILDREN ARE A GIFT FROM ALLAH (SWT) From a hadith recorede by Ibn Majah, the Holy Prophet (SAWS) is attributed as saying; "Honor your children and bring them well. Verily, your children are a gift for you". From this hadith we learn that Allah (SWT) chooses to extend his merci on us, makes us a favor by giving us children as gifts. Hence, we have the responsibility to honor such a gift with the utmost care. It is a way of thanking Allah (SWT). To show Him that we are grateful, we have to rear the children to be righteous Muslims.


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