Encourage the kids

Muslims Praying 5 Muslims praying

Thu, 15 Apr 2021 Source: Abdul Rahman Odoi

In this season, it’s godly to see our youngsters running from mosque to mosque, throwing fisticuffs to garner a lot of the Iftar delicacies - “pinkaso”, porridge, fruits, packed rice and all.

Most of them vanish when the compulsory Salat and “taraweeh” are due. And we, as parents, stand aloof, sloganeering that they are kids, and be allowed to make merry. And that they’ll start fasting when they get of age.

Ideally, fasting becomes incumbent on children once they’ve seen their monthly flow or have began having wet dreams. These two occurrences are the determinants of what we call puberty in Islam, regardless of the age bracket.

Though it doesn’t behoove children to engage themselves from abstaining from food and water in the stipulated hours of fasting, reservations must be made to encourage them to fast on pilot basis.

It is mentioned in Quran 66:6 that “O ye who have believed, protect yourself and family from the fire whose fuel is made of stones and people.” So, there’s an uphill task on parents to devise flexible strategies to guide their kids to fast, albeit, they may not have gotten to the puberty level yet.

Supposing a kid is in lower primary, he could be made to fast till 10:00 a.m. before he takes breakfast. The timing for breakfast can as well be changed for those in upper primary too. That was the routine my father put me on when I was in class five.

Family, evil, now, is no respecter of age. Therefore, it’s expedient that, as parents, we polish the hearts of the young once with nothing but God-consciousness when they’re in their listening years. Remember, a child’s mind is empty (a tabularasa). It picks and acts on whatever it’s fed with.

More so, it shouldn’t be of them to abstain from food and water alone, but parents must be fervent on their kids to start observing limited night prayers with them. Those who are above seven years, ought to be made to stand in salat and taraweeh consciously. When these are far met, the hearts of these innocent kids will forever and solely be glued to Allah and His dictates.

The Turks have a proverb that teaches that fear for the future of your children, when you don’t hear them cry and laugh hysterically when Salat is ongoing. A word to the wise is, indeed, enough.

Columnist: Abdul Rahman Odoi