Friday, June 17, 2016

The Prophet, (s.a.w.s.) said, "Abusing a Muslim is a sin, and killing him is disbelief." (Bukhari and Muslim)

You’ve seen the headlines: Mother Kills Children for “Talking Back”, Spanked to Death in the Name of God, Mom Charged with Murder of 5-year-Old Son--Beats Child to Death because He Broke the TV. 1

These are clear examples of children who have been abused and oppressed by their parents. But what about the more subtle forms of abuse and oppression that a parent may place upon her child? As we try our best to raise our children and guide them to do what’s right, we must re-examine ourselves to make sure that we discipline within the realm of Islam.

What is this realm you may ask? There are varying opinions as to what extent we can discipline our children in Islam. Some scholars suggest it’s completely forbidden to hit our children when they’re under the age of ten.2 Others allow it for this age group as well as older children. But a unifying thread that you will find amongst both opinions is the following:
Ø Children should not be hit in the face.
Ø Children should not be hit severely (cutting of skin, breaking of bones or teeth).
Ø Children should not be verbally abused.
Ø Children should not receive more than ten smacks.
Ø Hitting should be a last resort.
Ø Hitting should be done lightly.3

Of course none of us is perfect. We may fall into error at times when it comes to correcting our children, but this does not excuse us from possibly having to be held accountable for mistreating them. We might even get away with our behavior in this world, but what about in the hereafter. Begin taking an account of the way in which you treat your child.

And when you find at times that you may have been excessive in your child’s disciplining, how about telling your child you’re sorry. Exactly, say “I’m sorry.” Why . . . you may ask? First of all, it helps you to be responsible for your improper actions. In addition, saying “I’m sorry,” teaches your child that you make mistakes, too, but you try to make up for them. It also teaches your child to make apologies when he has done something wrong to others. Another reason is it lets your child know that he didn’t deserve to be treated in such a fashion. 

Grandma Jeddah is the mother of 11 children and 13 grandchildren. She has taught hundreds of students for over 30 years at an Islamic school in Los Angeles, California.She is the author of, Discipline without Disrespecting: Discover the Hidden Secrets of How to Effectively Discipline Your Muslim Child--And Keep Your Peace of Mind while at It.  Order her e-book or Subscribe to her free newsletter at --  and

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