Mark his birthday with a play!
Here are some scripts that may help:
There are a growing number of books out there on the Imam. Here is a compilation:
- ‘Where is My Imam?’ by Marhuma Shellina Kermalli
- The Last Saviour – The Sun Behind The Clouds – by Fatemazahra Merali
- Where Could You Be? By Abis Kids
- The Valuable Gift – Heavenly Children series by Kisa Kids
- Why Was He Named Al-Mahdi (AJ) – Blessed Names series by Kisa Kids
Lots of practical ideas that we can apply with our children…
*As shared on WhatsApp*
Etiquette Towards the 12th Imam (a.s)
Sheikh Jaffer H. Jaffer – 15th Shaban 1439
10 Etiquettes that we can do daily in our life that can create a bond between us and our Imam.
1. Say Salaam to our Imam every single day. As soon as you wake up say salaam to him. Or for example in sheikh Jaffer’ s house they set an alarm every single day at 3:13 pm and when the alarm goes on the entire family says salaam to Imam Mahdi (a.s). We need to accustom our children and ourselves to say Salaam to him.
2. Every good deed that we do, we make intention to Allah( s.w.a) that we send 51% of the thawaab to the Imam of our time. The Imam should be getting more then what we are getting. We can be more generous then this if we want to. We don’t have to keep it at 51% . You can say for example I am sending 90% or 99%. That’s how we can gift to our Imam.
3. Whenever we go to Mosque, as we leave the house we need to send an invitation to the Imam that: “ Oh Imam come and join us to the program today”. Every act of sadness( wafaat) or happiness ( khushali), we want to be participating with our Imam thus we send him an invitation to join us.
4. Our homes need to be prepared for the coming of our Imam. That means nothing haram or questionable is happening in our house. Our house need to be ready all the time. It can’t be like if Imam knocks on our door and we are like give us 5 mins. Some cool things that people do to prepare for the Imam is for example on the dining table there is always a spot empty where no one sits and they say this is the Imam’s spot. When he comes, he will sit there.
5. We need to take out sadaqa all the time for the protection of our Imam and for his speedy return. We should be taking out sadaqa as often as possible specially if we are broke because we will get 10 fold if not more, back. The niyyat can be: “Oh Allah I am taking out sadaqa for the protection of my Imam and my family Qurbatan illallah”.
6. When in times of difficulty, call out the Imam, reach out to him. We sometimes forget him. We call out to Allah(s.w.a), we will say Ya Ali madad ect.. All these things are great but call out our Imam too: “Yaa Sahibaz Zamaan adrikni, help me”.
7. Visit places that he would visit and avoid places that he would avoid. We know the Imam would visit cemeteries so we go there too. We know the Imam would visit mosques, so we go to mosques. We can watch a mosque program online but our Imam might be at mosque so we need to go there to spend time with him. We might not recognize him but he is there. The Imam would visit sick people so we visit sick people. The Imam would go for ziarrat so we go for ziarrat. All with the desire to be in places where Imam would be. We should also avoid places where he would not be there. Do you see the Imam walking on the beach with everybody half dressed ? Do you see your Imam walking in places where people are not dress appropriately? So then we avoid those places too. If we look in Fiqh it says that we are allowed to go to restaurants that serve alcohol but serve halal meat – let’s elevate that: would my Imam go to that restaurant? No. Then why should I go to that restaurant?
8. Ask Allah in every single Salaat to give you an opportunity to meet the Imam. We should have the desire to meet the Imam and should ask Allah for that opportunity.
9. We need to constantly purify our hearts. All our moral vices that we have, we need to clean them out so that our hearts can recognize our Imam when he comes. The Ulamas of deen tell us that we have two pairs of eyes. The physical pair of eyes and the eyes of the heart. The eyes of the heart when they become purified it is those eyes that will recognize the Imam. It’s not the physical eyes that will recognize him because we have never seen him so how will we recognize him? It’s like talking to a person on the phone and having an image of them and then when you meet them they look totally different from what you had imagined. Same thing with the Imam we picture him this way or that way. But the eyes of the heart will actually be able to recognize him.
10. We need to reflect each and every day if we are any closer of being the servant of the Imam. To help us reflect on ourselves, we can look into the Hadith of our 6 th Imam(a.s) who, when asked by the people why he was constantly talking about Salman Farsi, said not to call him Salman Farsi but refer to him as Salman e Muhammadi . He said to them: “Do you know why I remember him so often?Because he had 3 traits: 1. Salman preferred the desire of Imam Ali over his own desires. 2. He loved poor people and preferred them over those who had wealth and riches. 3. Due to his love for knowledge and love towards those who possessed knowledge like ulemaas. He would always attach himself with those who had knowledge. These are the 3 Characteristics that makes me talk about Salman all the time”. Imagine what that means; If we had those characteristics then the Imam would talk about us all the time:)
- This is a great overview of the amaal for kids for the 15th Shabaan.
- Below is a Activity Booklet on the 12th Imam – great for children up to 12! Something for them to also do while trying to stay up on the 15th of Shabaan perhaps?!
To download, simply click on the link: shabanactivitybooklet (Author unknown)
- Here are a series of 5 mini-books on the Imam (created by Tasneem Mumen)
- Here is a wordsearch on Imam Mahdi (aj) by Islam From The Start
- The video below has a wonderful activity idea on creating a board about the Imam.
Images needed for this activity are available here.
- One mum put together a word search and questions on Sura Yasin for kids, as we will be reciting it three times on the 15th night. Check it out here.
- Kisa Kids have a whole bunch of resources on the Imam, within their Spiritual Season booklets.
- For older kids, why not get them to make a book just for learnings about the Imam? Then whatever they learn about the Imam can be jotted down or stuck down on there and it can be added to over the years.
- Also for older kids, this journal has a lot of information about the Imam.
Yesterday, the Madressa here in Stanmore had a lovely party for 15th Shabaan, with lots of party food (of course!), a short video on the birth of the Imam, a little talk and the highlight of the day – a puppet show!
Check out the full script here – it was a bit hit with the kids!
Buzz Ideazz was at a fundraiser for Sudan over the weekend, which combined celebrations for 15th Shabaan with a very worthy cause! Why not organise something in your areas? Check out the photos below 🙂
There is lots we can do to make the day of the Imam’s birthday special and exciting for our children. Here are some ideas:
- In this post, we discussed ways to mark important events at home, such as decorating, baking, etc. Check the post for full details!
- Another lovely idea shared was to have an empty frame somewhere – this signifies his missing presence. It can stay out throughout the year as a reminder also.
- Share his birthday with others! We received this lovely surprise – a family sharing the love and joy of this day through a plate of fun! The letters spell LABAYK – as the mum said: “The kids spent so much time saying it as they iced it, the know it by heart now.”
- One mum baked treats with her kids, then they wrote a poem and a riddle as to who it was from using the Imam’s numbers (the number our Imam is times the number of panjatan add the number of Gods there are – that was the easy version, that hard version is pictured below!) – then they went and sneakily left it on their doorsteps and ran away for them to find and figure out 🙂
- Why not hold a party for your children’s friends in honour of his birthday, with decorations, fancy clothes and yummy food?
I absolutely love this idea and thought it would be the perfect end to our series on the Imam! Jummah Mubarak 🙂
“This was a project initiated by Stanmore Jaffery’s and promoted by Madressa too. It started off by putting the abbreviations on a wrist band to be a reminder to ask yourself: What would Imam Mahdi (aj) do if he were in your situation? My boys had come across this idea from annex lectures.
So one half term when they were all really playing up and continuously bickering and driving me crazy, I sat them down and told them they were really upsetting me and that if it continued I would cancel all their half term plans which they were so excited about.
Soon after that I heard the older two calling a meeting in the sitting room. They all emerged with WWIMD written on their wrists! It was very sweet as they explained that every time they would fight and argue they would think themselves and more importantly, remind each other what would Imam Mahdi do.
I was so touched and overjoyed. This was a classic example of God consciousness, Amr bil maroof and bringing the !mam into our lives! It worked very well for the next few days and was a pleasure to hear them use the phrase all the time and check themselves.
Kids being kids and human nature as it is, it didn’t last forever. However, it still is a sentence we use often now: What Would Imam Mahdi (aj) Do?”
This is a perfect tool for auditory learners!
For younger children, these short and sweet rhymes by QFatima on the Imam are great!
- Here are some more:
I Will Follow
Who will I follow? Who will I follow?
Everyday, Every day.
I will follow Mahdi, I will follow Mahdi,
All the way, All the way.
When kids tease me, When kids tease me,
For doing right, For doing right.
I will follow Mahdi, I will follow Mahdi,
With all my might, With all my might
✨Twinkle twinkle Hidden Star✨
✨How I wonder where You are✨
✨Among us but we can’t see✨
✨O Imam come set us free✨
✨Twinkle twinkle Hidden Star✨
✨How I wonder where you are✨
My favourite English nasheed about the Imam so far is Al-Ajal, Al-Ajal by Abbas Bandali:
This cartoon nasheed is beautiful:
Call Imam Mahdi:
Voices of Passion:
Crafts are an amazing way to get hands-on learning underway… Here are some examples:
- Birth of Imam Mahdi (as) Collage:
“We started with a big piece of cardboard (roughly A2 size) that we had lying around from a recent delivery. The piece had protruding bits at the top and bottom that added to the 3D effect of the final finished collage. To create the background for our collage, we painted the cardboard using a mixture of metallic gold poster paint mixed with a roughly equal amount of pva glue. We then sprinkled colourful sequins and glitter all over the paint while still wet and then left it all to dry and set.
For the cutout of Imam Hassan Askari (as) and Bibi Nargis Khatoon (as) holding the newly born Imam Mahdi (as), we used a part of the image linked to below:http://amira8.deviantart.com/art/Birth-of-Imam-Reza-188217408
We printed out the image on card stock, which FZ then painted using her watercolour paints and glitter. For the cutout of angel Jibreel, we used a part of the image linked to below:http://ourpreciouslambs.files.wordpress.com/2007/11/annunciation.jpg
We printed out the image on card stock, which FZ then painted using her watercolour paints and glitter. We stuck pieces of thermocol to the backs of the cutouts (creating a pop out effect) before gluing them into place against the gold backdrop using pva glue.
I had explained to FZ at length the analogy of Imame Zamana being like the sun behind the clouds. The sun, when hidden behind clouds, still gives us warmth, light, causes the plants and us to grow and flourish, and without which there would be no life! In the same way, our Imam, though hidden, still watches over us, sees our actions and loves and cares for us. He comes to our aid when we need him (told her the story of Syed Amili being lost in the desert and how Imam comes to his rescue…). We represented this analogy at the top of the collage, using cut out card shapes to create the sun and clouds. We used gold, silver, red and green glittery strips for the sun’s rays and to show the noor emanating from the blessed trio below.
FZ imagined that when our Imam was born, flowers began springing up everywhere (so we put in some felt flowers), all of Allah’s creatures rejoiced (so we added felt butterflies, caterpillars, sparkly animal and fish stickers to the bottom of the collage, although they may be hard to see! Lots and lots of yummy treats were given out (so we used sparkly stickers of cupcakes, ice lollies etc. at the top around the sun and clouds).
We also affixed tinsel decorations at the top and bottom of the collage using drawing pins. FZ practiced her handwriting skills by doing a small write up on our Imam on coloured card that we then cut out and stuck into place.”
2. I also loved this idea from Islam From The Start (www.islamfromthestart.com):
“We made a chart, painting some clouds and a sun. We plan to use it to both visually reinforce the hadith and record our remembrance of Imam every morning. With 40 dots around the sun, everyday after completing the list, the little one will draw a line from the sun to a dot making a ray. Inshallah by Eid we can celebrate a new habit with the remembrance of Imam shining a little bit brighter in our hearts!” Link with details here.
3. Fireworks and T-Shirts:
“We had been discussing the lives and some of the inspiring lessons learnt from our beloved Imam Husayn, Hazrat Abbas, Imam Zainul Abedin and Imame Zamana, and celebrated their wiladats with a couple of fun activities, alhamdulillah.
Using the analogy of beautiful, colourful, pure hearts filled with the love of Allah swt, His Guidance, goodness and light as opposed to ones blackened with sins, we discussed how these 4 awesome personalities, and our Prophets and Imams in general, personified all that is good and were like bursts of colour, spreading out over and lighting up our world with their teachings and their true followers (us!) and how, when Imam e Zamana returns, the entire world will be a haven of beauty and peace.
To visualise this concept, we had fun doing a ‘fireworks in a jar’ experiment! http://www.icanteachmychild.com/2012/05/fireworks-in-a-jar/
Next, FZ designed a t-shirt! She used different coloured sharpies to draw designs on a white t-shirt, using a variety of closed and open ended shapes. We then sprayed surgical spirit (available at pharmacies) using spray bottles, evenly all over her design, and then sprayed some more in the middle of each closed shape. We stood back and watched the magical effect of the colours spreading and blending into one another, beautifully transforming the initial designs into a lovely colourful background.
We talked about how Allah swt says, of our beloved Prophet saw and his household, in Hadith al Kisa: ‘By My Honor and Glory, O My angels! O Residents of My Heavens, verily, I have not created the erected sky, the stretched earth, the illuminated moon, the bright sun, the rotating planets, the flowing seas and the sailing ships, but for your sake and love’ Using fabric glitter pens and markers, FZ added to the t-shirt design by drawing our family, with herself at the centre, holding hands, surrounded by the colourful Love and Guidance of Allah swt through His Chosen Ones, as well as the sky, stars, Earth, sun, moon, planets and seas.
The end result was colourful, wearable art to remind us of these beautiful personages of the family of our beloved Prophet saw, their status as Allah’s Chosen Ones, and how we must strive hard to model our lives upon their example, Insha Allah. (Placing pieces of cardboard inside the t-shirts during the spraying of surgical spirit helps stop the colours seeping through to the back of the t-shirts).
For Shab e Baraat, I also introduced FZ to the idea of defining and being accountable for her personal goals for the coming year, to be revisited next year, Insha Allah.”
4. This visual reminder of how to prepare for the Imam: