Celebrating the Week of the Prophet's Birthday - Part 2

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Last year, we marked the week leading up to the Prophet’s birthday by trying to emulate his characteristics, choosing one for each day. This year we have chosen some different characteristics of the Prophet (saw) to focus on…here they are!

Day 1 – Take some time out to reflect:

The Prophet would make sure he took a time-out from everything and would go to the Cave of Hira to reflect and contemplate. The Prophet (saw) himself has said: An hour of contemplation is superior to an entire year’s worship” (Tadhkerah al-Haqaiq, p. 29). Indeed, meditation is all the craze now, and for good reason! Especially in this fast-paced world, wouldn’t it be great if we could encourage our children (and ourselves!) to be able to do the same – WITHOUT them complaining that they’re bored?!

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. I know of one family who especially created a reflection room, and would encourage their children to go and just sit and think for a while (and NOT as a punishment lol)!
  2. Perhaps we can encourage our kids to sit on the musalla for 5 minutes today? And just be still and see what thoughts come to their head?

Day 2 – Take care of the ill:

We all know the famous story of the Prophet (saw) who went to visit the lady who was sick, even though she used to throw rubbish on him every day. Visiting the sick is SO highly emphasized in Islam, with the reward for doing so being as high as having 70,000 angels escorting the visitor and seeking forgiveness for him until s/he returns home. There are also plenty of ahadith detailing the etiquettes for doing so, such as not staying long and taking a gift.

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. We can begin by talking about the above ahadith.
  2.  Asking them to perhaps call or write a letter/email to someone who is not feeling that great?
  3. Decorate a gift bag and personalizing it before giving it to someone not well.
  4. Making a sincere dua for that person
  5. Buzz Ideazz have created a special Get Well Soon card, which has a dua for the sick inside – these would make unique accompaniments to their gift!

Day 3 – Say the truth:

Well before he announced his Prophethood, the Prophet’s characteristic of honesty was well-known, earning him the title of As-Sadiq – the Truthful one. Honesty is VERY important in Islam, so how do we convey its importance to children, who may possibly lie for several reasons, such as being afraid of the consequences, wanting to entertain us with exaggerated tales, or just experimenting with their concept of reality.

We have all heard the story about the boy who cried wolf, but here is another real life story to share with your children about a 7 year-old boy named Tanner Munsey. Tanner’s reputation for being honest earned him a mention in the “Scorecard” column in the July 10, 1989, issue of Sports Illustrated magazine.

During a T-ball game in Wellington, Florida, Tanner attempted to tag a player leaving first base. When the umpire called the player out, Tanner immediately informed the umpire that he hadn’t managed to tag the runner. Two weeks later, Tanner encountered the same umpire in another T-ball game. This time, Tanner was playing short-stop and tagged a runner as they approached third base. When the umpire called the player safe, Tanner didn’t say a word, but the umpire noticed his surprise at the call.

“Did you tag the runner?” she asked Tanner. When Tanner affirmed that he had, the umpire changed her decision and called the player out. When the coaches and other parents protested, the umpire stood by her decision, informing them that she had learned to trust Tanner, because of his honesty.

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. Share the above story with our families
  2. Let’s ask our children today to be extra mindful of what they say today. At the end of the day, perhaps they can make and decorate a ‘Certificate of Authenticity’ with the ayah: “And cover not Truth with falsehood, nor knowingly hide the Truth.” (2:42). Here, emphasize that they are awarding it to themselves as only they and Allah know exactly how truthful they have been!
  3. There are plenty of books on honesty – read these to the kids!

Day 4 – Pray a little extra:

The Prophet was known for praying extra, with ahadith a plenty describing his devotion to the nawafil prayer, etc.

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. Mybe we could ask the children to pray a teeny bit more, whether it’s a two rakat sunnat salaat, an extra sajda or tasbeeh, or maybe they could recite any of the recommended duas for tonight that they don’t perhaps do…
  2. The Prophet (saw) loved praying Namaaz-e-Shab, so maybe that’s something we parents can try doing (if we don’t already?)!

Day 5 – Give sadqa:

A well known characteristic of the Prophet was that he used to give, and give, and give!  There are many ahadith about the benefits of giving charity – such as prolonging our live, warding of illnesses, keeping problems away from us, not to mention the fact that we are promised 10 times more than what we give!

All of these are a good discussion point to start with our children…but here is one that i LOVED given the fact that we are building love for our Prophet, and that is giving charity (especially when we have less to give), may give us a closer position to our beloved role model!

Below is a story to share with our families.

“Mullah Muhammad Taqi Al Barghani who is commonly known as the ‘Third Martyr’ related that his father saw in his dream the Holy Prophet Muhammad (S) surrounded by so many Scholars of Islam.

However, he saw the son of the scholar called Fahad Al Hilli sitting very close to the Prophet (S). Mullah Barghani says that he was surprised to see this when there were other scholars who were greater in calibre, knowledge and their service to Islam who were not sitting so close to the Holy Prophet (S).

Mullah Barghani’s father asked the Prophet (S) the reason for this, and the Prophet replied that it was because all the scholars surrounding him used to give charity when they possessed something, but if they didn’t have any property they didn’t give anything to the person who was begging or in need. However the son of Fahad Al Hilli used to give in charity despite not possessing anything extra, and used to sacrifice his personal belongings in order to fulfil other people’s needs. This gave him a higher degree of proximity to the Prophet.”

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. Share many such stories with our kids from this site.
  2. Ask your children to give from their own money that they may have saved up.
  3. Make or decorate your own sadqa jar.

Day 6 –  Eat with others:

The Prophet (saw) The Prophet advised others against eating alone as he never ate alone when he had the opportunity to eat with another person:

“When a food possesses four qualities it becomes perfect: being halal, eating it with other people, having started with the name of God, and having ended with the praise of God.”

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1.  Share this hadith with our children.
  2. Invite people over to share a meal!
  3. Involve the children in the prepping and cooking of the meal, as well as the cleaning of the house and setting of the table.

Day 7 –  Say thank you and be grateful:

The Prophet (saw) continually reminded his followers to be ever grateful to their Lord, and the term shakir, meaning “one who is grateful,” is often used in Islam as a name of great honor among Muslims.

IDEAS to help inculcate this fully and with understanding:

  1. Here are some clips which show the benefits of gratitude.
  2. There are lots of fun activities and crafts that can be done on gratitude. Check this page out from Islam From The Start to get started.

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