Mrs Nazneen Karim, a Kenyan Muslim Woman, activist for women's rights and writer/editor, talked to the Global Association of Moslem Women correspondent about the important responsibilities of mothers in the holy month of Ramadan.
Nazneen karim says the most important thing for our children is to first of all understand why we fast and the spiritual aspect behind Ramadan and not make it ritualistic by worrying about the food only. There are many spiritual aspects behind this month which are often forgotten.
This mother of 4 says she would like to encourage her children by doing tafseer of Quran with them at least two or three ayas per day in English and try to make a habit to teach daily duas with understanding Insha'allah. Fasting is not only to refrain from food and water but lying, cheating, gossiping amongst other things and patience.
The head of "Ahlul Bayt - as- Sisters Network" (ABSN) States that the mothers have an important responsibility in this month. They have to ensure the children wake up for Prayers and sehri (The morning meal before fasting), and prepare healthy meals. The parents are also expected to carry out some charity work during this month.
Karim talks about the social media as a very big challenge to the families and youngsters nowadays. She believes the mothers need to limit their children's excessive occupation with social networks by keeping them busy with other work or maybe also to introduce them to a new hobby take them to the Mosque or Islamic centers.
About following the footsteps of Ahlul-Bayt (AS) in the education of the children, she says "Lead by example. Practice what you preach".
This writer continues the first thing is that we –as mothers- have to be their role models, we take as many lessons that we can from our pure and holy Ahlul-Bayt (AS) but we have to learn and implement them in our lives too. There are many lessons and examples from their lives one can take, but we have to implement them and not just learn a theoretical lesson.
Karim says books and visual aids are also very important for the younger children to make learning more fun and part of their lives and integrate education to normal life.
In regard to Ramadan she believes social interactions and tolerance is very important during this month. According to our noble leaders, Ahlul-Bayt (AS) the mothers need to follow these points in raising their children:
· Fear and love of Allah to keep the children away from haram as much as possible to remember Allah constantly and have faith in Him.
· Take lessons from the Holy Quran respect of women and their observing Hijab to respect all creations of Allah no matter where they come from or who they are.
· Being a Muslim comes with responsibilities and is a part and parcel of everyday life and not just some occasional practice.
· Lead by example to preserve pristine message of Ahlul-Bayt (AS) – to believe in the occultation and prepare for the Mahdi (atfs) to be up to date with current affairs and politics.
· Always to seek knowledge no matter what age we are to know and protect her rights and those around her to respect her husband and not ask for too much and have patience.
She ends this interview with a verse from Holy Quran:
"Indeed, the Muslim men and Muslim women, the believing men and believing women, the obedient men and obedient women, the truthful men and truthful women, the patient men and patient women, the humble men and humble women, the charitable men and charitable women, the fasting men and fasting women, the men who guard their private parts and the women who do so, and the men who remember Allah often and the women who do so - for them Allah has prepared forgiveness and a great reward." (surat33: 35)
Global Association of Moslem Women
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