Seminars ang Lectures- Australia- 3rd journey- Lesson (06-25): The commitments in the believer’s life- Domestic discipline: Parents’ behavior is a silent mission.
Last update:2013-07-06
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Praise be to Allah, the Lord of Creations, and Peace and blessings be upon our prophet Muhammad, the faithful and the honest.
 Oh, Allah, we know nothing but what You teach us. You are the All- Knower, the Wise. Oh Allah, teach us what is good for us, and benefit us from what You taught us, and increase our knowledge. Show us the righteous things as righteous and help us to do them, and show us the bad things as bad and help us to keep away from them.
  O Allah our Lord, lead us out from the depths of darkness and illusion, unto the lights of erudition and knowledge, and from the muddy shallows of lusts unto the heavens of Your Vicinity.


The Interviewer:

 Sayyidina Ali bin abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with him, said: "I swear twice by Allah that digging two wells with two needles, sweeping the land of Hijaz on a stormy day with two feathers, washing two black servants until they become white and moving two big rivers from their places with two sieves are easier for me than asking a bad man to pay back someone’s money."

 Sheikh, you said that during your visit to this country you’ve noticed that most of the people here are young and that they have more responsibilities than their parents. Can you give us some more comments on this issue?

Mankind works on safeguarding their existence, safety and fitness:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Sir, first of all, let me tell you –we do not love but ourselves. I assure you that all human beings, i.e. seven billion people, work on keeping themselves healthy, happy, alive and fit. Aren’t they? Who wants to be ill? Who wants to be poor? Who wants to be imprisoned? Definitely no one. You can, in fact, stay healthy, fit, rich and alive for, let us say, 130 years. All these things are possible by obeying Allah.

 You need food and drink; these two needs maintain your existence as an individual and you have to get married to preserve existence of the human race. Thus, by eating you keep yourself alive and by getting married you maintain your existence. You eat, drink, get married and have children; yet, you still have another essential need to satisfy, which is called in psychology self-assertion. You have a liking for fame and renown. This need can also be satisfied if we work according to the shari’a; all what you have to do is to obey Allah, and He will promote you.

"… And raised high the esteem (in which) you (are held)?"

[Surat Ash-Sharh: 4]

The ways to Allah are countless:

  Muslim scholars said that every ayah which addresses the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, addresses at the same time every believer, but this depends on how faithful and loyal the believer is. When Allah raised high the Prophet’s esteem, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, it means He elevated him high. If you are upright and apply the Prophet’s way, Allah will raise high your name.

 There are many gates that open up for us. I swear to Allah that there are as many ways to our Creator as there are people. For instance, a Muslim woman who stays at home, raises her five daughters according to the teachings of the Deen of Islam; makes them disciplined and chaste, marries them to good men, never talks on T.V or on the radio, never gives lectures will be in Heaven when she dies. Allah has made her behavior at home to be her way to Heaven. This is what I mean when I talk about the different ways to our Creator.

 The same thing can be applied to a doctor who has never blackmailed his patients or lied to them about their tests. It may happen that a doctor asks the patient to have twelve tests done, and at the same time he makes a deal with the laboratory nurse to carry out the first test only and cancel the others, and then shares with her the fee for the eleven tests. The relation between such a doctor and Allah Most High gets broken up.

Fearing Allah is the top of wisdom:

 I swear by Allah that there are many things that may make all your acts of worship go into the wastebasket. Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, said about someone: "Tell him that he has ruined his jihad with the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace."

 I have heard of many industrial abuses. All of you know tahinah (a substance added to some foods). Well, there is a product, used in painting, which, if added to tahinah, whitens it considerably and makes it possible for the price to be raised by ten pounds. However, this substance is cancerous. A manufacturer who uses it and prays in the first row will throw his prayers, zakat and hajj into the wastebasket. How can he make people suffer from cancer for ten pounds more? The Deen is not only praying; it has to do with your job, home, industry and every single movement of yours. Countless similar abuses are being constantly committed. For example, a man comes from Aleppo to obtain a certain document and the official tells him to come the following day to have it done. "The following day" for this man means spending another night in the hotel, i.e. paying one thousand pounds to obtain this document, which, in principle, should take no more than five minutes. Remember Allah is the Greatest.

 Diseases, such as cancer and cirrhosis, are in the Hand of Allah. I was once asked to go to the Security Department; this is a kind of routine. I mentioned to the captain there that cancer, cirrhosis and renal failure are in Allah's Hand. I told him about illnesses that can destroy mountains and that, "All of us are Allah’s servants, so I hope that nobody will get hurt by you." A few days later he told me, "There was a prisoner in the basement who had a heart attack and I personally took him to the hospital because I was afraid of what you told me last time."

 Allah is the Greatest. Fearing Allah is what our Deen is all about and it is the height of wisdom. Do not hurt anyone whether in your own interest, or in the interest of industry or trade. There is indeed much abuse in industry. Some people add ingredients which are beyond their expiry date for a few pounds. The expiry date of a medicine which costs 2000 pounds has been deleted and may be purchased by a child, totally unaware of it. The money obtained for it is haram. The Deen does not exist only in the masjid. This place is to receive the instructions of our Creator and apply them in one's daily life. The Deen is when you give the buyer his money back. When and where should the Deen be applied? It should be applied all day, at work, in business deals, at home, with one's wife and children. When the Deen becomes no more than ritual worship, it loses its meaning and its content.

This Deen is both individual and collective:

 It will not be an exaggeration to say that we have five ritual acts of worship and about one hundred thousand clauses concerning behavior. They are related to how you sell, make profit or add certain ingredients to a product. There are substances that cause cancer; other substances are radioactive and some have expired. An ingredient which costs five thousand pounds a kilo is needed to make bread. On the other hand, there is a chemical substance which looks exactly like it and has the same effect, so it is added to bread for it costs ten pounds a kilo only, but it causes cancer. Is this the Deen? The Deen means total commitment to the Islamic teachings. It is when you call yourself to account for each word you utter, for each penny you are paid and for each position you take. Only then you are a religious man. Let me pose a question although it may seem embarrassing:

"Twelve thousand cannot be defeated because of being few."

[Reported by Abu Dawood and Tirmidhi on the authority of Abdullah bin Abbas[

 Have you noticed that? Twelve thousand cannot be defeated, how about eight hundred million? They do not have the upper hand nor do they have their say. Moreover, the other party is plotting against them, so they are weak. This is the case with some countries that are located in the most strategic place in the Middle East and have numberless resources. For example, in Iraq extraction of oil costs four dollars (a barrel) because the wells are the shallowest there, whereas in other countries it costs fifty dollars. The Arab world is rich in oil, phosphate and minerals. Wherever you go there is affluence, strategic location, the same language and the same history. Nevertheless, Arabs are backward.

 The annual profit of Toyota Company is equal to the GNP in Egypt. The population in Egypt is seventy million. It has agriculture, industry and trade, the returns of which are all included in the GNP. The profit of Toyota alone is equal to the GNP of this country. O Allah! We seek guidance from You. Let me be honest with you, this Deen is great, because it is both collective and individual. If you apply it, you will be paid back; and if the whole country applies it, it will be successful. You just have to do your duty towards it; apply it to your home, yourself and your job. Of course you can do that.

The interviewer:

 As you know, Sheikh, strife of all kinds is widely spread nowadays. Sometimes we think that everything is normal and that there is no problem at all. Yet, we soon discover that we are trapped in a big trouble. Can you comment on some of the problems that we face today?

This Deen is uprightness:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Let me first ask you –how many kinds of trade are there? There are hundreds of thousands. Can you describe them in one word? Yes, you can; this word is "profit". If you cannot make money out of your trade, then you are not a trader. There are countless kinds of trades; big and small. You may have a company or be a partner in a company. You may make deals with companies in your country or abroad. If you deal in lands, houses or food, and you cannot make money, you can never be a successful trader.

 Similarly, the Deen can be summarized in one word: uprightness. If you are not righteous, you will not get anything from your Deen. The Deen will be a kind of folklore and traditions. There are hundreds of names for the Deen; this person has a religious background, the other one has a religious basis, that one has religious interests and someone has a religious test, and so on. I can give you many terms, but we cannot call these terms the Deen of Islam. Islam is uprightness. If you do not apply the Way of Allah, you will never benefit from your Deen.

 For example, if someone has a car part, can he sell it? Well, yes, although it is not a car, he can sell it as a spare part. The car has to have many things such as the engine, the brakes, gasoline, and so on. Thus, many elements are necessary for a car to look like one. The Deen, similarly, should contain uprightness. When you keep going according to the Way of Allah, you will not be deprived.

All Allah's Orders have a scientific relationship with their results:

 Let me tell you something which is particularly accurate: every desire that Allah has created in mankind can be satisfied according to the Path of Islam. Man's desires are what gasoline is for a car: it is poured into a container provided with tubes that supply the engine with the necessary petrol and make the car run. However, if you just pour gasoline over the car and set fire to it, your car will be burnt all at once. The power of desire can be either destructive or constructive. Allah wants it to be constructive; He creates it inside mankind with the objective of elevating man through it and reaching the Lord of earth and heaven. Someone may be invited to a party together with other men and women. He sees a woman who is more beautiful than his wife, so he starts to lament his having married the woman who is his wife and ends up calling himself blind for having chosen her to be his spouse. He may be nervous for a month or so because of the other beautiful woman he has seen at that party. Therefore, it is not allowed for you to go to such parties; sitting with other women is something dangerous. The minute we stop applying our Deen, we will have problems with Allah Most High.

 Let me give you the following example now: a father whose home has two entrance doors wants one of the doors to be for the guests and the other one for his family. What he does is something arbitrary, so if one of his sons uses the guests' door, he violates the rule set by the father. However, if a son puts his hand in the fireplace and gets burnt, this is scientific. The relationship between the action (putting the hand in the fireplace) and getting burnt (the result) is a scientific one. Let me assure you that the relationship between Allah’s Orders and Prohibitions and their results is a scientific one. Allah Most High is the Most Expert One. If you are honest, all people will love you and you will be elevated. On other hand, if you are dishonest, no one will love you and you will be degraded.

Uprightness is engraved in fitrah:

 When you understand the Deen and its scientific relations, you will apply it correctly. This is the answer to your first question. As for uprightness, we know it through fitrah, the ayah says:

"So set you (O Muhammad ) your face towards the religion of pure Islamic Monotheism Hanifa (worship none but Allah Alone) Allah's Fitrah (i.e. Allah's Islamic Monotheism), with which He has created mankind."

[Surat Ar-Rum: 30]

 You are programmed according to the Way of Allah, much in the same way as the car is programmed to run on a paved way, where it runs quietly and quickly; but you will not feel comfortable if you drive it on a rocky country road. Similarly, you will not feel comfortable if you do not apply the Deen; once you apply it, you will be pleased, why? Because then you will be reconciled with your tawheed. As I told you at the beginning –if you do not love anyone, just love yourself; I mean for the time being. Love yourself and keep yourself safe and happy.

The interviewer:

 Sheikh, the committed person finds himself to be an outcast even in the eye of the people closest to him. How can he change this situation if he is not wise enough? As you know not all people are wise, we may not be so, for that matter. How can we face the people who are closest to us? I mean, how can a person working on being committed face the people around him?

Wisdom is a must in uprightness:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Look, sir, what I mentioned is very clear. If you want to be upright, you will be given wisdom, insha Allah:

"… to whom Hikmah is granted."

[Surat Al-Baqarah: 269]

 First of all, wisdom is granted and can never be taken away. If it could be taken away, the Deen would be nonsense. Someone can be very intelligent; yet, he may make mistakes because he is not wise.

 I can tell you that wisdom is the most precious Divine gift to the believer. Allah’s Wisdom can be recognized when He inspires you to be right, wise and honest. When you are close to Allah, you will be granted the wisdom and truth. Sometimes, kind words solve the problem with the mother and sometimes harsh words create a problem. O Allah! May You guide us to the right way:

"… and speak to them words of kindness and justice."

[Surat An-Nis’a: 5]

Wisdom is the greatest Divine gift granted to the believer:

 Wisdom is a Divine gift. Those who do not have wisdom destroy themselves, be it collectively or individually. Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, has warned us:

"Do not obey the creature if his orders are against the Way of Allah."

[Reported by Al-Bazzar on the authority of Abdullah bin Amr bin Al-Ass[

 Sayyidina Sa’d’s mother told him: "If you believe in Muhammad, I will stop eating until I die." Listen to what he said, "If you had one hundred lives, I would still believe in Muhammad. It is up to you whether you eat or not."

 This is one position. You cannot prefer anything else to your Deen; you cannot make a party and invite both men and women to it because your mother wants you to do that, or because she will get upset if you do not throw such a party. She should not get angry if you do not listen to her because inviting men and women to a social meeting is something extremely dangerous in our lives.

The interviewer:

 This is exactly the biggest problem the young people have when they intend to be committed to the teachings of Islam. They tell their parents that mixing is prohibited in Islam and here the problems start.

Avoid mixed companies:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 This is the Deen, no matter what happens. There is the Hereafter, so one should keep committed in order to please Allah. I swear by Allah that I have never met my brothers’ wives or my wife’s sisters. My wife has five sisters, but I have never met them. Mixed company is extremely dangerous and so are its consequences.

 The other day I was checking the BBC website looking for articles about sexual abuse. I have read hundreds articles about this matter and have found that most of the visitors talked about this subject referring to the fact that sexual abuse generally happened between relatives and during journeys, because of mixing which is prohibited. Thus, if your mother tells you that she would like to have a party and invite men and women, otherwise she will get angry, tell her, "Excuse me, Mum, no way."

The interviewer:

 Even if she says that she will get angry?

Dr. Nabulsi:

 She should not get angry. It was Sayyidina Sa’d, not I, who said, "If you had one hundred lives, I would still believe in Muhammad. It is up to you whether you eat or not."

 I could tell you many stories about divorces caused by mixing. I know of two families who went once to the beach. When they came back home, the husband became nervous and harsh with his wife and his seven children. He fell in love with his friend’s wife, so he divorced his wife and married that woman who had five children. This is the result of mixing.
 Listen please to this joke: A man went once to a club and saw a half-naked woman there. He said, "I seek refuge in Allah." Then he saw a second one and again said, "I seek refuge in Allah." After that he looked at a third one and said, "I seek refuge in Allah." He looked at a forth one and repeat the same phrase. Then someone said to him, "If you refer to the Deen, why have you come here in the first place?"
If your son is not what you have wanted him to be, you are a loser:

 I attended the Almaya Conference in Los Angles with my friends. There were twelve of us, including al- Qrazawi and Muhammad Hassan. Al- Qrazawi said, "If you are not sure that your grandson will be a true Muslim, you should not stay in this country." I came back to Damascus and attended a conference attended by one hundred doctors who live in the U.S.A. One of them invited me to his daughter’s engagement, and there I told him what al-Qrazawi said. He started to cry, saying, "My grandson?!" I replied, "Yes." He said, "My son-in-law is a Christian. I have no idea what my grandson will be."

 You should be patient. I don't pretend that there is no corruption in Damascus, but you should look after your children. I delivered a speech when Clinton was the president. I said, "If you were given the presidency of Clinton, the fortune of Onasis and the science of Einstein, you would be a loser as long as your son is not what you would like him to be." I challenge anyone who dares say that he feels happy, knowing that his son is away from the Way of Allah. I am asking you to look after your children not to get back to Damascus. What is the point of your being in Syria when you fail to look after your offspring? If your children are committed, you will be the happiest person.

The interviewer:

 Some people say that there is no difference between raising your children in your country or abroad. Admittedly, at a certain age the children will not listen to their parents’ advice.

If you do something, you should bear its consequences:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Sir, I have some friends who live in America. They refuse to send their sons or daughters to Damascus. They say, "Go on your own." It is said that if you want to do something, you should think about its consequences. Some of those people who live in America forget their origins. I know a person who lives in a mansion with a twenty-meter-high ceiling, a big swimming pool filled with warm water, yet he was crying because he had lost his son. I have been to most western countries and I have noticed that the major problem of the Muslims there is their children. This does not mean that you will never be able to raise them according to the Islamic teachings, but to do so you will need to make a double effort when abroad.

 The science which we used to study was a descriptive one. What does that mean? It means that everybody can hear the noise of a plane, but nowadays there is a device that can tell us that the noise of a landing plane is 125 D.B. Even the fat in milk can be rated to let us know whether it is whole milk or not, for example we say the fat rate is 28%.

 Let us say that raising your children can be rated. Thus, you will need one thousand units to raise your children in Syria, whereas you will need a million units when you do it abroad. One day, while I was in the yard of the masjed, someone told me that he wanted to live in America, so he would like to know my opinion. I said, "Someone wanted to drink a cup of water; he drank it and came back. What did he do?" he replied, "Nothing." I said, "I swear by Allah that adultery in America is similar to drinking water." Even if the girls are virgin there, they are mentally disordered.

 While in Australia, I was once invited by a friend of mine for a walk in a park. I sat with him, and my wife sat with his wife. She told her, "Today is Sunday; there is group sex under that tree over there." This is perversion.

 I am just asking you to look after your children without giving you details. I am giving you a piece of advice, and I think it is a precious one.

The interviewer:

 What do you think about those who stay in the Levant? It is said that they will be rewarded just like the mujahedin.

Our balance must be between the worldly life and the Hereafter:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Yes, those people will be rewarded just like the mujahedin. Why? Because life abroad is more comfortable. I know that whatever you want can be found in the U.S.A; it is an earthly heaven in this respect; and it is full of forests, greens and lakes. If you go shopping, you find everything you need. This is incredible.

 I was once on a visit there and upon my arrival was asked, "How do you find it?" I answered, "Everything is comfortable, whereas in our country there are many uncomfortable things." This is the difference. However, in the Middle East there are many advantages: the general atmosphere is almost Islamic, the traditions, the meetings and the religious lessons. All these things suit you… your sister, your aunt and your cousin, and so on. I know this country and I know it is better than our country in so many ways, but we must not lose the Hereafter. Do not make a comparison between the U.S.A and Syria. You should make a comparison between the worldly life and the Hereafter instead.

 I do not want to give the impression that you bear the whole responsibility.

The interviewer:

 I would like to tell you, Sheikh, that Shaytan deceives people when he makes them think that sending their children to Islamic schools is enough. Parents do not know that although their children are taught how to pray and to read the Qur’an in Arabic, they will not graduate as true Muslims. Suffice it to say that those children are allowed to watch T.V shows which are brainwashing. What should we do in this case? We go to the masjid and listen to khutbah there. We are told that we should look after our children. Parents think that the Islamic school is sufficient, but they do not realize that there is not enough awareness and sometimes they do not call their children's attention to the mistakes they make.

Dr. Nabulsi:

 I do not want to say harsh words to you, but it is your own responsibility to raise your children and look after them. None will be able to take your place when you stand in front of Allah whatever your country, school and everything else. I tell you:

"The best thing you earn in life is your child."

[Reported by al-Tabrani on the authority of Abi Burdeh bin Niyar]

 Please notice the expression "the best", which is a superlative adjective. Your son is a continuation of yourself. The good deeds of your son and your grandson will the best things on the credit side in your Book when you stand in front of Allah on the Day of Resurrection. The ayah says,

"And those who believe and whose offspring follow them in Faith, to them shall We join their offspring."

[Surat At-Tur: 21]

 Scholars of tafseer said, "They were followed by their children’s deeds." Your children’s deeds will be written down in your Book on the Day of Resurrection. That is why I keep saying that the success and the best trade before Allah lie in the way you raise your children. I am not telling you what you should do; I am just giving you a piece of advice because I do care about how you raise your children so that they are true Muslims.

 In Detroit I met a clever young man who had memorized the Qur'an and worked as the Imam of the masjid. I asked someone to tell me about him, and was told, "His father used to take him to Damascus once a year to learn the Arabic language from the scholars." You see, one has to exert oneself.

 Allah helps every father who looks after his children. This is the Gift of Allah as long as this father obeys Him. Of course, there are some fathers who do not care about their children, but if you do care, Allah will guide you to the right Way.

 I swear by Allah that ninety percent of the discipline is done by your being good. You may not need to say a single word to your children, but it may be enough if you are honest, patient, well disciplined, religious and you do not lie, look at something prohibited or do something prohibited. In this case you raise your children without uttering a word. Let me elaborate on it a little more. A child sees that her mother visits her neighbor and stays there for five hours. When her husband comes back home and asks her, "I’ve called you and got no answer. Where have you been?" She replies, "I have been at home." She is lying to her husband in front of her daughter who knows the truth.

 A relative of mine who lives in the U.S.A visited me once in Syria. His son was noisy, so my aunt told him, "If you stop making noise sweetie, I will take you to the garden in the afternoon." He kept silent until the afternoon. My aunt, however, forgot about her promise, so he told her, "You are a liar." He was right. You should be careful and watch your behavior.

 The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, heard a woman telling her child, "Come here and take this." He asked her, "What did you want to give him?" She replied, "A date." He told her, "If you had not given it to him, you would have been lying."

The interviewer:

 The parents are in the habit of telling their children "if you do that, we will do this and we will do that", which means that they will get used to listening to their parents’ lies. Thus, they will never pay attention to them anymore.
As for T.V series –I mean the Arabic series in general and the famous Syrian ones in particular. Many people watch them, even those who are committed. Are they allowed to do so?

The wrong values are the most dangerous thing in any series:

Dr. Nabulsi:

 I am a graduate in psychology, and I know that many series contain kisses and sometimes sex scenes. These scenes are not as dangerous as the scenes that represent values, which can be absorbed unconsciously by the spectators. For example, you keep telling your son that he should not drive fast. You repeat it thousands of times, yet he does not obey you. However, if he watches an accident on T.V and sees that all the passengers got killed in a car accident, he will stop driving fast. This scene on T.V is more effective than the father’s advice. You should learn how to advise your son; do not keep saying "do not do this and do not do that" because he will get fed up. Tell him why you are ordering him to do this and not to do that. Allah Most High says,

"Take Sadaqah (alms) from their wealth in order to purify them and sanctify them with it,"

[Surat At-Taubah: 103]

 Allah is giving us the reason. His Orders are justified. Tell your son that he should wash his teeth to protect them from decay. Allah explains why we should obey His Orders, so why can't you explain the reasons to your son? You should give enough of your time to your children, because if you do not, you will regret it later. You may forget the milk of human kindness when your son comes back home very late, shouts at you and sometimes even hits you. You will have to pay a very high price.

The interviewer:

 What are the values demonstrated in these series?

Dr. Nabulsi:

 For example, there is mixing and you can see a woman sitting alone with her brother-in-law. It is not a problem for her, even if her husband is not at home. These values may get instilled into one.

The interviewer:

 Sheikh, some of the series are committed to values, though.

Dr. Nabulsi:

 There are many bad habits. I am not biased on account of being Damascene. The population of Damascus is six million people, but not all of them are Damascene. The Damascene people are one million only, so do not say I am Damascene.

Whoever seeks help from Allah is not a loser:

 I wish that all people should ask Allah to help them. Allah will answer your du’a at night prayer if you ask Him to help you raise your children. Allah is waiting for you to ask Him,

"Allah Most High waits until the end of the first third of the night to descend to the nearest heaven and say, "Is there anyone who wants to be forgiven? Is there anyone who wants to repent? Is there anyone who wants to ask Me?" He keeps waiting until Salah al-Fajr."

[Reported by Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawood, al- Trmithi and Malik on the authority Abi Huraira]

 Allah is waiting for us to ask Him for help when we are in trouble.

The interviewer:

 What if a man wants to get married?

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Allah never lets you down if you ask Him to help you do something halal.

The interviewer:

 I know a popular saying which goes, "Allah makes marriage easier for you." A young man who works with me in the shop told me that he wanted to get married although he did not have enough money. I said: "Seek aid from Allah." He talked to the parents of the girl and they accepted him. They got engaged and were married. Allah sent him good people to help him. He told me, "I am married. I wonder how I got there in eight months only!"

Dr. Nabulsi:

 Keep in touch with Allah. Allah is with you and He hears you when you say, "O Allah! I seek aid and guidance from You. O Allah! I seek Your aid to find a good woman for me to marry and to raise my children." When you ask, ask Allah, for He does exist.

Translation  : Kawthar Al- Haj Saleh
Edited by      : Najat Rozko