Children in Paradise
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 477 :
Narrated by Al-Bara (bin Azib)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam), after the death of his son Ibrahim, said, “There is a wet-nurse for him (i.e. Ibrahim) in Paradise.”
Losing a child is one of the toughest things a parent can go through. Nothing in the whole wide world has the power to compensate for such a loss. And while grieving is a natural process, one can find solace in the glad tidings given to such parents in various narrations. For example:
It was narrated that Abu Hassaan said: I said to Abu Hurayrah: Two of my sons have died. Can you narrate to me any hadeeth from the Messenger of Allaah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) which will console us for our loss? He said: Yes: “Their little ones are the little ones (da’aamees) of Paradise. When one of them meets his father – or his parents – he takes hold of his garment – or his hand – as I am taking told of the hem of your garment, and he does not let go until Allaah admits him and his father to Paradise.” [Narrated by Muslim, 2635]
In another narration collected in Bukhari, we find out that those who die in childhood are entered into Paradise and are being looked after by Prophet Ibrahim (`alayhissalaam).
This was narrated in the hadeeth of Samurah ibn Jundub (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) often used to say to his companions: “Has anyone among you seen a dream?” and whoever Allaah willed would tell him what he had seen. One day he said: “Last night two people came to me and made me get up, and they said to me: ‘Let’s go.’ So I set off with them…” He mentioned things that he had seen, then he said:
“We set off, and we came to a verdant garden, in which were all the colours of spring, where there was a man who was so tall that I could hardly see his head in the sky. Around the man was the largest number of children I had ever seen…” Then among things that the two angels explained to him was: “As for the tall man who was in the garden, that was Ibraaheem. As for the children who were around him, these are all the children who died in a state of fitrah.” One of the Muslims said: “O Messenger of Allaah, what about the children of the mushrikeen?” He said: “And the children of the mushrikeen.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (7047).
Related: “Where is My Child?”
Reach for the Stars
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 478 :
Narrated by Abu Said Al-Khudri (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “The people of Paradise will look at the dwellers of the lofty mansions (i.e. a superior place in Paradise) in the same way as one looks at a brilliant star far away in the East or in the West on the horizon; all that is because of their superiority over one another (in rewards).” On that the people said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Are these lofty mansions for the prophets which nobody else can reach? The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) replied,” No! “By Allah in whose Hands my life is, these are for the men who believed in Allah and also believed in the Apostles.”
We all appreciate a good view of the stars from down here but one always fantasizes about being among them. At least I do. People talk about reaching for the stars as if it’s possible. Yes, that statement carries a lot of hope and motivation in it, but not everybody who tries succeeds.
In this world, some people might be born with silver spoons in their mouths, but nobody gets lucky in Jannah. You want it, you gotta work for it. Those unreachable lofty mansions won’t fill themselves. ;)
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 479 :
Narrated by Sahl bin Sad (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Paradise has eight gates, and one of them is called Ar-Raiyan through which none will enter but those who observe fasting.” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) also said, “If a person spends two different kinds of something (for Allah’s Cause), he will be called from the gates of Paradise.”
Hell on Earth
Just like Paradise, Hell has various levels which will be assigned to people according to the severity of their misdeeds. We already know a lot about Hell from the detailed accounts found in the Quran and Hadith. This sub-chapter of Book of Creation will cover some of them.
No one here has seen Hell so we start off with what we have seen, can relate to and are familiar with: Sun, fire, heat, burning, warmth, fever, pain, hunger, disgust, desperation, hopelessness etc.
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 480 :
Narrated by Abu Dhar (radiallaahu `anhu)
While the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) was on a journey, he said (regarding the performance of the Zuhr prayer), “Wait till it (i.e. the weather) gets cooler.” He said the same again till the shade of the hillocks extended. Then he said, “Delay the (Zuhr) Prayer till it gets cooler, for the severity of heat is from the increase in heat of Hell (fire).”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 481 :
Narrated by Abu Sad (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Delay the (Zuhr) Prayer till it gets cooler, for the severity of heat is from the increase in the heat of hell (fire).
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 482 :
Narrated by Abu Huraira
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “The (Hell) Fire complained to its Lord saying, ‘O my Lord! My different parts eat up each other.’ So, He allowed it to take two breaths, one in the winter and the other in summer, and this is the reason for the severe heat and the bitter cold you find (in weather).”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 483 :
Narrated by Abu Jamra Ad-Dabi
I used to sit with Ibn ‘Abbas (radiallaahu `anhu) in Mecca. Once I had a fever and he said (to me), “Cool your fever with Zam-zam water, for Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said: ‘It, (the Fever) is from the heat of the (Hell) Fire; so, cool it with water (or Zam-zam water).”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 484 :
Narrated by Rafi bin Khadij (radiallaahu `anhu)
I heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) saying, “Fever is from the heat of the (Hell) Fire; so cool it with water.”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 485 :
Narrated by Aisha (radiallaahu `anhaa)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Fever is from the heat of the (Hell) Fire, so cool it with water.”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 486 :
Narrated by Ibn ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Fever is from the heat of the (Hell) Fire; so abate fever with water.”
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 487 :
Narrated by Abu Huraira (radiallaahu `anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Your (ordinary) fire is one of 70 parts of the (Hell) Fire.” Someone asked, “O Allah’s Apostle This (ordinary) fire would have been sufficient (to torture the unbelievers),” Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “The (Hell) Fire has 69 parts more than the ordinary (worldly) fire, each part is as hot as this (worldly) fire.”
To say that Hell has a part to play in the ups and downs of weather on this Earth might seem illogical and far from science, but it’s what we believe in because it’s what we’ve been told in the Sacred texts. Hell is usually thought to be hot. Very hot. But it might come as a surprise to some people that it has cold areas as well, known as Zamhareer. Cold as in severe cold that burns, not cool and breezy where people get to take a break from constant heat and burning.
Question: why does it matter if summer happens when Hell-fire exhales and winter when it inhales, and why does it matter if fever is from the heat of Hell-fire? Yes, we believe it even if it goes against whatever Geography and Biology we have studied, but what does it matter? My point is, all these parables and examples are given so we can visualize the severity of punishment and find motivation to stop ourselves from disobeying Allah, and to seek refuge from it.
Volume 4, Book 54, Number 488 :
Narrated by Yali (radiallaahu `anhu)
That he heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) on the pulpit reciting: “They will cry: “O Malik!’ (43.77) (Malik is the gate-keeper (angel) of the (Hell) Fire.)
Hadith no. 2651 (below) is a repeat. Read it here.
Volume 4, Book 52, Number 255 :
Narrated by Abu Burda’s father
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Three persons will get their reward twice. (One is) a person who has a slave girl and he educates her properly and teaches her good manners properly (without violence) and then manumits and marries her. Such a person will get a double reward. (Another is) a believer from the people of the scriptures who has been a true believer and then he believes in the Prophet (Muhammad). Such a person will get a double reward. (The third is) a slave who observes Allah’s Rights and Obligations and is sincere to his master.”
Volume 4, Book 52, Number 256 :
Narrated by As-Sab bin Jaththama (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) passed by me at a place called Al-Abwa or Waddan, and was asked whether it was permissible to attack the pagan warriors at night with the probability of exposing their women and children to danger. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) replied, “They (i.e. women and children) are from them (i.e. pagans).” I also heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) saying, “The institution of Hima is invalid except for Allah and His Apostle.”
Volume 4, Book 52, Number 257 :
Narrated by ‘Abdullah (radiallaahu `anhu)
During some of the Ghazawat of the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) a woman was found killed. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) disapproved the killing of women and children.
Volume 4, Book 52, Number 258 :
Narrated by Ibn ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu)
During some of the Ghazawat of Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) a woman was found killed, so Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) forbade the killing of women and children.
Number 256 and the two narrations below it seem to be contradicting each other, but that’s not the case. The latter two describe the rule, and Number 256 is the exception.
Those who are not generally engaged in fighting – like women, children, the elderly, the handicapped, and others who do not participate in the fighting – are not to be killed. The only exception to this is where such people participate directly in the fighting or are so intermixed with the fighters that it is impossible to separate them from those who are fighting.
The hadîth in question actually shows us that the general rule is not to kill non-combatants, even when they are present on the battlefield. The only exception is when the non-combatants are so mixed in with the fighters that it is impossible to fight against the combatants without the possibility of some non-combatants inadvertently being killed. This is only out of dire necessity.
Ibn Hajar writes in his commentary on this hadîth in Fath al-Bârî (6/146):
His statement “They are of them” means that they are construed as such under those circumstances. It does not mean that it is permissible to deliberately target them.
It is a matter of agreement among scholars that a person’s unbelief is not reason for that person to be killed. There is considerable evidence for this. Aside from the Prophet’s prohibition of killing non-combatants, we have where Allah says: “Let there be no compulsion in religion.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 256]
One of the most well-known ways in which parents favour some of their children over others is with regard to giving, which is something that is forbidden according to the laws of Allah. Among the bad effects that result from this kind of favouritism is that it causes children to be disobedient towards their parents, so that they do not all treat their parents with the same level of respect and kindness. Our Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) drew attention to that and clearly stated that favouritism in giving is wrongdoing and unfair.
Volume 3, Book 47, Number 759:
Narrated An-Nu’man bin Bashir (radiallaahu `anhu):
that his father took him to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) and said, “I have given this son of mine a slave.” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) asked, “Have you given all your sons the like?” He replied in the negative. The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “Take back your gift then.”
Volume 3, Book 47, Number 760:
I heard An-Nu’man bin Bashir (radiallaahu `anhu) on the pulpit saying, “My father gave me a gift but ‘Amra bint Rawaha (my mother) said that she would not agree to it unless he made Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) as a witness to it. So, my father went to Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) and said, ‘I have given a gift to my son from ‘Amra bint Rawaha, but she ordered me to make you as a witness to it, O Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)!’ Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) asked, ‘Have you given (the like of it) to everyone of your sons?’ He replied in the negative. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, ‘Be afraid of Allah, and be just to your children.’ My father then returned and took back his gift.”
Just as Allah, may He be exalted, has forbidden this favouritism among children in giving, He has also forbidden something else, namely making a bequest to any one of them. He has forbidden making a bequest to an heir (one who automatically inherits according to sharee‘ah). All these rulings are in the best interests of the family and lay the foundations for family unity, not division.
Read more on this here.
Volume 3, Book 34, Number 304:
Narrated Khabbab (radiallaahu `anhu):
I was a blacksmith in the Pre-lslamic period, and ‘Asi bin Wail owed me some money, so I went to him to demand it. He said (to me), “I will not pay you unless you disbelieve Muhammad.” I said, “I will not disbelieve till Allah kills you and then you get resurrected.” He said, “Leave me till I die and get resurrected, then I will be given wealth and children and I will pay you your debt.” On that occasion it was revealed to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam):
‘Have you seen him who disbelieved in Our signs and says: Surely I will be given wealth and children? Has he known the unseen, or has he taken a covenant from the Beneficent (Allah)? (19.77-78)
Someone tell the disbelievers they won’t be getting any wealth or children after resurrection. Someone tell them!
Narrated Ar-Rubi’ bint Mu’awadh (radiallaahu `anhaa):
“The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) sent a messenger to the village of the Ansar in the morning of the day of ‘Ashura’ (10th of Muharram) to announce: ‘Whoever has eaten something should not eat but complete the fast, and whoever is observing the fast should complete it.’ “She further said, “Since then we used to fast on that day regularly and also make our boys fast. We used to make toys of wool for the boys and if anyone of them cried for, he was given those toys till it was the time of the breaking of the fast.”
Fasting is not obligatory for young children, until they reach the age of adolescence, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“The pens have been lifted from three: from one who has lost his mind until he comes back to his senses, from one who is sleeping until he wakes up, and from a child until he reaches the age of adolescence.”
Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4399; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.
Nevertheless, children should be told to fast so that they can get used to it, and because the good deeds that they do will be recorded for them.
The age at which parents should start to teach their children to fast is the age at which they are able to fast, which will vary according to each child’s physical makeup. Some scholars have defined this as being ten years of age.
Celebrate to Motivate
There is nothing wrong, in sha Allah, with the family celebrating the first time a boy or girl fasts, so long as it is limited to this occasion only, and will not become something that is repeated. There is nothing wrong with expressing happiness when the child reaches the age to observe this act of worship, or to encourage him and help him understand that this is an important event in his life. It is also a blessing for which thanks should be given to Allah. Some of the scholars regard it as mustahabb to make food for every happy occasion, and they specifically mentioned making food when a child completes the Qur’an.