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  • Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

What is the value of a mother in Islam?

A mother solely bears the burden of her child for at least two years, hence there is a special regard given to a mother. She is the most respectable family member. According to a tradition: Abu Hurayra reported that a person came to God’s Messenger and said: ‘Who among the people is most deserving of a fine treatment from my hand?’ The Prophet replied: ‘Your mother.’ He again said: ‘Then who (is the next one)?’ He said: ‘Again, it is your mother (who deserves the best treatment from you).’ He said: ‘Then who (is the next one)?’ He (the Prophet) said: ‘Again, it is your mother.’ He (again) said: ‘Then who?” Thereupon the Prophet said: ‘Then it is your father.’ (Sahih Muslim, hadith no. 2548)

According to another tradition:

Abdullah ibn Amr said, ‘A man came to the Prophet, may God bless him and grant him peace, wanting to do jihad. The Prophet asked, ‘Are your parents alive? ‘Yes,’ he replied. The Prophet then said, ‘Then exert yourself on their behalf.’ Then your jihad would be with them’ (i.e., in looking after them and being at their service). (Sahih alBukhari, hadith no. 3004)

The Quran instructs us to be kind to our parents and pray for them and this is looked at as among the best of deeds:

We have enjoined on man kindness to his parents: his mother bore him, in pain and in pain she gave birth to him, and his bearing and weaning takes thirty months. At length, when he reaches the age of full maturity and attains forty years, he says, ‘O my Lord! Help me to be grateful for Your favours which You have bestowed upon me, and upon both my parents, and to do good deeds that will please You. Grant me righteousness in my offspring. Truly, I have turned to You and, truly, I submit to You.’ We accept from such people the best of what they do and We overlook their bad deeds. They will be among the people of Paradise—this is a true promise that has been given to them. (Quran 46:15-16)

The Quran also talks about how we should treat our parents:

Your Lord has commanded that you should worship none but Him and show kindness to your parents. If either or both of them attain old age with you, say no word of contempt to them and do not rebuke them, but always speak gently to them and treat them with humility and tenderness and say, ‘Lord, be merciful to them both, as they raised me up when I was little.’ (Quran 17:23-24)

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