By Absolute truth
How Prophet Muhammad Reprimanded Children
“Stop it, you nuisance!”
Is it not considered ‘normal’ in most societal circles today for
adults to address minor children in such a tone, and with derogatory
Parents, teachers, and other caregivers can lose their patience with
the naughty mischiefs of children very quickly, especially if these
children are extremely intelligent, curious, energetic, bold,
self-confident and spirited.
Children are a big blessing of God. Having children and raising them
righteously lays the foundation of a stable extended family structure.
Whilst most of us are well-aware of and regularly exhort the great
rights of parents in Islam, we tend to overlook the fact that little
children are also born with certain Islamic rights that we have
to fulfill as an obligation. Even the unseen, unheard fetus in the womb
has rights, which can delay the distribution of inheritance, as well as
affect the rulings regarding divorce in Islam.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) handled many situations
involving the antics and natural tendencies of infants and minor
children with exemplary patience and good-naturedness.
As God has commanded us in the Quran to emulate Prophet Muhammad as a
ticket to earning His ultimate pleasure with us in the Hereafter, we
should see how the Prophet corrected or reprimanded small children
whenever they did something that could, in the modern world, severely
test the patience and tolerance of most stressed-out, quick-to-snap
Tolerance for Infant Messes
Babies under the age of one are cuddly, chubby and adorable; bundles
of joy that everyone loves to hold, kiss, hug, coo over and carry
That is, until they do something smelly and leaky in their diaper.
As soon as that happens, the hitherto adoring adult (especially a
male one) who is holding them, immediately scrunches up their nose in
disgust and hands them over to the mother or nanny for cleanup.
However, this was not what the Prophet did in such a situation. He
would often take infants in his lap, even though in that era there were
no leak-proof diapers!
“A boy was brought to the Prophet to do tahnik for him, but the boy urinated on him, whereupon the Prophet had water poured on the place of urine.” (Al-Bukhari)
Prophet Muhammad refrained from expressing disgust or immediately
denying a newborn baby his lap even when the baby urinated on his
clothes! This indicates his exemplarily high level of tolerance for
babies’ natural phases, as it is normal for newborns to urinate often.
The lesson for us in this habit of Prophet Muhammad is to not get
irritated at the natural, physical messes that babies tend to make (such
as nose emissions, excreta, or regurgitated milk), even if the mess
gets on our clothes. We should also help clean up the mess without
considering it beneath our social dignity to do so.
Tolerating Natural Toddler Antics
Babies grow older to become active and energetic toddlers (known
nowadays as ‘preschoolers’), who love climbing on to the laps and backs
of adults and playing “rough house”.
It is well known that the Prophet not just allowed children in this age-range inside his masjid
during obligatory congregational prayers, but also patiently tolerated
their antics during prayers, even if these antics caused noise or
Reported by Abdullah ibn Shaddad from his father:
“The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) came out to lead us in either maghrib or ‘isha’ one night, and he was carrying Hassan or Husain. The Messenger of Allah came forward and put (the child) down, then he said takbir and started to pray. During the prayer, he prostrated and made his prostration long.
My father said: “I raised my head and I saw the child on the back of
the Messenger of Allah whilst he was prostrating, so I returned to my
When the Messenger of Allah finished praying, the people said:
“O Messenger of Allah, during your prayer you prostrated for so long
that we thought something had happened or that you were receiving
Nothing at all happened, but my son was riding on my back and I did not want to disturb him until he had had enough. (An-Nisa’i)
This hadith is another great example of how tolerant the
Prophet was regarding children’s naughtiness. Imagine a small child in
the age-range 2-4 (who can be carried easily) climbing on to the back of
a masjid’s imam during prostration nowadays. What do you think his reaction would be?
Yet, Prophet Muhammad lengthened his prostration just to let
the child continue his enjoyment and innocent play, hereby causing some
concern and undoubtedly a bit of chagrin to the worshippers praying
behind him in the congregation.
Using His Hands Gently to Reprimand
Children love physical displays of affection, and like being touched
in a positive manner. Instead of subjecting them to long monologues and
lectures to correct their mistakes, physically removing them from harm
is more effective.
Narrated Abu Hurairah:
“Dates used to be brought to Allah’s Messenger immediately after
being plucked. Different persons would bring their dates till a big heap
collected (in front of the Prophet). Once Al-Hassan and Al-Husain were
playing with these dates, one of them took a date and put it in his
mouth. Allah’s Messenger looked at him and took it out from his mouth
and said: “Don’t you know that Muhammad’s offspring do not eat what is
given in charity?” (Al-Bukhari)
The Prophet taking the date out of his grandson’s mouth himself
whilst giving him a short explanation of the reason, deployed the most
effective strategy of quickly resolving the situation. Which small child
would willingly spit a tasty, sweet date out from their mouth
Most parents today, however, keep shouting at a small child to not
touch an object or to stay away from a dangerous area, all the while
being ignored by the child. They then snap and give the child a harsh
scolding in front of everyone for not listening to them.
The lesson from this hadith about the correct thing to do in
such a situation is for an adult to get up quickly and physically
remove the small child from harm, warning them about the reason in brief
The hadith below also corroborates this strategy:
“Allah’s messenger was one of the best of men in character. One day,
he sent me to do something, and I said: “I swear by Allah that I will
not go”. But in my heart I felt that I should go to do what the Prophet
of Allah had commanded me. So I went out and came upon some boys who
were playing in the street. All of a sudden Allah’s Messenger, who had
come up behind, caught me by the back of the neck, and when I looked at
him, he was laughing. He said: “Go where I ordered you, little Anas”. I
replied: “Yes, I am going, messenger of Allah!” (Abu Dawud)
Prophet Muhammad used a combination of physical touch and gentle
reprimanding words to make little Anas realize his forgetfulness. The
Prophet knew that it is natural for a little boy to get distracted from
an errand by other children’s street games.
This hadith also indicates that when a child passes the
toddler stage, it is permissible to train them to do light, easy tasks
for adults, but to remember that it is normal for him or her to resist
immediate obedience and to get distracted by other children’s play.
Explaining Concisely for Correction
the Prophet would gently and concisely correct them and explain…
When a child becomes older i.e. beyond the age of 6-7, he or she
reaches the age of mentally understanding what is right and what is
wrong. When he encountered such a child doing something the wrong way,
the Prophet would gently and concisely correct them and explain to them
how to do it right, without scolding harshly or making them feel
humiliated in front of others.
Umar ibn Abu Salamah reported:
“I was a boy under the care of the Messenger of Allah, and as my hand used to wander around in the dish, he said to me once:
“Mention Allah’s Name (i.e., say Bismillah), eat with your right hand, and eat from what is in front of you.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
Little children have short attention spans, high energy levels, and
an extremely curious nature due to which they want to explore everything
in the world, most of which is still very new to them. However, we can
misinterpret their natural actions and reactions to situations in a
negative manner, unless we proactively practice patience with their
behavior without belittling, rebuking or reprimanding them harshly and
Because little children are a sacred trust from God, we should remind
ourselves not to be harsh with them. God is not even writing their
“sins” yet, even if they deliberately break a precious piece of
crockery, or touch anything in our cupboards or drawers that we have
kept strictly off limits.
As parents, if we lose patience with our children and treat them
wrong, we should immediately and sincerely repent for it before Allah.
Parents who do not regret nor repent for the wrongs they committed
towards their children when the latter were young, weak and dependent
upon them, end up being faced with resentful and aloof offspring in
their old age, because their little ones grew up with disturbing
childhood memories that morphed into a deep grudge over the years.
By regularly reading and studying the Prophet’s loving and mild
behavior with children, we can prevent ourselves from treating children
in a manner that could displease God and detriment our relationship with
them in the long term.
As-Salaamu Alaikum brothers and sisters,
I thought it may be beneficial to have a look at this video on YouTube as it gives hope to us all.
Please visit www.deenonline.co.uk for articles and more videos.
Jazak Allahu Khairan
POETRY: Why I Love The Prophet Muhammad (May Allah's Peace And Blessings Be Upon Him)
If you ask me, why do I love him, the
Prophet Muhammad (May Peace be upon him) -
I love him because he cared about us
Muslims, and loving him is a condition –
If you love Allah, then love the Prophet
Muhammad – Allah loved him very much.
He was Allah's Final Messenger, and
The hearts of many did his mercy touch.
His beautiful character makes me admire
Him – his trustworthiness and honesty –
Even before he became God's Prophet,
Disbelievers knew that he was trustworthy.
I love the Prophet Muhammad because
Of good manners he was the best example.
I love how he was patient throughout his life
And how his morals were never skeptical.
He cared about his nation too, thus he taught
Us what we should know about our religion.
When given the chance he'd always educate,
Blessing us with advice through his companions.
As a father and grandfather, the Prophet
Muhammad was kind and tender loving.
His mercy to the poor, widows and orphans –
His good treatment of them is too astounding.
His tolerance, even to non-Muslim
Neighbors, is also something to be admired.
His mercy too was further manifest
Through his kind treatment of the slaves he hired.
As a leader – he was charismatic,
As a warrior – marked with strength and bravery,
As a family man – full of mercy,
And a husband who treated his wives fairly –
As a friend – he was accommodating –
Full of cheer, he brought smiles to people's faces –
Respectful to the old, and kind towards the young –
Mercy was the Prophet Muhammad's basis.
I love how he was merciful – and because
Of his mercy, he always tried to guide.
I love how he struggled to obey Allah,
And how he remained patient all through his life.
I love how he was able to do so much –
So many good deeds, despite his simple life –
How he could survive on mere dates and water,
And yet stand for long hours when praying at night.
I love how he was so thankful to Allah –
How he was always ready to sacrifice.
I love how his character was dignified –
How he was strong and gentle at the same time.
I love the patience of Prophet Muhammad –
In worshipping Allah, in fasting, and praying –
His patience in helping Muslims, and in hard times,
And how he was merciful and forgiving.
Because of my love for Prophet Muhammad,
I try to follow him – and say "you should too" –
If you truly love Allah, then love Muhammad –
Let your following him make your love more true.
O' Allah, help us obey you, and help us
Follow Muhammad – in this world and to Heaven –
Grant us his companionship in Paradise,
And freedom to drink from his blessed fountain.
Written by Mariam Mababaya
POETRY: Some Advice In This Sonnet
A few words of advice in this sonnet:
Don’t hurt, if you too don’t like to be hurt.
When bad deeds return, you might regret it.
So watch your deeds, and take care of your words.
Always know that from above you’re being watched.
On your right and left are angels writing –
Collect whatever good deeds you may lack,
To please God and meet Him while He’s smiling.
Avoid supplications prayed against you,
Especially those of righteous Muslims.
Beware of everything you see and do –
Know that on Judgment Day, you’ll be questioned.
Obey Allah’s Rules, and good you shall get.
If you displease Allah, yours is regret.