I’M a bad boy…. yeah maan! Trousers hanging low, afros as they were back in the 60s, the latest shades, fast cars and ready cash. No, I am not describing a scene in one of the ghettos in America, but rather, this phenomenon is right here in Saudi Arabia.
If you were to go to Tahlia Street in Jeddah or Sultana in Madina, you will find the youth somewhat in disarray. Are they searching for their inner selves or are they lost in the realms of society and do not know where they are going? Whatever the reason, our youth seem to be sick and tired of having nothing to do and feel that this is the way to ‘be cool’, so to say.
The problem starts with us, the parents. What role model are we setting for our children? Do they see us busy seeking Islamic knowledge or doing something beneficial? Are we implementing what the prophet left us with and do we actually spend real quality time talking with our sons and daughters?
Ask yourself when was the last time you washed the car with your son? When was the last time you played football with him in the park? Our society has become dependent on others to do our work for us? We cannot even take the rubbish out to the dustbin! Till when will we say, “Tomorrow son. I am so tired now and you better go to bed.” By all this, you are pushing your children away from you.
Involve your children in what you do. For example, take your son or daughter with you when you go out and meet people, so he can build the social skills needed to be an important and influential member of the society. Cook dinner together. Involve your child in discussions. All this will build his or her character and in turn, the child will grow and mature into the type of Muslim youth we need.
Fathers and mothers should be examples for our children. We are the first source from where they derive their opinions and principles. We should teach them about Allah Who knows and sees everything and make them realize that no one can truly help us except Allah. Fear of Allah and reliance on Him will keep them steadfast in times of temptation and trouble. Take your children to Islamic lectures at the mosque or Islamic center. Seeking Islamic knowledge is a must on every Muslim.
Cool or Fool?
The youth face this tremendous problem today. They have this complex that if they don’t look ‘cool’ they will look like a ‘fool’. Will a young teenager go to meet his friend wearing a beard and lower garments above the ankles? But that is how the Prophet lived! What if one refuses to smoke or listen to music and doesn’t go behind girls? But these are the teachings of the Prophet (peace be upon him), so why this complex?
Unfortunately, our youth have messed up role models and peers. They look up to pop stars as ideal beings, when they are in reality the total opposite who have reached heights of immorality and indecency. World’s most famous rock stars who had “everything” that materialistic people yearn for, committed suicides.
The present ones are no different, with messed up lives, drug addictions and depression. They may have “everything” but they don’t have Imaan (faith).
They chase and follow lusts and desires, which are only like a mirage that promises joy that doesn’t exist. The achievement is zero, but the craving only increases more and more producing a maniacal of a person. Is this how we want our children to grow up as? The real sweetness and joy can only be experienced when Imaan fills up the heart and the body is used in the worship of the Creator. Make the Prophet (peace be upon him) the role model. You, as parents, set the example of taking the Prophet (peace be upon him) as the role model in your lives.
Islam is a beautiful way of life. Tell them that success in this world and the hereafter lies in Islam. This will bring out youth who are beneficial to the society. Instead of spending hours in front music channels, they will read and understand the Qur’an, involve in community service and devise new ways of social contribution.
Tell your children to choose good friends and to avoid bad company no matter how glamorous and attractive it looks. With sincere and dedicated effort, we may Insha Allah be able to change the present scenario for the better and bring up a generation of leaders. Remember, the children are an Amaanah (trust) that we will be questioned about on the Day of Judgment. – SG