A Midwestern Muslim
Hesham A. Hassaballa
After God, mothers are the most important force in all of our lives.
There was a time in my life when I thought Mother's Day to be a holiday of the "infidels," not worthy of celebration by a Muslim. Time and wisdom have taught me otherwise.
Mother's Day is an American cultural practice that is wholly consistent with Islam's principles.
The Qur'an places kindness to the parents on par with proper worship of God: "Worship and serve God, do not associate any partners with Him, and do good to your parents..."(4:36).
The textual juxtaposition of worshipping God and honoring the parents is not coincidental. Maltreatment of parents is one of the most deadly sins in all of Islam.
Furthermore, God implores believers to extend the hand of mercy to their parents:
"Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none but Him, and that ye be kind to parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in thy life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honour.
And, out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: 'My Lord! bestow on them thy Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood'" (17:23-24).
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