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Learning from Children and Babies

Learning from Children and BabiesWe can learn so much from children. And most of us have the good fortune to get to be closely reacquainted with the magic of childhood twenty or thirty years after we were children. If our children then have children, we get another lesson some years further down the track.

It would seem that many parents see the teaching process as a one way street. Parents can also do well to spend more time learning from their children and less time teaching.

Children know a lot more about having a good time than most adults. Children know how to laugh. They don't need much to laugh at. Sometimes they don't need anything at all. They laugh because it feels good. Did you get your quota of laughs today?

They are delightfully spontaneous. Children don't analyse and work everything out. They are just busy "being". Whatever we meet grown ups who are so spontaneous, we tend to treasure them also. Let's do less thinking and more responding.

Children are eternally fascinated. They are curious. Everything is a new exciting experience, to be absorbed. Adults switched off. Many of us have forgotten what a magic place this planet is.

Children are also very accepting. They are without prejudice. Rich or poor or black or white, you are OK. A child is not your religion or your politics.

Kids have enormous resilience and determination. If they want, they don't quit. Their persistence is really something to be admired, as well as endured. Children just keep going for it. When you learned to walk, you kept at it and kept at it. You fall over and got up. Finally you learned to walk! Do you still exhibit that kind of determination?

In a nutshell - Spend time with children. Learn more about laughter, spontaneity, curiosity, acceptance, resilience, trust, determination, and your imagination. They are here to teach us!

Learning from Infants and little Angels

"He that seeks guidance, shall be guided to his own advantage, but he that goes astray does so to his own loss. No bearer shall bear the burden of another on the Day of Judgment. And during your worldly life, We do not inflict punishment until We send forth a Messenger to make truth distinct from falsehood." Noble Qur'an (17:15)

Learning from Infants and little AngelsProphet Muhammad (pbuh) said, "No babe is born but upon Fitra (as a Muslim). It is his parents who make him a Jew or a Christian or a Polytheist."

When a child is born; regardless of whether it is a female or a male, white or black or red, American or African or Chinese or Indian or Arab, regardless of whether he/she is rich or poor, son/daughter of a president or of a Shepherd, or whatever the case is; every child is born with such a high NOBLE characters!

Everyone of us has experienced the Noble characters, like the characters of the Saints! But what are some of those characters and what has turned us away from such a high profile?

When we study some main characteristics of the infants, we find their similarities in the Noble people (Saints). If we try to implement such qualities, we should be able to return to our original state. Some of those qualities, we find, are:

  • Closeness to their Nature - They like Milk, not alcohol!
  • Consciousness of Allah (SWT) - Being in the womb was perhaps among the best times we ever had. A child is so much in conscious of Allah that when he/she come into this world, child starts to cry! "...Beware! It is the remembrance of Allah which provides tranquility to the hearts." Noble Qur'an (13:28)
  • Pure hearts - Sinless hearts are pure hearts. When we repent and do good actions, Allah (SWT) erases our sins and makes our heart bright.
  • Seclusion (being alone) - Babies in the wombs are alone, away from this material world and its thoughts. A person who remembers Allah (SWT) in seclusion and his eyes get flooded with tears will be under the shade of Allah, on the day of Qayyamah. We should try to spend some time with our Lord, especially at nights when no one is near us, and remember and thank Him for His favours and ask forgiveness for our sins.
  • Meditation - I believe, babies do meditate, if they don't, how else would they learn this world? Let you observe how they meditate...
  • Observes Silence - They speak as much as it is necessary to speak (babies cry when they need to cry, perhaps not always :)
  • No Anger in them - I don't know if any infant child knows what 'anger' is like.
  • No Worries - "Be aware! The friend of Allah (SWT) has nothing to fear or to regret." Noble Qur'an (10:62) Food is predestined! If Allah is with the believers, why worry then? Smile

Above mentioned are some qualities (there could be more) that we can find in infants, as well as, in an actual Muslim (the Prophets are our role-model). If we implement these qualities, Insha Allah, we will be able to easily and fully follow our Deen: Al-Islam (with its requirements); since if the roots are getting enough nutrition's, the plant grows easily, quickly and properly!

Learning from Children: Life is a Golden Gift

Learning from Children: Life is a Golden GiftI was sitting on a beach one summer day, watching two children, a boy and a girl, playing in the sand. They were hard at work building an elaborate sandcastle by the water's edge with gates and towers and moats and internal passages. Just when they had nearly finished their project, a big wave came along and knocked it down, reducing it to a heap of wet sand.

I expected the children to burst into tears, devastated by what had happened to all their hard work. But they surprised me. Instead, they ran up the shore away from the water, laughing and holding hands, and sat down to build another castle.

I realized that they had taught me an important lesson. All the things in our lives, all the complicated structures we spend so much time and energy creating, are built on sand.

Only our relationships to other people endure. Sooner or later, the wave will come along and knock down what we have worked so hard to build up. When that happens, only the person who has somebody's hand to hold will be able to laugh.

Learning from little Angels: Power of Holding Hands

Learning from little Angels: Power of Holding HandsA little girl and her father were crossing a bridge. The father was kind of scared so he asked his little daughter, "Sweetheart, please hold my hand so that you don't fall into the river." The little girl said, "No, Dad. You hold my hand." "What's the difference?" Asked the puzzled father...

"There's a big difference," replied the little girl. "If I hold your hand and something happens to me, chances are that I may let your hand go. But if you hold my hand, I know for sure that no matter what happens, you will never let my hand go."

In any relationship, the essence of trust is not in its bind, but in its bond.

So hold the hand of the person whom you love rather than expecting them to hold yours.

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has said: "Whoever has a child should be like a child with him."

Learning From Children: How Selfless is Real Love?

My wife called, 'How long will you be poring over that newspaper? Will you come here and make your darling daughter eat her food?'

I tossed newspaper away and rushed to the scene. My only daughter Sindu looked frightened. Tears were welling up in her eyes. In front of her was a bowl filled to its brim with Curd Rice. Sindu is a nice child, quite intelligent for her age. She has just turned eight. She particularly detested Curd Rice. My mother and my wife are orthodox, and believe firmly in the 'cooling effects' of Curd Rice!

I cleared my throat, and picked up the bowl. Sindu, darling, why don't you take a few mouthfuls of this Curd Rice? Just for Dad's sake, dear. And, if you don't, your Mom will shout at me.

I could sense my wife's scowl behind my back. Sindu softened a bit, and wiped her tears with the back of her hands.

OK, Dad. I will eat - not just a few mouthfuls, but the whole lot of this. But, you should... Sindu hesitated. Dad, if I eat this entire curd Rice, will you give me whatever I ask for?

How Selfless is Real Love?Oh sure, darling.

Promise?

Promise

I covered the pink soft hand extended by my daughter with mine, and clinched the deal. Ask Mom also to give a similar promise, my daughter insisted. My wife slapped her hand on Sindu's, muttering Promise, without any emotion.

Now I became a bit anxious. Sindu dear, you shouldn't insist on getting a computer or any such expensive items. Dad does not have that kind of money right now. OK?

No, Dad. I do not want anything expensive.

Slowly and painfully, she finished eating the whole quantity.

I was silently angry with my wife and my mother for forcing my child to eat something that she detested. After the ordeal was through, Sindu came to me with her eyes wide with expectation. All our attention was on her.

Dad, I want to have my head shaved off, this Sunday! Was her demand

'Atrocious!' shouted my wife, a girl child having her head shaved off? Impossible!

Never in our family! My mother rasped. She has been watching too much of television. Our culture is getting totally spoiled with these TV programs!

Sindu darling, why don't you ask for something else? We will be sad seeing you with a clean-shaven head. No, Dad. I do not want anything else, Sindu said with finality.

Please, Sindu, why don't you try to understand our feelings? I tried to plead with her.

Dad, you saw how difficult it was for me to eat that Curd Rice. Sindu was in tears.

And you promised to grant me whatever I ask for. Now, you are going back on your words. Was it not you who told me the story of King Harishchandra, and its moral that we should honor our promises no matter what?

It was time for me to call the shots. Our promise must be kept.

Are you out your mind? Chorused my mother and wife

No. If we go back on our promises, she will never learn to honor her own. Sindu, your wish will be fulfilled.

With her head clean-shaven, Sindu had a round-face, and her eyes looked big and beautiful.

On Monday morning, I dropped her at her school. It was a sight to watch my hairless Sindu walking towards her classroom. She turned around and waved. I waved back with a smile.

Just then, a boy alighted from a car, and shouted, Sinduja, please wait for me! What struck me was the hairless head of that boy. May be, that is the in style, I thought.

Sir, your daughter Sinduja is great indeed! Without introducing herself, a lady got out of the car, and continued, that boy who is walking along with your daughter is my son Harish. He is suffering from...leukemia. She paused to muffle her sobs.

Harish could not attend the school for the whole of the last month. He lost all his hair due to the side effects of the chemotherapy. He refused to come back to school fearing the unintentional but cruel teasing of the schoolmates.

Sinduja visited him last week, and promised him that she will take care of the teasing issue. But, I never imagined she would sacrifice her lovely hair for the sake of my son!

Sir, you and your wife are blessed to have such a noble soul as your daughter. I stood transfixed. And then, I wept.

My little Angel, you are teaching me, How Selfless is Real Love?

Learning from little Angels: Grandpa's Table (Children Observations)

Learning from little Angels: Grandpa's Table (Children Observations)A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year old grandson. The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered. The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor. When he grasped, the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. "We must do something about Grandfather," said the son. "I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor." So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner. There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner. Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl. When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food. The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, "What are you making?" Just as sweetly, the boy responded, "Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food in when I grow up." The four-year-old smiled and went back to work. The words so struck the parents that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done.

That evening the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to the family table. For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family. And for some reason, neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.

Children are remarkably perceptive. Their eyes ever observe, their ears ever listen, and their minds ever process the messages they absorb. If they see us patiently provide a happy home atmosphere for family members, they will imitate that attitude for the rest of their lives. The wise parent realizes that every day the building blocks are being laid for the child's future. Let's be wise builders and role models. Because Children are our future.

"Life is about people connecting with people, and making a positive difference. Take care of yourself, ... and those you love, ... today, ... and everyday!"

Circumstances or people can take away your material possessions, they can take away your money, and they may even take away your health. But no one can ever take away your precious memories. So, don't forget to make time for your children and take the opportunities to make memories every day!

A famous quote says: "While we try to teach our children all about life, Our children teach us what life is all about."

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Islamic Moral Stories is designed by Akramulla Syed Last Updated: Thursday, December 14, 2017