Chapter 15, Sipara ‘Sub Han Allazi’, Sura 17, ‘Al- Isra’- ‘The journey by night’ also called ‘Bani Israeel’- ‘Sons of Israeel’:
Verse 23: And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honour.
Verse 24: And lower unto them the wing of submission and humility through mercy, and say “My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy as they did bring me up when I was young”.
Verse 25: Your Lord knows best what is in your inner-selves. If you are righteous, then, verily, He is Ever Most Forgiving to those who turn unto Him again and again in obedience, and in repentance.
Explanation: Above Verses are the most detailed verses of Quran explaining the behavior of children towards their parents. They are very easy to understand.
Being unkind, undutiful and disrespectful to one’s own parents is as big a sin as ‘shirk’. ‘Shirk’ means worshiping any other ilah, other than Allah Sub Han Wa Ta’ala. Being unkind, undutiful and disrespectful to one’s own parents is mentioned with, ‘shirk’, in the same Verse (23), side by side, therefore it means that the severity and gravity of both the sins is the same in the Exalted Eyes of Allah Sub Han Wa Ta’ala.
Although here one’s parents in old age are mentioned; Old age is an age when normally people become physically and mentally weak. This some times may make them impatient and difficult to handle. Allah orders His servant to take more care of his/ her parents in their old age. Allah has great rewards for that servant who remains humble, helping and dutiful to his/ her mentally and physically weak, impatient and difficult old parents. That is the time when parents are unable to take care of themselves any more and when they are not in control of themselves any more and when they are in need of their children and they are dependent on their children in some way or the other. Allah orders the children to talk to their parents with humbleness and softness, with respect and with honour.
But above orders are not exclusively and only for those parents who are in their excessive old age or are in mentally or physically weak conditions or are impatient, difficult, needy and dependent in one way or the other, on their children.
These orders are for those parents as well who are not so old yet, who are in good condition health wise, who are earning and supporting themselves well and are not so needy or dependent on their children. Allah has great rewards for that servant as well who remains humble, helping and dutiful to his/ her healthy and independent parents and who talks to them with humbleness and softness, with respect and with honor.
Verse 23 orders that one must always talk in a respectful way and an honorable way to one’s parents. It means one must keep one’s voice lower than one’s parent’s voice and one must never ever raise one’s voice louder than one’s parent’s voice. One must never shout upon one’s parents what ever the disagreement may be. It’s always good to remain silent than to say some thing disrespectful, disobedient, harsh and wrong to one’s parents.
Verse 24 orders that even one’s posture should be humble, unassuming, timid, and submissive when one is in the company of his/ her parents. One must all the time remember, especially at the time of disagreement with parents, how the parents brought him/ her up with love and care when they were young, weak and needy. One must all the time pray to Allah for His mercy on his/ her parents. Aameen.
After these Verses where one is ordered by Allah to behave well in company of one’s parents, Verse 25 orders one to be righteous that is to act exactly as told in the Verses 23 & 24. Allah knows what is in His servant’s heart. Whether His servant respects his/ her parents from the bottom of his/ her heart or not? But by actions Allah orders His servant to show respect and act respectfully when he/ she is in the company of his/ her parents. Allah is Most Forgiving to those who turn to Him again and again in obedience and in repentance. It means by the time His servant learns to adjust with his/ her aging parents, the parents may get hurt even by an un- intentional word or action or any other way, the children must apologize from their parents immediately. And the children must turn to Allah as well for forgiveness and for guidance. One turns for forgiveness again and again till there remains no more hurt for the parents by their own children. And there is humble, honorable and respectful peace and happiness for the parents.
May Allah give long peaceful life to our parents and may Allah make all of us good, humble and respectful children towards our parents. Aameen.