by Moulana Moosa ibn Ahmad Olgar, extract: Upbringing of Children
After some time has elapsed, the couple desire that Allah Taa’la bless them with a child and thus through marital consummation Allah Taa’la grants their wish. The first stage that follows is that of pregnancy. A person should not be ashamed of being pregnant or treat it as a big burden, as there are many beautiful virtues and rewards for being pregnant.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “The woman that dies in her virginity or during her pregnancy or at the time of birth or thereafter (in nifaas) will attain the rank of a martyr.”
It is mentioned in another Hadith that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Does it not please you (O Women!) that when you conceive from your husbands while he is pleased with you then that woman will receive such reward equal to that of a fasting person in the path of Allah and spending the night in ibaadat. When her labour pains commence the inhabitants of the earth and the sky are unaware of the stores of comfort that are prepared for her. When she delivers and breast feeds her child then she will be granted a reward for every gulp of milk, and if she had to remain awake during the night for the sake of her child, she will receive the reward of emancipating seventy slaves in the path of Allah. O Salaamat! Do you know who these women are? They are pious, upright, delicately natured but yet are obedient to their husbands and not ungrateful to them.”
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “A woman from her pregnancy till the time of weaning her child is like one protecting the boundaries of the Islamic state. If she passes away during this period she attains the reward of martyrdom.”
In another Hadith it is mentioned that, “The woman who dies of labour pains is regarded as a martyr (shaheedah).”
A woman should therefore gladly bear these difficulties patiently and calmly as she will be highly rewarded.
Hazrat Mail bin Yasaar (radiyallahu anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Marry such women who are loving and produce children (in abundance) because (on the day of Qiyaamah) I will vie with other Ummats and be proud of your numbers.”
In another Hadith Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Even the miscarried foetus will drag its mother towards Jannat if she exercised patience with the hope of acquiring reward.”
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “When the woman breast feeds then on every gulp of milk the child receives, the reward is as though she has granted life to a being and when she weans her child, then the angels pat her on her back saying: CONGRATULATIONS! all your past sins have been forgiven, now start all over again.”
[By sins is intended the minor sins, this is also a great reward.]
DAYS OF PREGNANCY
During this time, great care and precautions should be adopted. During this stage, any physical weaknesses affect the growth of the child. In the early days of pregnancy, constipation should be avoided as there is a fear of miscarriage. Constipation is a fairly common complaint during pregnancy. Stimulant laxatives should be avoided in pregnancy and while breast-feeding. Similarly diarrhoea should be avoided as this can make her weak and at times can result in a miscarriage.
During this period nausea, vomiting and discomposure is experienced. This induces a desire for sour and salty foods. Some women have a sudden craving for black soil and soap etc. Caution should be taken that no such items are consumed which are detrimental to the health. Also extremely bitter and spicy foods should be avoided. During pregnancy simple foods should be eaten that assist in digestion.
If during the days of pregnancy any sickness befalls you, then immediate treatment should be given and the doctor should be told of your pregnancy. One should not feel ashamed of being pregnant. Those women who have their first pregnancy are ashamed to tell their in-laws and relatives and as a result they suffer.
The pregnant woman should remember that giving birth to a normal child does not lead to so much of weakness as in the case of a miscarriage. Therefore if one has a miscarriage, full precautions should be taken or else this weakness will affect her for the rest of her life.
During the early days of pregnancy, very heavy things should not be carried or lifted. Likewise jumping from a high place, hopping, running or any form of physical (pain) strain should be prevented as this may cause excessive bleeding or even a miscarriage.
The Islamic education of the child starts when the child is still in the womb of the mother. This is through the thoughts that she carries in those days, by the feelings that she has, by the kind of books that she reads, by the kind of company that she keeps and by the kind of things that she hears.
During pregnancy frightening pictures of deformed children or animals should not be seen. One should look at beautiful children, flowers and should smell beautiful fragrances.
Also during pregnancy reading evil books, having evil thoughts, bad intentions, practising of bad habits and doing sinful works should be avoided or else there is a fear that these evils may effect the unborn child later on. All these have an effect on the unborn child because the mother’s nervous system is affecting all the systems of the baby. Although the baby has its own independent systems, remember it is the mother’s womb that is carrying the baby and that the baby is being affected by whatever she is thinking, feeling, reading and listening to. It is better and advisable for the mother to keep good company, to read good books (the Quraan Shareef should be read in abundance) and to be at such places where she hears the words of Allah and about our DEEN. It is important to have good feelings, good thoughts and not to carry grudges, have fear of something or be unduly worried about something. One should always remain calm and happy and should not be allowed to be over concerned and allow oneself to be overtaken by grief. The thoughts that you generate within yourself will influence the kind of disposition the child will have. If you are sad and miserable the child will be equally affected. So remember the environment prior to the child’s birth is as important as the environment he is born into.
WHAT TO READ DURING PREGNANCY
During the days of pregnancy, duas for the protection from calamities should be read in abundance. Also the performance of Salaat regularly is a protection from calamities. The following duas and surahs should be read in abundance during pregnancy:
A’oodhu bikalimmatillaahit taammmaati min sharri maa khalaqa
I seek refuge in the perfect words of Allah from the evil of that which He has created.
Hasbunallaahu wa ni’imal wakeel
Allah suffices us and He is the best guardian
Inniy u’eedhuhaa bika wa dhurriyyatahaa minas shaytaanir rajeem
And I command her and her offspring to Thy protection, from the evil one, the rejected.
Aayatul Kursi, surah Yaseen, surah Maryam, surah Yusuf and surah Muhammad
Also it is mentioned that Hazrat Fatima (radiyallahu anha) reports that when it was time for her to deliver her child, “Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) sent Umme Salma (radiyallahu anha) and Hazrat Zainab (radiyallahu anha) to me with the instruction that they read Aayatul Kursi, surah Al-Falaq and An-naas and the following verse for easy delivery:
Inna rabbakumullaahul ladhiy khalaqas samaawaati wal ardha fiy sittati ayyaamin thumma-stawaa alal arsh, yughshiyl llaylan nahaara wa yatlubuhoo hatheethan was shamsa wal qamara wan nujooma musakh-kharaatim bi amrihi. Alaa lahul khalqu wal amru, tabaaraka llaahu rabbul aalameen. Ud’oo rabbakum tadharru’an wa khufyatan, innahoo laa yuhibbul mu’tadeen.” Surah Al-A’raf (7:54,55)
If a woman has difficulty during childbirth, the following should be written on paper, wrapped in a piece of white cloth and tied around her left thigh. Insha-Allah it will ease the birth.
Also Aayatul Kursi and the two Ayats from surah Al-A’raf (7: 54,55) are to be recited near the woman in throes of birth. Surah Al-Falaq and An-Naas are also to be read and thereafter blown on her.
CERTAIN BEAUTIFUL NAMES OF ALLAH TO BE READ BEFORE AND DURING PREGNANCY
Yaa waahidul ahad, The ONE Un-Equalled
Anyone desiring good and pious children should inscribe this ism on paper, or cloth and keep it with him at all times.
Yaa awwalu, The First.
Anyone desirous of male children should say this ism 40 times daily for 40 days. His needs will soon be fulfilled. (Insha-Allah)
Yaa mubdi-u, The Originator
Anyone who, while placing his hand on the stomach of his pregnant wife, repeats this ism 99 times at the time of sehri, neither will she have a miscarriage nor will she give birth prematurely. (Insha-Allah)
Yaa barru, The Good.
Anyone who reads this ism 7 times and blows on his child soon after birth, Allah will grant the child protection from calamities until puberty. (Insha-Allah)
Yaa baari-u, One Who Gives Life.
If a barren woman fasts for 7days and each day, after making Iftaar with water, reads this ism 21 times Allah will grant her male children. (Insha-Allah)
Yaa musawwiru, Fashioner of Shapes.
If a barren woman fasts and each day, after making Iftaar with water read this ism 21 times Allah will grant her male children. (Insha-Allah
Yaa naafi-u, One Who Confers Benefits.
If this ism is said prior to having intercourse, Allah will grant him good and pious children. (Insha-Allah)
FASTING DURING PREGNANCY
If the pregnant woman is certain or almost certain that if she fasts the foetus will be harmed or she herself will be harmed, she is then permitted not to observe the fasts.
If a woman comes to know after having had the intention of the fast that she is pregnant and she is almost certain that fasting would be harmful for her, she is then permitted to break the fast and observe it on another day without expiation.
WHAT TO EAT DURING PREGNANCY
During the days of pregnancy good and pure foods are essential for the health of the child. But excess of healthy foods and fruits and too much of resting causes the weight of the child to increase due to which delivery becomes difficult. Therefore excess of healthy foods should not be consumed, nor should there be too much of resting. A little bit of work should be done.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “If a woman eats sweet melon, she will give birth to a handsome and pretty child.”
It is interesting to note that an intelligent child is born when a pregnant woman eats beans. Also it increases the mother’s milk.
During the days of pregnancy by eating coconut and sugar candy, it lessens the amount of vomiting. There is easiness at the time of the birth of the child. Also on the body of the child there would be no heat rashes and the child will be fair and pure (skin) and the child will be born healthy. (Insha-Allah)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has emphasised the importance of dates and their effectiveness in the growth of the foetus. He (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) recommended that they be given to women. Sayyidah Maryam (alayhas salaam) had dates as her food during her confinement and labour. Experiments have shown that dates contain stimulants which strengthen the muscles of the uterus in the last months of pregnancy. This helps the dilation of the uterus at the time of delivery on one hand and reduces the bleeding after delivery on the other. Dates enrich the breast milk with all the elements needed to make the child healthy and resistant to disease. Modern Science has proved that dates are a part of a healthy diet. They contain sugar, fat and proteins as well as important vitamins. They are also rich in natural fibres. Medical research has proven that they are effective in preventing stomach cancer. Dates also surpass other fruit in sheer variety of their constituents. They contain oil, Calcium, Sulphur, Iron, Potassium, Phosphorous, Manganese, Copper and Megnesium. In other words, one date is a mini-mine of a balanced and healthy diet.
Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam) is reported to have said that bitter orange (grapefruit) is a cure for all illnesses. Also, it increases the milk in the mother’s breast.