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Luqman’s Advice to His Son

Posted on: April 7, 2011


In The name of Allah,The Most Merciful,The Most gracious

Luqman’s Advice to His Son


Allah tells us how Luqman advised his son. His full name was Luqman bin `Anqa’ bin Sadun, and his son’s name was Tharan, according to a saying quoted by As-Suhayli. Allah describes him in the best terms, and states that he granted him wisdom. Luqman advised his son, the closest and most beloved of all people to him, who deserved to be given the best of his knowledge. So, Luqman started by advising him to worship Allah Alone, and not to associate anything with Him. Then he warned him:

[إِنَّ الشِّرْكَ لَظُلْمٌ عَظِيمٌ]

(Verily, joining others in worship with Allah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed.) meaning, it is the greatest wrong.

Al-Bukhari recorded that `Abdullah said: “When the Ayah

[الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَلَمْ يَلْبِسُواْ إِيمَـنَهُمْ بِظُلْمٍ]

(It is those who believe and confuse not their belief with Zulm)(6:82) was revealed, the Companions of the Messenger of Allah were distressed by this, and said, `Who among us does not confuse his belief with Zulm’

The Messenger of Allah said:

«إِنَّهُ لَيْسَ بِذَاكَ، أَلَا تَسْمَعُ إِلَى قَوْلِ لُقْمَانَ:

[يَبُنَىَّ لاَ تُشْرِكْ بِاللَّهِ إِنَّ الشِّرْكَ لَظُلْمٌ عَظِيمٌ]»

(That is not what it means. Have you not heard what Luqman said: (O my son! Join not in worship others with Allah. Verily, joining others in worship with Allah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed))”

It was recorded by Muslim. When Luqman advised his son to worship Allah Alone, he also told him to honor his parents. This is like the Ayah,

[وَقَضَى رَبُّكَ أَلاَّ تَعْبُدُواْ إِلاَّ إِيَّـهُ وَبِالْوَلِدَيْنِ إِحْسَـناً]

(And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents) (17:23).

These two things are often mentioned together in the Qur’an. Allah says here:

[وَوَصَّيْنَا الإِنْسَـنَ بِوَلِدَيْهِ حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ وَهْناً عَلَى وَهْنٍ]

(And We have enjoined on man (to be dutiful and good) to his parents. His mother bore him in weakness and hardship upon weakness and hardship,) Mujahid said: “The hardship of bearing the child.” Qatadah said: “Exhaustion upon exhaustion.” `Ata’ Al-Khurasani said: “Weakness upon weakness.”

[وَفِصَالُهُ فِى عَامَيْنِ]

(and his weaning is in two years) means, after he is born, he is breastfed and weaned within two years. This is like the Ayah,

[وَالْوَلِدَتُ يُرْضِعْنَ أَوْلَـدَهُنَّ حَوْلَيْنِ كَامِلَيْنِ لِمَنْ أَرَادَ أَن يُتِمَّ الرَّضَاعَةَ]

(The mothers shall give suck to their children for two whole years, for those who desire to complete the term of suckling)(2:233).

On this basis, Ibn `Abbas and other Imams understood that the shortest possible period of pregnancy was six months, because Allah says elsewhere:

[وَحَمْلُهُ وَفِصَـلُهُ ثَلاَثُونَ شَهْراً]

(and the bearing of him, and the weaning of him is thirty months) (46:15). Allah mentions how the mother brings the child up, and how she gets tired and suffers stress from staying up with the child night and day, to remind the son of her previous kind treatment of him. This is like the Ayah,

[وَقُل رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِى صَغِيرًا]

(and say: “My Lord! Bestow on them Your mercy as they did bring me up when I was young.”) (17:24).

Allah says here:

[أَنِ اشْكُرْ لِى وَلِوَلِدَيْكَ إِلَىَّ الْمَصِيرُ]

(give thanks to Me and to your parents. Unto Me is the final destination.) means, `I will reward you most generously for that.’

[وَإِن جَـهَدَاكَ عَلَى أَن تُشْرِكَ بِى مَا لَيْسَ لَكَ بِهِ عِلْمٌ فَلاَ تُطِعْهُمَا]

(But if they strive with you to make you join in worship with Me others that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not;) means, if they try hard to make you follow them in their religion, then do not accept that from them, but do not let that stop you from behaving with them in the world kindly, i.e. treating them with respect.

[وَاتَّبِعْ سَبِيلَ مَنْ أَنَابَ إِلَىَّ]

(and follow the path of him who turns to Me in repentance and in obedience.) means, the believers.

[ثُمَّ إِلَىَّ مَرْجِعُكُمْ فَأُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ]

(Then to Me will be your return, and I shall tell you what you used to do.) At-Tabarani recorded in Al-`Ishrah that Sa`d bin Malik said, “This Ayah,

[وَإِن جَـهَدَاكَ عَلَى أَن تُشْرِكَ بِى مَا لَيْسَ لَكَ بِهِ عِلْمٌ فَلاَ تُطِعْهُمَا]

(But if they strive with you to make you join in worship with Me others that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not;) was revealed concerning me. I was a man who honored his mother, but when I became Muslim, she said:

`O Sa`d! What is this new thing I see you doing Leave this religion of yours, or I will not eat or drink until I die, and people will say: Shame on you, for what you have done to me, and they will say that you have killed your mother.’ I said, `Do not do that, O mother, for I will not give up this religion of mine for anything.’ She stayed without eating for one day and one night, and she became exhausted; then she stayed for another day and night without eating, and she became utterly exhausted. When I saw that, I said: `O my mother, by Allah, even if you had one hundred souls and they were to depart one by one, I would not give up this religion of mine for anything, so if you want to, eat, and if you want to, do not eat.’ So she ate.”


[يبُنَىَّ إِنَّهَآ إِن تَكُ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ فَتَكُنْ فِى صَخْرَةٍ أَوْ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ أَوْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَأْتِ بِهَا اللَّهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَطِيفٌ خَبِيرٌ - يبُنَىَّ أَقِمِ الصَّلَوةَ وَأْمُرْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَانْهَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَاصْبِرْ عَلَى مَآ أَصَابَكَ إِنَّ ذَلِكَ مِنْ عَزْمِ الاٍّمُورِ - وَلاَ تُصَعِّرْ خَدَّكَ لِلنَّاسِ وَلاَ تَمْشِ فِى الاٌّرْضِ مَرَحاً إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يُحِبُّ كُلَّ مُخْتَالٍ فَخُورٍ - وَاقْصِدْ فِى مَشْيِكَ وَاغْضُضْ مِن صَوْتِكَ إِنَّ أَنكَرَ الاٌّصْوَتِ لَصَوْتُ الْحَمِيرِ ]

“O my son! If it be (anything) equal to the weight of a grain of mustard seed, and though it be in a rock, or in the heavens or on the earth, Allah will bring it forth. Verily, Allah is Subtle, Well-Aware.”

“O my son! Perform the Salah, enjoin the good, and forbid the evil, and bear with patience whatever befalls you. Verily, these are some of the important commandments.”

“And turn not your face away from men with pride, nor walk in insolence through the earth. Verily, Allah likes not any arrogant boaster.”

“And be moderate in your walking, and lower your voice. Verily, the harshest of all voices is the braying of the asses.”

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