Celebrating HH Shaikh Nasser fatherhood in the 21st century
Today is a double-label day. For a few years now, June 21, which signifies the summer solstice or the journey of our life-giving star into the Northern hemisphere of the planet has been celebrated also as International Yoga Day and millions of people around the world together practice the ancient Indian health-giving postures.
it is also, I believe, International Father’s Day in many countries and this is celebrated in the Arab world also. Of course, in terms of sheer publicity and business generated Mother’s Day is well ahead of Father’s Day (one florist told me that it was their busiest day because many people may not have a sweetheart on Valentine’s Day, but even small kids buy flowers for their moms and of course, at least 95 out of 100 will have a mother to give flowers to!).
Many people sneer that these are festivals generated by greeting card companies and amplified by florists, chocolatiers and gift shops. That parents must always be revered and respected every day of your life. Of course that is true but a special day set aside to honour the l o v e a n d duty of parents to their children – in fact, any day that honours relation - ships is very welcome in these isolated times.
The role of fathers as care givers is remarked in the Holy Quran in which fathers are significant because they are commanded by Allah (SWT) to work hard to provide the physical, educational, psychological, and spiritual needs of a child. In those simpler times, the word of the parents were sacred and children rarely disobeyed them.
Times have changed today and I believe that parents too must change their parenting style. Today’s world is perhaps the most different from ours, with its technology, its changed social norms and quality of life. We must prepare our children for this Brave New World with a good grasp of what is expected of them morally and spiritually.
Above all, fathers must lead by example because nothing stays in a child’s mind like the example of a loving parent. I wish all readers Happy Father’s Day. As a father, show your children you care. As a child, however old you are, reach out and tell your father that you love him. It will make a world of difference to him.