Raising up children or parenting is a crucial job for both mums and dads. There are many parenting styles that some may suit us and some may not. As parents, we would always want to provide the best for our kids. Some parents might agree with each other ways of parenting and some might not agree. Which one is the most correct?
Learning by example is the easiest way to learn to parent. Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported: The Prophet, said, “The best people are those of my generation, then those who come after them, then those who come after them. Then, there will come people after them whose testimony precedes their oaths and their oaths precede their testimony.” (Sahih Bukhari)
We do believe that by following the example of these first 3 generations are the best including their parenting styles. In this article, we would like to highlight 6 parenting points that we can learn from the life story of one of the great young sahabah Abdullah ibn Jaafar (May Allah have mercy on them).
Abdullah ibn Jaafar is one of the prominent young sahabah of Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessing be upon him). He was the nephew of the prophet and the son of Jaafar bin Abi Talib, who was known as Dhul Janahain (The Winged). Abdullah was first married to Zainab bint Ali bin Abu Thalib (his own cousin) and was blessed with 4 sons and a girl, Ali, Awn, Abbas, Muhammad and Umm Kulthum. He was then married to Ummu Khultum bint Ali bin Abu Thalib and died at the year of Al-Juhaf (great flood in Makkah), 80 AH in Madinah.
1. Both of His parents migrated twice for the sake of Allah.
Abdullah ibn Jaafar (May Allah have mercy on them) was the son of Jaafar bin Abi Talib. Jaafar migrated to Abyssinia with his wife, Asma bint Omais to Abbysinia, leaving behind their properties and relatives to escape from the Quraish who tortured the early Muslims. They stayed there for 10 years. All of their children were born and raised in Abyssinia.
They did their second migration for the sake of Allah to Madinah when Abdullah was 7 years old. They arrived in Madinah after the Battle of Hunain. Due to his second migration, Jaafar bin Abi Talib was given a fair portion from the booty of that battle.
2. He grew up surrounded by cousins who among them were great Sahabah.
Abdullah ibn Jaafar grew up in Madinah, surrounded by his cousins after his parents migrated there at 7 years after Hijra. His cousin, Khalid ibn Al Walid who was the son of his maternal aunt, Lababah Sughra accepted Islam after the Treaty of Hudaibiyah. He lived in the same city with him.
Besides him, Abdullah ibn Abbas (May Allah have mercy on them) was also his cousin. He was also the son of his maternal aunt, Lababah Kubra. Abdullah ibn Abbas was the sahabah that were an expert in the tafsir of the Quran.
3. Abdullah ibn Jaafar has a close blood relation with the Prophet and has always followed his footsteps.
Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessing be upon him) was the beloved cousin of Jaafar bin Abi Talib. Abdullah pledged his allegiance to Prophet Muhammad after he came to Madinah at the young age of 7 years old. He was not only resembled his father in appearance, which has resembled Prophet Muhammad but he also possessed good characteristics and attitude, just like his father and the prophet.
When Jaafar bin Abi Talib was martyred in the Battle of Mut’ah, Prophet Muhammad took the guardianship of him. His maternal aunt, Maimoonah bint Al Harith was married to Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessing be upon him) and she was the last to be married to the prophet.
4. Prophet Muhammad make dua for him
Prophet Muhammad (peace & blessing be upon him) make dua for him. “Oh, Allah! Verily, Jaafar has been given the best of rewards, so bless his children with a better recompense than that which You have blessed any of Your slaves. Due to that, Abdullah ibn Jaafar (May Allah have mercy on them) said “ I never bought or sold anything except that it was blessed for me”
5. A son has gained the blessings due to his dad’s status and deeds.
Abdullah Ibn Umar (May Allah have mercy on them) said ‘ If you had seen his father, you would love Abdullah. His father was found with 70 sword and spear wounds on his body. Abdullah Ibn Umar would also greet Abdullah ibn Jaafar: ”May the peace of Allah be upon you, oh, son of Dhul Janahain”
6. Abdullah ibn Jaafar was provided by his parents with an environment of generosity.
Jaafar bin Abi Talib was also well known as the ‘Father of the Needy’. Abdullah was raised in a house of kindness and generosity. He spent his wealth like one who fears not poverty. He and his wife, Zainab, lived in a modest life. They returned other people good deed & generosity with more generosity. He was known as the ‘Sea of Generosity’ and the ‘Most Generous Arab’.
Can we do the same like what Jaafar bin Abi Talib and Asma bint Omais did to his son, Abdullah ibn Jaafar (May Allah have mercy on them)? Have we provided the correct environment for our kids? May Allah make it easy for us as parents to emulate these noble people and may Allah guide us to be like them. Ameen.
Written by Dr Fadzidah Ariffin Umm Abdullah
- Darussalam Research Division, compilation Oct 2003; Child Companions around the prophet
- Al Istiab, vol 3