Translated by Shaykh Ahmed Abdo, during the Australian tour, 2017
The noble intention of mothers, fathers and grandparents has an effect on subsequent generations. That’s why we find great Imams, like Imam Bukhari, Imam Shafi’i, before they were born their parents made noble and pious intentions for their children and look what came of them. It is quite clear that good pious intentions of parents will impact upon their children.
The great Salahudeen Ayoubi, he was the one responsible for the re-opening of Jerusalem al Quds. His father was a little delayed in getting married, however he really loved the scholars and the Awliya and he used to frequently visit the scholars and pious ones. So they used to always say to him “Why don’t you get married?”, and he used to always come up with excuses trying to avoid marriage altogether. They wanted to take him to the various scholars and have explained to him why getting married is good, for you are going to get have children and get lots of rewards. And we have in a hadith that two rakats from a married man is more virtuous than 72 rakat of a man that is single. And he used to say, “I just can’t find the right match”, so the people just left him.
And so one day one of the pious men in the city came to this particular shaykh, and he said look every time someone comes to court my daughter I find that these men are just not good. So this father came with his daughter to the shaykh, in order to have the shaykh persuade the daughter to accept one of these proposals. She was from a poor family, but she was quite knowledgeable, she was quite beautiful, she was intelligent.
When she comes to the shaykh with her dad, he says to her “Why don’t you want to get married? Allah has brought different young men to wed you, however you reject them, you’re intelligent you are understanding, you are beautiful”. And she responds to this shaykh, “I don’t want to get married to any ordinary type of man, the man I want to get married to, I want him to be the father of a child that is not ordinary but is a really pious one that Allah is going to grant victory to the Muslims through.”
At this response the shaykh said, “My daughter, this is a good intention, just wait out until that right man comes who is going to be the father of your children, that will allow the victory of the Muslims. And so whilst this young lady was with her father and the shaykh, some of the men came saying that outside is Najmudeen Ayoub the father of Salahudeen, he wants to speak with you. So the shaykh said to the lady and her father, if you could just move to the side a little I’m going to have a discussion with some other people.
Some people came in with Najmudeen (who was the father of the great Salahudeen) saying that they needed some private time with him. So these other men who were with Najmudeen said to the shaykh, “This is one of our generals of the Ummah of the state, Allah has given him wealth power and control and he still doesn’t want to get married.” The shaykh said to Najmudeen “Why don’t you want to get married? Allah has given you all these things.” And so this man says, “Look shaykh, let me let you in on a secret, I can marry the greatest women of the greatest generals of the army of the Muslims, however I don’t want any ordinary girl. I want a women who understands the importance and value of marriage, I want a woman who will be the mother of a general — a leader of the Muslims. And so the man said, “Shaykh, I don’t care if this women is the daughter of some army general of the Muslims or is from a poor family, it doesn’t really matter, just a girl that understands the value of marriage and who wants to be a mother of a child that will be a general a leader of the Muslims.” The shaykh said, “Don’t you worry my son I have this lady here for you with the same intention.
And so we have here a perfect match of intentions of the man and women who want the same thing from their children and they became the mother and father of this great conqueror and general Salahudeen Ayoubi. Therefore the Muslim man and women should make noble intentions before the birth of the child for that piety, this is first, such that we can produce a generation that holds and bears good and benefit for all people and Muslims.
Notes by Ali Chaudhry ~ Parenting in the Modern World Raising Pious Children ~ Habib Kadhim As-Saqqaf ~ Australia Tour 2017