Date : 20-03-2016

Question :

Could you clarify the ruling of Sharia on the so called "Mother`s Day"?

The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of The Worlds; and may His peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

"Mother`s day", as called by people, is a day for visiting mothers and giving them gifts. It isn`t intended in the sense of the Eid(festival) prescribed in Sharia; rather, it aims to show loyalty and appreciation to mothers, and this day was agreed upon worldwide.

Honoring one`s mother on this day in the above sense is a normal matter that doesn`t conflict with the provisions of Sharia which encourage showing loyalty, gratitude, and thanks to parents at every time and place. Allah, The Almighty, said: "Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents: to Me is (thy final) Goal."{Luqman/14}. Obeying parents and doing good to them is obligatory; whereas, disobeying them is among the major sins. Allah, The Almighty, said: "Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none but Him, and that ye be kind to parents."{Al-Isra`/23}.

The mother`s right to fine treatment is greater than that of the father. It is three times the right of the father. This is reflected in the following Hadith: "A person came to Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and asked, "Who among people is most deserving of my fine treatment?" He (PBUH) said, "Your mother". He again asked, ''Who next?" "Your mother", the Prophet (PBUH) replied again. He asked, "Who next?" He (the Prophet (PBUH)) said again, "Your mother." He again asked, "Then who?" Thereupon he (PBUH) said," Then your father."{Related by Bukhari&Muslim}.

Honoring mothers on this day isn`t an imitation of a banned practice; rather, it is done out of a general wisdom since "A wise word is the lost property of the believer, so wherever he finds it, he has more right to it." This is particular to a matter that Sharia encourages people to do and doesn`t contradict with its provisions. For instance, Muslims fast on the (Day of Ashura) while knowing that Jews observe fast on it. It was narrated that Ibn Abbas said: "The Prophet (PBUH) came to Al- Madinah, and he found the Jews observing a fast. He said: ‘What is this?’ They said: ‘This is the day when Allah saved Musa and drowned Pharaoh, so Musa fasted this day in gratitude.’ The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: ‘We have more right to Musa than you do.’ So he fasted (that day) and enjoined (others) to fast it also."{Bukhari&Muslim}.

Therefore, we have more right to honoring mothers than other nations. However, the Hadith of the Prophet(PBUH), which reads: "You will follow the wrong ways, of your predecessors so completely…"{Bukhari and Muslim}, is intended as a prohibition for Muslims from imitating other nations in forbidden matters and their religious particulars that conflict with our Sharia.

However, imitating lawful and useful matters is permissible. Judge Aiad said, "This refers to matters that Sharia has forbidden as far as their(non-Muslim nations) faith is concerned." Obeying one`s mother and doing good to her is a religious obligation that must be observed at all times, whether she is alive or dead, through supplicating for her, asking Allah to forgive her, maintaining her kinship ties, and honoring her female acquaintances. And Allah knows best.