Discussions

NATURAL LOVE FOR ORPHANS

One of the most favored areas for Muslim charitable works is the care of orphans. The Last Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) was an orphan himself: his father (went in peace hereafter) either just before or just after he was born, his mother (went in peace hereafter) when he was only six, and he was taken in by the family of his paternal uncle. Several passages in the Qur’an condemn those who misappropriate orphans’ property. The result is that there can be few Islamic welfare organizations that do not include orphans among their beneficiaries, and emotive appeals on their behalf are disseminated to the public. Muslims generally define “orphan” as a child who has lost his or her father, i.e., the family breadwinner. The term “orphan” is held to include foundling infants and street children as well as those with known relatives and is also, in practice, sometimes used as a euphemism for a child born out of wedlock who is rejected by a family. The last few years have seen a flowering of research on Muslim philanthropy as one aspect of broader research interest in charity and humanitarianism.

We confine to some programmatic suggestions, juxtaposing the Islamic predisposition to care for orphans with current trends in child-focused research, thereby revealing what could be a fruitful field for empirical inquiry. The practice of international one-to-one “child sponsorship,” now a staple of many Islamic charities, brings to a head some key issues relating to the care and protection of vulnerable children, which have been widely debated by social researchers but so far almost entirely in the context of Christian and secular institutions.

Child-focused Behaviour

Have you considered him who calls the judgment a lie? That is the one who treats the orphan with harshness. (Qur’an 107:1–2)

One of the most favored areas for Muslim charitable works is the care of orphans. It is grounded in theology, for the Prophet Muhammad was an orphan himself: his father died either just before or just after he was born, his mother died when he was only six, and he was taken in by the family of his paternal uncle. If one speaks of orphans to a pious Muslim, he or she is likely to make a gesture of crossing two fingers, which alludes to a saying of the Prophet that whoever looks after an orphan will be “like this” with him in Paradise. The Prophet also said, “I am he who takes care of the orphan.” Several passages in the Qur’an condemn those who misappropriate orphans’ property (e.g. 93:9, 107:2). The motif of the just treatment of orphans receives much attention in both the ethical-legal and the narrative parts of the Qur’an and hence “has had a long-term impact on later Islamic ethics, law, and practice” (Giladi, 2007). The outcome today is that most Islamic welfare and humanitarian organizations include orphans among their beneficiaries, and emotive appeals on their behalf are disseminated to the public. For instance, the British-based charity Islamic Relief Worldwide now supports some 57,000 orphans around the world: an expansion since its small beginnings in the 1990s. (As well as sponsoring orphanages in Sudan and Albania, it embarked from 1992 on one-to-one sponsorship schemes for orphans in Bosnia, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. Issues relating to international one-to-one orphan sponsorship will be our principal focus.

Muslims traditionally define an “orphan” as a child who has lost his or her father, i.e., the family breadwinner, which seems to have been also a dominant concern in the Hebrew Bible as well as in the Qur’an. The loss of a mother in patriarchal societies is not seen as so disastrous, though passages in the Qur’an, such as the story of Moses (Mūsā) in Surahs 20 and 28, vividly evoke maternal values of tenderness and solicitude. The term “orphan” is often held to include foundling infants and street children as well as those with known relatives, and is also, in practice, sometimes used as a euphemism for a child born out of wedlock who is rejected by a family.

The last few years have seen a flowering of research on Muslim philanthropy as one aspect of broader research interest in charity and humanitarianism. It may even be claimed that the step of taking seriously the Islamic traditions has helped to decenter the study of “Western” humanitarianism and to draw attention to its religious and philosophical underpinnings. A comprehensive overview of research to date on Islamic philanthropy would now be welcome. All we propose here is to make some programmatic suggestions, juxtaposing the predisposition in favor of orphans, an undisputed core of Islamic teaching, with current trends in child-focused research and thereby revealing what could be a fruitful field for empirical and collaborative inquiry.

Surface Model | Alkidmat Foundation

Though there must be other equally promising lines of possible investigation with regard to orphans and vulnerable children, we all shall focus on the specific take care of one-to-one child sponsorship.

Here to see advice upon principles favored by many (though not all) anthropologists

The assumption that though there are important specific differences between cultural practices and institutions — in this case, between the tradition of Islamic care for orphans and its Christian and secular homologs — a comparative approach is nonetheless possible and indeed necessary for rigorous social research.

SOCIAL GOOD MESSAGE

Sparrows by morning, live in peaceful nests! Design shouldn’t dominate things, shouldn’t dominate people. It should help people. Don’t spend your time solving your favorite problems, solve problems that need to be solved, generically. A home is a place where you live, and society is a place where your story begins. Honesty shares honesty, as it is honesty’s nature. Stay always in Ablution and get back to the trust you have been, with.

Addendum
Usfoor Next Orisons

President

The divine scriptures are God’s beacons to the world. Surely God offered His trust to the heavens and the earth, and the hills, but they shrank from bearing it and were afraid of it. And man undertook it.
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