Children are a source of delight and an embellishment for the world granted by Allah to the parents. Children give strength to the hearts, joy to the souls and pleasure to the eyes. Indeed Islam has surely exalted the status of children and has laid down manners for their treatment relating to all their affairs and each stage of their and from these are the manners for welcoming their arrival in this life. Allah Almighty says in Noble Quran related to have children in these words: “…So now, have relations with them and seek that which Allah has decreed for you…” (Quran 2: 187)
Childbirth is one of the most amazing blessings which Allah Almighty has given to us. After giving birth to a child it is recommended to welcome newborn by following the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said about the encouragement to have children in these words: “Marry the loving and fertile because through you, I will compete with the nations for superiority in numbers.”(Abu Dawood)
After the child is born, these are the Sunnahs that every Muslim parent should perform. Below we are going to discuss some Sunnahs that every parent should do after their child has been born:
- Calling Adhaan in the ear of Newborn: When a child is born, firstly the Adhaan should be said in his/her ear. Adhaan should be recited in the right ear, and in the left ear Iqamah. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has done the same. Narrated by Abu Raafi’ who said: “I saw the Prophet (SAW) call the Adhaan in the ear of Al-Hasan Ibn ‘Ali when his mother Fatimah gave birth to him.” (Tirmidhi )
- Tahneek: Tahneek means to softening or chewing a date and then rubbing the palate of the new-born with it just after the birth or soon after. If the date is not available, you can also put honey in the mouth of baby. Aisha (RA) reported that: “New-born children used to be brought to the Messenger of Allah and he would supplicate for blessings for them, and rub a chewed date upon their palate.” (Muslim)
- Naming the Newborn Child: An honorable name for your child has the importance in Islam. Prophet Muhammad (SAW) has always chosen the names with beautiful meanings. You can also name your child after the companions of Muhammad (SAW). In holy Quran Allah Almighty says about the naming of child in these words: “Call them by [the names of] their fathers; it is more just in the sight of Allah…” (Quran, 33: 5). From this verse of Holy Quran the right of the father is shown by the principle that the child is ascribed and attributed to the father. The name should carry a good and honorable meaning as the Messenger (PBUH) said: “On the Day of Resurrection, you will be called by your names and your fathers’ names, so make your names good.” (Abu Dawood)
- Aqeeqah: Aqeeqah is a form of Sadaqah which safeguards your child from all the Evil. It is done after the seventh day of the arrival of the new-born, as a form of welcome for it and to give thanks to the One who gave the blessings, it is prescribed to slaughter a sheep. The Messenger (SAW) said: “Every child is in pledge for its ‘Aqeeqah which is sacrificed for it on its seventh day, and it is named on it, and its head is shaved” (Abu Dawood). If the new-born is a boy then two sheep are to be sacrificed, and if it is a girl then one sheep.
- Shaving the Newborn’s Head: It is compulsory to shave newborn’s head on the 7th day, along with Aqeeqah as it is desirable. When Al-Hasan (RA) was born, the Prophet (PBUH) told his daughter, Fatima (RA): “Shave his head and give the weight of his hair in silver to the poor.”(Ahmad)
- Circumcision: It is recommended that the baby boy should be circumcised. The circumcision should take place on the seventh day, but it is obligatory to circumcise before the boy reaches maturity.
These were some Sunnahs of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) related to the newborn that every Muslim parent should perform. Observance of these Sunnahs guarantees the health, as well as the proper upbringing of the child. May Allah Almighty give guidance to every parent to perform these actions and also to do justice to their children! Ameen