A beautiful message is doing it’s round on the social media with an unknown source. It’s a pertinent reminder to us all iterating the status of our parents and what we ought to do for them.
When a parent passes away remember that you have begun a new phase of birr (dutifulness) to that parent.
Birr after death is the truest and most sincere forms of birr because birr during their lifetime could be tainted with show-off, being polite (as opposed to sincere) and expecting praise from the parents or others. As for after their death, then only Allah hears and sees you.
A deceased parent is in greater need of his/her children – even more than when they the parent was alive.
What children do for the parents during the parent’s lifetime is most of the time for worldly needs.
But after death only Allah knows what good and bad is in store for the deceased in the grave.
Du’a – i.e., supplication to Allah – for rahmah (mercy), asking Allah to shower the deceased with His mercy is invaluable for the deceased.
Through the child’s Du’a, Allah – with His grace and mercy – enlightens the grave removing the darkness and expands the grave thus removing the suffering. And Allah makes the grave a garden from the gardens of Paradise for the deceased.
A number of ahadeeth talk about the high virtue of a child making du’a for his/her parents, as the Prophet of Allah (peace be upon him) once said as reported in Tirmidhi, 1376:
“When a person dies, all his deeds come to an end except three: sadaqah jaariyah (ongoing charity, e.g. a waqf or endowment), beneficial knowledge (which he has left behind), or a righteous child who will pray for him.”
And he (peace be upon him) also explained as reported in Ibn Majah, 3660 & Saheeh al-Jaami’, 1617:
“A man’s status will be raised in Paradise and he will ask, ‘How did I get here?’ He will be told, ‘By your son’s du’aa’s (prayers) for forgiveness for you.”
Therefore, always remember your deceased parent/s, and always ask Allah to shower them with His mercy, enlighten their grave and expand it.
Remember them in your Du’a during sujood (the prostration), between the adhaan and the iqamah, as you fast and in every act of worship and at all times.
For example as you are about have a meal think about the many wonderful meals your mother had prepared for you and how she looked after you all your life. Think about your father, who worked to earn halal and provide the halal food, shelter and much more for you and the family.
Your heart will surely soften and at that point, let it drive you to offer a similar meal to an orphan, widow, divorced or needy person on behalf of your deceased parent, begging of Allah to reward them for it.
Give charity on their behalf, recalling the many favours they did for you.
Never forget parents. No matter how harsh they may have been with you, only Allah knows the love they had in their hearts for you.
Give charity on their behalf privately, wipe away the tears of orphans, widows and divorced (through charity) on behalf of your parents, quench the thirst of the thirsty on their behalf (by having a well dug, for example).
Go out of your way to be the best child to your parents for they have sacrificed much to raise you.
Other excellent acts of charity, sadaqa jariyah, you can do on their behalf are sponsoring Quran mushafs, helping others to keep fasts, building of masajid, supporting Dawah work and the like.
This is the Du’a for parents as mentioned in the Qur’an 17:24:
رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيرًا
Rabb-ir-ham-huma kama rabbayaani sagheera
‘My Lord .. Bestow thy mercy on my parent/s as they cherished and raised me in my childhood’
Lastly let us teach our children about this Du’a for one day we all shall need it.