>> Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Asalammu Alaykum! :)Wa alaykum Salaam Layla, ♥ :)
May Allah [SWT] keep you in good health, Insh'Allah. Ameen!
I have a little problem. I live in the United States - but, actually, I'm from Pakistan. Anyway, I'm 15-years old, and I have seen a lot of Muslims/Muslimahs in the United States. All the Pakistani Muslims that I have seen are, well .... err .... not pious Muslims. I don't mean to offend anyone, but they don't act like Muslims - most of them. They smoke hookah, make out with girls, skip their classes, do drugs, etc. These are all haram. I have younger brothers [8 and 4]; I am the oldest sibling. I don't want my brothers to lose their track in Islam. I fear that if they grow older, they might become like the rest of the other Pakistani Muslims, influenced by the media of the America. I will be embarrassed and depressed if my brothers will ever become like that!
My 8-year old brother gets into trouble in school. Well, now he stopped, but he used to. He talked to other students in his class, while the teacher was explaining something. My mother scolded him, so he stopped. Also, he's not very smart. All of my other male cousins study hard and respect their elders. My 8-year brother fails almost all his tests no matter how hard he studies. He didn't get accepted into Gifted Classes because he has low marks. He speaks back to his elders. He is violent and screams a lot. My 4-year old brother is not like this, but sometimes, I am afraid that he will be.
I keep telling my 8-year old brother about Islam - about Jannah [Heaven] and Jahannam [Hell], but I think he ignores me. I tell him about all the Punishments, and he probably ignores me with that, too. He likes to watch TV, play on the computer, and play sports.
I know that he should be around other good Muslims, who are his age, but the problem is: There are no other Muslims, who are his age. My male cousins, who are pious Muslims, are in Pakistan. They don't come to United States. All of my brother's friends are not-so-pious Muslims.
My brother doesn't know anything about Islam. He's collecting sin, sin, and more sin. And what will he have to show Allah Taa'la? As the older sibling, I feel responsible. My mother tried to teach him, but he always speaks back to her. Now, I guess it's up to me. But, what should I do? I tried everything - I told him about Allah Taa'la, Jannah/Jahannam, etc. He just ignores me!
I'm extremely sorry that you have to read this whole thing. It's very long, I know. I'll be patient. I know it takes time to answer all the questions you recieve.
Firstly, apologies for the late answer! Sounds like you've got an awful lot to handle and I think it's so good of you to take the reponsibility for your siblings. May Allah reward you for your good intentions and efforts in being such a fantastic older sister. (:
Now it seems that if you try to help you 8 year old brother, he could be an example for your 4 year old as he grows. 8 years old is still young, mashaAllah so you just need to show him that Islam is a whole lifestyle, even for a child! Some things you can do to make faith fun for younger children include:
It's new and vibrant and interactive. There're many resources available which use a multimedia medium in order to convey a particular message or some knowledge.
-Nasheeds!: Zain Bhika's album 'Our World' is very child-friendly and I'm sure an 8 year old would to hear the messages Zain Bhika gives. You can find it and other great nasheeds here.
-TV! : Once again, Zain Bhika, along with Dawud Wharnsby has a great series which is really fun-loving and educational too. Here it is. And Baba Ali has some great videos aimed at younger children; Here.
-Websites! : I found this really cool website for kids, I actually love it :'). http://www.muslimkidsville.com/ ! Check it out! :D
When you're not in a Muslim country, it can be easy to lack efforts in celebrations like Eid. Christmas and other holidays are hyped up so much, right - no wonder kids want to take part in a school nativity play rather than see their families in pretty clothing on Eid.
All it takes is some balloons, games and stories about why this Eid is taking place. Make Eid a special event for your brothers to remember with a smile of excitement!
Only a few more months and Ramadan will start to approach. Make it exciting! Make sure they know why we fast, so explain why it's good to follow what Allah has ordered us, because He loves us a lot and He knows what is best for us!
When Ramadan does come, inshaAllah, make sure you all get treats at iftaar. :D
You're fifteen, (just a year younger than me), although you are responsible (and mature for taking this responsibility), do remember to stay calm and stay happy. It's the best example for your brothers if you're happy and in Islam - they'll get the message that that's what Islam gives - happiness! :D
Take any and every opportunity to show him that Islam is in everything we do. And that he will be rewarded for good deeds, inshaAllah! Talk to him about ALLAH. And everything He does for us. Most of all, pray for him, Layla.
Your efforts in helping your brother will not be wasted. Allah is with you in every little difficulty and heartache which comes your way in this task.
Keep praying and keep smiling dearest Layla :).