Every day is Mother’s Day in Islam

In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful

Islam teaches us to honor our parents every day, with a special emphasis on our mothers. It is good to remember your mother on ‘Mother’s Day’ and to give her gifts and kind words, but that should not be a reason to neglect her the rest of the year.

Honoring our parents is so important in Islam that it has been mentioned alongside the worship of Allah, among the greatest of commandments.

Allah said:

وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا ۖ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا

Worship Allah and associate nothing with Him, and be good to parents.

Surat al-Nisa 4:36

And Allah said:

قُلْ تَعَالَوْا أَتْلُ مَا حَرَّمَ رَبُّكُمْ عَلَيْكُمْ ۖ أَلَّا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا ۖ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا ۖ

Say: Come, I will recite what your Lord has made sacred to you, that you do not associate anything with him and be good to your parents.

Surat al-An’am 6:151

And Allah said:

وَقَضَىٰ رَبُّكَ أَلَّا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا إِيَّاهُ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَانًا ۚ إِمَّا يَبْلُغَنَّ عِندَكَ الْكِبَرَ أَحَدُهُمَا أَوْ كِلَاهُمَا فَلَا تَقُل لَّهُمَا أُفٍّ وَلَا تَنْهَرْهُمَا وَقُل لَّهُمَا قَوْلًا كَرِيمًا وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ وَقُل رَّبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيرًا

Your Lord has decreed that you worship none but him and be good to your parents. Whether one or both of them reach old age with you, do not say to them a word of annoyance and do not repel them, but rather speak to them a noble word. Lower to them the wing of humility out of mercy and say: My Lord, have mercy upon them as they brought me up when I was little.

Surat al-Isra 17:23-24

And Allah said:

وَبَرًّا بِوَالِدَتِي وَلَمْ يَجْعَلْنِي جَبَّارًا شَقِيًّا

Jesus said: Allah has made me dutiful to my mother and he has not made me a wretched tyrant.

Surat Maryam 19:32

Our mothers have carried the burden of pregnancy, nursing, and all kinds of motherly duties for which we should be grateful and repay them with kindness. For this reason, Allah commanded us to treat our mothers well, while emphasizing the hardship they endure during child-rearing, even to give special consideration to our mothers over our fathers.

Allah said:

وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ وَهْنًا عَلَىٰ وَهْنٍ وَفِصَالُهُ فِي عَامَيْنِ أَنِ اشْكُرْ لِي وَلِوَالِدَيْكَ إِلَيَّ الْمَصِيرُ

We have enjoined upon humanity to be good to parents. His mother carried him in weakness upon weakness and his weaning is in two years. Be grateful to Me and to your parents, for unto Me is the final destination.

Surat Luqman 31:14

And Allah said:

وَوَصَّيْنَا الْإِنسَانَ بِوَالِدَيْهِ إِحْسَانًا ۖ حَمَلَتْهُ أُمُّهُ كُرْهًا وَوَضَعَتْهُ كُرْهًا ۖ وَحَمْلُهُ وَفِصَالُهُ ثَلَاثُونَ شَهْرًا ۚ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا بَلَغَ أَشُدَّهُ وَبَلَغَ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً قَالَ رَبِّ أَوْزِعْنِي أَنْ أَشْكُرَ نِعْمَتَكَ الَّتِي أَنْعَمْتَ عَلَيَّ وَعَلَىٰ وَالِدَيَّ وَأَنْ أَعْمَلَ صَالِحًا تَرْضَاهُ وَأَصْلِحْ لِي فِي ذُرِّيَّتِي ۖ إِنِّي تُبْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَإِنِّي مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ

We have enjoined upon humanity to be good to parents. His mother carried him with hardship and gave birth to him with hardship, and his gestation and weaning is thirty months. He grows until he reaches maturity and the age of forty years, and he says: My Lord, let me be grateful for your favor that you have bestowed upon me and upon my parents and to work righteousness pleasing to you and to make my offspring righteous. Verily, I have repented to you and I am among the Muslims who surrender to you.

Surat al-Ahqaf 46:15

Abu Huraira reported: A man asked the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, “Who is most deserving of my good company?” The Prophet said:

أُمُّكَ

Your mother.

The man asked, “Then who?” The Prophet said:

أُمُّكَ

Your mother.

The man asked again, “Then who?” The Prophet said:

أُمُّكَ

Your mother.

The man asked again, “Then who?” The Prophet said:

أَبُوكَ

Your father.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5626, Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi

One of the worst sins is an expression of ingratitude towards our mothers and a failure to fulfill our moral and legal obligations towards them. Neglecting our duties to our mothers is, in fact, to neglect the one of the greatest of duties that Allah has imposed.

Al-Mughirah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ حَرَّمَ عَلَيْكُمْ عُقُوقَ الْأُمَّهَاتِ

Verily, Allah has forbidden you from neglecting your duty to your mothers.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 5630, Grade: Sahih

Our duties towards our mothers are even more important than military service. A man once came to the Prophet (s) to ask him for permission to serve in battle in defense of the Muslim community, but he was told to return to his mother and fulfill his duties towards her.

Mu’awiyah ibn Jahima reported: A man came to the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, and he said, “O Messenger of Allah, I intend to join the expedition and I seek your counsel.” The Prophet said:

هَلْ لَكَ مِنْ أُمٍّ

Do you have a mother?

The man said yes. The Prophet said:

فَالْزَمْهَا فَإِنَّ الْجَنَّةَ تَحْتَ رِجْلَيْهَا

Stay with her, for Paradise is beneath her feet.

Source: Sunan al-Nasā’ī 3104, Grade: Sahih

To sum, we should honor our mothers every day of the year. The modern practice of singling out a special day to honor our mothers is done with a good intention, as a means to remind us and renew our commitment to serve our mothers. Nevertheless, it should not be a cause for us to neglect our duties during the rest of the year, as every day is ‘Mother’s Day’ in Islam.

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.