Son Accused Of Hiring Classmate To Kill Mom... (Another Wakeup Call)

10 January 2010

By El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan


Assalaamu Alaikum (Greetings of Peace):
When I read this article it immediately brought tears to my eyes. (You heard it right; it made me cry.) As Muslims in America - a religious minority struggling under the weight of open societal bigotry - we should read and reflect deeply over this story. We should discuss it with our families; we should take stock on the quality of our own familial relationships, our priorities in life, and be honest with ourselves in the process.
Let me begin by stating loud and clear, the young man who hired another young man to KILL his MOTHER, was a "Muslim" in name only! The young man who entered into the conspiracy and took this mother's life was "Muslim" in name only! They were both culturally Muslim by virtue of having been born into [what may have been culturally] Muslim families. Clearly the deen of Islam was completely absent from their lives.


ALLAH, The Most Just, has instructed us all in The Noble Qur’an (the final revelation to all humanity): “Your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to your parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in your life, do not speak to them contemptuously, nor repel them; but address them in terms of honor. And out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: ‘My Lord! Bestow on them Your mercy, even as they cherished me in childhood.’” (Surah 17; 23-24)


There are many lessons in this tragic story


According to the Houston Chronicle report (see below), this now deceased Pakistani mother, Tabassum Khan, cherished her son. She loved him, sacrificed for him, and attempted to control his self-destructive impulses. While his father was absent from the picture (no doubt a factor in this young man’s disturbance), there were other male elders in the picture. However, from the comments made to the Houston Chronicle reporter (if accurate), they were out-of-touch in terms of what this young man (and many others in America like him) really needed.


We often hear the term “American Islam,” more often than not with a derogatory spin. But the fact of the matter is, just as there are two Americas, there are also two sides to this phenomenon called “American Islam.” This young man, and his equally disturbed co-conspirator, reflects the more secular and narcissistic “American Islam.”  What is important to note is that they were not born this way. They became this way through a process of acculturation (or de-Islamization) over the course of years.


This is a very important point that shouldn’t be lost, because a well organized effort is being made to drive as Muslims as possible (especially young Muslims) away from their deen (Al-Islam). And as I said to a large audience a few months ago (predominantly made up of young Muslims), one of the most important challenges they face in America is to “have faith in your faith!”


I made an observation many years ago in a book entitled Why Our Children Are Killing Themselves, which in the present context is worth revisiting:


“It is my humble opinion that the religion which has long held sway in the Western education system is the religion of atheistic materialism: the worship of man’s own intellect and limited empirical knowledge. This process of indoctrination begins on the elementary level, continues through the secondary level, and by the time young minds pass through college or university “training,” in many cases, perhaps most, they have been so deeply and efficiently materialized that they lose the ability to believe in anything beyond their own limited powers of observation. Cut off from and feeling no accountability toward a Divine Creator, the process of developing young minds devoid of sound ethics, values and moral principles efficiently produces brilliant, psychotic, state-of-the-art criminals and malcontents in many areas of social endeavor.”


These words are even more relevant today than they were in 1989 when first written. What we are witnessing today serves as a vivid example of what can happen when people of faith (irrespective of creed) lose themselves in a lais-sez-faire ethos.


It is reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was once asked: “Who is most deserving of my attention?” The Prophet replied, “Your mother.” The questioner than asked, “And who is next?” Again the Prophet replied, “Your mother.” Again the questioner asked, “And who is next?” And again the Prophet replied, “Your mother.” It was only after the fourth inquiry that the Prophet replied, “Your father.”


In the earliest, most formative years of a child’s life, the bond with mother is the most important connection a child has. And this is why the last Messenger of ALLAH (pbuh) is also reported to have said: “Paradise lies at the feet of mother.”


These two young men have committed a crime that will be with them for the rest of their lives; and, according to the book of ALLAH (SWT), will follow them into the next life. May ALLAH (The Most Merciful) have mercy on Sr. Tabassum Khan; may He forgive her sins and grant her Paradise. As for her son…I can only pity the years ahead.


This is another wakeup call, O Muslims. I do hope we’re listening.


11006 Veirs Mill Rd, STE L-15, PMB 298
Silver Spring, MD. 20902



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