Dear Beloved Son: Instilling Faith That Endures
Sheikh Zahir Bacchus
This course is about your relationship with Allah. It’s about your children’s relationship with Allah. And, by extension, it’s about how you approach the matter of deen with your children.
One of the issues most troubling youth today is that their beliefs are being challenged. These youth have grown up, gained knowledge, gone to madrasah, come from practicing homes, have learned fiqh and have some basic Islamic knowledge. What’s more, is that access now is unprecedented. Knowledge is more accessible than ever, so it seems that more information ought to lead to stronger faith. Yet, those who had less access 20 years ago fared better. In the previous generation, students went to madrasah and learned the deen, too, but the society then was different. It was more God-centered. There was more focus on character building. Adab education and respect for authority at home and school were central. Then, challenges to their beliefs were very limited, so they wouldn’t be asked to prove their faith or asked to give reason for their beliefs. Atheism wasn’t as prevalent in the common discourse.
Today, anti-religion philosophy is common place, and has crept into even the earliest stages of children’s lives. Youth are being challenged by peers, teachers, and even relatives. These critical questions create an intellectual doubt in their minds. This one doubt will lead to other doubts and questions. This inner turmoil fosters denial and they begin questioning prayer, wearing hijab, and organized religion altogether, and then eventually their faith itself.
We believe that it is Allah that guides. We also believe that Allah has given us asbab, or means to follow, in all matters.
What this course aims to do is provide parents with these tools to instill the faith deep in the hearts of their children. To establish enduring faith in their children’s souls, where intellectual doubts do not creep. To develop a haal, or unshakable inner state, that cannot be disturbed by false flags and modern intellectual propositions. That state leads to tawfeeq, or divine success, that they feel and see in their life. It is the deep feeling of yaqeen (certainty) that engenders a love that cannot be troubled by the fancy talk of modern atheists. This is because this yaqeen gives them a feeling of pleasure when they do the good, and it makes them feel bad when they miss prayers, mistreat someone, or disobey Allah.
Dear Beloved Son, or ‘Ayyuha al-Walad, is a significant and exceptional work by Imam Ghazali, also known as ‘Hujjatul Islam’ – the Proof of Islam. In it he advises a student of his who is having a spiritual dilemma, and guides him through the difficulties of his moral crisis. He does so by providing him with the tools needed to establish that unshakable inner state that leads to certainty and divine success.
- Develop a way to connect knowledge of Islam to meaningful action
- Appreciate that the religion has an inward and an outward aspect, and that outward knowledge must lead to inward realization
- Appreciate your role as a parent as a mentor in terms of loving the deen
- Generate through the advice of Imam Ghazali a tried and true method that causes our children to be affected by the knowledge that they have gained
- Strike a balance between knowledge of the faith and learning by example from the environment and the community and those around us
- Resolve together as parent and child to grow and better your relationship with Allah and His messenger
- Understand that character development is a process that will not stop until we are in the grave
- Weekly live sessions with Instructor – Recorded for you in case you miss it
- Weekly Q/A built in to live sessions
About Shaikh Zahir Bacchus
Zahir Bacchus grew up in Toronto completed his B.Sc. at the University of Toronto before traveling abroad in 1996 to study at the University of Jordan Arabic Program. After spending one year in Jordan, he joined and completed the Arabic program at the University of Damascus and it is in Damascus that he would spend the next six years of uninterrupted study. He had the blessing of learning and sitting in the company of the highly acclaimed scholars of Amman and Damascus.
He returned to Toronto after 7 years abroad and started to conduct classes in the GTA, giving back to the community that he grew up in. Since then, he co-founded the Lote Tree Foundation in 2005, a very successful private elementary school in Brampton. He serves as a director of the Canadian Council of Imam, a member of the Muslim Advisory Committee for the Peel Regional Police, a steering committee member of the Interfaith Council of Peel, and a member of the Faith Forward Committee of the Peel District School Board. He has continued his education, obtaining certifications in teaching and counseling which has led him to conduct workshops throughout North America on character education and youth development.