مَوْتُ الوالِدِ قاصِمَةُ الظَّهْرِ۔

The death of a father breaks one’s back.



The death of a father breaks one’s back.

— Imam Ali a.s.
(Ghurar al-Hikam: Parents)

Personal Reflection

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (), his pure progeny, and his noble companions.

The provided Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states,

The death of a father breaks one’s back.

This beautiful saying highlights the immense impact and emotional weight that the loss of a father carries. Let us delve deeper into the meaning of this Hadith and explore its significance in light of the Quran.

The word (qasimatu) "قاصِمَةُ" in the Hadith refers to something that breaks or fractures. It signifies the overwhelming burden and hardship that one experiences upon the death of their father. The word (dhahr) "ظَّهْرِ" means back, symbolizing the weight and responsibility that a father carries in supporting and guiding his children.

In the Quran, Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) emphasizes the importance of honoring and respecting parents. In Surah Al-Isra, Allah says, (Quran 17:23)

And your Lord has decreed that you not worship except Him, and to parents, good treatment. Whether one or both of them reach old age [while] with you, say not to them [so much as], 'uff,' and do not repel them but speak to them a noble word.

This verse highlights the significance of maintaining a respectful and compassionate relationship with our parents, especially in their old age. It reminds us of the duty to honor and care for them, acknowledging the sacrifices they have made for us throughout their lives. The death of a father, who plays a pivotal role in a person's life, leaves an irreplaceable void and burden on the individual.

Furthermore, the Quran emphasizes the importance of gratitude towards parents. In Surah Luqman, Allah says, (Quran 31:14)

And We have enjoined upon man [care] for his parents. His mother carried him, [increasing her] in weakness upon weakness, and his weaning is in two years. Be grateful to Me and to your parents; to Me is the [final] destination.

This verse highlights the physical and emotional struggles a mother endures in raising her child. It also emphasizes the obligation to express gratitude not only to Allah but also to our parents for their immense efforts in nurturing and raising us. The death of a father intensifies the realization of the blessings and sacrifices he made, leading to a profound sense of loss and grief.

The Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) serves as a reminder to Muslims of the significant impact a father has on their lives. It highlights the emotional and psychological weight that accompanies the loss of a father, as he is not only a source of guidance and support but also a symbol of strength and protection.

The death of a father breaks one's back in the sense that it shatters the foundation of support and stability that a father provides. It leaves the individual feeling vulnerable, overwhelmed, and burdened with the responsibility of carrying on without their father's presence.

This Hadith also serves as a call to action for Muslims to appreciate and cherish their parents while they are still alive. It urges individuals to recognize the value of their parents' presence and to make the most of the time they have together. It encourages Muslims to honor and respect their fathers, seeking their guidance and wisdom while they are still alive.

In conclusion, the Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ),

The death of a father breaks one's back,

highlights the profound impact and emotional weight that the loss of a father carries. It serves as a reminder to Muslims of the importance of honoring and cherishing their parents, as well as the immense void that is left behind upon their passing. May Allah grant us the ability to fulfill our duties towards our parents and grant them the highest ranks in Jannah.

. : . (Readers are advised to verify the sources mentioned above, and to independently research for an accurate understanding of Hadith. Remember, personal research and seeking guidance from scholars are essential in gaining a better insight. Please, do contact us if you find any wrong citations or explanations.)

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