Hadith on Mothers: The Virtue of Honoring Parents

📖Sunan an-Nasa’i 3104
It was narrated from Mu’awiyah bin Jahimah As-Sulami, that Jahimah came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said: “O Messenger of Allah! I want to go out and fight (in Jihad) and I have come to ask your advice.” He said: “Do you have a mother?” He said: “Yes.” He said: “Then stay with her, for Paradise is beneath her feet.

The meaning behind this statement is twofold and reflects the significance of family ties and fulfilling one’s responsibilities. On one hand, it emphasizes the importance of honoring and caring for one’s mother. Islam places a high value on respecting and showing kindness to parents, particularly mothers, who hold a special place in the religion’s teachings. On the other hand, this hadith also conveys that serving and taking care of one’s parents can be a means of attaining Paradise. It highlights the virtue of performing acts of kindness towards parents, which is considered a form of righteous action (good deed) and a means of earning rewards from Allah. Regarding the broader concept of Jihad in Islam, it encompasses various meanings and interpretations. While Jihad is often associated with armed struggle or defensive warfare, it has a broader connotation within the Islamic faith. Jihad, in its comprehensive sense, refers to striving and exerting effort in various aspects of life to uphold and spread goodness, righteousness, and justice.

In Islamic teachings, Jihad can be categorized into two main types:

  1. Greater Jihad (Jihad al-Akbar): This refers to the inner struggle or personal striving to combat one’s own desires, ego, and negative inclinations. It involves self-discipline, self-improvement, and resisting temptations in order to become a better individual and submit to the will of Allah.
  2. Lesser Jihad (Jihad al-Asghar): This refers to the external struggle, often associated with armed defense or fighting in the path of Allah. It can include efforts to defend oneself, protect the oppressed, uphold justice, and resist oppression and aggression.

It’s important to note that Jihad in the context of armed struggle has specific conditions and guidelines in Islam. It is not an open-ended permission for violence or aggression. Islamic teachings emphasize the principles of justice, proportionality, and adherence to rules of engagement in any form of armed conflict.


In conclusion, this hadith highlights the importance of respecting and taking care of one’s parents, particularly mothers. It underscores the value of acts of kindness towards parents as a means to attain Paradise. Additionally, while Jihad can involve armed struggle in certain circumstances, it also encompasses striving for goodness and righteousness in all aspects of life.