Bilal Phillips: Advice for Educating the Muslim Child
This morning I listened to this lecture while preparing breakfast. I thought the video was useful – especially for those of us who are constantly bombarded with “why do you homeschool?” “You shouldn’t homeschool!” “Your children need to be socialized!” “Your children will never succeed!” and all the other horror stories that people equate with homeschooling.
I don’t know if you get that reaction a lot – sometimes not so nicely worded, either. I get that a lot from people when I go to the masjid (not really too much from non-Muslims). In fact, I have met many non-Muslims that are highly supportive of homeschooling, masha’Allah – even some who homeschooled their children when it just wasn’t cool to do so. I have gotten some good advice and suggestions from many of these people. For those non-Muslims who do not accept homeschooling – they usually say “oh” and then leave it at that – they don’t attack.
However, whenever I tell another Muslim that I homeschool (whether in my own community or when we are traveling) – they feel a strong need to attack my decision to homeschool. Strange, isn’t it? This doesn’t happen all the time- but it does happen more often than I would like. Why do complete Muslim strangers (friends, insha’Allah – know better) take the time (quite a bit of time, to tell you the truth) to tell you the many ways of how homeschooling is a bad thing for your children? I find that so odd, subhan’Allah – but I don’t mind being strange anymore – alhumdulilah. If you want, we can be “strange” together. There’s nothing like a little bit of company, know what I mean?
I don’t exactly know why, either – but people who I have met who homeschool are often more understanding and respectful to those who choose not to homeschool (even if they strongly do not agree with them – even to those people who send their kids to public school). However, whenever I meet someone who chooses not to homeschool – they always seem to think they need to fight you about the reasons you should not homeschool (some of their reasons are just plain crazy, I might add).
I’m not here to tell anyone what to do – if you don’t want to homeschool – don’t. No one can force you to do something you can’t or don’t want to do. However, please treat me with the same respect – and stop trying to support your own choices by trashing mine. Everyone is different – everyone has different needs and goals in life – I respect you and your decisions – please respect mine, insha’Allah.
Anyway, this lecture not only talks about public school and Islamic schools, but it also talks about Islamic education in general. It doesn’t really touch upon homeschooling as an option (at least, not exactly) – however, it has good criteria and ideas for educating the Muslim child that should help us find ways to improve our homeschooling experience and the education of our children as well, insha’Allah.
So, I thought I’d share the following advice by Bilal Phillips:
Here is another lecture series by Bilal Phillips talking about Islamic Education:
I hope you find these lectures as informational and inspiring as I did, insha’Allah.
Sumayyah Umm SAA