Does an apostate mother have the right over her children that they should keep in touch with her and honour her

I am a Muslim man and my mother is a Sikh woman, but she became Muslim when she married my father. After she became Muslim she used to pray regularly, go to the mosque and attend lessons all the time. Then after approximately 13 years, I do not know what happened between them, but he divorced her and she apostatized from Islam and went back to her former religion, unfortunately.

I have tried hard to bring her back to Islam, because I know of the painful punishment for the one who apostatises from Islam, but without success. Now I do not know how to interact with her, because she is my mother and she has rights over me that I must pay attention to, but how can I create a balance in dealing with her? What advice can you offer me?.

Praise be to Allaah.


We ask Allah to bring your mother back to Islam and to grant her a good end.


Your saying “she has rights over me that I must pay attention to” is not correct. If she was a kaafir from the outset, she would have rights over you, but because she has become an apostate from the religion of Allah, her shar‘i rights over you and her Muslim children have been lost.

Al-Shaafa‘i (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
If a person moves from shirk to faith (Islam), then moves from faith to shirk, and is an adult man or woman, he should be asked to repent. If he repents, it will be accepted from him, but if he does not repent, he is to be executed. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And they will never cease fighting you until they turn you back from your religion (Islamic Monotheism) if they can. And whosoever of you turns back from his religion and dies as a disbeliever, then his deeds will be lost in this life and in the Hereafter, and they will be the dwellers of the Fire. They will abide therein forever”

[al-Baqarah 2:217].
Al-Umm, 1/257

The apostate has no sanctity according to sharee ‘ah, because his apostasy is not to be approved of. If he returns to Islam, then he will come under the same rulings as Muslims, but if he persists in his disbelief, he is to be executed. Hence meat slaughtered by him is not permissible, and it is not permissible to marry an apostate woman, and the apostate does not have the rights of upholding ties of kinship, honour and kind treatment; rather he should be shunned and forsaken, except for the purpose of calling him back to Islam (da‘wah) and advising him.

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen was asked:

What is the Islamic ruling in your view on shunning and cutting off ties with my family because of their sin and their not offering obligatory prayers?

He replied:

There is no doubt that family and relatives have rights over a person, even if they are kaafirs, because Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And We have enjoined on man (to be dutiful and good) to his parents. His mother bore him in weakness and hardship upon weakness and hardship, and his weaning is in two years give thanks to Me and to your parents. Unto Me is the final destination”

[Luqmaan 31:14]

“But if they (both) strive with you to make you join in worship with Me others that of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not; but behave with them in the world kindly”

[Luqmaan 31:15].

But these family members who do not pray are to be regarded as apostates from Islam, because the one who does not pray is a kaafir, as is indicated by the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), and the words of the Sahaabah (may Allah be pleased with him). Indeed, some scholars narrated that there was consensus on this point. So if they do not pray, then they are apostates from the religion of Islam and it is not permissible to mix with them, unless it is for the purpose of advising them, if one goes to them and advises them and explains to them the loss and shame that result from this apostasy in this world and the Hereafter, in the hope that they may return to Islam. But if they persist in that, then they have no rights and they must be shunned and forsaken. But I ask Allah to bring these people and others who have been tested with this great test back to Islam so that they will do what Allah has enjoined upon them of prayers and other duties.

It should be noted that the crime and sin of the apostate is greater than that of the one who was originally a kaafir, because the religion of one who is originally a kaafir is allowed even if it is false. But in the case of the apostate, he is not allowed to persist in the religion he adopted, rather he should be enjoined to return to Islam and to do that which omitting it is kufr, and if he does not do that then he should be executed.

Fataawa Noor ‘ala al-Darb, tape 161, side B

So our advice to you is not to despair of your mother being guided and to continue calling her to Islam in the way that is best whilst always offering supplication (du‘aa’) for her. Choose the best times for du‘aa’, such as the last third of the night, and good situations such as prostration during prayer. Remember that she has no rights over you so long as she is still an apostate.

See also the answer to question number 95588

And Allah knows best.

Source : Islam Q&A

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