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Friday, 3 July 2015

Ramadan Reading Challenge 2015: Day 14: The People of the Garden


This is another story about a garden owned by some people. Read it in surah Al Qalam (68:17-33) of the Qur'an.

Verily, We have tried them as We tried the people of the garden, when they swore to pluck the fruits of the (garden) in the morning, 

Without saying: Insha' Allah (If Allah wills). 

Then there passed by on the (garden) a visitation (fire) from your Lord at night and burnt it while they were asleep. 

So the (garden) became black by the morning, like a pitch dark night (in complete ruins). 

Then they called out one to another as soon as the morning broke. 

Saying: "Go to your tilth in the morning, if you would pluck the fruits." 

So they departed, conversing in secret low tones (saying): 

"No Miskin (poor man) shall enter upon you into it today." 

And they went in the morning with strong intention, thinking that they have power (to prevent the poor taking anything of the fruits therefrom). 

But when they saw the (garden), they said: "Verily, we have gone astray." 

(Then they said): "Nay! Indeed we are deprived of (the fruits)!" 

The best among them said: "Did I not tell you: why say you not: Insha' Allah (If Allah wills)." 

They said: "Glory to Our Lord! Verily, we have been Zalimun (wrong-doers)." 

Then they turned one against another, blaming. 

They said: "Woe to us! Verily, we were Taghun (transgressors and disobedient) 

We hope that our Lord will give us in exchange a better (garden) than this. Truly, we turn to our Lord (wishing for good that He may forgive our sins and reward us in the Hereafter). 

Such is the punishment (in this life), but truly, the punishment of the Hereafter is greater if they but knew.

You might like to read Ibn Kathir's commentary in Stories of the Qur'an.

Lesson and Activity

Today's lesson could focus on saying "If Allah wills" (insha Allah). Teach your child that when she intends to do something she needs to say "insha Allah". Don't be like the people of the garden who had intended to pick the fruits from their garden but didn't say insha Allah. As a result, they couldn't pick from it as Allah had sent a fire to destroy it.
Download this to colour in and put on your wall as a reminder
Another lesson is the importance of giving charity. The people of the garden didn't want the poor people to know that they were going to pick the fruits because they didn't want to give away any. They were selfish and stingy so Allah punished them by not letting them have any of the fruits.

To encourage your children to give in charity, make a money box to collect coins every day. Get a glass jar and make a slot in the lid. Decorate the jar and you can put the word 'Charity', 'Sadaqah' or 'Donations' on it. When the jar is full, take it your local charity organisation and have your child give it.

These are just a few ideas for lessons. If you have any others then feel free to do them and share.

Comments Required

There are so many other lessons to learn. Can you think of any others? I'd love to hear them. Please write in the comment below.

At the end of this Ramadan Reading Challenge, if you or your children have participated then you will get a prize (not sure what yet - will keep you updated). To be eligible, please leave a comment on what lesson you have learnt from the reading of the story and include any activities that you did to extend it. Just a line or two would be fine (so that I can contact you).

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