Should I Obey My Father or Follow My Lawful Desires?
Firstly, we have to stress that treating parents kindly and gently, especially in their old age, is a religious obligation that is stressed in both the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Referring to this, Allah Almighty says, (And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you be dutiful to your parents…)(Al-Israa‘ 17:23). The Prophet (peace and blessings be on him) said, “One who mistreats his parents cannot hope to enter Paradise” (Ibn Majah).
A Muslim should in no way neglect this command of Allah and such norm of Islam.
Indeed, Islam rightfully acknowledges the rights of parents, and the texts of the Qur’an and the sunnah are the best evidence to that. However, it is forbidden, according to the Qur’an, to obey others than Allah, even one’s parents.
A sincere worshipper keeps to the right path of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and does not quit an order of Allah because of any body. The companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) were obliged to leave their houses, properties and families because they refused to return to the false beliefs of their people. Their examples remain an illumination for those who are sincere in their adherence to the principles and the rules of Islam.
Furthermore, if a person’s parent commands him to engage in an act which is haram or in an act that is against the teachings of Islam, such parent should not be obeyed. Moreover, Allah illustrates to us that we should pay no attention to haram orders of parents and to treat them kindly.
In a nutshell, every Muslim is obliged to observe the teachings of Islam as Allah will ask everyone in the day of reckoning. It is also incumbent on whoever knows or understands the teachings of Islam to enlighten his parents to stay within the boundary of Islam and desist from commanding their children to follow their orders at the expense of violating Allah’s commands.
May Allah guide all of us to what pleases Him