Is it permissible to celebrate father’s day?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Father’s Day is of western origin just like Mother’s Day. It is not something that is advised by our religion to remember love of mothers and fathers only one day a year. On the contrary, the religion of Islam gives advice to sons and daughters about their mothers and fathers all the time in the Quran and orders them to act accordingly:

"Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none but Him, and that ye be kind to parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in thy life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honor. And, out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: ‘My Lord! bestow on them thy Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood.’" (al-Isra, 17/23-24).

"And We have enjoined on man (to be good) to his parents: in travail upon travail did his mother bear him, and in years twain was his weaning: (hear the command), ‘Show gratitude to Me and to thy parents’: to Me is (thy final) Goal. But if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration), and follow the way of those who turn to me (in love): in the end the return of you all is to Me, and I will tell you the truth (and meaning) of all that ye did." (Luqman, 31/14-15).

It is necessary to pay great attention to the last part of the verse:

"O man! if they strive to make thee join in worship with Me things of which thou hast no knowledge, obey them not; yet bear them company in this life with justice (and consideration)!"

O Allah! What an awesome mercy and wonderful compassion! What an unbelievable tolerance shown to a mother and father even if they are unbelievers that deny you! What a fineness, respect and love in Your advice to those disrespectful people! The religion of Islam made history accept that it has incomparable virtues with the universal ethical principles it introduced regarding the issue as he did in all issues.   

According to what is written, Father’s Day was first celebrated in the city of Spokane Washington on June 19, 1910. Then, it spread to other states. However, Father’s Day was first celebrated officially in 1924 with the support of Calvin Coolidge, the President of the United States. In 1966, Lyndon Johnson, the President of the US at that time, issued a declaration stating that the third Sunday of every June would be celebrated as Father’s Day.

The Quran repeats those suggestions for his addressees every day, not only one day a year. Is it not possible to remember the idiom "to teach one's grandmother how to suck eggs" here? The Westerners always do it. They sell us the nice things that belonged to us by changing them. We buy it readily just because it comes from the West without asking about the price and the quality. That is one aspect of the issue.  

However, the celebration of such days is not a religious ritual. Therefore, to imitate a ceremony of another religion is not in question here. It is permissible to celebrate such days, which emerge as a universal celebration, unless a deed that is haram and contrary to Islam is committed. It is tolerated and regarded nice by Islam if it really helps people to nurture love and respect to mothers and fathers, and causes the sons and daughters to help their parents.

"Give each other gifts; share love with this occasion."

When we view the issue in the light of the hadith above, if such celebrations take place within legitimate boundaries and if giving each other presents contributes to sharing love and respect among the members of the family, the religion of Islam, the best religion, will not oppose it; on the contrary, it encourages such a nice deed.  

Our principle should be as follows: We should not doubt that Islam will allow all deeds that do not necessitate disobeying Allah and that are useful to people. In Islam, "the things that lead to wajibs are regarded as wajib and the things that lead to harams are regarded as haram. Therefore, a deed that causes people to respect and love parents, which is a command of Allah, is applauded in the name of humanity unless it is used as an excuse for haram deeds like alcohol and gambling.

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