Exhorting children to pray

Q: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: Command your children to pray when they are seven years old, and beat them for (neglecting) it when they are ten years old; and separate them in bed at the time of sleep. Do the "seven years" start upon the end of the sixth year or upon the end of the seventh year and the beginning of the eighth year?


A: When a child reaches the age of seven, the guardian should command them to perform Salah in order to get them used to it. There is a Hadith reported by Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and Al-Hakim where the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Command your children to perform Salah when they are seven years old, beat them if they neglect it when they are ten years, and separate them in bed at the time of sleep. It is clear that the intended meaning is when they finish their seventh year. (Part No. 6; Page No. 27) May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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