Is It a Sin To Be Indifferent to Parents, Not Disobeying nor Honoring Them?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

Is it a sin to not disobey your parents but also not honor them? Also, how do we honor our parents? What if we have don’t have much money?

Answer

Thank you for your question. Honoring your parents is easier than you imagine and I pray that you can treat your parents just how you would like to be treated yourself by your children.

Disobedience

First of all, obedience to parents is not unconditional, please see the explanation here:
When May Parents Be Disobeyed, and How?

I would say that being ignored by one’s children is hurtful, so that can potentially be sinful. But, If you are generally being good to them, obeying them in what is reasonable, and providing for them if you are able to when they are in need of it, you are honoring them. You don’t need to worry about it beyond that. Please see the link below about parent’s financial rights:
Fiqh of Financially Supporting one’s Parents and Relatives

Money

The key to serving your parents has nothing to do with money. You should strive to support them if they need it, and if you are able to help, but the amount of money you give them won’t necessarily give you greater honor in the eyes of Allah. A person’s reward lies in the sincerity of their intention, and their intention to be good to them with excellence, whether it is achieved or not. So reconcile what you want to do for your parents first, and then ask Allah to make it a reality. Nothing is lost on Him, Most High. Always treat your parents how you would like to be treated yourself.

Resources

Please consider taking this free course to understand what you owe them, and see the relevant resources below:
The Rights of the Parents: Attaining Honor by Serving One’s Parents
Truth for the Youth – Parents and the Path to Paradise
Rights of Parents
Goodness to Parents – A Reader

Keep this important verse in mind: “For your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And honor your parents. If one or both of them reach old age in your care, never say to them ˹even˺ ‘ugh,’ nor yell at them. Rather, address them respectfully.“ [Quran, 17:23]

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.