As Muslims, there is no doubt that we are responsible for standing united with the poor. This is because Allah asks us to do so. When Allah asks to do something, this means that this matter is very useful for the society and the members of the society. Zakah is one of the most important pillars of Islam after the prayer. And Allah commands Muslims to pay the Zakah as perform prayers
"And perform As-Salah and give Zakah, and bow down along with those who bow down" Surah Al-Baqara(2:43)
The Concept of Zakah:
Zakah is an Arabic word that literary means: growth, increase, blessing, praise, and goodness. As an act in Islam, Zakah is the method of donating money to the poor in order to make an offer to Allah. Such an act is a reflection of the meaning itself. Donating money to poor people has a good effect not only on the donor himself but on the whole the society and the members of society as well.
Zakah Benefits on the society members:
Not all of us know Zakah and it’s benefits. There are many things that Zakah can benefit individuals within society, which are not limited to the rich only or to the poor only, but to both. There are the most common benefits of Zakah:
- Zakah helps the donor to get rid of Stinginess and miserliness.
- Zakah helps the person’s heart, who receives the donation, to become empty of hatred and envy.
- It also helps the donor to be closer to Allah by spending much money for His sake.
- Zakah also plays an important role in building a strong relationship between the poor and the rich.
Moreover, it is very clear in the Quran that Zakah and charity must be cut from who’s capable and the amount of money is an estimated share that must be paid to those who deserve it.
"Zakah expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed to collect [zakah] and for bringing hearts together [for Islam] and for freeing captives [or slaves] and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah and for the [stranded] traveler - an obligation [imposed] by Allah" Suraht Al-Tawba (9:60).
The common benefits of Zakah on the whole society
- Zakah helps to fix the loving of The Islamic Religion in the hearts of the believers.
- Zakah also helps to Protect Muslims from the enemies of Islam, as there is huge money spent for jihad in the cause of Allah.
- It also helps by creating a new style of Equality between the rich and the poor and makes the whole people have money to spend. If there is not something called zakah, only the rich will have money and the poor will not have money to spend. Also, it is a new shape of stopping envy between rich people and the poor.
Sadaqa or Charity
The other matter related to Zakah is charity. There are many similar points, which all of Zakah and charity have them, but also there are different points. You can say that charity is money, food, clothes, or anything the rich people donate to needy people. This is completely similar to Zakah, but charity does not have rules as Zakah.
"Of their goods and money, take alms, that so thou mightest purify and sanctify them; and pray on their behalf. Verily thy prayers are a source of security for them: And Allah is One Who heareth and knoweth" Suraht Al-Tawba (9:103)
Types of Charity
- There are many types of charity. All of them are for the sake of Allah. The first type of charity is money. You can donate for the sake of the poor people by giving them any amount of money to make their spirit empty of envy.
- The second type of charity is the food. You can donate also any amount of food for the sake of the poor for example, if you have much rice, what about giving the rich people some of them! It seems so good and you will receive the reward from Allah.
- The third type of charity is moral charities. For example, when you smile when you meet any person, this considered one of the types of charity. Not that only, but also when you Praise Allah, you will get the reward also for doing that.
All these previous matters mentioned are the most common types of charity. We wanted to know also the benefits of charity as we know the benefits of Zakah.
There is lots of Hadith tell about the importance of charity. The messenger of Allah Mohammed (PBUH) said that Charity or as known as Sadaqa :
“Heal your Patients with Sadaqa”
Benefits of Charity
- The man who gives this charity to the poor will shelter in its shadow on Judgment Day.
- There is also a door in Heaven through which people who give alms to the poor enter, even if only a little.
- Charity can also be a cure for anyone who suffers from any illness. Our noble Messenger is the one who told us that.
After mentioning all these previous benefits for the Zakah and the charity. You can start now donating money for the poor to get the reward from Allah. You can also gain more goods and erase bad deeds by giving charity to the needy, but do not forget that Zakah is an obligation. Actually, by doing Zakah and charity in the right way, there won’t be any poverty left in the country as what happened during the ruling period of Prince Omar bin Abdul Aziz in the Islamic state.