Today's Reminder

July 05, 2022 | Dhuʻl-Hijjah 5, 1443

Living The Quran

Al-Tawbah (Repentance)
Chapter 9: Verse 60

Who to Give Zakah?
"As-Sadaqat (here it means Zakat) are only for the Fuqara and Al-Masakin and those employed to collect the (funds); and to attract the hearts of those who have been inclined (towards Islam); and to free the captives; and for those in debt; and for Allah's Cause, and for the wayfarer; a duty imposed by Allah. And Allah is All-Knower, All-Wise."

The Quran describes eight categories of people who are to receive Zakah. Ahmad Sakr elaborated on these categories:

1. The poor (Fuqara)-this refers to someone who has no income

2. The needy (Masakin)-this is someone who for instance, may have a job, a house and a car, but their income is below the minimum requirement.

3. Employees of the Zakah. This category is sub-divided into the following:

    a. the group of people who are social services workers who go into the community to evaluate who is Faqeer and Miskeen.
    b. those who collect the Zakah money
    c. the accountant of the Zakah money
    d. investors who increase the share of the Zakah
    e. the clerical worker or secretary who puts the files in order
    f. those who will deliver Zakah to the ones who need it
    g. the outside auditor.

4. Sympathizers

These are those people who might enter or who have already entered Islam. Anyone we feel are good friends or ours (non-Muslim or new Muslims) we give them a gift from the Zakah money.

5. To free slaves

Riqab is the term used to describe the group of people who are slaves. The Zakah money is used to free the slaves. Sakr stresses that Islam did not invent slavery, but it gradually abolished it.

6. For the Gharimeen-those who are in debt

Zakah money is used to pay off debts but these people are not living in luxury, they are living a normal life. For example, someone who has gone bankrupt because of job loss and is overloaded with debt.

7. Fee Sabeelillah (for the Cause of Allah)

This can be anything for the love of Allah. Sakr gave the following examples:

    a. for the employment of a Daiyah, Imam, or religious teachers to do Dawa
    b. building Islamic schools
    c. building Muslim clinics and hospitals
    d. providing money to young men who want to marry but cannot afford Mahr
    e. to assist poor travelers
    f. to establish water springs on streets for those walking or travelers
    (please note, these last three things were done by Khalifa Umar ibn Abdul Aziz)
    g. to defend Muslims who are under attack
    h. For television, radio or newspaper project aimed at doing Dawa
    i. to help someone publish a book for Dawa
    j. to pay for the studies of a student..

8. Ibn as Sabeel

This refers to a traveler, for instance who has lost his wallet and has to get back to his home.

Sakr stresses that this has to be verified to see if this person is really telling the truth, since there has been at least one case of a man claiming to be a lost traveler in North America who has stolen thousands from Muslims claiming to be a traveler of this type.

Compiled From:
"Frequently Asked Questions about Zakat" - SoundVision.com

From Issue: 545 [Read original issue]

Understanding The Prophet's Life

Different Capacities

God’s Messenger (peace be upon him) had qualities and was in different positions which required him to act in specific ways or make specific statements. It is, therefore, our duty to be aware of the situation and take it into account when seeking enlightenment to help us solve the multitude of problems that have always troubled many people and caused much confusion. The Companions used to make a clear distinction between the commands of God’s Messenger that ensued from his position as legislator (maqam al-tashri) and those that did not. When they were not sure about a certain matter, they sought clarification about it.

It is related in an authentic tradition that Barirah was the wife of Mughith, a slave, at the time when her masters freed her. When she became mistress of her own destiny by manumission (itq), she divorced her husband because she loathed him. Yet, Mughith, who loved her very much, approached the Messenger of God about this divorce. When the Prophet spoke to her about returning to her divorced husband, Barirah said: “O God’s Apostle! Do you order me to do so?” He said, “No, I only intercede for him.” She said, “I am not in need of him” [Bukhari]. She thus refused to return to her husband, and neither God’s Messenger nor the Companions criticized her for that.

There are twelve different capacities in respect of which statements or actions would ensue from God’s Messenger. They include legislation (tashri), issuing edicts (fatwa), adjudication (qada), political leadership of the state (imarah), guidance (hady), conciliation (sulh), advice to those seeking his opinion (isharah), counselling (nasihah), spiritual uplifting of people (takmil al-nufus), teaching high and lofty truths (talim al-haqaiq al-aliyah), disciplining (tadib) and noninstructive ordinary statements (tajarrud an al-irshad):

1. Legislation (tashri).

The capacity as legislator is the predominant and most distinctive characteristic of God’s Messenger, for that is why God sent him, as indicated in the Qur’an: “And Muhammad is only an Apostle” (3:144). Evidence that the Prophet was invested with the power of legislation is abundant and manifest. One instance of this is his sermon at the farewell pilgrimage (Hajjat al-wada), during which he appointed certain people to repeat what he said so that others could hear his words [Muslim]. Another indication is his statement: “Learn your rituals from me [by seeing me performing them], for I do not know whether I will be performing Hajj after this Hajj of mine,” [Muslim, Abu Dawud] and his saying after concluding the same sermon: “Let those present inform those who are absent.” [Bukhari, Muwatta, Muslim]

..... [to be continued]

Compiled From:
"Treatise on Maqasid Al-Shariah" - Ibn Ashur, pp. 33-35

From Issue: 909 [Read original issue]


Weeping During Recitation

It is an attribute of those with profound knowledge of God, and a distinguishing feature of God's righteous devotees. God Most High said, They fall down upon their faces weeping, and it increases them in humility (Quran 17: 109).

Many hadiths and accounts from the Righteous Forebears have been related concerning this. Among them is from the Prophet, peace be upon him, himself: "Read the Quran and weep. If you do not weep, cause yourself to weep." [Ibn Majah]

Umar ibn al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, prayed the Morning Prayer in congregation and read Surat Yusuf. He wept until his tears flowed over his collarbone.

Imam Abu Hamid al-Ghazali said, "Weeping is recommended while reciting [the Quran] or witnessing [its recitation]." He said, "The way to achieve this is by bringing sadness to mind by pondering the threats and warnings, the covenants and agreements that it contains, and then contemplating one's shortcomings with their regard. If this does not bring to mind sadness and weeping, as it does with elite worshippers, then one should weep from the lack of it, since it is among the greatest of calamities." [Ihy Ulum al-Din]

"Etiquette with the Quran" - Imam al-Nawawi, pg. 45

From Issue: 496 [Read original issue]