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the Message Continues ... 11/101




Newsletter for January 2010


Article 1 - Article 2 - Article 3 - Article 4 - Article 5 - Article 6 - Article 7 - Article 8 - Article 9 - Article 10 - Article 11 - Article 12




Dr. Abidullah Ghazi
Executive Director
IQRA’ International Educational Foundation

Khajah Abdullah Ansari (1006-1088 CE), the distinguished descendent of the noble Abu Ayyub al-Ansari and a prominent scholar and Sufi had written a voluminous Persian-language commentary entitled Kashf ul-Asrâr (Revelation of The Secrets), an spiritual reading of the sacred Word of Allah. This work is regarded as a masterpiece of Persian literature and religious scholarship.

In discussing the verses on infâq (selfless giving) in Sűrah al-Baqarah, he came up with an insight on the concept of charity and it spiritual implications. The venerable Khajah says that The Lord of Creation gives weightiness to infâq by seven unique ways to encourage believers to be ever generous. For Muslims charity is always important, but in Ramadan it becomes all the more necessary, as its reward is increased and demands from needy individuals and community related projects increase. Here we'll describe Khajah Ansari’s classification of the Qur’anic presentation of the theme of charity (Infaq) and in several styles that Allah tells us of its importance.

The classifications are from Khajah Ansari’s insight, the translations of the ayât are from Yusuf Ali and comments are mine. The wisdom to be inspired, draw lessons from and act upon the commandants would be entirely yours.

1. As a commandment (Amr):
Allah enjoins all believers to give charity (infâq, sadaqah, zakat and gifts). While Zakat is obligatory (fard) and a pillar of Islam, charity in every form and at every time is promoted. In this respect his commandment to give is repeated several times and is emphatic and clear:

“O you who believe! Spend out of (the bounties) We have provided for you before the day comes when no bargaining (will avail) nor friendship nor intercession.
Those who reject faith they are the wrong-doers.”
(al-Baqarah 2:254)

2. As a Special Mercy (Lutf):
Charity is an act which Allah loves. Through charity we help the needy, poor and destitute and support community building efforts. Allah asks us to give out of what he has bestowed upon us but he prefers to call it a Qard Hasanah, Goodly Loan that He promises to return this loan with abundant rewards:

“Who is he that will loan to Allah a beautiful loan which Allah will double unto his credit and multiply many times?  It is Allah that gives (you) want or plenty and
to Him shall be your return.”
(al-Baqarah 2:245)

3. As a Promise (Wa’dah):

Allah promises abundant remuneration for our charities. His rewards cannot be measured or even understand but for our limited knowledge and capability of calculating of His blessings he puts that in numbers. The numbers proliferate in the blessed month of Ramadan manifold:

“The parable of those who spend their substance in the way of Allah is that of a grain of corn: it grows seven ears and each ear has a hundred grains.  Allah gives manifold increase to whom He pleases; and Allah cares for all and He knows all things.”
(al-Baqarah 2:261)

4. As an Emphasis (Wa`id)
Giving charity is an act of Goodness (Al-Birr); however, it also is an instrument to achieve righteousness. Our objective in life is to attain what is Good, (Al-Birr) for us, for our families and loved ones, our communities and our humanity. However, without infaq there is no acceptance of any act of Goodness:

“By no means shall you attain righteousness (Al-Birr) unless you give (freely) of that which you love; and whatever you give in charity (Khair), Allah knows it well.”
(Al `Imran 3:92)

5. As a Good Advice (Pand, Nasihah)
In His benevolence Allah swt advises us against the pitfalls that would stop us from giving. The Satan is an avowed enemy who does not want us to bother with giving:

“The Evil One threatens you with poverty and bids you to conduct unseemly acts.
Allah promises you His forgiveness and bounties and Allah cares for all and
He knows all things.”
(Al Imran 2:268)

6. As a Warning (Tahdid)
While, infaq brings immeasurable benefit to the giver, not giving, stinginess (bukhl) results in Divine wrath and chastisement. The anger of our Rabb (Lord) can lead to our spiritual, moral and financial ruin, a state for which we ourselves would be responsible:

“And spend of your substance in the cause of Allah and make not your own hands contribute to your destruction but do good; for Allah loves those who do good.”
(al-Baqarah 2:195)
7. As a Reality (Tahqiq)
When we give, we may think that we are doing a favor to Allah (na’dhu bi-Allah). Allah reminds us the fact, though Allah in His infinite kindness calls it Goodly Loan it in fact, our entire giving is a minimum payment for all the gifts that Allah swt has bestowed upon us. Allah is Al-Ghani (Not in need) and by giving we do not fulfill any of His needs, nor we do a favor to Him but we are doing favor to ourselves. It is our own need that we give and we must do so humbly and sincerely:

“Behold, you are those invited to spend (of your substance) in the way of Allah: but among you are some that are miserly.  But any who miserly are so at the expense of their own souls.  But Allah is free of all wants, and it is you that are needy.  If you turn back (from the Path), He will substitute in your stead another people;
then they would not be like you!”
(Muhammad 47:38)







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