EARNING LIVELIHOOD

Almighty Allah sent provisions for men and animals along with their creation in this world. But for His infinite mercy, we would not have at all breathed for a single moment. The Almighty Providence placed everything in this world, which can supply food to animals for their upkeep. The Holy Quraan says: “He provides you from where you do not know.” (65:3)

DIGNITY OF MANUAL LABOUR

All the blessed Prophets of Allah (alaihimus salaam) worked with their own hands for livelihood, because there is no better food than that acquired by one’s manual labour.

Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra (radi Allahu anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: Whoso gives alms of a handful of dates from lawful earnings, verily Allah accepts it with great dignity. Then, He fosters it for its owner just as one of you fosters his chickens, till they become huge like mountains. (Agreed)

Sayyiduna Rafe’ Bin Khadij (radi Allahu anhu) reported that the Glorious Prophet of Allah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: Price of a dog is impure, earning of a prostitute is impure, and earning of a cupper is impure. (Muslim)

Sayyiduna Jaabir (radi Allahu anhu) reported that Allah’s Messenger (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: No flesh, which has grown out of unlawful things, has got better claim to Hell Fire.(Darimi) This means that the flesh nourished by unlawful food shall enter Paradise after suffering in Hell for sometime. It does not mean that it will never be able to enter Paradise.

Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra (radi Allahu anhu) reported that the Apostle of Allah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: Whoso seeks the world in a lawful manner abstaining from begging and striving for his family and being sympathetic to his neighbour, he will meet the Almighty Allah (Azzawajal) on the Resurrection Day while his face will be like the moon in full-moon lit night, and whoso seeks the world in a lawful manner, seeking wealth boastfully out of show, he will meet the Almighty Allah (Azzwajal) while He would be wrathful to him. (Bay’haqi)

AMASSING OF WEALTH

The Holy Quraan says: Those who hoard up gold and silver and do not spend it in Allah’s way, announce to them a painful punishment. A day will certainly come when these shall be heated up in the fire of hell and their foreheads, sides and backs shall be branded with them. They will be told: This is what you have stored up for yourselves; taste, then, what you have hoarded. (9:34-36) It is abominable to hoard up wealth on the part of a true God-fearing man, because hoarding implies a little want of faith in Almighty Allah  as the Great Giver of Sustenance. The Holy Quraan says: Will you distribute the mercy of your Lord? We distribute among them their livelihood in the life of this world. (43: 32)

Sayyiduna Abu Hurayra (radi Allahu anhu) reported that the Holy Prophet of Islam (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) used to store up nothing for tomorrow. (Tirmidi)

Sayyiduna Ammar Bin Yassar (radi Allahu anhu) reported that the Messenger of Allah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: Food, bread and meat were sent down from Heaven, and they were ordered neither to waste; but they wasted and stored up for tomorrow. So they were metamorphosed into apes and swines. (Tirmidi)

There is nothing wrong from the Islamic point of view in being rich, provided that one makes the right use of one’s riches. Furthermore, to be rich is not synonymous with the hoarding of money, whether it is for the modern currency type or silver and gold. The two are different. What does, then, constitute hoarding? According to eminent scholars and commentators of the Holy Quraan, the payment of Zakaah makes all the difference. If one pays the Zakaah of his wealth on time, this payment serves as purification of the money and ensures that he is not included among those mentioned in the verse.

Imam Bukhari (alaihir rahmah) relates on the authority of Sayyiduna Abdullah Ibn-e-Omar (radi Allahu anhuma) that this warning was applicable before legislation of Zakaah. When Zakaah was made a duty, Allah made it serve as purification of money. Sayyiduna Abdullah Ibn-e-Omar (radi Allahu anhuma) is further reported to have said: The wealth from which Zakaah is paid is not hoarded, even if it is stored under seven layers of earth. What is in a person’s hands is hoarded if he does not pay Zakaah for it.

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