Hadith 3. Pillars of Islam Part C

On the authority of Abee `Abd ir-Rahmaan `Abdullaah, the son of `Umar ibn al-Khattab (radiAllaahu ‘anhumaa), who said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam) say:

Islaam has been built on five [pillars]: testifying that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allaah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah,establishing the salaah (prayer), paying the zakaah (obligatory charity), making the Hajj (pilgrimage) to the House, and fasting in Ramadaan.

Related by Bukhari and Muslim

Brief Commentary:

  • Zakah linguistically means:
    • To purify
    • To grow
    • To bless
  • The Shar’i (Islamic) meaning is: To give a certain amount of wealth from a certain category of wealth to a certain group of people at a certain time of year
  • From the above definition, we learn that zakah is not always 2.5%, as sometimes it can even be 10%, depending on what you are giving zakah from
  • If we don’t pay zakah, then had it not been for the animals, we would be prevented from rain
  • Importance of zakah:
    • Usually listed with Salah in the Qur’an
    • Reason for Abu Bakr to wage war on the Arab tribes
    • Can be a reason for Allah withholding rainfall from us if we leave it
    • Can be a source of punishment for us in the hereafter if we leave it
  • Why we give zakah
    • It is a test for those who claim to love Allah, as you are parting with what you love (wealth) for what you love more (Allah)
    • To be free from the destructive characteristic of miserliness
    • To thank Allah for His blessings
  • Benefits of giving zakah
    • It frees oneself from miserliness which Allah ordered us to stay away from. [Al-hashr, 59:9]
    • It refines your character
    • It increases your wealth. [Saba’, 34: 39]
    • It helps you to strive against your own nafs (soul)
    • It shows that Islam is not an individualistic faith
    • It helps in tasting the sweetness of Iman
  • It is haram to do hajj and fulfil all its requirements, but think you haven’t been forgiven
  • Benefits of hajj:
    • You have all of your sins forgiven
    • Entails all the five pillars of Islam
    • You glorify and manifest the emblems of Allah
    • Helps a person in submitting to Allah
    • Teaches us that Allah’s wisdom and knowledge is greater than ours
  • The linguistic meaning of fasting is to restrain oneself from something
  • The shar’i (Islamic) meaning of fasting is refraining from food, drink, and sexual intercourse from dawn until sunset
  • Fasting can be split into three levels
    • General fasting: abstaining from food, drink, and sexual intercourse
    • Special fasting: general fasting + keeping the  tongue, eyesight, hands, feet, hearing and all other limbs away from sins
    • Extra special fasting: special fasting + restraining the heart from lowly ambitions, thoughts that move one away from Allah, and freeing it from anything other than Allah
  • Fasting helps in attaining piety because we train ourselves from refraining from good things, so it will be easier to refrain from bad things
  • When we break our fast, we are happy because we can eat, and because the reward of fasting has no limits
  • Benefits of fasting:
    • Helps in attaining piety
    • Decreases one’s desires
    • Has unlimited reward
    • Reward can never be taken away from us

Benefits and action points:

  • Reflect upon the reasons on why we give zakah and ensure you include them in your intention when you give zakah or sadaqah
  • Study the fiqh of zakah and understand when, how much and from what wealth you must give zakah
  • Manners when giving zakah/sadaqah
    • To be aware with what is intended behind the zakah or sadaqah itself
    • Give your wealth in secret
    • Do not spoil your wealth. [Al-baqarah, 2:264]
    • Belittle what you give
    • Choose the most halal, best, and most beloved wealth to you to give to charity
    • Choose the best people to give the charity to
  • How to protect oneself from greed:
    • Say: “اللهم إني أعوذ بك من البخل” (Oh Allah, I seek refuge in you from miserliness)
    • Believe in divine destiny
    • Look at those who are below us
  • Intend to do hajj at the earliest opportunity and ensure you do so
  • Try to attain the extra special level of fasting as defined above
  • Increase in voluntary fasts, especially Mondays and Thursdays, and at least 3 days of the month, preferably being the white days, which are the 13th, 14th and 15th of the Hijri month
  • Sunnah actions when fasting:
    • Have suhoor and have it late
    • Break your fast early
    • Break your fast with dates
    • Be generous in Ramadhan
    • Read the Qur’an
    • Do i’tikaf in the Masjid
    • Increase in righteous actions especially in the last ten nights of Ramadhan

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