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: Any suggestions for wajibat and zakat? I dont know whom and where I should be paying. The reason is, I don`t trust no one but myself..

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)

 

 

One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Any suggestions for wajibat and zakat?

I dont know whom and where I should be paying. The reason is, I don't trust no one but myself..

 

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ANSWER:

 

What does Wajibat and Zakat mean?

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and who-ever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.

 

Zakat is payable in charity, in the way of Allah, whereby He purifies the rest of the money left with us ... this is basically a poor-tax. "Zakka" literally means to purify, and by paying the zakat, Allah actually blesses and purifies the money that is left with us. Zakat is an obligation and duty for every believer who believes in Allah and the Last Day. Its importance in Islam can be noted from the fact that Zakat is universally considered as one of the five pillars of Islam.

 

The Quran does not specify the actual percentage to be paid. The Prophet (saws) gave the details of the percentage of the Zakat to be paid. For example, the farmer is to pay 10% of the produce if the land is naturally irrigated by rain. But the farmer has to pay only 5% if the land is irrigated by other means of irrigation like wells, rivers, tributaries, etc. There is different percentage for various things, but the standard for today, and this is undisputed in any faction of Islam, is 2.5%. This 2.5% zakat is to be paid on the net worth of an individual after that amount has been with you for one full year. The property that you live in, the car that you drive, the jewelry that your wife wears (1-set), and anything else that is in constant use, does not have zakat obligatory on it. Zakat is due only on the extra wealth that one has accumulated, minus the debts.

 

Regarding the other forms of collections by the leaders of our sect of Dawoodi Bohra community, there is absolutely no evidence for it in the Quran or the traditions of the Prophet (saws). Zakaat (poor-tax) is THE ONLY tax obligatory on every believer in Islam. Whatever one spends above the fixed 2.5% of ones wealth, will be termed Sadaqa (voluntary charity), if it is spent voluntarily and for the Pleasure of Allah Alone.


All the other forms of obligatory collections in the Dawoodi Bohra community in the name of Islam, like waajebaat, khums, sabeel, etc. have nothing to do with the collection of Zakaat. These unscrupulous leaders give fancy names to the money they demand from their followers!!! First they called it Zakat, then wajebaat, then Khums, and what not, and now they collect all of them as an obligatory tax! They sell the words of Allah to gain a few dollars in this world for themselves!!!

 

Allah says about these kinds of people in Surah Baqarah aayat 174: "Indeed those, who conceal the commands that Allah has sent down in His book and barter them away for paltry worldly gains, fill their bellies with Fire!! Allah will not speak to them on the Day of Resurrection, nor will He regard them as pure, and there is a painful torment for them".

 

During the time of the Prophet (saws) the zakaat amount used to be collected by the Prophet (saws) and deposited in the national treasury (bait-ul-maal), and distributed to the poor and needy and the general welfare of the muslims. There was a system of transparency in the distribution of zakat money, so much so, that anybody was allowed to ask the authorities where the money was being spent. Years later, after the death of the Prophet (saws), the unscrupulous leaders collected the zakat and spent/distributed it accordingly to their whims and fancies, without any transparency, which is unfortunately also prevalent today in many sects of Islam. The best way to distribute zakat today, if indeed ones intention is to purify his wealth and earn the pleasure of Allah, is to do it individually, according to the directions of the Holy Quran.

 

The way to distribute Zakat is given in the Holy Quran Chapter 9 Surah Taubah verse 60: Zakat Collections are for the needy, and the indigent, and for those who are employed to collect them, and for those whose hearts are to be won over, and for the ransoming of slaves, and for helping the debtors, and the way of Allah, and for the hospitality of the way-farers. This is an obligatory duty (for the believers) from Allah. And Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise.

 

In other aayats of the Holy Quran, it mentions that zakat money can also be paid to near family members who are poor, the orphans, etc. Actually, Zakat can be spent in any thing which classifies as the Way of Allah as long as the sole intention is to pay the Zakat and purify your wealth and thus gain the pleasure of Allah Subhanah. The only place you cannot spend Zakat money is to build a mosque, which has to be built with non-zakat and purified money.

 

Please also note here that the Prophet (saws) made the zakat and sadaqa money haraam for himself and his family. Once his (saws) grandson Hadrat Hasan bin Ali picked up a date from the street and wanted to eat and the Prophet (saws) took the date out of Hadrat Hasan's hand and told him not to eat as it might be from sadaqa, as Sadaqa and Zakat were haraam for himself and his family!!!

 

If you read the Quran, every prophet of Allah who came, clearly said that they do not ask the people for any ajr (reward) for their message. Their ajr (reward) was with Allah alone. Our Prophet Mohamed (saws) did not take anything from the zakat and sadaqa money, and proclaimed it haraam on himself and his family, so that the people would realize that the Prophet (saws) did not even take a penny for his services. This was the high moral character of our Prophet (saws) and his family (may Allah bless them all).

 

One of Prophets (saws) wives says in a tradition, that even after the Prophet (saws) had established an Islamic government in Medina and he (saws) was the undisputed leader of all the muslims, there were never three days in a row, that the "fire-wood for food" was burnt in his (saws) household!! She further narrated that she could not remember three days in a row, where they had slept with a stomachful of food!!!

 

Such was the state of the greatest leader and his blessed household, that ever lived. Subhan Allah!!! Compare that to the leaders of the muslims today!!!! What an excellent example we have in the Prophet of Allah, and how short we have fallen in emulating him!!!


May Allah give us the wisdom to recognize the unscrupulous leaders and give us the courage to avoid paying them what is due to Allah Subhanah. May Allah give us the wisdom and guidance to read and understand the words of Allah, the Al Quran. May Allah guide you and us all to the Siraat al Mustaqeem (Straight Path), that leads to His Mercy and Forgiveness, and keep us far away from all the other paths, each of which lead to the Fire of Hell. Ameen.

 

Allah Alone knows Best, and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

May Allah keep you and your families and all of us in His Mercy and Protection.

 

May Allah guide you and us all to the Siraat al-Mustaqeem

 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

Your brother and well wisher in Islam,

 

 

Burhan

 

 

 

 


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