Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2009 9:47 pm Post subject: Take from the properties of your followers a sadaqa which wi
Pardesi, You asked for an input....
We are always at liberty to fool ourselves as we have been given the free will to decide between what is right and wrong....the ayah quoted by Virani is out of context as the expression "beyond" could also imply generously i.e. to try and spend in the way of God, more than what one can "afford"...
"..And let not those who possess dignity and ease among you swear not to give to the near of kin and to the needy, and to fugitives for the cause of Allah. Let them forgive and show indulgence. Yearn ye not that Allah may forgive you ? Allah is Forgiving, Merciful (Sura Nur)..."
The alms are only for the poor and the needy, and those who collect them, and those whose hearts are to be reconciled, ... and for the cause of Allah, and (for) the wayfarer; a duty imposed by Allah. Allah is Knower, Wise. ...nowhere has He said that one should first remove the "expenses" and then use this as an excuse not to pay....
" Take from the properties of your followers a sadaqa which will purify them..." . God has made it obligatory for all Muslims to pay Zakat and hand it over to the Prophet or his descendants...........
"bear in mind that of what you earn the fifth part belongs to God, the Prophet, his relatives, the orphans, the poor and the way-farers.."...........now fifth part means 20% and here people are arguing about a lesser amount....
" O Momins ! do not decieve God or the Prophet and do not mis-appropriate the "Amanat" in general. You know the
consequences...".........God says: " woe to the infidels who do not pay the zakat.."
When one gives back the "Amanat" he or she is not giving any of his or her own money save what actually belongs to God Himself and so It is clear that those who do not follow the above direction have allowed their "Passion" to be their god and have thus breached their covenant with God
Dasond is given nett of taxes but excluding premiums for any personal life Insurance policies and certainly before applying any "expenses".
Momins are distinguished from the hypocrites by only their love for Ali of the time and age.
The Prophet has exhorted his followers to love Ali and Allah has enjoined it as a duty on moslems in general...."SAY: I do not ask you to pay me for the guidance any reward excepting your love for my Kith & Kin..."
"And surely you will be tested in yourself and in your possessions..."
Imam Abu Jafar Mohamed Baqir (as) explained that "it is the duty of every momin to love us for we are the Ahl al Bayt and the kith and kin of Muhamad ..."
Imam Baqir then said..."he who loves us will rise with us on the Day of Judgment..." and then he added..." religion is nothing but love" !....and he then summed it up by saying...
" HE made you love your faith and adorned it in your hearts..."
Hazrat Ali (as) said..." The virtue is to love us....and the vice is to hate us..."
Now this love cannot be prompted by worldly considerations for it then ceases with the "loss" of such consideration...and so this love must sustain whether one is "prosperous" or in adverse situation for what is done for the sake of God cannot be affected by any vicissitudes of this life or change in circumstances...
Hazrat Ali said..."if I strike a blow in the nose of a momin he will never hate me..." then he said..."if I were to shower gold and silver on a hypocrite, he will never love me..."
Thus who love the Imams must be sincere and pay them their dues...it is your duty to love with sincerity and return to him the "amanat" with honesty and support him and never forsake him or disobey him at the behest of a Munafiqun.
God commands you to pay back the "amanat" to their owners..." O ! momins do not commit breach of trust in your dealings with Allah and HIS Prophet and do not abuse this trust in the matter of "amanats' knowingly...."
The Prophet says..."It is your duty to return the amanat ! He who deceives us is disowned by us..."
Allah, the Prophet and the Imams has ordered us in unequivocal terms to return the "deposits to their owners" - in this way they guard their faith and purify their souls. If you breach then you bring disgrace upon yourselves, your religion and your reputation.
Those who deceive the Imams have deceived the Prophet and Allah too.
He who is treacherous to the Imams is treacherous to Allah and HIS Prophet !
He who pays the Imams their "amanat" pays God HIS "amanat" - breach of trust is a grave sin !
There are momins who materially are at the lowest rung of the ladder in life and yet they are very particular about the return of "amanat" in spite of their extreme poverty - what then should be the conduct of those with knowledge and who are doing well?
Thanks Znan for opening up a separate thread. Dasond/Zakat in my opinion is the most misunderstood topic among all people. I mean muslim communities. It is a test among other things for us. We are materially so attached to money or our possessions that sometimes our mind tells us to do as less as possible. Like our friend shiraz.virani explained his understanding and practice about Dasond/Zakat which is totally not in line with Ismaili principles.
You are absolutely right that it is an amanat from Allah. A sustainance that he has promised to every believing and non-believing people. In every major religion you find the 10% in the way of Allah/God/Bhagwan/Yashua or whatever they may call Him. It is also very clear in Islam as it is broken down into Zakat, Ushr, Khums, Sadaqat, Khairat, etc. Since we are all muslims here let us talk about this in Islamic terms.
The amount of Zakat is set at 2.5% in Islam and muslims pay that once a year on whatever they possess at the end of the year taking into consideration exceptions allowed to them. Then there is Khums which is 1/5th (20%) of the value of Maal-e-Ghanima/Spoils of war/Gains and Profits on certain items.
Ushr is payable at 5% on some land produce and 10% on certain other kind of land produce. I quote from one of the Islamic websites:
The ushr and Zakat ordinance (1980) empowers the Government in Pakistan to collect Ushr on compulsory basis from every land owner, grantee, allottee, lessee, leaseholder or landholder (other than a person excluded from the definition of Sahib-i-Nisab) at the rate of 5 per cent of his share of the produce as on the valuation date, in irrigated lands and 10 per cent of the produce in rainfed areas. Secondly, ushr payable is realizable compulsorily and has to be credited to the local zakat and ushr fund.
Then there is Kahiraat and Sadaqat which I believe have no limit and is left upon an individual according to his/her ability and wish.
In Ismaili tariqa we have bundled everything into one (for convenience sake I believe) - 10% Dasond - whether you call it Ushr, Khums or Alms. We have also added 2.5% (Zakat?) for the Pir and is totally in line with what Allah says in the Quran. Since we Ismailis have both Imam and the Pir in the same office we pay it to a central authority as 12.5% of our income after taxes.
Shiraz.virani raised a question as to why then we don't pay dasond on taxes. Well as far as taxes is concerned - it is governed by the law of the land we live in. In some countries there is no tax. In others your taxes according to the law are taken out with every paycheck and we do not have no say over it. So it is not the money you get in your hand. If at the end of the year you have paid more than your share of taxes you get that back after filing a tax return. Then it becomes additional income and you pay your dasond on that part when you receive your money. I hope this is clear to Shiraz.
Arshad posted something in the other thread quoting an ayah from the Quran about spending whatever is in excess. It is debatable as to whether it means whatever we want from our excess wealth or whatever is in excess. Different scholars have interpreted or derived different meaning. The ayah Arshad quoted, in my opinion speaks of spending in terms of jihad as the preceeding ayat speaks of jihad (striving in the cause of Allah).
The bottom line is that religious dues are paid to satisfy Islamic law and in hope of receiving Allahs blessing in terms of purification (Zakah) and abundance (Barakat). The more He gives us, the more we spend in His way. The idea of paying Zakat on whatever is left after spending our income on ourselves is not correct. One could live lavishly and spend more than minimum required to get by and then pay a measly sum does not serve the very purpose. But then that is Ismaili understanding.
Also I dont believe what shiraz.virani said in the other thread that some bigshots make a big show when they pay dasond. I have never seen anyone in my life how much they paid. It is always kept in high secrecy. Even the official who receives it does not know how much it is so I don't see how shiraz.virani knows they make a show of it. It may be true in the case of donations though because it is kept on record and people could find out how much a person paid.
Our Holy Pirs and Imams have removed all confusions about paying dasond..please show me where in the quran does it say that one should only give 2.5% sadaqa?...overtime the caliphs and the Jurists have made different rates for different sources of income and thus the muslims give 2.5% of all their wealth including property, land, jewellery, ornaments, animals, cars, clothes etc each year...this system and the rates are not based on the teachings of the quran, as far as I believe....and so conversely nobody can question why we are paying whatever we have been told to pay , as the same question would also apply to them equally....
Ismailis have no book of fiqh...we have a Living Imam and obedience to the Olil Amr is Obedience to the Prophet and Allah.
We give dasond from our own honest earnings and not from the property of others and so the tax portion in theory does not belong to us either, as per the law of the land....so we are given the exemption so to speak...but if one pays even on the gross, then there is no harm but only good will come out of it as Allah is all-knowing and beneficient....
So dasond is usually given from the "pure' income before expenses...."pay your debt ( amanat) to the Lord carefully even if it is just a dime.." - it is the main foundation of faith with Du'a - it activates the power of Imamat !
There are atleast 40 verses in the quran on Khums, Ushr and Zakat...the Khums or ushr which God has enjoined on humankind does not belong to man in reality....it is not a part of your property as such - it is the amanat of God and HIS Prophet in your hands....and the Prophet says..
" the property does not decrease by the payment of Zakat or Khums.." i.e. it never belonged to you ! and so by not giving it back one is usurping it and that is a grave sin and a breach of trust.
The Imams have every right to test their flock by asking them to part with what is valuable to them in order to probe their loyalty through different means.
Allah even tested HIS own Prophets but putting them through trials and tribulations...the test of money is the easiest of such trials...a momin's duty is to submit voluntarily for Allah says.." he who volunteers to do good things, does the best things for himself..."
With regards to its use, the Imams are the masters of their affairs...this is a matter which rests entirely with them.
Allah says ..."who is there who will give me a goodly loan so that I can multiply it..."
Sorry ! no excuses but it is a momin's duty to pay. Allah says..."when death approached to one of them, he said "O ! God, give me back the life in order that I may do well what I have neglected to do...it is nothing but a meaningless expression..." Please read Sura al Mu'mineen .
Those who deceive Allah and HIS Prophet on the payment of Amanat are infidels and Imam Jafar as Sadiq has clarified this for us.
So we should conquer ourselves as we are our biggest enemy, then we will have no difficulty...Allah says in the quran...
" your own self is the evil dictator"....the Prophet says...
" The Zakat does not come out of their hands because seventeen devils are holding such people back...."
Allah says..." don't you see those people who take their passions to be their god..."
Please read Sura Muhamad...
" Behold you are those who are invited to expend part of your SUBSISTENCE for the support of God's religion but there are some of you who are NIGGARDLY and whoever is niggardly is niggardly towards his own soul...God is self-sufficient and YOU ARE NEEDY...if you turn back, HE will SUBSTITUTE another people in YOUR STEAD who shall NOT be like you...."
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