Syed Kaleem Geelani

Ramadan Donations- Think before you offer!

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From Shrines to Mosques, from trains to buses and from public places to traffic lights- all filled with people seeking alms or donations

The annual coming of the month of Ramadan is always a special moment for believers as the blessed month promises blessings more than any other month throughout the year. Rewards of Allah are in abundance during this sacred month of Ramdan and believers tend to spend some of their time in Ibadah (worship) seeking the acceptance and forgiveness from Almighty.  The month is indeed one of the door that Allah has opened for his slaves to earn his choicest rewards in the month of Ramadan and a large part of it is achieved through making donations or Sadaqa (giving in charity). Islam always advises its followers to give plenty of charities, especially during the month of Ramadan.

Charity is one of the most honoured deeds. Allah Almighty urges it in his noble Book as He says; “They who have loaned Allah a good loan & who is it that would loan Allah a goodly loan so, He will multiply it for him & he will have noble rewards”.  Charity has great rewards and that is why our Prophet (SAW) urged it on many occasions in his Sunnah & clarified that charity never reduces ones wealth rather it increases it. If the charity is given in Ramadan, then its reward is combined with the honour of time.

During the month of Ramadan, Muslims all over the world tend to offer more prayers, tend to be sympathetic, truthful, caring, loving and offering donations and alms at large. The sacred month of Ramadan comes as a sigh of relief and hope for the poor, downtrodden & needy people to live their lives and feed their families in a good way by virtue of the tendency of people to give more in charity.

However, the generosity exhibited by people with the arrival of the blessed month of Ramadan drives more and more people to beg and there are those who have made begging into a profession. Some healthy and hearty men and women can also be seen taking to the streets and begging  instead of opting for any work. Begging seems an easier option!

There is no denying of the fact that Allah almighty has promised great rewards to those who give away alms and donations especially in the month of Ramadan, but seeing begging becoming a profession by each passing day, one is bemused whether to give alms of not- If I give alms to a man or a woman who is seemingly healthy and young and can possibly earn his/her livelihood by working decently, am I doing correct thing? Am I not encouraging them to go for begging when they can actually opt for any other work and what if I don’t give alms to them, shall I miss the rewards promised by Allah? All these questions pop up in one’s mind instantly when face to face with such a situation!

Most people believe that for donating alms, one shouldn’t bother himself/herself about who the seeker is and it is our intentions that matter as we help them for the sake of Allah and Allah alone. They need to rethink and reconsider their opinion as seeking the mercy and forgiveness from Allah is not only the motive of donating, but it has been made compulsory and highly rewarding by Allah for some innate reason- to improve the economic conditions of poor and needy people.

The author is a Freelance Writer & can be reached at [email protected]

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