Monthly Archives: October, 2012

Zakat Obligation in Shares

Question:

I bought some shares in National Halal Food in England about two years ago. Should I pay the zakat for these shares annually? Is the zakat applied on the total amount of our money, or merely the profits? Last year I paid the zakat obligation of the total amount of my money, since I thought that it resembled saving golds, and I this year I plan to do the same. but one of my friend told me that the obliged zakat is applied only on the profit of that investment? Please give me an explanation.

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

Share or stock is an ownership letter of a part of a company. Thus, it is understood that the value of that share will always in accordance with the development of that company. If everything runs smooth, and the company managed to score some profits, the value of it’s share will increase, and vice versa, thus the value of such share might decrease to a lower point than the value written on the share sheet.

zakat obligation

Hence, it is understood that a share certificate may have three kinds of price:

– Price based on the value written on the share certificate or the value at the time the shares were released.
– Price based on assets/real assets of the company.
– Price applied on the stock market (the secondary market). This price, as already known, is affected by many factors, such as the dynamic of supply and demand, speculation, etc.

Continue Reading

Why Does Islam Forbid Taxes?

Question:

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarokatuh,

I’m sorry to join this discussion once more, since I work in customs institution, thus I feel like I have a moral burden to write about this according to my knowledge of it.

In customs institution, there are no such term as ‘Black Market’, instead, the existing term is ‘smuggling’ as listed in Article no. 102 Act No 17/1996, about customs duties. In that article, the categories and practices that might come into term of ‘smuggling’ is explained in detail.

In that act, there are no legal, illegal or half-legal way, but red and green line. Simply said, whoever imports or exports without noticing the customs institution (BC) is considered as committing smuggling. Thus, every thing is legal through one door, that is through BC.

Probably what Mr. Chris meant was wholesale import (this is not a term in customs, but a general term). This kind of import that being fought by our brothers who work in BC, since it usually manipulates the datas to reduce the amount of entrance fee (BM).

I’m questioning, as a common people in Islamic knowledge, is every thing in Islam should be rigidly comprehended, and that if religion does not regulate something means that it is legal and government’s rules is allowed to be violated? Isn’t it better for us to open our mind to my simple understanding below:

Is every regulation made by government without any indications or without any basis from the Qur’an and hadith legal to be violated? I can’t imagine what if all traffic signs (which of course has no indications from our religion) are neglected or violated by all people because religion does not regulate the traffic. How many people that will be abused by the irresponsible act of other drivers, and how many people will be dead or wounded due to the accidents?

I can’t imagine if smuggling is allowed in our religion, because indeed the threat it possesses is greater than it’s benefit. Let’s take an example the government policy that ban the import of second-hand clothing. If such clothing is allowed to enter the country, it will spread plague that might attached to the clothes, as well as destroy our local textile industries due to their inability to compete with the second-hand clothes.

The entrance fee is charged so that our industry will be able to compete with the imported goods. For information, the entrance fee is higher for finished goods, while some raw materials got 0% of entrance fee. If smuggling is legalized, or entrance fee is not imposed, the result will be terrible, that is our industries will be bankrupt and the wave of firings will cause social vulnerability. People’s buying power will be lowered and inflation rate will soar.

Entrance fee is charged to support the development our country, and of course the impacts reach all citizens, us too. If smuggling is allowed and no entrance fee imposed, where will the fund to build infrastructures -that enjoyed by all citizens, including businessmen -come from? Is it from zakat? Is our country, which is not a muslim country, able to fund it’s development by zakat, while the citizens are still not aware of the importance of zakat to replace taxes?

Among Indications that you and the other brothers gave, I haven’t find yet any indication that explicitly mention that Allah or Prophet Muhammad strictly ban muslims to charge taxes. I mean, as a common person, isn’t it better for us to view the matter comprehensively from the benefits of muslims, and how the bad impacts created from no entrance fee policy outweigh it’s benefits.

That is my simple perception as a common muslim, but as a common muslim too, if we do not obey our government, then who will be in charge to regulate and control relationships between men in worldly context that has not been established in the time of the Messenger of Allah, such as customs regulation, traffic regulation, business license, residence license, etc. Everything will be chaotic since no regulator to obey, because people will take over and oppress other people’s property. And Allah know best.

Donny E.
taxes
Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

Brother Donny and my other brothers who have kindly given their comments about rulings for taxes, I would like to thank you all for your inputs and criticisms, I wish what you have stated here will get you rewards from Allah’s side.

From several comments that enter the forum, I think brother Donny’s comment is enough to represent the content of all comments. Thus, I feel it is enough to reply to this comment only.

Brothers, before I respond further, I hope you’d like to re-read my answer regarding this matter.

I’ve mentioned in my previous answer about kinds of charges allowed in Islam. To remind you all, I’ll mention it once again:

Zakat Mal (obligational charity) and zakat of soul. This charge only obliged for muslims. I believe you are already familiar to it’s detail and distribution.

Al Jizya (Tribute), charged for souls, is obliged for the people of scriptures who live in Islamic country.
Al Kharaj (a kind of land taxes), charged for people of scriptures who use the land that belongs to the Islamic country. Income from both of these charges for people of scriptures who live inside Islamic country is used to fund the governance of Islamic country.

Al ‘Usyur or Nisful ‘Usyur. Al ‘Usyur (that is 1/10) is a charge on merchant from countries of disbeliever (a disbeliever who live in disbeliever countries and there are no peace treaty between his country and Islamic country, or even disbeliever country that against the Islamic countries). About 1/10 of their revenue from trading activities in Islamic country is taken. As for nisful ‘usyur (1/20), is charged on merchants from ahl zimmah, that is disbelievers who live in Islamic country.

If you, o brothers, think about these four charges deeply, I am sure you’ll find that all problems you stated before will be gone by itself, or at least lessen into minimum level.

But how come ? That is because jizya basically is similar to income tax charged by our current government, but the difference is that it is only charged to disbelievers/non muslims who live in Islamic country. Thus, muslims in such country would not be charged with income tax.

A Kharaj is similar to land taxes charged by the government, but the difference is that it is only charged upon productive land. Thus, al kharaj is lighter in burden than land and building taxes applied by the government today. And this charge is also imposed only to the disbelievers who reside in Islamic country and allowed to cultivate some part of state land.

Al ‘Usyur or Nishful ‘Usyur resembles commercial taxes imposed by the government.

Thus, the core of the problem here is not on whether there are charges or not,but the group of the society that become the object of those charges.

If customs taxes are applied just like what currently happened in some countries, it will benefit the disbelievers living in Islamic countries. They just need to pay one type of charge, while muslims need to pay for taxes, customs taxes, as well as zakat for property and zakat for their souls.

Think about this fact, doesn’t it mean that the current condition actually oppress the muslims? Doesn’t it mean that this policy benefiting the disbelievers over muslims? Are you willing to let this unfairness happened?

As a muslim who believes in Allah and the Last Day; what will you prioritize, and impossible to leave; zakat, or taxes?

According to your perspective and your feeling, what will cause larger negative effects if it is being violated?

Which one from these options that truly erase the poverty and prospering the citizens, zakat, or taxes?

I am sure, as a believer in Allah and the Last Day, you will choose zakat for all questions above. Zakat is the mean that truly able to reach the destitute, boost the buying power of society, and invoke blessings in their social them.

The fact that occurs in our country as well as other countries, where the government does not care about zakat, and prioritize taxes over it, is it the religion’s mistake, or human’s ?

Suppose that the current government is willing to manage and distribute zakat, as ordered in shari’a, the country will certainly be prosperous, people’s buying power will be high, schools and medications will be free, people’s debt will be paid, our policemen and soldiers will be well-paid, and the country will be able to buy weapons for defense.

But since the government prioritize taxes, these funds become unblessed, and income from taxes are taken illegally by some people, tax consultants become rich, disbelievers are free to outwit the government thus they’ll be able to abandon their obligation to pay the tax, and so on.

Brother, you’d like to know the difference of zakat and taxes? It lies on one’s faith. Your motivation to pay zakat comes from within, from your faith and piety. While in taxes, if it is not for they being forced to do it, probably 99% of the tax payers will avoid their obligation. This is why some of them hire the tax consultants, to be able to outsmart the amount of their taxes. Isn’t it?

Look again, brother: For all these years, who’s always try to avoid their taxes; people who pay zakat or those who do not pay it? Muslims, or disbelievers?

If only the government want to manage the zakat professionally, their officials do not need to spend to remind the citizens about the compulsory state of zakat, since every chaplain, scholar, religious teacher, and preacher will naturally do the socialization.

Ask the chaplain or friday preacher around you, Who orders them to admonish people about zakat? How much are they being paid for that work?

Hence, the government simply need to collect, manage, and distribute it. Nice, isn’t it?

Regarding tax problems in our country, I’d like you to think cleverly, who are the real owners of Toyota factory, McDonald restaurants, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Sony, Pepsi, etc, that we have here in Indonesia. Are they muslims, or non muslims, while muslims merely act as their agent or single holder of the brand, that function as representative?

If so, then it would be no problem to charge taxes from such goods, since it is part of the non muslims possession.

I’d like to as you again, Who are the owners of CALTEX, Shell, Freeport, and the like? I believe you already know that those companies belong to non muslims, thus you don’t need to be worry over taxes that they being charged of. Moreover, they suppose to get more taxes than they get now, since according to the example set by caliph Umar Ibn Al Khattab, they suppose to be charged about 10% (‘usyur) from their total income.

By this, you don’t have to worry that our country will loose it’s financial sources and supports. Furthermore, your worry that Islamic countries will be flooded by foreign goods has no basis at all, since Islamic government will charge about 10% or minimum of 5% of the total revenue of non muslims company selling their goods in Islamic countries.

Embracing these concepts of zakat, Kharaj, ‘Usyur or Nishful ‘Usyur above, is there still any concerns left that this country will be collapsed without any income resources? Or is there still any concerns that our domestic industry (muslims’) will not be able to compete with the foreign companies?

Brother, there are one sad fact to consider about our muslim communities today, Muslims prefer to buy the branded goods to high quality goods. I’m sure you know what I mean. For example, how shoes made in Cibaduyut (a famous are in Central Java for it’s shoes factories) which have good qualities, equal to the quality of made-in-Italy shoes, are not popular in it’s own country although it is sold with low prices? But if it is shoe from Italy, although the price soars, people will strive to buy it?

Moreover, those who choose to buy the Italy shoe will feel that they are high-class people, noble and prestigious. But the case is totally different with Cibaduyut shoe, they are embarrass to wear it. This mindset is the true destroyer of our domestic products. Their self pride and loyalties are with the non muslims brand and embarrassment is with the muslims or domestic brand.

Hence, I hope you’re not changing the focus of our problem, making you unable to view this rulings of taxes on muslims in clear perspective.

Brother Donny, may Allah bless you and your family. You said in your mail that, “Entrance fee is charged to support the development our country, and of course the impacts reach all citizens, us too. If smuggling is allowed and no entrance fee imposed, where will the fund to build infrastructures -that enjoyed by all citizens, including businessmen -come from? Is it from zakat? Is our country, which is not a muslim country, able to fund it’s development by zakat, while the citizens are still not aware of the importance of zakat to replace taxes?”

I think it is inappropriate for a muslim to give such statement about zakat, whichp is one of the main pillars of his religion. Think again about this statement! After that, imagine what will you say, at the time you stand alone in front of Allah, and Allah demand your responsibility over this statement. What will you say to Allah? Think about it carefully my Brother!

I understand why you’re complaining about my answer, because you try to match and decide upon Islamic sharia based on practices and facts in our country, which you admit not an Islamic country.

No wonder if you can’t find the solution between them. If you’re trying to discuss Islamic sharia, you shall view it from your faith’s perspective, not from the common practices in society or mistakes of the current government.

If you speak according to your faith perspective, I am sure you’ll utter no word but these:

إِنَّمَا كَانَ قَوْلَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذَا دُعُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ لِيَحْكُمَ بَيْنَهُمْ أَن يَقُولُوا سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا وَأُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ . النور 51

“When those that believe are called to Allah and His Messenger in order that he (that is, the Messenger) may judge their disputes among them, nothing becomes them but to say: ‘We hear and we obey.’ Such shall attain true success.” (Qs. An Nur/The Light: 51)

Traffic rules and the like have no relation to rulings for taxes upon muslims, since such rules merely bring goodness and no one suffer any loss due to it, as well as they are not against Islamic sharia.

But in taxes, there are indeed a contradiction: Know that every country that charge taxes to it’s people must abandon zakat. Whereas zakat is one of the main job of government ofIslamic country. As countries that charge taxes wont make any difference between muslims and non muslims, they all will be charged, thus the burden of muslims is double compare to the non muslims.

Inlanders burden will be twice the foreigner’s burden. Non muslims and foreigner will get special service, while muslims will be treated as step child. As a muslim, I believe you’ll feel displease with such treatment. If you already understand this fact, you’ll be able to understand why the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- declared:

إِنَّ صَاحِبَ المُكْسِ فِي النَّارِ. رواه أحمد والطبراني في الكبير من رواية رويفع بن ثابت رضي الله عنه ، وصححه الألباني.

“Verily, the tribute collectors will enter the Hell.” (Narrated by Ahmad and At Thobrani in his work, ‘Al Mu’jam Al Kabir’, from narration of Ruwaifi’ Ibn Thabit -may Allah be pleased with him-, and classed sahih by Al Albani)

The tribute collectors are threatened with Hell, since such act means to make resemblance between muslims and non muslims. In fact, non muslims are still better-treated than muslims, because the collectors will still view the muslims who had paid their zakat and give charity, as criminal; it seems like zakat has no value to them. While the non muslims will be considered as good citizens or good and wise member of society as long as they pay their taxes, although they disbelieve in Allah and worship other deities beside Allah, and they neglect the poor and destitute.

I wish this answer will be useful for you, my brothers, and will open your eyes wider to the wisdom of Islamic sharia. And Allah knows best.

Ustadz Dr. Muhammad Arifin Badri, M.A.
Article of www.syaria.com

Rulings regarding Buying Goods from Black Market

Question:

Assalamu’alaikum.

I want to ask a question, what is the ruling regarding buying goods from Black Market (BM)? For example, yesterday, my friend offered me a glasses (for nearsightedness) from BM, claiming that the item was exactly the similar item as those sold in the famous opticians, but with a far lower price.

May Allah blessed you,

Wassalamu ‘alaikum.

Masyatin Rais

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

Buying goods from places or people termed as Black Market is allowed, as long as the seller is truly the owner of the traded goods.

The status of black market is similar to the stores or stalls without business license, or it’s buildings are built without license and the owners do not have any business license, since administration affairs are the responsibility of the goods owner, and business places are not the responsibility of the buyers or consumers.

I want to ask you back: What is the ruling for you buying snacks or any other goods from the cadgers who do not own a business license at their places? Isn’t is also can be called black market, because the sellers do not own any business license? What is the difference between the cadgers and what-so-called black market?,

But if the seller is not the true owner of the goods, for example because he got the goods from stealing, robbing, or the like, it is not allowed for you to buy goods from him, since by buying it, you are helping him maintaining his wickedness. Furthermore, if you know that the seller is a stealer or robber, you are responsible to report his actions to the authorities so they can arrest him immediately and prevent his crime. And Allah knows best.

***

The following is the question of brother Donny E, which was the reply for the answer of Ustadz Muhammad Arifin Badri above. These questions and answers were posted in the mailing lists of Pengusaha Muslim (pm-fatwa) (Muslim Entrepreneur)

Question:

I was a bit surprised with your answer that allow people to buy goods from black market (BM). If the reason was merely due to license of place of business, such answer can be accepted. But what about black market that sells goods from smuggling or goods that enter a country without paying the entrance fee, such as cell phones or other electronic devices. If this is allowed in Islam, wouldn’t it creating loss to the country? Honestly I often get offers of cheap goods from abroad, but because the offers were in black market, I refused it since I know that the prices became low because no tax was imposed to it. Please give me an explanation.

Donny E.

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions.

To address your surprise about rulings regarding buying goods from black market, I’d like to suggest you to calm down a little, and do not be haste in viewing this problem.

Brother Donny, I am sure that you believe and have faith that religious laws must be upheld above all other laws and constitutions currently exist today, and in the future.

Brother, the term ‘black market’ existed as a direct effect of the constitutions or government rules, and not from sharia.

Before I answer your question, I want to ask you back: Will this term ‘black market’ still attached on several goods, if one day the government adopt the free trade system? Or they allow the goods to enter the country without entrance fee due to several reasons?

If so, will the law of Allah keep on changing daily, weekly, or annually in accordance to the changes in policies of some government officials?

And it is also possible, that after the government adopted the free trade system, in the next several months the government decide to walk out from the free trade organization. Is it possible for the Islamic sharia to be so labile, deciding that one thing is lawful in the morning, but unlawful in the afternoon, and it will return to lawful state once again tomorrow?

If this question succeeded to open your mind about the method of determining a rule or verdict in sharia, then you should know brother, that the lawful or unlawful state of a kind of trading, generally influenced by four things:

  • The lawful state of the commodities. If the commodities or goods are unlawful, similarly , to trade is also unlawful. But if the commodities are lawful, trading such things is also lawful.
  • Existence of elements of usury
  • Existence of elements of unclarity (gharar)
  • Existence of requirements that could lead to usury and unclarity

These are the most important factors that could make a kind of trading become unlawful . (Bidayatul Mujtahid 2/102)

If a trading is proven to be free from the four factors above, there are no reasons to prohibit it.

However, as the citizen of a state law, doing something that violate the rules – although it is lawful in sharia- may bring some risk, dealing with the authorities. If that is the condition, we should not do something, for example trading, that could endanger ourselves, although it is lawful in our religion.

The case of a businessman, Pujiono, who marry a 12 years-old girl, is one of the example of this condition. In sharia, there are no indications that prohibit such practice, and even Prophet Muhammad himself once married to a 9 years old girl. But what made brother Pujiono have to deal with the court?

Hopefully, this brief answer can make you understand the problem better, and can broaden your view about the sharia laws of your religion.

And Allah knows best.

Author: Ustadz Dr. Muhammad Arifin Badri, M.A.
Article of www.syaria.com

Question and Answer: Rulings regarding Business of Debt Collector

Question:

The following is the description of this business:

For example, A (a person or a company) gave some loans to another person or company, named B. After some time, reasoning that B hasn’t settled his debt as signed in their contract, A recruited a person or a company, named C, to be his debt collector. C worked to collect the debts of B, and he was paid by A according to an agreement between them, whether in a form of percentage of money that he managed to collect from B, or an amount that has been agreed before.

While what happened, mostly, in the real life (an additional explanation from me), is that debt collectors usually recruited by banks or other funding companies since those institutions operate in business of debt and credit. Profession of debt collector (in here C), usually identical to violence, because the professionals used to force, even by terrorizing, the debtor (in here B) to settle his debt. This is because they are paid to collect the loans back. And we already got so many reports about this matter.

Andi S.
Baladewa street, Depok

Answer:

All praises be to Allah, peace and prayer may always be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his devoted companions. Amin.

As explained in several previous occasions that debt and credit is one type of contract that aimed to offer help or aid to the needs. That is why the first party, serves as the helper, that is usually termed as creditor, is not allowed to gain profits from the aid he gives. Creditor should only seek for rewards and profits from Allah; in the form of merits, blessings in life, and His please.

Furthermore, if your brother, that is the debtor is not capable yet to settle his debt, the creditor, is obliged to postpone the due time until the debtor get chances to fulfill his obligation.

وَإِن كَانَ ذُو عُسْرَةٍ فَنَظِرَةٌ إِلَى مَيْسَرَةٍ

“But if the debtor is in straitened circumstance, let him have respite until the time of ease; and whatever you remit by way of charity is better for you, if only you know.” (Qs. Al Baqarah/The Cow: 280)

Although the debtor is able to settle his debt in time, The shari’a of Islam still open the door of Paradise to the creditors, that is, if he let half or even all of the credit he gave unpaid:

وَأَن تَصَدَّقُواْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

“And whatever you remit by way of charity is better for you, if only you know.” (Qs. Al Baqarah/The Cow: 280)

This condition will certainly apply if every creditor take the laws of Allah, and faith in Allah and the Last Day as their guiding lantern in their lives.

مَنْ طَلَبَ حَقّاً فَلْيَطْلُبْهُ فِي عَفَافٍ وَافٍ أَوْ غَيْرَ وَافٍ. رواه الترمذي وابن ماجه وابن حبان والحاكم

“Whoever ask for his right, shall ask it with dignity, whether he’ll manage to get it or not.” (Narrated by Tirmidhi, Ibn Maja, Ibn Hibban, and Al Hakim).

Brother, these indications above show that Islam teach people to practice noble manners. And what do you think about this beautiful and excellent shari’a?

Hence, the creditor will always be a contributed one, whether the debt he lent being settled in time or not, and the debtor as the helped party should appreciate and being grateful for the aids of his brother.

لاَ يَشْكُرُ اللَّهَ مَنْ لاَ يَشْكُرُ النَّاسَ. رواه أبو داود وغيره

“A man who isn’t being grateful for others (who did good to him) doesn’t considered as being grateful to Allah.”

It is deservedly for you to behave kindly to your brother who had helped you and offered you aid. That is why, the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- stated that among the indications that you are a noble-minded and lofty man is that you realize the merits of your brother to you and try to return it to him a better way.

إِنَّ خِيَارَ الناس أَحْسَنُهُمْ قَضَاءً. رواه مسلم

“The best of man is the best one when he settled his debt.” (Narrated by Muslim)

If you couldn’t recompense your brother’s kindness and help with a better one, at least you should pray for goodness for him:

مَنْ صَنَعَ إِلَيْكُمْ مَعْرُوفًا فَكَافِئُوهُ فَإِنْ لَمْ تَجِدُوا مَا تُكَافِئُونَهُ فَادْعُوا لَهُ حَتَّى تَرَوْا أَنَّكُمْ قَدْ كَافَأْتُمُوهُ. رواه أحمد وأبو داود وصححه الألباني

“Whoever has been kind to you, recompense his kindness. And if you don’t have anything to recompense him, pray for goodness for him until you feel that you’ve recompensed him.” (Narrated by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and classed sahih by Al Albani)

This is the ideal picture of debt and credit according to Islamic shari’a.

However, since Islam is not the religion of the idles and greed, it already close all doors to evil men to bear their evils. As Islam has blocked all doors of usury to be happened, it is also closed all ways for evils of the brazen-faced to be happened.

Thus, Islam condemned (forbid) the actions of delaying in settling debts.

مَطْلُ الْغَنِىِّ ظُلْمٌ وَإِذَا أُتْبِعَ أَحَدُكُمْ عَلَى مَلِىءٍ فَلْيَتْبَعْ. متفق عليه

“Delays of the capable man is a wrongdoing, and if your bill is moved to the have, he shall obey it.” (Muttafaqun ‘alaih)

In another narration, the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- threatened the greedy who do not recompense the kindness of their brothers, in his saying:

مَنْ أَخَذَ أَمْوَالَ النَّاسِ يُرِيدُ أَدَاءَهَا أَدَّى اللَّهُ عَنْهُ ، وَمَنْ أَخَذَ يُرِيدُ إِتْلاَفَهَا أَتْلَفَهُ اللَّهُ. رواه البخاري

“Whoever takes other people wealth intending to return it, Allah will ease his way in returning that wealth, and whoever takes other people wealth intending to spoil it, Allah will certainly destroy him.” (Narrated by Bukhari)

And among the ways of shari’a to block the evil practices of the brazen-faced is by obliging writing, and witnessing in every debt contract, and by legalizing mortgage.

These three things are applied to give safety for the rights-owner, that is the creditors, from the wickedness of the debtor, as well as to give safety for debtors from the greediness of the creditor, as explained in the verses below:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِذَا تَدَايَنتُم بِدَيْنٍ إِلَى أَجَلٍ مُّسَمًّى فَاكْتُبُوهُ وَلْيَكْتُب بَّيْنَكُمْ كَاتِبٌ بِالْعَدْلِ وَلاَ يَأْبَ كَاتِبٌ أَنْ يَكْتُبَ كَمَا عَلَّمَهُ اللّهُ فَلْيَكْتُبْ وَلْيُمْلِلِ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِ الْحَقُّ وَلْيَتَّقِ اللّهَ رَبَّهُ وَلاَ يَبْخَسْ مِنْهُ شَيْئًا فَإن كَانَ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِ الْحَقُّ سَفِيهًا أَوْ ضَعِيفًا أَوْ لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُ أَن يُمِلَّ هُوَ فَلْيُمْلِلْ وَلِيُّهُ بِالْعَدْلِ وَاسْتَشْهِدُواْ شَهِيدَيْنِ من رِّجَالِكُمْ فَإِن لَّمْ يَكُونَا رَجُلَيْنِ فَرَجُلٌ وَامْرَأَتَانِ مِمَّن تَرْضَوْنَ مِنَ الشُّهَدَاء أَن تَضِلَّ إْحْدَاهُمَا فَتُذَكِّرَ إِحْدَاهُمَا الأُخْرَى وَلاَ يَأْبَ الشُّهَدَاء إِذَا مَا دُعُواْ وَلاَ تَسْأَمُوْاْ أَن تَكْتُبُوْهُ صَغِيرًا أَو كَبِيرًا إِلَى أَجَلِهِ ذَلِكُمْ أَقْسَطُ عِندَ اللّهِ وَأَقْومُ لِلشَّهَادَةِ وَأَدْنَى أَلاَّ تَرْتَابُواْ إِلاَّ أَن تَكُونَ تِجَارَةً حَاضِرَةً تُدِيرُونَهَا بَيْنَكُمْ فَلَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَلاَّ تَكْتُبُوهَا وَأَشْهِدُوْاْ إِذَا تَبَايَعْتُمْ وَلاَ يُضَآرَّ كَاتِبٌ وَلاَ شَهِيدٌ وَإِن تَفْعَلُواْ فَإِنَّهُ فُسُوقٌ بِكُمْ وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَيُعَلِّمُكُمُ اللّهُ وَاللّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ {282} وَإِن كُنتُمْ عَلَى سَفَرٍ وَلَمْ تَجِدُواْ كَاتِبًا فَرِهَانٌ مَّقْبُوضَةٌ

“Believers! Whenever you contract a debt from one another for a known term, commit it to writing. Let a scribe write it down between you justly, and the scribe may not refuse to write it down according to what Allah has taught him; so let him write, and let the debtor dictate; and let him fear Allah, his Lord, and curtail no part of it. If the debtor be feebleminded, weak, or incapable of dictating, let his guardian dictate equitably, and call upon two of your men as witnesses; but if two men are not there, then let there be one man and two women as witnesses from among those acceptable to you so that if one of the two women should fail to remember, the other might remind her. Let not the witnesses refuse when they are summoned (to give evidence). Do not show slackness in writing down the transaction, whether small or large, along with the term of its payment. That is fairest in the sight of Allah; it is best for testimony and is more likely to exclude all doubts. If it be a matter of buying and selling on the spot, it is not blameworthy if you do not write it down; but do take witnesses when you settle commercial transactions with one another. And the scribe or the witness may be done no harm. It will be sinful if you do so. Beware of the wrath of Allah. He teaches you the Right Way and has full knowledge of everything. And if you are on a journey and do not find a scribe to write the document then resort to taking pledges in hand.” (Qs. Al Baqarah/The Cow: 282-283)

By the existence of the three matters above, both parties wouldn’t be able to manipulate the number of credits, or delay or hasten the due time, and the likes of the wickedness.

By the existence of mortgaging, creditors will feel safe about his rights, since he’ll be able to sell or to auction the mortgaged goods if the debtors are unable to settle their debts at the due time, or if they tried to make up some reasons to postpone their obligations.

Thus, in times like ours now, where mandates seem to vanish from the hearts of the people, fears to Allah seem to be disappeared, and lawful and unlawful matters are being ignored, practicing the three guidances above, or even just one of it, particularly mortgage, seems to be more and more important.

But of you try to look close to the current phenomena of the creditors and debtors in our society, you’ll find that:

Creditors are very ambitious to lend their money to the debtors, to get the interest of it, a.k.a usury. Thus they are speculating desperately in giving their funds. Banks and funding bodies are in haste to give loans. They do not like to require for mortgaged goods to their debtors candidate, since mortgage will just decrease the number of their debtors, as well as the interest they’ll get. The debtors, on the other hand, dislike the requirements of mortgaging something, since the creditors usually try to obtain more profits by transgressing their rights when they auctioned the mortgaged stuffs, thus the debtors feel like being disadvantaged twice.

On the contrary, the debtors are highly ambitious in obtaining wealth by any means, thus they care less about the forbidden state of usury. The most important thing for them is to expand their business, thus their profits and their wealth will be increased as well. If committing usury, which sin is terribly great, so bad that the lightest of it’s sin is similar to a child who sexually assault his own mother, would such person qualified to be trusted to settle his debt in dignified way? Their principle says: as long as debts can be postponed, why should settle it in time?

Thus, it is not strange that in the real life, both parties are tricking each other in their contract.

One of the temporary solution taken by the creditors, in order to get their fund back, is recruiting the debt collectors, who get used to do violence in collecting the loans. And their harsh attitude must be happened. The creditors will not need to recruit such debt collectors if they haven’t been bored trying to send the bills to the debtors. To use the legal way will be longer and more difficult to do, moreover it’ll cost more, and open the chance for the evil of the judicial mafia.

I’d like you to be honest! Will the banks or financial companies recruit the debt collectors if their debtors settled their debts in time, or even better, before the due time?

That is the picture of society whose life is far from decency, faith, and the laws of Allah; but filled with avariciousness. Allah the Exalted will recompense the evils of some people with the evils of some others. This is the phenomenon, that was depicted by Hasan Al Bashri long ago:

يُعَذِّبُ الله الظَالِمَ بِالظَالِمِ ثُمَّ يُدْخِلُهُمَا النَارَ جَمِيعاً

“Allah will punish the transgressor by the wickedness of other transgressor, and both of them will be plunged in Hell.”

If only our society want to obey the Islamic shari’a, they certainly will not need the service of the debts collectors, since the justice is being upheld, mandate is being fulfilled, forbidden wealth are being avoided, and transgressions and oppressions are being fought against.

The conclusion that we can infer from explanations above is that debt collectors is a forbidden form of business in Islam. Thus, it is not appropriate for you, as a believer of Allah and the Last Day, to tarnish your life with it.

Brother, if you are devastated by this bad conditions, what will you do? Will you just be silent and surrender your faith to the status quo? If that is your choice, be sure that your offsprings will inherit this upsetting condition as well, or even ‘develop’ it into more terrible condition, or, minimally add the long drafts of the victims of this condition.

Brother! Realize that the key of changes that you’re waiting for is in your hand. Try to use that key to change it step by step.

Build some trust, awareness to recompense the kindness of others with a similar or even better kindness, as well as try to establish the spirit to seek the please of Allah in every of your trading transactions.

Burn your spirit to make this world as a field to plant the seeds of happiness in the Hereafter.

Believe that if you have tried to use the key of changes in your hand, it wont be long before your dreams come true. A life that is colored with faithfulness to Allah and piety, trading that is free from usury, and blessed sustenances.

Brother, never underestimate your role in shaping the future of your society. You have a tremendous role, since society consist of you and your friends. Don’t you realize that you have a vital role in the life of your family, your kith and kin, your friends, and your society?

Know that every changes usually starts from one of several high-minded persons.

مَنْ سَنَّ فِى الإِسْلاَمِ سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً فَلَهُ أَجْرُهَا وَأَجْرُ مَنْ عَمِلَ بِهَا بَعْدَهُ مِنْ غَيْرِ أَنْ يَنْقُصَ مِنْ أُجُورِهِمْ شَىْءٌ . رواه مسلم

“Whoever starts to practice a method/pious deed in Islam, will be rewarded for it, and for the deeds of all people who imitate him, without decreasing their rewards at all.” (Narrated by Muslim)

Be that man.

How to do it? By making your appointments whenever you make it, pay it in time, or even faster, and do not forget to recompense the kindness of your brother with the similar thing or even better than that. And if you are the creditor, and your brother is having difficulties on the due time, postpone his bills without requiring any interest. Do not worry that you’ll loose your money, as long as you have a good intention, and being sincere in giving aid, Allah will never waste your deeds and intentions.

Know that whatever your brother does to you, in every aspect of your life, is the return of what you did to him. Abu Qilabah, one of the past time scholars admonished us:

البِرُّ لاَ يَبْلَى وَالذَّنْبُ لاَ يُنْسَى وَالدَّيَّانُ لاَ يَمُوتُ، اعْمَلْ مَا شِئْتَ كَمَا تَدِيْنُ تُدَانُ

“Kindness is eternal, sins will not be forgotten, while Allah The One Who Recompense will never die. Do whatever you like, and as the way you do, that is how you’ll be recompensed.”

Have a nice try, and hopefully you’ll get the rewards of your strives.

May Allah the Exalted bestow upon us all lawful sustenances and bless the sustenance He has given us. And Allah know best.

***

Author: Ustadz Dr. Muhammad Arifin Badri, M.A.
Article of www.syaria.com

Self-resignation and Striving in Earning A living

All praises be to Allah the Exalted, One Who has bestowed innumerable bounties upon us all. Prayer and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and all of his companions. Amin.

Self-resignation and Striving in Earning A living

Living A Noble Life by Our Own Earning

Islamic sharia is a noble sharia, which keeps on teaching every nobility to it’s followers. Islam also forbids every contemptible thing causing humiliation toward the perpetrator.

This sharia applies upon all aspects of human life, starting from the most vital affair in their life, that is things regarding self-pride and their life aim on the world, until the smallest of their affairs.

Regarding the aim of life, Islam has taught to all mankind to respect their own selves and place it on the rightful, dignified position. Allah revealed in His decree:

وَلَقَدْ كَرَّمْنَا بَنِي آدَمَ وَحَمَلْنَاهُمْ فِي الْبَرِّ وَالْبَحْرِ وَرَزَقْنَاهُم مِّنَ الطَّيِّبَاتِ وَفَضَّلْنَاهُمْ عَلَىٰ كَثِيرٍ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقْنَا تَفْضِيلًا

“Indeed, We honoured the progeny of Adam, and bore them across land and sea and provided them with good things for their sustenance, and exalted them above many of Our creatures.” (QS Al Isra/The Night Journey: 70)

Allah the Exalted has created mankind as a nobler creature compare to the other creations. Thus, it becomes a humiliation for them if they lower themselves by devoting their life -in a term of worshipping- to other creations. Because in fact they are created to a be leader upon this earth and to make it prosperous.

وَإِلَى ثَمُودَ أَخَاهُمْ صَالِحًا قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُواْ اللّهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـهٍ غَيْرُهُ هُوَ أَنشَأَكُم مِّنَ الأَرْضِ وَاسْتَعْمَرَكُمْ فِيهَا فَاسْتَغْفِرُوهُ ثُمَّ تُوبُواْ إِلَيْهِ إِنَّ رَبِّي قَرِيبٌ مُّجِيبٌ هود 61

“And to Thamud We sent their brother Salih. He said: My people! Serve Allah; you have no god but He. He brought you into being out of the earth, and has made you dwell in it. So ask Him to forgive you, and do turn towards Him in repentance. Indeed My Lord is near, responsive to prayers.” (QS Hud: 61)

Even more, the earth and all of it’s content was created by Allah for the sake of human being.

هُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ لَكُم مَّا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا ثُمَّ اسْتَوَىٰ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ فَسَوَّاهُنَّ سَبْعَ سَمَاوَاتٍ وَهُوَ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ

“It is He Who created for you all that is on earth and then turned above and fashioned it into seven heavens. He knows all things.” (QS Al Baqara/The Cow: 29)

أَلَمْ تَرَوْا أَنَّ اللَّهَ سَخَّرَ لَكُمْ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَأَسْبَغَ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعَمَهُ ظَاهِرَةً وَبَاطِنَةً لقمان:20

“Have you not seen that Allah has subjected to your service all that is in the heavens and on the earth and has abundantly bestowed upon you all His bounties, both visible and invisible? Yet some persons dispute regarding Allah without having any knowledge or guidance or any illuminating Book.” (QS Luqman: 20)

And in the social interactions among them, Islam has taught human to be kind and lofty. Allah the Exalted decreed:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُ بِالْعَدْلِ وَالْأِحْسَانِ وَإِيتَاءِ ذِي الْقُرْبَى وَيَنْهَى عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنْكَرِ وَالْبَغْيِ يَعِظُكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ النحل:90

“Surely Allah enjoins justice, kindness and the doing of good to kith and kin, and forbids all that is shameful, evil and oppressive. He exhorts you so that you may be mindful.” (QS An Nahl/The Bee: 90)

Qatada -may Allah be pleased with him- said: “There are no goodness that was believed and performed by the ancient ignorants but Allah has ordered it. And there are no wickedness that was previously considered as disgrace but Allah has forbidden it. And indeed, Allah the Exalted only forbade the low and shameful acts. ” (1)

Among the good manners and noble characters that being taught in Islam is independency, without clinging to other people in every necessities.

Brother, don’t you know that by earning for your living independently your dignity will never be decreased, but even soaring high? Because by doing so, you will be able to stand as high as other people.

It is different with the act of begging to others to get a part from their wealth, which will only degrade your dignity.

الْيَدُ الْعُلْيَا خَيْرٌ مِنَ الْيَدِ السُّفْلَى وَالْيَدُ الْعُلْيَا الْمُنْفِقَةُ وَالسُّفْلَى السَّائِلَةُ) متفق عليه

“The upper hand is better than the lower hand, the upper hand is the giver, and the lower hand is the beggar.” (Muttafaqun ‘alayh)

Imam Al Baji Al Maliki said: “The upper hand or the giver hand gets more rewards. The giver hand is termed ‘the upper hand’ means that it is higher in degree and place, whether in this world or in the Hereafter.”

In the past time, the companions and scholars worked to fulfill their own needs; some of them traded, the others farmed, and the other ones worked as worker to other, without reluctancy or feeling of humbleness.

Brother, when we choose to start working, probably a hesitancy will rise in our heart, especially if we are get used to be pampered by our parents. Moreover if the work we are about to start is a ‘rough-work’ compared to our parents’ social status.

However, it is alright if you still give it a try! Read this real story below:

قال عَلِىُّ بن أبي طالب : خَرَجْتُ فَأَتَيْتُ حَائِطاً قَالَ فَقَالَ دَلْوٌ بِتَمْرَةٍ قَالَ فَدَلَّيْتُ حَتَّى مَلأْتُ كَفِّى ثُمَّ أَتَيْتُ الْمَاءَ فَاسْتَعْذَبْتُ – يَعْنِى شَرِبْتُ – ثُمَّ أَتَيْتُ النَّبِىَّ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- فَأَطْعَمْتُهُ بَعْضَهُ وَأَكَلْتُ أَنَا بَعْضَهُ رواه أحمد وحسنه الألباني

“Ali Ibn Abi Thalib -may Allah be pleased with him- said: One day I went out of the house, then I came to a garden, and I said to it’s owner: (I am willing to bail out water for you with a return of) each pail a date fruit. And then I bailed out the water for him, until I got wages of a handful of date fruits. Next I drank some water, and I went to see the Prophet – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- at once, and I gave him half of my dates and I ate the other half of it.” Narrated by Ahmad, and classed hasan by Al Albani.

Brother, would you like to do this job by this amount of wage? And was the dignity of Ali Ibn Abi Thalib -may Allah be pleased with him- lowered just because he did a job with a very low payment?

Brother, How many times you’ve proclaimed that you love the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- and declared that he is you role model? Now is the time for you to prove the truth of your claim, that is by trying at your best to live independently, and fulfill your needs from your own result of work.

Maybe you are questioning, ‘why should I prove my claim by doing so?’. The answer lies in the following guidance of the Prophet -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him-:

(لأَنْ يَغْدُوَ أَحَدُكُمْ فَيَحْطِبَ عَلَى ظَهْرِهِ فَيَتَصَدَّقَ بِهِ وَيَسْتَغْنِىَ بِهِ مِنَ النَّاسِ خَيْرٌ لَهُ مِنْ أَنْ يَسْأَلَ رَجُلاً أَعْطَاهُ أَوْ مَنَعَهُ ذَلِكَ؛ فَإِنَّ الْيَدَ الْعُلْيَا أَفْضَلُ مِنَ الْيَدِ السُّفْلَى وَابْدَأْ بِمَنْ تَعُولُ) متفق عليه

“For one of you to go out and gather firewood on his back, then give it in charity and make himself independent of people thereby, is better than asking a man who may give to him or withhold from him. And the upper hand is better than the lower hand, and start with those who are under your care.” (Muttafaqun ‘alayh)

What do you feel, after you read this message from your role model? Do you still feel any reluctancy to strive, work as hard as you can to live a noble life, independently?

Brother, pump up your spirit and set your intention, because by living independently, the doors of Paradise will be opened wider for you. You don’t believe it? Pay attention to an explanation of your role model, Allah’s messenger -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him-:

(عَلَى كُلِّ مُسْلِمٍ صَدَقَةٌ)، قِيلَ: أَرَأَيْتَ إِنْ لَمْ يَجِدْ؟ قَالَ: (يَعْتَمِلُ بِيَدَيْهِ فَيَنْفَعُ نَفْسَهُ وَيَتَصَدَّقُ)، قَالَ: قِيلَ: أَرَأَيْتَ إِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ؟ قَالَ: (يُعِينُ ذَا الْحَاجَةِ الْمَلْهُوفَ)، قَالَ: قِيلَ لَهُ: أَرَأَيْتَ إِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ؟ قَالَ: (يَأْمُرُ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ أَوِ الْخَيْرِ)، قَالَ: أَرَأَيْتَ إِنْ لَمْ يَفْعَلْ؟ قَالَ: (يُمْسِكُ عَنِ الشَّرِّ فَإِنَّهَا صَدَقَةٌ). رواه متفق عليه

“It is obliged for every muslim to give charity”. It is said to him, “What if he is unable to do that?” He replied, “He should work with his both his hands, thus he can benefits himself and give charity.” It is said to him, “What if he is unable to do that too?” He replied, “He can help people in deep trouble.” It is said again to him, “What if he is still unable to do that?” He replied, “He enjoins goodness or kindness.” The one who ask him said again: “What if he is still unable to do that?” He replied, “He refrains himself from evil deeds, it is indeed a charity.” (Muttafaqun ‘alayh)

After reading this explanation, shall we still have reasons to not starting to strive, and live independently? Shall we still have too much pride to start to indulge in the harshness and challenges of life, in a lawful businesses ?

Living by our own income from a lawful job is indeed a respectable life. And an income from our own strive is the most blessed income.

عن رافع بن خديج قال: قيل يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَىُّ الْكَسْبِ أَطْيَبُ؟ قَالَ: (عَمَلُ الرَّجُلِ بِيَدِهِ، وَكُلُّ بَيْعٍ مَبْرُورٍ) رواه أحمد والطبراني والحاكم وصححه الألباني

“From Rafi’ Ibn Khadij, he said: ‘It was said (to the messenger of Allah -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him-), O messenger of Allah! What income is the best of it?’ He answered, ‘The result of one’s own hand, and every decent trading.'” Narrated by Ahmad, At Thabrany , Al Hakim, and classed sahih by Al Albani.

Thus, the messenger of Allah – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him-said:

(مَا أَكَلَ أَحَدٌ طَعَامًا قَطُّ خَيْرًا مِنْ أَنْ يَأْكُلَ مِنْ عَمَلِ يَدِهِ ، وَإِنَّ نَبِىَّ اللَّهِ دَاوُدَ – عَلَيْهِ السَّلاَمُ – كَانَ يَأْكُلُ مِنْ عَمَلِ يَدِهِ) رواه البخاري
وفي رواية : مَا أَكَلَ رَجُلٌ طَعَامًا قَطُّ أَحَلَّ مِنْ عَمَلِ يَدَيْهِ.

“Nobody has ever eaten a better meal than that which one has earned by working with one’s own hands. The Prophet of Allâh, Dâwud (David) -peace be upon him- used to eat from the earnings of his manual labour.” Narrated by Bukhari.

In another narration: “Nobody has ever eaten a more lawful meal than that which one has earned by working with one’s own hand.”

In this hadith, Allah’s messenger -peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- particularly mentioned prophet of Allah, David -peace be upon him-. It seems like he’s the only one who did so, but actually, every prophet -peace be upon them- did so, fulfilling their needs by their own result. The scholars, in explaining about this hadith, mentioned that there was one special distinction on prophet David -peace be upon him- that was not possessed by the other prophets. Prophet David -peace and prayer of Allan was not only a prophet, but he also was a great, prosperous king, Read the following verses, and imagine about how great was the power and riches that was bestowed upon him by Allah the Exalted.

{18} وَالطَّيْرَ مَحْشُورَةً كُلٌّ لَّهُ أَوَّابٌ {19} وَشَدَدْنَا مُلْكَهُ وَآتَيْنَاهُ الْحِكْمَةَ

“(O Prophet), bear with patience what they say, and call to mind Our servant David, who was endowed with great strength and who constantly turned (to Allah). With him We had subjected the mountains that they join him in celebrating Allah’s glory, evening and morning, and the birds, too, in their flocks, and turn again and again to celebrating Allah’s glory. And We strengthened his kingdom and endowed him with wisdom and decisive judgement.” (As Shaad: 17-20)

However, he refused to eat but from the result of his own work. Some scholars said that previously, Prophet David -peace be upon him- tried to seek for income by making an iron shield and then sold it.
Continue Reading

Copyright © 2017. Powered by WordPress & Romangie Theme.