Zakat: A Sacred Pillar
Zakat is not just a fundamental pillar of Islam. It is also a revolutionary concept with the potential to ease the suffering of millions around the world.
As Allah (SWT) tells us in the Holy Qur’an:
“And be steadfast in prayer and regular in charity: And whatever good ye send forth for your souls before you, ye shall find it with Allah” (Qur’an 2:110)
What is Zakat?
Zakat is the annual payment made by Muslims to support those most in need. It is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and is a key part of the Islamic faith. By donating a percentage of your wealth in order to help those less fortunate than yourself, you can please Allah (SWT) while supporting your brothers and sisters across the world.
In summary, any adult Muslim who is working or earning more than is necessary to fulfil their everyday essential needs is expected to pay a percentage of their wealth as Zakat.
Who is Eligible for Zakat?
There are two ways to answer this question - who is eligible to pay Zakat and who is eligible to receive Zakat.
As defined by the Zakat rules, those eligible to pay must be:
- Of sound mind
- Past the age of puberty
- Have positive cash or goods flow
- Have a total personal wealth higher than the Nisab value
Those who are eligible to pay Zakat follow the teachings of the Holy Qur'an (Chapter at-Tawbah Tevbe, 60) as:
As-Sadaqat (Zakat) are only for the Fuqara' (poor), and Al-Masakin (the needy) and those employed to collect (Zakat funds); and for to attract the hearts of those who have been inclined (towards Islam); and to free the captives; and for those in debt; and for Allah's Cause (i.e. for Mujahidun - those fighting in the holy wars), and for the wayfarer (a traveller who is cut off from everything); a duty imposed by Allah. And Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise.