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The Zakat ul Fitr files: what is it, when, how, where and to whom to pay it
|Subject: The Zakat ul Fitr files: what is it, when, how, where and to whom to pay it Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:32 am|| |
Assalamou aleikoum wa rahmatoullah wa barakatou.What is Zakat ul Fitr ?
Zakat ul Fitr is the finishing touch to Ramadan, the final lap to end Ramadan knowing that as long as we strove to uphold the Ramadan spirit and manners (that we should still keep after Ramadan), Zakat ul Fitr is the mean to purify our souls from any little mistakes we made during our month of fasting by the way of giving in charity.
But, the first sentence I read on some websites, to describe Zakat ul Fitr, is that ''it is a small charity that every muslim is obliged
to pay...'' true, yes, it is a charity and it is a small amount but it is something
that muslims who do not know the rulings & meanings just do by throwing a few £, € or $ in the charity box marked : ZAkaat, at the entrance of the mosque and they do not know exactly why, they just do it because it has to be done. They just know that their mosques has set up the amount of Zakaat ul Fitr to x amount of £, € or $, yen, rupees, dinars and so on....
Yes, it is a charity,but the charity is the means to an end.
What is Zakat ul Fitr for primarily ? why do we have to pay it ?
It would be better to acquaint us, the lay muslims with the essence of Zakaat ul Fitr first, its noble aims and benefits (for both the giver and the recipient) rather than making it ''.. a small amount that Muslims are obliged to pay as charity at the end if Ramadan..'' even if the description is not wrong.
How can the souls be purified if the muslims just make Zakat ul Fitr an automated gesture? It may be just a ''small amount'' but for the giver, the rewards are so great that s/he should not regard it just as a ''small amount'' but as what it is really, definitely an act of worship
How can we celebrate Eid if we do not stop a minute to think of those whom the Zakat is destined ? how can we really close the Ramadan door if we do not reflect on the mistakes we made this year and resolve to be a better a muslim (even after Ramadan) and that the first step is to pay the Zakat ul Fitr in dignified manner, and not just as an obligation that should be discharged, and khalas, ''I have done it, I am in the clear'', or worse, for some, it is ''oh no, do I really have to pay Zakat ul Fitr on behalf of my wife and children, really?'' (look of dismay on their faces).
It has been become so widespread and so easy to just pay money that it has 'commonized'
the Zakat ul Fitr. But in the time of our blessed Prophet,
, Zakat ul Fitr was paid in food items, and it is really how it should still be done. You can hear people nowadays saying ''... they are no poors in my area''! Oh no? then get out of your area and go where the less blessed than you, are. And remember, poor people do not advertise the fact they are poor. So, we may not know, but if we take time to look around, with new eyes and an open mind, and to really listen to what people are saying, we may well find out that there are more people who are in need of help than we thought..
You can also hear that food is of no help to some, they would rather have the money. Well, no problem with this, it does not contradict the original ruling. Rather, pay your zakaat in food item and then do voluntary sadaqah by adding a few £, € or $, and reach deep into your wallet and clothe the whole family new clothes for Eid and buy little toys for the children. Now, how about it? Isn't it better this way?
Understand that Zakat ul Fitr is not to enable people to buy the latest Ipod, or toys for their children nor even clothes, (regular sadaqah is for this) but it is indeed there to enable them to have food on their table for Eid and to celebrate the end of their fasting, the same as you do, and it is your own purification for you own little deficiencies in your fasting. Luxuries, you can offer them on top of the zakaat ul Fitr and may Allah reward you for your good actions...
but lets have a look at what the people of knowledge are saying about Zakat ul Fitr, in the next post Inshallah :
|Subject: Re: The Zakat ul Fitr files: what is it, when, how, where and to whom to pay it Mon Sep 14, 2009 1:16 pm|| |
Assalamou aleikoum wa rahmatoullah wa barakatou
by Shaykh Abû Bakr Jâbir al-Jaza'iry It Ruling
Zakat-ul-Fitr is a Sunnah that is obligatory upon every individual Muslim. This is due to Ibn ‘Umar’s statement, may Allah be pleased with him:
|“The Messenger of Allah made Zakat-ul-Fitr obligatory during Ramadhan as one Sa’ of dried dates or one Sa’ of barley upon the slave and the free man, the male and the female, and the young and the old of the Muslims.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) |Its Wisdom
From the wisdom of Zakat-ul-Fitr is that it purifies the fasting soul from the effects of useless, non-beneficial speech (or acts) and obscene speech (or behavior). Likewise, it keeps the poor and needy people from having to beg on the day of ‘Eid. Ibn ‘Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, said:
The Prophet saws also said:
|“The Messenger of Allah made Zakat-ul-Fitr obligatory as a purification for the fasting person from useless, non-beneficial speech (or acts) and obscene speech (or behavior), and as a means of feeding the poor.” (Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah, and it was graded Sahih by Al-Hakim).  |
The Amount and Type of Food
|Keep them (the poor) from having to beg on this day. (Al-Bayhaqi - and its chain of narration is weak) |
The amount of Zakat-ul-Fitr is a Sa' and a Sa’ is four Amdad (cupped handfuls). It is given from the usual staple foods of the people of the land, whether it is wheat, or barley, or dried dates, or rice, or raisins or cheese. This is due to the statement of Abu Sa’id (may Allah be pleased with him):
|“When the Messenger of Allah was among us, we used to give Zakat-ul-Fitr on behalf of every person, young and old, free or owned (i.e. a slave), as a Sa’ of Ta’am, or a Sa’ of cheese (dried milk) or a Sa’ of barley or a Sa’ of dried dates, or a Sa’ of raisins.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) |It is Only given from items of Food
It is obligatory that Zakat-ul-Fitr be given from the types of food. Money should not be given in place of it, except if there is a pressing need to do so. This is because it is not confirmed that the Prophet gave money for it in place of food. It has not even been reported from the Companions that they gave money (for Zakat-ul-Fitr). Its Time
Zakat-ul-Fitr becomes obligatory with the coming of the night of the ‘Eid (i.e. the night before the 1st of Shawwal). It is to be paid a day or two before the day of the 'Eid, as Ibn ‘Umar used to do, and the time of giving generosity, which is from the time Fajr comes in on the day of the ‘Eid until just before the prayer (Salat-ul-’Eid). This is due to the Prophet’s saws command that Zakat-ul-Fitr be given before the people come out to the prayer. Ibn ‘Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, said:
|“The Messenger of Allah made Zakat-ul-Fitr obligatory as a purification for the fasting person from useless, non-beneficial speech (or acts) and obscene speech (or behavior), and as a means of feeding the poor. So whoever gives it before the prayer (Salat-ul-’Eid), then it is an accepted Zakah, and whoever gives it after the prayer (Salat-ul-’Eid), then it is a form of charity (Sadaqah).” (It has been mentioned previously.) |
The time of making it up (i.e. paying it late) is after the ‘Eid prayer and anytime thereafter. Zakat-ul-Fitr may be given during this time (following the prayer) and it is acceptable, however it is disliked (to give it late).
The recipients of Zakat-ul-Fitr are the same as the recipients of the general Zakat, except that the poor and the needy have more right to it than the other people who have a share in it. This is based upon the Prophet’s statement:
|Keep them from having to beg on this day. (Al-Bayhaqi and its chain of narration is weak) |
Therefore, it is not given to other than the poor, unless there are no poor people or their poverty is light (i.e. not severe) or the need of others besides them, who have a share in it, has become severe.
1. It is permissible for a wealthy woman to pay her Zakah to her husband, who is poor, however the opposite is not permissible. This is because the maintenance of the woman is obligatory upon the man and the maintenance of the man is not obligatory upon the woman.
2. Zakat-ul-Fitr is not required from one who does not possess a day’s worth of food, as Allah does not burden a soul except with what it can bear.
3. Whoever possesses more than a day’s worth of food and he gives it (as his Zakat-ul-Fitr), this will suffice him. This is due to Allah’s statement:
|So fear Allah as much as you are able. (64:16) |
4. It is permissible to give the charity of an individual to a number of people, distributing it among them, and it is permissible to give the charity of a number of individuals to one individual, as the giving of charity is mentioned in the Shari’ah in unrestricted terms.
5. The Zakat-ul-Fitr is obligatory upon the Muslim in the land in which he resides.
6. It is not permissible to transfer Zakat-ul-Fitr from one land to another, except if there is a pressing need. Its Situation is the same as Zakah.
 The remainder of it states: “So whoever gives it before the prayer (Salat-ul-’Eid), then it is an accepted Zakah, and whoever gives it after the prayer ( Salat-ul-’Eid) , then it is charity (Sadaqah) from the charities.”
 The meaning of Ta’am is millet or corn.
Taken from the Book Minhaj al-Muslim Volume 2, published by Dar-us-Salam publications
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Monday 24 Ramadân 1430 AH / 14th September 2009 CE
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|Subject: Re: The Zakat ul Fitr files: what is it, when, how, where and to whom to pay it Mon Sep 14, 2009 2:01 pm|| |
None of us can escape not saying a few misplaced words during Ramadhan. It is from the Mercy of Allah SWT that He prescribed on us Zakat al-Fitr to get rid of the bad effect of vain talks and useless speeches in Ramadhan, as well as to feed the needy on the day of `eid and make him happy on that day as well.
Zakat al-Fitr is mandatory on every Muslim on his behalf and on the behalf of all people he is in charge of.
"The Muslim gives it for himself and for those whom he takes care of-. young or old, male or female, free or slave - due to the hadeeth of Ibn 'Umar, radiyallaahu 'anhuma: "Allah's Messenger ordered Sadaqatul-Fitr on behalf of the young and the old, and the free and the slave - whom you provide for."
[ad-Daraqutni and al-Baihaqui : Hasan]"(1)
Also Ibn `Umar said "Allah's Messenger, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, obligated Zakat al-Fitr [for Ramadan upon the people]".[
Bukhari and Muslim]
Another Hadith gives more details :
Ibn 'Umar said, "The Prophet made incumbent on every male or female, free man or slave, the payment of one Saa` of dates or barley as Sadaqat-ul-Fitr (or said Sadaqa-Ramadan)." The people then substituted half Sa' of wheat for that. Ibn 'Umar used to give dates (as Sadaqat-ul-Fitr). Once there was scarcity of dates in Medina and Ibn 'Umar gave barley. 'And Ibn 'Umar used to give Sadaqat-ul-Fitr for every young and old person. He even used to give on behalf of my children. Ibn 'Umar used to give Sadaqatul-Fitr to those who had been officially appointed for its collection. People used to give Sadaqat-ul-Fitr (even) a day or two before the 'Eid.
Ibn'Abbaas, radiyalloahu'anhu, that he used to say: "He who brings wheat it will be accepted from him, whoever brings barley it will be accepted from him whoever brings dates it will be accepted from him, whoever brings rye it will be accepted from him, and whoever brings raisins it will be accepted from him, and I think he said : whoever brings (barley) gruel it will be accepted from him.
[Ibn Khuzaimah with a Sahih Isnad]Zakat al-Fitr has to be given in the form of food
. That is the practice of the Messenger of Allah salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam and the practice of the Sahabah. It also has to be given to the poor before Eid Prayer.
Ibn `Abbas reported that the Messenger of Allah, salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, enjoined Zakat al-Fitr on the one who fasts to shield one's self from any indecent act or speech and for the purpose of providing food for the poor. It is accepted as zakah for the person who pays it before the `Eid Salah, and it is a mere sadaqah for one who pays it after the Salah" [Abu Dawud, an-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah : Hasan]
It can be given a day or two before Eid as well and [Shaikh Ali Hasan and Shaikh Salim al-Hilali say :] it is from the Sunnah that there should be a person with whom it is gathered just as the Prophet entrusted Abu Hurairah, radiya Allahu 'anhu, who said: "Allah's Messenger entrusted me to look after the zakah of Ramadan."
Also, Ibn 'Umar, radiya Allahu 'anhu, used to give some of it to those who would collect it - and they were those whom the imam sent to collect it, and that was a day or two before `Eidul-Fitr. It is reported by Ibn Khuzaimah by way of 'Abdul-Waarith from Ayyoob: I said: "When did Ibn 'Umar used to give the saa'?" He said: "When the collectors had finished." I said: "When did the collectors finish?" He said: "A day or two days before the day of Fitr."
As for its wisdom, "It has been prescribed by the Wise Legislator as a purification for those who fasted, from loose and indecent talk, and to feed the poor Muslims so that they have enough provision for that day - as is shown by the previous hadeeth of Ibn 'Abbaas, radiya Allahu 'anhuma."
(1) From the book "Fasting in Ramadan as observed by the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam" by Shaikh Ali Hasan and Shaikh Salim al-Hilali
This article was taken from : http://www.qss.org/articles/ramadan/9.html
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The Zakat ul Fitr files: what is it, when, how, where and to whom to pay it