Tuesday 11 October 2022

Do not squander your wealth wastefully

The distribution of wealth has never been equal to every man since time immemorial. The philosophy behind this unequal distribution of wealth is based on Divine Test which is given to both the HAVEs and HAVE NOTs. In fact, those who have wealth beyond their needs are tested more for they are tested whether they squander their wealth for own comforts and spend it wastefully or do they give charities to the HAVE NOTs to help balance out the equation between those who have and those who do not have.

Likewise, there is a test for the poor: Whether they remain patient and continue to await the Divine help and till that they remain contended and pass the test. While there are others who get disheartened by limited means and choose evil ways to rob, cheat and embazzle to make ends meet.

The 26th verse of Surah 17 Al Israa (The Night Journey) is about taking care of near and dear ones and not to be wasteful in spending their wealth for it is needed by those around us, trying hard to sustain their lives:

وَاٰتِ ذَا الۡقُرۡبٰى حَقَّهٗ وَالۡمِسۡكِيۡنَ وَابۡنَ السَّبِيۡلِ وَلَا تُبَذِّرۡ تَبۡذِيۡرًا‏ 
(17:26) Give to the near of kin his due, and also to the needy and the wayfarer. (iv) Do not squander your wealth wastefully,

Yusuf Ali Explanation
In the Jewish Decalogue, which was given to a primitive and hard-hearted people, this refinement of Kindness, -to those in want and to wayfarers (i.e., total strangers whom you come across) finds no place. Nor was there much danger of their wasting their substance out of exuberance. Even the command "to honour thy father and mother" comes after the ceremonial observance of the Sabbath. With us, the worship of Allah is linked with kindness-to parents, kindred, those in want, those who are far from their homes though they may be total strangers to us. It is not mere verbal kindness. They have certain rights which must be fulfilled.

All charity, kindness, and help are conditioned by our own resources. There is no merit if we merely spend out of bravado or for idle show. How many families are ruined by extravagant expenses at weddings, funerals, etc., or (as they may call it) to "obliged friends or relatives", or to give to able-bodied beggars? To no one was this command more necessary than it is to Muslims of the present day.

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
(And give his due to the near of kin) In this instance, "his due" evidently refers to the loving consideration due to one's relatives (Zamakhsharl and Razi); those of them who are in a state of want are included in the subsequent mention of "the needy" (al-miskin).

(as well as to the needy and the wayfarer) Regarding this expression, see surah {2}, note [145].

(But do not squander [thy substance] senselessly) Lit., "with [utter] squandering" (tabdhiran) i.e., senselessly and to no good purpose. It is to be borne in mind that the term tabdhir does not relate to the quantity but, rather, to the purpose of one's spending. Thus, Ibn'Abbas and Ibn Mas'ud (both of them quoted by Tabari) defined tabdhlr as "spending without a righteous purpose" or "in a frivolous (batil) cause": and Mujahid is reported (ibid.) to have said, "If a man were to spend all that he possesses in a righteous cause, it could not be termed squandering; but if he spends even a small amount in a frivolous cause, it is squandering."

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
The implication is that just as a person spends on himself the blessings bestowed upon him by God, he should also spend them on his fellow brethren after fulfilling his personal and business needs. It is evident from the Qur’ān that two things are required for a person if he is to become a true servant of God: Firstly, one’s relationship with God should be established on the right footing. Secondly, this relationship with other human beings should also be established the same way. The first thing is achieved through the prayer which is the foremost expression of one’s love for God, and the second through spending in the way of God for this is the foremost expression of one’s love for one’s fellow human beings. The reward for this spending is also God’s love because whatever one spends he has it saved in the heavens, and in the words of the Prophet Jesus (sws), his heart too remains occupied at this place, (Matthew, 6:19-21). In this verse, it is said that spending in the way of God is the right of one’s relatives, orphans and the needy which must necessarily be fulfilled. It is evident from this mention that any slackness in fulfilling this right can make a person a criminal who extorts the rights of people. Thus, at another instance, the Qur’ān (9:34-35) has clearly stated that if a person starts amassing wealth while remaining indifferent to these rights, then this is hoarding and its punishment is the fire of Hell – from which every believer should seek refuge with the Almighty.

Tafsir Qur'an Wiki:
The Sūrah proceeds to include all relatives and the need to be kind to them, adding also the needy and travelers who may find themselves in difficulty. It expands on family relations so as to include all human bonds in their broadest sense:

Give the near kin their due, and also to the needy and the travelers in need. Do not squander your substance wastefully, for the wasteful squanderers are Satan’s brothers, and Satan has always been ungrateful to his Lord. But if you must turn aside from them in pursuit of an act of kindness you hope to receive from your Lord, then at least speak to them kindly. (Verses 26-28)

The Qur’ān makes it clear that the near of kin, the needy and stranded travelers have a right against us which may only be discharged by financial assistance. This does not come as a favour which one person does to another; it is rather a duty imposed by God and associated with worshipping Him alone. When we fulfil this duty, we are only discharging our responsibility, and cultivating a close relationship between ourselves and those to whom we give. The giver has no favour against the recipient, because he is only fulfilling a duty towards God.

Having explained the above said verse in detail, you may now listen to explanation of the Ayat by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan:
May Allāh (سبحانه و تعالى‎) help us understand Qur'ān and follow the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, which is embodiment of commandments of Allah contained in the Qur'ān. May Allah help us to be like the ones He loves and let our lives be lived helping others and not making others' lives miserable or unlivable. May all our wrong doings, whether intentional or unintentional, be forgiven before the angel of death knocks on our door. 
وَمَا عَلَيۡنَاۤ اِلَّا الۡبَلٰغُ الۡمُبِيۡنُ‏ 
(36:17) and our duty is no more than to clearly convey the Message.”
That is Our duty is only to convey to you the message that Allah has entrusted us with. Then it is for you to accept it or reject it. We have not been made responsible for making you accept it forcibly, And if you do not accept it, we shall not be seized in consequence of your disbelief, you will yourselves be answerable for your actions on Day of Resurrection.

Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully. It will also help the Muslims to have grasp over social issues and their answers discussed in the Qur'an and other matter related to inter faith so that they are able to discuss issues with non-Muslims with authority based on refences from Qur'an.

May Allah forgive me if my posts ever imply a piety far greater than I possess. I am most in need of guidance.

Note: When we mention God in our posts, we mean One True God, we call Allah in Islam, with no associates. Allah is the Sole Creator of all things, and that Allah is all-powerful and all-knowing. Allah has no offspring, no race, no gender, no body, and is unaffected by the characteristics of human life.

For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Important DOs and DON'Ts from Qur'anYou may also refer to our Reference Pages: Understanding Al Qur'an and  Selected Verses from the Qur'an for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.
Tafsir References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 |

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Qur'ān from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that the exegesis of the chapters of the Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi.  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided, additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
In addition the references of other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

If you like Islam: My Ultimate Decision, and to keep yourself updated on all our latest posts to know more about Islam, follow us on Facebook

Please share this page to your friends and family members through Facebook, WhatsApp or any means on Social Media so that they can also be benefited by it and better understand Islam and the Qur'ān - Insha Allah (Allah Willing) you shall be blessed with the best of both worlds.


Post a Comment

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More