What is the wisdom behind the fact that zakah is mentioned after prayer in the Quran?

Details of the Question

What is the wisdom behind the fact that zakah is mentioned after prayer in the Quran?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Prayer is “the pillar of the religion” and zakah is the bridge of Islam. They are two divine principles, one of which guards the religion and the other of which guards law and order. Therefore, they are connected to each other.

The following sound hadith is reported from the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) about zakah, which includes all kinds of solidarity and assistance: “Zakah is the bridge of Islam.” (al-Mundhziri, at-Targhib wat-Tarhib, 1:517) That is, Muslims help one another by passing over the bridge of zakah. For, zakah is a means of help. The bridge that ensures law and order in social life of humans is zakah. The existence of social life in humans originates from mutual assistance. The antidote and drug to the misfortunes originating from the rebellions, insurrections and conflicts that impede human progress is mutual assistance.

Yes, there is vast wisdom in the obligation of zakah and prohibition of usury and interest, and lofty benefits and extensive mercy.

Yes, if you take a historical look at the page of the world and study the evils of humans that stain that page, you will see that the underlying reasons for all insurrections, corruptions and immorality are only two sayings:

The First: “Once I am full, what is to me if others die of hunger?”

The Second: “You work so that I can eat, and you toil so that I can rest.”

Only zakah can eliminate the first saying that shake the world of humanity and bring it to the brink of demolition.

What eradicates the second saying that drag humanity to general disasters, communism and that destroy human progress and law and order is the prohibition of usury and interest.

Consider this: The order of society is dependent on there being no vacuum between the classes of people. The upper classes should not grow distant from the lower classes, nor the rich from the poor, to the extent that the lines of communication are broken between them. What ensures the communication between those classes is zakah and mutual assistance. However, a tension occurs between the classes, the link of communication is cut off and no ties of kinship remain because the obligatory payment of zakah and the prohibition of usury and interest are neglected. Therefore, instead of respect, obedience, and love ascending from the lower classes to the upper classes, shouts of revolution shrieks of envy and cries of hatred and revenge arise. Similarly, instead of kindness, generosity, and favors descending from the upper to the lower classes, fires of tyranny and oppression, and volleys of insult rain down on them.

While the qualities of the elite should be the cause of modesty and compassion, unfortunately they give rise to pride and arrogance. And while the powerlessness and poverty of the poor necessitate kindness and benevolence, they lead to slavery and degradation. If you want a witness for what I say, take a look at the civilized world; there you will find as many witnesses as you wish.

To sum up, the only means of reconciliation and the establishment of communication between the classes is the acceptance of zakah, sadaqah and donations as a far-reaching rule by the administration of society. (see Said Nursi, İşârâtü'l-İ'câz – the chapter of al-Baqara, the interpretation of verse 3)

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