Averting Stinginess

Know that withholding money is not considered stinginess because a person may wish to save for his future needs, future tribulations, or for his children and relatives. This is actually considered being economical, and as such it cannot be dispraised.

Rather the word ‘stingy’ is used to describe someone who does not give the obligatory rights from his wealth. Ibn ‘Umar said, ‘Whoever gives obligatory alms (zakah) is not stingy’. Also, a person who does not give what would benefit people through doing so, and would not affect themselves or barely affect them, is considered stingy.

The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:

“What disease is as incurable as stinginess!” (Recorded in al-Bukhari)

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr, may Allah be pleased with him, said: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him said:

“Be cautious of miserliness, for it has destroyed those who lived before you. It has ordered them to be stingy, they became stingy, it ordered them to sever kinship ties and they did, and it ordered them to indulge in dissoluteness and they did.” (Recorded in Ahmad)

The cure for stinginess is to contemplate, as one will then realise that poor people are also one’s brothers and sisters in Islam. One should thank the One who has favoured them with wealth by being generous to those in need. One should also reflect on the honour of generosity.

Remember that what we spend in charity remains with us in the afterlife, and what we don’t spend in Allah’s way remains here.

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