Islam is all about caring for one another and spreading love and affection. Allah has laid great emphasis on taking care of others around you, and Zakat in Islam is one example of that and is one of the five pillars. It is one of the core practices and obligations that all Muslims are obliged to fulfill. Muslims are taught to share their resources and be grateful for whatever Allah has blessed us with. Zakat is also one way of expressing your love towards Allah and thanking Him for all the blessings.
According to the zakat rules in Islam, every Muslim is obliged to pay 2.5% of the excess wealth they have. However, it is very important to understand how you should pay it, who you should pay to, and when is the appropriate time to pay the Zakat. Also, you must offer it to the ones who deserve it the most.
In this blog, we will explain all about Zakat rules in Islam; what it means to Muslims and the facts regarding Zakat that every Muslim should keep in their mind.
What is Zakat?
Zakat meaning in Islam is very simple. It refers to a charity donation that every Muslim, who has a certain amount of excess money or assets, is obliged to pay to eight different categories of people. It is also called Zakah and is one of the most significant pillars of Islam. There are five pillars of Islam and each one is of great importance to every Muslim. The eight categories of people that deserve to receive the Zakat are mentioned below:
- Fakir – it is a person who is living in extreme poverty.
- Miskin – this term refers to those who don’t have food to eat or are hungry for some reason.
- Amil – it means the person who is responsible for collecting and distributing charities or Zakat. They’re always a trustworthy person who is known to be protective in this regard.
- Riqab – it implies those who are living in captivity or have been enslaved and want to get free.
- Gharmin – those who have excessive debt are known as Gharmin.
- Ibnus Sabil – this term is used for people who are away from their homes and without enough resources. They might either be stranded or stuck in their journey.
- Muallaf – this is a person who has recently converted to Islam.
If someone gives Zakat to anyone belonging to a category that does not include the above-mentioned ones, it is not acceptable. There are many questions like if the Zakat is valid if it is used in the building of a mosque. Another thought is if zakat is acceptable if given to fund a school. The answer is that building a mosque or foundation of the school is not an eligibility criterion for zakat. In the same way, you cannot give zakat to someone as a gift whether it is a special event or not. It is only acceptable if the person truly deserves it and comes under the above-mentioned categories.
What is the Zakat Meaning?
The word ‘Zakat’ refers to purifying. Zakat meaning in Islam is to purify one’s wealth for the sake of Allah. It is a way of showing compassion to those who are less fortunate. Also, it is a way to share blessings and be more thankful to Allah. In this way, there is an equal distribution of resources, and the wealth moves from the privileged to the less fortunate. This is a great way of circulating wealth and enjoying a peaceful life.
Zakat Rules in Islam
There are some definite zakat rules in Islam to follow, which are given below:
- It is only for those who exceed or meet the criteria of Nisab and are eligible to pay Zakat.
- It is a yearly obligation and you must stay in your wealth for a full Islamic year.
- Generic donations don’t count as Zakat.
- If you exceed the Nisab, you have to donate once a year.
- It is only valid if it goes to the deserving ones.
Why is Zakat Important?
Zakat is important to purify your wealth and support the less fortunate so that they can have a better quality of life. It is a way to express your love towards Allah and humanity. Visit the Transparent Hands website or reach out if you have any other questions regarding Zakat or want to donate Zakat to help people get quality healthcare free of cost.
Everyone doesn’t need to give Zakat if they don’t meet the above-mentioned criteria. Make sure to use the zakat calculator for proper calculation of zakat on the basis of salary, savings, land, jewelry, etc.
Can a Mother Give Zakat to Her Son?
Giving Zakat to your blood relations, especially if they are your dependent, is not acceptable. Just like a husband cannot give Zakat to his wife because providing for the wife is his duty. Similarly, parents cannot give it to their children because taking care of them is their duty.
Can I Give Zakat to My Aunt?
If your aunt or uncle fits into the above-mentioned categories, they’re eligible according to Zakat rules in Islam and can receive it. As they do not depend on you financially, it is allowed for them to accept Zakat from you.
Can I Give Zakat to My Parents?
Zakat in Islam is a way of circulating wealth in society and helping the needy. That doesn’t mean you can distribute it all inside your house or with your immediate family. So, giving zakat to your parents or grandparents is an unacceptable and prohibited action because you are obliged to take care of them as a duty. You must provide for them when they get older and you can produce enough to provide for them.