[2:43] And be steadfast in Salah (prayer), and pay Zakah, and bow down with those who bow down.
(Muhammad Shirbini Khatib:) Lexically zakat means growth, blessings an increase in good, purification, or praise. In Sacred Law it is the name for a particular amount of property that must be payed to certain kinds of recipients under the conditions mentioned below. It is called zakat because one's wealth grows through the blessings of giving it and the prayers of those who receive it, and because it purifies its giver of sin and extolls him by testifying to the genuineness of his faith (al-Iqna fi hall alfaz Abi Shuja (y7), 1.183).)
Zakat is obligatory:
Non-Muslims & Apostates:
are not obliged to pay zakat, nor apostates from Islam (murtadd, def:o8) unless they return to Islam, in which case they must pay for the time they spent out of Islam, though if they die as non-Muslims their property is not subject to zakat(N:because their property is considered to belong to the Muslim common fund (bayt al-mal) from the moment such people leave Islam).
Guardian of a child or insane person:
The guardian of a child or insane person is obliged to pay zakat from their property (N: if they owe any ). It is a sin for the guardian not to pay the zakat due on their property, and when the child or insane person becomes legally responsible (O: upon reaching puberty or becoming sane), he is obliged to pay the amount that his guardian neglected to pay (O: of zakat in the past).
Zakat is due from the owner of property that has been:
If all or part of one's property is destroyed after having been in one's possession a full year and after it was possible to have paid zakat on it (O: by there being both property and recipients), then one must pay the zakat due on both the remainder and the property destroyed.
There is no zakat on work animals, for example, those trained to plow or bear loads (O: since the purpose in having them is utility, like clothes or household furnishings, and is not production).
Grazing means they have been grazed on open range pasturage(O: open range excluding pasturage growing on land that a person owe (A: as it would then be considered fodder)). If the livestock have been given fodder for a period long enough that they would have been unable to survive had they not eaten during it, then there is no zakat on them, though if fed with it for less than such a period, then this does not affect the necessity of paying zakat on them. (A: There is no zakat on cattle that have been solely fed fodder or grain, even if they could have otherwise been grazed.) (n: It is religiously more precautionary (def: c6.5) and of greater benefit to the poor to follow Imam Malik on this question. Malik holds that zakat is obligatory whenever one has possessed a zakatpayable number of livestock for a year, whether or not they are work animals, and whether they have been grazed on open pasturage or fed with fodder for the entire year (al-Sharh al-saghir ala Aqrab almasalik ila madhhab al-Imam Malik(y35), 1.592).)
The zakat due on 40 head is a two-year-old female that has entered its third year (A: a male will not suffice).
The zakat on 60 head is 2 yearling males. Zakat on additional numbers is figured in the same way:
on 30 head, a yearling male, and on 40 head, a two-year-old female (N: according to which of the two alternatives accommodates the last 10 head (dis:h2.6)).
There is no zakat on fruit except for raw dates and grapes (O: the zakat on grapes being taken in raisins, and on dates, in cured dates). There is no zakat on vegetables. Nor is there zakat on seasonings such as cumin or coriander (O:since the aim in using them is preparation of food, not nourishment).
Otherwise, one is not obliged.
Zakat is not taken from grain until it has been winnowed (O: made free of straw), nor from fruits until they are dried (n: made into raisins and dates).
The produce for the entire year (N: i.e the agricultural year) is added together in calculating the zakat minimum (N: when, for example, the season's first crop alone is less than the zakat minimum). When one crop is harvested after another-due to varietal differences or the location of the two fields-in the same year, and of the same kind of crop (n: such as spring wheat and winter wheat), zakat is payed from them as if they were a single quantity. Different varieties of grain are also calculated additively when harvested at the same time, though the fruit or grain of a different year. Grapes are not calculated cumulatively with dates, nor wheat with barley (O: as they are different from one another).
If a crop has been raised without irrigation for part of the year and irrigated for part of it, then the zakat is adjusted (O: according to the period, meaning how much of the time the fruit or crops were growing). (N: It is more reliable to consult agricultural experts as to how much of the crop's water came from rain and how much came from irrigation. If 50 percent of the water came from each, for example, one would pay 7.5 percent of the crop as zakat, as this is the mean between the above two percentages.)
The zakat-payable minimum for silver is 592-9 grams, on which 1408225 grams (2.5 percent) is due.
There is no zakat on less that this.
(N: One must pay zakat (n: 2.5 percent) on all money that has been saved for a year if it equals at least the market value of 592.9 grams of silver (n:that is current during the year). While there is a considerable difference between the value of the gold zakat minimum and the silver zakat minimum, the minimum for monetary currency should correspond to that of silver, since it is better for the poor.)
There is no zakat on the trade goods if (non-(c) above) the owner acquired them by estate division or received them as a gift, or if (non-(d)) he acquired them by purchase but at the time did not intend using them for trade.
But the year of the merchandise's possession is considered to have begun at the moment of purchase if:
It is not a condition that the value of the trade goods amount to the zakat minimum except at the end of the year(O: not at the beginning, middle, or during the whole of the year).
h5.4 If trade goods are exchanged for other trade goods during the course of the year, this does not
interrupt their possession (O: because zakat on merchandise is based on the value, and the value of the
previous merchandise and the new merchandise is the same, so the year of its possession is not
interrupted by merely transferring it from one set of goods to another), though the zakat year of the
funds which a professional money changer exchange, for other funds is interrupted by each exchange (N:
and he pays no zakat as long as he keeps changing his business capital).
h5.5 If merchandise is sold during the zakat year at a profit and its price is kept until the end of the
year, then zakat on the merchandise's original value is paid at the end of that zakat year, but the zakat on
the profit is not paid until the profit has been possessed for a full year.
(n: A second position in the Shafi'i school is that the zakat on the profit is simply paid in the current
zakat year of the merchandise, just as one pays zakat on the offspring of livestock (dis:h2.7) in the
current year of their mothers (Mughni al-muhtaj ila ma'rifa ma'ani alfaz al-Minhaj (y73), 1.399).)
H.6.0 ZAKAT ON MINES AND TREASURE TROVES
h6.1 A zakat of 2.5 percent is immediately due on:
(a) the zakat minimum or more of gold or silver (def:h4.2) (O:gold or silver excluding anything else,
such as iron, lead, crystal, turquoise, cornellian, emerald, antimony, or other, on which there is no
(b) extracted from a mine (O: i.e a site at which Allah has created gold or silver) located on land
permissible for the miner to work or owned by him;
(c) and that this amount of ore has been gathered by working the site one time, or several times
uninterrupted by abandoning or neglecting the project.
The zakat is only paid after the ore is refined into metal.
If the person stops working the site for a justifiable reason, such as to travel (O: not for recreation,
but for something such as an illness) or to fix equipment, then he adds (O: the ore collected after the
interruption to that collected before, in calculating the zakat minimum).
Ore found on someone else's land belongs to the owner of the land.
ZAKAT ON TREASURE TROVES
h6.2 An immediate zakat of 20 percent is due when one finds a treasure trove that was buried in pre-
Islamic times (N: or by non-Muslims, ancient or modern) if it amounts to the zakat minimum (def: h4.2)
and the land is not owned. If such a treasure if found on owned land, it belongs to the owner of the
land. If found in a mosque or street, or if it was buried in Islamic times, it is considered as a lot and
found article (def: k27).
h7.0 THE ZAKAT OF 'EID AL-FITR
WHO MUST PAY IT
h7.1 The zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr is obligatory for every free Muslim, provided:
(a) that one has the necessary amount (O: 2.03 liters of food);
(b) and that on the night before the 'Eid and on the ~Eid itself, this is in excess of what one needs to
feed oneself and those whom one is obliged to support (def:m12.1), what one needs to clothe them, and
in excess of one's debts and housing expenses.If one's excess amounts to only part of the required zakat, one
must pay as much of it as one has.
PAYING THE ZAKAT OF 'EID AL-FITR FOR ONE'S DEPENDENTS
h7.2 Someone obligated to pay the zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr must also pay it for every person he is obliged
to support, such as his wife and family (O: e.g. his young son, grandson, father, or mother), if they are
Muslim and if he has enough food (O: 2.03 liters per person above his own expenses and theirs), though
he is not obliged to pay it for his father's wife when supporting his father because of the father's financial
difficulties, even though he is obliged to support her (dis: m12.5).
h7.3 If one is obligated to pay the zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr but only has enough to pay part of it, then one
begins by paying one's own, then that of one's wife, young child, father, mother, and then one's adult son
(O: without an income, as when he is chronically ill or insane, for otherwise one is not obligated to
h7.4 A wealthy woman married to a man too poor to pay her ~Eid al-Fitr zakat is not obliged to pay
her own (A: though it is sunna for her to pay this and all forms of zakat to her husband, even if he
spends it on her).
h7.5 The zakat of ~Eid al-Fitr becomes obligatory when the sun sets on the night before the 'Eid (n:
meaning on the evening of the last day of Ramadan).
WHAT TYPE OF FOOD MUST BE GIVEN
h7.6 The zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr consists of 2.03 liters of the main staple of the area in which it is given,
of the kinds of crops on which zakat is payable (def:h3.2). (A: If the main staple is bread, as in many
countries, only wheat may be given, and is what is meant by the expression giving food here and in all
texts below dealing with expiations (e.g. j3.22(2)).) (N: The Hanafi school permits paying the poor the
wheat's value in money, both here and for expiations.) It is permissible to give the best quality of the
staple food of the area, but not to give less than the usual quality (O: such as by giving barley where
wheat is the main staple).
h7.7 It is permissible to give the zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr (N: to deserving recipients (dis: h8.26)) anytime
during Ramadan, though the best time is on the day of 'Eid al-Fitr before the prayer (def:f19.1). It is
not permissible to delay giving it until after the day of the 'Eid (O: that is, one may give it until sunset),
and is a sin to delay until after this, and one must make it up (N: by paying it late).
h8.0 GIVING ZAKAT TO DESERVING RECEIPIENTS
h8.1 It is unlawful to delay paying what is due from a zakat-payable amount of property when:
(a) it has been possessed for one year;
(b) one can find the )O: eight) categories (O: of eligible recipients, or some of them) so as to be able
to pay it;
(c) and the property is present (O: within 81 km./50 mi.);
unless one is awaiting a poor person more deserving than those present, such as relative (O: of the
person paying zakat whom he is not obliged to support), a neighbor, or a more righteous or needy
person (O: than those present. Under these circumstances it is not unlawful to delay giving it because
there is an excuse, unless withholding it involves considerable harm for those present).
PAYING ZAKAT IN ADVANCE
h8.2 Zakat, on all types of property that a year's possession of the zakat minimum makes giving
obligatory, may be payed for the current year (A: alone) before the year's end whenever the property
owner possesses the zakat minimum.
This zakat in advance is considered valid only when the year ends and:
(a) the recipient it still among the types eligible for zakat (O: meaning, for example, that his state has
not changed from poverty to wealth);
(b) the zakat giver is still obligated to pay it;
(c) and the property is still as it was (O: i.e. the zakat minimum still exists and has not been destroyed
or sold). The zakat in advance is not valid if (N: before the end of the year):
(1) (non-(a) above) the poor person who accepted it dies, or becomes financially independent for
some other reason than having accepted the zakat;
(2) (non-(b)) the giver dies;
(3) or (non-(c)) the property diminishes to less than the zakat minimum by more than the amount
given in advance (O: such as when the giver takes out 5 dirhams as zakat in advance from 200 dirhams,
but his holdings are subsequently reduced by 10 (N: to 190 dirhams, which is less than the zakat
minimum)), even when this reduction is because of sale.
When the zakat in advance is not valid, the giver may take it back if he has explained that the money
has been given in advance (O: by merely having said, "This is my zakat in advance," or if the recipient
knows it). If what was given as zakat still exists, the recipient gives it back together with any increment
organically connected with it, such as additional weight gained by a head of livestock while in the
recipient's possession. But the property owner is not entitled to take back an increment that is not
organically connected to the zakat, such as its offspring (O: born from the animal while in the recipient's
If the zakat given in advance no longer exists, then the giver is entitled to take back a substitute (O:
whether it be the substitute for a commodity that is fungible (mithli, def: k20.3 (1)), such as silver
dirhams, or whether for a nonfungible (mutaqawwim) commodity such as sheep or goats, in which case
its price is the market value at the time the zakat in advance was accepted, not the time it ceased to
exist). After the return of the zakat in advance, the zakat giver pays the zakat from his wealth again if he is
still obliged to.
The zakat in advance that is paid from the zakat-payable amount (nisab) is considered as if still part
of the giver's property (O: only in respect to calculating whether the giver's total property equals the
zakat-payable amount. It is not actually considered as still belonging to the zakat giver, since
the recipient is entitled to dispose of it by sale or otherwise while it is in his possession). Thus, if the
zakat giver paid a sheep in advance as zakat on 120 head, and one of the sheep then gave birth to a new
lamb, the giver would now be obliged to pay another sheep (O: it being as if he owns the (N: next
highest) zakat-payable amount of 121 head (dis:h2.5)).
AUTHORIZING ANOTHER TO DISTRIBUTE ONE'S ZAKAT
h8.3 It is permissible for the zakat giver to personally distribute his zakat to eligible recipients or to
authorize an agent (wakil, def:k17) to do so.
It is permissible for the zakat giver to pay his zakat to the imam (A: i.e. the caliph (o25) or his
representative), and this is superior unless the imam is unjust, in which case it is better to distribute it
THE PRAYER OF THE RECIPIENT FOR THE ZAKAT GIVER
h8.4 It is recommended for the poor person (O: receiving zakat when the owner is distributing it) or
the agent assigned to deliver the zakat to recipients (N: if the imam has gathered it by means of agents to
distribute to the poor) to supplicate for the giver, saying, "May Allah reward you for what you have
given, bless you in what you have retained, and purify it for you."
THE INTENTION OF ZAKAT
h8.5 Making the intention of zakat is a necessary condition for the validity of giving it. The intention is
made when zakat is paid to the poor person or the one being authorized to distribute it, and one must
intend giving it as the zakat of one's property. (O: It is permissible to make the intention before paying
the money.) When the owner has made this intention, it is not necessary that the agent distributing it
also make an intention before giving it(O: because the owner's intention is sufficient, whether the agent
is an ordinary individual or is the ruler. It is also permissible for the owner to authorize an agent to both
make the intention and distribute the zakat).
h8.6 It is recommended that the imam dispatch a zakat worker, (O: to collect zakat funds from those
obliged to pay, to make this easier for them. Such an agent must be) an upright Muslim (def: o24.4)
who knows the rulings of zakat, and who is not of the Hashimi or Muttalibi clans of Quraysh.
THE EIGHT CATEGORIES OF RECIPIENTS
h8.7 It is obligatory to distribute one's zakat among eight categories of recipients (O: meaning that
zakat goes to none besides them), one-eighth of the zakat to each category.
(n: In the Hanafi school, it is valid for the giver to distribute his zakat to all of the categories, some of
them, or to confine himself to just one of them (al-Lubab fi sharh al-Kitab(y88), 1.155).)
h8.8 The first category is the poor, meaning someone who:
(a) doe not have enough to suffice himself (O: such as not having any wealth at all, or having some,
but (N: he is unable to earn any, and) what he has is insufficient to sustain him to the end of his probable
life expectancy if it were distributed over the probable amount of remaining time; insufficient meaning it
is less than half of what he needs. If he requires ten dirhams a day,for example but the amount he has
when divided by the time left in his probable life expectancy is four dirhams a day or less, not paying for
his food, clothing, housing, and whatever he cannot do without, to a degree suitable (dis:f4.5) to
someone of his standing without extravagance or penury, then he is poor - all of which applies as well to
the needs of those he must support (def;m12.1).) (N: A mechanic's tools or scholar's books are not sold
or considered part of his money, since he needs them to earn a living);
(b) and is either:
(1) unable to earn his living by work suitable to him (O: such as a noble profession befitting him (N:
given his health and social position), as opposed to work unbefitting him, which is considered the same
as not having any. If such an individual were an important personage unaccustomed to earning a living
by physical labor, he would be considered "poor". This also includes being able to do work suitable to
one, but not finding someone to employ one);
(2) or is able to earn his living, but to do so would keep him too busy to engage in attaining
knowledge of Sacred Law. (n: Nawawi notes, "If able to earn a living at work befitting him except that
he is engaged in attaining knowledge of some subject in Sacred Law such that turning to earning a living
would prevent the acquisition of this knowledge (dis: w36), then it is permissible for him to take zakat
because the attainment of knowledge is a communal obligation, though zakat is not lawful for someone
able to earn a living who cannot acquire knowledge, even if he lives at a school. What we have just
mentioned is the most correct and well known position. Darami mentions three positions concerning
someone engaged in attaining religious knowledge:
-that he deserves charity even when able to earn a living;
-that he does not deserve it;
and that if he is an outstanding student who can be expected to develop a good comprehension of the
Sacred Law and benefit the Muslims thereby, then he deserves charity, but if not, then he does not.
"Darami mentioned this in the chapter of "Voluntary Charity" (al-Majmu' (y108), 6, 190-91).)
But if one's religious devotions are what keeps one too busy to earn a living one is not considered
h8.9 Someone separated from his money by at least 81 km/50 mi is eligible for zakat. (N: This was in
the past. In our day it is fitter to say that he must be far from his money in terms of common
acknowledgement (def: f4.5).) (O: Such a person's absent property is as if nonexistent, and his "poverty"
continues until the money is present. Likewise, someone owed money on a debt not yet due who does
not have any other money is given zakat when it is distributed (N: to suffice him) until the debt becomes
h8.10 People whose needs are met by the expenditures of those who are obliged to support them such
as their husbands or families are not given zakat (N: for poverty) (O: though it is permissible for a third
party to give zakat to such a dependent by virtue of the dependent's belonging to some category other
than the poor or those short of money (def: below), as when the person belongs to a category such as
travellers needing money (h8.18) or those whose hearts are to be reconciled (h8.14)).
THOSE SHORT OF MONEY
h8.11 The second category is people short of money, meaning someone who has something to spend
for his needs but it is not enough, as when he needs five dirhams, but he only has three or four. The
considerations applicable to the poor person also apply to someone short of money (O: namely, that he
is given zakat if he cannot earn a living by work befitting him (def: h8.8(b)), or if he can earn a living but
attainment of knowledge of Sacred Law prevents his doing so; though if he is able to earn a living but
extra devotions prevent him from doing so, then he may not take zakat).
HOW MUCH THE POOR ARE GIVEN
h8.12 A person who is poor or short of money is given as much as needed of tools and materials (O: if
he has a trade, such as the tools of a carpenter) with which he can earn a living, or property with which
he can engage in trade (O: if a merchant), each according to the demands of his profession. This amount
varies, depending on whether, for example, he is a jeweller, clothier, grocer, or other.
If the recipient has no trade (O: i.e. is unable to do any work, whether for wages, by trading, or
other), then he is given enough zakat to fulfill his needs from the present till the end of his probable life
expectancy (O: based on (N: the average lifespan for someone like him in) that locality). Another
position is that such a person is given enough for just one year.
These measures are obligatory when abundant zakat funds are available ,whether the imam
distributes them or a property owner. But if there is not much zakat available (O: meaning if the owner
or imam distribtes funds that are too little to last the poor person for his probable life expectancy or for
even one year), it is distributed as is, an eighth to each category.
h8.13 The third category consists of zakat workers, the above-mentioned agents (h8.6) dispatched by
the imam. These include the person collecting it, the clerk (O: recording what the owners give), the
person who matches the payees to recipients, and the one who distributes it to recipients.
The zakat workers receive an eighth of the zakat funds. If this amount is more than it would cost to
hire someone to do their job, then they return the excess for distribution to the other categories of
recipients. But if less (N: than the cost of hiring someone), then enough is taken from the zakat funds to
make up the difference. All of this applies only if the imam (A: caliph) is distributing the zakat (O: and
has not alloted a fee to the zakat workers from the Muslim common fund (bayt al-mal)). If the property
owner is distributing the zakat (O: or if the imam has alloted the workers a fee from the common fund)
then the zakat funds are divided solely among the other categories of recipients.
THOSE WHOSE HEARTS ARE TO BE RECONCILED
h8.14 The fourth category is those whose hearts are to be reconciled. If they are non-Muslims, they are
not given zakat, but if Muslims, then they may be given it (O: so that their certainly may increase, or if
they are recent converts to Islam and are alienated from their kin).
Those to be reconciled include:
(1) the chief personages of a people (O: with weak Islamic intentions) whose Islam may be expected
to improve, or whose peers may be expected to enter Islam;
(2) or the heads of a people who collect zakat for us from Muslims living near them who refuse to
pay it, or who fight an enemy for us at considerable expense and trouble to themselves.
THOSE PURCHASING THEIR FREEDOM
h8.15 The fifth category is slaves who are purchasing their freedom from their owners. They are given
enough to do so if they do not have the means.
THOSE IN DEBT
h8.16 The sixth category is those who have debts (O: and they are of three types):
(1) A person who incurs debts in order to settle trouble (O: between two people, parties, or tribes)
involving bloodshed (O: as when there has been a killing but it is not known who the killer is, and
trouble has arisen between the two sides) or to settle trouble concerning property (O: such as bearing
the expense when trouble occurs over it) is given zakat even if he is affluent.
(2) A person who incurs debts to support himself or his dependents is given zakat if he is poor, but
not if affluent. If he incurs a debt (O: for something lawful) but spends it on something unlawful, and
then repents (O: and is felt to be sincere in this, and the original reason is known to have been something
lawful), then he is given zakat.
(3) (O: And a third type, not mentioned by the author, which (n: given persons P,Q, and R ) is when
R incurs a debt by guaranteeing (daman, def; k15) to P that Q will pay P (n: what Q owes him). If R
finds that neither he nor Q can pay, then R is given zakat (n: because he has gone into debt in order to
guarantee Q's debt), even if the reason R agreed to guarantee Q was not charity (N: but was rather that
Q would pay him back).)
THOSE FIGHTING FOR ALLAH
h8.17 The seventh category is those fighting for Allah, meaning people engaged in Islamic military
operations for whom no salary has been allotted in the army roster (O: but who are volunteers for jihad
without remuneration). They are given enough to suffice them for the operation, even if affluent; of
weapons, mounts, clothing, and expenses (O: for the duration of the journey, round trip, and the time
they spend there, even if prolonged. Though nothing has been mentioned here of the expense involved
in supporting such people's families during this period, it seems clear that they should also be given it).
TRAVELLERS NEEDING MONEY
h8.18 The eighth category is the traveller in need of money, meaning one who is passing among us (O:
i.e. through a town in Muslim lands where zakat is collected), or whose journey was not undertaken for
the purpose of disobeying Allah. If such a person is in need, he is given enough to cover his personal
expenses and transportation, even if he possesses money back home.
PAYING ZAKAT TO RECIPIENTS
h8.19 A person who qualifies as a member of two or more of the above categories is only given zakat
for one of them.
h8.20 When the (N: eight) categories of recipients exist in the town where zakat is collected, it is
unlawful and invalid to give it to recipients elsewhere (O: as it must be paid to those present if the
property owner is distributing his own zakat. The other schools of jurisprudence permit giving it
elsewhere). But if the imam (A: caliph) is distributing the zakat, he may give it to recipients in a
If the zakat giver's property is in the desert, or none of the eight categories of eligible zakat recipients
exist in his own town, then the zakat should be distributed in the nearest town.
h8.21 Each category of recipients must receive an equal share, one-eighth of the total (dis:h8.7(n:)) (A:
though one may give various individuals within a particular category more or less), except for zakat
workers, who receive only their due wage (def:h8.13).
If one of the categories does not exist in one's town, their eighth is distributed over the other
categories such that each of them gets oneseventh. If two categories of recipients do not exist in the
town, then each of the remaining categories receive a sixth of the zakat, and so on (O: such that if there
were only one category in town, all the zakat would be paid to it).
It is obligatory to give zakat to every individual member of a category if the owner is distributing
zakat and the individuals are of a limited, known number, or if the imam is distributing zakat and it is
possible to give it out person by person and include them all because of the abundance of funds.
If the owner is distributing zakat and the recipients in each category are not of a limited, known
number, then the fewest permissible for him to give to in one category of zakat workers, in which a
single person is enough.
h8.22 It is recommended to give one's zakat to relatives other than those one is obliged to support
h8.23 It is recommended to distribute zakat to recipients in proportion to their needs, giving someone
who needs 100 dirhams, for example, half of what one gives to someone who needs 200.
h8.24 It is not permissible to give zakat to a non-Muslim, or to someone whom one is obliged to
support (def: m12.1), such as a wife or family member.
h8.25 It is not valid for one to give zakat to a poor person on condition that he return it to one to pay
off a debt he owes, or to tell the recipient, "O hereby make the money you owe me zakat, so keep it for
yourself." But it is permissible:
(1) for the giver to pay his zakat (O: to a poor person who owes him money) when the giver's
intention is that the recipient should pay him back with it;
(2) for the zakat giver to tell the poor person,"Pay me the money you owe me so that I can give it to
you as zakat";
(3) or for the poor person to tell his creditor, "Give me (O: zakat) so that I can pay it back to you
(O: for the debt I owe you)";though it is not obligatory to fulfill these promises (O: meaning the outcomes
alluded to in (2) and (3) above).
h8.26 All of the above rulings concerning zakat (h8.2-25) apply to the zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr (def; h7) (O:
in details, in giving it to deserving recipients (N: the eight categories described in this section), and in
giving it in advance). It is permissible for a group of people to pool their zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr,mix it, and
collectively distribute it, or for one of them to distribute it with the others permission. (O: The author
mentions this to inform people that anyone can distribute their zakat of 'Eid al-Fitr to all categories of
recipients, no matter how little it is.)
h9.0 VOLUNTARY CHARITY
h9.1 Giving voluntary charity is recommended at all times; especially during Ramadan, before praying
for something one needs, (O: when there is an eclipse, illness, or journey,) and at all noble times and
places (O: e.g. times such as the first ten days of Dhul Hijja or the days of 'Eid and places such as
Mecca or Medina).
h9.2 It is superior to give charity to righteous people (O: meaning those who give Allah and His slaves
their due), to one's relatives (A: which is better than giving to the righteous), even those of them who
are one's enemies (A: and this is better than giving to one's friends among them), and to give from the
best of one's wealth (O: meaning that which is lawful, which is better than giving what is from a doubtful
source, or giving what is of poor quality, either of which are offensive to give as charity. It is unlawful
to give property that has been unlawfully obtained (N: if one knows its rightful owner. If not, one must
give it as charity (A: or taxes (def: p32)) to remove it from one's possession)).
h9.3 It is unlawful to give as charity money needed to support one's dependents or needed to pay a
debt that is currently due (O: because supporting one's dependents or paying a current debt are
obligatory, and obligatory acts take precedence over recommended ones).
h9.4 It is recommended to give away in charity everything one owns that is in excess (O: of personal
expenses and the expenses of those one is obliged to support), provided one can be patient with the
resultant poverty. (O: But if one cannot be patient, it is offensive to give away what is in excess of one's
h9.5 It is offensive to ask for anything besides paradise with the words "For the sake [lit. "By the
countenance (O: i.e. entity)"] of Allah," though if someone does, it is offensive not to give to him.
h9.6 It is unlawful to remind a recipient of charity that one has given him (mann, dis:p36), and it
eliminates the reward.
h9.7 (O: It is permissible to give charity to a person not in need, or to a relative of the Prophet (Allah
bless him and give him peace). It is offensive for a person not in need to accept charity,and preferable
that he avoid it. It is unlawful for such a person to accept it if he pretends to be needy, and is unlawful
for him to ask for charity.
It is permissible to give charity to a non-Muslim (n: but not zakat, as above at h8.24).)