Concept of begging in Islam
ISLAM puts great emphasis on making efforts and earning one‘s own living rather than going out ask others for it for no reason.
It also devises a well balanced Muslim society for all where everyone gets its due share. Those who are rich are directed to help out others in need through an obligatory action of charity.
The Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran: And from their properties was given the right of the needy and the deprived.
This Ayah tells us about the great standing of believers who have enough wealth in the worldly life and those who take care of the disadvantaged people through it.
The Holy Prophet (SAWW) has described the condition of actual poor people in the following words.
The poor person is not the one who goes round the people (begging them) and is dismissed with one or two morsels, and one or two dates.
The poor is that who has not enough (money) to satisfy his needs; his condition is not known to others that they may give him something in charity, nor does he beg of people.
Among many signs of a true believer is that it never complains in front of the Allah Almighty, remains thankful to Him and always maintains a state of self-satisfaction with whatever it has got.
This is because a rightful disciple of Islam knows about the temporariness of life on earth which leads to its contentment with everything the Allah Almighty has bestowed upon it throughout its existence.
The Allah Almighty says in His sacred scripture: Charity is for the poor who have been restricted for the cause of Him, unable to move about in the land.
An ignorant person would think them self-sufficient because of their restraint, but you will know them by their characteristic sign.
They do not ask people persistently [or at all]. And whatever you spend of good – indeed, the Allah Almighty knows of this.
One can obviously observe from these lines in which the Creator of the universe appreciates those of His servants who do not go out and ask others for their needs because of their self-restraint and being gratified with all they have.
For these kinds of people, the Allah Almighty has instructed the prosperous ones to help them with charity as they will conceal their misery through patience but they are the ones who actually in need of charity.
Islam has strictly forbidden from asking others for money or any other riches rather one has to earn its income by its own effort.
The Holy Prophet has described: It is better for one among you to bring a load of firewood on his back and give charity out of it and satisfy his own need and be independent of people, than that he should beg from people, whether they give him anything or refuse him.
Verily the upper hand is better than lower hand, Begin charity with your needy. Therefore, anyone who has enough capacity that it can take care of its own issues should never ask others for affluence rather it should go out, become self-determining and make a living on its own so that it might even be able to aid others.
In the end, The Holy Prophet (SAWW) has regarded the charitable person being superior to the one that is being contributed.
It means one should continue the good work of making donations to the poor for the sake of pleasing the Almighty Lord.
Allah says in the Holy Quran: So as for the orphan, do not oppress him. And as for the petitioner, do not repel him.
Asking for material goods from the rich is not allowable if this act is being done just for the sake of accumulating wealth for personal gains.
This kind of deed is strictly prohibited by the Holy Prophet for it is only a source of collecting money for quenching one‘s thirst of greed.
He who begs the riches of others to increase his own is asking only for live coals, so let him ask a little or much.
This Hadith eloquently explains about the serious consequences of asking for one‘s self-indulgence in materialistic increase.
But not every person is asking for something deliberately without having much reason behind doing so.
The Holy Prophet (SAWW) has prescribed the act of requesting others help in three particular circumstances which are described in the following Hadith:
One who has undertaken a pledged money for reconciliation between two persons, for him begging is permissible till he pays that off, after which he must stop it; A man whose property has been destroyed by a calamity which has smitten him, for him begging is permissible till he gets what will support life; And a person who has been smitten by poverty the genuineness of which is confirmed by three intelligent members of his people.
For him begging is permissible till he gets what will support him. In short, begging is not a desirable action according to the religion of peace, but only allowed in severe form of need.
The rich also have the responsibility to search for such deprived people to help them through charity in order to relieve them from their misery.