At Peace

My Lifetime Stories in blog

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Part 1: Ways to increase our earnings

Benefit of wealth

Money has always been so valuable. It is a common assumption that poor people who do not have money, live unhappy life. If we rate our life based on how many things we can buy, or how big our houses, or how branded our belongings are, then of course we asssume money should buy us all these. But happiness is not measured by having all those things.

It it not much benefit of getting RM50,000 per month, when we can't eat/drink sugary food, salty food, meat, or travel because we have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attack or kidney disease and we are constantly in and out of the hospital. Compare to 'average' people who don't have all the diseases and eat freely. Or even compare to 'poor' people who live in harmony with their surroundings, have money enough to live but no need to think about internet, tv licence, shares in the company etc.

It fits with this hadith:

There is no harm in richness, for he who has taqwa, but good health is better than being rich, for he who has taqwa. (Ibn Majah- authentic by Albani)

Of course, Islamically, with money you can gain a lot of benefit, if we use it wisely. Money should not be our purpose of life (in which as a muslim, it is to worship Allah). In the famous hadith when the poor people asked Rasulullah what can they do to supersede the charity done by the rich people. So Rasulullah prescribed the saying of Subhanallah, Alhamdulillah and Allahuakbar. However, the rich heard about this and started practicing the sayings. The poor people complained to Rasulullah again, and what did Rasulullah replied? That was the advantage of rich people- they have money to give in charity.

The fitnah of wealth

Your wealth and your children are only a trial. And Allah- with Him is a great reward. (Al-Taghabun:15)

Say: If your father, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your kindred, the wealth that you have gained, the commerce in which you fear a decline, and the dwellings in which you delight, are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger, and striving in His Cause, then wait until Allah execute His Decision. And Allah guided not the people who rebellious (disobedient to Allah). (al-Taubah:24)

And there are so many more aayat in the Quran and Hadith explaining over and over again the danger of wealth and why we have to be very cautious. We'll be asked about it certainly in the Day of Judgment. In fact, it is one of 5 questions we'll be asked:

On the Day of Resurrection, a human being's feet will not depart from his Lord until he is questioned about five things: How he consumed his lifetime, how he wore out his body, how he earned and spent his wealth and what he did in implementing what he knew. (Al-Tirmidhi - sahih by Albani)

Importance of Halal Sustenance

As in the previously mentioned hadith, not only what we do with our money is important, but how we earn them- we will be asked as well. Did we add an extra half an hour into our overtime form? Did we sleep when we are supposed to work (of course on-call is different thing altogether)? Did we use office application for personal use? Some of these things are unavoidable, but we can intentionally 'pay them back' by not claiming things we are supposed to.

How about riba'? We are so afraid to eat haram food, in case it becomes our flesh and blood. However, we forgot that riba' money that we earn, we feed our family, we use them to but things including food - certainly this should caught more of our attention than just haram food - most of it we'll secrete anyway.

Before we proceed into the actual ways of increasing our earnings, let us benefit from this last hadith, for those who are in constant feeling of inferiority due to other people's wealth:

Look at those who are below you (in status and wealth), and do not look at those who are above you, because then it is more likely that you will not trivialise the blessings of Allah upon you. (Bukhari)


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