never again after to remind those given of it, or offend them,
they shall have their wage with their Lord,
and they need never be feared for,
nor shall they grieve. (2:262)
We all want to give more charity but, for some reason, we cheat ourselves out of many great opportunities to benefit others and ourselves. An easy way to give charity is to fix a percentage of our income at the beginning of the year — say, 5%, 10%, 20% or more — and give that money away throughout the year.
The Devil promises you poverty
and bids you disgrace,
while Allah promises you a mighty forgiveness from Himself
and limitless bounty,
and Allah is vast of favor, all-knowing. (2:268)
Because the nafs (ego) likes to hold onto money, the heart must first be trained with the hand. Instead of having to resist the ego hundreds of times throughout the year — “should I give, should I not give” — just decide an amount once at the beginning of the year and relax. Moreover, because the nafs likes to count, fixing a percentage at the beginning of the year lets it count. Most importantly, this method helps ensure that at least that much money will be given away.
(tr. N. Keller, “The Quran Beheld—An English Translation from the Arabic”)
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