Lesson – 74
Prayer, Charity and Unity
Surah ‘Al-‘Baqarah (The Cow) – Chapter – 2)
Stage – 1, Verse – 43 of 286, Section – 5 of 40 (Part - 1)
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
43. And establish worship and pay the poor-due, and bow your heads with those who bow (in worship).
43. Wa ‘aqiimus-Salaata wa ‘aatuz-Zakaata warka-‘uu ma-‘ar-raaki-‘iin.
‘Az-Zakaata – (the poor-due), zakaat means “to increase”. Like this zakaatuz-zara’ means “husbandry increased”. By expending wealth on lawful works and paying to the deserving people for the cause of Allah Almighty, it increases. Therefore, after passing away a year, giving a prescribed portion of the wealth in the name of God Almighty, is called Zakaat. Other meanings of it are chastity, purity and cleanliness. Really after paying Zakaat (the Poor-due), the property becomes pure. Salaat (prayer) and Zakaat are two such duties, which remained part of worship always in every religion; however, difference remained among their forms and propositions.
‘Arka-‘uu – (Bow), this word has come out from Rakuu’, which means “to lean, to bow”. As it is a part of the Prayer, so it is also used usually for the whole prayer. Sometimes, the word ‘Asjuduu (fall prostrate) has come along with it too.
God Almighty commanded the Jews to correct at first their faith and belief at the time of inviting them unto Islam, and that they should produce the real teachings of God before the people in its original form, and not to mix up (neither reduce nor increase) anything with it at their own.
Now they are being taught for actions. So, it is commanded that they should form a habit themselves for offering prayers, perform this duty punctually and regularly. The prayer is the most superior form of worship from entire other bodily worships and the best way of recognizing God Almighty and pleasing to Him.
After the prayer, they are being instructed that they should pay Zakaat (the poor-due) in accordance with the rules every year from their wealth. They should pay a prescribed part of their wealth (2.5%) every year to the poor, meek, deserving and needy people for the sake of God Almighty. They should expend the wealth given by Allah Almighty on useful public works of welfare.
The Jews were very rich because maximum people of them were merchants and artificers, so it was dangerous for them that boundless love for wealth might be born in their hearts. Its remedy is attainable with offering prayers and giving Alms and poor-dues to the poor and needy people with sympathy and knowledge about their necessities. Therefore, they were commanded that they should offer congregational prayers in the Masjid with those who offer prayers and bow when they bow, and pay the poor-due to the deserving persons. This congregation and unity has many advantages.