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Humble, modest and loving, Prophet Muhammad (saw) was known for his generosity. As ‘the most generous of all the people…’ (Bukhari), the Prophet (saw) continuously encouraged his followers to help others, calling upon Muslims to support their families, neighbours, communities and the wider ummah. Emphasising the importance of charity, the Prophet (saw) said:
Generosity is near to Allah, near to Paradise, near to the people, and far from the Hellfire…’ (Tirmidhi).
To become closer to Allah (swt), we look to Prophet Muhammad (saw) as a guide, teacher and example of what a good Muslim should be. So, on our path towards Allah, let us look at the final Messenger of Allah for inspiration on how to help our brothers and sisters in need worldwide.
1. He fed the poor
As Muslims, we are urged to help ensure the poor and needy do not go hungry. Prophet Muhammad (saw) said:
‘He is not a Muslim whose stomach is full while his neighbour goes hungry.’ (Muslim).
2. He gave water to the needy
Water is our source of life and a blessing from Allah (swt). With water, we nourish, clean and refresh our bodies, cleanse our souls through whudu and ghusl and remember the hardships and struggles of Hajar (ra) when we perform Hajj. Allah (swt) in the Holy Qur’an tells us: ‘By means of water, we give life to everything’ (21:30). Without water, we cannot survive. Prophet Muhammad (saw) therefore taught us to not waste water and to share this precious source with others:
‘The best form of charity is to give someone water (to drink).’ (Ibn Majah).
3. He helped orphans
Children are the future and must be nurtured, protected and encouraged in their journey to adulthood. Parents are responsible for providing financially for their children and giving them both emotional support and the correct spiritual and moral education to help them grow up to be healthy, wise and strong. Yet imagine those children who do not have the financial and emotional stability of a father and/or mother? As Prophet Muhammed (saw) teaches us, we must protect and support vulnerable orphans:
‘Blessed is the wealth of the Muslim, from which he gives to the poor, the orphan and the wayfarer.’ (Muslim).
4. He took care of widows
Prophet Muhammad (saw) encouraged his Ummah to look after our widowed sisters who remain emotionally and financially vulnerable following the death of their husband:
‘The person who assists and takes care of the widow… is like the person who is striving in the path of Allah…’ (Bukhari; Muslim).