I remember my grandpa always telling me to be a hand that gives. My parents always have been generous so he told me to be like my parents.
Our generation faces different issues. Overall our living standards have jumped up and our expenses increase faster than our income. Therefore I don’t think I can ever even come close to generosity of my family.
I’m sorry I might sound like i’m bragging here but please bear with me I am going to lay myself on a platter for judgement today.
As muslims we give in 2 most common forms of charity, Sadaqah and zakat. Zakat is compulsory 2.5% of our wealth that we have to give away every year in the month of Ramadan (we can split it throughout the year) and it has some criteria for the recipient.
Sadaqah is optional (but highly encouraged) and doesn’t have any obligatory criteria.
So we do have a defined system of giving by religion.
This is a rare occasion we all came to celebrate to Pakistan and due to this sudden spread we aren’t traveling back.
This is an eye opener in plenty of ways.
Complete lockdown hasn’t been announced here as poverty is going to kill more people than virus (as stated by Prime Minister, and I partially agree). But given the situation it seems inevitable.
We are a poor country. We have our struggles and our government doesn’t secure people who can’t go out and work. Either you work or you starve. Actually we do have system and law for everything put very poor implementation and corruption spoils it.
Hiring house help is common practice, we have maids and drivers. We could see fear in their eyes.
Our maid came yesterday to take her salary as she felt she might not be able to come. We gave her full salary for the month and everyone is doing that here.
We know widows who work from home, like sticking clothes to raise kids.
The day things got serious here, there were line of deliverymen sitting on the footpath.
Near our place we have 2 old book stores. Normally I haven’t seen more than 2 people at a time there.. few days back there were none.
So if shopkeepers, maids, drivers, cleaners and daily wagers lose job, they have no option to feed their families.
This is where I see miracles happening.
People are taking out their Zakat & Sadaqah and try to reach such families.
Public is taking charge of making sure nobody starves. This is so beautiful I’m teary eyes at the moment.
Some of our friends have volunteers who check IDs and make sure grocery/food reaches the one who actually deserves.
I’m trying to point out a few things sorry it stretched.
We are told to start from the closest circle.
Charity begins at home, is not just a phrase. It’s guideline.
Guys, take out whatever you can give (after you know you won’t sendup with shortage) and start from your closest circle.
You don’t have to go to them, wire cash or order stuff to be delivered at their place, if possible.
DON’T BREAK YOUR SELF-ISOLATION.
There are ways to help, find them.
You can split your charity in stages. Honestly this is not going away so soon. If everyone gives everything now..what are we gonna do later?
Maybe split it in half. Give one half right now and other half a month later.
An undeniable economic crisis is going to hit the whole word.
Prepare for that too. And prepare to helping then as well.
Always be the hand that gives.
My debut poetry collection “Swinging Sanity” is available in paperback now!
Considering the circumstances, ebook of Swinging Sanity will available for FREE on Saturday 28th March and Sunday 29th March.