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The psychology of giving behavior ‘Donation’ in Islam

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مَنۡ ذَا الَّذِىۡ يُقۡرِضُ اللّٰهَ قَرۡضًا حَسَنًا فَيُضٰعِفَهٗ لَهٗۤ اَضۡعَافًا کَثِيۡرَةً 

‘‘Who is he that will loan to Allah a beautiful loan which Allah will double unto his credit and multiply it many times?’’ [2:245]

It is very important to start with the above verse that teaches us the importance of generously giving donation to the poor and needy. It helps us to establish a better understanding of the psychological views that underlie charitable giving intention, which also plays an important role in the elicitation and stimulation of charitable giving behavior. Islam enjoins its followers to ‘give’ for individual and societal well-being. The three main institutionalized instruments of Islamic philanthropy and redistribution of wealth are Sadaqa (charity), Zakat (poor tax), and Waqf (trust). Giving Zakat, Sadaqah, or/and participating in Waqf is viewed as “compulsory and important charity”; it is the responsibility of those who have received their wealth from God to respond to those members of the community in need. The whole concept of wealth is considered in Islam as a gift from God. God, who provided it to the person, made a portion of it for the poor, so the poor have a right over one’s wealth. The notion of giving, especially giving and helping those in need, is so entrenched in Islam. According to By Relkhatib, the Almighty promises us that if we train ourselves to give in times of ease and hardship, our sustenance will increase. Giving awakens our souls and triggers genuine concern for the well-being of others. Research indicates that helping others lessens anxiety and increases positive feelings and feelings of satisfaction. But is this enough to explain the phenomenon of generosity? The love of good deeds is the way to happiness and the culture of giving stems from inside. People who keen to do volunteer work are always been push by their values and ethics that embodied through behaviors. And the volunteer work varies in size, shape, trends, and motives from one society to another. In terms of size, it is less in periods of stability and calm, and increases in times of disasters and wars. Then in terms of form, it may be an effort or a donation of money. In terms of direction, it may be automatic, or directed by the State in social, educational, or developmental activities; and in terms of its motives, it may be psychological, social, or political. As a result, it generates self-satisfaction, God’s blessing, people’s happiness, and societal wellbeing.

The idea of “giving culture” with its principles, dimensions, and values is considered the basis for comprehensive development in Islam. Therefore, there are several ways to promote giving behavior and donation among Muslims. One of the imperative methods of charitable behavior in Islam is creating Waqf. Literally, Waqf is derived from the Arabic word “Waqafe” which means to hold, confinement, or prohibition. Waqf means forbidding movement or exchange of something and must have perpetuity. Waqf is a financial charitable act established by withholding immovable and movable properties to perpetually spend its revenue on fulfilling public or family needs, depending on the preferences of and conditions set by the founder. Once the property is created as Waqf, it can never be given as a gift, inherited, or sold. It belongs to Allah (SWT), and the Waqf property always remains intact. Only its generated revenue is channeled to the beneficiaries. In Islamic history, we can see great pictures and useful lessons about the status of Waqf and its impact on supporting the development of the Muslim community. Awqaf were inculcated in Muslims’ culture and has been included in all walks of life, and it was a source of funding for the Muslims over the centuries, because of the large endowments, that took place during our prophet and his companions. At this point, we need to inculcate the culture of Waqf among the Muslim community and reinforce people to participate in and create Waqf.

Birth of Misguidance

The discussion was born out of a recognition that Islamophobes have spent a disproportionate amount of time and money in the think-tank world and media, leaving the Muslim community in the United States and abroad constantly held hostage by false narratives about our religion and way of life. The narratives created about Islam and the Muslim world have directly led to the enactment of discriminatory policies towards Muslims, leaving us in a perpetual state of disaster response. These narratives have directly impacted the identity and beliefs of young Muslims, themselves exhausted by false portrayals of Islam and the pressures of being Muslim.

We thinkers and clean hand-doers have extended our hands to Muslim organizations around the country and world to partner in good without charging for our content. Our goal is to provide mosques, Islamic schools, and youth groups with the resources they need to foster a strong Muslim identity. Media and policy organizations can also access reliable research they need about Islam with confidence in our rigor and representation.

We seek to be forward-thinking for the Muslim community around the world much of the pain and disaster caused by the multi-million-dollar Islamophobic think-tank industry by correcting the narrative on Islam. Islam and the Muslim world should constantly be treated with suspicion, but in pushing forward the idea that commitment to Islam in its most orthodox sense directly translates to a commitment to humanity in the most beautiful ways, ushering in a more harmonious global society.

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Giving charity is one of the best behaviors towards others as well as major obligations in Islam and the strongest character of Muslims. Giving is an ethic that was encouraged by our religion; thus, individuals in Islam are valued by their ethical behaviors in preference to what they produce. People are judged by their relationships with those who are close to them. It does not matter how much a person owns or who their father’s tribe, language, or country is.

The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said “Even a smile is charity.”

Find Signatories and ask yourself what you can donate in the service of this world like home, where we live together, but actually where we want to live together with smiles. Give smile, don’t snatch.

Be Kind to nature, you are born this way. Be Thankful, you have been given.

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