NO to fund-raising dinners!
The reasons why…
1. The poor are excluded. Many cannot afford it. It is an exclusive affair for the rich and wealthy people. The poor are debarred from attending such functions because they may not be in a position to ‘afford the charity’ that would make them ‘eligible’ to entrance at these ‘prestigious’ fund-raising function. This is another (subtle) form of perpetuating class distinction in the Muslim Ummah – perpetuating the distance between the rich on one side and the poor on the other side. Yet Islam strongly encourages rich and poor to be together in all their Islamic activities.
2. Islam has strongly condemned those functions at which the poor are excluded. “The worst Walimah is that Walimah in which the poor are excluded and only the wealthy are present.” – Hadith of Rasullullah (sallallahu- alyhi-wasallam)
3. The Sawaab of the person buying the ticket for charity is diminished because charity must be given solely for the pleasure of Allah and not any other motive – not even a for bowl of soup or a plate of food or a cup of tea! A manifest mentality of ‘give something to get something’ is at play here. This destroys the spirit and Sawaab of charity. Have people stooped so low that the only thing that will motivate them to contribute to a good and noble cause of Islam is a plate of food, few morsels and crumbs of bread??
4. The Qur’an teaches us that our motive for charity should only be the pleasure of Allah and no other gain; The true Believers say about charity: “We only feed you for the pleasure of Allah, we do not seek from you any returns or any praise” – Al-Qur’an
“Way of the Kuffar”
5. Fund-raising dinners is an imitation of the ways of the disbelievers. “He who imitates the way of the disbelievers, shall be with them on the Day of Judgment” – Al-Hadith. The pious predecessors throughout the history of Islam adopted the Sunnah method of fund-raising which is both simple and full of Barakah
6. At times pupils, parents and staff are coerced through various pressure tactics, both open and covert, to buy and sell tickets – often against their will. For fear of victimization, they give in to these pressure tactics. This is both un-Islamic and unethical
7. Due to these and other factors, there is no Barakah in these functions and the contributions that come from these functions. The help of Allah moves away. This will have very adverse effects on the institution in the future
The Sunnah method of fund raising
1. For guidance in this matter, we turn to the Seerah of Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) for answers. We find that fund-raising for a valid Islamic cause is a thing which was practiced in the very era and times of Rasulullah (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam). On the occasion of the Battle of Tabuk, a general appeal for contributions to the cause of Allah’s mission (Jihad) was undertaken. It is on this occasion that Hazrat Abu Bakr (RA) outstripped Hazrat Umar (RA) by giving away all of his possessions for Islam.
2. On another occasion, some poor persons came to Madinah Shareef in a very poverty stricken condition. Nabi (sallallahu- alayhi-wasallam) was visibly moved by their condition and ordered the Sahabah (RA) to render them assistance by making generous contributions to towards their needs.
3. From the above, it is amply clear that the concept of contribution to the cause of Islam is not something new. It has existed from the very early days of Islam and is established from the Sunnah of Nabi Rasullullah (sallallahu- alyhi-wasallam). As such, we have a beautiful example to follow and emulate in the way of
Rasulullah (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) even as far as this aspect of our Deen is concerned.
“In essence, the Ummah must go back to the original, the traditional or Sunnah way of fund-raising”
4. From the seerah of Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) it is clear that fund-raising for Allah’s work was done in the most practical and sincere manner, and there is nothing to match the Sunnah way! The approach was simple and straight- forward; Nabi (sallallahu-alayhi-wasallam) would gather the Sahabah (RA) in the Masjid, address them, motivate them, recite the verses of the Qur’an to them regarding spending in the path of Allah and exhort them with various virtues. He would also lead by his own blessed example by contributing generously. This would spur the Sahabah on, young and old, men and women, who would vie with each other in contributing to Allah’s cause and reaping the rewards of the Hereafter. In this simple but effective way, Allah Ta’ala would fulfill the needs of all the missions undertaken. This traditional Sunnah method is the way that Muslims ought to follow and emulate when raising funds for a worthy Islamic cause. In essence, the Ummah must go back to the original, the traditional or Sunnah way of fund-raising (as explained earlier). This is the tried and tested method. Other forms of fund-raising contain the dangers of insincerity and being motivated by certain ‘benefits’ rather than for the pleasure of Allah and for the nobility of the cause itself. May Allah Ta’ala grant a clear and true understanding of Islamic ways at all times.
In order to raise funds for a Masjid the very activities of such an Organization should portray an Islamic image. The virtues of spending in the path of Allah (Fi Sabilillah) should be discussed urging Muslims to make voluntary financial contributions solely for the pleasure of Allah Taãla thus earning Thawaab-e-Jaariya (recurring charity) for oneself. We suggest the book Fadhaail-e-Sadaqaat by Hadhrat Sheikh-ul-Hadith, Moulana Zakariyya (Rahmatullaahi Álaihi) be consulted for this purpose.
Arranging lunches/dinners in order to raise funds is a procedure adopted by the non-Muslims which has become a startling symbol to them. Contributions in lieu of lunch or any other benefit are void of the Blessings of Allah Taãla because it is not donated solely for the pleasure of Allah Taãla.
Madrasah Arabia Islamia (Darul-Uloom Azaadville)
It should be borne in mind that the Sharaiah condems imitating and treading the ways of the non-muslims. In fact has even said: “Whoever imitates a nation is amongst them.” It is an undeniable fact that today the carnivals, fetes and “events” have become a hallmark of the non-muslims. Most if not all of the non-muslims private organisations have been and are using this method of raising money to fund their organisations, without which they embrace the doom of their organisations.
If one looks into the annals of Islamic history, it will be noted that this was never the way of, the illustrious companions, pious predecessors and also of the general muslim public. There were many ways in which and his companions used to raise money to fund Jihaad campaigns, etc. but most definitely the fund raising events of today was not amongst them.
Besides, it is events of this nature that unlimited laws of Allah Ta’aala are transgressed, of which Zina is the foremost. Merry making, family days, etc. are all in conflict with the Shariah. It is events of this nature that attract the wrath and anger of Allah Ta’aala has said, “The most loved places by Allah are the Masaajid, and the worst places according to Allah are the bazaars.” (Mishkaat P 68)
It is very unfortunate that today it is the Muslims who are patronising such events for Islamic purposes and in the name of Islam.
Furthermore, the primary draw card in these events is the entertainment. It is this fundamental point that adds to the transgression. One cannot argue that a person’s intention of going to such events is to contribute, donate or boost the sales of the organisation. But, if is sincere in his purpose, he would have and can donate the money without going there or/and in anonymity. In fact, if such people contributed their monies before-hand, it would have saved the Muslim organisations from stooping to such disgraceful ebb.
How can such funds, derived through immoral and prohibited avenues contain Barakat? How can monies accumulated with Allah’s wrath be used to please Him? Surely this is a clear act of deception.
From the above mentioned facts and explanation, we clearly understand that it is not permissible to hold such events wherein the laws of Allah Ta’aala are transgressed and which was not the way of. And that Muslims should desist from attending such events which attract Allah’s wrath. We have been Prohibited from increasing the numbers of wrongdoers and supporting them in any way.