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136) Striving for a Halaal Livelihood

18 September 2016

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

الشاخِصُ في طَلَبِ الرِّزْقِ الحَلالِ كالمُجَاهِدُ في سَبِيْلِ الله 

 (Amirul Mumineen SA)

Whosoever sets out to seek a halaal livelihood, is like one who fights in the path of God.

Shari’at not only prescribes the tenets of prayer and fasting but also includes the demands and duties of life in this world. The beauty of Islamic Shari’at is that everyday necessities are woven into the realm of religion – our commitments in this world are not separated from our religious responsibilities. This philosophy is reflected in Amirul Mumineen’s kalaam (quoted above), “Whosoever sets out to seek a halaal livelihood, is like one who fights in the path of God.”

The effort to earn a living is in and of itself a part of religion - so long as the individual is seeking his/her livelihood based on the principles of Shari’at and earns halaal ni rozi. The parallel drawn between “one who strives for a halaal livelihood” with “one who battles in the path of Allah,” is a strong statement about the high level of importance of the former. By elevating the effort to earn halaal ni rozi in this manner, our Hudaat Kiraam emphasize the importance of hard work to provide for oneself and one’s family.  The parallel drawn with the “battle in the path of Allah” is also interesting because it shows an understanding and appreciation for how difficult it is to earn a livelihood, halaal ni rozi. By equating the two, Amirul Mumineen implies that the effort in the earning a livelihood is comparable to the toils of battle.   

A man once came to Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq SA and asked him to pray that he would earn without any effort.  The Imam replied that he would only pray for him once he went out and toiled in the heat of the sun. Amirul Mumineen SA himself cultivated his farmland and personally oversaw the work, even in times of burning heat. Amirul Mumineen’s Dai, Syedna Fakhruddin TUS, also cultivates farmland and personally oversees the work.  His efforts set a high example for the importance of hard work and toil for Mumineen.

Syedna TUS also guides Mumineen as to what is halaal – the most important qualification in Amirul Mumineen’s kalaam. Striving for a livelihood that is halaal is what garners divine grace (sawaab). As our Hudaat Kiraam encourage us to make every effort to earn a halaal livelihood, they also show us what is halaal and what is haraam. It is in this spirit that Syedna Taher Fakhruddin TUS gave raza for the publication of the “Islamic Finance Series.” The series explains how the principles of Fatimid Tayyibi finance apply in today’s world. It shows how Mumineen can fully utilize the financial facilities available today for their business and financial needs within the realm of halaal, within the realm of Shari’at. The series is based on Shehzada Dr Abdeali Bhaisaheb Saifuddin’s PhD thesis which he wrote with the raza and doa of the 52nd Dai al-Mutlaq Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA. The second article in the series “How to Avoid Riba (Interest) in Modern Financial Dealingsis published this week. 

Syedna al-Mo’ayyad al-Shirazi RA has said that one who is lazy in his efforts to seek a sustenance in this world will be even lazier in earning the sustenance for the Hereafter. May Allah Ta’ala grant us the inspiration and strength to strive for our sustenance here and the Hereafter. May we follow the guidance of our Hudaat Kiraam to strive for a halaal livelihood and garner the sawaab of battle in the path of Allah.