Zakat is compulsory for rich people to give in Islam as it helps the poor people. The meanings of Zakat are 'Purification' and 'Growth' both. It purifies your assets as it is not only a form of a tax but it is a great prayer. Though it seems that after paying Zakat, there is some reduction in the assets but actually it grows the assets. Blessings upon us increase when we obey the orders of ALLAH Almighty. Now in all the Islamic countries, it is easy to observe that how Muslims help the poor people of the society. The most obvious aspect of Zakat on one side is the religious obligation and its consideration as the pillar of Islam while on the other hand, it is much beneficial to help the needy people.
Importance of the Zakat in the caliphate
Zakat is described as a pillar of Islam so that the non-believer to Zakat is not considered a Muslim. The importance of the Zakat can be considered as our first caliph Hazrat Abu Bakar Siddique once said that if anyone didn't pay zakat I will announce the Jihad against him or his tribe.
Importance of Zakat according to the Quran
As it is said many times about Namaz in the holy Quran, in the same way, and many times in the same place the instructions related to the Zakat are also given.
"And be steadfast in the prayers and practice regular charity and bow down your heads with those who bow down in worship".
"And be steadfast in the prayers and practice regular charity; to fulfill the contracts which ye have made".
In the light of these ayaat, we can understand that how much it is important in Islam.
Objectives of the Zakat
The key objective of the Zakat is to help the needy people and to reduce poverty. But it is not the only objective of the Zakat. It purifies the total assets by giving a small part of the assets in the way of the ALLAH Almighty.
If a person has as much amount of money or assets as the zakat applies to them, it becomes obligatory for him/her to pay Zakat to purify the remaining assets. The obligatory amount to pay in Zakat is just 2.5% of the total assets. It helps to get blessings of the ALLAH Almighty.
When a person sacrifices something from his assets, his attention and love towards ALLAH and his prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) increase as he/she follows their instructions from the deepest of the heart.
There are not only financial aspects of the Zakat, but there are also many spiritual aspects as well. It doesn't help people and families in need only but prevents us from calamity too. It prevents us from being greedy in nature.
In a hadith in Al-Tirmidhi, it is also said that it will save the Muslims from fire.
"The believer's shade on the Day of Resurrection will be his charity."
Another financial impact of the Zakat is that it discourages the concentration of wealth in a few hands while it strongly encourages the circulation of wealth.
It distinguishes the unique concepts of the charity of Islam from socialism and capitalism both. It is closed to the nature of a human being.