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Worship - Zakah

Purification Praying
31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42
  Zakah   Fasting   Pilgrimage  
43 44 45 46 47 48

Lesson 43

Sources of Zakah

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Main Points

        ·  Zakah, the third pillar of Islam, is obligatory on every Muslim possessing a “Nisab”, the minimum unit that necessitates Zakah. Those who deny it are considered unbelievers, and regarding those who abstain from paying it, Zakah should be taken from them by force, otherwise, they will be fought.

       · The wisdom behind Zakah is that it is the means of achieving Muslim social solidarity, purification of the self from miserliness and greed, redistribution of wealth and activation of the economy.

        ·  Kinds of wealth liable to Zakah:

a) Gold and silver, their equivalent of liquid money, trade wealth, any relevant metals or buried treasure.

b) Cultivated land crops.

c) Grazing livestock cattle - camels, cows and sheep.[1]

        ·  Zakah of gold/silver or their equivalent is 2.5% of wealth exceeding Nisab, to be paid annually. Nisab is equal to 85 grams of pure gold or 624 grams of silver.  

        ·  Zakah of trade wealth is like that of its monetary equivalent.

        ·  Zakah on a debt: if it is liable to be redeemed at any time, then it is counted with its equivalent of gold/silver and trade Zakah; if not, its Zakah of only a year is paid once it has been redeemed.

        ·  The Zakah of a buried treasure is 20% of it and should be paid once found.

        ·  The Zakah of metals is 20% like the buried treasure. As for raw gold and silver extracted from the ground, their Zakah are either like buried treasure or like gold and silver.[2]

        ·  Zakah of cultivated land crops is paid once the crop has ripened and has been harvested. Its Nisab is 612 kilos, which equals 1,346.40 lb. There is no Zakah on production that is less than this amount. If the production depends only on rainwater, or without any human labor or irrigation, the due Zakah is one-tenth of the total. If equipment and tools are used for irrigation, then the Zakah due is half of one-tenth of the total production.

        ·  Zakah on industrial production and the return of land and estates: There are two schools of thought: to consider it either as trade wealth i.e., the Zakah is 2.5%, or like cultivated crops, that is, one-tenth on the invested wealth produced without effort, or half one-tenth, if effort is exerted.[3] In another school, it is considered as trade wealth i.e. Zakah is 2.5%.

        ·   Zakah on cattle that are freely grazed:

a) There is no Zakah on camels unless there are five of them grazing freely, and they have been in one's possession for a year. When the camels are five, their Zakah is one sheep. Thus, every time they increase by five, Zakah due on them is one more sheep. However, when they reach twenty-five, due Zakah is a one-year she-camel that is starting its second year. The Zakah changes further according to the increase in camels, as detailed in the Sunnah.

b) The Nisab of cows is thirty heads, and its Zakah is equal to a one-year old calf, for up to forty heads. Afterwards, Zakah changes to be a two-year old cow, when the number reaches forty. If they increased more than that, their Zakah is a one year old calf for every thirty heads and a two-year old cow for every forty heads.

c) The Nisab of sheep and goats is forty heads and their Zakah is a six month (or more) old sheep, two heads of sheep for every 120 heads, three heads of sheep for every 200 heads, and a sheep for every hundred when the amount reaches 300 heads.


Evidence of Qur'an and Sunnah

Obligation of Zakah

Allah says:

]خُذْ مِنْ أَمْوَالِهِمْ صَدَقَةً تُطَهِّرُهُمْ وَتُزَكِّيهِم بِهَا[
(التوبة: 103)

 This means: “Take Sadaqah (alms) from their wealth in order to purify them and sanctify them with it.” (9, At-Taubah: 103)

Allah says:

]وَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلاةَ وَآتُوا الزَّكَاةَ[
(المزمل: 20)

This means: “And perform As-Salah (Iqamat-as-Salah) and give Zakah. (73, Al-Muzzammil: 20)

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:

“Islam is raised on five (pillars): The testification that there is no god but Allah, that Muhammad is His bondsman and Messenger, the establishment of prayer, the payment of Zakah, performing pilgrimage to the House of Allah (Ka`bah), and fasting during Ramadan.”
(Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:

“I have been commanded to fight against people until they testify that there is no god but Allah, that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, perform prayers and pay Zakah. If they do that, the protection of their blood and property will be guaranteed by me, except when justified by law, and their affairs (regarding truthfulness of faith) is decided by Allah.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said to Mu`adh when he sent him to Yemen:

“You will go to the People of the Scripture. So, when you reach there, invite them to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and that Muhammad is His Messenger. And if they obey you in that, tell them that Allah has enjoined on them five prayers in each day and night. And if they obey you in that, tell them that Allah has made it obligatory on them to pay Zakah which will be taken from the rich among them and given to the poor among them. If they obey you in that, then avoid taking the best of their possessions, and be afraid of the curse of an oppressed person because there is no screen between his invocation and Allah.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (may Allah be pleased with him) said:

“By Allah, I would definitely fight against him who separated prayer from Zakah, for it is the obligation upon the rich. By Allah, I would fight against them even to secure the cord (used for hobbling the feet of a camel) which they used to give to the Messenger of Allah (as Zakah).” (Reported by Al-Bukhari)

The Zakah of gold and silver:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“Nothing is incumbent on you, that is, on gold, till it reaches twenty dinars. When you possess twenty dinars and one year passes on them, half a dinar is payable. Whatever exceeds, that will be reckoned properly. No Zakah is payable on property till a year passes on it.”
(Reported by Abu Dawud)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“No Zakah is due on property mounting to less than five Uqiyahs (128 grams. It may be less or more according to different countries) (of silver).” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Zakah of buried treasure:

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“No blood money will be charged if somebody dies in a mine or in a well or is killed by an animal; and if somebody finds a treasure in his land, he has to give one-fifth of it (as Zakah).” (Reported by Al-Bukhari)

The Zakah of fruits and grains:

Allah says:

]يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا كَسَبْتُمْ وَمِمَّا أَخْرَجْنَا لَكُم مِّنَ الأَرْضِ[ (البقرة: 267)

This means: “You who believe! Spend of the good things which you have (legally) earned, and of that which We have produced from the earth for you.” (2, Al-Baqarah: 267)

Allah says:

]وَآتُواْ حَقَّهُ يَوْمَ حَصَادِهِ[
(الأنعام: 141)

This means: “Pay the due thereof (its Zakah, according to Allah's Orders (1/10th or 1/20th) on the day of its harvest.” (6, Al-An`am: 141)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“On a land irrigated by rain water or by natural water channels or if the land is wet due to a nearby water channel, `Ushr (i.e. one-tenth) is compulsory (as Zakah); and on the land irrigated by the well, half of an `Ushr (i.e. one-twentieth) is compulsory (as Zakah on the yield of the land).” (Reported by Al-Bukhari)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“There is no Zakah payable (on grain or dates) on less than five camel-loads (A camel-load is about 33 liters).”
(Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

Animals Zakah:

Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated:

“A bedouin said, ‘O Allah's Messenger! Inform me about the emigration.’ The Prophet said, ‘Wayhaka (may Allah be merciful to you)! The question of emigration is a difficult one. Have you got some camels?’ The bedouin said, ‘Yes’ The Prophet said, 'Do you pay their Zakah?' He said, 'Yes.’ The Prophet said, ‘Go on doing like this from beyond the seas, for Allah will not let your deeds go in vain.’” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“If any owner of camels does not pay what is due on him, and of his due in that (camels) is (also) to milk them on the day when they come down to water, when the Day of Resurrection comes a soft sandy plain would be set for him, as extensive as possible, (he will find) that not a single young one is missing, and they will trample him with their hoofs and bite him with their mouths. As often as the first of them passes him, the last of them would be made to return during a day the extent of which would be fifty thousand years, until judgment is pronounced among servants.” (Reported by Muslim)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“There is no Zakah payable (on grain or dates) on less than five camel-loads.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)


The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“For twenty-five camels, five sheep are to be paid. If they exceed by one, a she-camel in her second year is to be given. If there is no she-camel in her second year, a male camel in its third year is to be given, up to thirty-five. If they exceed by one, a she-camel in her third year is to be given, up to forty-five. If they exceed by one, a she-camel in her fourth year is to be given.” (Reported by Ahmad and Abu Dawud)


Mu`adh Ibn Jabal (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated:

“When the Prophet (peace be upon him) sent him to Yemen, he ordered him to take a year old male or female calf for every thirty cattle and a cow in its third year for every forty.” (Reported by Abu Dawud)

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“Regarding cattle, a yearling bull calf is payable for every thirty, and a cow in her third year for forty.” (Reported by At-Tirmidhi)


The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:

“When the herd counts forty freely grazing heads at the end of the year, its Zakah is one sheep. This is applicable until the number reaches 120, at which point, up until 200, the Zakah is two sheep. From 201 to 300, their Zakah is three sheep. When the number is above 300, one additional sheep is added for each increment of one hundred.” (Reported by Abu Dawud)