by Sister Ayesha Vadia Moola
Sayyidunaa Abu Hurairah (RadiyAllaahu ‘anhu) narrated that Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “When a man passes away, his deeds come to an end but three; (1) continuous charity, (2) knowledge from which benefit has been derived or (3) a righteous child who supplicates in his favour”. [Muslim]
When a person dies his situation has been likened to that of a drowning person. This is because he cannot improve his situation in any way, as his time for doing good deeds is now over.
Sadaqat-ul Jaariyah is that charity which has been carried out by the Believer during his lifetime, whereby he continuously receives the reward during his lifetime and even after he passes away. These actions are earned through leaving behind something that will benefit others. It is a perpetual charity likened to a bank balance in the safest treasury there is- The Treasury of Allah. No haraam (ribaa) interest, only hasanaat and ajr (rewards) accumulating every time someone benefits from what you started.
For example, You teach someone to read Qur-aan, and every time he/she read Qur-aan, you will get hasanaat (reward), even if you are deceased. Should your student teache Qur-aan to another person, every time this person recites Qur-aan, you still will get hasanaat from his recitation, because you have initially sowed that seed of perpetual charity, even if you are deceased for a long time already, etc. thawaab and hasanaat continues till the end of the world, when the trumpet will be blown.
Rasoolullaah (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “Every dead person would have his deeds sealed, except the one stationed in the path of Allah, for they would have their deeds grow until the Day of Judgment, and they would be spared the tribulation of the angels of the grave.” [Abu Dawood and al-Haakim]
Al Qurtubi (rahimahullaah), the mufassir states: ‘This means that Ribaat guarding the frontiers of Muslim lands with the intention of defending it against the enemies) provides the greatest reward of all after death.’
However not everyone can guard their lands from attack as the Mujaahidoon (fighters in the path of Allah) do. You can start by teaching your children to make du‘a for their parents and on behalf of the deceased, and also equip them to be righteous in all spheres of life. Pious children is the simplest form of securing Sadaqat-ul Jaariyah. So what if one has no children? Allah did not place difficulty in Deen for us to earn the perpetual reward of Sadaqat-ul Jaariayh and as such there are many ways in which to earn these rewards. Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “… Allah remains helping a person as long as he helps his brother.” [Muslim]
We can earn our rewards in many ways from teaching Qur-aan, to financial contributions or by physically taking part in the actual project or logistics. Allah Ta’ala rewards the niyyah (intention) of the person, so contribute in whatever way or form that you can.
Here is a list of Sadaqat-ul Jaariyah projects that you can initiate or involve yourself in. When making your niyyah, please be merciful and include the entire Ummah of Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam). We are all in need of Allah Ta’ala’s mercy therefore, if we show mercy unto others, then Allah Ta’ala will In-shaa-Allah show mercy unto us.
1. Distribute copies of the Noble Qur-aan.
2. Teach someone how to read Qur-aan.
3. Impart Islamic knowledge unto others, even if it be a single hadith, sunnah or dua.
4. Distribute Islamic Literature.
5. Establish libraries and become active in Da’wah.
6. Donate toward or assist in the building and equipping of a masjid.
7. Donate toward or assist in the building and equipping of a madrasah, maktab or school.
8. Donate toward or assist in the building and equipping of a hospital.
9. Make water available to others eg: donate toward wells or boreholes. Perhaps place a water cooler at the office.
10. Sponsor an orphan or a student of Deen eg: Aalim or Hifdh
11. Plant trees.
Sayyidunaa Jaabir (RadiyAllaahu ‘anhu) narrated that Rasoolullaah (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “There is no Muslim who plants a plant or a tree, except that whatever is eaten from it is a charity for him. Whatever is stolen from that is a charity for him. Whatever is eaten from it by an animal is a charity for him. Whatever a bird eats is a charity for him, no one suffers a loss except that it will be a charity for him till the Day of Judgement.” [Muslim].
It is narrated from Sayyidunaa Anas (RadiyAllaahu ‘anhu) that Rasoolullaah (Sallallaahu ‘Alayhi wa Sallam) said: “There is no Muslim who plants a plant or a tree, or sows a seed and no bird, or human or animal eats from that except that it is a charity for that person”. [Bukhari, Muslim & Ahmad]
Sadaqatul Jaariya benefits the person even while he is alive, as it averts calamities, increases the believer’s lifespan and sustenance, through the will of Allah Ta’ala. After the person passes away it continues to assist the Believer as it cools the heat of the grave, grants shade to him on the Day of Qiyaamah, cools Allah Ta’ala’s anger and saves him from punishment.
Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur-aan Kareem, “Whatever good you do. Allah is aware of it” [Surah 02/al-Baqarah, v:197] So go on, check your intention and give your charity with a happy, open heart. May Allah Ta’ala accept from us all. Aameen!
Sister Ayesha Vadia Moola