A typical Mullah mindset always lied to us that poverty is the symbol of Prophets and it is wrong to be rich in Islam. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Prevent yourself from poverty as it takes you to the level of Shirk.”
Prosperity is the most significant symbol of a Muslim society. There were companions of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) who donated billions of rupees if we talk in terms of today. If Prophet didn’t like the wealth then he should have asked his companions not to support him. Within roughly two decades, Muslims established their own state and became so powerful that no one could stand in their way. The spread of Islam was not possible without wealth as they needed the resources to mobilize people and win the wars. The Battle of Trench is the best example of the thriving days of Muslims. It was an early Muslim victory that ultimately forced the Meccans to recognize the political and religious strength of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). His companions donated generously for the purpose to establish the first Muslim state in the world.
There are many Islamic reasons to aim to be rich if that is right for who you are and you have the right intention. However, if being rich and the pursuit of wealth is not right for you then there will be no chance for you to become financially independent. And if you don’t have money, you can’t help people. Things are very different now than they used to be. Now you can’t fight a war with swords and horses. This is 21st century and a true Muslim always understands the era, he is living in. If you don’t have sufficient income streams in 2022, you can’t survive and as a result poverty will take you to the level of Shirk and ultimately lead you to a different world of hunger, crime and illiteracy.
Wealth in Islam is not a bad thing. It is an instrument. Wealth should be understood as a means to an end, and not loved as an end itself. That kind of relationship to wealth is only possible for some people. Those people have certain traits which allow us to recognize them as the “Righteous Entrepreneurs”. These people pursue wealth with a clear view on the purpose and end-goal of that wealth such as benefiting humanity and the Muslim nation.
Wealth isn’t bad per se, it is bad when misused. This is the point where things get worse. Specially we Muslims have really wealth digestion problem. The Prophet (PBUH) said, ‘Truly, for every nation there is a trial, and the trial for my nation is wealth.’ [Tirmidhi]
But we can not say that wealth is a bad thing. Allah gives us only good – and he gives us wealth. “He it is who made the earth smooth for you, therefore go about in the spacious sides thereof, and eat of His sustenance, and to Him is the return after death.” Quran [67:15].
Out of 63 years, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) lived in extreme poverty for three years, when he first announced about His Prophethood. He was met with stiff resistance from the Meccans, and they went to all lengths, from bribery to trade boycott, to stop him, but he would not give in. As a result he lived few years in poverty. Before revelation came to him Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) himself earned his living as a wealthy trader. The Arabs referred to him by the names of “As-Sadiq” (the truthful) and “Al-Amin” (the trustworthy) and, in fact, it is said that many would give their wealth to him for safekeeping, even after he began preaching a faith in which they did not believe. Here is a critical question for you. Would you give your wealth to someone for safekeeping if that person is financially poor in the society? I don’t think so. The thinking of some Muslims that Islam does not support wealth-seeking is misleading, flawed and theologically weak. Scholars of Islam noted that buying, selling, services and manufacturing are encouraged, supported and demanded in the teachings of Islam.
It is a duty of every Muslim, a duty sacred above all – is to have liberty and financial freedom and that without it there can be neither happiness nor real progress. “Let the rich man spend according to his means; and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allaah has given him.” [Al-Quran 65:7]
“When a man spends on his family, hoping for reward, that is (counted as) an act of charity for him.” Bukhaari (55) & Muslim (1002)