Give and feed to whatever extent possible
By: Ayatullah Shaheed Syed Abdul Husayn Dastaghaib Shirazi
How many benefits for this world as well as for the next life lie in charity? Spend on your poor relatives especially during this holy month of Ramadhan! So much so, that the one who breaks the fast of a fasting believer gets his own sins pardoned. He gets the reward of freeing one slave. Remember that breaking of fast (Iftar) is to give a fasting person food for conclude his fast at sunset, not all those unwise things which are being done. A little quantity of dates (dry or fresh), a piece to everyone in the rows of worshippers. Everyone eats a piece and recites Surah Hamd once. This is selling and buying, if everyone eats a little fruit or sweet meat and recites Surah Fatiha for the departed relatives. If you have utilized a hundred thousand toomans of your mother, give half of it in the path of God for her benefit. Even a piece of sweet food is also a kind of good act for her.
Charity proportional with possessions
Someone said from beneath the pulpit, "O Messenger of God! We do not have food enough to give for meal for ending the fast." What they meant to say was, "We do not have enough with which we could gratify the one who fasted." The Holy Prophet replied, "O believer! Do give Iftar. Even if you have two pieces of dates, give one to the other person and break your fast with the remaining one." This is for one who has nothing more in excess. It is not so that one who has a lot of wealth may also think of giving only one piece of date in charity. It is wrong. A morsel of sweetmeat! It is mentioned in the admonitions of Shaykh Shustari too. He remarked in Najaf, "What is this preparation of sweetmeat and to rotate it in the congregation and the shrine?" Who has taught this mockery? To feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and repay the debt of the poor indebted person, there are several kinds of good deeds to be done.
They can be for the dead (on their behalf) too. Charity has wider angles. Every good deed is charity. Sometimes your charity may amount to ten thousand toomans too. You must give it. For example, you have given a loan of ten thousand toomans to someone. You know that he does not have this amount. Here Qur’an says, "First give him respite." Do not raise complaint, as you already know that he does not have this amount. It is unlawful to pressurize him. How would it be if you donate this amount for the benefit of your late father? You spent millions from father’s wealth. So now you may also spend ten thousand in charity for his benefit in the Hereafter.
If you give a loan to someone its benefit is in your account. It is only for you though it may be in the name (or in the cause) of a mosque, a madressah, poor people, giving breakfast to near and dear ones. But in every way you have aided your own self. You have earned a real income. You have discovered the path to Paradise after your death. You have opened the door of heaven for yourself. A miser, by God, is stingy against himself. One who holds so fast to his wealth in this world closes the gates of Paradise for himself. He is preparing a yoke of fire for himself. The one who gave generously in this world will make this good quality manifest for him after death also.
They are righteous in the other world also
There are some narrations in Wasaelush Shia that indicate that anyone who became famous in this world will be famous in that world also. Do you know what famous means? It means that you became a righteous person in the town and hence people said that you are generous and righteous. They said, "Such and such Haji is pious; that he fulfills the needs of others; he solves the difficulties of people, his hands are good, his feet are good. He knows well about the reality of his wealth. He does not think that his wealth is his and for him only. He loves guests. Anyone who approaches him does not return empty handed. He deprives none."
Imam Sadiq says, "One who became famous in this world will be famous in the Hereafter too." It means that the one who perfected his virtue, justice, charity etc will similarly benefits other souls also after death. Just as you hosted guests in these nights of the holy month of Ramadhan, your dinner-cloth will remain spread for relatives as well as non-relatives after death. In short, whatever God gives you, you must spend it on others also and intercede for them. O the unfortunate one who kept your doors closed here! After your death the door of your house also will remain closed. You are unaware of this.