Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sadaqa Jariah

                  Sunday School, Copyright 2012, S. E. Jihad Levine, All Rights Reserved

"Sadaqa jariah" is often defined as "continuous charity."  It is based on the following hadith:

"If a 
human dies, then his good deeds stop except for three: a Sadaqa Jariah (continuous charity), a beneficial knowledge, or a righteous child who prays for him.” – Sahih Muslim

I'm now in my 60s, and as I get older, I often think of my legacy.  What mark have I left on the world?  Will anyone remember me after my death?  Will the world be just a wee bit better because I was here?  Insha Allaah, it will be.

As I don't have any children, yet alone a "righteous child" to pray for me, like many other barren Muslim women, Allaah t'ala, in His infinite Mercy, has given me other opportunities for good deeds that will not stop after my death.

Since I don't have any money so far in life to dig wells or build mosques, I try to focus on two areas:  writing and teaching.

When I wrote a booklet for Muslim inmates coping with grief and bereavement, Out From Darkness ... Into Light for use in prisons and jails, I never dreamed the booklet would find its way to North Carolina, and into the hands of Alexis Smith, hospital chaplain in the Moses Cone Health System.  She contacted me and described the need for such a resource for Muslims trying to cope with grief and bereavement in a hospital setting.  Together, she and I adapated my original booklet for use in hospitals and healthcare settings, and the result is He Brings Them Out From Darkness Into Light. 

May Allaah t'ala makes these booklets sadaqa jariah for me.  May these booklets continue to help Muslims long after my death.  Ameen.

As a Muslim prison chaplain in a state prison for women, I had a need for an Arabic teacher for the Muslim inmates I serve.  It took me about four years to find a Muslim sister on the outside willing to navigate all the correctional system's bureacracy before she could actually come in and teach our inmates. 

Prior to her coming to us, I, being a revert who never mastered the Arabic language, was forced out of dire need to buckle down and learn the language myself so I could teach in the prison.  With the Help of Allaah t'ala, I was able to master Gateway to Arabic, Book 1, and teach it to our women (a few who are now better than me, Alhamdulillah!).  All the while, I was making dua to Allaah t'ala to send us an Arabic teacher.  Subhan'Allaah!  He sent one!  A beautiful Palestinian sister who teaches us Tajweed and Qur'aan! 

So now, I teach our sisters the Gateway book, and when they complete it, they "graduate" to the Arab sister's class to learn Tajweed and Qur'aan.  I'm even teaching this book to our mosque weekend school students!

May Allaah t'ala make this effort a sadaqa jariah for me long after my death as the women and children I teach go on to learn Qur'aan and teach others.  Ameen. 

I've described a few ways that anyone can obtain sadaqa jariah for him/her self. 

What do you do?  If you share and someone reads about it and implements it into their deen, Insha Allaah t'ala you will receive some of the reward, too :)