Poverty in sharia economic perspective

Poverty in sharia economic perspective

Beggars lying on the side of the street with dirty clothes (freepik)

Penulis: Sayuti Se.Sy

Poverty will always be an interesting object to be studied and discussed by economists. Although it has always been the object of discussion, unfortunately, poverty has always been a scourge for every region or country.

Before long, what exactly is the definition of poverty in Indonesia? The National Socio-Economic Survey (Susenas) noted that the poverty line in March 2022 was at IDR 505,469 per capita per month.

Meanwhile, the World Bank uses the standard of $2 per day per capita or IDR 900,000 per month.

So when someone has an income in that number, it can be interpreted that the person is in the poor category.

While people who are below that number are included in the definition below the poverty line or indigent.

Currently, based on the SUSENAS criteria above, there are 26.16 million people who fall into the poor category in Indonesia as of March 2022

To alleviate poverty, the government has actually provided many direct programs such as KUR, PKH, BLT, to subsidize some goods.

In this article, we will not discuss this. We will focus on the definition only.

Islamic economics defines poverty.

Poverty is linguistically difficult to define in Islam. Although there are many hadiths and verses of the Koran that mention the word poor.

First of all, it is important to know that the poor and the poor are different. In al-Mausu'ah al-Fiqhiyyah (p. 199, volume 32), linguistically poor are.

الْفَقِيرُ اللُّغَةِ الْغَنِيِّ، لَّ الُهُ

Poor in language is the opposite of "al-ghaniy" (rich), namely people who have little wealth. In terms, poor is,

الاِصْطِلاَحِ: لاَ لِكُ ا ا لاَ مَوْقِعًا ايَتِهِ

Poor people are people who do not have wealth and work so they cannot meet their daily needs.

The meaning of poor in language is,

ال: الْحَرَكَةِ. الشَّيْئُ ا ا

Poor in language is the opposite of "al-harakah" (moving), meaning something that is still when it loses its movement.

In terms, poor is,

لَى الٍ ا ايَتِهِ لاَ

Poor are people who have wealth and work, but do not meet their needs. Ash-Shaykh Abdurrahman bin Nasir as-Sa'di in his commentary (p. 341) explains that the poor are,

الفَقِيرُ: اَلَّذِي لَا ا، ايَتِهِ ا.

A poor person is someone who cannot fulfill of the basic needs of himself and his dependents (wife and children), such as food, clothing and shelter needs.

While poor is

الْمِسْكِينُ: اَلَّذِي ا لَا امَ ايَتِهِ، لِأَنَّهُ لَوْ ا لَكَانَ ا، الزَّكَاةِ ا ل فقرهم ومسكنتهم.

A poor person is someone who can only meet or more of the basic needs of himself and his dependents (wife and children), but cannot fulfill all his needs, for example someone needs Rp 1 million in a month, but what he gets is only Rp. 500 thousand.

Fakir is a person who is very miserable in his life, does not have the wealth and energy to fulfill his life.

Definition of Fakir from Some of the Imams of the Madhab

Some scholars have their own opinion about the meaning of poor. The four scholars are Shafi'i, Hanafi, Hambali and Maliki. The following is the meaning of poor for each Imam:

Shafi'i: Fakir is a person who does not have property and business; or has a business or property that is less than one-half of its adequacy, and no one is obligated to pay for it.

Hanafi: A poor person is a person who has less wealth than the senishab or has more or less, but it is used up to meet his needs.

Hambali: A poor person is a person who does not have wealth, or has less than one-half of his needs.

Maliki: A poor person is a person who has wealth, while his wealth is not sufficient for his needs within a year, or a person who has income but does not meet his needs, then zakat is given just to meet his needs.

To determine a person's criteria for being indigent and poor as well as the limits and standards of zakat, there are several ways of measuring, as follows, one of them.

Criteria based on Had Kifayah

Let's discuss one by one the meaning of these criteria. There are several differences that aim to complement each other between the Shari'a and the poverty conditions that occur in a country.

Adapted from the Center for Strategic Studies of BAZNAS (2018) and delivered by K.H. Izzuddin Edi Siswanto, Lc., M.A., Ph.D., according to Ibn Abidin, had kifayah is the minimum limit that can keep people from the difficulties of life. This includes the need for food, clothing, shelter, or other things such as tools and vehicles that do not reach the luxury stage.

Then, according to Imam Nawawi, kifayah is an sufficiency which is neither less nor more. This indicates that something is called kifayah, if it is not excessive and in accordance with the needs.

Then, Imam Syatibi defines had kifayah, which is a measure of a very urgent and fundamental need. This need is not just a primary adequacy, but is included in the secondary category which is a milestone in the smooth running of human life.

The basis of had kifayah is based on Maqasid al-Syariah which is measured based on the following dimensions:



Housing and household facilities





If a person is able to fulfill had kifayah, then he is included in the group that is prohibited from receiving zakat. The size of a person who is unable to fulfill had kifayah is regulated in Maqasid al-Syariah which is below 5000 dirhams or the equivalent of 3.5 million. Below that, he belongs to the poor. So, need help as mustahik.

The opinion above is in line with the definition that the author intended. That is trying to define poverty with the verse of zakat in classifying eight asnaf, namely the indigent or people whose income is less than their needs, poor or people who

Because according to the author, zakat is a money distribution instrument that has strict criteria, starting from the limit on the obligatory property of zakat to the limit on its acceptance

According to the Qur'an, zakat is paid to be distributed to groups of people who are entitled to receive zakat or called Asnaf. Based on Q.S At-Taubah verse 60, there are 8 groups of people who receive zakat. Among other things, the poor, the poor, the amil, the converts, the riqab, the gharimin, the fisabilillah, and the ibn sabil.

The eight asnaf are indeed people who have financial difficulties and difficulties in meeting their needs so that they deserve help.

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