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In the Name of God بسم الله
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starlight

Charity/sadqa wasted if you tell people about it?

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Salam,

Let me begin by saying I am feeling very depressed about this.

If one gives an amount in charity and then mentions it in front of someone not with the niyyah of 'Riya' is the good deed wasted? 

I was sitting with a few people from work the other day and somehow the topic about helping the less fortunate came up. Someone wanted to know about a particular orphanage here and I replied by saying that I sometimes visit the children there and then just to describe my experience and to motivate others I said something like ,'I take little gifts for the children but what's most people don't know is that they need a healthy social interaction as much as material things so if someone can just sit and talk with them or read them stories even that would be good' I said this because I wanted to encourage the person to go there, nothing else.

Let me tell the other thing too because it's bothering me and I have probably wasted my good deeds so what's to lose by announcing it. A student I know needed financial support to continue her education so a few of us helped her out. Since I teach in a college I know there are others too so when someone mentioned helping others financially I mentioned this case (without giving out her name of course) and said she was able to graduate and it was very heartening see somone coming from difficult financial and social circumstances get a good degree. 

Again my only intention was to encourage people to give charity. Where I live the most common, convenient, easy practice for people who want to give charity is to give away money to street beggars most of whom belong to organised groups. Instead of giving handouts of those I think people should be encouraged to make the effort to find people who are genuinely in need of help and are struggling to improve their lives.

Was this 'Riya'? Showing off? It's been haunting me ever since. 

Edited by starlight

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I think the opposite is true. Not Riya at all. You mentioned it to encourage others to partake in helping the needy which already earns you so much thawab and inshallah when they do, you get your cut of Hasanat from the Most giving the Most generous. 

أكرم الأكرمين 

 

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6 hours ago, starlight said:

Let me tell the other thing too because it's bothering me and I have probably wasted my good deeds so what's to lose by announcing it.

There's another angle to this and a very practical one. Once people know how much/what you give others, it raises their expectations about what to expect from you. I don't want to second-guess / make up my own logic for Islamic injunctions about discretion, but I can understand how public knowledge can turn a good act into something that breeds jealousy etc.

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