Question: What does it mean to be stingy?
What does it mean to be stingy? Let me answer that by saying, what it means to be generous. Then from that you understand the opposite is to be stingy. I want to answer it like that because our Sheykh is the most generous. He is the servant of the Most Generous. His name is Abdul Kerim. So what it means to be generous? One thing, I’m saying simple thing, we like to say simple things, to be generous is not meaning that when I have extra, whatever it is, if it is time or possession, or knowledge, anything, when I have extra then I am going to give. That is not generous.
Generous is not saying, ‘I have this, half I’m going to give it to you. Half is mind.’ That is still not generous. Generous also does not mean, ‘okay I give you everything, except for this thing that is for me.’ As Hazreti Umar said to the Holy Prophet (asws), ‘Ya Rasulullah, I love you more than anyone, except my own self.’ And the Holy Prophet says, ‘Ya Umar, you haven’t reach to complete faith.’ And Hazreti Umar quickly said, I’m paraphrasing, he is saying that, ‘I love you more than myself.’ Don’t think that he just change his mind just like that. That was a rehearsal, Sheykh Effendi said, for us to understand. A man cannot just change his heart in a split second like that. We are talking about Hazreti Umar here. Hazreti Umar who gave up his entire life for the Holy Prophet (asws). He gave his life, so how can he really claim that he loves himself more when he has put his life in front of the Prophet (asws), to be taken?
Generosity, it is one of the names, the attribute of Allah swt. And Allah swt loves the one who is generous. And there is a Hadiths e-Sharif where the Holy Prophet (asws) is saying, ‘Allah loves generosity. And He loves the generous unbeliever more than the stingy believer.’ And in these days, Sheykh Effendi is saying, Sheykh Maulana is saying: in these days, so many people especially they are not belonging to Islam, they will find safety through generosity. Only by being generous, by giving a lot of Charity and kindness, they will find safety.
So, in our way, we belong to the way of Hazreti Abu Bakr Siddik. And what is the way of Hazreti Abu Bakar Siddik? When he came to the presence of the Prophet (asws), and he was wearing the leaves from the date trees, tying around his waist, and he came. Prophet (asws) was smiling and saying to him, ‘Ya Abu Bakr, what happen?’ ‘Today, ya Rasulullah, I’ve given everything for the sake of Allah, for the sake of Islam.’ Not even the clothes that he was wearing. He says, he has given everything away. And Prophet says, ‘what about your children? And your family?’ Understand now, Hazreti Abu Bakr Siddiq, his language. You blink and you will not be able to understand it. You blink, you cannot understand. Because his words is like the words of the Prophet. Because Holy Prophet is saying, ‘whatever Allah has put in my heart, I pour into the heart of Abu Bakr Siddik.’ Understand how he answered this question. Prophet (asws) is saying, ‘what about your children? and your family? did you leave anything to them?’ What did he say? ‘I left them Allah and His Prophet.’ Understand? So who is possessing what? What he possess then that time?
So, in today’s world, especially in these times, in this country, everyone is very stingy. Because they are not taught how to share. Number one. They are not taught how to share when they are young. Everyone has ‘my own’ thing. This is my seat, my plate, my food, my toys, my this, my that. Maybe there’s only one or two kids in the family, so he gets spoiled. Everyone is giving and he is not taught to give to others. Only knowing how to take, how to take, how to take. Because this whole society now, it is based on desire. It is based on Hawa. You look around, everything is based on your desire. You look in the magazine, every single word, every single page is based on desire. It awakens your desire. Even if you don’t have that desire, you see something, you’ll say, ‘yeah I want it.’ You are not hungry, you watch something, showing burger or pizza, because Americans they love pizza and burger, then they get hungry. They spend billions of dollars to put all the nice sounds and color and everything, and squeezed into thirty seconds, for you to awaken your desire. Now once your desire is awaken so much like that, how you think you can be generous? Can you? When you are already brainwashed to say, ‘I want. I want. I want. I want. I want.’ How then will you have space in your head or in your heart to say, ‘I give.’
So, a stingy person is the poorest person. Because he is always in need. A generous person is the richest person, because he is not in need. He doesn’t need anything. And he’s rich, because he has things around him but he doesn’t need it. You are poor, because you are always in need. May Allah never test us with that. InsyaAllah. One of the reasons we pull ourselves away from the mess of this age of dajjal to live on top of a mountain, to keep ourselves clean. To understand what is real and what is not real. What is fake and what is not fake. InsyaAllah. Still, we are not saying that we are completely shielded from it hundred percent. We never say that we are pefect, but, we are doing, we are trying and we are holding on tightly to our Sheykh.
So, you don’t know how to share from young, you cannot be generous. You are only taught how to take but never how to give, then that time it is in your nature now to be stingy. Stingy doesn’t just mean, ‘oh, I’m not going to give something to someone.’ Stingy also means, when I give to someone, I’m going to count it. I’m going to count that I give. I’m going to keep a score. Stingy is only learning how to take and not to give. A stingy person will find it very difficult to enter into a Paradise. You can be praying fifty times a day but some way somehow, sheytan is going to get to you. Because our Lord is not stingy. A believer cannot be stingy. And our Prophet is generous, alaihi salatu wa salam. Yeah, this much is enough. Fatiha.
Hoja Lokman Efendi Hz, Khalifah of Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs) * OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
March 27, 2015
7 Jamadilakhir 1436H