This is a brief response i gave to a westerner who have low opinion of muslims 8 years ago in December 2001.
(How ironic ... in the wake of economic crises now plaguing the western nations and the almost total collapse of western capitalism, many of the super-rich countries now on the verge of bankruptcy... we will remember well the verse : antumul-fuqara' wahuwal ghaniyyul hamid)
Mr. John Smith wrote: >
Despite all the oil wealth, why are Muslims all over > the world so dirt poor and backward. In this category, > I do not count the Saudis and Kuwaitis who are > beneficiaries of unearned oil wealth but the unwashed > masses of dirt poor Muslims from Morocco to Pakistan > to Indonesia.
the term 'unwashed' is deregatory and defamatory - Bathing and ablution is compulsory religous rituals of muslim life no matter how poor they are. Muslims perfrom 'Ghusl' (ritual bathing) after after every intercourse and perform 'wudhu' (ablution) before 5 times prayer a day. also 'istinja' - ritual purification ----- just because they are poor, doesnt mean they are unwashed! many Sufis and Qalandars are poor by choice.
on the other hand there are also crushing poverty in non-Muslim countries: like masses of Hindus in India, Christians in African Countries, Christians in South American Countries, Christians in Filipina etc..
This is despite 'super-rich' "christian" countries in europe and n.americas.
= Therefore it is not fair to just pinpoint poor muslims..
Mr. John Smith wrote:
> Does the oil wealth of Saudi Arabia or Kuwait belong > to their ruling families or is this wealth supposed to > help all the poor Muslims all over the world (ie Zakat > or charity for Muslims)?
Can the wealth of christians help alleviate hunger, and and poverty in other poor christian nations (such as) mentioned above? Despite the massive charities by the various churches - many segments of poor christians still remain poor....
The oil wealth from the gulf states did trickle down to the poor muslims masses despite the unbelievable snobbish and condescending manner of the gulf arabs. Zakat and charity reached the poor segments of the muslims, at least i can testify this in my own town and home -
however getting rid of the cycle of poverty is a different matter. The cycle of poverty is not exclusive to muslim only.. it infects almost anyone without discrimination.
... even in USA ( 17 trillion dollar in debt )
Being rich and living in luxury do not indicate eternal divine favour. In many cases, it is the sign of divine wrath. Being poor is not a divine salvation either. ...
but it is really the "shi'ar of Salihin" (fakhr al-salihin) it is also the mark of Sayyidina Jesus alaihissalam.