Why in the world are we even talking about this? My friends, I had the same question when I went to my Sheikh I said ya sheikh, in our time today should I be poor or should I be rich? because I cannot reconcile this fact? my dad says be a doctor, be a lawyer so you can be rich and my mom says something similar to be rich but my religion seems to say something else? how do i reconcile this? so my sheikh (may Allah have mercy upon him) told me something very beautiful and I want to share that with you all here on Islamic Preacher Website, he said, the strong Muslims that Allah loves is the Muslim that has the world in his hand and Allah in his heart.
He has the world in his hand, he plays with it as he wishes, does with it what he wants, he helps who he wants, the money is in his hand, not in his heart, what's in the heart is a Hereafter, and this is the essence of zuhud, a man came to Abu Yusuf, the student of Abu Hanifah (ra) and he said, ya imaam, why don't you write to us a book on zuhud, write to us a book on zuhud, what does zuhud mean, a citizen, leaving the world, shunning the world and this is how we normally describe it, so Abu Yusuf said, 'I have already written a book on Kharaj for you' what? I have already written a book on Kharaj, what is kharaj again? what to do with the produce of this earth and how to distribute it according to Islamic fiqh, so people are confused and Abu Yusuf simply close the door and went away.
How do you understand the statement of Abu Yusuf? The way we understand it is that zuhud is not what we think zuhud is, zuhud doesn't mean that you have to be a faqir, zuhud and being a zahid does not mean that you have to be poor, my friends, it means that in your heart the world is not there, in your heart and in your mind, the concern is not for this world, the concern is for the hereafter but in your hand, have the wealth of this dunya to do with it what you want. Allah has ordered us to be strong believers, a strong believer that has money and wealth is far more beloved to Allah then a weak believer, a weak worshiper of Allah who does not have any wealth and he's a poor man, why is that? because ultimately a person who has wealth and money, he can help himself or help others, he can give Izzah and honor to Islam and Muslims.
The Prophet (SAW) said: when He needed camel, when he needed armors, what did he do? he asked Usmaan, Usmaan gave him ten thousand camels in one go, this is Izzah and honor, this is wealth and power. My friends, in the 21st century, it is not honorable to be poor, it is not honorable for you to think I am a great Muslim, simply because, you know what Alhamdulillah I have little money, etc, no! I want you to be rich, I demand you to be rich, I order you to be rich, rich not in your heart, with the wealth in your heart, no but in your hand, in your heart have nothing but Allah, in your heart have an attachment for the Hereafter, do not shun the world but shun worldliness, does that make sense?
Allah (swt), numerous verses in the Quran, tells us to have strength, Allah says, ''& prepared for those who plot and plan against you, whatever you can from strength, He also says about secular knowledge, and what is secular knowledge? It means all other types of knowledge except that He gives us economic strength, physical strength in this world and Allah talks about it and He says in the Quran: who did we teach? We taught Dawood, how to mend metal and how to use metal in order to create bows and Spears, out of metal, before they didn't know metallurgy, so Allah taught them metallurgy and then Allah says: are you thankful for this, so my brothers and sisters in Islam, every one of you must be a zahd in your heart, desiring nothing but the hereafter in your heart, but in your hands, have the wealth of the world in your hands so you can help this Deen and help this religion and help the vision of the final Messenger (pbuh).
May Allah help us (Ameen)