The Islamic Tax ( Khums )

in the name of allah, the merciful, the compassionate

" and know that of whatever you acquire, one-fifth of it belongs to god, his messenger, the near of kin, the orphans, the needy and the wayfarer." the qur'an, 8:41

" khums ", literally means in arabic, one fifth is an islamic tax revenue for certain income in order to fulfil the needs of islamic community. prophet muhammad (p.) placed khums in the third place of islamic beliefs. bukhari reports that prophet muhammad (p.) said, " i command you four things- first to belief in god, bear witness that there is no god but allah; second to perform prayers; third to pay zakat; and fourth to pay khums of whatever you gain. ( bukhari, v. 4. p.99. cairo)

ahl-ul-bayt hadith says : khums is an obligation on whoever benefits-in small or large amounts. the reason for the emphasis of qur'an and hadith on khums obviously lies behind the need of the community for an assured tax revenue. basically, all muslims jurists agree that khums is an obligatory islamic tax, but they differ in conditions of this tax.

the different views are based on the meaning of "ghanama" in the mentioned qur'anic verse. the arabic lexicons gave the meaning of the word " ghanama" as to gain booty of the war, to obtain something, to gain something, to bestow, to grant, and to seize. the word "ghanama" was used in all these meanings. it is even used in abstract meaning, such as proverbs, e.g.,ightunimu al -furas (take opportunities, do not loose them)

on these basis , ahl-ul-bayt school of thoughts believes that " ghanama" means whatever an individual gains, whether as booty of war or as source of income, it applies to this islamic tax.

therefore khums applies to any of the following categories: booty of war, mineral, khol, oil, treasure hidden in earth or net income, these all would be considered as " gained profit".

Net Income

among these categories the most common is the net income gained by the lawful means, such as trade, professional incomes, or any other work related incomes. after deducting expenses, the net income is subject to khums. all of the expenses are tax-exempted from khums tax. the khums applies only if the net income remained one year without any use. thus if it is used within a year after the date if profit or income, the khums does not apply.

also if the khums of the particular object has been paid, the object would be tax exempted as long as it remains. but if it is used in business and some profits are made in it, then the khums tax applies only on the profit. one can pay the khums tax immediately after gaining the profit. it does not become obligatory before passing one year without use. one the basis, one is always on safe side to record the daily income and expenses.

this could be managed by an annual schedule showing the capital, the expenses, the net income, the khums paid and the khums due, etc.

Distribution for Khums

the khums is divided as follows: the first 10 percent of khums is called ( sahm-al- imam ) used to serve the needs of islamic faith which fulfills the need of the islamic community worldwide. since imam recognizes this need more than any one else, it should be given to him or his representative, the highest authority-mujtahid or ask his view in this regard.

the second 10 percent should be given to a poor sayyid who can not earn his living for a year, but he should not use it in any unlawful ways. example-khums tax schedule


month capital net income khums paid


sayyid / sahm-i-imam


1 1,000 15.00 2.50


2 100.00 10.00


3 50.00




5 100.00 10.00




7 50.00 15.00


8 100.00


9 50.00 10.00


10 50.00 10.00


11 2.50




total 1,000 500.00 37.50 37.50


The Islamic Calendar

in the name of god, most gracious, most merciful

" indeed god desires to put away from you people of the house[of prophet(p.). [all] filth and purify you..." the qur'an, 33 :33 rabi 'al awwal:

1st ( hijra *) the migration of the prophet (p.) from mecca to madina.

12th(260 a.h.): martyrdom of imam hassan al-askari (a.)

17th (52 b.h.) : birthday of prophet muhammad (p.)

17th (83 a.h.) : birthday of imam jaf'ar al-sidaq (a.)

rabi 'al-thani:

8th (232 a.h.) : birthday of imam hassan al-askari (a.)

jamada al-ula:

5th ( 5 a.h.) : birthday of zainab al-kubra (a.)

13th (11th a.h.) : martyrdom of fatima al-zahra (a.)

jamada al-thaniyyha:

20th (8 b.h.) : birthday of fatima al zahra (a.)


1st (57 a.h.): birthday of imam muhammad al-baqir (a.)

3rd (254 a.h.) : martyrdom of imam ali al-hadi al-naqi (a.)

10th (195 a.h): birthday of imam muhammad al-jawad (a.)

13th (23 b.h.): birthday of imam ali ibn ali talib (a.)

14th (62 a.h.): death of zainab al kubra (a.)

27th (62 a.h.):mi'raj, the midnight ascension of prophet muhammad (p.) to heaven.


3rd (4 a.h.) : birthday of imam al-hussain (a.)

5th (38 a.h.): birthday of imam zayn al-abidin (a.)

15th (225 a.h.): birthday of imam al-medhi (a.)


15th(3 a.h.): birthday of imam hassan al-mujtaba (a.)

21st ( 40 a.h.): martyrdom of imam ali (a.)

19, 21 & 23 : the nights of qadr


id al-fitr, celebration of the first day after ramadan 25th (148 a.h.) :death of imam jafar al-sadiq (a.)

dhul qidah :

11th (148 a.h.): birthday of imam al-rida (a.)

29(216a.h.): martyrdom of imam muhammadal-jawad(a.)


7th (114 a.h.): martyrdom of imam mohammad al-baqir(a.)

10th: id al-adah, the day of sacrifice on the occasion of haj (piligrimage)

15th: ( 212 a.h.): birthday of imam al-hadi al-naqi(a.)

18th: id gahdir khum, celebration of imam ali (a.) succession day.


9th : tasu'a, ninth of muharram.

10th ( 61 a.h.): ashura-martyrdom of imam al hussain (a.)

25th (94 a.h.) : martyrdom of imam zayn al-abidin al-sajjad (a.)


7th (128 a.h.): birthday of imam musa al-kadim(a.)

20th : day arba'in, 40th day after imam husayn's (a.) martrydom at kerbala, iraq.

28th ( 11 a.h.): death of the prophet muhammad(p.)

29th : martyrdom of imam al-rida (a.)

Funeral Regulations

in the name of god, most gracious, most merciful

" every soul shall taste death ". the qur'an, 3:184 islam as a way of life, has legislated many rules in order to honor humans from birth to death. among these rules are funeral regulations. the holy qur'an reads:

" every soul shall taste death, at the end, to us shall be you be returned back. but those who believe and work deeds of righteousness, to them shall we give chambers of paradise underneath which, rivers flow, therein dwelling forever. an excellent is the wage of those who ( do goods deeds)". the qur'an 29:57&58.

these regulations start from death bed until burial. the three main obligatory (wajib) regulations are as follows:

  1. washing ( ghusl). to wash the body of the deceased.

  2. shrouded ( kafan). the deceased should be wrapped in three simple sheets of cloth.

  3. special prayer (salat-al-mayyit). this prayer is part of funeral service. then the deceased is buried in a grave which is dug parallel to face kaa'ba, mecca. in addition, there are many recommendations (mustahab), which are recommended but are not obligatory. this, in brief, presents the main obligatory ( wajib) rules of islamic funeral regulations.

at death bed: when it becomes obvious to whomever is present at the death bed of a muslim, it is obligatory to turn him/her towards qiblah (mecca).this can be done by being laid down on back while the feet stretched towards qiblah. it is recommend to recite the holy qur'an at his/her presence, especially chapter 2, verse 254; chapter 33,36 and 37. the recitation should not be done in a loud voice in order to avoid disturbance to person on the death bed. however , he/she should not be left unattended. after death: it is recommended to bury the deceased person as soon as possible. prophet muhammad (p.) said, "honor the deceased person by hurrying the burial procedure".

it is forbidden to embalm the body. note: there is no legal requirement to embalm if the body is buried within 24 hours.

i. washing ( ghusl-al-mayyit)

it is obligatory to wash the deceased after the cloth have been removed. the private parts of the body of the deceased shall never be viewed. before washing ( ghusl), the body should be clean from impure objects, such as blood etc. the washing ( ghusl-al-mayyit) begins with intention (niyat), then you may begin washing. first, wash the head and neck. second, wash the right side of body ( shoulder to toes ). third, wash the left side of the body ( shoulder to toes ). this ghusl-al-mayyit should be performed on the deceased three times.

first, with water mixed some powder of lotus leaves.

second, with water mixed with some camphor.

third, with pure clean water only. if lotus leaves or camphor are not available, then pure water can be used as substitution, and in addition it is also necessary to perform tayammum on the deceased.


  1. anyone who washes the deceased must do ghusl-al-mass for himself; that is to take shower for touching the corpse. this ghusl-al-mass is obligatory for touching the dead body after the body becoming cold and before being washed.

  2. if the deceased is less than three years old, either man or woman can wash the body.

  3. hunut is obligatory, that is, to rub with camphor seven parts of the body which are placed on the ground during daily prayers. (1-forehead, 2-3 palms, 4-5 knees, and 6-7 toes.)

ii. the shroud ( kafan )

after washing ( ghusl) has been completed it is obligatory to shroud the deceased in three separate sheets.

the first sheet should, atleast, cover the area navel to the knees.

the second sheet should cover, atleast, part of upper body from shoulder to the upper body, from shoulders to the upper half of legs. the third sheet should cover the whole body. the deceased should be completely wrapped in it.

please note, it is forbidden to use unclean sheets or anything made of silk. it is recommended that, (1) the garment be made of cotton and be white; (2) to have turban for men and hair cover for a women; (3) covering the private parts areas with cotton; and (4) to write some especial prayer ( du'a ) on the shroud.

iii. the prayer

the prayer of funeral service differs from the regular daily prayers. this prayer should be offered for any deceased muslim who is six years of age and older. during the time of prayer, the deceased must be laid on his/her back, and the head should be to the right of the person(s) who is offering the prayers. the person(s) offering this prayer must face qibla ( mecca).

how to pray? this prayer should be offered in a standing position close enough t the deceased body. the person(s) who is offering this prayer must face qibla (mecca), raises his hands to ears saying "allah-u-akber" ( god is great) and recite the following prayers in between:

(allah-u-akber. ashhad-un-la ilaha illallah wahdhu la shrika lah. wa ashhaddu anna muhammadan abdduhu wa rasuluh. arsallahu bil haqqi bashir an wa nadiran bayn-a-yaday assa'a.)

  1. translation: god is great - i bear witness that there is no god but god. he has no associate, and that muhammad is his servant and messenger. he sent him with true warning and good news until the day of judgement.

( allah-u-akber. allahummal! salle ala' muhammad. warham muhammadan wa ale muhammad. ka afdale ma salliyta wa barkata wa tarahhamta ala ibrahim wa ale ibrahim. innaka hamidun majid. wa salle ala jamie ibadallah al salehin ).

  1. translation : god is great.- oh lord, bless muhammad and the house of m muhammad and grant your blessings for muhammad and the house of muhammad, just as you granted you blessing for abraham and the house of abraham. you are the praised, the glorious bless all prophets, messengers, martyrs, righteous and all good servants of you.

( allah-u-akber. allahumma! ighfirlil mumineena wal muminat, wal muslamina wal muslimat, al ahyae. munhum wal amwat. tabi allahumma baynana wa bayanahum bil khayrat. innaka mujib ul daawat. innaka ala kulle shain qadir).

  1. translation: god is great - oh lord! forgive all believers, male and female, all muslems male and female. those who are among us and those who passed away. oh lord ! continue your blessings on them and us. surely, you respond to prayers and you have power over everything.

( allah-u-akber. allahumma! ina hada al mussajja qudamna abduka wa ibnu abdika wabna amatik. nazala bik wa anta khairu manzulen beh. allahumma inna laa naalamu minhu illa khaira, wa anta aalamu behi minna. allahumma ! in kana muhsinan fazid fi-ihsanih, wa in kana maseyan fa tajawaz an saiyatih. wa aghfirlah allahumma ! ijalhu indaka fi aala 'illyyin wa akhlaf ala ahlihi fi alghabirin wa arhamhu bermateka ya arham ar rahim).

  1. translation: god is great- oh lord! this deceased in front of us is your servant and son of your servant and your maid. he comes to you and you are the best host. oh lord! we dont know about him but good, and you know him better than us. oh lord! if he was a good doer increase his deeds and if was a bad doer forgive him. oh lord! place him among the good doers and bless his soul and grant patience to his family. you are the most beneficient, the merciful.

  2. allah-u-akber. translation : god is great.

( this is the end of the prayer. note: one who offers this prayer however, should change the pronouns for female deceased.)

one can recite ' fateha' for the deceased or any part of the qur'an if he/she wishes.

iv. burial procedure

the deceased must be buried in an islamic graveyard arranged for muslims only. in the grave, the deceased must be placed laying on his right side of the body facing qibla (mecca).

it is recommended for those who participates in the burial procession to pour some sand on the grave and say : " we are from god and to him shall return."

note: since the local law does not permit to bury deceased without a case or cement liner ( infant is an exception), the same procedure must be used. that is to pour some sand inside the cement case. sand must be poured inside the case as well as on the dead body itself; making sure the body is laid on its right side facing mecca.

v. final call ( talqin )

it is reported that after deceased is buried, he/she is visited by two angels, who ask certain questions about faith. therefore, it is recommended to pronounce talqin at the last moment of the burial. the text of talqin address the soul of the deceased and reads in part :

oh servant of almighty god ! when the two angels come to you and ask questions regarding your faith, say in reply, that. i have accepted god as my lord, and islam as my religion, and prophet muhammad as my prophet and the qur'an as my book of guidance, and ka'aba as the direction of my worship, and the following imams as my leaders :

  1. ali, the imam (leader of the faithfuls);

  2. hasan ( son of imam ali, whose nickname is mujtaba );

  3. husayn ( the martyr of karbala, iraq );

  4. ali, son of hussain ( al-sajjad, zainul abidin, the worshipper);

  5. mohammad, son of ali ( al- baqir, who splits knowledge);

  6. ja'far, son of mohammad (al-sadiq, the truthful);

  7. musa, son of ja'far (al-kadim, who keeps silence);

  8. ali, son of musa (al-ridha, on whom all islamic communities agreed upon );

  9. muhammad, son of ali ( al-jawad, the generous and al-taqi, the pious);

  10. ali, son of mohammad ( al-hadi, the guide and al-naqi, the pure);

  11. hassan, son of ali (al-askari, who was forced to lived in the military camp );

  12. muhammad, son of hassan ( al-medhi, the rightly guided, the hope of unjustly treated people).

i believe in paradise as verity, that hell is a verity, the question in grave is a verity, that the day of judgment is a verity, and no doubt that god will resurrect people from their graves.

may almighty god : keep you firm in these trails. the holy qur'an says : " god confirms those who believe by a firm saying in the life of this world and in the hereafter." the qur'an 14:27. also almighty god says : " oh soul at peace ! return to you lord, pleasing, pleased; so, enter among my servant and enter my paradise"; the qur'an 89:28-31; oh god ! make his/her affairs light and render what he/she is going to face. bless him/her with your vision. " fateha.