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Qur'an: 9:34

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Al-Kanz Verse
Verse's Information
Sura: Qur'an 9
Verse: 34
Juz': 10
Content Information
Place of Revelation: Medina
Topic: Illegitimate possessions and oppositions to Islam by Jewish clergies and Christian monks
Related Verses: Qur'an 9:35

Al-Kanz Verse, or the Verse of Treasure, is verse 34 of Qur'an 9 in which Jewish clergies and Christian monks are condemned for treasuring up money. "Kanz": is to treasure up too much wealth without paying God's due shares from it. The verse concerns issues such as illegitimate possessions and oppositions to Islam by Jewish clergies and Christian monks. It is called "al-Kanz" (treasure) because it and the subsequent verse promise divine punishments for the treasure.

Text and Translation

Contents

The word, "kanz," and its cognates appear nine times in the Qur'an.[1] However, only verse thirty four of Qur'an 9 has come to be known as al-Kanz Verse, because this and its subsequent verse threaten divine punishment for treasuring up wealth. Literally, "kanz" means to gather and store.[2] In religious terminologies, it came to mean the accumulation of excessive money without paying its religious due shares.[3]

Exegetes have interpreted and discussed this verse as a reprehension of illegitimate possessions and opposition to Islam by Jewish clergies and Christian monks[4] and as a prohibition of treasuring up wealth.[5]

Interpretation of the Verse and the View of Exegetes

A number of exegetes believe that the first part of the verse is an explanation of its preceding verses in which Jewish and Christian clergies and monks[6] are reprehended. This verse characterizes them as illegitimately manipulating people's money and property.[7] To "wrongfully eat up people's wealth" is said to consist in receiving bribes for the issuance of rulings[8] in favor of the powerful[9] and to sell places in the Heaven in exchange for money,[10] as well as taking possession of people's property in illegitimate ways.[11] Moreover, "bar from the way of Allah" is interpreted by Quranic exegetes as referring to actions by Jewish clergies and Christian monks against Islam,[12] their concealment of divine truths,[13] and their prevention of people from converting to Islam.[14]

The majority of exegetes believe that the main theme of the second part of the verse (beginning with "and those who treasure up…") to be the prohibition of treasuring up wealth.[15] They take "and" at the beginning of this part to be isti'nafi (initiatory conjunction), and its following phrase to be independent of the previous part. Thus, this latter part is addressed to the general audience, including both non-Muslims such as Jews and Christians and Muslims.[16] In his al-Mizan, 'Allama Tabataba'i] quotes al-Suyuti as saying that when the Qur'an was compiled by 'Uthman, an attempt was made to remove the conjunctive, "and," so that the prohibition of, and the threat of punishment for, treasuring up wealth be restricted to the audience of the first part, that is, Jewish clergies and Christian monks, and thus, Muslims be excluded from it. However, due to oppositions by Abu Dharr, the attempt failed.[17]

The Notion and Conditions of Kanz

It is agreed by all exegetes that it is prohibited to treasure up and collect wealth.[18] However, they disagree over the notion of "kanz" and its limits, stemming from differences in relevant sources of hadiths.[19] In short, different views of the notion of "kanz" can be classified in four groups:

  • If the zakat of the collected wealth is paid, then it does not count as kanz. Al-Shaykh al-Tusi, al-Tabrisi, and others appeal to a hadith from the Prophet (s) concerning the definition of "kanz" (and they do not donate it) to show that it has to do with a refusal to pay the zakat.[20]
  • Obligatory payments in a collected wealth go beyond zakat, and thus, if all these religious payments are made, the wealth does not count as "kanz." Al-Fayd al-Kashani and 'Allama Tabataba'i[21] believe that donation includes obligatory payments other than zakat as well as recommended cases.[22] Some people cite Abu Dharr's argument from the verse in his objection to 'Uthman's and Mu'awiya's (as well as their companions') accumulation of wealth, to show that the notion of kanz goes beyond the payment of zakat.[23] In addition to hadiths, Allama Tabataba'i also appeals to the term, "in the way of Allah," as an explication of the range of kanz and donation.[24]
  • It is prohibited to accumulate wealth if it goes beyond the necessities of life, regardless of whether zakat and other religious debts are paid.[25] This is maintained by Muhammad Rida Hakimi and some Sunni exegetes.[26]
  • Makarim Shirazi believes that in ordinary economic circumstances of Muslims, one's wealth does not count as kanz if its zakat is paid, but in other circumstances other obligatory payments should be made in order for it not to count as kanz.[27]

In Islamic jurisprudence and economics, the issue of kanz has been considered by Muslim jurists and intellectuals,[28] although the notion of kanz in Islamic economics is different in both its notion and instances from that of exegetical texts.[29]

Notes

  1. Sarmadī, "Āyay-i kanz," p. 121-122.
  2. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 28.
  3. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 28.
  4. Ṭūsī, al-Tibyān, vol. 5, p. 210.
  5. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390; Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 332-354.
  6. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  7. Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 332-354.
  8. Ṭūsī, al-Tibyān, vol. 5, p. 210.
  9. Makārim-i Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  10. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  11. Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 249; Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 47.
  12. Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 47.
  13. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  14. Ṭūsī, al-Tibyān, vol. 5, p. 210.
  15. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 28.
  16. Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 47.
  17. Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 256.
  18. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 33-40.
  19. Maḥmūdī Gulpāyigānī, "Taḥlīl-i fiqhī-yi ahkām-i kanz," p. 143-119.
  20. Ṭūsī, al-Tibyān, vol. 5, p. 210; ʿArūsī al-Huwayzī, Tafsīr-i nūr al-thaqalayn, vol. 2, p. 213; Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 47.
  21. Kāshānī, Tafsīr al-ṣāfī, vol. 2, p. 41; Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 332-354.
  22. Ṭabrisī, Majmaʿ al-bayān, vol. 5, p. 47.
  23. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  24. Ṭabāṭabāyī, al-Mīzān, vol. 9, p. 332-354.
  25. Ḥakīmī, al-Ḥayāt, vol. 3.
  26. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 23-40.
  27. Makārim Shīrāzī, Tafsīr-i nimūna, vol. 7, p. 390.
  28. Maḥmūdī, "Taḥlīl-i fiqhī-yi aḥkām-i kanz," p. 119-143.
  29. Mīr Muʾizzī, "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād," p. 28.

References

  • ʿArūsī al-Huwayzī, ʿAbd ʿAlī b. Jumʿa al-. Tafsīr-i nūr al-thaqalayn. Qom: Ismāʿīlīyān, 1412 AH.
  • Ḥakīmī, Muḥammad Riḍā & Muḥammad ʿAlī. Al-Ḥayāt. Second edition. Qom: Daftar-i Nashr-i Farhang-i Islāmī, 1373 Sh.
  • Fayḍ al-Kāshānī, Mullā Muḥsin al-. Tafsīr al-ṣāfī. Tehran: Intishārāt al-Ṣadr, 1415 AH.
  • Maḥmūdī Gulpāyigānī, Sayyid Maḥmūd. "Taḥlīl-i fiqhī-yi ahkām-i kanz." Fiqh wa Mabānīy-I Ḥuqūq-i Islāmī 2 (1389 Sh): 119-144.
  • Makārim Shīrāzī, Nāṣir. Tafsīr-i nimūna. 32th edition. Tehran: Islāmīyya, 1374 Sh.
  • Mīr Muʾizzī, Sayyid Ḥusayn. "Mafhūm-i kanz az dīdgāh-i ʿilm-i iqtiṣād." Mufid 35 (1382 Sh): 23-40.
  • Sarmadī, Maḥmūd. "Āyay-i kanz." In Dānishnāma-yi muʿāṣir-i Qurʾān. Qom: Salmānzāda, 1396 Sh.
  • Ṭabāṭabāyī, Sayyid Muḥammad Ḥusayn. Al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Qom: Ismāʿīlīyān, 1371 Sh.
  • Ṭabrisī, Faḍl b. al-Ḥasan al-. Majmaʿ al-bayān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Beirut: Aʿlamī, 1415 AH.
  • Ṭūsī, Muḥammad b. al-Ḥasan al-. Al-Tibyān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. Beirut: Dār Iḥyāʾ al-Turāth al-ʿArabī, [n.d].