“Man finds it hard to get what he wants, because he does not want the best; God finds it hard to give, because He would give the best, and man will not take it.”

― George MacDonald

A man was obliged to pay a certain sum of denarius in Zakat, in the early days of Al-Islam. It was only about 2.5% of his wealth, but it still seemed like a huge amount when 2.5% is multiplied by 100, 1000, 10'000 dinars.

He asked the Prophet's Companion Fulan, wondering if he might be allowed discounts. The Companion told him that his due was actually more than the calculated amount. Then he asked another Companion. And another. The last one threw his hands in the air, "THERE IS NO ANSWER GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU!  Go seek the Caliph's advice."

He found the Caliph Umar bin Al-Khattab at his usual hour to receive audience. The Caliph listened quietly as the man recited the history of his Zakat problems, the discontent that in all the learned men he met, none had given him a satisfactory answer to what duty he was due, and that as subject of his judicial territory, Caliph's word would be the last.

The Caliph emphatically rephrased the man's words, "Ye have went to this, this and that Companion asking them the same question concerning Zakat and none of the answers have satisfied ye?"

"Yes, and it is only in desperation that I seek justice from al-Farouk (The sword drawn between right and wrong)."

The Caliph's face brightened, then started towards the private part of his house, saying "Ruwaydan. Ruwaydan."

Wait a minute. Wait a little.

The man beamed with hopefulness. Al-Farouk has a solution. And from the looks of things, the man was going to get the silver bullet to all of his Zakat issues.

The Caliph resurfaced from inside the house with his famous sword, unsheathed and drawn, in his hand. He said, "Ye have questioned God's rights in yer wealth. Ye have questioned the counsel of learned men. Ye shall not question either evermore, once the sword speaketh its word."

And the sword swung. And the head rolled off. And the Farouk delivered its unquestioning duty as servant of God and man.

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