Gift is an expression of love. Exchanging presents strengthens relationship between the giver and the recipient. Giving gifts, no matter who it is for, is an investment in the relationship you have with the recipient. Exchanging gift is important and very much encouraged in Islam. Several Quranic verses and authentic hadith emphasizes on the significance of gifts. Let’s explore why gift giving is so highly encouraged and the importance of gifts in Islam.
Why should you give gifts?
TO SEEK THE PLEASURE OF ALLAH
How can you seek the pleasure of Allah when giving gifts to someone? By aligning your intention. Gifts promote harmony and love between Muslims and Allah swt is pleased when His slaves live in harmony.
When giving gifts, if you make an intention to connect your hearts with the recipient, spread joy and warmth, strengthen your bonds and earn pleasure of Allah, the barakah will flow. When you give gifts and don’t want to receive something in return, it is considered as if you are giving sadaqa. When giving gifts, do it with the intention of performing a righteous deed, increasing the bond between you and the recipient and seek the pleasure of Allah swt.
TO FULFILL A SUNNAH
“Exchange gifts, as that will lead to increasing your love to one another.”
Our beloved Prophet (saw) strongly recommended to exchange gifts with one another with the intention of promoting mutual love and affection.
Do you know there are sunnah ways to give and receive gifts? When giving gifts, give the best within your means. Not something you found in the clearance section or something you don’t like.
“None of you will believe until you love for your brother what you love for yourself.”
– Bukhari & Muslim
No gift is too small in the sights of Allah swt. So, when accepting a gift, receive it with pleasure and do not look down upon your gift.
“Whoever is offered a sweet-smelling flower should accept it, and not reject it because it is a very ordinary thing. Its fragrance is a thing of joy.”
TO REMOVE ILL-FEELINGS
The Prophet (saw) said:
”If you shake hands with each other, your dislike of one another will disappear; and if you give gifts to each other, malice will disappear.”
Giving gifts does not have to be for special occasions only. When given with a sincere heart, gift heals ill feeling and misunderstanding between the giver and the receiver. Gift is a great way to mend a relationship.
“Give gifts, for indeed gifts removes bad feeling from the chest. Do not let a person look down upon (the gifts given by his or) her neighbor, even if it be a sheep shank.”
AS A SIGN OF GRATITUDE
It is related by Abu Hurairah that the Apostle of God said:
“Whoever failed to give thanks to anyone who did a favor to him failed to give thanks to God.”
Musnad-i-Ahmad and Tirmizi
In Islam, we are taught to be grateful. Gift giving is a great way to express your gratitude for someone.
Gifting has two-fold benefits in Islam – to earn the pleasure of Allah swt and strengthening bonds between the gift giver and recipient among others. A gift doesn’t have to be expensive, but make it a thoughtful one. When you give gifts with ihsan (excellence), it will always be appreciated.