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The Definition of Sadaqah and Zakat

According to Islam, the religion of peace invites all of us to help and support each other.

Islam calls for society’s unification of classes by giving money and help to all people who need it. 

As Allah (S.W.T.) said in the Quran: 

 The believers are brothers, so reconcile between your brothers, and be mindful of Allah so that you may receive mercy.

(Qur’an, 49:10)

Muslims, by nature, give Sadaqah and Zakat because they care about each other, so they help and support other people in the community.

Islam always invites us to share and give to people in need through specific roles that are easy to apply and necessary for everyone.

The Definition of Sadaqah and Zakat

Our beloved Prophet once said:

An-Nu‘mān ibn Bashīr (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (PBUH) said: “The believers, in their mutual love, compassion, and sympathy are like a single body; if one of its organs suffers, the whole body will respond to it with sleeplessness and fever.”  

These roles are how to apply Zakat and Sadaqah, whom to give to, and how we can give to less fortunate brothers and sisters in Islam.

Sadaqah and Zakat might be similar to some people, but there are many differences.


It is a type of Sadaqah that is an obligatory payment for all Muslims to give, it is the third pillar of the five pillars of Islam, and it is compulsory. 

Zakat should be given at a specific time of the year. When you have to provide Zakat, you should make sure that your money has reached the nisab and you can calculate your Zakat


It is a charity given voluntarily to Allah, and it is given to be closer to Allah Almighty.

Sadaqah has many types; it is not specified as zakat; it can be money or other things mentioned in the Quran. 

Some of the Sadaqah types:

  1. Teaching people.
  2. Saying words that make people happy.
  3. Smiling to people.
  4. Sharing food.
  5. Helping people.
  6. Care about family and children.


These are not the only types of Sadaqah; however, they are the most popular; the Quran contains many verses about Sadaqah

  • Charitable men and charitable women who have loaned Allah a good loan—it will be multiplied for them, and them is a generous reward. (Surah al-Hadid, 18).
  • In surah two, verse thirty-three Allah says: “And be steadfast in prayer; practice regular charity, and bow down your heads with those who bow down (in worship).From the Qur’an, we learn that giving is simply worth “the reward with their Lord: on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:274).

Also, every giving as Sadaqah can increase 700 times as Allah Almighty said in the Quran: 

The example of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah is like a seed [of grain] which grows seven spikes; in each point is a hundred grains. And Allah multiplies [His reward] for whom He wills. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing. (Surah Al-Baqarah, 261).

What Differentiates Zakat from Sadaqah in Particular

If you thought that Zakat and Sadaqah were the same, they were not. Zakat and Sadaqah are not that different, but their way and method are different from one another. 

Sadaqah donations come in many forms, whether as money, kind words, or by doing good deeds for others, and it is totally optional and doable at any time. However, Zakat is obligatory for all Muslims, and it is donated only by giving a certain amount of money. 

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Is Sadaqah and Zakat The Same?

No, they are not. Zakat is obligatory, and Sadaqah is optional.

Is Zakat a Form of Sadaqah?

Yes, Zakat is a form of Sadaqah.

Are Zakat and Charity the Same Thing?

No, Zakat is donating money; charity can be anything else added to giving money.

What is the Difference Between Sadaqah and Waqf?

Sadaqah is made in the form of a “waqf, and it is everything usable, like feeding or giving money and other forms of charity. As for waqf, you can’t sell it or dispose of it even as it is not distributed.