God invites us to this very particular investment through Sadaqah Jariyah. One of the most amazing concepts in Islam is Sadaqah Jariyah. Sadaqah Jariyah is simply a one-time investment with recurring rewards and benefits. It is a one-off charity but with recurring and perpetual reward. It is this type of Sadaqah which the Prophet (PBUH) said will continuously benefit a person even after their death. The Prophet (PBUH) said:
When a person dies, all their deeds end except three: a continuing charity, beneficial knowledge and a child who prays for them,(Hadith, Muslim)
Therefore, Muslims are eager to give charity which will continue to have the benefit to people after their death and continue to earn them a reward.
Any charity which continues to have positive effects on a community in the long-term can be considered a Sadaqah Jariyah. Some examples include:
- Building homes, schools and hospitals
- Installing durable water systems
- Cultivating crops which provides food for years to come
- Helping a family start a business which continues generating profit for future generations
- Building a place of worship
In fact, we are encouraged in the Sunnah and from the practices of the Sahabah to consider Sadaqah Jariyah.
Sad ibn Abi Waqqas sought permission to donate his estate in charity, he was given an allowance to do so, up to one-third of his estate. As such, when a Muslim pass away, two-thirds are fixed for the needs of his inheritors.
These two-thirds are left behind for the worldly needs of others. However, one-third is for us which we can take with us in the next life to help us for eternity.
That can take place through giving one third into Sadaqah Jariyah.