Charity without Justice

Charity feeds me one day,

keeps me hungry 364.

You sanctify the Way things Are at my expense:

You feel content for one day’s giving while I starve 364.

I rather you burn your Crescent and Cross (*1)

and starve with me: Then you will see the tyranny of the Way things Are

and the Evil of your Charity:

Your charity  presumes ownership of what you store for a rainy day

while I soak in poverty without a today or tomorrow.

Without Justice,

Charity is Satan’s cloak:

You presume to give what is not yours.

Foot Note 1: The reference to “You rather burn your Crescent and Cross” is not to be taken literally. Both Christianity and Islam are great religions. The purpose is to invite the reader to ponder on the hypocrisy of those who take the shell and abandon the spirit of their religion.

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5 thoughts on “Charity without Justice

  1. I suppose,we must take your reference(*1) literally in order that the disparity that entailed justice be eliminated. Religion’s prime purpose is conditioning human beings to take this diparity for granted. Because people have internalized these difference between men with the help of religion and other pedagogical instituitions on the first place, charity became necessary to keep alive the disadvantaged–thus justice is an artificial concept as well. We wouldn’t have needed charity, nor justice nor religion to live adiquately, had it not been for socio-economic arrangements like the Market which brought natural equity out of balance.

    • A very insightful comment. I struggle with what you are saying because at times religion can be a source of movements for social justice, but the problem is that most of the time it embraces the status quo of social injustice.

      My struggle comes from having read about individuals who pursued both. For instance, Ali ibne Abi Talib, who was a religious man, said the following:

      Justice is superior to charity.
      Charity puts things away from their proper places while Justice puts things where they belong.

      Ali also said that whenever a person spends a night hungry another person is over fed- it is because of unequal distribution of wealth.

      He was, not unsurprisingly, assassinated.

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