On ‘Trust’

“Verily, Allah commands you to return the ‘Amanat’ to their owners”. (Qur’an, Sura 4:58).

‘Amanat’ (the word used in the ayat mentioned above) means keeping the trust faithfully and returning it without any change or alteration whenever demanded by the person who gave it to you. It is one of the highly emphasized virtues in Islam. The Holy Prophet himself was the embodiment of ‘Amanat’. Long before he received the call from Allah to declare his Prophethood, he was popularly known as ‘As-Sadiq-ul-Amin’ (The Truthful and Trustworthy) among the people of Arabia.

It is very revealing to see that after the declaration of his Prophethood (at the age of 40) his opponents accused him of everything from being a poet or sorcerer to being possessed by a genie; but never once, in this long period of conflict, did they accuse him of being untruthful or untrustworthy.

On the contrary, that very person, who was conspiring to silence the voice of God by killing him, continued to deposit their valuables with him – the very man whose destruction was the only aim of their life.

When the Holy Prophet had to leave Mecca because of the said plots, he left his cousin, Ali bin Abi Talib, behind, instructing him to return all those things to their rightful owners before joining the Holy Prophet at Medina.

Imam Zainul Abedeen, son of Imam Husain, used to say: “If the murderer of my father gives me in trust the sword which he used in killing my father (martyred at Karbala), I will return it to him whenever he comes back demanding its return”.