In the pre-Islamic era, also known as Jahiliyyah (period of ignorance), the Arabs were known for worshipping multiple idols, magnifying their dads and forefathers, adopting all their belief system, in addition to tribalism, racism and sexism. The Qur'an and the message of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) were revealed not only to solve those problems but also to provide guidance that fits all problems of humanity.
Instead, we will try to examine the etiquette of spending and dealing with money in Islam, and hence will leave the H/H answer up to you, based on YOUR understanding of YOUR situation.
In the age of social media and satellite channels, the Jones need not to be your next door neighbors, they might be a random family living on the other part of the world. They are definitely not happy with what they have (if they really own it) and are trying to compete with their own version (or perception) of the Jones family, and this infinite loop continues endlessly.
(On Islam / 24 March 2013)
Alfalah Consulting - Kuala Lumpur: www.alfalahconsulting.com
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