Abu Zar Ghafari (R.A.)

The Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) said, “If I possessed gold to the extent of mount Uhud, I would not like to keep any of it with me for more than three days, except what I put aside for paying a debt”.
Note: Mount Uhud is well known as the biggest mountain near Madinah. Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) has said that, if he (Peace be upon him) had as much gold as the mountain of Uhud, he (Peace be upon him) would like to give it away within three days and would not keep any portion of it with himself.
This is simply meant to convey that it will take at least three days to distribute that huge amount of gold. Of course, if there was debt to be paid and the creditor was not present, some portion of gold could be retained till the debt could be paid. This shows that payment of a debt is more important than Sadaqah. It was the noble habit of Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) not to hoard anything. Anas (R.A.) who was the special attendant of Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) says that he (Peace be upon him) never kept anything for the next day. It is also said that he (Peace be upon him) never paid Zakat; as he (Peace be upon him) never had the amount or property till extend on which it is paid.
Once somebody presented three birds to Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him), one of which he (Peace be upon him) gave to his own attendant. The attendant brought back that bird the following day to Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) who said to him “Have I not told you not to keep anything for the next day? Allah Jalla Shanohu Himself will provide food for the next day.” Samurah (R.A.) has quoted Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) as saying that he (Peace be upon him) checked the store cabinet frequently to make sure that nothing was left in it, lest he (Peace be upon him) should die with something left behind.
Abu Zar Ghafari (R.A.), a famous and extremely pious Sahabi (Companion of Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him)) had particular aversion to wealth, about which several incidents have been reported, one of which has been related under the saying given above. He (R.A.) says, “I was once accompanying Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) when he(Peace be upon him) looked at Mount Uhud and said, “If this mountain were to turn into gold and be given to me, I would not like to keep a single Dinaar of it with me for more than three days except that which I put aside to pay a debt”. He (R.A.) added, “Many of those who have much property shall gain scanty rewards, except for those who say, “Take this and this, before them, behind them, on their right and on their left”. (The narrator made a gesture indicating that they spend profusely with both their hands, distributing money to people around them). (Bukhari)
In Mishkaat, another incident has been related about Abu Zar (R.A.). Abu Zar (R.A.) was once sitting with Usman (R.A.) during the period of the latter’s Caliphate when he (R.A.) told Kab (R.A.) that Abdur Rahman (R.A.) had died leaving behind some property and asked him what he (R.A.) thought about it. Kab (R.A.) replied that there was no harm in leaving such property if he (R.A.) had given what was due on it to Allah.
Hearing this, Abu Zar (R.A.) raised the stick he (R.A.) was carrying, struck Kab (R.A.) and said that he (R.A.) had heard Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) saying, “If I possessed gold equal in quantity to this mountain, which I could spend and which were accepted from me, I would not like to leave behind even six ‘Auqias’ (a small weight) of it”. Abu Zar (R.A.) then turned to Usman (R.A.) and adjured him three times to tell him if he (R.A.) had not heard Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) saying these words. Usman said that he (R.A.) had.
Imaam Bukhari Rahmathullah alaihe has related still another story about Abu Zar (R.A.), on the authority of Ahnaf Ibne Qais Rahmathullah alaihe, who says, “I was once sitting with a group of the Quraish in Madinah Munawwarah when a man came there.
He (R.A.) had stiff, dry and disheveled hair, was dressed in coarse cloth and looked an ordinary man. He (R.A.) stopped by their side, greeted them saying, ‘Assalam-o-Alaikum’ and then addressing the people, said “Give those who hoard up treasures, tidings of a rock heated in the fire of Jahannam (Hell), which will be placed on their breasts; its heat will cause their flesh to melt and to boil over their shoulders. The rock will then be put on their shoulders causing it to flow from their breasts”. Saying this, he went into the Masjid and sat down beside a pillar.
I did not know who this Divine was; so, I followed him (R.A.), sat near him (R.A.) and said, “The people gathered there did not pay heed to what you said; they rather seemed to dislike your saying so”. The divine (R.A.) replied, “They are fools who lack proper understanding, my (R.A.) most loved friend once told me”. When I asked him who was his (R.A.) most loved friend, he (R.A.) replied, “Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) was my most loved friend who once said to me, ‘Abu Zar, do you see Mount Uhud over there? I said that I did” (Thinking that he wanted to send me on an errand and was telling me how much time remained before sunset.) He (Peace be upon him) then said, “If I had gold to the extent of that mountain I would love to spend all of it except for three Dinaars”.
Other versions of the Hadith explain why he (Peace be upon him) would like to keep three Dinaars. After this Abu Zar (R.A.) said, “These people have no sense; they go on hoarding wealth. By Allah, I neither expect them to give me any money, nor need to ask them anything about my religion! Then, why should I feel afraid or hesitate to tell them exactly what I believe to be true?” (Fatah)