“The best charity is that given when one has surplus wealth; and the upper hand is better than the lower. But begin [giving charity] with your dependents.” Collected by an-Nasaa’ee and Ahmad [S.J.S. 1115] and by Muslim (Sahih Muslim, vol. 2, p. 495, no. 2254). The upper hand is the hand which gives and the lower hand is the hand which receives. That is, the benefactor is better than the recipient with regards to the act of charity. Begging is forbidden in Islaam except under exceptional circumstances. The Prophet (PBUH) stated that one who begs without real need will come before Allaah on the Day of Judgment without skin on his face (Sahih Al-Bukhari, vol. 2, p. 321, no. 553 and Sahih Muslim, vol. 2, p. 479, no. 2265).