A pious man once told me that an angel of blessing will visit our home and spread his wings over our house as soon as we plan to have a feast. But the minute we start counting how much money we could get from the feast, the angel will fold his wings and leave us.
To get the full benefit of holding a feast, the intention must be clear - to get the blessing of Allah. Of course the procedure mus be right too.
All people, irrespective of social standing, should be invited and not discrimiated in the seating. It is said that it is not mandatory for us to attend a feast if the host does not invite poor people.
The culture of giving money to the host after a feast is fast becoming a must for guests. The sight of the host standing in front of the house wearing 'baju Melayu' with pockets full of money is common.
I don't mind giving, but what I do not like is the fact that when the feast is heald at the middle of the month, when there is not much 'excess money' is present in the family. What then? Rather than being embarassed with coming empty-handed, many choose not to attend.
In a state that I won't mention here, it goes further. The host prepares a notebook and records down the names of guests and how much he/she gives. When asked, they said that it is for them to pay back to the guest when they hold a similar feast.
I have also come across a host who openly declares that they do not expect guests to give money or present during the feast. They think that their good intention of holding the feats will be nullified if they accept the money.
No matter what, all I am hoping is both the gusest and the host should be clear of their intention and not to go overboard in their action.