Consume food only if it is ” Halal “


The translation of an excert borrowed from the fourth chapter of the second part of Kimyâ-i-se’âdet: Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ta’âlâ ‘alaihi wa sallam’ stated: “It is farz for, (i.e. incumbent upon,) every Muslim to earn (a living) by way of halâl.” Earning by way of halâl, in its turn, requires learning what is halâl. Halâls and harâms are known clearly. What is difficult to know is the doubtful area between the two. A person who fails to avoid the doubtful will fall into harâms. This subject, therefore, should cover an extensive area of knowledge to impart. We have provided detailed information in our book entitiled Ihyâ-ul-‘ulûm. In this chapter we will briefly dwell on some salient points of sweeping generally, arranging them in four articles. [One of those four articles is given here.]

Merits of earning by way of halâl, and thawâb for doing so:

The fifty-second [52] âyat-i-karîma of Mu’minûn Sura purports: “O My Prophets ‘salawâtullahi ‘alaihim ajma’în’. Eat what is pure and halâl and worship Me in due manner!” For this reason, Rasûlullah ‘sall-Allâhu ‘alaihi wa sallam’ stated: “It is farz for every Muslim to earn by way of halâl.” At another occasion the Most Blessed Prophet stated: “If a person eats (only) whatsoever is halâl without mixing any harâm with it for forty days running, Allâhu ta’âlâ will fill his heart with nûr (spritual lights). He will make Hikmat flow like rivers into his heart. He will remove worldly love from his heart.” [It is not sinful to work in order to earn what is worldly. What is sinful is love what is worldly and attach one’s heart to the world.] Sa’d bin Abî Waqqâs ‘radiy-Allâhu ‘anh’, (a Sahâbî, the seventh earliest Muslim, and one of those most fortunate ten Muslims who are called the ‘Ashara-i-mubash-shara because they were given the glad tidings that they would enter Paradise after death,) one day entreated: Yâ Rasûlullah (O Messenger of Allah)! Please invoke a blessing on me so that Allâhu ta’âlâ will accept all my prayers!” The following hadîth-i-sherîf contains the reply of the Best of Mankind: “Consume food only if it is halâl, so that your prayers will be accepted!” Another hadîth-i-sherîf reads: “There are many people who eat food that is harâm and wear clothes that are harâm. And it is those very people who raise their hands and say prayers. How could prayers of that sort ever be acceptable?” At another occasion our Blessed Prophet stated: “Consumers of food that is harâm shall find no acceptance for their acts of worship, farz and sunnat ones alike.” [That is, they shall not attain any thawâb.] At some other time he stated: “Supposing a person is wearing clothes that he bought for ten liras (or dollars) one lira of which had been earned by way of harâm. None of the prayers of namâz that he performs with those clothes on will be accepted.” He stated at another occasion: “A body fed on harâms deserves to burn in fire!” Again, he stated: “Those who do not consider whether their property has come to them by way of halâl or harâm shall not attain pity on the part of Allâhu ta’âlâ, regardless of the direction whence they have been hurled into hell.” Again he stated: “Worship consists of ten divisions, nine of which cover earning by way of halâl.” He stated at another occasion: “A person who comes back to his home, tired, because he has worked and earned by way of halâl, will go to bed sinless. (And the next morning) he will get up as a person beloved to Allâhu ta’âlâ.” Again he stated: “Allâhu ta’âlâ declares: I shall be shamed out of calling to account people who avoid (food, clothes, etc. that are) harâm.” He stated: “One dirham of fâiz (interest, received or given) is more sinful than commiting thirty acts of fornication.” And again, he stated: “Alms given out of property that has been acquired by way of harâm will not be accepted. As long as property of that sort is kept, it will serve him as a travel allowance untill he arrives in his destination, Hell.”

One day Abû Bakr ‘radiy-Allâhu ‘anh’ drank the milk brought to him by his servant. Afterwards, however, when he found out that the milk had not been obtained by way of halâl, he inserted his finger to induce vomiting. So great was the trouble he had expelling the milk out of himself that people around him thought he was dying. Then he entreated, Yâ Rabbî (O my Allah)! I have done my best! I trust myself to Your Care against the motes that may have remained in my stomach and in my veins!” The same was done when (he found out that) he had drunk the milk obtained from the camels of zakât belonging to the Beyt-ul-mâl and given to him by mistake. ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar ‘radiy-Allâhu ‘anhuma’ stated: “Perform namâz until you become hunchbacked and fast until you become as thin as a hair; it will not be accepted unless you avoid harâms.” Sufyân-i-Sawrî ‘rahmatullâhi ‘alaih’ stated: “A person who gives alms or has a mosque built or performs another act of charity out of money that is harâm is like one who washes his dirty clothes with urine, which in turn would mean to make the clothes even dirtier.”[1] Yahyâ bin Mu’âz ‘rahmatullâhi ‘aliah’ stated: “Obeying Allâhu ta’âlâ is like a treasue. The key to this treasure is to say prayers, and the notches of the key are the food that is halâl.” Sahl bin ‘Abdullah Tusterî ‘rahmatullâhi ‘alaihi’ stated: “Four things are essential for attaing true îmân: To perform all acts of worship that are farz with adab; to eat food that is halâl; to avoid all harâms, those that are seen and the ones that cannot be seen alike; to observe these three essentials with patience till death.” Our superiors stated: “If a person eats doubtful food for forty days running, his heart will become dark and stained.” ‘Abdullah ibni Mubârak ‘rahmatullâhi ‘alaih’ stated: “I would prefer returning a doubtful qurush (or cent) to its owner to giving a thousand liras (or dollars) as alms.” Sahl bin ‘Abdullah Tusterî stated: “If a person eats food that is harâm his seven limbs will willy-nilly be sinning. Limbs of people who eat food that is halâl will be worshipping. Charitable acts will be easy for them.” There is many another hadîth-i-sherîf, in addition to a number of statements made by our superiors, about the importance of earning by way of halâl. It is for this reason that people of wara’ very strictly avoided harâms. One of them was Vaheb bin Verb ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ‘alaih’, (d. 153 [770 A.D.],) who would not eat something before finding out whence it had come. One day his mother gave him a cup of milk. He asked his mother where and from whom she had bought it and about the source of the money she had paid for it. After finding out about all these things, he asked where the sheep had grazed. It had grazed at a field where other Muslims had rights. He would not drink it. His mother said, “My son? May Allah have mercy on you. Drink it!” He did not drink the milk, and he said: “I would not like to attain His Mercy by sinning against Him.” Bashr-i-Hâfî ‘quddisa sirruh’ was asked about his source of living. “The same source as all others consume from. Yet there is a whole lot of difference between a person who consumes and then rejoinces and one who consumes and then weeps,” was his reply. [The translation from the book Kimyâ-i-se’âdet is ends here.]

FOOTNOTE

[1]: Supposing a person gives alms from property that is harâm and the poor person given the alms says “May Allah be pleased with you [for this charity of yours]” or “May Allah accept it,” even though he knows that the property has been earned by way of harâm, and thereupon the almsgiver or a third person says “Ameen,” in that case both or all three of them become disbelievers. (Birghiwi Sharhi)

It is an act of disbelief to perform an act of charity, e.g., to have a mosque built, out of certain wealth that is known to be harâm and to expect thawâb (blessings, rewards in the Hereafter) for that act. (Radd-ul-mukhtar)

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