Smoking is a widespread habit around the world, with more than a billion people smoking tobacco products. However, smoking is not just a personal choice, but it is also a topic of great concern for religious and moral communities.
Islam, one of the world’s largest religions, has a strict code of conduct that emphasizes the importance of physical, mental, and spiritual well-being.
Smoking has been a contentious issue in Islamic communities, and there have been debates about whether smoking is permissible or not in Islam.
In this article, we will explore the Islamic perspective on smoking in detail, looking at the reasons why it is considered haram, and what Islamic scholars have to say about it.
Table of Contents
What is smoking?
Smoking is the inhalation of smoke produced by burning tobacco or other substances. The smoke is usually produced by burning cigarettes, cigars, pipes, hookahs, or other tobacco products.
Smoking is a common habit around the world, and it is estimated that there are over a large number of smokers worldwide.
The smoke produced by smoking contains many chemicals, including nicotine, tar, carbon monoxide, and other harmful substances.
Cigarettes, the most commonly smoked tobacco product, are made up of shredded tobacco leaves that are rolled into a paper tube.
The tobacco is often treated with additives to enhance flavor and nicotine delivery. When a cigarette is lit, the tobacco is burned, and smoke is produced, which is then inhaled by the smoker.
What does Islam say about smoking?
The Islamic perspective on smoking is not straightforward, as there is no specific reference to smoking in the Quran or Hadith.
˹They are˺ those who spend neither wastefully nor stingily, but moderately in between.
However, Islamic scholars have discussed the issue of smoking in light of the Quran and Hadith, and they have come to a consensus that smoking is haram (forbidden) in Islam.
Why is smoking haram in Islam?
Smoking is a well-known cause of various problems, and it can have significant negative effects on the body and in society. Here are some of the serious issues that can arise from smoking:
Lung cancer is a type of cancer that begins in the lungs and can spread to other parts of the body. It is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths worldwide, and smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer.
When a person smokes, the smoke from the tobacco is inhaled into the lungs, where it can cause damage to the cells that line the lungs. Over time, this damage can lead to the development of cancerous cells.
Lung cancer often does not cause symptoms in its early stages, making it difficult to detect. However, as the cancer grows, it can cause symptoms such as coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain, fatigue, and unexplained weight loss.
When a person smokes, the chemicals in tobacco smoke can cause the arteries to narrow and become blocked, reducing blood flow to the heart.
This can lead to the development of coronary artery disease, which is a major cause of heart attacks. Smoking also causes inflammation in the blood vessels, which can lead to the formation of blood clots that can cause a heart attack or stroke.
In addition to increasing the risk of heart disease, smoking can also make it more difficult to manage existing heart conditions. For example, smokers with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes are at a higher risk of complications such as heart attack and stroke.
Smoking can cause respiratory problems such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma. It can also exacerbate existing respiratory conditions, making them more severe.
Weak immune System:
Smoking can weaken the immune system, making it harder for the body to fight off infections. This means that smokers are more likely to develop infections.
Smoking can also impair the function of immune cells that help to fight infections, such as white blood cells.
In addition to increasing the risk of respiratory infections, smoking can also increase the risk of other infections such as urinary tract infections and gum disease.
Reproductive Health Problems:
Smoking can cause fertility problems in both men and women. It can also increase the risk of complications during pregnancy, such as premature birth and low birth weight.
Waste of money:
Islam teaches us to use our wealth in a responsible and productive way, and wasting money on something that is harmful. In some countries, governments have imposed high taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products in an effort to discourage smoking and fund anti-smoking campaigns.
Despite this, many smokers continue to spend a significant portion of their income on cigarettes, often at the expense of other important expenses such as food, housing, and Body care.
Harmful to others:
Smoking not only harms the smoker but also harms those around them. Secondhand smoke can cause serious problems for non-smokers, especially children and pregnant women.
Islam teaches us to avoid anything that harms others, and smoking is therefore considered haram because it harms others.
Smoking can also lead to other disasters, such as when a person ignites a cigarette near flammable materials or in the presence of a gas leak.
In some cases, this can result in explosions or other catastrophic events that can cause injury or death. These disasters highlight the serious risks associated with smoking, not only for the smoker but also for those around them.
These disasters highlight the serious risks associated with smoking, not only for the smoker but also for those around them.
Smoking is often a form of addiction, and addiction can lead to immoral behavior. Addiction can cause people to prioritize their addiction over other important aspects of their life, such as their responsibilities, and obligations.
This can lead to neglect of family, friends, and work, and can also result in financial and legal problems.
Social issues caused by smoking:
Smoking can cause several social issues, both for the smoker and those around them. One of the most significant social issues caused by smoking is the negative impact on relationships.
Smokers may face social isolation and exclusion from groups of non-smokers, and their smoking habits may cause conflicts in relationships with family, friends, and coworkers.
Smoking can also contribute to social inequalities and disparities. The tobacco industry has been known to target vulnerable populations, such as those in low-income communities and developing countries, leading to higher rates of smoking and related life problems in these populations.
Cause of other sins:
Smoking can lead to a variety of harmful behaviors and vices. For example, smoking is often associated with drinking alcohol and using drugs, which can further damage one’s fitness and lead to other sins
What do Islamic scholars say about smoking?
Islamic scholars have discussed the issue of smoking in light of the Quran and Hadith, and they have come to a consensus that smoking is haram. Here are some statements from prominent Islamic scholars:
Muslim scholar Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, states:
“The reported juristic disagreement among Muslim scholars on the ruling concerning smoking, since its appearance and spread, is not usually based on differences between legal proofs, but on the difference in the verification of the cause on which the ruling is based.
They all agree that whatever is proved to be harmful to the body and mind is prohibited, yet they differ whether this ruling applies to smoking.
Some of them claimed that smoking has some benefits, others assured that it had few disadvantages compared to its benefits, whereas a third group maintained that it had neither benefits nor bad effects. This means that if scholars had been certain about the harmfulness of smoking, then they would undoubtedly have considered it prohibited”.
“In view of the harm caused by tobacco, growing, trading in and smoking of tobacco are judged to be haram (forbidden). The Prophet, peace be upon him, is reported to have said, ‘Do not harm yourselves or others.’ Furthermore, tobacco is unwholesome, and God says in the Qur’an that the Prophet, peace be upon him, ‘enjoins upon them that which is good and pure, and forbids them that which is unwholesome.” (Permanent Committee of Academic Research and Fatwa, Saudi Arabia).
Smoking can also have broader societal impacts, including harm to the environment and contributing to social and economic inequalities.
Additionally, the addictive nature of smoking can lead to immoral behavior and neglect of important responsibilities and relationships.
In Islam, smoking is considered a violation of the principle of preserving one’s well-being. The Quran encourages Muslims to take care of their bodies, and smoking goes against this principle.
Quitting smoking can be a challenging process, but there are many resources available to help individuals quit, including nicotine replacement therapy, counseling, and support groups.
All these reasons which are above mentioned reflect that smoking is injurious to life and Islam is the religion that teaches us that good health is a blessing and restraining its followers to do which causes haram.
Also Read: 5 Haram Things Mentioned in Quran