Islamic View on Intoxication
In Chapter Al Maidah, verse 90: “O believers! Al Khamra (intoxicants) and Al Mayser (gambling) and Al Ansab (animals sacrificed for idols) and Al Azlam (arrows for seeking luck or decision) are an abomination of Satan’s handiwork. So avoid them in order that you may be successful.” The term “khamra” in the Quran is referring to alcohol. The term khamra comes for the Arabic word “khimar” meaning anything that covers the head like a hat, scarf, turban, etc. Therefore, khamra means any intoxicants you insert into your body that will influence your brain and influence your intellectual abilities and decision-making.
Harms of Intoxication
Let’s be realistic, all people are aware of the problems that are a result of drugs and alcohol, whether it’s the high number of deaths due to driving under the influence, physical and mental diseases or even social issues. At the end, the satisfaction or benefits gained from drinking are much less than the damage. Also, the above verse clearly states that consuming intoxicants is one of Satan’s methods and he uses it as a tool to make you fail in this life and the hereafter: “Satan wants only to excite enmity and hatred between you with intoxicants and gambling and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah and from prayer. So, will you not then abstain?” (Ch. Al-Maidah, 91). Satan is the enemy of God and his purpose in this life is to spread corruption and destroy humanity and alcohol is one of the easiest ways.
Replacing Intoxication with Prayers
Most people drink not for enjoyment, but rather to relief themselves from the stress of life and their painful memories. As Muslims, we strongly believe that the hearts are in Allah’s hands and He does with them as He pleases. There is no way that committing a sin like getting intoxicated will bring you the results that you are looking for. If you want peace and tranquility, then you need to follow the righteous path and it is never achieved by being a follower of Satan. Prayer in Islam is a major healer for humans as it is a practice of remembrance of Allah, and that is why we do the five daily prayers. The constant praise and remembrance of Allah is our way of living and it is the only way to drop all the negative elements in your life: “Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah. Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah the hearts are assured (tranquility and comfort)” (Ch. Al-Ra’d, 28).
Since we established that intoxicants are forbidden in Islam, selling and buying intoxicants are also prohibited in Islam. In fact, selling alcohol as a trade will be a curse on your life and will remove all blessings in your money and family. I understand that in Western countries having Alcohol in your restaurants or stores brings traffic and results in high sales but if you leave something for Allah, then He will replace it with something better and bless your business. The prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) said: “Allah cursed khamr (alcohol), the one who drinks it, the one who pours it, the one who sells it, the one who buys it, the one who makes it, the one who it is made for, the one who carries it, the one who it is carried to, and the one who consumes the money from its sale” (Sunan Abu Dawud).
For a new Muslim, it might be a difficult task to make at start but know that your sacrifices will have high rewards and you will see good results right away inshAllah (if Allah wills). It’s your decision to drink from this worldly, harmful alcohol, which will lead you to displease Allah, or drink from the pure rivers of alcohol waiting for you in paradise.