Muslims in South Africa have been told to quit smoking because of fears of contamination of cigarettes with pig produce and alcohol. A halaal products organization, the South African National Halaal Association, or Sanha, made the claim in mosques and via the Internet.
Sanha stated that “Muslim Jurists have for a long time condemned cigarette smoking.” Now that makes plenty of sense. Having read the Quran from cover to cover in Arabic Buy Plug Play Pods for sale , I have no doubt that if the prophet Muhammad were alive today, he would forbid the smoking of cigarettes.
Now Muslim-owned businesses are being urged to stop selling cigarettes. I think this is also sensible. How can a God-fearing person possibly knowingly sentence people to a slow and painful death? How can a Muslim pray five times a day and then go to his shop and sell cigarettes to a pregnant mother, for example?
And how can any dutiful Muslim wash and take care of their body as prescribed by Islam and then go and put the many poisons from smoking cigarettes in their body? This not only makes no sense but is a great hypocrisy indeed.
Whether cigarettes contain pigs’ blood or rum or wine products should be irrelevant. As a matter of fact, any doctor would agree that there is far worse in a cigarette than any minute amount of pig or alcohol product can possibly be.
South Africa’s largest cigarette manufacturer, British American Tobacco SA (Batsa), naturally denies it all in a report in the local Cape Argus, a local newspaper in Cape Town. However, what the cigarette manufacturers cannot deny is the thousands of deaths and illnesses their industry regularly causes. Cigarettes are the leading health concern in South Africa after HIV/AIDS. And that is not in dispute by anybody, regardless of their religion.
So if you are a Muslim smoker, what should you do? Do you wait to find out if there is indeed pig and alcohol additions to cigarettes? Do you find a way to quit in the meantime? And what if you quit and then find that cigarettes are free of these things. Do you then take up smoking again, fully aware of the other, and one may argue, more serious health risks?
Perhaps Muslim or otherwise, we were given a body to look after with love and respect. I was taught that we were created in God’s image and that we are the creation of God. How sad that so many religious people then go on to desecrate this great gift of our body by regularly and systematically abusing it with toxins from cigarette smoking.
If you are a smoker and any of this resonates with your beliefs, for God’s love, quit. There are many good ways to help you quit smoking wherever you are. You may find that to stop smoking is the greatest show of gratitude you can give to God. And in return, going through the process in a responsible and healing way can bring you spiritually, physically, emotionally and mentally closer to God and closer to a life of true contentment.
Twenty years ago, at the age of 13, Mark picked up his first pack of cigarettes. While he doesn’t remember the first smoke, it probably took some effort, but was well worth the extra points it won him on the playground. That was a long time ago, but twenty years later, Mark still smoked a pack a day, every day, in sickness and in health, come rain or shine.
For a long time Mark enjoyed his daily cigarettes. The first cigarette of the day was a chance to wake up over coffee. At 10:00 am he could take a short break from work to go to the smoking lounge to light up. His co-workers who didn’t smoke worked through their break and Mark savoured the few minutes he got to himself.
About five years ago, Mark made a bet with his best friend Jerry that he could go for one month without smoking a cigarette. The two decided to put all of the money they spent on cigarettes in a jar for a month and use it towards a trip to Spain during the spring. Mark was completely surprised to find that he couldn’t even last two days without ending up back at the shop buying another pack of cigs. Mark’s friend Jerry was just as unsuccessful and the two spent their spring holiday exploring their hometown instead.
After his first struggle, Mark realized that his addiction to cigarettes was more powerful than he thought. He decided that will power wasn’t enough to defeat his addiction so he decided to try a nicotine gum. The gum would keep his craving in check while his body got used to being nicotine free. This technique helped some of the physical symptoms like shaking, cold sweats, and muscle aches that he experienced the first time. Once the physical symptoms passed, Mark still couldn’t find something to keep his hands busy. When he was at the pub, at a dinner party, or even just at work, the constant fidgeting and movement sent him right back to his pack of cigarettes to deal with his stress and frustration.