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"Strong drink" is not referred to as a portent of Allah in Surah An-Nahl


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Author Topic: "Strong drink" is not referred to as a portent of Allah in Surah An-Nahl  (Read 184 times)
Heba E. Husseyn
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« on: May 25, 2012, 08:41:50 am »

 BismEm


This topic needs an emphatic clarification. 

Quoting Verse 16:67

"And of the fruits of the date-palm, and grapes, whence ye derive strong drink and (also) good nourishment. Lo! therein is indeed a portent for people who have sense." (16:67) Surah An-Nahl.

Many people, both Muslims and non-Muslims, ignorantly assume the mention of "strong drink" (or alcohol) in Verse 16:67 as a reference to one of the portents or blessings of Allah.  Totally incorrect!  On the basis of this incorrect assumption, these folks also go about claiming that "alcohol is not Haram in the Quran."   That's another gross misinterpretation. Verse 16:67 refers to nothing of the sort.

If you read Surah An-Nahl carefully, you will observe that from Verse 16:66 to 16:69 Allah is comparing the negative and positive sides of the various things He has created for humankind, the negative coming from the positive ones or vice-versa.  All of these verses elucidate very articulately how something with very positive characteristics can ensue from something unattractive or the other way round (as in Verse 16:67 concerning dates/grapes producing "strong drink").  To explain this point better, let me first quote Verses 16:66-69 of Surah An-Nahl as follows:

"And lo! in the cattle there is a lesson for you. We give you to drink of that which is in their bellies, from betwixt the refuse and the blood, pure milk palatable to the drinkers. (16:66)

And of the fruits of the date-palm, and grapes, whence ye derive strong drink and (also) good nourishment. Lo! therein is indeed a portent for people who have sense. (16:67)

And thy Lord inspired the bee, saying: Choose thou habitations in the hills and in the trees and in that which they thatch;   (16:68)

Then eat of all fruits, and follow the ways of thy Lord, made smooth (for thee). There cometh forth from their bellies a drink divers of hues, wherein is healing for mankind. Lo! herein is indeed a portent for people who reflect."   (16:69)


Verse 16:66 mentions of pure milk which is something very positive being tasty and nutritious for humans, and milk comes through the bellies of cattle from in between its blood and internal refuse which might sound squeamish yet it's wholesome and pleasant.   In Verse 16:67, dates and grapes are the wonders of Allah created for mankind that taste sweet and delicious and are full of nutrition.  But after it rots (or is made to rot through the human-invented process of fermentation) it turns into bitter alcohol which does no good to the human body.  It's left to the choice of humans to either nourish themselves with the fresh and pure healthy fruits as provided by Allah or to allow these fresh fruits to rot and drink them as harmful intoxicants.  Then again, in Verses 16:68-69 Allah mentions how the honeybees construct their structures or the natural beehives.  The internal structure of these natural beehives called honeycomb comprise of densely packed matrix cells made of beeswax to store honey and eggs.  This is how we procure natural fresh honey well-known for its various nutritional properties.  Bees are dreaded by humans as they sting badly, yet natural honey is derived from the bellies of these bees.  That might not sound too attractive, but the fact is that pure and natural honey itself is loved by humans.

Thus, I'm sure anyone can perceive the comparisons along with their contrasts:


Positive                              Negative
                                       
Fresh milk                           From bellies of cattle

Dates/grapes                       Also producing alcohol

Bees                                    Giving honey


Therefore, far from thinking that Verse 16:67 allows alcohol, it's the opposite.  Verse 16:67 is a clear hint on alcohol being a negative invention of man by misusing the blessings of Allah.   
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« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2012, 09:04:20 am »

That's one great emphatic clarification!   Crystal clear.  It was really necessary.  Verse 16:67 has been misinterpreted no less than half a dozen times in my presence by Free Mind supporters at our Muslim community center we often visit and from where some of my friends come for our monthly discussions to our house.  This is a dynamic article with the facts put on the table brilliantly.  I must print it and start a discussion to refute that common misinterpretation on the basis of the contents here.  Many thanks sister Heba.
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« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2012, 09:08:02 am »

Most educative !!  Subhan'Allah.   These factual contents are worth keeping in mind.    JazekAllah khair, my sis.

.... from where some of my friends come for our monthly discussions to our house. 

Brother pt .. your discussions used to be once a weak ....   Undecided
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« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2012, 09:13:01 am »

Couldn't manage it once a weak, sister.  Too short of time .. particularly since my eldest uncle passed away and my father not keeping very good health, me, my brothers, brothers-in-law and cousin are having to put in extra time into our family business.  Going in the morning around 10 and returning around 7 or 8 evening - almost round the clock at work. 
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2012, 09:16:19 am »

Oh!  so sorry brother.  I recall you telling us about your uncle. May Allah Almighty grant him peace, and may Allah also grant good health to your father.  ameen.   

Really long working hours.  But if the business is going well, then you're getting the fruits of your hard work.
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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2012, 09:17:37 am »

Thank you very much sister Ruhi.   

Yes, by the Grace and infinite Mercy of Allah, the business is going fantastically well.  Alhumdulilah again and again.
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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2012, 09:22:56 am »

That's so nice of you sister Heba.  Actually I requested her a couple of days ago if she could pen a clarification for Verse 16:67 in her own good time as I've been a bit busy lately.   I knew it was a difficult topic to write on.  But she did it so fast and so perfectly.    May Allah bless you sis.   This will be tremendously useful for all truth-seekers.

Dear Br. PT, may Allah Almighty bless your beloved family and peace to the departed soul of your dear uncle.   Glad to know the family business is going so well.  And I pray your weekly discussions continue.  InshAllah.
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« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2012, 09:24:38 am »

Yes, sister Heba wrote it wonderfully.  I'll surely make good use of it, Insh'Allah.

And thank you sister Zeynab for your prayers and good wishes.
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« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2012, 09:27:24 am »

That's so nice of you sister Heba.  Actually I requested her a couple of days ago if she could pen a clarification for Verse 16:67 in her own good time as I've been a bit busy lately.   I knew it was a difficult topic to write on.  But she did it so fast and so perfectly.    May Allah bless you sis.   This will be tremendously useful for all truth-seekers.

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« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2012, 10:04:20 am »

Thanks for all your appreciation my dear folks!  Smiley  That's my job out here .. to write and spread the Truth.  Cheesy
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