Permissibility of Eating Quat and Plucking Eyebrows in Islam

Is it permissible to eat Quat and pluck eyebrows in Islam?

A friend of mine – a recent convert to Islam who I was speaking to yesterday, mentioned that he had gone to Yemen and found the people there very friendly, but he found one problem amongst them, a BIG Problem. Most of them chew Quat.

Quat is a leaf which they chew, and so often when you see they have their mouth with their one cheek bent out. The scholars of Islam are unanimous that Quat is a form of intoxicant, but it is widespread amongst them.

So when this brother tried to say to them, “This thing is not permissible in Islam,” they said “But where is it in the Qur’an? Show us where Allah said it is forbidden?” This was their response.

And of course you will not find it anywhere said in the Qur’an, “Quat is Haram.” You won’t find that, BUT you will find where Allah says, “Wa maa Atakumur Rasulu fakhudhuhu wa maa nahakum an-hu fan tanhu,” (Whatever the Messenger has commanded you, take it, and whatever he has forbidden from, you Leave it). And that is sufficient to say this is Haram by the Qur’an.

And this happened in the time of the Prophet ﷺ with his companions. Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud was teaching the community that plucking eyebrows is haram. And women like to pluck eyebrows, right? So the word got to one of the women that Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud was saying that plucking eyebrows is Haram. And she was a Hafidhah of the Qur’an, so she came to Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud and challenged him and said, “Is the prohibition of plucking the eyebrows in the Qur’an?” And he said, “Yes.” She said, “I have read the Qur’an from cover to cover, where it is?” So he quoted the same verse, “Wa maa Atakumur Rasulu fakhudhuhu wa maa nahakum an-hu fan tanhu,” (Whatever the Messenger has commanded you, take it, and whatever he has forbidden from, you Leave it). And that is sufficient to say this is Haram by the Qur’an.

And the Prophet ﷺ cursed those who plucked eyebrows and who had their eyebrows plucked. End of story.

So commitment to Allah and his Messenger (ﷺ) in our Shahadatain means fundamental obedience to their commands.

Belief in whatever they have narrated to us, whatever Allah has narrated in the text of the Qur’an, when he said that “Dhul Qarnain built a wall which blocked the Gog and Magog tribes from overrunning human kind,” and somebody says, “Where is that wall? We now have satellite photographs of the whole earth – Google Earth. We can go anywhere, where is the wall?” What is our response? Our response should be, “It is there.” Where exactly? We don’t know, but Allah said that Dhul Qarnain did it, we believe that it was done. We don’t have to see it to believe it. Yes, we do say seeing is believing, but in certain contexts. That is when you say something and he says something, we say seeing is believing, show it me.

But when Allah says something that is enough. I don’t have to see it to believe it. This is what acceptance of the Shahadatain means, that we don’t have doubts about what Allah (Subhanahu wata’ala) has told us, nor do we have doubt about what Rasulullah ﷺ instructed us.

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