Alcohol fatwa sparks controversy

The fatwa was passed by a 78-year old scholar, Sheikh Yusuf Al Qardawi. It was reported by Gulf Times in April 2008. (Halaal Talk)

Alcohol fatwa sparks controversy

A prominent Egyptian cleric has created controversy by issuing a fatwa that says tiny amounts of alcohol are permissible in Islam.

Yusuf al-Qaradawi’s fatwa says a level of 0.5% is allowed, whereas most Muslims would say alcohol of any quantity is banned.

Sheikh Qaradawi was recently refused entry to Britain as the UK government said his views could spark violence.
He issued his fatwa in response to a question about high energy drinks.


Sheikh Qaradawi is talking about tiny quantities of alcohol – equivalent to about one-eighth of a unit of alcohol.

He ruled there was no religious ban on consuming drinks with a minute amount of alcohol in them if it was formed naturally through the process of fermentation.

He quoted the rule derived from the sayings of the Prophet that if drinking a lot of alcohol makes you intoxicated then drinking a little is also forbidden.

Sheikh Qaradawi argued that any person who consumed a large amount of high energy drink would not become intoxicated, therefore they were permissible, even though they contained tiny amounts of alcohol.

But this logic has not gone down well.

The editor of a newspaper in Qatar, where Sheikh Qaradawi lives, complained that the sheikh had just stirred up a controversy that everyone could have done without.

The editor said the fatwa from a cleric of the status of Sheikh Qaradawi would inevitably be misunderstood and distorted to suggest he was giving permission to Muslims to drink alcohol.

Sheikh Qaradawi, who is a well-known TV figure, views himself as a moderate voice of Islam.

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  1. In Islam – as a religion and way of life of human kind, seeking information (education) is a compursory to both Muslim men or women. The importance of that is for easy understanding of the religion and the life as a whole.

    The fataawah of the big Sheikh can be misunderstood to many of us who our education is very shallow, secretarian and the so called morden.

    There is whole lot of perfumes we mostly use in our daily life which are full of alcohol, we dont dispute and its just life. Come the man who got understanding of the Deen and the life of human being @ hand is explaining in plain terms of our lives at crossroads.

    For me even if not i support of the fataawa but the reality is that various products we consume evry day in one way or the other got some percentages of alcohol in them and we do with it.

    For juice lovers and a number of chocolates there is whole lot of the alcohol ingridients, let alone soft drink stoney which containes ginger beer in it, and many Muslims feel good and some can not do without.

    “Seeking knowledge even if it is in China” the Hadith is not true but permissible to be used and its often used by many Sheikh, Maulanas and the reknowned Ulema in lectures and advices. For the Fataawa of Sheikh Yusuf Alqardawi, we just need to hear and think and the see and research agree or not agree with him by the end of the day he has played the part of informing the people. Once again Islam is the religion of pratice and its full of practical issues, things we do, see, and drees, eat and use every day – think again before critising the Ulema unless your understanding of Islam and your education is of paramount and instead of critising you can just add on the idaes of work of that person.

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  3. Alcohol – the intoxicant that is CONSUMED is haraam. Full stop. The Cetyl. Alcohol – is an end-product of the petroleum industry, or produced from vegetable oils such as palm oil and coconut oil – Which is why it can be used medicinally, or as perfume or cream. It is in no way intoxicating you, nor does it contain fermented substances etc. Sheikh Yusuf is absolutely incorrect that 0.5% alcohol is fine.

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