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CHAPTER ON THE DESCRIPTION OF THE FOOD OF SAYYIDINA RASULULLAH SALLA LAHU ALAYHI WA’ALE HI WASALLAM

Hazrat Sheikh-ul Hadeeth Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya Kandhelwi (R.A.) explains; 

There are more than thirty ahaadith mentioned in this chapter. In some copies of this book an additional subject (essay) is written and that is on the different types of food that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ ale Hi Wasallam ate.   


(143) Hadith Number 1.  

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ ale Hi Wasallam once said: 'What a nice food, vinegar is!'.   

Commentary  

The reason being there is not much trouble in it. Bread can easily be eaten with it. It is always easily available. It also keeps away formalities. Besides one lives in this world for a little while. Vinegar has many benefits in it. It is an antidote for poison. It stops phlegm and gall. It helps digest food, kills the worms of the stomach and creates a good appetite. Due to its cold effect, it may not be good for some people. But it surely is a good food which is obtained easily. In whatever way it is praised, its full benefits cannot be emphasised. It is stated in a hadith that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam ate it and said: 'What a wonderful food it is'. In another hadith it is stated that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam made du'aa for barakah – blessing in it and said: "It was the food of the previous Ambiyaa also'. In one hadith it is stated, 'The house that has vinegar in it, will not be in need' i.e. That house will not be in need of food. These narrations have been mentioned in the Jam 'ule Wasaa-il from Ibn Maajah .


(144) Hadith Number 2.

Nu'maan bin Bashir Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Are you not in the luxuries of eating and drinking. Whereas I have seen Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam not having ordinary types of dates to full his stomach".   


Commentary

The Sahaabi's (Ra) intention is to persuade one to follow the simple life of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and that one lives in this world for only a short period. When in the hadith it is denied that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam did not have ordinary dates to fill his stomach then what about bread and other foods?



(145) Hadith Number 3.

Jaabir bin 'Abdullah Radiyallabu 'Anhu relates that Rasullullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: "What a wonderful food vinegar is?".   

Commentary

It is possible that when Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said this, both Sayyidina'Aayishah Radiyallahu 'Anha and Sayyidina Jaabir Radiyallahu'Anhu were present. It is more correct that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said this on different occasions.


(146) Hadith Number 4.

Zahdam Al-Jarmi (Ra) says that we were present in the assembly of Abu Musa Ash'ari Radiyallahu 'Anhu. Fowl meat was served for food. A person from among those present, moved back. Abu Musa Radiyalahu 'Anhu asked him the reason (for doing so). He replied 'I had seen the fowl eat something (dirty) so I swore an oath that I will not eat it'. Abu Musa Radiyallahu 'Anhu said: 'In that case, I had seen Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam eat the meat of a fowl' (come and partake of it without fear. If it was not permissible or disliked, how did Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam eat it).   


Commentary

The object is that something which is permissible in shari'ah – Islamic law, must not be prohibited. Break the oath and give kaffaarah. Eating of the fowl is permissible according to all the Imaams. The 'ulama have only stated that it is makruh - undesirable to eat the Jalalah type of fowl. (Because it eats dirt). The effect of the fowl is hot and moist (according to the physicians). It digests quickly, creates good humour (body fluids) in the body. It strengthens the brain and the main parts of the body, clears the voice, and gives the body a good complexion. It strengthens the senses too.


(147) Hadith Number 5.

Safeena Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I ate the meat of Hubaa-raa with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam".   


Commentary

Hubaa-raa is a type of a bird. The 'ulama differ on its meaning. Some say it is Ta'dha-ri. Some say it is Batera (quail), others say it is Sarkhaab. Some translations say it is Chaka Chakoi. It is written in the 'Muheet Aa'zam' that Hubaa-raa is called Ho-barah, Shawaat and Sha-waal in Persian. In Turkish it is called Tau'adh-ri, and in Hindi Charz. It is a wild bird and has a greyish colour, a large neck and long legs, the beak is also slightly large, and it flies at a speed. It is also known as Jarj. The Greeks call it Ghalofas. In size it is between a Heron and a water fowl.
 The author of 'Lughatus Sa-raah' has also translated Hubaa-raa as Shawaat. In Mazaahire Haq it is translated as Ta'dhari. Other authors have also translated it as Ta'dhari. For this reason Ta'dhari is more correct. The author of 'Ghayaath' has written both Ta'dhari and Charz. -The author of 'Babrul Jawaahir' has also translated it as Ta'dhari and Charz. He writes that it is also called Sarkhaab. However the author of 'Muheet' has written that Sarkhaab, which is also called ‘Chakwa’ is another type of bird. The author of 'Nafaa'is' say the 'Arabic of Chakwa and Sarkhaab is Nahaam. Therefore it is more correct that Sarkhaab is another bird.
Safeena was a laqab (title) of the freed slave of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. He was known as Safeena because in travels he carried a lot of goods on his back.


(148) Hadith Number 6.

Zahdam Al-Jarmi RA. says: "We were present in the company of Abu Musa Ash'ari. Food was presented to him in which there was fowl meat also. Among those present was a person from the tribe of Banu Taymillah who was reddish in colour and seemed a freed slave. He moved back and sat on one side. Abu Musa asked him to come near (and partake of the food) and related to him that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam also ate the meat of a fowl. He excused himself saying: 'I had seen it eating such a thing which makes me dislike eating it. For this reason I had sworn an oath that I shall not eat it"'.   


Commentary

This is the same hadith that has been mentioned previously. Because of the difference in the chain of narrators, there is also a difference in the describing of the narration. Both ahaadith are described in brief in the Shamaa-il. This incident is mentioned in detail in the Bukhaari, where it is stated that in the end Sayyidina Abu Musa Ash'ari Radiyallahu 'Anhu told him to partake of the fowl and give a kaffaarah - atonement for the oath. What does it mean, or what is derived by swearing an oath not to eat a thing which is halaal - permissable? 


 (149) Hadith Number 7.

Abu Usayd Radiyallahu 'Anhu says. "Rasululah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'Use olive oil in eating and for rubbing (on the body), for it is from a mubaarak (blessed) tree"'.  


Commentary

The blessedness of this tree has been mentioned in the Qur-aan in the aayah ". . . from a blessed tree, an olive neither of the East nor of the West, . . . " -Surah An Nur, 35.
The 'ulama have mentioned different reasons for its blessedness. Some say it is mostly grown in Syria and the earth of Syria is blessed because seventy Prophets (As) were sent to it. Some say it is blessed because of its many benefits. Abu Nu'aym says: 'It has a cure for seventy diseases of which one is leprosy'. Sayyidina Ibn 'Abbaas Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: 'Every part of the olive is beneficial. The oil is used for burning and cooking. It is also used for tanning. Its wood is used for firewood. The ash of the olive is -especially good for washing silk'. It is said that the olive tree has a long life. It bears fruit after forty years and has a life span of a thousand years. It's numerous benefits are mentioned in the books of tibb.


(150) Hadith Number 8.

It is related from Sayyidina 'Umar Radiyallahu 'Anhu that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu Aayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: "Use olive oil in cooking and rubbing (on the body) because it is from a blessed tree". 
  


Commentary

The reason for mentioning this hadith in the practices of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu' Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam is, that if they encouraged the use of olives, then they must have also used it. 


(151) Hadith Number 9.   

Anas bin Maalik Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved gourd (dubbaa-dodhi-kadu). Once food was presented to Rasulullah Salla lahu'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam or attended an invitation. (The narrator doubts on which occasion this took place) where gourd was served. I knew Rasulullah Sallallahu'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved it. I searched for pieces from the food and presented it to them".   


Commentary

We gather from this that if there are many things in a plate, then it is permissible to take a thing which one likes from the other side of the plate, provided the next person does not feel offended. The reason for searching for pieces of gourd is because it was the custom to have more gravy in the food. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale hi Wasallam also advised us to have more gravy in the food so that the neighbours may also benefit.


(152) Hadith Number 10.

Jaabir bin Taariq Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I attended the assembly of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. I observed, they were busy cutting a gourd into pieces. I inquired: 'What shall be made of this'. They replied: 'It will add to our food"'.   

Commentary

The 'ulama have mentioned many benefits of gourd (dubba- dodhi- kadu - pumpkin). Its benefits are also mentioned in the books of tibb. It strengthens the brain and senses. 
 

(153) Hadith Number 11.

Hasrat Anas bin. Maaik Radiyalahu 'Anhu says: "A tailor once invited Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. I also attended the invitation with Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. He served Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam bread made of barley, and gravy with meat and gourd (dubba-dodhi) in it. I saw Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam look for pieces of gourd from all sides of the plate. From that time I also began loving gourd".

Commentary

Sayyidina Anas Radiyalahu 'Anhu may have also been invited or may have accompanied Sayyidina Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. There is no harm if one accompanies an invited guest to an invitation provided the host does not feel offended.
Sayyidina Anas Radiyalahu 'Anhu saying, that from then on he began loving gourd, shows the love the Sahaabah Radiyalahu 'Anhum had for Sayyidina Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. True love demands that every deed of the beloved is loved and every word has a place in the heart. The degree of love will determine the ardour of the effects of the beloved.
What glory Allah has! Today the ones who claim to love Sayyidina Rasululluh Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam do not like to make their appearance like him or even imitate him.

Observe the disparity of the path that from where to where it is   

(154) Hadith Number 12.

Sayyidina 'Ayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved halva and honey". 
  

Commentary

‘Halva’ here apparently means anything sweet. Some are of the opinion that it is a special type of halva that is made of sweetmeats and ghee etc. The first person to present halva to Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam was Sayyidina 'Uthman Radiyallahu. 'Anhu. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam liked it. This halva was made of flour, ghee and honey. Sugar was not commonly used in those times. Sweetening agents were derived from honey or dates. 
 

(155) Hadith Number 13.

Umm Salamah Radiyallahu 'Anha says "I presented a roasted side portion of meat to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. They ate it and (threafter) performed salaah, without perfoming wudu". 
  

Commentary

It is found in some ahaadith that things cooked on fire nullifies the wudu. This was also the madh-hab of the 'ulama mutaqaddimeen. The madh-hab of the ulama mutaqaddimeen. The Madh-hab of the Khulafaa Raashideen, the four Imaams and the majority of the Ulama is that those ahaadith wherein the necessity of Wudu - ablution is mentioned has been abrogated. This hadith of Sayyidina Umm Salamah Radiyallahu 'Anha also supports the madh-hab  - school of thought of the majority that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam did not perform wudhu again (after eating the cooked meat) before Salaah.


(156) Hadith Number 14.

Abdullah bin Haarith Radiyallahu'Anhu says.. "We ate roasted meat with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam in the masjid". 
  

Commentary

From this we find that it is permissible to eat and drink in the masjid (mosque), on condition that the masjid does not become untidy, otherwise it is makruh to do so. It is possible that this was at the time of i'tikaaf (in Ramadaan). It was the practice of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam to observe i'tikaaf every year, and at that time it is obvious that one eats in the masjid.

(157) Hadith Number 15.

Mughirah bin Shu'bah Radiyallahu'Anhu says: "One night I became a guest with Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. At the time of meals a roasted side portion of meat was served. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam cut pieces from it and gave me to eat. During this period Hasrat Bilaal (Ra) came and called out the adhaan (call to prayer). Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'May his both hands be in dust. What made him call out the adhaan now'. Rasululah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam put down the knife and went for Salaah".
Mughirah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says "(Another thing that happened) that my moustache had grown long. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'Come let me put a miswaak on it and trim it', or said, 'Put a miswaak on it and trim it'. (One of the narrators are in doubt as to which of the two Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam had said).   

Commentary

There are a few important matters to be discussed here. The first is that Sayyidina Mughirah Radiyallahu 'Anhu became a guest of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. The 'ulama give two meanings to this. This is also strengthened by other narrations. One is that the word 'together' (with) is extra. The object is that I became a guest of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. As a host he had a side portion roasted and cut pieces from the meat and gave me to eat. The narration in Tirmidhi is more appropriate to this subject. The narration in Abu Daawud on this is clear and the words mentioned are this: 'I became a guest of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam'. The second meaning is that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and I were the guests of a third person. The word 'together’, in the narration supports this. In this case, for Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam to cut the meat and feed the guest was to create love and brotherhood. Some have written a third meaning: ‘I invited Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam to be my guest'. This is not true. According to this humble servant it is more correct that: 'I was the guest of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and other guests were invited'. As was the general custom that respected people were invited with their servants and guests. In this manner there will be no contradiction between the narrations of Abu Daawud and Tirmidhi. In reality he was the guest of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and because of an invitation to Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and their guests, he and Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam were both the guests of another person.
The second question in the narrations of Abu Daawud and Bayhaqi is that it has been prohibited to cut with a knife. The 'ulama of hadith have summed up both hadith in many ways. The easiest is that it has been prohibited to use a knife for eating purposes. If the meat is not cooked well (tender), there is no harm in first cutting it and then eating it with the hand. As a general rule in law, where a thing is found to be both permitted and prohibited, and there is no sound reason for adopting it, then according to the basis of law the prohibition shall be given preference. This is an independent view of law. Some 'ulama have written, the hadith in which it has been prohibited is mentioned in the following terms (words): 'Do not cut meat with a knife. This is the way of the 'Ajamis (non-believers)'. We gather that the prohibition is in following the ways of the non-believers. There is no prohibition using a knife. We have been prohibited in thousands of ahaadith imitating the non-believers. The third question is the words that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said about Sayyidina Bilaal Radiyallahu'Anhu. The words were an admonition. The meanings of such words are not intended, but are used to reproach someone. These types of words are used in every language when scolding someone. Although some 'ulama have taken the literal meaning of the words because they are the blessed words of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. In reality it was only to reproach, the reason being that when the Messenger of Allah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam is busy attending to a guest, then the adhaan should not be given. It was better to wait till they had finished, as there was still room for performing Salaah  - prayer a little later. The fourth question is about trimming the moustache. The meaning is clear as stated in the explanation of the hadith that the moustache of Sayyidina Mughirah Radiyallahu 'Anhu had grown long. Instead of a comb, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said a miswaak must be put to trim the moustache. Some of the commentators on hadith say that the moustache of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam is meant here, but in the narration of Abu Daawud it is clearly stated that: 'My moustache had become long which Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam then trimmed'. In different ahaadith this is mentioned in different wordings. It has been stated: 'Let the beards grow long'. And it has been stressed very much that the moustache be cut short. For this reason a group of 'ulama say it is Sunnah to shave the moustache. The research of the majority of the 'ulama show that it is Sunnah to cut the moustache short. It should be cut so short that it is nearest to shaving. 


(158) Hadith Number 16.

Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Meat was sent to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam from someone. From it the forequarter was presented to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved this portion (of the meat too). Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam tore the meat with his teeth and ate it". (He did not use a knife to cut it). 
  

Commentary

Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam has encouraged the use of the teeth to eat. It is related in the hadith, that it should be torn and eaten, because it digests properly and it is more suitable to the body.


(159) Hadith Number 17.

Ibn Mas'ud Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved the meat of the forequarter. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam was-given poison in the dhiraa portion of the meat. It is suspected that the Jews poisoned him'. 
  


Commentary

After Khaybar was conquered, a Jewess living there, came to know that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved the dhiraa portion of the meat. She roasted the meat of a goat and mixed a poison in it, and especially put more in the dhiraa part. She invited Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and served the meat. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam took a bite but did not swallow it, or may have swallowed a bit of it then spat it out and said. 'I have been informed by this meat that there is poison in it", Some of the poison had an affect.
 The poisonous effect sometimes became severe, and at the time of the departure of Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, it began to take effect again and was the cause of their martyrdom. In this hadith it is mentioned that the meat itself informed Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam that there was poison in it. In other narrations it is stated that Jibra'eel 'Alayhis Salaam informed Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam of this. There is no contradiction, as both are possible, first the meat must have informed Rasulullah Salla Lahu Alayhi wa’ale hi Wasalllam as a mu'jizah (miracle), thereafter Jibra'eel 'Alayhis Salaam came and affirmed it.  After receiving the information, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam stopped eating it and prohibited the Sahaabah Radiyallahu 'Anhum from eating it too. Later the woman was called and asked if poison was mixed in the meat? She confessed that she had poisoned the meat. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam did not avenge himself and the woman was pardoned at that time. Later Sayyidina Bishr bin Baraa Radiyallahu 'Anhu was martyred due to eating the poisoned meat. We find in a few narrations that the woman was later killed as a punishment, or as an example to others. There are different narrations from which we gather that she was punished. In others that she was not punished. Both are correct, as is gathered from the original incident. According to the shari'ah for such a deed it is waajib to punish the murderer or blood money taken. This is a fiqhi question and the 'ulama hold different opinions, which needs an academic discussion, therefore, it is omitted here. Sayyidina Ibn Mas'ud Radiyallahu 'Anhu" saying that it is suspected that the Jewess poisoned the meat, is according to his thoughts, it seems he did not investigate this incident, otherwise the original incident has been ascertained. The Jewess also confessed her crime as is mentioned in other narrations.

(160) Hadith Number 18.

Hasrat Abu 'Ubayd Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I cooked a pot (food) for Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. Because Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam loved the dhiraa (forequarter of a goat or sheep) a lot, I served that portion. Rasulullah Salla lahu Alayhi wa’ale Hi Wasallam ordered another one, I served the second one. Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then ordered one again. I replied: 'Ya Rasulullah (Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam) the goat has only two dhiraa'. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam then said: 'I swear an oath by the Name of that Being in Whose hands is my life, if you kept quiet, you could have served me every time I requested one"'. 
  

Commentary

This was a mu'jizah (miracle) of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. In Musnad Ahmad, a similar incident is narrated from Sayyidina Abu Raafi' Radiyallahu 'Anhu. This incident apparently happened to both of them. There is nothing surprising because there are many such incidents found in the life of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam, which Qaadi 'Iyaad has mentioned in his book 'Al’ Shifaa'. Sayyidina Abu Ayyub Ansaari Radiyallahu 'Anhu once invited Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and Sayyidina Abu Bakr Saddique Radiyallahu 'Anhu and prepared food that was enough for two people only. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam requested him to invite thirty respected people from among the Ansaar. He invited them and after they had eaten, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'Now invite sixty people'. After they had eaten, others were invited. In short, the food was enough for one hundred and eighty people.
Sayyidina Samurah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: 'Once a bowl of meat was sent to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam from somewhere. People came to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam from the morning till evening, and ate from it'.

Sayyidina Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu had a bag with some dates, which were a bit more than ten in number. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam asked him if he had anything to eat? He replied: 'I have a few dates in this bag'. Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu 'Alayhi Wasallam took out a few dates from the bag with his blessed hands and spread it. Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu 'Alayhi Wasallam recited a du'aa - supplication, then said: 'Invite ten people at a time and feed them'. In this manner it was sufficient for the whole army. Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu 'Alayhi Wasallam returned the dates that were left to Sayyidina Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu and said: 'Keep on eating from it, but do not turn and empty it'. He kept on eating from it. Sayyidina Abu Hurayrah Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: 'I ate from it during the time of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam and the Khilaafah of Hasrat Abu Bakr (Ra), Hasrat Umar (Ra) and  Hasrat Uthmaan (Radiyallahu'Anhum). And at times took and gave sadaqah - charity also, the amount of which must have been many maunds (one maund equals forty Seers- approx. 38 kg). At the 'time of the martyrdom of 'Sayyidina Uthmaan (Ra), some one took it away from me by force, and I lost it.
Sayyidina Anas Radiyallahu 'Anhu says that my mother prepared malidah (a type of cake) at one of the Walimahs (after wedding feast) of Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. She sent it with me in a cup to Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam asked me to put the cup down and invite certain people, and also anyone else whom I might meet. I went to invite those people and also sent all those I met, till the rooms and the living quarters of the As-Haabus Suffah became full. Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'Sit in groups of ten, ten people and help yourselves'. After all had eaten and filled themselves, Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam told me to pick up the cup. Sayyidina Anas Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "I cannot say if the cup was more full in the beginning or in the end."

There were many such incidents. Qaadi 'lyaad says that these incidents occurred in large gatherings. It is very difficult to describe such happenings differently and those that were present at these gatherings would not have kept silent if these happenings were described incorrectly. In the above, wherein Sayyidina Abu 'Ubayd Radiyallahu'Anhu said that a goat only has two dhiraa (side portions), which was the reason for not getting the opportunity to serve other dhiraa.
According to Mulla 'Ali Qaari, miracles, karamahs, abnormal happenings will only take place when there is complete fanaa and because of the answer of Sayyidina Abu 'Ubayd Radiyallahu 'Anhu, the full attention of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam did not remain. 'Allaamah Munaawi says that in reality this is a gift from Allab Ta'aala. If he should have faithfully, without question fulfilled the request of Sayyidina Rasulullah Sallallahu 'Alayhi Wasallam, it would have remained. But he raised a question which was not appropriate to the situation, therefore the gift terminated.

(161) Hadith Number 19.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam liked the dhiraa portion of meat not because of its tastiness, but because meat was only available occasionally, and this portion of the meat cooked quickly. Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam also liked it as it saved time and he could return quickly to his commitments". 
 

Commentary

In the narration, it is stated that Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam liked the dhiraa part of the meat. It is possible there were many reasons for him liking this portion. Among them is also the one related by Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha. Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha denies Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam liked the dhiraa portion and this denial apparently seems to be that it appears the liking of the dhiraa portion because of greed and desire, which is against the dignity of Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam, otherwise there is no denial of his liking only that portion of the meat.

(162) Hadith Number 20.

Abdullah bin, Ja'far Radiyallahu 'Anhu says: "Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said: 'The best meat is that of the back portion' 
  

Commentary

There is no contradiction between this and other narrations in which it is mentioned that he liked the meat of the dhiraa portion. Due to different reasons and the quality, both can be good. For example, strength-wise or it having less fibre, more fat etc. Therefore due to different aspects, both could be preferred and also be excellent.


(163) Hadith Number 21.

Sayyidina 'Aayeshah Radiyallahu 'Anha says that Rasulullah Salla lahu 'Alayhi Wa’ale Hi Wasallam said. "Vinegar is an excellent food". 
  

Commentary

This has been mentioned in a few hadith in this chapter.


(164) Hadith Number 22

Hazrat Umme Haani radiyallahu anha (a cousin of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alaihe wa’ale hi wasallam) says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam came to me (to my house at the time when Makkah was conquered) and asked if there was something to eat. I replied, ‘Nothing besides dry bread and vinegar.’
Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said, ‘Bring it. That house is not without food which has vinegar in it.” 
  

Commentary  

This incident has been related by Sayyidina Ibn Abbas radiyallahu anhu in more detail. Bayhaqi has made takhrij - derivation, narrated a long version of what is briefly mentioned here. “At the time when Makkah was conquered, Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam went to the house of Umme Haani radiyallahu anha and asked, ‘Is there something to eat?’ She replied, ‘O’ Messenger of Allah, there is dry bread, and I feel ashamed to present it to you.’ Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said, ‘Do not worry, bring it.’ She presented it. Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam broke them into pieces, soaked them in water and added salt. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then asked, ‘Have you anything with the bread?’
She replied that there was nothing besides vinegar. Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam requested it and poured some over the soaked bread, ate it and thanked Allah (swt). Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, then said., ‘O’ Umme Haani, the house that has vinegar in it, is never without food.”  Allahu Akbar.
What a simple life Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam led. How wonderful will it be if Allah (swt) in His infinite Mercy and with the shafaa’ah - intercession of His beloved Rasululah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) also grant us such simplicity. The fact is that food and drink in the eyes of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam was given only such importance, that it was only used when it was required. When necessary, Sayyidina Rasulullah Salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, ate what was available. Eating was looked upon as being means to sustain life, and not as we see it, that the filling of the stomach is more important, and religious deeds are regarded as something of a secondary importance. Their aim in life was to propagate Islam and make a fertile ground for it, and as an obligation and human need to fulfil religious needs. It is also proven from the hadith that where one has an informal relationship with someone, there is no harm in asking for something.


(165) Hadith Number 23

Hazrat Abu Musa Ash’ari radiyallahu anhu says that Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said, “The virtues of Sayyidina Ayeshaa (radiyallahu anha) over other women is the same as the virtue of thareed over other foods.” 
  

Commentary

From this hadith we learn the excellence and superiority of Sayyidina Ayeshaa radiyallahu anha over the other women, and thareed over other foods. Thareed is a delicacy in which bread is mixed with gravy. Besides being tasty and nourishing, it digests quickly and easily, and has other benefits too. It is a custom in Arabia to eat this delicacy, and was counted amongst the best foods.
There are many narrations wherein the excellence of Sayyidina Ayeshaa radiyallahu anha are mentioned. The Ulama differ in that, is her excellence over all the women or are some exempted from this? Is her excellence superior to that of Sayyidina Khadijah radiyallahu anha and Sayyidatina Fatimah radiyallahu anha or not? Some are of the opinion that Sayyidina Ayeshaa radiyallahu anha is superior, and some say that Sayyidina Fatimah radiyallahu anha is superior, while some are of the opinion that Sayyidina Khadijah radiyallahu anha is the best of them all.
According to this humble servant, each is superior in a special manner to another. Sayyidina Ayeshaah radiyallahu anha is superior in that she was the most beloved of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam for her jurisprudence, and that a Wahi -  revelation of the Qur’aan was revealed while Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam was resting in her lap. Sayyidina Khadijah radiyallahu anha is superior as she was the first to accept Islam, and the first wife of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, and due to many other virtues she is superior. Sayyidina Fatimah radiyallahu anha is superior as she is the beloved and darling child of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. Sayyidina Fatimah radiyallahu anha is also the leader of the women in Jannah - Paradise.

(166) Hadith Number 24

Hazrat Anas ibn Malik radiyallahu anhu says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said, ‘The virtue and excellence of Aayeshah over all other women is like the excellence of thareed over other foods.” 
  

Commentary

The object of Imaam Tirmidhi in mentioning this narration is to show that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved thareed. We gather from different narrations that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate thareed regularly. 



 
(167) Hadith Number 25

Hazrat Abu Hurairah radiyallahu anha says that he once saw Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam eat a piece of cheese then perform wudhu. Then he saw him at another time eat a shoulder of a goat, and perform salaah without performing wudhu. 
  


Commentary

In the early stages of Islam, wudhu - ablution would become nullified after eating things cooked on fire. Later this law was abrogated. It is possible that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam performed wudhu after eating cheese in the days when wudhu became nullified after eating things that were cooked on fire, or he may have performed wudhu due to some other reason. For example, he may have performed wudhu again whilst still being in the state of wudhu, or due to some reason the wudhu may have become invalid. From the explanation given by Sayyidina Abu Hurairah radiyallahu anhu we gather that in the early stages of Islam, Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam performed wudhu after eating things cooked on fire. Later this law was abrogated, that is why he did not perform wudhu after eating the mutton. 
   


(168) Hadith Number 26

Hazrat Anas ibn Malik radiyallahu anhu reports, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam celebrated the waleemah of Safiyyah radiyallahu anha with dates and saweeq (sattu).” 
  


Commentary

Saweeq (sattu) is a drink made of parched barley. Sayyidina Safiyyah bint Hu-yay ibn Akhtab radiyallahu anha was from a Jewish family and from among the offspring of Harun’ Alayhis Salaam. In the 7th year Hijri, after the Battle of Khaybar, she was taken as a slave.
Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam freed, and married her. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam once said to her, “Your grandfather (Harun ‘Alayhis Salaam) is a Nabi - Prophet. Your Uncle (Musa ‘Alayhis Salaam) is a Nabi, and your husband is a Nabi.”
The waleemah was performed whilst on a journey. What was served in the waleemah? Different sayings are narrated in the ahaadith. In some, it is narrated that Hayse, which is a type of sweet dish, was served. In some, cheese is mentioned. It is apparent since they were on a journey, therefore whatever was available at breakfast time by Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam and their close associates, was included in the waleemah. (Waleemah is a feast normally held on the day after the wedding.)


(169) Hadith Number 27

Hazrat Salma radiyallahu anha says that Imaam Hasan, Hazrat Abdullah ibn Abbas and Hazrat Abdullah ibn Ja’far Sadiq radiyallahu anhum went to her and said, “Cook for us the food that Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam liked and ate with pleasure.”
She replied, “O’ my children, you will not like it now.” (It was only liked in times of hardships.)
They replied, “Yes, we will surely like it.” She got up and took a bit of barley, (crushed it) and put it in a pot, and poured a little olive oil over it, then crushed some chillies and spices and added it to the pot and served it, saying, “This is what Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved (and ate with pleasure).” 
      


(170) Hadith Number 28

Hazrat Jaabir ibn Abdullah radiyallahu anhu says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam came to our house. We slaughtered a goat in his honour. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said (to make the host feel happy), ‘It is as if they knew we like meat.” (Imaam Tirmidhi says, “This hadith has a long incident, of which a portion is mentioned briefly here.”) 
  


Commentary

It is said, this is that part of the incident which is mentioned in the books of hadith on the subject of Ghazwah Khandaq - Battle of Khandaq. Wherein a miracle of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam is also mentioned. That is: Sayyidina Jaabir radiyallahu anhu says, “I saw the sign of hunger on Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. I went home and asked if there was some food. There was lamb, and some barley in a bag. I slaughtered the lamb and my wife ground the barley into flour. The meat was put in a pot to cook and I went to Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam and quietly said to him, ‘There is some food ready.’
I invited Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam and a few companions. Upon hearing this Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam announced to all those present at the trench, who numbered to about a thousand people, that there was an invitation at the house of Jaabir, and all were invited. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam told me not to remove the pot from the fire and not to prepare the bread till he came. When Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam came, he made damm (recite then blow) on the pot, as a result there was so much barakah - blessing that the food kept on coming out of the pot, and bread was being made from the dough. I swear by Allah that the thousand people ate and went away but the food kept coming out of the pot, and bread kept on being made from the dough.”


(171) Hadith Number  29

Hazrat Jaabir radiyallahu anhu says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam went to the house of a woman from among the Ansaar. I also accompanied him. The hostess slaughtered a goat for Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate some meat from it. She then served a tray of fresh dates. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate some from it. He then performed wudhu for Zuhr and performed the Zuhr salaah. After returning from the salaah she served from the remaining meat. Rasoolullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate from it. He did not perform wudhu for the Asr salaah (and performed salaah with the previous wudhu). 
  


Commentary

It can be argued from this hadith that it is not necessary to perform wudhu after eating something that has been cooked on a fire. Proof may also be obtained from this hadith that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate twice in a day. For this reason it could be said that where it has been narrated that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate only once a day, it may have been said according to the knowledge of the narrator. It may also be said that in those narrations, the filling of the stomach twice has been denied, but eating twice has not been denied. A little may have been eaten the second time. 


 
(172) Hadith Number 30

Hazrat Umme-Mundhir radiyallahu anha says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam visited me. Hazrat Ali radiyallahu anhu was with him. We had some bunches of dates hanging. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam began eating from them. Hazrat Ali radiyallahu anhu also began eating with him. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam stopped him saying, ‘You have just recovered from your illness and should not eat this.’ Sayyidina Ali radiyallahu anhu stopped and Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam continued eating.” Hazrat Umme-Mundhir radiyallahu anha says, “I then cooked some barley and beetroot. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said to Hazrat Ali radiyallahu anhu, ‘Eat from this, it is suitable for you.” 
  

Commentary

From this hadith we derive that to give consideration to the asbaab - causes is not against tawakkul (complete faith and reliance in Allah). This has been discussed in detail in (Imam Ghazali’s) Ihyaa-ul-Uloom. Those who wish may refer to it there.


(173) Hadith Number 31

Ummul Mu’mineen Hazrat Aayeshah radiyallahu anha says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam used to come to me and ask if there was any food available. When I would say, ‘No,’ he would say, ‘I have intended to fast.’
Once when Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam came and enquired, I replied, ‘We have received a present.’ Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam asked, ‘What is it?’ I replied, ‘Hayse (Malidah) (Maildah is a type of cake made of dates, ghee, cheese or flour).’ Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said, ‘I had made an intention of fasting already.’ Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam then ate some from it. 
 


Commentary

Two mas-alahs are derived from this hadith. One is that the intention of a nafl fast could be made before half of the day has passed, on condition that nothing that nullifies the fast had been committed. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam made the niyyah - intention (of fasting) after enquiring from Ummul Mu’mineen Sayyidina Ayeshah radiyallahu anha. This is the Madh-hab of the Hanafis and Shafi’is. The Madh-hab of Imam Malik rahmatullahi alaihe is that intention of a nafl fast is necessary from night. In this mas-alah we gain support from the above hadith. But because it is against the Madh-hab of a reputed Imam, it is better if the intention of nafl fast is made from the night. If due to circumstances this could not be done, there is no harm if the intention is made a little before Zuhr on that day.
The second mas-alah is, if one has observed a nafl fast, one has the option of breaking it. This is the Madh-hab of Imam Shaafi’ee. According to the Hanafis because of the aayah - verse, ‘Do not nullify your deeds.’ (47:32), it is not permissible to break a fast or salaah. But since we find from this hadith the breaking of the fast, we may act on both in the following manner. That when due to an important factor or necessity we may regard it as a concession from this hadith, normally it is not jaa-iz (permissible) to break the fast without a reason. It is also clear from the hadith that this was the reason of Sayyidina Rasoolullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam breaking the fast. Some Ulama have explained that this sentence, “I made an intention of fasting,” was not a firm intention but just a thought that I shall fast today. According to this humble servant the first explanation is correct.
Mas-alah: According to the Hanafis, because of some necessity, if a nafl - voluntary fast is broken, then it will be waajib - compulsory to observe a qadaa -  recompensation. It has been narrated in a hadith from Sayyidina Ayeshah radiyallahu anha wherein Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam told her to observe a qadaa on another day.


(174) Hadith Number 32

Hasrat Yusuf ibn Abdullah ibn Salaam radiyallahu anhu says, “I once observed Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam take a piece of bread and put a date on it and said this is the food for this (bread), then ate it.” 
  


Commentary

Dates were not regarded as an actual food to eat with bread, Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam suggested that dates could be used in this way as food. The few days of one’s life could also be covered in this manner. One should spend one’s life in things that will benefit in the hereafter and forever. It should be pondered upon, and all of one’s time should not be wasted in maintaining and nourishing the stomach. It is very foolish to do so, because the few days we are granted in this world will, in any way pass. Death brings an end to all difficulties. We should ponder on those things that even death cannot bring an end to.


(175) Hadith Number 33

Hazrat Anas radiyallahu anhu says, “Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam liked to eat the left overs of a pot and cup (plate).” 
 

Commentary

This is the sign of the complete humbleness of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. He first fed others, then liked for himself what was left over. There are many instances in the Ahaadith that inform us of this. Some Ulama state that the reason for this is because food at the bottom is less fatty and also digests quickly.  

Studying Ash-Shaam-il  

The food that was eaten with bread by Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) 


This chapter discusses the type of food that was eaten by Sayydina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam, with bread.  


Food for the believers 

Bread is a food that should be treated with great adab - etiquette, as explained in many haadith. 
When presenting food, the Sunnah of Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam is to always present bread till last. Also bread is the food that should also be eaten first. This way we do not let bread wait for other foods to be brought and the meal to begin and also bread is the first food to be eaten. We should not dis-respect bread. The beautiful Sunnah is also not to cut bread with a knife but to break it. 

Vinegar is eaten with bread and is described as the best combination, and vinegar is good for the poor. Upon visiting the poor, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam praised vinegar in order to avoid embarrassing the host. Also there are many diseases that are caused by excessive acid in the stomach, vinegar can relieve this. Modern study shows that one spoon of vinegar every day can prevent cancer. It is a blessed practice to eat vinegar every evening. 

Dates were eaten by Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. The companions (Ra) would say after Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam passed away, that Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam never had enough dry dates at any time. 

Meat is amongst the food eaten by Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved lamb meat. Especially the foreshank part, which is the top of the front leg of the sheep. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would also eat the arm of the lamb, neck of the lamb and part of the chest of lamb.

Narrations confirm that Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) use to eat dried meat. It is known that the poor people eat dried meat. Once a lady came to Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) and she was shaking in awe of the Prophet (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam). On seeing this, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam stated to her that she should not worry as ‘I am born from a woman in Quraish who used to eat dried meat’.
  
Also traditions confirm that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate chicken. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate ‘quail’. Quail is one of the fastest birds and are known to travel from Syria to Iraq in search of their ‘rizq’. In fact, they search everywhere for food. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam said that ‘Quails die of hunger because of the sins of mankind’.Other meat eaten by Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam includes camel meat, rabbit meat and fish. 

Sweet is amongst the Sunnah of Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam). The Prophet (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) loved to eat ‘halwa’ and ‘honey’. Both ‘halwa’ and ‘honey’ are good for energy and digestion. The scholars confirm they are beneficial to the body, along with meat. 

Olive Oil, has numerous benefits and traditions confirm that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate olive oil and also applied on their blessed hair. This oil has come from a blessed tree. The Olive tree has great barakha – blessings, and it is the first tree that grew after the flood of Sayyidina Nuh (As) – Prophet Noah. 

Pumpkin, was amongst the food that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved to eat. Pumpkins have great benefit to the stomach and the abdomen. They also strengthen the mind and increase the IQ.   


To love as the Prophet (saw) loves! 

Narrations confirm how the companions loved what Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam loved. Hasrat Anas ibn Malik (Ra) loved Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam and therefore loved pumpkin, as this food was dear to the blessed Prophet salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. In the authentic hadith, Hasrat Anas ibn Malik (ra) witnessed Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) eating pumpkin fondly and therefore from that point on, it is narrated that no meal ever passed in the life of Hasrat Anas ibn Malik (ra) in which he did not include pumpkin. This love is rewarding as it is for the sake of Allah (swt) and Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) and not based on personal taste. Personal love is due to desires, the true and rewarding love is ‘Mohabbat ul’ Shariah’. 

Mohabbat ul’ Shariah, is to love only for the sake of Allah (swt) and the Prophet (saw), and this love is true because it is confined within limits of the Shariah. Intrinsic love, which is our own personal desires has no limits and therefore can lead to selfishness and errors. If anything is more dearer to us than Allah (swt) and the Messenger (saw) this will lead to mis- guidance. Love needs to be guided and controlled by limits of Shariah. For example to love and honour our parents has been instructed by the Qur’an and Sunnah, and our conduct towards them should not change even if they are bad to us.  


The Adab of hosting 

The etiquettes in Islam show how we should invite others to our house. There is barakha – blessing in this and we should not think that it will be a burden on us. The narrations confirm that at the time of the ‘Battle of Khandaq’ when the trench was being dug, Hasrat Jabir bin Abdullah (ra) invited Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) to bring some of his closest companions (ra) and eat at Hasrat Jaabir bin Abdullah’s (ra) house. Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) brought along all the companions (ra) who were present. Everyone ate from a small pot and it was sufficient.
Sayyidina Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) on one occasion received an invite from a companion (ra), but there was another sahabi – companion (ra) who was to accompany Rasulullah (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam). So the blessed Prophet (salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam) first asked the host whether he could bring someone else along. This etiquette to ask the host is not about the food but about their privacy. We should not embarrass the host.

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam while being the host would always choose to cut the meat and serve the guests. This is also adab of being the host. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would also encourage delaying Isha salaat if guests were eating. This is why in the narration, Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam were angry with Hasrat Bilal (ra) for giving the adhaan – call to prayer. Amongst the etiquettes of being a host is that you slaughter an animal in honour of your guests.   

The Sunnah of Eating 

There are many narrations about the most noble eating habit of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. Also narrations confirm other noble habits of our blessed Prophet salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam.
For example in this chapter, it is mentioned how Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam offered to cut the moustache of a sahabi (ra) to make sure it is straight.
 

Narrations confirm that Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate in the Masjid. 

Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would eat meat with their blessed teeth in a certain way. This would be to have the mouth around with the teeth.  

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam only made it permissible to use the right hand to eat. The left hand can only be used in support of the right hand. Using the left alone is not permissible. 

Sayyidina Ayesha (Ra) narrates that Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate meat occasionally and liked foreshank. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam liked foreshank as it is furthest from filth. The blessed Prophet (saw) did not like eating places around the stomach and thigh areas. 

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam ate dates with bread. 

Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam used to enjoy eating a bread called ‘thareed’. As this bread is easy to chew and can be eaten with one hand. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam explained the virtue of Sayyidina Ayesha (ra) in terms of thareed being superior to other foods. The four most blessed women may Allah (swt) reward them and honour them are; Sayyidina Maryam (As), Sayyidina Khadija (As), Sayyidina Fatima (As) who has been mentioned as the ‘Master of the women of Paradiseand Sayyidina Asiya (As). 

Narrations confirm that Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam visited a sahaabi (ra) and was offered bread and vinegar. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam stated that any house with vinegar is not poor. The legislation from this hadith is that there should never be any household without vinegar. Vinegar brings rizq. 

The blessed Sunnah of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam is not to leave anything in the pot. This is barakha – blessings in this. The sunnah is to eat and never be ungrateful. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam would clean plate with their blessed finger and eat.   


The Miracles and Virtues of the Prophet (saw) 

This chapter also mentions miracles from the life of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam. The miracle at the house of Hasrat Jaabir bin Abdullah (ra) is mentioned where all the companions (Ra) who were present at the digging of the trench (Khandaq), ate from a small pot.

The incident is narrated when Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam was given poison in meat offered by a Jewish woman. The poison was placed in every part and more so in the foreshank. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam stopped eating and confirmed that the ‘Lamb is telling me it is poisoned’. This narration took place after Khayber. The Prophet salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam pardoned her but as a sahaabi (ra) died as a result of the poison, she was killed as punishment. This meal later caused the illness of Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam and led to their departure from this world. In this way, Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam became a martyr and they were given this virtue and honour of martyrdom.
 

Other miracles are mentioned where Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam kept asking for foreshank and kept being given. Allah (swt) gives what the blessed wish for. Allah (swt) decrees first and then inspires us to ask for it. 

The care of Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam is narrated when he stopped Sayyidina Ali (ra) from eating dates as Sayyidina Ali had a fever. Dates are hot by nature. Other narrations confirm that if we suffer from a fever, we should drink cold water and also give sadaqah - charity of water. Sayyidina Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam is the healer of soul, heart and body.

A Jewish Rabbi by the name of Hasrat Abdullah bin Salaam (Ra) brought his child to Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasallam to be blessed. Rasulullah salla lahu alayhi wa’ale hi wasalam blessed the child and this child went onto live for 94 years in health.
     


Only Sunnah can abrogate Sunnah 

In earlier times, the Sunnah would be to perform wudu – ablution, if the meal eaten had been cooked on fire. This was later abrogated as the Sunnah. It is Sunnah to abrogate or supersede another Sunnah. Another example of this is that at one time it was obligatory to leave in your inheritance something for the poor. This was abrogated later in the Qur’an.