كَثرَةُ الأكلِ مِنَ الشَّرَهِ، والشَّرَهُ شَرُّ العُيوبِ۔

Overeating is from gluttony, and gluttony is the worst flaw.



Overeating is from gluttony, and gluttony is the worst flaw.

— Imam Ali a.s.
(Ghurar al-Hikam: Eating)

Personal Reflection

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah, the Lord of all the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (), his pure progeny, and his noble companions.

The Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states,

Kathratu al-akli mina al-sharh, wa al-sharhu sharru al-'uyub.

This Hadith highlights the negative consequences of overeating and gluttony. Let us delve into the deeper meaning of this Hadith in light of the Quran.

The word "kathratu" means abundance or excessiveness. In this context, it refers to excessive eating or overeating. The word "akl" means food or eating. "Min" denotes "from" or "due to." Therefore, "kathratu al-akli" can be understood as the act of consuming an excessive amount of food.

The word "sharh" means gluttony or indulgence in food. It refers to the desire for excessive eating, often driven by greed or lack of self-control. Gluttony is considered a negative trait as it leads to various physical and spiritual harms.

Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) states that overeating is the worst flaw. This implies that indulging in excessive food consumption is not only harmful to one's physical health but also detrimental to one's spiritual well-being. Let us explore the Quranic verses that shed light on the consequences of overeating and the importance of moderation in our lives.

Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) reminds us in Surah Al-A'raf (7:31),

O children of Adam, take your adornment at every masjid, and eat and drink, but be not excessive. Indeed, He likes not those who commit excess.

This verse emphasizes the importance of moderation in all aspects of our lives, including eating and drinking. Allah dislikes those who indulge in excessiveness, as it goes against the principles of balance and self-control.

Furthermore, in Surah Al-Isra (17:29), Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) warns,

And do not make your hand [as] chained to your neck or extend it completely and [thereby] become blamed and insolvent.

This verse metaphorically highlights the consequences of overindulgence. When we allow our desires to control us, we become enslaved to our own cravings, leading to financial difficulties and societal disapproval.

Overeating not only affects our physical health but also has spiritual implications. In Surah Al-A'raf (7:157), Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) describes the qualities of the Prophet Muhammad (), saying,

Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet, whom they find written in what they have of the Torah and the Gospel, who enjoins upon them what is right and forbids them what is wrong and makes lawful for them the good things and prohibits for them the evil and relieves them of their burden and the shackles which were upon them. So they who have believed in him, honored him, supported him and followed the light which was sent down with him - it is those who will be the successful.

This verse highlights the importance of following the guidance of the Prophet (), who taught us to avoid excessive indulgence and to maintain a balanced lifestyle.

Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) warns us about the negative consequences of overeating and gluttony. When we indulge in excessive food consumption, we harm our bodies, leading to various health issues such as obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. Moreover, overeating can lead to laziness, lack of productivity, and a decrease in spiritual awareness. It distracts us from fulfilling our responsibilities and hinders our ability to worship Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) with sincerity and focus.

By practicing moderation in our eating habits, we not only maintain good physical health but also strengthen our spiritual connection with Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). We should strive to eat in moderation, being mindful of the blessings Allah has bestowed upon us. We should be grateful for the sustenance provided to us and avoid wasting food, as mentioned in Surah Al-A'raf (7:31).

In conclusion, the Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) serves as a reminder for Muslims to avoid overeating and gluttony. By practicing moderation in our consumption, we maintain a balance between our physical and spiritual well-being. Let us strive to follow the guidance of the Quran and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad () and the Ahl al-Bayt (عَلَيْهِمُ ٱلسَّلَامُ), and lead a life of moderation and self-control. May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) grant us the wisdom and strength to overcome our desires and maintain a balanced lifestyle.

. : . (Readers are advised to verify the sources mentioned above, and to independently research for an accurate understanding of Hadith. Remember, personal research and seeking guidance from scholars are essential in gaining a better insight. Please, do contact us if you find any wrong citations or explanations.)

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