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Does Smoking Break the Fast?

Fasting in the holy Shari’ah (jurisprudence) of Islam is equal to that with the intention of obeying God; a person does not eat or drink and avoids other things, which will be elaborated on later, all day long (from fajr to maghrib: from dawn till dusk, when the redness in the eastern sky is gone).

Is it okay to smoke while fasting? We would like to draw your attention to the following Fatwas and answers of the Shia Maraje’:

Ayatollah Sistani

Question: Does smoking make fasting void  in the month of Ramadan?

Answers: The obligatory precaution is that the fasting person does not allow the smoke from cigarette and tobacco and similar to these reach the throat.

Question: When a person is addicted to cigarette and opium and in Ramadan can only fast if is allowed to smoke cigarette or opium; can such a person fast or not?

Answer: According to obligatory precaution must do Imsak (avoid anything which make fasting void).

Ruling 1585. The obligatory precaution is that a fasting person must not cause the smoke of cigarettes, tobacco, or something similar to reach his throat.

Ruling 1615. If a person does not take care to prevent dust, smoke, etc. from  entering  his  throat,  and  if  he  was  quiet  sure  that  these things  would  not  reach  his  throat,  his  fast  is  in  order;  but  if  he only felt that they might not reach his throat, it is better that he should observe that fast again as qadha.

Ruling:1616. If a person forgets that he is fasting and does not exercise care,  or  if  dust  or  any  other  similar  thing  enters  his  throat involuntarily, his fast does not become void.

Ayatollah Khamenei

Question: I am addicted to cigarettes. During Ramadan (while fasting and avoiding smoking) I cannot help being bad-tempered and aggressive to others. This has caused dissatisfaction of my family members; I also suffer from my difficult situation. What is my duty?

Answer: Ramadan fasts are obligatory for you; based on obligatory precaution, you are not permitted to smoke a cigarette while fasting. You should not behave badly with others for no reason.

Question: Can a cigarette addict who needs to smoke several cigarettes during the day fast? Is their fast valid?

Answer: Based on obligatory precaution, while fasting, the smoking any type of tobacco product must be avoided. In case of indispensability [addiction] the obligation for fasting is not eliminated.

Question: What directive applies to the usage of tobacco products like cigarettes during fasting hours?

Answer: The obligatory precaution is that the fasting person avoids smoke of all tobacco products as well as narcotics that are absorbed through the nose or by placing under the tongue.

Ruling: Based on obligatory precaution, a fasting person must avoid inhaling condensed, suspended dust–like the dust caused by the sweeping of an earthen floor. In addition, the smoke of cigarettes and other tobacco products invalidate fasts, based on obligatory precaution.

Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi

 It is an obligatory precaution that one who is fasting abstains from smoking cigarettes and all tobacco products and also not to allow thick smoke reach his throat, but going to the shower where there is steam is okay.

Ayatollah Bahjat

The fast not being broken by dust and smoke that isn’t thick and isn’t a substitute for food or isn’t tonic, isn’t devoid of reason, although abstaining is ahwat (in accordance with precaution).

Ayatollah Nouri Hamedani

The fasting individual must abstain from thick steam that changes back to liquid in the mouth and also, as per obligatory precaution, must not allow the smoke of cigarettes and tobacco products and the like to reach his throat.

Ayatollah Shobeiri Zanjani

In the holy month of Ramadan, smoking and using tobacco products openly in a way that is disrespectful to the fast is impermissible, and if it isn’t disrespectful, it is still impermissible as per precaution, and in the case of an individual smoking, he should still abstain from all other invalidators of the fast till iftar, and also must perform the qaza (make up for) that day.

Ayatollahs Araki, Golpaygani, Khu’i, Fazel, Tabrizi, and Safi

It is an obligatory precaution not to allow the smoke of cigarettes and tobacco and the like to reach the throat while fasting.

About Ali Teymoori

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