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Sunnah postures of eating

Question

Is there a hadith regarding sitting in a specific posture while eating? What is the grade of the Hadith

Answer

There are a few narrations explaining the posture in which Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) ate:

1) Squatting

Sayyiduna Anas ibn Malik (radiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that he saw Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) squatting and eating dates.

(Sahih Muslim, hadith: 5299)

The arabic words of this narration are as follows:

رأيت النبي صلي الله عليه و سلم مقعيا يأكل تمرا

2) Erecting the right leg and sitting on the left leg

Abul Hasan Al Muqri has recorded a naration in his ‘Shamail’ on the authority of Sayyiduna Anas (radiyallahu ‘anhu) that when Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) would sit to eat, he would sit on his left knee and erect his right knee…

Hafiz ‘Iraqi (rahimahullah) has deemed the chain of narrators of the above narration as weak.

(Al Mughni ‘An Hamlil Asfar, Hadith: 1304)

The Arabic words of this narration are as follows:

كان اذا قعد علي الطعام استوفز علي ركبته اليسري و اقام اليمنى

3) Kneeling on the knees OR sitting in the tashahhud position

Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn Busr (radiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was once gifted a sheep, Nabi (sallalallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) knelt on his knees and began eating…

(Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadith: 3263)

Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) has classified the above hadith as sound (hasan)

(Fathul Bari, hadith: 5399)

The Arabic words of this narration are as follows:

أهديت للنبي صلي الله عليه و سلم شاة فجثا علي ركبتيه يأكل

 

Some ‘Ulama like Imam Ghazali (rahimahullah) have interpreted the above to mean ‘sitting in the tashahhud position’.

This is also is a legitimate explanation.

(See Ithafus Sadah Al Muttaqin, vol. 5 pg. 214, Zadul Ma’ad, vol. 4 pg. 203 and ‘Umdatul Qari, Hadith: 5398)

   قال ابن حجر و العيني : فالمستحب في صفة الجلوس للاكل ان يكون جاثيا علي ركبتيه و ظهور قدميه أو ينصب الرجل اليمني و يجلس علي اليسري

    (فتح البارى, 5399) (عمدة القارى, 5398)

قال الغزالي: ربما جثا للاكل علي ركبتيه و جلس علي ظهر قدميه و ربما نصب رجله اليمني و جلس علي اليسرى

(اتحاف السادة  ج.5 ص. 214)

قال السيوطي: بل يأكل جاثيا علي ركبتيه أو مقعيا أو علي قدمه أو يقيم ركبته اليمني و يقعد علي اليسرى

(عمل اليوم و الليلة, ص. 32)

And Allah Ta’ala Knows best

 

Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala

 

Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar

 

Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar