Is sheesha haram

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Is working in a shisha lounge fine? and if shisha smoking is harram?


(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)




Is working in Sheesha lounge haram?

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Cigarettes, cigars, ‘sheesha’, or tobacco smoking were not available or prevalent at the time of the Revelation of the Quran, thus there is no specific mention of tobacco smoking in the Quran or the Sunnah.  Thus it is upto the jurists and the scholars in Islam to come to a consensus regarding its ruling and verdict in light of the guidance of the Quran and the Sunnah. 


Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verse 29:

O ye who believe!  Eat not up your property among yourselves in vanities: but let there be amongst you traffic and trade by mutual good-will:   nor kill (or destroy) yourselves: for verily Allah hath been to you Most Merciful.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 2 Surah Baqarah verse 195:

And spend of your substance in the cause of Allah,  and make not your own hands contribute to your destruction,  but do good; for Allah loveth those who do good.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraaf verse 157:

157    "Those who follow the apostle the unlettered Prophet (Mohamed (saws)), whom they find mentioned in their own (Scriptures); in the Torah and the Gospel; for he (saws) commands them what is just and forbids them what is evil: he allows them as lawful what is ‘tayyebaat’ (good and pure) andprohibits them from what is ‘khabaayith’ (bad and impure);  He (saws) releases them from their heavy burdens and from the yokes that are upon them.  So it is those who believe in him, honor him, help him, and follow the Light which is sent down with him; it is they who will prosper."


The absolute majority of the scholars (and even the scientific world for that matter!) are unanimous in their opinion that any kind of tobacco smoking is extremely dangerous to one’s and others’ health, and tantamount to the violation of the above commands of the above quoted verses of Surah Nisaa and Surah Baqarah where Allah Subhanah commands the believes ‘not to kill or destroy yourselves’ nor ‘make your own hands contribute to your destruction’! Besides, in light of the clear guidance of the above quoted verse of Surah Aaraaf, every ‘khabaayith’ (evil, bad, impure thing, etc.) is forbidden to the believers. 


To declare a substance ‘haraam’ or ‘halaal’ is the sole and exclusive Right of Allah and His Messenger (saws) alone.  Because the likes of cigarettes, cigars, ‘sheesha’ or tobacco smoking, etc. are not specifically declared ‘haraam’ by name in the Quran and the Sunnah, the good scholars have abstained from declaring it as outright ‘haraam. But the absolute majority of the scholars are of the opinion that since tobacco smoking seriously harms one’s health and is amongst the ‘khabaayith’ (evil, bad, impure substances); it is definitely closer to the ‘haraam’ than to the ‘halaal’, and it would be best for the believers to fear Allah and abstain from not only consuming it, but deriving any benefit from it.  And Allah Alone Knows Best.



One cannot say with conviction that the salary one gets paid from working from such places is haraam; but without a doubt the person would be guilty of associating with something that has been clearly described and declared as ‘haraam’ by Allah and His Messenger (saws). 


My dear beloved brother, In the absolutely extreme case, where one is absolutely convinced that

there is no other job available then there is no harm or sin in working at a shisha lounge. But it would be best for you to immediately seek to employ your talents elsewhere where the boundaries of Allah are not violated; and if you make this intention and move only for the sake and fear of Allah Subhanah, it is expected that not only will your Lord Most Gracious provide you from His Endless Bounties in the life of this world, but He will appreciate your noble intention and deeds, and bestow upon you a generous reward in the eternal life of the Hereafter.


Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.49 Narrated by An Numan bin Bashir

I heard Allah's Messenger (saws) saying, 'Both legal (halaal) and illegal (haraam) things are clearly evident, but in between them there are doubtful (suspicious) things and most of the people have no knowledge about them.  So whoever saves himself from these suspicious things saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these suspicious things is like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near the ‘Hima’ (private pastures or boundaries) of someone else, and at any moment he is liable to get in it. (O people!) Beware! Every king has a ‘Hima’ and the ‘Hima’ of Allah on the earth is His illegal (forbidden) things.’


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is only ones. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your brother and well wisher in Islam,



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