#422: Drinking Milk

Question:

Assalamualaikum ustaz. Is there any sunnah one should do when drinking milk? Thank you.

Answer:

Waalaikumussalam wrt. wbt.,

Alhamdulillah, praise and gratitude to Allah SWT for His countless blessings for us all. Praise and salutations to our beloved Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his family, companions, and all those who follow his footsteps until the Final day.

Mukadimah

Milk is one of the most nutritious foods and a favourite beverage around the world. Milk contains almost all the nutrients (beneficial) needed by humans for their growth and health. The reason is milk contains a high level of nutrients and it enables it to function as a team that helps to maintain the body’s strength and health.

All female mammals produce milk for their young. Generally, when thinking about milk, what is pictured is cow’s milk. This is because cows supply almost all the milk needed across the country. However, in some parts of the world, other livestock supplies milk. For example, goat skins are very popular in some parts of Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia. Camels supply milk in the Arabian desert, Central Asia and North Africa. Some South Americans drink Ilama milk. In the Arctic, its inhabitants get their milk from reindeer. Sheep, on the other hand, supply most of the milk in Greece, Iran and Turkey. Meanwhile, water buffaloes are a source of milk in Egypt, India, Pakistan and most Southeast Asian countries.

Butter, cheese, ice cream, yoghurt, and some other foods are made from milk. Milk or the result is also an ingredient in dishes such as cakes, casseroles, puddings, and sauces. Milk is also used in the manufacture of some goods other than food. For example, manufacturing plants use casein (produced from caseinogen, a major protein in milk) to make waterproof glues, various types of plastics and paints. [1]

Allah SWT states:

وَإِنَّ لَكُمْ فِي الْأَنْعَامِ لَعِبْرَةً نُسْقِيكُمْ مِمَّا فِي بُطُونِهِ مِنْ بَيْنِ فَرْثٍ وَدَمٍ لَبَنًا خَالِصًا سَائِغًا لِلشَّارِبِينَ

“And indeed, for you in grazing livestock is a lesson. We give you drink from what is in their bellies – between excretion and blood – pure milk, palatable to drinkers.” [2]

Syeikh al-Sa’di stated that indeed from livestock Allah SWT has prepared benefits for all of you, there is something that you can learn from them, which is it shows the perfection of the greatness of Allah and the vastness of His blessings. When He provides you drinks from the stomachs of these animals which consists of filth and blood. He gives drinks from these two matters, pure milk free from anything that can turn it murky (not mixed with anything), that is palatable and delicious for people who drink it. It also quenches the thirst and fills people who drink it. None of these (is possible) except by the power of Allah SWT and not just a natural phenomenon. Is it called a natural phenomenon when usually what is excreted by animals from what they eat are filth and excrements and the drinks they drink are freshwater and saltwater becomes pure milk (free from anything else), palatable for its drinkers? [3]

The permissibility of drinking milk

There are numerous hadiths that described the prophet PBUH drinking milk. Among the narrations is from Abdullah bin Abbas R.Anhuma, he said:

أَهْدَتْ خالَتي إلى النبيِّ صَلّى اللهُ عليه وسلَّمَ ضِبابًا وأَقِطًا ولَبَنًا، فَوُضِعَ الضَّبُّ على مائِدَتِهِ، فلوْ كانَ حَرامًا لَمْ يُوضَعْ، وشَرِبَ اللَّبَنَ، وأَكَلَ الأقِطَ

“My aunt presented (roasted) mastigures, Iqt and milk to the Prophet (ﷺ) . The mastigures were put on his dining sheet, and if it was unlawful to eat, it would not have been put there. The Prophet (ﷺ) drank the milk and ate the Iqt only.” [4]

Likewise, in another hadith from Abu Bakar RA, he said:

انْطَلَقْتُ فَإِذَا أَنَا بِرَاعِي غَنَمٍ يَسُوقُ غَنَمَهُ، فَقُلْتُ: لِمَنْ أَنْتَ؟، قَالَ: لِرَجُلٍ مِنْ قُرَيْشٍ، فَسَمَّاهُ فَعَرَفْتُهُ. فَقُلْتُ: هَلْ فِي غَنَمِكَ مِنْ لَبَنٍ؟ فَقَالَ: نَعَمْ. فَقُلْتُ: هَلْ أَنْتَ حَالِبٌ لِي؟ قَالَ: نَعَمْ. فَأَمَرْتُهُ، فَاعْتَقَلَ شَاةً مِنْ غَنَمِهِ، ثُمَّ أَمَرْتُهُ أَنْ يَنْفُضَ ضَرْعَهَا مِنَ الغُبَارِ، ثُمَّ أَمَرْتُهُ أَنْ يَنْفُضَ كَفَّيْهِ، فَقَالَ: هَكَذَا – ضَرَبَ إِحْدَى كَفَّيْهِ بِالأُخْرَى – فَحَلَبَ كُثْبَةً مِنْ لَبَنٍ، وَقَدْ جَعَلْتُ لِرَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ إِدَاوَةً عَلَى فَمِهَا خِرْقَةٌ، فَصَبَبْتُ عَلَى اللَّبَنِ حَتَّى بَرَدَ أَسْفَلُهُ، فَانْتَهَيْتُ إِلَى النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، فَقُلْتُ: اشْرَبْ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، فَشَرِبَ حَتَّى رَضِيتُ

“While I was on my way, all of a sudden, I saw a shepherd driving his sheep, I asked him whose servant he was. He replied that he was the servant of a man from Quraish, and then he mentioned his name and I recognized him. I asked, “Do your sheep have some milk?” He replied in the affirmative. I said, “Are you going to milk for me?” He replied in the affirmative. I ordered him and he tied the legs of one of the sheep. Then I told him to clean the udder (teats) of dust and to remove dust off his hands. He removed the dust off his hands by clapping his hands. He then milked a little milk. I put the milk for Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) in a pot and closed its mouth with a piece of cloth and poured water over it till it became cold. I took it to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said, “Drink, O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)!” He drank it till I was pleased.” [5]

Sunnah or practises when drinking milk

There are several sunnah that Rasullullah PBUH is always mindful of when he was drinking milk. Among them are:

First, mixes milk with some water.

This is as stated in a narration from Anas bin Malik RA who said:

أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أُتِيَ بِلَبَنٍ قَدْ شِيبَ بِمَاءٍ، وَعَنْ يَمِينِهِ أَعْرَابِيٌّ، وَعَنْ شِمَالِهِ أَبُو بَكْرٍ، فَشَرِبَ ثُمَّ أَعْطَى الأَعْرَابِيَّ، وَقَالَ: الأَيْمَنَ فَالأَيْمَنَ

“It was brought to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) a cup of milk mixed with water, while there was on his right a desert Arab and on his left Abu Bakr. He (the Holy Prophet) drank; he then gave it to the desert Arab and said: (Give to one) who is on the right, then again who is on the right.” [6]

Regarding this matter, Imam al-Nawawi stated that this hadith is an explanation to a clear sunnah in line with what has been described through clear syarak evidences that it is sunnah to prioritize the right in all good and – honoured matters. Among them are people on one’s right side for the purpose of offering a drink or others even if the person is a child or a person of less stature, for Rasullullah PBUH prioritizes a Bedouin over Abu Bakar RA. Furthermore, it is impermissible to mix water with milk if it is to be sold because it is included under fraud. Scholars stated that the wisdom of mixing milk and water is the same as cooling it down, increasing its amount or both. [7]

Moreover, al-‘Iraqi also said this hadith shows the permissibility of mixing milk and water if it is for one’s own use, family or guests. There is also a possibility that mixing water with the milk is to remove or lessen the sourness of the milk. [8]

Moreover, it may be because of the characteristic of the milk itself and the factor of the local region itself as stated by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani where they mix water to the milk when it was freshly milled, it is warm and the same for the temperature of the region – which is in Hijaz – that is usually hot. Thus, they decrease the temperature of the milk with cold water. [9]

Second, rinsing one’s mouth with water.

It is sunnah for us to rinse our mouths after drinking milk as mentioned in the prophetic guidance in various narrations. In a narration of Ibn Abbas R.Anhuma, he said:

أنَّ رَسولَ اللَّهِ ﷺ شَرِبَ لَبَنًا فَمَضْمَضَ، وقالَ : إنَّ له دَسَمًا

“God’s messenger drank some milk and rinsed his mouth saying, “It contains greasiness.” [10]

Furthermore, Ibn Khuzaimah also stated in his book, that the chapter that mentioned the evidence of rinsing one’s mouth after drinking milk is sunnah to remove the greasiness – the greasiness from the milk – in one’s mouth and doesn’t obligate rinsing one’s mouth after drinking it. [11]

Moreover, Imam al-Nawawi also said that this hadith includes evidence that it is sunnah to rinse one’s mouth after drinking milk. The same goes for other food and drinks it is sunnah to rinse one’s mouth – after eating and drinking – so that there isn’t any residue that one might swallow when one is praying. Furthermore, it is also to remove the greasiness and fa as well as cleanse one’s mouth. [12]

While Ibn Muflih al-Hanbali is also of the opinion that it is sunnah to rinse one’s mouth after drinking milk. Then, he stated that some contemporary scholars in madhhab Hanbali cited doctors that drinking milk frequently may damage one’s teeth and gums. Hence, it is necessary to rinse one’s mouth after drinking it. [13]

Thus, we can understand that among the wisdoms of rinsing one’s mouth is to maintain the cleanliness of one’s mouth from any odour or others that may cause discomfort to others, appropriate with the values that one should be concerned about by our religion regarding the matters of hygiene and purification. This is as narrated from Abu Malik al-Asy’ari where Rasullullah PBUH said:

الطُّهُورُ شَطْرُ الإِيمَانِ

“Purity is half of iman (faith).” [14]

Third, supplicating before and after drinking milk.

Basically, it is sunnah for us to recite basmalah before eating and drinking. This is based on a ahdith from Umar bin Abu Salamah, he said:

كُنْتُ غُلاَمًا فِي حَجْرِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، وَكَانَتْ يَدِي تَطِيشُ فِي الصَّحْفَةِ. فَقَالَ لِي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «يَا غُلاَمُ، سَمِّ اللَّهَ، وَكُلْ بِيَمِينِكَ، وَكُلْ مِمَّا يَلِيكَ». فَمَا زَالَتْ تِلْكَ طِعْمَتِي بَعْدُ

“I was a boy under the care of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and my hand used to go around the dish while I was eating. So, Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said to me, ‘O boy! Mention the Name of Allah and eat with your right hand, and eat of the dish what is nearer to you.” Since then, I have applied those instructions when eating.” [15]

Among the wisdoms of reciting basmalah is so that the food and drink are blessed by Allah SWT and distanced from shaytan. A companion of the Prophet PBUH narrated:

كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ جَالِسًا وَرَجُلٌ يَأْكُلُ فَلَمْ يُسَمِّ حَتَّى لَمْ يَبْقَ مِنْ طَعَامِهِ إِلَّا لُقْمَةٌ، فَلَمَّا رَفَعَهَا إِلَى فِيهِ قَالَ: بِسْمِ اللَّهِ أَوَّلَهُ وَآخِرَهُ، فَضَحِكَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ثُمَّ قَالَ: مَا زَالَ الشَّيْطَانُ يَأْكُلُ مَعَهُ، فَلَمَّا ذَكَرَ اسْمَ اللَّهِ اسْتَقَاءَ مَا فِي بَطْنِهِ

“A man who was eating and had not mentioned God’s name said when he raised the last morsel to his mouth, “In the name of God at the beginning and at the end of it.” The Prophet laughed and said, “The devil kept eating along with him, but when he mentioned God’s name, he vomited what was in his belly.” [16]

In Hisn al-Muslim, it is stated that whoever is blessed with food by Allah SWT, then he should recite:

اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِيهِ وَأَطْعِمْنَا خَيْراً مِنْهُ

“O Allah, bless us in it and provide us with better than it.” [17]

Whoever is blessed with milk, he should supplicate:

اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِيهِ وَزِدْنَا مِنْهُ

“O Allah, bless us in it and give us more of it.” [18]

Both of these supplications is based on the narration from Ibn Abbas R.Anhuma, he said:

كُنْتُ فِي بَيْتِ مَيْمُونَةَ فَدَخَلَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ وَمَعَهُ خَالِدُ بْنُ الْوَلِيدِ فَجَاءُوا بِضَبَّيْنِ مَشْوِيَّيْنِ عَلَى ثُمَامَتَيْنِ فَتَبَزَّقَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَقَالَ خَالِدٌ: إِخَالُكَ تَقْذُرُهُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ؟ قَالَ: أَجَلْ ثُمَّ أُتِيَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ بِلَبَنٍ فَشَرِبَ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: إِذَا أَكَلَ أَحَدُكُمْ طَعَامًا فَلْيَقُلْ: اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِيهِ وَأَطْعِمْنَا خَيْرًا مِنْهُ وَإِذَا سُقِيَ لَبَنًا فَلْيَقُلْ: اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِيهِ وَزِدْنَا مِنْهُ فَإِنَّهُ لَيْسَ شَيْءٌ يُجْزِئُ مِنْ الطَّعَامِ وَالشَّرَابِ إِلَّا اللَّبَنُ

“I was in the house of Maymunah. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) accompanied by Khalid ibn al-Walid entered. Two roasted long-tailed lizards (dabb) placed on the sticks were brought to him. The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) spat. Khalid said: I think that you abominate it, Messenger of Allah. He said: Yes. Then the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) was brought milk, and he drank (it). The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) then said: When one of you eats food, he should say: O Allah, bless us in it, and give us food (or nourishment) better than it. When he is given milk to drink, he should say: O Allah! bless us in it and give us more of it, for no food or drink satisfies like milk.” [19]

Syeikh ‘Abd al-Muhsin al-‘Abbad stated that this supplication is specific for whoever is drinking milk compared to others, for milk is sufficient – which means filling – and there isn’t a need for other food or drink. [20]

While for supplication after eating and drinking that can be practised are: [21]

According to a narration from Mu’az bin Anas where Rasullullah PBUH said:

مَنْ أكَلَ طَعَامًا، فَقال: الحَمْدُ للهِ الَّذِي أَطْعَمَنِي هَذَا، وَرَزَقنِيهِ مِنْ غَيْرِ حَوْلٍ مِنِّي وَلَا قُوَّةٍ، غُفِرَ لَهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِهِ

“If anyone eats food and then says, “Praise be to God who has fed me with this food and provided me with it through no might or power on my part,” he will be forgiven his former sins.” [22]

Likewise, there is a narration from Abu Umamah al-Bahili stating that the Prophet PBUH was picking up his food containers (after eating), then the Prophet PBUH said:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ حَمْداً كَثِيراً طَيِّباً مُبَارَكاً فِيهِ، غَيْرَ مَكْفِيٍّ وَلاَ مُوَدَّعٍ، وَلاَ مُسْتَغْنَىً عَنْهُ رَبَّنَا

“All praise is to Allah, praise in abundance, good and blessed. It cannot [be compensated for, nor can it] be left, nor can it be done without, our Lord.” [23]

In another narration from Abu Umamah, he said that when the Prophet PBUH was picking up his containers (after eating) – then the Prophet PBUH said:

الحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي كَفَانَا وَأَرْوَانَا غَيْرَ مَكْفِيٍّ وَلاَ مَكْفُورٍ

“Upraise be to You, O our Lord! Your favor cannot be compensated, nor can be left, nor can be dispensed with, O our Lord!”

And sometimes, the Prophet PBUH would supplicate:

الحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّنَا، غَيْرَ مَكْفِيٍّ وَلاَ مُوَدَّعٍ وَلاَ مُسْتَغْنًى رَبَّنَا

 “Praise be to Allah Who has satisfied our needs and quenched our thirst. Your favor cannot by compensated or denied.” [24]

Lastly, we’d like to say that sunnah is vast and includes every angle and value displayed by the Prophet PBUH regardless of whether it is in the terms of words, actions, taqrir (acknowledgement), khuluqiyyah, khalqiyyah characteristics and the life of the Prophet PBUH whether it was before or after the Prophet PBUH was sent as the messenger as defined by hadith scholars.

Furthermore, Rasullullah PBUH is the best qudwah and uswah and it is obligatory to be an example for every Muslim in living their lives. A practise or matter that was done by the Prophet PBUH although is originally the custom or norm of the locals, however, if a person follows or does it due to his love and desire to follow the acts of the Prophet PBUH, he’ll be rewarded the same as Abdullah bin Umar R.Anhuma who was famous as the companions who strive to do whatever the Prophet PBUH did.

May Allah SWT grant us all a clear understanding in religion and grant us istiqamah in following the guidance of the Prophet PBUH. Amin.

Wallahu a’lam.

 

[1] See Ensiklopedia Dunia, (Trans. DBP), 20/510

[2] Surah al-Nahl: 66

[3] See Tafsir al-Sa‘di, pg. 443.

[4] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5402)

[5] Narrated by al-Bukhari (2439)

[6] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5619); Muslim (2029)

[7] See Majmu‘ Syarh al-Muhazzab, 13/200-201.

[8] See Tarh al-Tasrib fi Syarh al-Taqrib, 6/23.

[9] See Fath al-Bari, 10/76.

[10] Narrated by al-Bukhari (211)

[11] See Sahih Ibn Khuzaimah, 1/29.

[12] See al-Minhaj Syarh Sahih Muslim, 4/46.

[13] See al-Adab al-Syar‘iyyah, 3/219.

[14] Narrated by Muslim (223)

[15] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5376) and Muslim (2022)

[16] Narrated by Abu Daud (3768)

[17] See Hisn al-Muslim, pg. 109.

[18] Narrated by Abu Daud (3730); al-Tirmizi (3455); Ibn Majah (3322)

[19] See Syarah Sunan Abi Daud, 422/9.

[20] See Hisn al-Muslim, pg. 109-110.

[21] Narrated by Abu Daud (4023); al-Tirmizi (3458); Ibn Majah (3275)

[22] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5458); Ibn Hibban (5217)

[23] Narrated by al-Bukhari (5459)

[24] See Qawaid al-Tahdith, pg. 61.

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