Fatwa ID: 04639
Answered by: Mufti Javed ibn Nazir Kachhalia
I write with regards to being invited to team lunches/dinner with non-Muslim colleagues who will be consuming alcohol along with their meal.
I have always abstained on the basis of the following Hadith “The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said: Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should not sit on a table where alcohol is served.”
The issue is that I cannot find much written on the subject by the Ulama and when I speak to my fellow Muslim colleagues who offer salaat with me at work, they are of the opinion that it’s ok; this creates an issue of confusion amongst my colleagues in that my Muslim colleagues and I pray together daily but I am the only one who claims that it is not permissible to attend a team lunch/dinner as directed by my religion.
Please can you provide some guidance on the matter?.
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
In regards to your query, we need to understand a few points and rulings:
- If the gathering is such in which with the meal, there will be other haram acts, like; naked or semi-naked women or men, inappropriate movies, dancing, singing, eating only Haram or drinking only haram, etc., then those kinds of gatherings are not permitted
- If the gathering or meal is such in which we are partaking a religious celebration this is also not permitted
Narrated Abdullah ibn Umar: The Prophet (ﷺ) said: He who copies any people is one of them. (Abu Dawood)
- A gathering or meal with non-Muslim (Friends of work colleagues), in which there is no haram or impermissible acts, but meal that are halaal and also permissible drinks, this is permissible, regardless of the rest or some are consuming alcohol or haram food.
Sheikh Yusuf Ludhyanvi has written (nearest translation):
“Islam is no the name of adapting other communities or practices, and to imitate the non-Muslims in many of their practices it’s not permissible… The Prophet (ﷺ)would invite non-Muslim also and would host them and vice versa the Prophet (ﷺ)would accept an invitation from non-Muslim for meals. Scholars have mentioned that this shouldn’t be done often, as there would be haram items, but if a need arises then its permissible” (Aap ke Masa’ail aur unke Hal, Vol 7, Pg 191, Maktaba Ludhyanvi)
From above it’s clear, that is permissible to some extent, but one should always try to avoid such gatherings as much as they can. Our Taqwa and piety should be that level in which we should abstain, as the Hadith mentioned in the question.
Only Allah knows best.
Written by Mufti Javed ibn Nazir Kachhalia
Checked and Approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham