ILM UL BAATIN (The hidden knowledge)


I don't know which of the two terms better describes me - gourmet or glutton; I do know that I love my food. Food, of different tastes and sizes, is my weakness. I love food and I enjoy eating delicious meals - I guess that makes me a gourmet. Then I also eat voraciously; for me eating thrice a day is the unacceptable minimum. I live, so I eat; then I eat, so I live. That must make me a glutton. Before you start making personal judgement about me, look at thyself1 You too must eat, otherwise you would have no nourishment and then you'll die. The difference is that I take eating as a serious business - it is more important than most other things I do; in fact, it is the core of what I do! If you imagined that I am one "Fatty bomborn"  or a sumo wrestler ... you are so wrong. I am big but not huge; nor am I fat by any standard. I weigh 85 kg for a frame of 1.83m (about 6ft); my body is fit and there is no trace of bulge in my midsection.

Alhmadulillah (Allah be praised) that I have such a nice body despite my food intake. Oh, I love food so much that the only two things I definitely do not eat are pork and poison. I don't eat poison obviously because I have a desire to live and I shun pork because Allah forbids it:

"forbidden to you (for food) are dead animals, blood, the flesh of swine and the meat of that which has been slaughtered as a sacrifice for other than Allah ..... " (Q5: 3).

You need to see me at the dining table! The way I 'denge' and 'poz' with the eating fork on my left hand and the knife well placed on the right would make the Queen proud and put Baba Fryo to shame (when he asks; 'wetin he get?' I can retort: I 'get' good taste for food!). As an architect, I eat as I work - sometimes eating sitting down or munching snacks while standing. Abdus- Sabur, my well-bearded friend, is forever telling me that some snacks, biscuits and sweets may be haraam because they are prepared with animal fat (read: fat from swine) or that they contain gelatin (another pork product). I have a ready response: Allah specifically forbade the flesh of swine (ham, bacon, pork chops, pork sausage etc.) but did not outlaw the oil or fat of swine.

Although I am a glutton, I also share my food with people because it is rewarding. The Prophet (PBUH) advised that

'the food of one suffices for two, the food of two suffices for four and the food of four suffices for eight". (Muslim).

Even then, I like to eat alone, separately until my belly is so full that it cannot take even one more morsel. I don't see the merit of eating together like some people do; in fact it reminds me of my childhood days when eating together  always ended with fisticuffs and abuses. Alhamdulillah, those days of shortage are gone forever; Allah has provided enough for me to maintain my voracious appetite. I just obey the injunction:

"And eat of the things which Allah has provided for you, lawful and good, and fear Allah in whom you believe." (Q5:88)

As much as I love food, I keep out of harm 's way (poisonous food) and out of haraam (forbidden) food. So the food of the Xmas season, the Easter 'frejon', the Gregorian New Year Day are off limits because they have been sacrificed to other than Allah. (Q2:168). With my food taste my friends earnestly believe that I will end up being very fat. Right now they call me Fatimid, the name of the fat Arab tribe that ruled parts of Northern Africa from 909-1171CE. I really do not mind, since the Fatimids were Muslims!

There are five- inaccuracies (statements) in this story. Use your hidden knowledge to find them. See solution on page 23.


Paragraph 2 - Any food prepared with animal fat (pork fat) is forbidden since it is extracted from the flesh. Check your biscuit & sweets and ensure they are made with vegetable fat, otherwise don't eat them.

Paragraph 3-The Prophet (PBUH) forbade eating with the left hand!

Paragraph 3 - The Prophet (PBUH) said: "Man has not filled a worse vessel than the belly" Never eat to your fill; it is un-Islamic,

Paragraph 4 - Eat together, not I separately. The Prophet (PBUH) said.:"Eat together and pronounce the . name of Allah over your food. It will be blessed for you. "(Abu Daud)

Paragraph 5 - The Fatimids are descendants of Fatima (RA) and Ali (RA); not any fat Arab tribe. Yes, they ruled Northern Africa as given.

This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited

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