Islamic marriage advice and family advice

Oath on Quran and breaking it

Man smoking cigarette

Hi, all while this question has been asked many time on this forum and i have read responses on it as well, but somethings are not clear to me and i am hoping to get clarification on it.

When i was 15 years old, i got into habit of smoking. Feeling bad that i am the only person amongst my friends and family smoking and since i wasn't able to quit on my own, i thought that if i swear on Quran, then i will surely quit. So i placed my hand on stack of "Siparahs" (The Holy Quran in 30 books) and took an oath to not smoke again. For many years i didn't smoke because of this.

After some years of taking the oath, I have smoked many times after that, even fell into depression thinking that Allah will punish me. Then it has always been that i start smoking, feel very guilty, and then stop again. After reading responses here on breaking an oath and expiation, i have done that many times also, to feed 10 people twice a day. I know that smoking in itself is bad and so on.

My question is that after smoking many times after taking the oath, and doing expiation for it, is my oath still valid, or is it that whenever i do smoke, i have to do expiation. I do know that the best thing would be not to smoke ever again, but sometimes it can be very hard to stick by my oath, this vicious cycle of smoking, feeling guilty, quitting, paying kuffarah take a toll on many aspects of my life. I wish i could simply not smoke ever, but it doesn't always happen.

So my question is, after all this, is my oath still valid, and if i smoke again, will Allah still punish me even though i have done kuffarah many times. Or even after what i have done, i should still respect my oath, aside from all the affects of smoking.

A muslim in confusing and suffering 🙁


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2 Responses »

  1. Assalaamu 'Alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakaatuh,

    Question #1:

    My question is that after smoking many times after taking the oath, and doing expiation for it, is my oath still valid, or is it that whenever i do smoke, i have to do expiation...


    If you sworn an oath by Allah to quit smoking, and you smoked afterward, then the first act of smoking, after the oath, is considered as the breaker of the oath. In this case, there become two separate sins, the sin of breaking the oath, and the sin of smoking.

    1). The sin of breaking the oath:

    The prescribed expiation in Quran 5: 89 (surah al-Ma'idah), suffices in wiping off this sin.

    The intention you made during the oath is very significant:

    If you specified in the oath, that there will be expiation on you each time you smoke, then you will pay expiation for each time you smoked.

    However, if you didn't specify this in your oath (that there will be expiation on you each time you smoke), then you will only pay one expiation for all the times that you smoked, which in actuality, is for breaking the oath in and of itself, and not for smoking. Unless if you meant that you intentionally repeated the oath multiple times on different separate occasions and then broke it each time, then in that case you will pay expiation for each broken oath.

    Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala says:

    "... He holds you accountable for your binding oaths. The atonement for it is by feeding ten needy people from the average of what you feed your families, or by clothing them, or by freeing a slave. Anyone who lacks the means shall fast for three days. That is the atonement for breaking your oaths when you have sworn them. So keep your oaths. Thus God makes clear His Revelations to you, that you may be grateful." Surah al-Ma'idah (Quran 5: 89)

    2). The sin of smoking:

    If you sworn an oath by Allah to avoid an act, and the act in of itself wasn't haram (prohibited) essentially, and then afterward you broke the oath, then in this case, you will only pay the expiation for breaking the oath, without repenting for the act. However, if the act was haram essentially (e.g. smoking...), then you must sincerely repent each time you smoke, regardless of whether the expiation has been paid already or not--the sinful act and the breaking of the oath are two separate sins.

    It doesn't matter how many times you smoke, you should trust that you will still be forgiven by Allah for each time you repent, in-shaa-Allah. He the Almighty and the Most-Merciful, never gets tired of forgiving sins, nor does He gets fed up with His servants when they repeat the same sin over and over again, so long as they don't stop repenting and saying istighfar (asking forgiveness from Allah) a lot. He even said that He loves such servants.

    "...Allah loves the repentant, and He loves those who keep clean." Surah al-Baqarah (Quran 2: 222)

    Say, "O My servants who have transgressed against themselves: do not despair of Allah's mercy, for Allah forgives all sins. He is indeed the Forgiver, the Clement." Surah az-Zumar (Quran 39: 53)

    Now, those are not my own words, but the words of the Almighty Allah, and there is no alteration in His words. And that is the promise of the Most-Merciful, He does not break His promise.

    "For them is good news in this life, and in the Hereafter. There is no alteration to the words of Allah. That is the supreme triumph." Surah Yunus (Quran 10: 64)

    "The promise of Allah--Allah never breaks His promise, but most people do not know." Surah ar-Rum (Quran 30: 6)

    Question #2:

    So my question is, after all this, is my oath still valid, and if i smoke again,


    If you only took one oath, then your oath is not valid until you take a new oath.

    Question #3:

    will Allah still punish me even though i have done kuffarah many times.


    You don't need to do many kaffarah, if you sworn only one oath. Only one Kaffarah is sufficient for breaking one intended oath. Instead of the many kaffarah, what is required of you is to repent to Allah each time you smoke.

    Question #4:

    Or even after what i have done, i should still respect my oath, aside from all the affects of smoking.


    Yes, we should try to respect our oaths when we make them. I understand that this may be difficult in some situations, however, working toward perfection and becoming loyal servants of Allah should be our main goal. We should seek both physical help (e.g. abstaining from things and places that motivates us to break our oaths) and spiritual help (saying Istighfar constantly, doing dhikr a lot, and seeking Allah's aid) in keeping our oaths.

    This is because keeping oaths is of the characteristics of successful believers. May Almighty Allah make us all of them. Ameen!

    As Almighty Allah says in the noble Quran:

    In the name of God, the Gracious, the Merciful.

    1. O you who believe! Fulfill your commitments...
    (Surah al-Ma'idah/Quran 5: 1)

    In the name of God, the Gracious, the Merciful.

    1. Successful are the believers.
    2. Those who are humble in their prayers.
    3. Those who avoid nonsense.
    4. Those who work for charity.
    5. Those who safeguard their chastity.
    6. Except from their spouses, or their dependents-for then they are free from blame.
    7. But whoever seeks anything beyond that-these are the transgressors.
    8. Those who are faithful to their trusts and pledges.
    9. Those who safeguard their prayers.
    10. These are the inheritors.
    11. Who will inherit Paradise, wherein they will dwell forever.
    (Surah al-Mu'minun/Quran 23: 1-11)

    You wrote:

    I wish i could simply not smoke ever, but it doesn't always happen.

    It's alright. The fact that you find it difficult to quit smoking doesn't mean that you are deprived of the mercy and love of Allah Ta'ala. So long as you keep on repenting each time you smoke, and seeking Almighty Allah's aid to help you quit smoking, you are still loved by Allah--you are still of His beloved and believing servants who are striving and working their way toward success and steadfastness.

    See surah al-Baqarah, as mentioned earlier:

    "...Allah loves the repentant, and He loves those who keep clean." (Quran 2: 222)

    Many scholars of the hearts have agreed upon that the fact that the secret of Allah's love lies in nowhere in other acts of worship, but in the repentance and asking forgiveness of Allah--it is the first rank for the beginners in the straight-path of Allah Ta'ala, and the final rank for the advanced and the mightiest servants of Allah Ta'ala in the path. Both the pious and the weak servants of Allah are required to be in a constant state of repentance to attain steadfastness and salvation. Even the great and the mightiest prophets and messengers of the Almighty Allah (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon them all) whom never sinned constantly repented and asked for forgiveness from Allah. If not for the fear of prolonging, I'd have discussed this topic in-depth and gave much references from both the Quran and Sunnah, and from the sayings of Authentic scholars of the hearts in Islam.

    However, in short, when the heart is in the constant state of repentance, istighfar and dhikr (even as it continues to slip from time to time), it eventually gets to a point (i.e. the station of loyalty to Allah) where it resists sins or anything harmful to it. This is because, the effects of the servant's repentance, istighfar and dhikr will turn into a light, which will keep growing, and growing till it becomes like an Angel or a strength in the heart of the servant, and thus this Angel or the strength becomes connected to something divine called "the proof of Almighty Allah", which will be between Allah and His servant. And thus, whenever the heart becomes weak or tempted by Shaytan, the Almighty Allah commands for this proof to be revealed to the heart (some forms of this proof may even be revealed to the physical eyes, to some servants of Allah depending on their levels), which helps them overcome all obstacles and weaknesses that stand their way, and increases them in iman (faith) and yaqeen (certainty).

    An example of this is found in the story of prophet Yusuf ('Alayhi as-salaatu wasallam). He was seduced by the Egyptian governor's wife, yet his home in Aakhirah was revealed to him, and then the desire got lost instantly, as the twinkling of the eye, or even nearer.

    23. She in whose house he (Yusuf) was living tried to seduce him. She shut the doors, and said, "I am yours." He said, "Allah forbid! He is my Lord. He has given me a good home. Sinners never succeed."

    24. She desired him, and he desired her, had he not seen the proof of his Lord. It was thus that We diverted evil and indecency away from him. He was one of Our loyal servants.
    Surah Yusuf (Quran 12: 23-24)

    Shaytan himself has admited that he cannot misguide those Allah has chosen as His loyal servants.

    39. He (Shytan) said, "My Lord, since You have lured me away, I will glamorize for them on earth, and I will lure them all away."

    40. "Except for Your sincere servants among them."

    41. He (Allah) said, "This is a right way with Me."

    42. "Over My (loyal) servants you have no authority, except for the sinners who follow you (and ignore repentance and my remembrance)."

    Surah an-Hijr (Quran 15: 39-42)

    Neglecting Istighfar and delaying repentance after committing a sin, is of the things that make it difficult to avoid the sin. This is because, the effects of repeated sins with no istighfar nor repentance, get compounded in the heart, and thus the heart turns dark gradually until the effects of the sins turn into a Shaytan in the heart, which the main big Shaytan will use to beautify sins and bad habits to the heart of the servant--this will then make quitting the sin even more difficult.

    "... Satan made their conduct appear good to them, and diverted them from the path, so they are not guided."
    Surah an-Naml (Quran 27: 24)

    " Not at all. Their hearts have become corroded by what they used to earn."
    Surah al-Mutaffifin (Quran 83: 14)

    Finally, I'd like to leave you with these heart-touching verses from the Holy Quran below. Please take your time to contemplate much on them with your heart, in a seclusion with Allah Ta'ala. Repeat the same way from time to time, and whatever good you find in your heart is your gift from Allah Ta'ala, in-shaa-Allah--take it, and be grateful to Him.

    "Recite what is revealed to you of the Scripture (i.e. reading the Noble Quran through contemplation), and perform the prayer (daily obligatory salaats). The prayer prevents indecencies and evils. And the remembrance of Allah (i.e. doing dhikr, in addition to the recitation of the Quran, and the performing of daily salaats) is greater (i.e. better in preventing indecencies and evils). And Allah knows what you do."
    Surah al-'Ankabut (Quran 29: 45)

    133. And race towards forgiveness from your Lord, and a Garden as wide as the heavens and the earth, prepared for the righteous.

    134. Those who give in prosperity and adversity, and those who restrain anger, and those who forgive people. Allah loves the doers of good.

    135. And those who, when they commit an indecency or wrong themselves, remember Allah and ask forgiveness for their sins-and who forgives sins except Allah? And they do not persist in their wrongdoing while they know.

    136. Those-their reward is forgiveness from their Lord, and gardens beneath which rivers flow, abiding therein forever. How excellent is the reward of the workers.

    Surah Ali 'Imran (Quran 3: 133-136)

    Hope this helps, in-shaa-Allah, and Allah Ta'ala knows best.

    • May Allah reward you for taking the time to reply as it clearly shows it must have taken some time to give that answer.

      But please don't be offended ... On these matters isnt it best to leave it the Muftis?

      I must apologise if you are a Mufti or someone of Knowledge - I only intend the best for the OP. Jazak'Allah Khair.

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