Assalamualaikum SS Dato’ Seri Mufti. Is there a hadith that restricts someone from drinking water in one breath?
Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
Islam is a perfect religion where it encompasses all aspects of humans’ lives from the smallest of things to the biggest of things. Furthermore, the Prophet PBUH himself is a very special human for he is responsible to teach his ummah everything that was revealed to him.
Referring back to the question asked, here we include a sahih hadith from Imam Muslim explaining the manners and etiquettes of drinking water, although there are numerous other hadiths that describe this matter. Some of them are:
- From Anas bin Malik RA, he said:
كَانَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَتَنَفَّسُ فِي الشَّرَابِ ثَلَاثًا، وَيَقُولُ: إِنَّهُ أَرْوَى وَأَبْرَأُ وَأَمْرَأُ، قَالَ أَنَسٌ: فَأَنَا أَتَنَفَّسُ فِي الشَّرَابِ ثَلَاثًا
“Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) breathed three times (outside the vessel) in the course of a drink and said: It is more thirst-quenching, healthier and more wholesome. Anas said: So, I also breathe three times in the course of a drink.”
Sahih Muslim (2028)
Imam al-Nawawi placed the above hadith under the chapter that it is sunnah to breathe outside of the vessel and it is makruh (undesirable) to breath inside a vessel. Moreover, this hadith means that by practising the actions of the Prophet PBUH it will protect us from thirst and diseases resulting from drinking in one breath. (See al-Minhaj Syarah Sahih Muslim, 198-199/13)
As for the ruling of drinking in one breath, it is not something that is prohibited, for the above hadith did not convey any prohibition regarding drinking in one breath. Imam al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar cited the opinion of Caliph Umar bin Abdul Aziz:
إِنَّمَا نَهَى عَنِ التَّنَفُّسِ دَاخِلَ الْإِنَاءِ فَأَمَّا مَنْ لَمْ يَتَنَفَّسْ فَإِنْ شَاءَ فَلْيَشْرَبْ بِنَفَسٍ وَاحِدٍ
“Indeed, the restriction is from breathing inside the vessel while drinking. As for someone who does not breath (inside the vessel), then he can drink in one breath if he wishes to.” (See Fath al-Bari, 93/10)
Furthermore, there is wisdom behind the restriction, as stated by Imam al-Qurthubi:
النَّهْيِ عَنِ التَّنَفُّسِ فِي الْإِنَاءِ لِئَلَّا يُتَقَذَّرَ بِهِ مِنْ بُزَاقٍ أَوْ رَائِحَةٍ كَرِيهَةٍ تَتَعَلَّقُ بِالْمَاءِ
“The restriction of breathing inside a vessel while drinking is to prevent the vessel and water inside of it from being polluted with saliva or any foul smell.” (See Fath al-Bari, 94/10)
Moreover, there are scientific researches that prove to breathe inside the vessel while drinking is a bad habit and could lead to health problems.
As a conclusion, we as Muslims should obey and uphold everything that is commanded by the Prophet PBUH, for it is what has been sanctioned in our religion. May Allah SWT give us the strength to practise the sunnah of the Prophet PBUH and protect us from bad deeds which are frown upon by Allah SWT and His Messenger. Amin.