Hadith on Food: Mindful Eating and Cleanliness

📖Sahih Muslim 2034
Anas reported that when Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) ate food he licked his three fingers, and he said: When any one of you drops a mouthful he should remove anything filthy from it and then eat it, and should not leave it for the Satan. He also commanded us that we should wipe the dish saying: You do not know in what portion of your food the blessing lies.

From this hadith, we can derive the following lessons that are relevant today:

  1. Mindful eating: The Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) demonstrated the practice of being conscious and attentive while eating. By licking his fingers, he showed gratitude for the food and utilized it fully, not wasting any portion.
  2. Avoiding waste: The Prophet (ﷺ) advised against leaving any dropped food without cleaning it properly. This highlights the importance of not being wasteful and making the most of the blessings we have.
  3. Hygiene and cleanliness: The Prophet (ﷺ) emphasized the removal of anything unclean or dirty from the dropped food before consuming it. This teaches us the significance of maintaining hygiene and cleanliness while eating.
  4. Resisting Satan’s influence: The Prophet (ﷺ) advised against leaving the dropped food for Satan, signifying the importance of not succumbing to wastefulness or temptations that may lead to unnecessary extravagance.
  5. Gratitude and appreciation: The Prophet (ﷺ) reminded his companions to recognize and appreciate the blessings in their food. By wiping the dish, he encouraged them to acknowledge that blessings can be found in various parts of the meal.
  6. Avoiding excess and greed: The Prophet (ﷺ) encouraged moderation and not leaving any excessive amount of food. This highlights the importance of self-control, gratitude, and being mindful of our consumption.
  7. Spiritual dimension of eating: This hadith teaches us that eating is not merely a physical act but also carries spiritual significance. It reminds us to be conscious of our actions and intentions while nourishing our bodies.
  8. Taking care of one’s health: The emphasis on cleanliness and hygiene during eating reflects the Islamic teachings on maintaining good health and well-being.
  9. Value of every morsel: This hadith teaches us to value and appreciate every morsel of food, recognizing the blessings and sustenance it provides.
  10. Environmental consciousness: The avoidance of waste and practicing mindfulness in eating aligns with the importance of being environmentally conscious and reducing our ecological footprint.

In summary, this hadith reminds us of the importance of mindfulness, gratitude, cleanliness, avoiding waste, and practicing moderation in our eating habits. It underscores the connection between physical and spiritual well-being and encourages us to approach our meals with care and appreciation.