Fatwa: # 38819
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Country: Sweden
Date: 29th July 2017


Using benzyl and ethyl alcohol externally and internally


Assalaamualaykum I wanted to ask:
Can one use products using benzyl/ethyl alcohol externally or internally? will it be taqwa to abstain


In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh..

-Benzyl alcohol[i] (BnOH) is an aromatic colorless liquid alcohol with the formula C6H5CH2OH produced naturally by many plants and is commonly found in fruits and teas. It is prepared by the hydrolysis of benzyl chloride using sodium hydroxide. This alcohol is non edible.

-Ethyl alcohol[ii], also called alcohol, ethanol and drinking alcohol, is the principal type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages. It is a volatile, flammable, colorless liquid with a slight characteristic odor. Its chemical formula is C2H6O, which can be written also as CH3-CH2-OH or C2H5-OH (an ethyl group linked to a hydroxyl group), and is often abbreviated as EtOH. Ethanol is mostly produced by the fermentation of sugars by yeasts, or by petrochemical processes. It is an addictive psychoactive drug (indeed one of the oldest and most common recreational drugs), causing a characteristic intoxication ("drunkenness") and neurotoxicity when consumed in sufficient quantities.


In consideration of the above, benzyl alcohol is permissible for external use. The synthetic benzyl alcohol (E1519)[iii] used in food items is also permissible and fit for consumption.


As far as ethyl alcohol is concerned, it depends on its source[iv]. If it is derived from grapes or dates[v], then it is not permissible. However, if it is derived from other sources besides dates or grapes, then it will be permissible to consume[vi] provided that it does not intoxicate. As such, a general ruling cannot be given on all products containing ethyl alcohol. Furthermore, other ingredients have to be considered as well for the permissibility of its consumption.


And Allaah Ta’aala Knows Best

Muajul I. Chowdhury


Student Darul Iftaa

New York, USA


Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.


[v] Please refer to the following link for details regarding the specification: http://askimam.org/public/question_detail/31176


[vi]  (تكملة الفتح الملهم، ج ٣، ص ٦٠٨، مكتبة دار العلوم كراتشي الطبع الأولى)

وَأَمَّا غَيْرُ الْأَشْرِبَةِ الْأَرْبَعَةِ، فَلَيْسَتْ نَجِسَةٌ عِنْدَ الْإِمَامِ أَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ رَحِمَهُ اللهُ تَعَاليَ.

وبهذا يتبين حُكْمُ الكحول المسكرة التي عمّت بها البلوي اليوم، فإنها تُستعمَل في كثير من الأدوية والعطور والمركبات الأخري، فإنها إن اتخذت من العنب أو التمر فلا سبيل إلى حِلّتها أو طهارتها، وإن اتخذت من غيرهما فالأمر فيها سهلٌ علي مذهب أبي حنيفة رحمه الله تعالي، ولا يحرم استعمالها للتداوي أو لأغراض مباحة أخري ما لم تبلغ حد الإسكار، لأنها إنما تستعمل مركبة مع المواد الأخري، ولا يُحكم بنجاستها أخذاً بقول أبي حنيفة رحمه الله.

و إن معظم الكحول التي تُستعمَل اليوم في الأدوية والعطور وغيرها لا تتخذ من العنب أو التمر، إنما تتخذ من الحبوب أو القشور أو البترول وغيره، كما ذكرنا في باب بيع الخمر من كتاب البيوع، وحينئذ هناك فسحةٌ في الأخذ بقول أبي حنيفة عند عموم البلوي، والله سبحانه أعلم.


(الفتاوي الهندية 5/414)

وَأَمَّا الْأَشْرِبَةُ الْمُتَّخَذَةُ مِنْ الشَّعِيرِ أَوْ الذُّرَةِ أَوْ التُّفَّاحِ أَوْ الْعَسَلِ إذَا اشْتَدَّ، وَهُوَ مَطْبُوخٌ أَوْ غَيْرُ مَطْبُوخٍ فَإِنَّهُ يَجُوزُ شُرْبُهُ مَا دُونَ السَّكَرِ عِنْدَ أَبِي حَنِيفَةَ وَأَبِي يُوسُفَ - رَحِمَهُمَا اللَّهُ تَعَالَى - وَعِنْدَ مُحَمَّدٍ - رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى - حَرَامٌ شُرْبُهُ قَالَ الْفَقِيهِ: وَبِهِ نَأْخُذُ كَذَا فِي الْخُلَاصَةِ فَإِنْ سَكِرَ مِنْ هَذِهِ الْأَشْرِبَةِ فَالسَّكَرُ وَالْقَدَحُ الْمُسْكِرُ حَرَامٌ بِالْإِجْمَاعِ وَاخْتَلَفُوا فِي وُجُوبِ الْحَدِّ إذَا سَكِرَ قَالَ الْفَقِيهِ أَبُو جَعْفَرٍ - رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى -: لَا يُحَدُّ فِيمَا لَيْسَ مِنْ أَصْلِ الْخَمْرِ، وَهُوَ التَّمْرُ وَالْعِنَبُ كَمَا لَا يُحَدُّ مِنْ الْبَنْجِ وَلَبَنِ الرِّمَاكِ، وَهَكَذَا ذَكَرَ شَمْسُ الْأَئِمَّةِ السَّرَخْسِيُّ - رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى - وَقَالَ بَعْضُهُمْ: يُحَدُّ، وَقِيلَ: هُوَ قَوْلُ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ زِيَادٍ كَذَا فِي فَتَاوَى قَاضِي خَانْ.


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