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Ask a Muslim: Why can’t Muslims eat pork?

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By Naghmana Ahmed-Sherazi

Why can’t Muslims eat pork?

There is a very distinct verse in the Quran that states: “Forbidden to you (for food) are: dead meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which hath been invoked the name of other than Allah.” (Al-Qur’an 5:3)

In the book of Levictus it is stated: “And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be cloven footed, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcass shall ye not touch, they are unclean to you.” (Leviticus 11:7-8)

And in the book of Deuteronomy it is stated: “And the swine, because it divideth the hoof, yet cheweth not the cud, it is unclean unto you. Ye shall not eat of their flesh, nor touch their dead carcass.” (Deuteronomy 14:8)

A similar prohibition is repeated in the Bible in the book of Isaiah chapter 65 verses 2-5.

Since Islam is a derivative of both monotheistic religions that were revealed to Moses and Jesus, there are a lot of similarities in the doctrine.

Muslims in today’s world refrain from eating pork not only because of religious requirement, but also because of correlation between consumption of pork and many diseases. It is considered to be an unclean animal, a scavenger that feeds on dead things–therefore, in general it is considered to be unhealthy to eat pork. Eating pork exposes humans to various helminths, specifically the ‘pork tapeworm’ or the Taenia Solium, which is virulent enough to endanger any organ in the human body. This is the main reason why even though a Muslim may not practice certain aspects of Islam, generally they will still adhere to the edict and refrain from eating pork.

Naghmana Ahmed-Sherazi
Naghmana Ahmed-Sherazi
Naghmana Ahmed-Sherazi moved to Spokane about four years ago with her son. Coming from a huge bustling metropolis like Houston with its varied and diverse micro-cultural communities, she said it was interesting to see people's reactions when they met her or her son. She said she has so far loved living in Spokane with its four seasons and unique landscape. Originally from Karachi, Pakistan, she has had the good fortune of travelling since an early age and has had education on four different continents. She considers herself a global citizen.

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Sharan Denton
4 years ago

Hello, how’s it going? Just shared this post with a colleague, we had a good laugh.

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