Treatment of Gluttony
By: Sayyid Mahdi as-Sadr
Gluttony is the opposite of chastity. It stands for the excessive desires for food and sex. It is a mean tendency indicating self-feebleness, greedy nature, and slavery of instincts.
Amirul-Mu'minin (a) said: “He who wants to survive, yet no one will survive forever, should ease his back from the burdens of debts-, have the food as early as possible, and reduce copulation with women1.”
Once, Amirul-Mu'minin (a) ate some dates, drank water, and then beat on his stomach with his hand and said: “Away with him who lets his stomach cause him to be in Hell.” He then recited the poetic verse: Whenever you respond to the desires of your stomach and genitals, they both will give nothing but the extreme dispraise2.
Imam as-Sadiq (a) said: “Gluttony is the source of every malady except fever, which appears to the body3.”
“The sated stomach overdoes4.”
“Allah hates the overeating5.”
Abu al-Hasan (a) said: “If people have moderate food, their bodies will be healthy6.”
Disadvantages of Gluttony
It is not unacceptable to say that gluttony, charms of the falsities of life, and attraction of luxury and lavish expenditure have been the main elements of retardation. All these elements have taken the nations into corruption. Overeating, for example, has many bad results. Modern medicine has proved that most of the diseases, curls, lines on the skins that deform the attractive lineaments of men and women, accumulation of fats, deepness of eyes, exhausting powers, and ailed mentalities the reason of all these defects is the continuous gluttony and the fatty foods. It has been also proved that overeating exhausts the stomach and creates various sorts of healthy troubles, such as arteriosclerosis, angina pectoris, hypertension, and diabetes.
The sexual gluttony also causes similar defects, such as impotence of the public health, disappearance of nervous power, and vanishing of vitality.
Treatment of Gluttony
• It is necessary for the overeater to keep in mind the advantages of chastity and ponder over the disadvantages of gluttony.
• It is necessary for the overeater to try his best to train himself on moderate food. The protective and remedial constitution of health is the moderation of food and the avoidance of overeating. This constitution is summarized in the holy Verse: “Eat and drink but do not be excessive.” (7:31)
The treatment of the sexual gluttony is as follows:
• Keeping in mind the dangers of sexual excess and moral and material corruptions.
• Striving the simulative of sexual desires, such as looking at the beauties of women, mixing of the sexes, excessive sexual imagination, and daydreams.
1. Quoted from Bihar ul-Anwar; vol. 14 page 545 (as quoted from Tibb ul-Ayimma).
2. Quoted from Safinat ul-Bihar; vol. 1 page 27.
3. Quoted from al-Wafi; part 11 page 67 (as quoted from al- Kafi).
4. Quoted from al-Wafi; part 11 page 67 (as quoted from al-Faqih).
5. Quoted from al-Wafi; part 11 page 67 (as quoted from al- Kafi).
6. Quoted from Bihar ul-Anwar; 14/876 (as quoted from al- Barqi’s al-Mahasin).