If a friend gives me food because it’s his birthday, is it permissible to eat such food?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

Assalamu alaykum,

If a friend gives me food because it’s his birthday, is it permissible to eat such food?


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

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

It is imperative to understand that as Muslims our salvation lies in the adherence to each and every aspect of Deen and by gaining the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala.

The history of celebrating birthday traces back to the beliefs of the pagans. As Muslims, we are averse to celebrating birthdays and anything related to that, including eating birthday foods and cakes.[1] You should wisely communicate to the person regarding the Islamic perspective of birthdays. In doing so, take into consideration the nature of the person. When presenting the correct perspective of Islam to anyone, the aim should not merely be to inform the person. Rather, the aim should be to make the information as acceptable to him so that he understands the wisdom of Islam and be able to practice on Islam whole heartedly. To achieve that, one must be diligent in conveying anything of Islam to others.

In the enquired case, while you should avoid eating the birthday food, it is important that you conduct yourself in a responsible way as explained above. Refer to Fatwa #23135 and 19924.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Abdullah Syed Sajid

Student Darul Iftaa
Houston, TX, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.


 [1] آپ کے مسائل اور انکا حل (جلد 2/ ص 518)  

فتاوى محموديہ (جلد 5/ ص 394)

عصر حاضر کے پيچيدہ مسائل اور انکا حل (جلد 1/ ص 99 – 113)

فتاوى عباد الرحمن (جلد 1/ ص 198)

فتاوى قاسميه (جلد 3/ ص 279)