March 2016: Page 1, 2, 3, 4

Jumada II  1437

Volume 32 No 3

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Submitters Perspective

Monthly Bulletin of the International Community of Submitters Published by Masjid Tucson

Why people use drugs

The use of drugs to alter consciousness is nothing new. Satan has made this a part of human life throughout history (5:90). Alcohol has always been the most commonly used drug because of the ease in producing it by fermentation. In many cultures, the consumption of drugs and alcohol has been associated with one’s entrance into the adult social world.

The Arabic word “khamr” (intoxicant) is from the root word “khamara” which means “to cover” or obscure. Contrary to what many people think, drugs cloud and cover the mind rather than open it up. The so-called high that people think they experience when intoxicated is actually a state of disorientation and looseness portrayed as pleasure. The devil not only leads one to take intoxicants, but continues to entice the intoxicated person to do things that they would refrain from when sober or oriented.

O you who believe, intoxicants and gambling, and the altars of idols, and the games of chance are abominations of the devil; you shall avoid them, that you may succeed. The devil wants to provoke animosity and hatred among you through intoxicants and gambling, and to distract you from remembering God; and from observing the Contact Prayers (Salat). Will you then refrain? (5:90-91).


Generally speaking, there are three reasons why people use drugs. The first (prescription drugs) is for therapeutic reasons with things such as weight loss, anxiety or insomnia. (This article does not discuss medical use of substances.) The next reason is for recreational use, to get a feeling of euphoria, for insight to relieve suffering. And thirdly, people use drugs because of addiction.

In addition to the need to feel good and overcome anxieties, peer acceptance and approval are critical factors behind drug consumption and addiction. Most people have been socialized to be overly-dependent on someone or something in the material world to make them happy. Many people also turn to intoxicants to make them happy. There is a myth that drugs allow an individual to imagine being what he or she wants to be free of inhibitions, worries, and tension. Drugs are also sought as a means toward inner-fulfillment; many people are led to believe that chemical substances and drugs are a cure-all for their negative feelings.

Despite widespread use and acceptance of so-called “legal drugs” like alcohol, there can be no compromise regarding their prohibition by God. God knows us better than we know ourselves.

God certainly knows what can make us really happy, and He knows what is dangerous to us.

Intoxicants and Gambling Prohibited

They ask you about intoxicants and gambling: say, “In them there is a gross sin, and some benefits for the people. But their sinfulness far outweighs their benefit.” ... (2:219)

There are four groups of depressants: alcohol, benzodiazepines, opiates, and barbiturates.

Alcohol: alcohol is also known as ethanol and produces what we call a biphasic effect. It produces stimulation, then it produces depression. Alcohol affects all the different components of the cell level system. Alcohol produces relaxation, sleeplessness, and reduced inhibitions which means you are likely to do things that you wouldn't have before. You will have reduced judgment, inability to make decisions, impaired concentration, and slower reflexes.

Benzodiazepine: these drugs are known as Zanax, Valium, Clonipin, and other drugs used for reducing anxiety or panic. They increase the inhibitory receptor function in the brain; they calm down the brain.

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