By resolution 42/112 of 7 December 1987, the General Assembly decided to observe the 26th of June as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking as an expression of its determination to strengthen action and cooperation to achieve the goal of an international society free of drug abuse. Supported each year by individuals, communities, and various organizations all over the world, this global observance aims to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society.

This day serves as a reminder of the global commitment to combating the menace of drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking, which have devastating consequences for individuals, families, and societies. 

From an Islamic perspective, particularly within the Shia tradition, the issue of drug abuse and illicit trafficking is addressed with utmost seriousness. The Quran and the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh&hp) and the Imams (AS) emphasize the importance of preserving one’s physical and mental well-being and maintaining a healthy and virtuous society.

The Quran explicitly prohibits the consumption of intoxicants, including drugs, as they are considered harmful and a means of causing harm to oneself and others. The verse states: “O you who have believed, indeed, intoxicants, gambling, [sacrificing on] stone alters [to other than Allah], and divining arrows are but defilement from the work of Satan, so avoid it that you may be successful” (Quran 5:90).

Furthermore, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh&hp) and the Imams have strongly condemned the use of mind-altering substances, emphasizing their detrimental effects on the individual’s physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. Imam Ali (AS) is reported to have said, “Intoxicants are the root of all evils and the source of all sins.”

The Islamic teachings also emphasize the importance of preserving one’s intellect and maintaining a clear state of mind, which is essential for fulfilling one’s religious obligations and responsibilities. Drug abuse and addiction can impair an individual’s ability to make rational decisions and lead to the neglect of moral and spiritual duties.

Moreover, the illicit trafficking of drugs is considered a grave sin in Islam, as it contributes to the spread of harm and corruption within society. The Quran and the teachings of the Imams stress the importance of upholding justice, promoting good, and preventing evil. Engaging in activities that facilitate the distribution and consumption of harmful substances is considered a violation of these principles.

In light of these teachings, Muslims, particularly Shia Muslims, are encouraged to actively participate in efforts to combat drug abuse and illicit trafficking. This can be achieved through various means, such as raising awareness, supporting rehabilitation programs, and promoting alternative livelihoods for those involved in the drug trade.

On this International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, it is crucial to reflect on the Islamic principles of preserving one’s well-being, upholding justice, and promoting the welfare of society. By adhering to these teachings and actively participating in efforts to combat drug abuse and illicit trafficking, individuals can contribute to creating a safer and more virtuous world for all.

Let us conclude this article with a question that was asked of Grand Ayatollah Sistani which he responded to: 
Question: The serious harm of narcotic drugs to the user or society in general (whether from being addicted to them or other [societal, familial, and ethical] harms) is well known. Therefore, the doctors and health care professionals are strongly opposing the misuse of drugs and the laws governing society are also strongly against it. So, what is the view of the noble Sharia on this matter? 

Answer: By considering the serious harm of narcotic drugs, it is forbidden to use them due to the great damage they cause. Based on obligatory precaution, it is compulsory to refrain from using them in any way [even if there is no harm], except for medical purposes and the like; in the latter case, it can be used only to the extent of need.


Leave a Comment: