Drinking alcohol is haram (forbidden), and this goes uncontested in Islam (as far as I know). I was mulling over this question last night (just as a thought exercise):

Question: Which is worse: "believing drinking alcohol is not haram and not drinking alcohol" or "believing drinking alcohol is haram, but drinking alcohol"?

I can see an argument either way:

  • In the first case, we have a disbelief in a consensus opinion, which could be interpreted as kafir. At the same time, this is just a belief; it could be a simple, honest mistake. They might even be unaware of the consensus.

  • In the second case, the person is actively participating in something that is haram, and they know/believe to be haram.

  • 1
    The first one. Kufr (the state of being kafir) is not established overnight or by one's mistakenly pronounced claim. Because that would just be a claim, not a belief. Kufr is established if one persists in his (wrongful) claim even after being presented the truth (in this case, consensus that drinking alcohol is haram).
    – ozbek
    Aug 31, 2016 at 1:54
  • 1
    It's not possible to just believe things are halal or haram without proof or unless it's famous public knowledge. Remaining ignorant isn't an excuse, they must seek the text to validate their assumptions. So the 1st of the two would be worse.
    – Abu Nooh
    Sep 1, 2016 at 12:49
  • According to the intention in the first case then I'd say nr 2 is worse.
    – Kilise
    May 5, 2017 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


The first one is worse.

Labelling haram as halal would be Shirk - which is unforgivable (if they are aware of what they are doing).

If you know something is haram but still doing it, you would just commit a sin. You can be forgived.

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