Bismillah ar-Rahman Ar-Raheem
Alhamdulilah! Allahumma sali ala muhammad wa ala ali muhammad!
Taken from ‘Discourses on Islamic way of Life’ By Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani hafidullah (Darul ishaat)
Taking Food while standing
Hazrat Anas radiallahu anha has narrated, saying: The Holy Prophet salalahu alayhi wa salam has forbidden to drink water, while standing. Hazrat Qatadah radiallahu anhu said to Hazrat Anas radiallahu anhu: What about eating while standing? The reply was: It is worse and more hateful.(Sahih muslim)
In other words, to eat while standing is more hateful than to drink standing.
On the basis of this Hadith some ulama have said thtat to drink while standing is only disgustful but to eat while standing is prohibited in the Shariah.
Avoid eating while standing
There are people who argue on the basis of a hadith of Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar Radiallahu anhu that it is lawful to eat while standing. Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar radiallahu anhu has said in this Hadith that during the time of the Holy Prophet salalahu alayhi wa salam they ate while walking and drank while standing. The people,therefore, ask why they are being forbidden to eat while standing when the Noble Companions radiallahu anhum were free to do so.
You have just now heard the Hadith of Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar Radiallahu anhu, saying: That it is worse and more hateful to eat while standing. In other words it is unlawful to eat while standing. This hadith refers to meals eaten regularly two, or three times daily. the other Hadith of Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar radiallahu anhu refers to small bits of eatables, like chocolates almonds and dates etc. which can be eaten while standing and walking. The system of eating while standing has become very popular in the feasts arranged now. This must be condemned and abolished, because this is not human. It is a beastly way of eating. my respected father described this way of eating as a form of ‘grazing’ and not as human eating; snatching the food from here and there. This is sheer incivility and also insulting to the guests. For Allah’s sake give up this way of eating. only a little care is needed to get rid of this beastly system.
Some people justify this by alleging that this ensures economy in expenditure. only a small sapce is needed and the heavy cost of furniture is saved. This is meaningless. What about the costly chairs arranged in the marriage hall and the decorative costly lights? In addition, huge amounts are wasted on useless customs, the preparation of video films and so many other sinful practices. Where is the idea of economy? The fact remains that all this is due to the craze of a blind following of fashion and nothing else.
Only a little resolution and courage are needed. Resolve today that you shall entertain your guests with food on dining chairs and table or on the ground furnished with clean sheets. irrespective of the costs involved. Once you have taken a firm decision to do away with this beastly way of eating and entertaining, Allah will help you in abolishing this inhuman style of feasting.
May Almighty Allah help us all in getting rid of this bad custom. Ameen!