Breaking the Ramadan fast with non-Muslims?

Someone asks this question: is it permitted for a Muslim to break the Ramadan fast (iftaar) with a non-Muslim? Here is the answer from Islam Q&A, which I find interesting:

Praise be to Allaah.

It is permissible to have iftaar with non-Muslims if there is a shar’i reason for doing so, such as calling them to the true religion, or softening their hearts towards Islam, etc, which are what is hoped for if they come and eat iftaar at the tables set up for communal iftaar, as happens in some countries. But if it is done just to be friendly towards them and enjoy their company, this is a dangerous matter, because the principle of al-wala’ wa’l-bara’ (befriending the believers and showing enmity towards the disbelievers) is one of the basic principles of Islam, and one of the most important duties of the believers. This principle is referred to in a number of verses in the Book of Allaah and ahaadeeth of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), for example:

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): [...] “O you who believe! Take not for Awliyaa’ (protectors or helpers or friends) disbelievers instead of believers. Do you wish to offer Allaah a manifest proof against yourselves?” [al-Nisa’ 4:144]

“O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as Awliyaa’ (friends, protectors, helpers), they are but Awliyaa’ of each other. And if any amongst you takes them (as Awliyaa’), then surely, he is one of them. Verily, Allaah guides not those people who are the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers and unjust)” [al-Maa'idah 5:51]

In other words, the answer is that genuine friendship with non-Muslims is forbidden. Muslims can ACT like they are friends with non-Muslims to get them to convert to Islam or to gain some benefit for Islam.

Thank God that many Muslims don't actually obey this rule. But it is difficult to get around the prohibition of having non-Muslim friends in the Quran, which is quite clear.


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