If you were to apprise a smoker about the harmful effects of smoking and ask him when he plans to quit smoking, he would probably say: tomorrow or the day after, or simply, "later". A person who answers in this manner is not convinced in his heart of the prohibition of smoking in Islam and its harmful effects on his health. It is quite probable that he will continue to smoke and never stop on his own.
What is the solution then? Do we stop advising such a person until smoking leads him to destruction? Or do we allow them to try out "lesser harmful" alternatives like pipes, low-tar cigarettes and the like, thinking that these will be less harmful?
Contrary to popular belief, far from being less harmful, these alternatives lead to a greater intake of nicotine and harmful chemicals because smokers take a higher number of puffs per cigarette. They also inhale the smoke deeper and keep it longer in their lungs.
The only solution is to give up smoking immediately and forever, without further procrastination. The following are some helpful tips that will help you stop smoking:
• Remember the harmful effects of smoking and the fact that it is prohibited in Islam.
• Repent to your Lord sincerely and come back to your senses before smoking destroys your health and before death attacks you suddenly.
• Seek the help of Allah The Almighty, and supplicate to Him fervently that He helps you stop smoking.
• Establish your prayer because it prevents you from all that is evil and harmful.
• Fast regularly, because it is an advice from the Prophet, sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam, which strengthens determination, enhances good manners and enables one to fight one's desires.
• Recite the Quran, for it guides towards good morals; engage in the remembrance of Allah The Almighty frequently, you will feel tranquil and calm; seek refuge in Allah The Almighty from Satan, because it Satan who beautifies this sin for you.
• Remember the benefits of giving up smoking.
• Remember that whosoever gives up anything for the sake of Allah The Almighty, He will replace it with something better, such as feeling content with Allah The Almighty and loving Him.
• Remember the reward of giving up smoking, because the more difficult it is to give up a sin, the greater is its reward.
• Remember that by giving up smoking you save yourself from serious harm.
• Remember the sweetness of winning over your desires.
• Compare between the alleged "enjoyment" of smoking and the severe harm resulting from it.
• Be sincere and have strong determination.
Giving up smoking is quite difficult, especially in the beginning, but it is never difficult or impossible. With perseverance, this difficulty gradually fades away, until the smoker becomes accustomed to it. The Prophet, sallAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said: “He who strives to persevere, Allah will enable him to persevere”.
Imaam Ibn Al-Qayyim said,
‘Those who give up something for reasons other than for the sake of Allah find it difficult to give up what they are used to and have as a habit; but those who give something up sincerely for the sake of Allah, will find no difficulty except in the very beginning, because Allah will test him to see whether he is truthful or not; so if he perseveres in the beginning he will taste the sweetness after that’.
You should always remember that it is easier to persevere giving up smoking than it would be to persevere the harsh punishment in the Hereafter.
Be wary of despair; you might try to stop smoking more than one time and fail, or you might stop it for as while then return to it again. Don’t let this make you give up; keep trying until you succeed.
Stay away from bad company, or anything that reminds you of smoking. Avoid listening to other smokers who try to hinder your efforts, rely on Allah The Almighty, and challenge yourself to achieve your objective with His will.
Even if you feel that you are too weak to stop smoking immediately, take gradual steps with the help of doctors, psychotherapists, other righteous people and your own family and friends.