The Food and Drink of the People of Paradise
The people will have whatever food and drink they desire:
"Any fruit that they may choose, And the flesh of fowls that they desire" [56:20-21]
"...there will be there all that the souls could desire, all that the eyes could delight in.." [43:71]
Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) will permit them to take whatever they want of the good food and drink of Paradise:
"Eat and drink at ease for that which you have sent on before you in days past!" [69:24]
In Paradise there will be a sea of water, a sea of wine, a sea of milk and a sea of honey, and the rivers of Paradise will flow out of these seas. There will be also many springs in Paradise, and its people will drink from these seas, rivers and springs.
(i) The Wine of the People of Paradise
One of the drinks that Allaah will bestow on the people of Paradise will be wine. The wine of Paradise is free of all the troubles and problems that characterise the wine of this world, which makes people lose their minds, and causes headaches, stomach aches and other physical disorders, or which may have something wrong in the way it is made, or its colour, etc. But the wine of Paradise is free from all such faults; it is pure and beautiful:
"Round them will be passed a cup of pure wine; white, delicious to the drinkers. Neither will they have ghoul [any kind of hurt, abdominal pain, headache, etc] from that, nor will they suffer intoxication therefrom" [37:45-47]
Allaah described the beauty of its white colour, then explained that its drinker enjoy it very much, without is affecting their minds:
"..rivers of wine delicious to those who drink.." [47:15]
And they will never be adversely affected by drinking it:
"..nor will they suffer intoxication therefrom" [37:47]
Elsewhere in the Qur'aan, Allaah describes the wine of Paradise,
"They will be served by immortal boys, With cups and jugs, and a glass from the flowing wine, Wherefrom they will get neither any aching of the head, nor any intoxication" [56:17-19]
Commenting on this passage, Ibn Katheer said, "it does not cause their heads to ache or their minds to be fogged; it is pure, although it still contains the ingredients that make it a delight to the drinker. ad-Dahhaak narrated that Ibn 'Abbaas said, "Wine produces four things: drunkenness, headache, vomit and urine. Allaah (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Salaam) has mentioned the wine of Paradise, and He has purified it of all these things." [Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 6/514]
In another part of the Qur'aan, Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) says:
"They will be given to drink pure sealed wine, the last thereof will be the smell of musk.." [83:25-26]
This wine is sealed or covered, and at the end of it, the drinker will find the scent of musk.
(ii) The food and drink of the people of Paradise does not produce any impure excrement.
This does not only apply to the first group to enter Paradise, all those who enter will be similarly pure. Muslim reports from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allaah (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Salaam) said, "The first group of my ummah to enter Paradise will be as beautiful as the full moon and those that come after them will be like the brightest shining star, and those that follow them will be ranked according to their status. They will not defecate, urinate or blow their noses or spit." [Muslim in Kitaab al-Jannah, Baab awwal zumrah tadkhul al-Jannah, 4/2188, no. 2834]
(iii) Why Will the People of Paradise Eat and Drink and Comb their Hair?
If the people of Paradise are to abide there forever, and it is free form all discomfort, pain and sickness, if there is no hunger or thirst there, and no impurities or dirt, then why will the people of Paradise eat and drink, and wear perfume and comb their hair?
al-Qurtubee answered this question in at-Tadhkirah [p. 475, see also al-Fath, 6/325]: "The luxuries and clothing of the people of Paradise will not be for the purpose of warding off potential pains; they will not eat because of hunger or drink because of thirst, or wear perfume because of some offensive odour, because Paradise is a never-ending succession of delight and joy. Do you not remember the words of Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) to Aadam?
"Verily you have that you will never be hungry therein nor naked. And you suffer not from thirst therein nor from the sun's heat." [20:118-119]
The wisdom behind it [food and drink, etc] is so that Allaah will introduce Paradise to them in ways similar to the good things that they enjoyed on earth, but He will increase it in ways known only to Him."
(iv) The Vessels and Cups of the People of Paradise
The vessels from which the people of Paradise will eat and drink will be of gold and silver. Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) says:
"Trays of gold and cups will be passed round them.." [43:71] i.e. cups of gold.
And Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) says, "And amongst them, will be passed round vessels of silver and cups of crystal, crystal-clear, made of silver. They will determine the measure thereof according to their wishes." [76:15] i.e it will combine the purity of crystal with the whiteness of silver.
al-Bukhaari and Muslim reported from Abu Musaa al-Ash'ari that the Messenger of Allaah (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Salaam) said, "The believer in paradise will have a tent made of a hollowed out pearl.. and two gardens of silver, their vessels and everything in them, and two gardens of gold, their vessels and everything in them." [Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 3/86]
Among the vessels from which they will drink will be cups and jugs and glasses:
"They will be served by immortal boys, with cups, and jugs and a glass from the flowing wine." [56:17-18]
The Clothing, Jewellery and Incense-Burners Of the People of Paradise
The people of Paradise will wear the most luxurious clothes, amongst other things, garments of silk and bracelets of gold, silver and pearls. Allaah (Subhaanahu Wa Ta'ala) says:
"...wherein they will be adorned with bracelets of gold and pearls, and their garments will be of silk." [22:23]
"'Adn Paradise they will enter, therein will they be adorned with bracelets of gold and pearls, and their garments there will be of silk." [35:33]
"...They will be adorned with bracelets of silver, and their Rabb will give them a pure drink." [76:21]
Their clothes will be colourful, including garments of green silk and brocade:
"..They will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold, and they will wear green garments of fine silk and heavy brocade. They will recline therein on raised thrones. How good the recompense! How beautiful a couch to recline on." [18:31]
"Their garments will be of fine green silk, and gold embroidery. They will be adorned with bracelets of silver.." [76:21]
The Prophet (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Salaam) also told us that the people of Paradise will have combs of gold and silver, and that they will perfume themselves with 'Ud at-Teeb, even though the scent of musk will be emanating from their pure bodies. al-Bukhaari narrates from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Salaam) said of those who will enter Paradise:
"Their vessels will be of gold and silver, their combs will be of gold and the coals of their incense-burners will be of aloe-wood [Abul-Yaman said, "of 'Ud at-Teeb] and their sweat will be musk." [al-Bukhaari, Kitaab Bid' al-Khalq, Baab Maa Jaa'a fi Sifat al-Jannah wan-Naar, Fath al-Baari, 6/319]
Their jewellery will include crowns. at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Maajah report from al-Miqdaam ibn Ma'd Yakrib that among the honours bestowed upon the martyr will be: "..there will be placed upon his head a crown of dignity, one ruby of which is better than this world and all that is in it." [Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 3/358, no. 3834, Saheeh Muslim, saheeh]