Abu Juhafah رضي اللّه عنه said:

The Messenger of Allaah صلي الله عليه وسلم said:

“I do not eat whilst I am reclining.”


{ Imam al Bukhari in his Saheeh and Abu Dawud in his Sunnan }

The scholars differed as to what reclining meant.

Imam An Nawaawi رحمه اللّه commented:

What this means is:

I do not eat like one who wants to eat a great deal and sits comfortably; rather I sit like one who is going to get up quickly and I eat little.

{ Al Minhaaj Sharh Saheeh Muslim }

Al Haafiz Ibn Hajr رحمه اللّه commented:

There was a difference of opinion concerning the manner of reclining (referred to in the hadeeth). It was said that it refers to sitting in a comfortable and relaxed manner, no matter form it may take, or that it refers to reclining on one’s side, or that it refers to resting one’s left hand on the ground.

{ Fath al Baari Sharh al Bukhari 9/541}

Shaykh Ali al Qari رحمه اللّه commented:

It was narrated in ash-Shifa’ from some commentators that they interpreted sitting in a comfortable and relaxed manner to eat as referring to sitting cross-legged on a cushion, because this leads to eating a lot of food and makes one arrogant.

{ Al Mirqah Sharh Mishkaat }

*** And Allaah عزوجل knows best ***