Fatawa Library

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Q: If a person did not complete fasting the six days of Shawwal because he travelled, what should he do?

A: In voluntary fasting, it is up to him whether he wants to continue or stop. Fasting the six days of Shawwal can be done non-sequentially as well.

Q: A person was abroad for five years and he did not fast in this duration. When he came back home, he made up almost the five years. Any expiations required from him?

A: If he came back home, he is obliged only to fast the missing months.

Q: If a person swallowed his phlegm, will it break his fasting?

A: If it happened unintentionally, it will not break his fasting but if he swallowed deliberately, he should make up that day.

Q: If a person swallowed something other than food, like a pin or a tiny piece of paper, does it break his fasting?

A: Non-edible items that are swallowed break fasting just as eaten food does. Allah knows best.

What should a person do if he lied jokingly in Ramadhan?

A:Speaking falsely in serious or joking manner is unacceptable as it is one of the biggest sins. He should repent and make up the missing day.

Q: A person is originally from Al Dakhiliya Governorate but resides in Muscat. When Ramadhan comes, he does not fast because he is a traveler and he cannot fast in hot weather. Should he make up days of Ramadhan in winter?

A: If he settles in Muscat, he must not. He should expiate for each month he did not fast unless he is sick. In this case, he can break fasting but should make up the missing days later.

Q: A person has intention to break fasting as he is going to travel next day but the dawn comes before he leaves, should he fast or break?

A:  In both cases, he should make up the missing day as he already did not have any intention to fast that day.

Q:A person suffering from heart disease fasted 15 days of Ramadhan but the doctor did not allow him to fast the rest of the Holy Month. What should he do?

A:If he is expected to recover after a period of time, he should make up the missing days. If it has become a chronic illness, he should feed a poor person for each day.  

Q23: Can fasting be replaced by feeding in a will or testament so it can be executed?

A: Yes, it can be as 60 needy persons should be fed for each day he ordered to be fasted.

Q22: If someone broke his fasting on the first day of Ramadhan as he did not know that the crescent has been sighted the day before, is it permissible to fast that day?

  A22: He should make up for the missed fast day of Ramadhan, without controversy. The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: “Do not fast until you see the crescent and do not break your fast until you see it.” In fact, one cannot fast unless he observed the crescent of Ramadhan.

Q21: What are the conditions that must be met by the person who sights the new moon so that his testimony in that regard be valid?

A21: He should be sane, adult, religiously just, and his testimony should not be confuted by the actuality [in terms of time and direction the newmoon was allegedly sighted]. And Allah knows best

Q20: How is Eid prayer performed in the outweighing opinion? For we see variation in its performance between one country and another.

A20: Eid prayer is performed in different ways which are all permissible insha Allah. The practice here is that you make thirteen takbeeras, for which our companions have two ways of doing: the first opinion is that you make five takbeeras after ihram, five takbeeras after the second rak’a’s recitation, and three between bowing and prostration of the same rak’a. The other opinion is that you make six takbeeras after ihram and seven after the recitation of the second rak’a; nothing between bowing and prostration. I personally adopt this last way. And Allah knows best.

Q19: Is it permissible to give Zakat al Fitr to the poor sons and grandmothers?

A19: If the boys have come of age and live away independent of their fathers, there is no objection to giving them out of Zakat al Fitr or other kinds of zakat. The same applies to a grandmother if she is independent and supporting her was not incumbent on him. Otherwise, if these are his dependents, it is not right to give zakat to them; for one’s zakat should not be paid to one’s dependents. And Allah knows best.

Q18: What is meant by “Zakat Al Abdan” (zakat on individual persons’ bodies) and how should it be counted, and when and to whom is it distributed?

A18: Zakat Al Abdan — is zakat that should be paid for each individual in the family, not on forms of wealth. A man who has a family which he supports and maintains is obligated to pay — for himself and each of his dependents a measure (sa’) of food to poor Muslims. The time of giving this food as an act of worship begins when the sun of the last day of Ramadhan sets and goes on until people go out for the prayer place on the Fast-breaking Feast day. Its time ends the moment people stand to perform …

Q16: What is the rule regarding use of eye drops during the daytime of Ramadhan; does it affect the fast?

A16: Fast is affected by what reaches the gut; anything that does not reach the gut has no effect on fast. However, it is known that the eye drains into the throat; therefore use of eye drops should be confined to cases of constraint and to the extent that is necessary, ie to the extent that the eye absorbs the drop completely and nothing of it is left to reach the throat. Such precaution should be taken, and the use should only be in cases of constraint not in cases of choice; for what is allowed in cases of constraint …

Q15: What should I do regarding my mother who neither prayed nor fasted during Ramadhan because of the seriousness of her illness and died without leaving any will for she had been in a coma during the last days of her life?

A16: In terms of obligation, you are not obligated to do anything with regard to this; but in terms of application of discretion, it is desirable that you feed one poor person for each day she did not fast while being sane and conscious; as for the days during which she was comatose, she was exempted from all obligations. You should also give some charity and make atonement on her behalf as far as you can afford. And Allah knows best

Q14: An old sick man who had been hospitalised did not fast the last two Ramadhans; he cannot feed because he is poor; what must he do?

A15: If he can neither fast nor feed, Allah has more right to forgive him, for Allah does not burden any soul beyond its capacity. And Allah knows best.

Q13: What should a man suffering from a heart disease do if he was forbidden to fast by the doctor after having fasted 15 days?

A13: He is not obligated to fast in this case; if he is hoping to recover, he shall make up the missed days after recovering; otherwise he should feed a poor person for each day. And Allah knows best.

Q12: What about a person who suffers from kidney failure and has to undergo dialysis twice a week and each dialysis takes four hours; what should he do with regard to fasting if he is unable to fast?

A12: If he finds it necessary to break his fast, he may do so and then make up the un-fasted days afterwards. But if dialysis itself entails entrance of something into his gut from outside, then by itself it invalidates the fast. And Allah knows best.

Q11: A man has to make up the fast of several missed days of Ramadhan and he cannot fast those days successively; what should he do?

A11: He has to fast those days even intermittently if he cannot fast them successively. And Allah knows best.

Q10: What is the ruling about a person’s fasting if something other than food reaches his gut such as a swallowed pin or piece of paper?

A10: The majority of scholars are of the opinion that an inedible stuff invalidates a fast just like edible stuff, whether it is iron, or hair, or skin or paper or anything else. And Allah knows best.

Q9: Is there any objection to exchanging fasting for feeding in a will so that it can be executed?

A10: No objection to exchanging fasting for feeding, which is feeding one poor person for each day the fasting of which is specified in the will. And Allah knows best.

Q8: A man was away from his home country for years and did not fast while abroad, then returned to his country and fasted almost all the days he missed; does he also have to atone?

  A9: Nothing is incumbent on a traveller who returns to his country and did not fast during his travel apart from making up for the days he did not fast. And Allah knows best.

Q7: One who intended from night to break fasting because he planned to travel, but dawn came upon him before his departure; should he fast or should he break his fasting?

A7: He must compensate for that day anyway, for no fasting is valid for one who did not intend from night to fast, and this person intended from night not to fast. As regards eating after his departure, opinions differ; the outweighing opinion is that it is permissible, whereas the more precautionary one is to abstain  

Q6: Does vomiting invalidate a fast?

A6: Vomiting does not invalidate a fast unless part of the vomited matter is taken back into the stomach while the person is able to spit it out; this ruling is with regard to the person who could not help but vomit. As for a person who vomits intentionally, opinions differ as to whether his fast is invalidated or not. And Allah knows best.

Q5: What is the right opinion as to the number of taraweeh rak’as? And what is preferable in regard to Isha sunna prayer: to be prayed in two or four rak’as?

A5: The Prophet — pbuh — prayed the Ramadhan night prayer — subsequently known as taraweeh — in eight rak’as. Then the two Rightly Guided Prophet’s Successors (Caliphs) added more rak’as. This addition by these Caliphs — may Allah be pleased with them — is a proof that it is not limited to any number.

Q4: What does one have to do if he lied jokingly during the daytime in Ramadhan?

A4: Telling a lie is one of the major sins, whether one is joking or serious, for there is a severe threat against it; also there is a threat against the very practice of telling a lie jokingly; the Prophet (pbuh) said; “Woe to him who tells lies to people so as to make them laugh, woe to him, woe to him.” Any person who does this has to repeat his fast of that day, and has to repent to Allah of what he has done; but he does not have to atone for this because atonement, like major penalties …

Q3: In many American states as well as in European countries it is mostly difficult or even impossible to catch sight of the new moon of Ramadhan or Shawwal. However, the scientific progress in these countries enables knowing the appearance of new moon in an accurate way by calculations. Is it permissible to rely on their calculations? Further, is it permissible to seek the help of observatories supervised by non-Muslims, bearing in mind that their opinion on these matters is most probably correct?

A3: Basically beginning and breaking of the fast are both subject to either sighting the new moon or completing the term of the month as 30 days; narrations to that effect are numerous and this has been adopted by both the predecessors and the successors. However, when spotting the new moon with the naked eye becomes difficult, where clear skies are rare and it is mostly foggy and cloudy, there is no objection to seeking the help of reliable observatories, on condition that they be in the hands of Muslims whose decision is binding with regard to the start and …

Q2: If a person travels from his home country to another where the daybreak is earlier, how should he break his fast?

A2: A person who leaves one country to another while fasting and there is difference between the two countries in sunrise and sunset, may not break his fast except at sunset in the country to which he has moved, no matter whether sunrise and sunset there come earlier or later. And Allah knows best.  

Q.1 Someone slept before Esha prayer in Ramdhan, and he waked up only after the sunrise to discover that there is Janabaha in his clothes; what should he do?

A.1. He should go wash immediately. This is because the prophet has said that whoever wakes up with Janaba is not fasting. Once he is done washing, he should pray the Esha and Fajer prayer even if it was after the sunrise, and he doesn’t have to repeat the day because he didn’t do it with intention, and Allah knows better.