A disciple ordered by a shaykh not to fast in Ramadaan without a valid legal excuse

Question: What is the ruling on a disciple whose shaykh ordered him not to fast in Ramadaan, though he is all fit and has no valid legal excuse to break the Fast? The disciple thinks that his shaykh will save him from Allaah’s Punishment, and that he is capable of atoning for his sin. What does Islaamic law say about abandoning the obligation of fasting? Benefit us, may Allaah reward you greatly.

Answer: It is prohibited to obey a person who directs towards disobeying Allaah, whether they happen to be a shaykh or anybody else. This is based on the Hadeeth in which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is reported to have said… read more here.

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Breaking Fast on some days with no valid legal excuse

Question: Seven years ago, when I was about sixteen or seventeen years old, I used to fast in Ramadaan. But, I remember that I had broken my Fast on some days with no valid legal excuse. Thereupon, I regularly observe the Fast in the whole month of Ramadaan. What is the ruling on the days of fast I had missed?

Answer: You are obliged to make up for the days that you did not fast with no valid legal excuse. You must also turn to Allaah in repentance and ask Him to forgive your sin. You are also required to feed a Miskeen (needy person) for each day you had missed, because you delayed making up for the days you missed until some time later… read more here.

Making up for the Fast abandoned without a legal excuse

Question: There is a man who, for about ten years, regularly kept the fast of Ramadaan but deliberately broke the Fast for some days without a legal excuse. However, a few years ago, he repented of this sin to Allaah. What should he do now regarding the years in which he did not fast some days of Ramadaan, keeping into consideration that he had not made up for these days or counted the days which he missed fasting? It is noteworthy that he regretted having done these sins.

Answer: It is incumbent upon this person to do his best to make up for the days when he deliberately and inexcusably broke the Fast. Thus, he should fast the number of days which he is most sure he had missed in fasting. There is no prohibition in fasting these days separately… read more here.

Is Sawm observed by a person abandoning Salaah considered valid?

Question: Some people observe Sawm (Fast) during Ramadaan, but they do not offer Salaah (Prayer). Will their Sawm be accepted by Allaah?

Answer: Allaah does not accept the Sawm of the people who abandon offering Salaah unless they turn to Allaah in repentance and start performing Salaah again. This is based on the Hadeeth in which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: What stands between a Muslim and disbelief is his abandonment of Prayer. Allaah does not accept any good deed by the Kaafir (disbeliever)… read more here.

The Salaah abandoned intentionally or performed without ritual purity

Question: When I was a teenager, I regrettably neglected some Prayers while offering some other Prayers without ritual purity. However, my negligence of Prayer was not due to my denial of it as a religious obligation, but it was due to laziness and bad company. Moreover, I did not fast some days during Ramadaan.

Now, I have sincerely repented of this sin and regretted what Ihad done. My heart is now determined not to go back to my previous sins. Does sincere repentance obliterate the sins committed, or do I have to make up for the missed Prayers and fast days, taking into consideration that I do not know the number of Prayers which I missed nor the number of days which I did not fast?

Answer: It is an obligation upon the questioner to be truthful and sincere in his repentance of the sins he has committed, and to continue regularly offering Prayers and observe Fast in Ramadaan. On the other hand, the questioner is not obligated to make up for the missed Prayers or the missed days of Fast. According to the more preponderant of two opinions of Muslim scholars, whoever abandons prayers intentionally has committed a major disbelief… read more here.

The night spent in seeking Allaah’s Pleasure by performing Taraaaweeeh along with drinking lawful & unlawful drinks

Question: During Ramadaan some people are in the habit of gathering together from the time of Iftaar (breaking the Fast) until the time of Suhoor (pre-dawn meal before the Fast). They hire someone to recite the Noble Qur’aan for them and lead them in the `Ishaa (Night) Prayer and Taraaaweeeh (special supererogatory night Prayer in Ramadaan). During the break, they have some drinks like tea and smoke the water pipe. Even the Imaam (the one who leads congregational Prayer) smokes cigarettes and makes amulets, which people believe to cure diseases. Moreover, they make Khatmah (one complete reading of the entire Noble Qur’aan) in Ramadaan and dedicate its reward to the dead. They describe this as a night spent in seeking the Pleasure of Allaah (Exalted be He). Furthermore, when a person dies, they hold a large marquee where people gather to listen to Noble Qur’an recitation and smoke cigarettes. What is the ruling on that?

Answer: It is obligatory to observe fasting during the blessed month of Ramadaan. It is also desirable to offer Taraaaweeeh Prayer at night. This was the regular practice of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his Sahaabah (Companions). One must not follow acts of Bid`ahs (innovations in religion) which came to be practiced to Islaam after the demise of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his Sahaabah… read more here.

Opening a restaurant during the daytime in Ramadaan to serve meals to non-Muslims

Question: First, the Company where we work opens its restaurant during the daytime in Ramadaan to serve meals to non-Muslim employees. The evil consequences of such violation led some weak Muslims to break their Sawm (Fast) and share food with the non-Muslim. This happened last year, and the Committee for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (CPVPV) has been notified about a case that was filed against a Muslim who deliberately broke his fast in the above-mentioned restaurant during Ramadaan without a valid excuse.

Second: The workers at the restaurant are not permitted to offer the Thuhr (Noon) Prayer in congregation at the nearby Masjid (mosque) because they have to serve lunch for non-Muslims at that time. Therefore, they become busy preparing food in the restaurant for non-Muslims.

Third: We are extremely offended by the smell of food coming from the restaurant as we pray in the adjacent Masjid.

Fourth: All Sabic Companies, except ours, give permission to their non-Muslim employees to go home to have lunch. Our company is the only one that opens its restaurant during the daytime in Ramadaan.

Fifth: The behavior of our Company stands as a blatant violation of the directions of our Muslim rulers, may Allaah safeguard them. They expressively warned against this violation through all forms of media.

We ask Allaah (Glorified and Exalted be He) to help you find a solution to this problem. At least, we wish to help our Muslim brothers who work in this restaurant during the daytime in Ramadaan to be allowed to offer the Thuhr Prayer at its appointed time. As I have explained above, at the time of Thuhr Prayer, they are obliged to prepare lunch for non-Muslims, and hence can not offer the Prayer. May Allaah guide you to that which is right and most pleasing to Him!

Answer: It is not permissible to open the restaurant during the daytime in Ramadaan to prepare food for non-Muslims. This is because doing so may give rise to indulgence in grave prohibitions, such as assisting them in committing what Allaah (Exalted be He) has prohibited… read more here.

Ruling on holding a collective Iftaar gathering

Question: I heard from some Muslim brothers that the collective Iftaar (breaking the Fast), whether during the Month of Ramadaan or during a voluntary fasting, is an act of Bid`ah (innovation in religion). Is this true?

Answer: There is no harm in having collective Iftaar during Ramadaan or in any other month, as long as such a gathering is not perceived as a form of worship. Allaah (Exalted be He) said: No sin on you whether you eat together or apart. However, if it is feared that the collective Iftaar during voluntary fasting might include showing off and might be seen as an act of distinguishing the fasting people from those who are not fasting, then Iftaar in this way is reprehensible… read more here.

Which categories of fasting persons one gets rewarded for offering them Iftaar

Question: Which categories of fasting persons did the Prophet (peace be upon him) encourage offering them Iftaar (breaking the Fast) meal? Are they the poor, strangers, or guests whom we invite to have Iftaar mealat our home including family members and relatives? Are we rewarded for serving Iftaar to fasting persons to whom we extend a special invitation during Ramadaan?

Answer: It is authentically reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Anyone who offers a fasting person something to break their Sawm will earn the same reward as them, without diminishing in the slightest the reward of the one fasting. (Related by Al-Tirmithee)... read more here.

Desirability of breaking fast by eating dates and resuming Iftaar after offering the Maghrib salaah

Question: What are the Islaamic etiquettes one should follow when breaking the Fast? Many people take long time in eating until the time of Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer is over. They claim that Salaah (Prayer) should be delayed once the food is served. Is this claim true? What should one do when breaking the Fast? Does one have some dates first, then resume the Iftaar (breaking the Fast) after offering Salaah, or should one finish his Iftaar first and then offer Salaah?

Answer: The Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet) is that the fasting person should break their Fast once they are sure that the sun has set. This is based on the Hadeeth in which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said… read more here.

Is it permissible for us to break our Sawm (Fast) once we see that the sun has set?

Question: We cannot hear the Athaan (call to Prayer) because the Masjid (mosque) is far away from the place where we live. Is it permissible for us to break our Sawm (Fast) once we see that the sun has set?

Answer: When you are most certain that the sun has already set or you think it has most likely set, as you are not positively sure of its setting,due to heavy clouds, then you may break your Sawm even if you are too far away from the Masjid to hear the Athaan. This is based on a Hadeeth in which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is reported to have said… read more here.

What is the ruling on a person who delays breaking Sawm (fast)?

Question: What is the ruling on a person who delays breaking Sawm (Fast) until a long time after Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer during Ramadaan; for example, at 9 or 10 PM?

Answer: A fasting person should break Sawm immediately at sunset. This complies with the regular practice and words of the Prophet (peace be upon him). In this regard, it is reported on the authority of Sahl ibn Sa`d (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him) said: People will remain on the right path (i.e., acting upon the Sunnah) as long as they hasten to break Sawm (immediately at sunset). (Agreed upon by Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim) In brief, delaying Iftaar (breaking Fast) until a long time after sunset does not conform to the Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet); rather, it is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion)… read more here.

Making Du`aa’ when breaking fast

Question: The Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him) said: The Du`aa’ (supplication) of a fasting person at the time of breaking Sawm (Fast) will not be rejected.What is the exact time referred to by the phrase “Du`aa’ at the time of breaking Sawm”? Does it refer to Du`a’ made just few moments before Iftaar (breaking the Fast), or immediately after it?

Answer: This Hadeeth is narrated by Ibn Maajah. The author of Al-Zawaa’id ranked its Isnaad (chain of narrators) as Saheeh (authentic).Focusing on the question, Du`aa’ can be made before or after Iftaar because the preposition “at” refers to both times… read more here.

Iftaar starts at the time of the Athaan of the Maghrib Salaah

Question: Does Iftar (breaking the Fast) during Ramadaan start upon hearing the Athaan (call to Prayer) of the Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer or upon seeing the setting of the sun? According to a Hadeeth, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: Once he was on a journey, he said to one of his Companions: “Get up and mix Saweeq (powdered barley) with water for us.” He then bade him mount a camel and watches for the sunset. Once he has seen it, they would immediately break fast.

Answer: The fast is to be ended upon the sunset or when one has been informed by a trustworthy person that the time of Iftaar has become due; alternatively, when they hear the Athaan of the Maghrib Prayer… read more here.

Breaking fast upon verifying that the sun has set and declined below the western horizon

Question: A group of people emerged in our town saying that they are staunch adherents to the Sunnah of Al-Mustafaa (peace be upon him). But it is observed that they break fast in Ramadaan and in other months at twilight (the time the sun is declining). They also say that the Hadeeth which they quote in support of their action is sound and authentic. What is your opinion with regard to this issue, our Shaykh?

Answer: Allaah (Exalted be He) says: …then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) stated: When night falls from this side and the day disappears from this side and the sun has set, then the fasting person should break fast. (Reported by Al-Bukhaaree) Therefore, it is not allowed to break fast until the sun has completely set and declined below the western horizon, and the night has fallen in the eastern horizon. This can be ascertained either by witnessing the setting of the sun or by hearing the Mu’ath-thin (caller to Prayer) making the Athaan (call to Prayer) at the prescribed time… read more here.

Breaking the fast when the sun sets

Question: Allaah (Exalted be He) says: …then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall It is established that Shiites quote this verse as evidence that breaking the fast should not take place except after seeing the stars in the sky, which for them is the actual night, as stated in the story of Prophet Ibraaheem (Abraham) (peace be upon him) in which Allaah says: When the night covered him over with darkness he saw a star. Then, what is the reply to their claim, keeping in mind that they deny some Hadeeths which we quoted for them as evidence for breaking the fast upon the setting of the sun. They also claim that the Noble Qur’aan has more authority than the Hadeeth?

Answer: If the sun has set, then it is the time to break the fast. The setting of the sun is the inception of the night, according to the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) statement: When night falls from this side and the day disappears from this side and the sun has set, then one should break his fast.read more here.

One should break the fast upon witnessing sunset

Question: Is it permissible to break the fast immediately upon hearing the Athaan (call to Saalah) of Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer during Ramadaan, or must one wait until the Mu’ath-thin (caller to Prayer) finishes the Athaan and then one may break the fast?

Answer: One should break the fast when seeing the sunset, or by hearing the Athaan of the Mu’ath- thin who raises the Athaan only after the sun has set. Thus, one should break fast upon hearing the Athaan… read more here.

Ruling on a person who mistakenly breaks his fast 5 minutes before the Athaan?

Question: What is the ruling on a person who mistakenly breaks their fast five minutes before the Athaan (call to Prayer) of Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer is announced? The reason is related to miscalculation of time.

Answer: The time of the fast starts from the break of dawn until sunset. A person is required to make up for their fast if they mistakenly broke it before sunset. One should not solely depend on checking the time by looking at the clock when breaking the fast. The visualization of the setting of the sun must also be taken into consideration. This is because the day length differs from one day to another… read more here.

Is it permissible to fast without having Suhoor ?

Question: Is it permissible to fast without having Suhoor (pre-dawn meal before the Fast)? May Allaah reward you with the best!

Answer: A fasting person is recommended to have Suhoor before dawn breaks as it gives the energy to fast. The Prophet (peace be upon him) encouraged Muslims to have Suhur stating that there is a blessing in this meal. However, Sawm (Fast) will still be valid even if one does not have Suhoor… read more here.

Should a fasting person break his Sawm if they are invited to a banquet?

Question: Should a person, who is invited by a Muslim brother to a daytime meal, break Sawm (Fast)?

Answer: It is not permissible to break an obligatory Sawm. As for voluntary Sawm, a Muslim has the choice either to continue or break the Sawm, although it is better to continue Sawm. It is authentically reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: When any of you is invited to a meal, they should accept (the invitation). If they are fasting, they should say, ‘I am fasting.’ In another wording, the Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: If they are fasting, they should make Du`aa’ (for the inviter), and if they are not fasting, they should partake of the meal.read more here.

What is the ruling on a person who delays Iftaar ?

Question: What is the ruling on a person who delays Iftaar (breaking the Fast) until after Taraaaweeeh (special supererogatory night Prayer in Ramadaan)? It is noteworthy that the person concerned is well-aware of the rulings pertaining to breaking Sawm (Fast). Also, when observing voluntary Sawm, he is in the habit of breaking Sawm after `Ishaa’ (Night) Prayer. What is the ruling on the validity of Sawm as such? I appreciate giving me advice in this regard.

Answer: Sawm ends at sunset. This is based on the Aayah (Qur’aanic verse) in which Allaah (Exalted be He) says: …then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall This is also based on the Hadeeth in which the Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: When night comes from this direction (east) and the day departs from this direction (west) and the sun has set, it is time for the fasting person to break Sawm. The Prophet (peace be upon him) is also reported to have said: People will remain on the right path (i.e., acting upon the Sunnah) as long as they hasten to break Sawm (immediately at sunset)read more here.

What is the meaning of Imsaak ?

Question: I would like Your Eminence to clarify the meaning of Imsaak. Is it only an act of Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet), or are all Muslims required to abide by it? Is it true that the Messenger of Allaah (peace be upon him) specified the time of Imsaak as being equal to the recitation of 50 Aayaat (Qur’aanic verses) before Fajr (Dawn) Prayer? Scholars estimated it to be half an hour. What is the ruling on whoever eats or drinks while the Athaan (call to Prayer) for Fajr is being announced? Does Sawm (Fast) start upon hearing the Athaan for Fajr Prayer or half an hour before or after the Athaan is announced?

Answer: Imsaak means abstention from food, drink, and all that invalidates Sawm from the beginning of the appointed time of Sawm. Allaah (Glorified and Exalted be He) clarifies in the Glorious Qur’aan the starting time of Sawm, which is the break of dawn, saying: …and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night), then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall. The Athaan for Fajr Prayer is a proclamation of the break of dawn. Therefore, you have to stop eating and drinking when you hear it… read more here.