A Summarized Description Of The Fasting Of The Messenger Of Allah (May Peace And Blessings Be Upon Him) Sheikh Abdul Aziz At-Tarefe

 The Ruling of Saum (Fasting)

 Saum is the fourth pillar of Islam and whoever abandons fasting without an excuse, has committed a major sin.

It is prohibited to precede Ramadan by fasting a day or two before (its commence), except for someone who is in the habit of fasting particular days or the one who has to make Kaffarah (compensation) or the one who is making Qada (Making up for a missed fast).

 The Start of Ramadan

 The beginning and the end of Ramadan is only considered by the sighting of the moon, not by calculations or by the (lunar) phases of the moon.The is a general agreement amongst the scholars that the sighting of the crescent must come from at least two trustworthy witnesses. No specific Dhikr (Remembrance) has been established from the Messenger of Allah (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) at the event of sighting the crescent.


 It is compulsory to make an intention the nightprior to the performance of the obligatory fasts,  whereas with optional fasts, if the intention is made at any time of the day then the correct opinion is that a person has the reward of the whole day.If a person intends the Iftaar (breaking the fast),then their fast is broken, even if they have not eaten (or drank).

Refraining From Those Things That Break A Person’s Fast

 It is obligatory to refrain from all things that nullify the fast from the start of Fajr until sunset, such as eating food, drinking and having sexual relations. According to the general agreement of the scholars, if a person eats or drinks deliberately and knowingly then their fast is broken, even if they have consumed something small. Taking normal or nutritional injections has the same ruling as eating and drinking.

It is permissible to do the following; Taste food without swallowing, use an oxygen mask for breathing, use Kohl (antimony) and eye and ear drops. However it is not allowed to use nose drops.

Vomiting intentionally or unintentionally does not break the fast according to the most correct opinion and likewise Hijama (cupping), blood transfer, nose bleeds and  bleeding wounds do not break the fast but it is best to delay blood transfer and hijama until the night so that the body does not become weak.Injecting in other than the vein does not break the fast.

  Iftaar (Breaking the Fast)

 Making Dua is prescribed at the moment of breaking the fast whether or not it is done facing the Qiblah or by raising the hands.It is prescribed to break the fast by eating before drinking and choosing the ripe date over the dry date, but if these items are unavailable, water should be drunk in sips. The continual fast where the Iftaar is delayed until just before the beginning of fajr or the continuation of a fast into the second or third day is prohibited according to an agreement of the scholars. Providing food for the fasting person with which to break his fast is recommended according to a consensus, although the hadith in regards to its virtue is not authentic.

 Hastening the Iftaar

 It is a emphasized Sunnah to hasten the Iftaar. Hastening the Iftaar means; to break the fast after being sure that the sun has set and not whilst in doubt of the setting of the sun.

If someone hastened and broke his fast and realised thereafter, that they had eaten before sunset due to it being overcast, then their fast is still valid according to the most correct opinion.

Suhoor (Pre-Dawn Meal)

 It is a Sunnah to delay the Suhoor to the last portion of the night and in it is blessing, meaning receiving assistance in performing good deeds for it gives energy to the person, therefore if a servant of Allah takes Suhoor then that will assist him in reciting the Quran, being obedient, connecting the ties of kinship and other good deeds.  And by this the blessing is attained.

 Fasting Of The People Who Have A Valid Excuse

 The traveler has the option to either fast or not, according to his condition.An old person does not need to fast, but instead they should feed a Miskeen (Poor person) as a substitute for each day missed {based upon this, the person who has an illness and is not expected to recover is given the same ruling}.

The sick and the traveler make up for their missed fasts without having to feed a Miskeen.

It is obligatory on the breastfeeding and pregnant women to make up fasts missed, and it is safer and more precautious for them to feed a Miskeen as a substitute for each day missed in addition to making up for it (after breast feeding or their pregnancy).

The one who has sexual intercourse  during the daylight hours of Ramadan must make up for it and must expiate for it[1]. This is the case for both the man and the woman if she did not protest.

[1]The expiation is : One frees a slave and if not able then fast two consecutive months and if not able to then feed sixty miskeen.


{Taken from the Translation of ‘A Summarized Description Of The PrayerFasting, Night Prayer And I’tikaaf Of The Messenger Of Allah(May Peace And Blessings Be Upon Him)’ Authored By Sheikh Abdul Aziz Ibn Marzouq At-Tarefe}


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