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Ask the Scholar About Ramadan Issues ( Fatwa Session)

Dear Brothers/Sisters,

Thank you very much for joining us in this Fatwa session. We would like also to thank our guest, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, for answering the questions directed to him. You will find the answers of your questions below.

Monday, Apr. 12, 2021 | 22:00 - 22:45 GMT

Session is over.
DISCLAIMER
Views expressed by hosts/guests on this program (live dialogue, Facebook sessions, etc.) are their own and their appearance on the program does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent.  

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Q:

I live in Germany. Sometimes we start fasting before my home country (SA). So should I follow Germany or SA? 

A:

If you live in Germany, you should start and end the fast with your community. The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Fast with the people, and break the fast (i.e., celebrate Eid) with the people.” (Ahmad)

Therefore, you should join the Muslim community in celebrating such festive occasions.

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I assume you are part of a larger congregation in your city, so you should join them and start fasting with them.

That has been the practice of Muslims throughout generations. 

One can appreciate the wisdom and rationale if we consider that Islam, through such rituals and festivals, intends to foster the community’s bonds.  They say, ‘charity begins at home; so, building the community should start at the local level; then it is extended to the global level in Hajj where we join the millions from all over the world.

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Q:

When does taraweeh prayer start in Ramadan – on the first night or the second?

A:

Taraweeh prayer starts the night before the first day of Ramadan; so, if  Ramadan starts on Tuesday, Taraweeh should begin Monday night.  

Likewise, Taraweeh ends on the 11th of May if we celebrate Eidul Fitr on the 13th of May-as announced by the Fiqh Council of North America.


Q:

Does COVID-19 vaccination break the fasting?

A:

Vaccinations and immunization shots would not break the Fast as ruled by the World Council of Muslim jurists and other eminent scholars.

However, there is an exception when it comes to injections intended to administer nutrients or glucose. People who need such treatments should not be fasting.

Allah says, “Eat and drink until the white thread of the dawn becomes distinct from the black thread of the night.” In other words, stop eating when the dawn arrives.

It is clear from the above verse that we are to abstain from foods and drinks and sexual gratifications from dawn to dusk; since vaccinations do not fall in the category of eating and drinking, there is no reason to say that they would break the fast.


Q:

If a person misses Isha prayer, can he pray tarawih with the imam, with the intention of praying Isha?

A:

It is acceptable to do so, according to both Shafi and Hanbali schools; this is also the view held by scholars who strictly follow hadith. 

Even if you were an adherent of another school, you could still follow the above ruling. The preferred view among scholars is that one may choose any of these options in contentious matters, especially in hardship. 

There is a tradition reported about Muadh ibn Jabal that he used to pray Isha with the Prophet, peace be upon him, in Madinah, then he would head to Quba to lead the people in Isha; thus, he was praying Sunnah while the congregation praying behind him was praying Fard.

If it were wrong, the Prophet, peace be upon him, would have said so. Since he never stopped Muadh ibn Jabal, we infer a ruling to allow a person to pray Isha by following an Imam leading Taraweeh. 

There would be a more significant benefit if we were to follow this ruling. It would avoid distractions in Prayer, for if everyone who arrives at the mosque late were to establish their own Jama`ah in the mosque, at the same time that Taraweeh is in progress, it would undoubtedly be a source of distraction and great confusion.


Q:

Is it permissible to pray two rakahs of taraweeh with the intention of offering the Sunnah after Isha prayer?

A:

Indeed, we are allowed to do that, according to some scholars.  The precedent for praying Fard behind someone praying Sunnah and vice versa has precedents in the Sunnah. 

We have authentic reports that Muadh ibn Jabal used to lead Isha prayer for the people of Quba after he had prayed isha with the Prophet earlier.

He intended to pray Sunnah, while his congregants had the intention of praying their Fard

Having said this, I should also point out: If you are not comfortable in doing so, you may postpone your Sunnah of Isha and make it up later. We learn from the authentic reports that the Prophet, peace be upon him, would make up some of the Sunnah prayers he missed on rare occasions due to his engagement with delegations and other urgent matters. 

Therefore, there is no harm if you do it later after finishing the Taraweeh with the imam.


Q:

Does wearing lipstick break my fasting?

A:

Lipstick or make-up of any kind would not break the fast as they do not fall under the category of consuming foods or drinks.


Q:

I am on the habit of fasting Mondays and Thursdays, if the day of doubt coincides with Monday, is it permissible to fast it?

A:

If you have been in the habit of fasting those two days of the week, you may fast on Monday or Thursday-if it falls on the day of doubt. However, you are not allowed to do so with the intention of Ramadan fast.

The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Do not fast a day or two before Ramadan, unless someone was in the habit of fasting fixed days of fasting during the week and the day of doubt coincided with it, in which case, he should fast.” (Al-Bukhari)  

We may do well to remember that such confusion would not arise if we follow the calculation method in determining the beginning and the ending of Ramadan as advocated by Fiqh Councils of North and European Fiqh council.

They have declared that the first day of Ramadan falls on the 13th of April, and Eidul Fitr falls on the 13th of May.

If we follow this method, it will help save us from much confusion; it would also help us organize our activities more efficiently.


Q:

Does diarrhea make it permissible for the fasting person to break his fast?

A: 

A minor case of diarrhea, headache or stomach pain, etc., should not be the reason to skip the fast. We are allowed to skip the fast only if it worsens the sickness.

So, one is allowed or should skip the fast -if the diarrhea is severe and causes exhaustion and dehydration. In such cases, one should replace the loss of water to prevent further complications. We read in the Quran: “Allah wishes ease for you, not hardship.” (Quran 2:185)

However, one should make up the fast later.


Q:

Does burping break the fast?

A:

Burping does not break the fast.


Q:

Is fasting invalidated by a coma?

A:

A temporary instance of a coma or loss of consciousness does not break the fast as it is comparable to sleep. However, if the condition lasts the entire day of the fast, then the fast is null and void. 

The rationale is that fasting is an act of worship; thus, one should intend to forego consuming foods and drinks and sexual gratifications. One cannot be supposed to do so unless we are in full possession of our senses; that is not the case with someone in a state of coma.


Q:

A surgeon loses concentration because of fasting; is it permissible for him to break the fast?

A:

If a surgeon performing operating fears loss of concentration because of fasting, he should skip the fast; if he is fasting and it happens, he should break it.  A surgeon’s work entails saving the lives and health of his patients. Therefore, he should not fast if fasting may impair his judgment. He cannot be expected to function efficiently without due concentration. Since saving lives is one of the primary objectives of the Shariah, he can make use of the concession to skip the fast while he is at work. He ought to make up the fasts later.


Q:

Is it proven that fasting Ramadan in Madinah is equivalent to fasting seventy Ramadans elsewhere?

A: 

It is a misconception among some people; it has no basis in the authentic sources.

There are specific dubious reports attributed to the Prophet stating that fasting in Madinah is equivalent to fasting seventy Ramadans. Scholars who are experts in hadith criticism have declared them as fabricated; thus, we ought to dismiss them. 

The Prophet said whoever attributes a false statement to me let him find his abode in hell-fire.  (Reported by Tirmidhi)

We are allowed to pronounce such judgments on matters related to ibadah only by reference to the revealed texts and not on dubious reports.


Q:

Last year, my sister ate sahoor after dawn broke by mistake. Is her fasting valid?

A:

If she ate by mistake while fasting and stopped as soon as she realized, her fast is valid.

If, however, she continued eating, then the fsdt is broken; she ought to make up for it later. 

The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Whoever eats by mistake (i.e., forgetfully), while fasting, let him complete the fast; for it is Allah who provided him food and drink.” (Al-Bukhari)


Q:

What is the ruling on sending messages to friends asking for forgiveness before the coming of Ramadan?

A:

Ramadan, the greatest and the most blessed month in the Islamic Calendar, is the time for spiritual renewal. It accords us the opportunity to seek repentance, seek forgiveness, break bad habits, develop positive habits, and renew our faith.

Therefore, the scholars have advised us that the first step towards maximizing the blessings of Ramadan is to seek the repentance of Allah. Seeking repentance is only acceptable if we seek repentance of sins involving humankind’s rights. Hence it is only reasonable to say that seeking forgiveness of people, whom we may have offended or hurt, is a good practice so that we enter the blessed month of Ramadan with a clean slate.  

May Allah bless us to reap the maximum benefits of the blessed month of Ramadan and accept our good deeds.


Q:

Working in creating cartoon and video games

Currently I am a student and depending on my father for all types of financial support. But recently I’ve got a job offer which is about making illustrations of maps and cartoon characters, and most of them are for video games. Some video games are not halal, so can I accept this job?

A:

If your job involves creating Haram videos, you should not go for it; Islam teaches us that we should try to correct the evil if we can; if we cannot do so, at least we ought to hate it.

Since creating haram videos is haram as it leads people astray and promotes vice and corruption, a Muslim can never promote, aid, or condone it. At least, we ought to hate it if we cannot change it.

So, I would advise you to look earnestly for another job free of such vices. Open your mind and do your best by seeking the help of Allah. Here are two du’s I would urge you to read and pray to Allah:

Allaahumma aghninee bi halaalika an haraamika wa bi fadhlika amman siwaaka

(O Allah, make me self-sufficient with what You have made lawful for me; and make me content with Your favor so that I do not need to look for that of others.)

Allaahumma inee as’luka min fadhlika wa rahmathika fa innahu laa yamlikuhaa illaa antha

(O Allah, I beg you to grant me your bounty and mercy, for You alone possess them.)

I pray to Allah to bless you in your search for a halal and pure source of living.


Q:

I was 13 years old when I fell in love with this man. He was 7 years older than me. I had decided to hide my feelings from him but when he proposed me I could not resist. He told me after few months that out Prophet SAW said that there is nothing better than nikkah between the two who love each other and it will also protect us from haram. At the time I was 14 years old and he was 23. I trusted him so much that i even fell in more love that he wanted to do nikkah for the sake of love of Allah and his messenger to me that I agreed. I know sbr was the best option for us but I just didn’t want to be in a relationship outside of marriage. My family did not know about my nikkah. It was secret and had been kept secret till now.  I only recently came to know that girl’s wali’s permission is important for the nikkah. We were in a sexual relationship. His family came to know about our nikkah 7 years ago. He tried everything to get them agreed but they didn’t agree. He did not marry anyone else for 8 years and waited for me to get older and for our families to get agree. Recently his family arranged his marriage and told him just a week before the marriage. His mother said if he didn’t get married she would suicide. I moved to a different country 4 years ago with my family and we were in a long distance relationship. I loved and trusted him so much that I never thought that I will ever have to leave this man except death. But he got married and divorced me. He knew that I’m neither a virgin anymore nor my heart would be able to love someone else. He still left me. My whole life has collapsed but Allah has protected me from doing anything wrong. 

My family does not know that I was in nikkah and they want me to get married. I don’t know if I ever will be able to love someone else. I can’t even forget him even when he is not mine anymore. I don’t know if I’ll be able to love or care someone else like I did for him. But he got settled with someone else. 

Should I get married? Will my heart ever forget him? Do i have to tell my future husband about my previous marriage? How to move on? How to live without him? I don’t even know what I am doing, everything was for him if Allah wouldn’t have guided me I might not have been here. Please give me answer according to hanafi fikh. May Allah give you ajr for this Ameen.

A:

I am so sorry to hear about your predicament. I pray to Allah to inspire you to turn towards Him in sincere repentance and bring peace and comfort to your heart by making amends for your past sins.

You ought to start by acknowledging the sin you have made. You did a grave sin by forging an illicit relationship with the man. It was built on a haram foundation. The so-called secret marriage you said you made is not a valid one in Islam; in Islam, marriage is a solemn social contract that is done by invoking Allah’s blessings; it requires for its validity specific minimum requirements. Since your ‘marriage’ did not conform to the Islamic guidelines, it was not valid in Islam.  

The minimum conditions for the validity of nikah are the following:

  • The consent of the guardian of the woman
  • presence of witnesses
  • offering and acceptance
  • and mahr (dower).

Once the above conditions have been fulfilled, the marriage will be deemed valid; otherwise, it will be null and void. 

As far as the guardian’s consent is concerned, it can only be dispensed with if the guardian is refusing to give permission for considerations other than Islamic, in which case the judge can authorize the marriage after having followed the due process. If, on the other hand, such is not the case and no attempt was made to ascertain the guardian’s consent, then such a marriage would be considered invalid and, therefore, unacceptable in Islam. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “There is no (valid) marriage without a guardian and two reliable witnesses.”

By stipulating the conditions mentioned above for marriage’s validity, Islam insists that marriage should remain distinct from other loose and immoral lifestyles such as fornication and illicit affairs. Hence, the Prophet insisted on making marriages public.

Society has a share in marriage in the sense that people should know that both of you are married so that they do not suspect you of maintaining an illicit relationship. According to Islam’s teachings, we are under obligation to do whatever we can to safeguard our religion, honor, and dignity. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Whosoever shuns what is doubtful he has protected his religion and honor; but whosoever commits what is doubtful, he may inadvertently fall into haram!”

Now that he has moved away from you and ‘gave you divorce,’ you must return to Allah seeking repentance. I know it is hard for you; however, it is possible to do so by seeking a professional therapist’s help. You can ask the Editor of this site to connect you with a Muslim therapist who would help you.

I urge you to forget that chapter in your life and never turn back and look to the future. Even though you did a grave sin, Allah is Merciful; He will forgive you if you are determined to repent and do what it takes to change for the better.

On repentance, you may do well to refer to the answer linked below.

The Door of Repentance Is Wide Open

Finally, coming to the question about whether you should divulge your past to someone you marry in the future: the answer is that you should not disclose it to anyone. Since Allah has placed a cover over it, you should not lift the cover. You ought to cry out to Allah and thank Him as He has covered and protected you from being disgraced.

I urge you to continue to seek repentance and beg for the mercy of Allah.


Q:

Abbassid caliphs and Ottoman Sultans would refer to themselves as the shadow of Allah on Earth. Is this permissible?

A:

Unfortunately, such an erroneous notion was introduced into Islam by the corrupt rulers aided by evil scholars. They invented traditions falsely attributed to the Prophet(peace be upon him). It resulted in conditioning Muslims to resign themselves to accepting tyranny and corruption instead of working to change the condition. It sadly resulted in Muslims violating the Quranic principle of commanding good and forbidding, which is the Divine mandate prescribed by Allah.

And the Prophet had sounded a dire warning against those who fail to restrain the oppressors by failing to perform the above duty; he warned Muslims that Allah would send down His punishment which would not spare anyone.


Q:

My Question is regarding caste of any human being. Here in India people take pride on their caste like Syed .Khan etc.

Generally they don’t want to marry in another caste what they think they belong to lower section of the society or vice versa.

Wen Islam talk about equality and taqwa.. wat is the relevance of cast.

Thank you.

Please remember us in ur dua

A:

The following Quranic verse sets the basic principle of Islam in regards to such differences:

 “O humankind, We created you all from a single man and a single woman and made you into races and tribes so that you should recognize one another. In Allah’s eyes, the most honored of you are the ones most mindful of Him: Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.”  (Qur’an: 49: 13)

The Prophet said, ‘When a person of sound faith and character arrives proposing for marriage marry him or her; otherwise, you are opening the door for corruption.”

Therefore, as Imam Malik and others have said, compatibility in marriage is the compatibility of character and faith. 

Unfortunately, Muslims today have been influenced by customs and practices that are not in conformity with the above criterion established by Allah and His messenger. We know that the Prophet and his family and companions never preferred blood lineage or race in choosing marriage partners. How can they do otherwise when the Prophet declared, “The people closest to me are those who are conscious of Allah.” And he also said, referring to Salman al-Farisi, “Salman is part of my family!” we know he was not an Arab but of a Persian origin.Therefore, it is high time for Muslims to root out such un-Islamic influences and restore the Islamic teaching of equality of all before God. The Prophet declared in Makkah: “O Quraysh, through Islam, Allah wants to purge from your hearts your false pride on your ancestry and lineage; all of humankind is from Adam, and Adam is created from the dust.” He repeated the same message in his Farewell Sermon during the Hajj. Ironically, many Muslims today ignore such fundamental Islamic teachings preferring to hold on to the pagan concepts.


Q:

Is it permissible to interrupt a khateeb during his khutbah, if he is giving wrong info. either from the Quran or sunnah e.g. iblis is an angel, time of breaking fast, paying cash instead of performing  Udhaiyah etc.

A:

You need to ask yourself: Is he a person qualified in sound knowledge of Islam?

If he is qualified, you need to ask him what evidence or authority he is making such statements; before confronting him on the minbar, you should do so in private. For it may be that he is presenting some of the opinions held by some scholars.

If he is not qualified, you need to have a free and frank discussion with the authorities to find someone qualified to fulfill this grave responsibility of a khateeb or preacher. 

If they are unwilling to accept your advice, perhaps you should move to another mosque.


Q:

 In many websites when one tries to sign up for an account it is stated in the terms and conditions that cases will be resolved in man made courts, is it kufr to accept the terms and conditions in these sites especially which one does not need, for example movie sites or video game sites which is a waste of time? I understand when it comes to programmes one needs due to great importance it is ok to sign these terms and conditions but what about those which one does not need at all and are a waste of time like many of these entertainment websites. Is it kufr to sign such a condition or is the Muslim committing a sin? 

A:

As long as you are speaking about websites that are not promoting vices and corruption, you may sign up and accept the conditions- provided those conditions do not oblige you to commit something haram or forbidden by Allah. 

Coming to movies, we must be extra careful, for most of them may contain nude or inappropriate scenes or messages that are unethical and therefore unacceptable by Islamic standards.

In such cases, a Muslim ought to stay away from them as best as possible.

As for clean movies or educational programs, we cannot shun them; by doing so, we may end closing the door to further education and learning. Islam celebrates beneficial knowledge, so we must not shy away from learning-regardless of the source. The Islamic motto says: “Wisdom is the lost article of a believer; he would try to appropriate it wherever he finds it.”


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Is it permissible for Muslims to congratulate each other on the coming of Ramadan?

It is OK to wish everyone blessings and express joy for the arrival of Ramadan. Ramadan is the most blessed month in the Islamic calendar. It is the month of revelation of the Quran, the greatest gift of Allah to humankind. So, commemorating this most extraordinary gift of Allah to humanity is also one of its purposes.

Furthermore, the Prophet (peace be upon him), we are told, addressed the companions to welcome the blessed month with great joy and expectation.

It is no wonder then that Muslims throughout history have been welcoming the month of Ramadan with great fanfare:

Suppport AboutIslam.net

Allah says: “Say, “Let them rejoice in the bounty and mercy of Allah; that is better than what they amass.” (Quran 10:58)

In conclusion, we should wish each other the blessings of Ramadan and offer prayers – to motivate each other- to reap the maximum benefits of Ramadan.

Almighty Allah knows best.


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Do you have any tips for fasting alone in a household of non-Muslims (this is also my first time fasting for Ramadan)?

I pray to Allah to bless you and make it easy for you. You may do well to know that you are starting with a clean slate when you start with your practice of Islam; as such, your good deeds will merit greater rewards from Allah.

Suppport AboutIslam.net

Since I don’t know much about your circumstances, I can only list here some general tips in the hope that they would help:

  1. Keep your mind focus on the thought of Allah by practicing the remembrance: invoking His mercy, forgiveness, and grace.
  2. Try to read and reflect on the meaning of the Qur’an as best as you can.
  3. Practice introspection and contemplation of the signs of God in nature and the scripture
  4. Try to do the good works as much as possible.
  5. If you have the means, give charity to share the blessings of God with the less fortunate.