Imam of Toronto Mosque Responds to Questions on Fasting – Live Sessions

Dear Brothers/Sisters,

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

Friday, May. 17, 2019 | 13:00 - 15:00 GMT

Session is over.
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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.  

Is it better for a traveler to fast or not fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

 Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

A traveler is allowed to break his/her fast. Allah says, {So whoever among you is ill or on a journey [during Ramadan] – then an equal number of days [are to be made up for missed-fast days].} (Al-Baqarah 2:184)

 

However, the four Imams are of the view that fasting whilst traveling is permissible and valid. If the traveler fasts, it counts and he/she does not have to make up for it.

As to what is better, that depends:

 

a) If fasting while traveling is easy, then fasting will be better to get the merits of fasting in Ramadan. Abu Ad-Darda’ (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “We went out with the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) [on a journey] during the month of Ramadan when it was intensely hot, until one of us would put his hand on his head because of the intense heat, and no one among us was fasting apart from the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) and `Abdullah ibn Rawahah.” (Al-Bukhaari and Muslim)

 

b) On the other hand, if fasting while traveling is difficult, it would be better for the person not to fast.

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.

 


Can husband and wife sleep in one bed while fasting?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

Yes, of course. A husband and his wife could sleep in one bed while fasting so long as no intercourse or ejaculation takes place.

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


Does wearing hair oil break the fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

Wearing hair oil will not affect the validity of your fast.

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.

 


Does committing sins break the Fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

The main objective of fasting is developing taqwa (consciousness of Allah). Allah Almighty says, {O believers! Fasting is prescribed for you—as it was for those before you—so perhaps you will become mindful of Allah˺.} (Al-Baqarah 2:183)

 

Therefore, a Muslim has to develop the moral of taqwa throughout the month of Ramadan.

 

As for the fast of those who commit sins, it is valid, though it is imperfect.

 

A person may not attain the reward of fasting because of committing sins. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Whoever does not give up false speech and acting upon it, Allah has no need of his/her giving up his/her food and drink.” (Al-Bukhari)

 

Also, Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “There may be people who fast and get nothing from their fast except hunger and thirst, and there may be those who pray qiyam (night prayer) and get nothing from their qiyam but a sleepless night.” (Ahmad)

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


Does changing mouth smell break the fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

 Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

If you refer to brushing your teeth, using miswak, and/or using mouthwash during fasting, it’s OK, but don’t swallow anything. You may also rinse your mouth with water during the fasting hours without overdoing it.

 

Amir ibn Rabiyyah (may Allah be pleased him) narrated: “I saw Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) using miswak while he was fasting many times that I couldn’t count.” (Al-Bukhari)

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


I am a new to Islam and I cannot fast because of smoking. Any advice?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

You need to try your best. Allah Almighty says, {So fear Allah as much as you could…} (At-Taghabun 64:16)

 

Moreover, you are best advised to visit a local imam for support and counselling.

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


Should we break fast during or after the Adhan?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

It’s recommended by the Sunnah to hasten to break your fast once the Maghrib becomes due.  Abu Dharr reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “My nation will not cease to be upon goodness so long as they hasten to break their fast and delay the pre-dawn meal.” (Ahmad)

 

So, once the Muadhdhin (caller to the Prayer) commences giving the adhan, you are to break your fast following the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


Can studying be a valid excuse for breaking the fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

In Ramadan, Muslims are encouraged to more productive and contributing at their professions, work, or studies.

 

Fasting helps us maintain time management and discipline. So, we are supposed to focus more in achieving our objectives in the month of Ramadan.

 

Studying and seeking knowledge are among the good deeds that are highly valued and rewarded in Islam.

 

Safwan ibn `Assal (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Surely, Angels spread their wings for joy and pleasure with the knowledge seeker.” (Ahmad)

 

Also, Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “If one treads a path in order to seek knowledge, Allah will make easy for him the (way) to enter Paradise.”

 

Given the above, you are to be commended for your efforts in studying while observing the fast of Ramadan. Try your best to perfectly achieve your study goals, which are valuable good deeds, and to observe the obligatory fasting of Ramadan.

 

Studying is not a valid excuse in itself for a student to break the fast. However, if a student experiences an extreme hardship during a daytime of Ramadan due to fasting, then he or she may break the fast and make up for this day later.

 

One has to do his or her best in this regard. Allah Almighty says, {So fear Allah as much as you could…} (At-Taghabun 64:16)

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


I serve in the army, should I fast?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

Fasting in the month of Ramadan is an obligation on Muslims, men and women, who are capable to. Allah Almighty says, {O believers! Fasting is prescribed for you—as it was for those before you—so perhaps you will become mindful ˹of Allah˺.} (Al-Baqarah 2:183)

 

 

At workplaces, religious accommodation is legally guaranteed in most, if not all, countries.

 

Therefore, you may contact your local chaplain for support and advice.

 

Hopefully, you would be capable to observe the fast of Ramadan and other religious rituals while you perfectly carry out your work duties.

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.


Is taking sahur a condition for fasting?



In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

 

Thank you for your good question. May you have a happy and blessed Ramadan, ameen.

 

Though it is not a condition for the validity of fasting in itself, having sahur (pre-dawn meal) is recommended by the Sunnah. Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Have suhur for it has a blessing.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

 

It’s recommended to delay the sahur to be close to the Fajr Adhan. Abu Dharr reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “My nation will not cease to be upon goodness so long as they hasten to break their fast and delay the pre-dawn meal.” (Ahmad)

 

May Allah accept your and our good deeds, ameen.

 

Allah Almighty knows best.