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Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session – Sheikh Ahmad Kutty)

As-salamu alaykum dear brothers and sisters,

We would like to thank our guest Sheikh Ahmad Kutty for answering the users’ questions in our new Live Fatwa service. Our viewers will find the answers to their questions below.

Q. How should new Muslims prepare themselves for Ramadan?

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamThis is an important question for every Muslim to consider as we approach the arrival of the blessed month of Ramadan. Since I have answered this question earlier, I would like to cite it below:

Ramadan is an event that occurs in the life of the faithful, as individuals and as an Ummah, once a year. It is intended by Allah to help us to recharge our spiritual batteries and thus prepare us for the great mission of realizing His will on earth. Therefore, in order to benefit from Ramadan, we may do well to prepare for it by opening our hearts and minds to embrace it. Let me offer a few tips:

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1. We should empower ourselves by learning as much as we can about the precise laws as well as the benefits of fasting.

2. We should ensure that we gain true benefits from our fasting, let us make sure to realize the spirit of fasting: this can only be done by abstaining, not only from food, drink, and sex, but also by strictly restraining our minds, hearts as well as our eyes, ears, hands, tongue, and so on.

3. We must embrace the spirit of fasting as stressed in Hadith: to be charitable and compassionate as much as we can.

4. We should strengthen our relationship with the Qur’an; for Ramadan is the month of the Qur’an.

5. We should engage in dhikr and condition ourselves to make it second nature.

6. Last but not least, we should build up our community through acts of charity and compassion and extending help to those in need as much as we can.

Let us pray that we come out of Ramadan with our faith recharged, gaining strength in our faith and commitment and relationship with Allah.

Q. I had a question in regards to fasting. If a little drop of rain gets in your mouth and you don’t spit it out and swallow it on purpose because it is tiny and difficult to avoid, will it break your fast?
How does someone avoid water when its raining and they’re like talking, sometimes you can’t just spit in certain situations?

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamIf you swallow any morsel of food or water deliberately your fast is nullified. If, however, it happened by mistake or accidentally – against your best of intentions – your fast is still considered as valid.
We are accountable for actions within our control; while we are excused for those we have no control. Allah states in the Qur’an: {Allah does not charge a soul except [with that within] its capacity.} (Al-Baqarah 2:286)
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has excused my community of their lapses and slip-ups, their forgetfulness and that which they are coerced into.

Q. Salam aleikum. I have often seen Muslims wearing verses of Qur’an like a charm or amulet, talking about protecting themselves from the evil eye, etc, or drinking water mixed with the ashes of a Qur’an verse. All of this seems like precisely the sort of superstitous nonsense of jahiliyyah that the Qur’an warns us away from! We aren’t supposed to follow what our fathers did, blindly and without question. Aren’t we supposed to place our trust in Allah as the Best of Protectors? If we are turning to charms and amulets, isn’t that like saying Allah alone can’t protect us from harm? Do we run the risk of committing bid’ah and shirk with these behaviors?

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamHanging talismans, amulets and charms are considered as forbidden or wholly undesirable – even they contain verses from the Qur’an or Hadith as ruled by eminent companions such as Ibn Mas’ud and others.

Imam Ahmad reports that the Prophet (peace be on him) said, “charms, amulets and talismans are akin to shirk (associating partners with Allah.)”.

As Imam Ibrahim al-Nakha’i said, “Ibn Mas’ud considered hanging amulets or talismans or charms with contents from the Qur’an also as wholly undesirable.”
However, there are some scholars made an exception in regards to those with the Qur’anic verses, while forbidding others. Since issues like these are matters of essential belief, we are best advised to shun all doubtful practices.

If such practices were recommended then the Prophet (peace be upon him) would have been anxious to protect his children and grandchildren and the hundreds of Muslim children brought to him for invoking divine blessings and protection. His advice to all of them was limited to prescribing reading of the mu’awwadhaat (protective devices for spiritual immunity): reading fathiah, ayaat al-kursi, the last three surahs of the Qur’an) and specific du’as and supplications.

In conclusion, we are best advised to limit to the well established precedents, rather than following the questionable practices. The Prophet’s golden rule should be our guide in such matters: “Leave that which is doubtful in favor of that which is not doubtful.“.

I pray to Allah to grant us rectitude in thoughts, words and actions and thus become worthy of those who place their sole trust in Allah. Amen.

 Assalamu aleykum. My question will be about “Pact of Umar”. I was very surprised, when read ibn Kathir’s tafsir on sura Tawba (9:29). Especially, “Pact of Umar”, and opinion about jizya. Today, scholars said that jizya is just a tax, but ibn Kathir shows that jizya is an act of a shame and humiliation of non Muslims. As proof, he shows “Pact of Umar”. You can Google it and find this Pact. There are so many strange and cruel things about non Muslims. How it can be in our religion – religion of peace? How great Khalif Umar could be so rough? And, if it’s not authentic, why ibn Kathir wrote this such a good example for all Muslims and prove it with hadeeths (for example, hadith about pushing non Muslim from the road, not greetings etc)? Similar position I’ve found in Tabari and Qurtubi tafsirs. So, it seems like to be normal position for those great scholars of that early period, they all call to humiliate non Muslims, war against them etc. In our days scholars say different, they say that war can be only like self-defense, jizya is a good tax, non Muslims have almost equal rights etc, but as you know earlier scholars, especially imams of madhabs considered like more known and more right scholars then scholars in our time. What we see then? Our scholars in nowadays, specially say untrue about our religion that seems to be good in Western world? What can you say about “Pact of Umar” and ibn Kathir’s tafsir of ayah 9:29? Why scholars like ibn Taymiya and ibn Asakir guess this Pact as authentic and normal Pact?

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamThis questions deserves a detailed answer. The time and space constraints of this forum do not allow me to do justice to it. Therefore, I would prefer to tackle this issue – some other time.


Q. I learned that the egg industry is killing male chicks because they can’t lay eggs but I also learned that the Prophet (saw) said “There is no man who kills [even] a sparrow or anything smaller, without its deserving it, but God will question him about it [on the judgment day]”. So I want to know : is it halal to buy eggs from the egg industry ?Barak Allahu Fik

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamIf this is true,  then it amounts to upsetting the divine order. Such is the pet project of Satan as he swore to God that he will strive hard to lead Adam’s children away from God’s way by inspiring them with disfiguring His creation.

Therefore, Muslims should devise their own methods of production of eggs wholly free of such methods.
I cannot bring myself to expound more on this issue, as I do not have the detailed facts surrounding it. It is something new to me.

Q. I wear hijab all the time including covering my head with head cap and then pinning a head scraf above that. Since its highly hot climate now, it’s unable to wear scarf as I’m getting bad headache due to sweat and gets suffocation. I have long hair which further makes it sweat . I’m afraid that I will get the wrath of Allah if I don’t pin my head scarves. Can I unpin head scarf? Kindly help me !

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamYou may cover your head with any comfortable clothes suitable for weather. There is no need to be rigid over the precise form of covering or materials.
Allah orders women to wear scarves; as long as you try to comply with this order as best as you can, you are free from blame.


Q. I am a distributor of NU SKIN where i buy products for less than its retail price. Buying products from Nuskin will give my “recruiter” some “income”. I do not sell what i buy, and i dont recruit other people. I just enjoy the discount and use the product. Is this haram? May Allah reward you. 

Questions on Ramadan and Fasting (Live session - Sheikh Ahmad Kutty) - About IslamI do not answer questions related to Islamic finance. You should submit this question to Dr. Monzer Kahf who is an expert on Islamic economics. He appears on this site often; alternatively, you may contact him here.