10 Oct

Ramadan Q & A

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and is observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad (PBUH). This annual observance is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

Here are some common Questions and Answers regarding this topic:

How severe is it to miss a fast in the month of Ramadan without a valid reason?

It is related by Abu Hurayrah (RA) that the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) said, “Whoever omits even a single fast of Ramadan without a legal excuse, such as travel or illness, amends cannot be made for the omission even if he observes fasting throughout the life.” (Musnad Ahmad, Tirmizi, Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah and Daarami)

During which days in Ramadan did the Holy Prophet (SAW) exert himself more in worshipping Allah Ta’ala?

Sayyidah Ayshah (RA) related to us that the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) strove harder and took greater pains to observe prayer (Salah) etc., during the last ten days of Ramadan than during the other days.” (Muslim)

When should we look for Laylatul Qadr (Night of Power)?

It is related by Sayyidah Ayshah (RA) that the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) said, “Seek the Night of Power in the odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan.”

What is the best dua that we can make in Laylatul Qadr?

Sayyidah Ayshah (RA) realted, “I asked the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) if I came to know which was Laylatul Qadr, what should I make in it. The Prophet (SAW) replied, ‘Say: اللهم انك عفو كريم تحب العفو فاعف عنى Allahumma innaka ‘afuwun kareemun tuhubbul ‘afwa fa’fu ‘anni (O Allah! You are, indeed the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful, You love to forgive; so forgive me).” (Musnad Ahmad, Tirmizi and Ibn Majah)

Since moon sighting has become such a controversial issue today, is it okay for me to fast a day before Ramadan just to be on the safe side?

It is related by Abu Hurayrah (RA) that the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) said, “None of you should keep fast a day or two before the commencement of Ramadan except if he habitually fasts on that day, so then should he fast on that day. (For instance, a person usually fasts on every Monday or Thursday; so, if a Monday or Thursday occurs on the 29th or 30th of Sha’ban, he is permitted to keep a fast on that day).” (Bukhari and Muslim) Ammar bin Yasir (RA) related to us, “Whoever kept a fast on the day of doubt, he failed to obey Abul Qasim, the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW).” (Abu Dawood, Tirmizi, Nasai, Ibn Maja and Daarami)

How significant is it to eat Sahri?

It is related by Amr bin al-‘Aas (RA) that the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) said, “That which distinguishes our fast from the fast of the other people of the Scripture is the eating of Sahri.” (Muslim)

What is the recommended amount of time that should be kept between Sahri and the azan for Fajr?

Sayyidina Anas (RA) relates to us, saying that Zayd bin Thabit (RA) told him, “We took Sahri with the Prophet (SAW) and then, he (quickly) stood up for the Fajr prayer.” Anas (RA) asked Zayd (RA), “How much time would have passed between the eating of Sahri and the Azan of Fajr. Zayd (RA) replied, “It was equal to what was needed for the recitation of fifty verses of the Qur’an.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

If dates are not available, what is the preferred way to break ones fast?

Sayyidina Anas (RA) relates to us that the Prophet (SAW) used to break the fast with a few fresh dates before the Maghrib prayer, and if fresh dates were not available at that time, with dry dates, and if that too was unavailable, he drank a few sips of water. (Tirmizi and Abu Dawood)

Is it permissible to fast while traveling?

Sayyidah Ayshah (RA) narrated that Hamzah bin ‘Amr Al-Aslami (RA) who used to fast much and often, once asked the Prophet (SAW), “Should I keep the fasts on a journey?” The Prophet (SAW) replied, “You may keep it if you like and you may not if you do not.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

If the journey I am going to undertake during the month of Ramadan requires a great deal of physical labor, should I still fast? Will this yield greater reward?

It is related by Jabir (RA), “The Messenger of Allah Ta’ala (SAW) was on journey and he saw a crowd and a man for whom a shade had been provided to guard against the sun. ‘What is the matter?’ enquired the Prophet (SAW). ‘This man is fasting,’ replied the men. ‘His condition is giving anxiety, therefore, a shade is being provided and the crowd has collected.’ ‘To fast during a journey is not an act of virtue,’ remarked the Prophet (SAW).” (Bukhari and Muslim)

Should women make up their missed prayers in Ramadan just as they make up their missed fasts of the month?

Sayyidah Muazah Adaviya a taba’ee lady narrated that she enquired from Sayyidah Ayshah (RA), “How is it that a menstruating women will make up her fasts but she will not make up her prayers?” Ayshah (RA) replied: “When we had our menses in the time of the Prophet (SAW), we were ordered to make up the fasts and were not ordered to make up the prayers (due to menstruation).” (Muslim)

Is it okay to embrace ones wife while fasting?

Abu Hurayrah (RA) narrated that a man came to the Prophet (SAW) and enquired about lying down with his wife and embracing her in the state of fasting. The Prophet (SAW) told him that it was allowed. Then another came and asked the same question, but the Prophet (SAW) did not permit him. The man whom the Prophet (SAW) had allowed was advanced in years while the other who was forbidden was young.” (Abu Dawood)

Is it permissible to apply kohl while fasting?

It is related by Anas (RA) that a person came to the Prophet (SAW) and asked, “There is some trouble in my eye. May I apply Collyrium (kohl) on it while fasting?” “Yes, you may.” replied the Prophet (SAW). (Tirmizi)

Should we use miswak while fasting?

‘Aamir bin Rabee’ah said, “I have seen the Prophet (SAW) using miswak in the state of fasting on innumerable occasions.” (Tirmizi and Abu Dawood)

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Hillside Islamic Center