Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Fiqh of Ramadaan – 9/30 Pillars of Fasting

Fiqh of Ramadaan – 9/30
Pillars of Fasting

Rukn (Pillar) linguistically means: the firm part of a thing on which it rests; support. And Arkaan is the plural of Rukn.
In Istilaah, Rukn refers to an essential part of something ([1]).
And fasting has two pillars which make up the essence of Siyaam, which are:
1-   Intention (Niyyah) &
2-   Abstinence (Al-Imsaak)

First Pillar: Intention
It is to resolve and determine to do something (Al-Qasd). The intention (niyyah) is an action of the heart. The Muslim should resolve in his heart that he is going to fast tomorrow. It is not prescribed for him to utter it out loud and say, “I intend to fast” or “I will fast tomorrow” or other phrases that have been innovated by some people. The correct intention is when a person resolves in his heart that he is going to fast tomorrow.
Intention is of two types:
1-    Intention for what purpose the act is being done &
2-   The Intention for what is being done

Type 1: Intention for what purpose the act is being done
This means that while performing an action, the person doing it should not have any other purpose but to do it solely for the sake of Allaah, so Ikhlaas (Sincerity) for Allaah should be there. And He does it seeking the pleasure and reward of Allaah and fearing His wrath and punishment.
Due to the saying of Allaah:
{وَمَا أُمِرُوا إِلاَّ لِيَعْبُدُوا الله مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ حُنَفَاء}
{And they were not commanded except to worship Allah, [being] sincere to Him in religion, inclining to truth} ([2])

And the hadeeth of Umar bin al-Khattaab (radiallah anhu) who said that I heard the Messenger of Allaah () say:
((إِنَّمَا الأَعْمَالُ بِالنِّيَّاتِ، وَإِنَّمَا لِكُلِّ امْرِئٍ مَا نَوَى، فَمَنْ كَانَتْ هِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ فَهِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَمَنْ كَانَتْ هِجْرَتُهُ لِدُنْيَا يُصِيبُهَا أَوِ امْرَأَةٍ يَتَزَوَّجُهَا فَهِجْرَتُهُ إِلَى مَا هَاجَرَ))
((The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions and every person will get the reward according to what he has intended. So whoever emigrated for the sake of Allaah and His Messenger () his emigration is for Allaah and His Messenger () and whoever emigrated for worldly benefits or for a woman to marry, his emigration was for what he emigrated for.)) ([3])

This means that every single action whether it is good or bad, accepted or rejected, rewarded or not rewarded, all depend on the intention. And the action’s uprightness and corruption are based on the uprightness and corruption of the intentions, as the Prophet () said:
(( ... إنما الأعمال بالخواتيم))
((… Verily the deeds are decided by the last actions)) ([4])

Meaning, the uprightness & corruption and the acceptance & non-acceptance of actions is based on what they are ended on.

So this is the first type of niyyah, which is to differentiate between the purpose of the action and the one for whom it is done, that is Allaah the One and Only without any partners. This is the type of niyyah which the Scholars have described in their books under their discussion of Ikhlaas and what relates to it.

Type 2: Differentiating between the various types of worships
In other words, being able to identify what is it that’s being done and being able to tell it apart from other acts, such as differentiating between the Zuhr prayer and the Asr prayer for instance, or differentiating between the fasting of Ramadaan and the fasting of other than it, or differentiating between the Ibaadaat (acts of worship) and the ‘Aadaat (custom).
For example: bathing; the motive must be clearly defined in the mind whether the purpose is just to clean the body or to do bath of janaabah. By having such intentions there will be a differentiation between an act of ibaadah and non-ibaadah/custom ([5]).

Therefore, the first pillar of fasting is incomplete without these two types: Sincerity for Allaah in this great act of worship, and differentiating the fasting by intending it to be as either Obligatory or Voluntary. And it is necessary that the intention for the obligatory fast be made in the night before the dawn, due to the hadeeth of Hafsah the Mother of the Believers (radiallah anha) that the Messenger of Allaah () said:
((مَنْ لم يُجْمِعِ الصيامَ قبل الفجر فلا صيام له))
((Whoever did not decide/intend to fast before Fajr then there is no fast for him)) ([6])

Therefore, it is necessary to form an intention of fasting the month of Ramadaan, hence, one should make an intention on the first night of Ramadaan: to fast the entire month, then after that he should make an intention each night to fast the following individual day of the month. Same goes with making up the obligatory fasts of Ramadaan, the fasting of expiations, and the fasting of Nazr. This is what accords with the apparent meaning of the hadeeth of Hafsah and other Sahaabah ([7]) ([8]).

Shaykh al-Imaam Ibn Baaz (rahimahullah) said: ((According to the most correct view, it is necessary to make an intention during the night as far as the obligatory fasting is concerned such as: the fasting of Ramadaan, the fasts of Nazr, and the fasts of Expiations.
So if someone makes an intention after the sunset or in the middle of the night or at the end of the night [before Fajr], it will suffice)) ([9])

Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) said: ((As for forming the intention, then it is not valid except when it is made during the night if it is an obligatory fast in which it is obligatory to observe abstinence from the beginning of the day, no matter it is a fast of a specifically defined time such as Ramadaan and a vow specific to a time, or it is not specified by a particular time such as the making up of missed fasts, and general fasting of nazr)) ([10])

Further, Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said:
((ومن خطر بقلبه أنه صائم غداً فقد نوى))
((If it crosses a person’s mind that he is going to fast tomorrow, then he has made the intention)) ([11])
Hence, making an intention is not something that involves an effort. So if a Muslim wakes up to eat Suhoor, or abstains from food, or it crosses his mind to fast tomorrow, then he has made the intention ([12]).

As for the voluntary fasting, then it is permissible even if its intention is made during the day ([13]) as long as one has not consumed or done something that breaks the fast since the time of Fajr ([14]) because its permissibility is proven from the Prophet (), due to the hadeeth of Aa’ishah (radiallah anha), she said: The Messenger of Allaah said to me one day:
((«يا عائشة، هل عندكم شيء؟» قالت: فقلت: يا رسول الله، ما عندنا شيء قال: «فإني صائم» قالت: فخرج رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فأهديت لنا هدية - أو جاءنا زور - قالت: فلما رجع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قلت: يا رسول الله، أهديت لنا هدية - أو جاءنا زور - وقد خبأت لك شيئا، قال: «ما هو؟» قلت: حيس، قال: «هاتيه» فجئت به فأكل، ثم قال: «قد كنت أصبحت صائما»))
(('Aa’ishah, do you have anything (to eat)? I said: 'Messenger of Allah, there is nothing with us. Thereupon he said: “Then I am observing fast”. She said: The Messenger of Allah () went out, and there was a present, for us and (at the same time) some visitors dropped in. When the Messenger of Allah () came back, I said to him: Messenger of Allah, a present was given to us, (and in the meanwhile) there came to us visitors (a major Portion of it has been spent on them), but I have saved something for you. He said: What is it? I said: It is hais (a compound of dates and clarified butter). He said: Bring that. So I brought it to him and he ate it and then said: I woke up in the morning observing fast.)) ([15])

And Umm Haani (radiallah anha) narrates:
أن رسول الله - صلى الله عليه وسلم - دخل عليها فدعا بشراب، فشرب ثم ناولها فشربت، فقالت: يا رسول الله أما إني كنت صائمة، فقال رسول الله - صلى الله عليه وسلم -: ((الصائم المتطوع أمينُ نفسه، إن شاء صام وإن شاء أفطر))
((The Messenger of Allaah entered upon her and asked for some drink, and he drank. Then he offered it to her and she drank it. Then she said: "O Messenger of Allah! I was fasting." So the Messenger of Allaah said: "The one fasting a voluntary fast is the trustee for himself; if he wishes he fasts, and if he wishes he breaks.")) ([16])

And what’s apparent is that it is permissible to form the intention of a voluntary fast whenever one wishes whether it is before the time of zawaal or after it.

Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullah said: ((The more correct view is that it is valid as it is narrated from the Sahaabah)) ([17]).

And he rahimahullah said: ((He may make an intention at any time he wishes, even if it is after the time of Zawaal. This is the most balance of opinions according to us and the one that is closest to the Sunnah of our Prophet Muhammad ())) ([18]).

And he said: ((It is narrated from Ahmad that this fast will be rewarded from the time the intention was formed.)) And he said that this is correct. ([19]), due to the saying of the Prophet (): ((Actions are rewarded but by the intentions)).
Similarly, Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen rahimahullah said: ((This is the most accurate opinion)) ([20]).

Second Pillar: Abstinence from all the things that break the fast, from the true dawn until the sun sets
Due to the saying of Allaah:
{فَالآنَ بَاشِرُوهُنَّ وَابْتَغُواْ مَا كَتَبَ الله لَكُمْ وَكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَكُمُ الْخَيْطُ الأَبْيَضُ مِنَ الْخَيْطِ الأَسْوَدِ مِنَ الْفَجْرِ ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّليْلِ}
{So now, have relations with them and seek that which Allah has decreed for you. And eat and drink until the white thread of dawn becomes distinct to you from the black thread [of night]. Then complete the fast until the sunset.} ([21])

What is meant by the white and black thread?
What this means is that Allaah has allowed those who are fasting to eat and drink at night until he is certain that dawn has come. What is meant by the white thread is the day, and the black thread is the night.
Al-Haafiz said: ((What the verse means is until the whiteness of day can be distinguished from the blackness of night. This happens when the true dawn appears.
The words “of dawn” serve to explain what is meant by “the white thread” and there is no need to explain what is meant by the black thread because explaining the one makes it clear what is meant by the other.))  End quote.

Some of the Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) understood the verse in a manner other than what it means. They thought that what was meant was a thread in the real sense. One of them would put two threads, one white and one black, beneath his pillow or tie them to his foot, and he would carry on eating until he could tell them apart. They misunderstood it because at first Allaah revealed the verse without the words “of dawn”, then after a while (some scholars say that it was after a year), Allaah revealed the verse with the words “of dawn”. Then they realized that what was meant by the white thread was the light of dawn (the day) and what was meant by the black thread was night.

Al-Bukhaari (1917) and Muslim (1091) narrated that Sahl ibn Sa’d said:
((The verse “and eat and drink until the white thread appears to you distinct from the black thread” [al-Baqarah 2:187] was revealed, and the words “of dawn” were not revealed. When people wanted to fast, one of them would tie a white thread and a black thread to his foot, then he would carry on eating until he could tell them apart when he looked at them. Then after that Allaah revealed the words, “of dawn,” then they realized that what was meant by that was night and day.))

The Sahaabah interpreted the word thread according to its apparent meaning, as they understood it, then when the words “of dawn” were revealed, they understood what was meant.

Al-Bukhaari (1916) narrated that ‘Adiyy ibn Haatim (radiallah anhu) said:
((When the words ‘until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night)’ [al-Baqarah 2:187 – interpretation of the meaning] were revealed, I took a black rope and a white rope and put them beneath my pillow, and I started to look at them during the night, but I could not see any distinction between them. The next morning I went to the Messenger of Allaah () and told him about that. He said, ‘Rather that is the blackness of the night and the whiteness of the day.’))

According to a report narrated by al-Bukhaari (4510) he said: ((You must be huge.)) According to another report (4509) he said: ((Your pillow must be very wide, if the white thread and the black thread are beneath your pillow.)) And according to another report: (4510) ((The back of your head must be very wide.))

The story of ‘Adiyy ibn Haatim occurred after Allaah had revealed the words “of dawn”, i.e., after the hadeeth of Sahl quoted above. Some of the scholars explained Adiyy’s mistake of misunderstanding the verse even though the words “of dawn” had been revealed, by noting that the hadeeth of Sahl had not reached ‘Adiyy’, or that in the dialect of his people the words “white thread” and “black thread” were not used to refer to day and night.

Hence Ibn Hibbaan commented on the hadeeth of ‘Adiyy by noting that “the language of the Arabs varies,” and pointed out that in the language of ‘Adiyy, the darkness of night and the light of day were not described as a black thread and white thread. Al-Qurtubi said: ((The hadeeth of ‘Adiyy is later than the hadeeth of Sahl. It is as if ‘Adiyy had not heard what was said in the hadeeth of Sahl, rather he only heard the verse and understood it as it sounded to him)).

Al-Haafiz said: ((As for ‘Adiyy, it is as if in the language of his people they did not refer to the dawn as a thread, or he forgot the words “of dawn” until the Prophet () reminded him of that))

With regard to the words of the Prophet (), ((The back of your head must be very wide)) some of them claimed that what the Prophet () meant by that was that he was unintelligent. They claimed that if the back of the head is wide, this is a sign of stupidity, and they wrote poetry about that. But many of the scholars rejected this, such as al-Qurtubi, al-Qaadi ‘Iyaad and al-Nawawi.

Al-Qurtubi said:
((Some people interpreted this as a criticism of him for that misunderstanding. It is as if they understood it as an accusation of ignorance and lack of understanding, but it is not as they say. Rather he meant – and Allaah knows best – if your pillow covers the two threads to which Allaah referred then it must be wide indeed. Hence immediately after that he said:  “Rather that is the blackness of the night and the whiteness of the day.”  It is as if he said: How can they fit under your pillow? And the words “The back of your head must be very wide” mean that the pillow which covers the night and day cannot be rested upon except by a head that is very wide)) ([22]) ([23]).

Distinguishing the True Dawn (Al-Fajr al-Saadiq) from the False Dawn (Al-Fajr al-Kaazib)
Note: The following discussion is taken from the article of Shaykh Muhammad Taqi ud-Deen al-Hilaali, named after this heading, who has done an excellent job in explaining the difference between true and false dawn with references from various Scholars of the past. I have tried to abridge this lengthy article to some extent by omitting some repetitive sayings and minor details and have tried to provide the necessary references and Tahqeeq of ahadeeth and athaar. He says:

If one wants to know the Islamic dawn, then he must do two things:

·        Firstly he must study the Prophet's () statements which differentiate between the false dawn and the true dawn, and then the statements of his companions, the second generation and the great Imams.
·        Secondly, he has to be from those people who are used to seeing the dawn, such as a Mu'adhdhin or a person who travels a lot in the desert.

To explain the first part, I am writing this book and calling it the explanation of the true dawn and distinguishing it from the false dawn through evidences.

To begin, we must explain what Allah Almighty said in Surah Al-Baqarah, verse 187: {Eat and drink until the white thread of dawn becomes distinct from the black.}

Al-Qasim narrates from 'A'ishah that the Messenger of Allah () said:
((Let the Adhaan of Bilaal not prevent you from your Suhur (pre-dawn meal) because he calls it in the night, so eat and drink until you hear the Adhaan of ibn Umm Maktum because he doesn't call the Adhan until the Fajr starts.)) ([24])

We understand from this narration and other narrations with similar meanings that the Prophet () used to have two people giving the Adhan during Ramadhan: one of them who could see, which was Bilal, and the other was a blind man known as ibn Umm Maktum. The Prophet () had appointed the Mu'adhdhin who could see to alert the people that the dawn was close and it used to be done at night, i.e. before the start of the Fajr, whereas he appointed the blind Mu'adhdhin to call for Fajr after the Fajr began. So what was the intention of the Prophet ()?

If we think about this with deficient minds it would seem apparent to us that the Mu'adhdhin that can see (i.e. Bilal) should do the last Adhan. He has more right to do so than the blind Mu'adhdhin, because he can see the beginning of dawn with his eyes and call the Adhan on time in order that the people will stop eating and drinking from the beginning of Fajr. The blind Mu'adhdhin should be the one who calls the people during the night so that they will know simply when the dawn is close by.

But the Prophet () did the opposite; he appointed the blindman as the caller of the Adhan to prohibit food and drink and the start of the Salah. He therefore intended – without doubt – to make things easier for his nation and not harder. So whoever makes things restricted and difficult when Allah and His Messenger have made then easy and spacious, then he is in the wrong.

The statement of Allah, subhanahu wa ta'ala: {Until it becomes distinct}, is in agreement with the statement of the Prophet because He did not say until the dawn comes out, but He said until you people can see it clearly in a way that no one has doubt about it and the explanation of that will come shortly, insha'Allah.

In a narration by Bukhari and Muslim, it states: ((' ... so eat and drink until ibn Umm Maktum calls the Adhan,' and he was blind, and would not call the Adhan until it was said to him 'It's morning! It's morning!')) ([25])

In another hadeeth, Imam Ahmad said: and he mentioned the chain from Qays ibn Talq from his father that the Messenger of Allah () said: ((The dawn is not that which is vertical in the sky but it is that which is red and horizontal)). This is also narrated by At-Tirmidhi. His narration states: ((Eat and drink and don't worry about the clear vertical (dawn), but eat and drink until you see the red and horizontal (dawn/light).)) ([26])

In another narration from Muhammad ibn Thawban – and a similar narration from Jaabir and Ibn Abbaas (radiallah anhum) - the Messenger of Allah () said: ((The dawn is of two types – one that is like the tail of the Sirhan which does not prohibit anything, and then the one that spreads across and covers the horizon. This (latter) is the one which permits the prayer and prohibits food.)) ([27])

(Muhammad Taqi ud-Din said:) The tail of the Sirhan means the tail of a wolf because it lifts up and becomes vertical, similar to the false dawn.

Another narration from 'Abdur-Razzaq with his chain of narration mentions from Ibn 'Abbaas (radiallah anhu) that he said: ((There are two dawns. As for the one which is clear in the sky, that doesn't permit or prohibit anything. But the dawn that lights the top of the mountains is the one that prohibits drinking.)) ([28])

'Ata' said: ((As for that dawn that is clear and its light goes vertically to the sky, it does not prohibit drinking for the person, and the Salah is not allowed based on it and the Hajj is not missed because of it. But if it is spread across the top of the mountains, then drinking is prohibited and the Hajj is missed.)) ([29])

(Muhammad Taqi ud-Din said) The meaning of 'the Hajj being missed' is that the person who is doing Hajj but misses standing at 'Arafah during the 9th day of Dhu'l-Hijjah and he stands during the night before the true Fajr, then his Hajj is correct. But if he reaches 'Arafah after the true dawn then there is no Hajj for him in that year."

(Muhammad Taqi ud-Din said) We understand from this hadith that the false dawn that precedes the true dawn, is pure white and it goes from the earth to the sky and that does not prohibit eating for a fasting person, nor does it permit the Fajr prayer. The true dawn, which is horizontal across the horizon, with redness, comes before the sunrise and this is the one which prohibits food and permits the prayer.

Zirr ibn Hubaysh narrates saying said: ((I had my Suhur, and I rushed to the mosque; I passed by the house of Hudhayfah, and I entered it. He commanded that his she-camel be milked and a pan to be heated, and he told me, 'Eat.' I replied, 'I want to fast.' He said, 'And I also want to fast.' We ate, and then we drank and then we came to the mosque and offered the prayer that had just started. Hudhayfah said, 'That's how the Messenger of Allah did with me [or 'That's how I did with the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam)].' I asked, 'After the dawn?' He said, 'After dawn, but the sun hadn't risen yet.')) ([30])

Ma'mar, Sulayman al-A'mash, Abu Mijlaz, and Al-Hakam ibn 'Utaybah all said that it is permissible to have Suhur as long as the sun doesn't rise. Their evidence was the hadith of Hudhayfah as mentioned by Imam At-Tirmidhi.

It is narrated from Ibn Jurayj: I said to 'Ata', ((Is it disliked to drink whilst I am at home and I don't know if the Fajr has started?" He said, "That isn't a problem, it is a doubt.)) ([31])

Ibn Abi Shaybah said, Abu Mu'awiyah told us from Al-A'mash from Muslim (al-Bateen) that he said, ((They did not used to consider the dawn as your dawn; they used to consider the dawn which filled the houses and roads.')) ([32])

Ma'mar used to delay his Suhur so much that the ignorant claimed his fast was invalid. ([33])

Sa'eed ibn Mansur, Ibn Abi Shaybah and Ibn Al-Mundhir narrated from Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq, with numerous chains, that he ordered the door to be closed so that he did not see the dawn. ([34])

Ibn Al-Mundhir narrated with an authentic chain from 'Ali (radiallah anhu) that he prayed Fajr, then he said, ((Now is the time when the black and white threads are distinguished.))  ([35])

This led Ibn Al-Mundhir to say: ((Some of them said that the meaning of the whiteness and the blackness of the dawn is when the whiteness spreads in the roads, streets, and houses.)) ([36])

He narrated with an authentic chain from Saalim ibn 'Ubayd al-Ashja'i (one of the companions of the Prophet) that Abu Bakr said to him, ((Go out and see if the dawn has begun.)) I looked and then came to him and told him, ((It has become white and clear.)) Then he said, ((Go out and see if the dawn has begun.)) I looked and replied, ((It has become horizontal.)) Then Abu Bakr said, ((Now give me my drink.)) ([37])

Ibn Hazm in Al-Muhalla (4/366) said: It is not obligatory, neither in Ramadhan, nor at any other time except when the second dawn becomes clear, and as long as it doesn't become clear then eating and drinking and intercourse is permissible. This is all in the case of the one who is in doubt that the dawn hasn't begun, or if he is sure that it has not begun. Then he mentioned the verse of Surah Al-Baqarah that we mentioned earlier. He said after that, and I quote:

((Because Allah Almighty made it permissible to have intercourse, eat and drink until we see clearly the dawn, Allah Almighty didn't say until the Fajr begins, and he didn't say until you have doubts about the Fajr. So it is not permissible for anyone to say or obligate the fast unless it becomes clear to that person.))

Then Abu Muhammad (Ibn Hazm) said: ((It is narrated with an authentic chain, that eating after the beginning of the dawn is permissible as long as the person who intends to fast has not clearly seen it.))

Then he mentioned with a chain to Zirr ibn Hubaysh that he said to Hudhayfah, ((What time did you have your Suhur with the Prophet ()?" He replied, "It was during the day but the sun had not come out yet.))

He also narrated, with his chain to Abu Hurayrah that he said, The Messenger of Allaah () said, ((If any of you hear the call to Salah and the cup in his hand, he should not put it down until he is full from it.')) Then Ibn Hazm narrated with his chain from Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq that he said, ((If two men look at the dawn and one of them has doubt, they should both eat until both of them clearly see it.))

He also narrated with his chain, to Salim ibn 'Ubayd that he said, ((Abu Bakr used to say to me, 'Stand up between me and the dawn until I have my Suhur.'))

Salim ibn 'Ubayd is Al-Ashja'i from the city of Al-Kufah and from the companions of the Messenger (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam), and this is one of the most authentic chains possible.

Then he (Ibn Hazm) narrated, with his chain from Abu Qilabah that Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq used to say, ((Close the door until we have our Suhur.)) Then he narrated from Hammad ibn Salamah from Abu Hurayrah, that he heard the call to the prayer whilst a cup was in his hand and he said, ((I acquired it by the Lord of the Ka'bah.))

He then narrated from Ibn Jarir, from Ibn ‘Abbas that he said, ((Allah permits drinking as long as you have doubts))

Then Ibn Hazm narrated from 'Ikrimah that Ibn 'Abbas said, ((I have doubts by Allah, give me something to drink.)) And he drank.

Then he narrated with his chain from Makhul al-Azdi, that he said, ((Ibn 'Umar took a container of Zamzam and said to two men, 'Has the dawn begun?' One of them said, 'It has began,' and the other said, 'No it hasn't,' so Ibn 'Umar drank.))

He narrated with his chain, from Habban ibn Al-Harith that he had his Suhur with 'Ali ibn Abi Talib and both of them intended to fast, and after he finished he told the Mu'adhdhin to do the Iqamah for the Salah.

He also narrated with his chain from Ibn Abi Shaybah from 'Amir ibn Matar that he said, ((I came to 'Abdullah ibn Mas'ud, in his house, and he took out for us his leftover Suhur. We had our Suhur with him and the Salah started. We came out and we prayed with him.))

It is narrated from Muhammad ibn 'Ali ibn Al-Husayn: ((Eat until the Fajr becomes clear to you.))

It is narrated from Al-Hasan said: ((Continue to eat as long as you are in doubt.))

It is narrated from Ibn Mijlaz: ((The high (light in the sky) is the false dawn but the true one is clear and horizontal.))

It is narrated from Ibrahim an-Nakha'i: ((The horizontal and red (light) permits the prayer and forbids food.))

'Ali (ibn Hazm) said, ((We have mentioned in this subject those who had their Suhur thinking it is night but it was day and they did not believe that they had to make it up.))

Abu Bakr, 'Umar, 'Ali, Ibn 'Umar, Ibn 'Abbas, Abu Hurayrah, Ibn Mas'ud, Hudhayfah, the Aunt of Khubayb, Zayd ibn Thabit and Sa'ad ibn Abi Waqqas are eleven Companions – it is not known from any other of the Companions that they differed with them on this, may Allah be pleased with all of them. The only thing we see is a weak narration on the authority of Makhul from Abu Sa'id al-Khudri but they never met one another (thus the narration is weak), and also on the authority of Yahya al-Jazari from Ibn Mas'ud but they also never met one another.

From the Tabi'in (the second successive generation after the Prophet) in support of the above: Muhammad ibn 'Ali, Abu Majliz, Ibrahim, Muslim, the students of Ibn Mas'ud, 'Ata', Al-Hasan al-Basri, Al-Hakam ibn 'Utaybah, Mujahid, 'Urwah ibn Az-Zubayr and Jabir ibn Zayd.

Abu Dawud also narrated from 'Abdullah ibn Mas'ud that he reported that the Messenger of Allah () said:

((Let not the Adhan of Bilal prevent you from your Suhur because he calls the Adhan in order that those of you who are awake (and praying) can now rest and those who are asleep can wake up; and the dawn is not like this.))
Yahya al-Qattan put his hands together and he pointed with his two fingers. This is narrated by Al-Bukhari and Muslim. ([38])

There are different opinions in this matter:

The first opinion has been articulated by Ishaq ibn Rahway who narrated from Waki' that he heard Al-A'mash say, ((If I was not afraid of becoming famous, I would pray Fajr then have my Suhur.)) Then Ishaq mentioned from Abu Bakr as-Siddiq and Hudhayfah similar to that, and then he said, ((They did not used to see any difference between the time for eating and the time for the obligatory prayer.)) This is the end of Ishaq's statement. This has also been narrated from Ibn Mas'ud. (So in summary, the first opinion is that one can eat and drink until just after Fajr has actually started, and not just that the time has "begun", but after the adhan and iqamah etc.)

The second opinion: most of the scholars are of the opinion that one is to stop the Suhur by the beginning of Fajr, and this is the opinion of the four Imams and most of the scholars of different countries and something of similar meaning has been narrated by 'Umar and Ibn 'Abbas.

The people with the first opinion have used the statement of the Prophet (), ((And eat and drink until ibn Umm Maktum gives the Adhan.)) It is known that he was not giving the Adhan until Fajr had already begun. That is in Al-Bukhari and in some narrations it states: ((He was a blind man and he was not giving the Adhan until it was said to him that, 'The Fajr has begun! The Fajr has begun!'))

These people say the day begins when the sun rises (meaning that one can eat into the Fajr time).

The majority on the other hand used the verse: {Eat and drink until the white thread of dawn becomes distinct from the black.} Also the statement of Muhammad (), ((Eat and drink until Ibn Umm Maktum gives the Adhan)) and his statement, ((There are two Fajrs: the first one does not prohibit food and does not permit the prayer and the second prohibits food and permits the prayer.)) Narrated by Al-Bayhaqi in his Sunan.

They also said that the hadith of Hudhayfah is faulty and that the fault is that it is Mawquf (a statement of a Companion alone), and that is Zirr is the one who had his Suhur with Hudhayfah. This was mentioned by An-Nasa'i.

(Muhammad Taqi ud-Din said) I don't agree with that, because Hudhayfah said, ((That's how I did it with the Messenger of Allah () )) and this is Marfu' (a statement/event elevated to the Prophet).


Out of all these ahadith, we give Fatwa based on the middle opinion (i.e. the second one): that the true dawn which prohibits food on the fasting person and permits the prayer is as the Prophet () said: the red dawn, the one that whose whiteness is mixed with some redness and is horizontal in the horizon. Any other dawn is false, it doesn't prohibit food on the fasting person and doesn't permit the Fajr prayer.

We ask Allah to show us the truth as truth and to help us to follow it and to show us the falsehood as falsehood and to help us to avoid it.

And all praise is due to the Lord of the Worlds.

Translated by Kehlan Al-Jubury, Manchester, Monday 25 June 2012CE ([39])

The Time of Iftaar:

As for the time of Iftaar, then it is indicated by the saying of Allaah:
{ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّليْلِ}
{ then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall [al-layl]} ([40])

So when the sun has set, the night has begun. What is meant by the setting of the sun is when the disk of the sun disappears completely beneath the horizon. This is indicated by the Qur'aan and Sunnah and definitive consensus of the Muslims.

Al-Haafiz Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said in his commentary on this verse: ((The words of Allah {then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall} imply that breaking the fast at the moment of sunset is a shar’i rule)) ([41]).

In fact some commentators have pointed out that the use of the preposition ila (till) in this verse also implies hastening, because that preposition indicates reaching the end and achieving the goal.

Al-‘Allaamah al-Taahir ibn ‘Ashoor (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

((Ila al-layl (till the nightfall) means until one achieves that goal and reaches the night, and the preposition ila is chosen to indicate that one should hasten to break the fast when the sun sets, because the preposition ila means that the purpose is achieved then, unlike the preposition hatta (until). What is meant here is to indicate that the fast is completed when the night begins)) ([42])

All of that is supported by what is narrated in al-Saheehayn from Ameer al-Mu'mineen ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: The Messenger of Allah () said: ((When the night comes from here and the day departs from here, and the sun sets, then it is time for the fasting person to break his fast)) ([43]).

In this hadeeth the coming of night from the east and the disappearance of the disk of the sun below the horizon are mentioned together, which is something that is well known, because darkness starts from the East as soon as the light of the sun disappears below the horizon. Al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

((The phrase “when night comes from here” means from the east, and what is meant is when darkness becomes discernible. In this hadeeth he mentioned three things, because even though they are interconnected in fact, they may appear not to be connected, and it may be thought that night is coming from the east when it has not yet come, because something is covering the light of the sun; the same is also true of the departure of day. Hence it is clarified by the words “and the sun sets”, as an indication that it is essential to confirm that night has come and day has gone, and that these events occur because of the setting of the sun and not for any other reason)) ([44]).

Al-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

((The scholars said: each of these three things implies the other two and is interconnected with them. Rather he mentioned them together because a person may be in a valley and the like in such a way that he cannot see the setting of the sun, so he relies on the coming of darkness and the disappearing of daylight)) ([45]).

Al-Bukhaari (1955) and Muslim (1101) narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Abi Awfa (radiallah anhu) said: ((We were with the Messenger of Allah () on a journey and he was fasting. When the sun set, he said to one of the people: O So and so, get up and make saweeq for us (mix it with water so that we can drink it). He said O Messenger of Allah, why not wait till the evening? He said: Dismount and make saweeq for us. He said: O Messenger of Allah, why not wait till the evening? He said: Dismount and make saweeq for us. He said: It is still day. He said: Dismount and make saweeq for us. So he dismounted and made saweeq for them, and the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) drank it, then he said: When you see that night has come from here, then let the fasting person break his fast))

Al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar (may Allah have mercy on him) said: ((This hadeeth indicates that it is mustahabb to hasten to break the fast and that it is not permissible to refrain from eating and drinking for any part of the night at all; rather as soon as it is established that the sun has set, it is permissible to break the fast)) ([46]).

Moreover, there is consensus among the Muslims regarding breaking the fast and eating as soon as one hears the muezzin give the call to Maghrib prayer when the sun disappears, and the one who goes against that is following something other than the way of the believers and has introduced something into the religion for which he has no proof or reports from the scholars.

Al-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: ((Maghrib comes immediately after the sun has set, and this is something on which there is consensus. Something concerning this was narrated from the Shi’ah to which no attention should be paid and which has no basis)) ([47]).

[1] - [See, Jaami’ al-Uloom wal-Hikam by Ibn Rajab (1/65)]
[2] - [Al-Bayyinah (98:5)]
[3] - [Agreed Upon: Al-Bukhaari (1, 2529, 54, 5070, 3898, 6689, 6953), Muslim (1907)]
[4] - [Al-Bukhaari (6607)]
[5] - [Yulian Purnama, “Sincerity in Deed”: http://en.muslim.or.id/]
[6] - [Abu Dawood (2454), Tirmidhi (730), Nasaa’ee (2332), Ibn Maajah (1700), Classed Saheeh by al-Albaani.]
[7] - [See, al-Mughni by Ibn Qudaamah (4/337), al-Muqni ma ash-Sharh al-Kabeer wal-Insaaf (7/395), Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa’imah (10/244-246), Majmoo Fataawa Ibn Baaz (15/251-252)]
[8] - [Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullah has mentioned that the Scholars have differed over when the niyyah can be formed in three different opinions:
First Opinion: It is permissible to make the intention before zawaal (i.e. the time of zuhr) for the fasting whether it is obligatory fasting or voluntary, due to the hadeeth of the fasting of the day of Aashoorah, and the hadeeth of the Prophet () coming to Aa’ishah (radiallah anha) to ask if there is any food, when she said no, he said ‘then I am fasting.’ This is the opinion of Abu Haneefah and a group of people with him.
Second Opinion: It is not permissible to make the intention except during the night (before dawn) no matter it is obligatory fasting or voluntary fasting, based on the apparent meaning of the hadeeth of Hafsah, Ibn Umar and others. This is the opinion of Maalik and a group of people with him.
Third Opinion: For the obligatory fasting, it is not permissible but to make an intention during the night (before dawn) as denoted by the hadeeth of Hafsah and Ibn Umar; And as for the voluntary fasting, then it is permissible to form its intention during the day as denoted by the words of the Prophet upon being told that there is no food, “Then I am fasting”. This is the opinion of Ahmad and Shaafi’ee and a group of people with them. This is because the scope of voluntary acts of worship is wider than that of the obligatory ones, just like in the obligatory prayers, it is obligatory and one of the pillars of prayer to do qiyaam (standing), and Istiqraar on the floor, but it is not obligatory to do so in the voluntary prayers, as a concession from Allaah for His slaves.
As for the argument that the hadeeth of the people being commanded to observe the fast of ‘Aashoora during the day was in fact an obligatory fasting at that time, then it is said that even though that fast was an obligatory fast, but it only got obligatory upon them during the day because they did not used to observe it before that…
Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “This is the most balance of all opinions, meaning, the opinion of Shaafi’ee and Ahmad.”
Majmoo Fataawa Ibn Taymiyyah (25/119-121), see: Kitaab as-Siyaam min Sharh Umdat al-Ahkaam by Ibn Taymiyyah (1/175-206), Al-Mughni by Ibn Qudaamah (4/338-339), Al-Muqni’ ma ash-Sharh al-Kabeer wal-Insaaf (7/390-391)]
[9] - [As-Siyaam fil Islaam by Shaykh al-Qahtaani (P. 100)]
[10] - [Sharh al-Umdah by Ibn Taymiyyah (1/176)]
[11] - [al-Ikhtiyaaraat (p. 191) from Islamqa.info]
[12] - [And if he is unsure of the first day of Ramadaan, for example, and says: “If tomorrow is Ramadaan, then it will be my obligatory fast, otherwise, it will be a voluntary fast” the Scholars have differed over the validity of this intention. The issue is, does he have to intend to fast specifically for Ramadaan, or is it sufficient for him to have the intention of fasting, whether he intends it as an obligatory or naafil fast? 
The majority of Maalikis, Shaafa’is and Hanbalis are of the view that he has to stipulate that he intends to fast for Ramadaan.
The Hanafis are of the view that he does not have to have a specific intention. This was also narrated from Ahmad.
Based on this view, the fast of one who says “If tomorrow is Ramadaan then this is my obligatory fast” is valid.
It says in al-Insaaf (3/295): If his intention is “If tomorrow is Ramadaan it will be my obligatory fast otherwise it will be a naafil fast,” this is not valid. This is our view and it is the view of the majority of our companions. This is based on the fact that it is essential to form a specific opinion. It was narrated from Imam Ahmad that this is valid, and this is based on a report that says it is not essential to form a specific intention in the case of Ramadaan. This view was favored by Shaykh al-Islam Taqiy al-Deen. It says in al-Faa’iq: This was supported by the author of al-Muharrar and by our Shaykh, and it is the favored view. End quote.
See: al-Bahr al-Raa’iq, 2/280; Majma’ al-Anhaar, 1/233; Mughni al-Muhtaaj, 2/150; al-Mughni, 3/9; al-Mawsoo’ah al-Fiqhiyyah, 5/165, 28/22.
Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said in al-Ikhtiyaaraat (P. 159): “Making a conditional intention, such as his saying, (If tomorrow is Ramadaan then it is my obligatory fasting otherwise it is my voluntary fast) is valid, and this is one of the narrations from Imaam Ahmad
Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen also favored the view of Ibn Taymiyyah in that stipulating such an intention is valid and he took evidence from the general meaning of the words of the Prophet () to Dubaa’ah bint al-Zubayr: “Go for Hajj, and stipulate that if you are prevented from continuing, you will exit ihraam at that point and Allaah will accept whatever you stipulate.”
See: Al-Sharh al-Mumti’ (6/374-376), taken from islamqa.info, Fatwa # 70479]
[13] - [See: Al-Mughni by Ibn Qudaamah (4/340), Al-Muqni ma ash-Sharh al-Kabeer wal-Insaaf (7/403), Majmoo’ Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa’imah (10/244), Majmoo Fataawa Ibn Baaz (15/252)]
[14] - [The Scholars have differed regarding the time of the intention for voluntary fasting, over two opinions:
First Opinion: According to the opinion of Ahmad, Abu Haneefah, and Shaafi’ee, it is permissible to make the intention for a voluntary fast during the day. However, the madhab of Imaam Ahmad is that it is permissible to make the intention anytime whether before the zawaal or after it. And this is also the opinion of Shaafi’ee.
But as for the Madhab of Abu Haneefah, then it does not permit making its intention after the time of Zawaal during the day, and it is also famous as one of the narrations from Shaafi’ee and it is also narrated in a narration from Ahmad.
Shaykh al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “What appears to be correct is that this is valid, as is narrated from the Sahaabah”, meaning, it is valid to make the intention of a voluntary fast after the time of zawaal. Majmoo al-Fataawa (25/119) & Sharh al-Umdah (1/186-192)
Second Opinion: According to the opinion of Imaam Maalik and a group of people with him: it is not permissible to make the intention of a voluntary fast except during the night just like an obligatory fast, due to the apparent meaning of the hadeeth of Hafsah and Ibn Umar. See: Al-Mughni (4/340, 341), Al-Muqni’ wash-Sharh al-Kabeer wal-Insaaf (7/403-405), & Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (25/120)]
[15] - [Saheeh Muslim (1154)]
[16] - [Tirmidhi (731, 732), Abu Dawood (2456), Classed Saheeh by al-Albaani]
[17] - [Majmoo al-Fataawa (25/120)]
[18] - [Sharh al-Umdah (1/192), and this is supported by the act of Huzayfah (radiallah anhu) as well, as it is narrated by Ibn Abi Shaybah (2/290) & Abdur Razzaaq (4/274) & al-Bayhaqi in al-Kubra (4/204) & At-Tahaawi in Sharh al-Ma’aani (2/56) that: “Huzayfah began his fast after the sun had passed its zenith”. Its chain is Saheeh. And in another narration, a similar opinion is also narrated from Ibn Mas’ood (radiallah anhu)]
[19] - [Majmoo al-Fataawa (25/121), Sharh al-Umdah (1/194)]
[20] - [Ash-Sharh al-Mumti’ (6/373)]
[21] - [Al-Baqarah (2:187)]
[22] - [See: Fath al-Baari, commentary on hadeeth no. 1917 and 1916’ Sharh Muslim by al-Nawawi, hadeeth no. 1090, 1091]
[23] - [This whole discussion is taken from Islamqa.info, Fatwa # 50120]
[24] - [Al-Bukhaari (1919), Muslim (1092)]
[25] - [Al-Bukhaari (617, 620, 623, 1918, 2656, 7228) & Muslim (1091)]
[26] - [Musnad Ahmad (16291), Tirmidhi (705)]
[27] - [Tafseer at-Tabari (3/514)]
[28] - [Musannaf Abdur Razzaaq (4765), Al-Haakim (1/91), authenticated by al-Albaani, and it has a shaahid from the hadeeth of Ibn Umar in Saheeh Ibn Khuzaymah (356)]
[29] - [Musannaf Abdur Razzaaq (4765), Isnaad Saheeh]
[30] - [Sharh Ma’aani ul-Athaar (3165), Musnad Ahmad (23361), Musannaf Abdur Razzaaq (7606), Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah (8935), Saheeh]
[31] - [Musannaf Abdur Razzaaq (7371), Saheeh]
[32] - [Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah (9075), Chain Saheeh]
[33] - [Al-Muhalla by Ibn Hazm (4/373)]
[34] - [Fath ul-Baari (4/136), Musannaf Abdur Razzaaq (7618), Al-Muhalla (4/371)]
[35] - [Fath ul-Baari (4/136)]
[36] - [Fath ul-Baari (4/137)]
[37] - [Ibid]
[38] - [Sunan Abu Dawood (2347), Classed Saheeh by al-Albaani]
[39] - [The full text can be seen here: http://sunnahonline.com/library/fiqh-and-sunnah/732-distinguishing-the-true-dawn-from-the-false-dawn
Arabic version: http://www.ajurry.com/vb/showthread.php?t=11349]
[40] - [Al-Baqarah (2:187)]
[41] - [Tafseer al-Qur’aan al-‘Azeem, 1/517]
[42] - [Al-Tahreer wa’l-Tanweer, 1/181]
[43] - [Narrated by al-Bukhaari (1954) and Muslim (1100)]
[44] - [Fath al-Baari, 4/196]
[45] - [Sharh Muslim, 7/209]
[46] - [Fath al-Baari, 4/197]
[47] - [Sharh Muslim, 5/136]

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