Holding the Mus-haf during salaah

Question: I carry a copy of the Qur’an while offering Salah (Prayer) behind the Imam (the one who leads congregational Prayer). It should be noted that I concentrate much and my mind does not go astray, and the moves I make in Salah are only for opening and closing the Qur’an. Is this permissible? I hope you will explain the issue!

Answer: The Ma’mum (a person being led by an Imam in Prayer) has to listen attentively to the recitation of the Imam and contemplate the Words of Allah they are hearing. They should not be distracted by anything as Allah (Exalted be He) says:

listen to it, and be silent that you may receive mercy. [Surah Al-A`raf, 7:204]

Imam Ahmad (may Allah be merciful to him) said that religious scholars agreed by consensus that this Ayah is about listening to the recitation of the Qur’an in Salah. holding a copy of the Qur’an while offering Salah behind the Imam for the sake of following the Imam causes the person to make repeated moves which distracts the people offering Salah around them. This may affect the perfection of submission and humbleness to Allah in Salah, so it is prescribed to abandon it.

May Allah grant us success! May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions!

[Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta’, 5/383]

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The age at which a child is obligated to fast

Question: When does it become obligatory for the child to fast, and what is the age limit?

Answer: A child is ordered to pray when he reaches the age of seven, and beat them to do so at the age of ten, and it becomes obligatory upon him when he reaches puberty. And puberty is determined by:

1) Excretion of sperm due to (sexual) arousing;
2) Appearance of pubic hair around the private parts;
3) Having wet dreams, if sperm is excreted;
4) Reaching the age of fifteen years.

And similar is the case for a female, in addition to her coming on her menses.
The source for the aforementioned is what Imaam Ahmad and Abu Daawood have related on the authority of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam):

«Order your children to pray at seven and beat them to pray at ten, and separate them from each other in bed».

Also, ‘Aa.ishah (radhi-yallaahu ‘anhaa) related on the authority of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam):

«The pen (of obligation) has been lifted for three (individuals): the sleeper until he awakens, the young child until he reaches puberty, and the mentally ill until he comprehends».

And with Allaah lies all success and may Allaah send prayers and salutations upon our Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) and his family and his companions.

The Permanent Committee for Academic Research and Fataawa, comprising:
Head: Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez Ibn ‘Abdullaah Ibn Baaz;
Deputy Head: Shaykh ‘Abdur-Razzaaq ‘Afeefee;
Member: Shaykh ‘Abdullaah Ibn Ghudayyaan;
Member: Shaykh ‘Abdullaah Ibn Qu’ood

[Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 1, Page 233, Fatwa No.177; Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa.imah lil-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa. – Fatwa No. 1787]

Published: 6 December 2000

The fast of one who does not pray

Question: We need to know the ruling about the fast of one who does not pray (obligatory prayers)?

Answer: One who does not pray, (then) his fast is not correct and it is not acceptable from him. This is because the one who does not pray is a kaafir and apostate (murtad), as Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says:

{But if they repent, offer prayers perfectly and give zakaah, then they are your brethren in religion} [Soorah at-Towbah, Aayah 11].

And also the statement of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam):

«The agreement which is between us and them is the salaah, so he who leaves it has disbelieved».

…and also His (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) saying:

«Between the man and shirk and kufr is leaving the salaah».

And certainly this is the statement of the general Companions, if it is not a concensus amongst them. ‘Abdullaah Ibn Shaqeeq (rahimahullaah) who was amongst the prominent Taabi’oon said: «The Companions of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) did not see the leaving off of any actions to be kufr except the prayer». And based upon this, if a person was to fast whilst he did not pray, then his fast is rejected and unacceptable and there is no benefit for him in front of Allaah on the Day of Judgement. And we say to him: Pray then fast, as for fasting and not praying then your fast is rejected because (any) act of worship is not acceptable from a kaafir.

[Shakyh Ibn al-‘Uthaymeen, Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 2, Page 751, Fatwa No. 763; Fiqh al-Ibaadaat libni ‘Uthaymeen – Page 178-179]

Published: 31 December 1999

Does one who does not fast become a disbeliever (kaafir)?

Question: Is the one who does not fast, even though he is not ill or anything, become a kaafir, despite performing his (obligatory) prayers?

Answer: One who does not fast because he rejects it’s obligation then he is a kaafir by concensus. As for one who does not fast because he is lazy and negligent then he does not become a kaafir, however he is in great danger due to his leaving off a pillar from the pillars of Islaam upon which their obligation has been agreed.

And with Allaah lies all the success, and may Allaah send prayers and salutations upon our Prophet Muhammad (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) and his family and his companions.

The Permanent Committee for Islaamic Research and Verdicts, comprising –
Head: Shaykh ‘Abdul ‘Azeez ibn Abdullaah ibn Baaz;
Deputy Head: Shaykh ‘Abdur-Razzaaq ‘Afeefee;
Member: Shaykh ‘Abdullaah Ibn Qu’ood
Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 2, Page 748, Fatwa No.759;
Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa.imah lil-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa. – Fatwa No.6060

Published: 30 December 1999

The menstruating and post-partum bleeding woman eating during the day

Question: Is the menstruating and post-partum bleeding woman allowed to eat and drink during the day in Ramadhaan?

Answer: Yes, she can eat and drink during the day in Ramadhaan, however, it is better if this is done out of sight (of others), particularly since if they have a child at home then this would cause problems for them (in having to explain their condition)

[Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, Fataawa Muhimmah li-Nisaa. al-Ummah – Page 66]

Published: 30 October 2003

Sun does not set until late, so when should we break our fast

Question: We live in a land in which the sun does not set until 21:30 (09:30pm) or 22:00 (10:00pm), so when should we break our fast?

Answer: Break your fast when the sun has set. So long as you have a night and day in 24 hours, it is obligatory that you fast even if the day is long.

[Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 1, Page 212, Fatwa No.155]

Published: 21 November 1999

Nothing but water to break the fast

Question: If a person is fasting during Ramadhaan and is travelling to another country and he does not have anything except water, what does he do?

Answer: If a person is fasting and the sun sets and he does not find anything to break his fast with except water, then he should break his fast with the water because breaking the fast with fresh or dried dates is preferable but not obligatory.

And with Allaah lies all the success, and may Allaah send prayers and salutations upon our Prophet Muhammad (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) and his family and his companions.

The Permanent Committee for Islaamic Research and Verdicts, comprising –
Head: Shaykh ‘Abdul ‘Azeez ibn Abdullaah ibn Baaz;
Deputy Head: Shaykh ‘Abdur-Razzaaq ‘Afeefee;
Member: Shaykh ‘Abdullaah Ibn Ghudayyaan
Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 1, Page 188, Fatwa No.128;
Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa.imah lil-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa. – Fatwa No. 11803

Published: 17 December 1999