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You Are Here: Knowledge Base Acts of Worship and their Rulings Fasting and Ramadaan

Actions which Nullify the Fast and Require al-Qadha

Meaning of al-Qadaa (atonement) and its Rulings:
Al-Qadaa is making up missed fasts of Ramadaan with similar number of fasts on days other than Ramadaan.

It is not obligatory to make al-Qadaa immediately after Ramadaan. Al-Qadaa for the missed fasts of Ramadaan may be delayed until the next Ramadaan as is known from Aa'isha (radhi allahu anha), who relates, "It used to be that I had days to make up for Ramadaan and I would not be able to do so except in Shabaan (the month before Ramadaan)." [Saheeh al-Bukharee (4/166) and Saheeh Muslim (no. 1146)] 

Al-Hafidh (rahimahullah) says in al-Fath (4/191), "The (above) Hadeeth contains proof for allowance of delaying al-Qadaa of missed Ramadaan fasts unrestrictedly, with or without any excuse."

Although, it is better to hasten in making up the missed fasts than to delay them, since this falls under the general command of hastening to do good deeds and not delaying them, such as the saying of Allah in the Qur'aan, "And march forth in the way (which leads to) forgiveness from your Lord, and for Paradise as wide as are the heavens and the earth, prepared for al-Muttaqoon (the pious)." [Soorah al-Imran, (3): 133]

It is also not obligatory to make up the days together (i.e. one immediately after the other). Allah, the Exalted, says, "The same number (of days which one did not fast must be made up) from other days." [Soorah al Baqarah (2): 185] 

Ibn Abbas (radhi allahu anhu) said, "There is no harm if one fasts them separately." [(mu'allaq) Saheeh al-Bukharee (4/189)] See, Taghleequt-Ta'leeq (3/186)] And Abu Hurayrah (radhi allahu anhu) said, "One may fast them together if he wishes." [(saheeh) Daaraqutnee, al-Irwa (4/95)]

However, it is not permissible to postpone al-Qadaa fasts until after the next Ramadan without a legal excuse like, continuous illness, nursing mothers, etc.

If one does not make al-Qadaa of the missed fasts until the next Ramadaan, then he should make al-Qadaa and feed a poor person for each day. Abu Hurayrah (radhi allahu anhu) narrates concerning a person who falls sick and thus breaks his fast and does not make al-Qadaa of his missed fasts until the next Ramadaan arrives, "He should fast the present Ramadaan, and then make al-Qadaa for the missed fasts of the previous Ramadaan and feed a poor person for each missed fast. [Reported by Daraqutni]

Guidelines concerning Things that Break the Fast

On the following page, are mentioned things, which nullify the fast. All of them, apart from menses and nifas, only invalidate the fast if three conditions are met:

= The person was aware of the ruling and not ignorant of it. If he does not know the ruling then it does not break his fast, because Allah says: "And there is no sin on you concerning that in which you made a mistake, except in regard to what your hearts deliberately intend." [Soorah al-Ahzab (33): 5]

= The person did it knowingly and not out of forgetfulness. The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "My Ummah is forgiven for mistakes and forgetfulness and for what they are forced to do." Similar is the case of the person, who does something that breaks the fast, thinking that it does not break the fast.

= The person did it by choice and not due to force. The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said: "My Ummah is forgiven for mistakes and forgetfulness and for what they are forced to do." See, Fatawa Shaikh Ibn Uthaimeen (vol. 1, p. 508)

Eating and Drinking Intentionally: It is well known that fasting is abstaining from eating and drinking, therefore, if one eats or drinks deliberately and in full consciousness, he is obliged to make al-Qadaa for the sin he committed. However, he, who eats or drinks accidentally or out of forgetfulness or is forced, nothing is required from him.

The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said, "If one of you eats and drinks out of forgetfulness, then let him complete his fast (maintain his fast for the rest of the day) for it was indeed Allah, Who gave him food and drink." [Saheeh al-Bukharee (41135) and Saheeh Muslim (no. 1155)] Thus, while eating or drinking, if one remembers that he is fasting, he must immediately stop and spit out any food still present in his mouth and continue his fast.

Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said, "Allah has excused for my Ummah mistakes, forgetfulness and what they are forced to do." [(Saheeh) ad-Daraqutnee (4/171) from Ibn Abbas]

Anything that Comes Under the Same Heading as Eating and Drinking also invalidates the fast. This includes two things,
1. Transfusion of blood to the fasting person invalidates the fast because blood is formed from food and drink.
2. Nourishment via needle as in the case of a drip or injections intended for nourishment or substitute for food will render the fast invalid.

Vomiting Intentionally: Whoever vomits deliberately by sticking his finger in his throat, pressing his stomach, deliberately smelling something nasty or persisting in looking at something that makes him vomit, has to make al-Qadaa.

Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said, "Whoever has an attack of vomiting, then no atonement is required of him, but whoever vomits intentionally then let him make atonement for it." [Abu Dawood (2/310), at-Tirmidhee (3/79), Ibn Majah (1/536) and Musnad Ahmad (2/498). Its isnaad is saheeh as Shaikhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said in Haqeeqat as-Siyaam (p. 14).]

Menstruation and Post-Natal Bleeding, When a woman begins to menstruate (haid) or begins afterbirth bleeding (nifas) during the fasting hours of Ramadaan, whether it is at the start of the fast or a moment before sunset; her fast is nullified. She must make up for that day and the rest of the days until she is pure again, and if she were to continue fasting during her days of menstruation, it would not count, for the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said, "Is it not that when she gets her period, she does not pray or fast?" [Saheeh al-Bukharee (304)] 

The order of al-Qadaa is known by the following Hadeeth in which a woman asked Aa'isha (radhi allahu anha), "Why is it that the menstruating woman has to make up her fasts but not the prayers?" She (radhi allahu anha) said, "We were ordered to make up the fasts and were never ordered to make up the prayers." [Saheeh al-Bukharee (4/429) and Saheeh Muslim (no. 335)]

Blood that Invalidates Fasting
= If the blood comes out as a result of a person's action or choice and its amount is large and has an effect on the person's body, then this invalidates his fast (such as donating blood). One should make up that day (so as to avoid an area of scholarly dispute and be on the safe side and be sure that he has fulfilled his obligation).

= If the blood comes out as the result of a person's actions or choice and its amount is small and it does not harm the person, then it does not invalidate the fast, such as the small amount of blood that is taken for testing.

= If the blood comes out as a result of no deliberate action, such as an accident or nosebleed or an injury to any part of the body, the fast is still valid even if the amount of blood is large.

= If the blood that comes out as a result of no deliberate action and is of such a large amount that the person becomes weak and unable to fast, then it is permissible for him to break his fast and he should fast another day to make up for it.

= The blood of menstruation (haid) and post-natal bleeding (nifas) invalidates the fast for the women, she must make up for that day and rest of the days until she is pure again. See, Fatawa Islamiyyah, 2/132 and al-Lajnah al-Daa'imah li'l-Buhooth al-'Ilmiyyah wa'l-Ifta, 10/263

The Ruling on Using Pills that Postpone Menstruation Period

"It is preferable for a woman to keep to her natural cycle and to accept that which Allah has decreed for her, and not take any medicine to prevent her period. She should accept what Allah has decreed for her of not fasting during her period, and make up those days later on. This is what the mothers of the believers and the women of the Salaf used to do." Fatawa al-Lajnah al-Daimah (10/151)

Note: It has been medically proven that these means of preventing menstruation are harmful and many women have suffered menstrual irregularities as a result.

I did not Fast Ramadaan, Without any Physical Excuse
Allamah Ibn Baz (rahimahullah) replied, "It is necessary upon you to make up that month in which you did not fast, while, at the same time, repenting and seeking Allah's forgiveness. You must also feed a poor person for every day the amount of half a sa' of the staple food of dates, rice or other such foods, if you have the ability to do so. If you are poor and do not have the ability to do so, then there is nothing upon you besides the making up of the fast." 'Fatawa on Fasting, Zakaat and Taraweeh,' Published by Darussalam

Taken from As-Sunnah Newsletter