Ramadhaan – A Date with Dr. Zakir

 

Episode 31

 

Voluntary Fasts and Prohibited Fasts

 

(Duration – 48 minutes)

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dear Brothers and sisters in Islam and Humanity, Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh. May the peace, the mercy and the blessings of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) be on all of you. Welcome to the show ‘Ramadhaan - A Date with Dr. Zakir.’ I am your host, Yusuf Chambers, and today we will be discussing the topic ‘Voluntary Fasts and Prohibited Fasts’. Dr Zakir, Assalamualaikum!

 

Dr. Zakir: Walaikum Assalam Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dr. Zakir, the first question I’d like to pose to you is, are there any other fasts other than the obligatory fasts in Islam? 

 

Dr. Zakir: Alhamdulillah was salaatu was salaam ala rasoolillah wa ala aalihi wa ashaabihi wa ajma’een. Amaa Ba’ad

 

A’uzu billahi minash shaytan nir-rajeem,

Bismillah hirrahman nirraheem, 

 

Rabbish rahli Şadri Wa Yassir Li 'Amri Wa Ahlul `Uqdatan Min Lisani Yafqahu Qawli  

 

In Islam the deeds and the actions, they are divided into 2 types. One is the obligatory known as the Fard and the other is the voluntary that is known as optional. Same thing in fast also we have the obligatory fasts known as the Fard Fasts and the voluntary fasts known as Tattavoo. 

 

Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) has made certain deeds and actions Fard for all the Muslims. This is the minimum requirement for every Muslim to fulfill, for every believer to complete and ancillary to it by the grace of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala), He has kept things which are voluntary so that we get more Sawab, we get more blessings and it can even compensate and repair and fulfill some of the obligatory things which we have missed or some mistakes we do. So Alhamdulillah, it is a grace of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala), the mercy of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) that he has made things which are voluntary which give more chance to compensate for things we have missed and more chances to go to Jannah. 

 

So similarly in the pillar of fasting we have the obligatory fast as well as the voluntary fast known as Tattavoo.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay, thank you in that case could you actually highlight or mention what are the voluntary fasts as recommended by the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam)?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as voluntary fasts are concerned besides the days which are Fard to fast that’s the month of Ramadhaan and those days which are prohibited to fast. A Muslim can fast on any other day for the full year but there are certain days which the Prophet had recommended where a Muslim if he fasts is more preferable and he’ll get more Sawaab. 

 

First is fasting in the month of Muharram especially Ashura

No. 2 is fasting on the day of Arafat 

No. 3 is Fasting during the first 10 days of the month of Dhul Hajj

No. 4 Fasting in the month of Shawwal 

No. 5 is fasting in the month of Sha’baan 

No. 6 is fasting during the forbidden months, Ashurul Huroom, the forbidden months 

No. 7 is fasting on the Aiyam-ul-beed that’s 3 days in a month 13th, 14th and 15th of every month 

No. 8 is fasting on Mondays and Thursdays and
 No. 9 is fasting on alternate days of the year.

 

So these are the 9 types of fast which the Prophet had especially recommended.

 

Yusuf Chambers: So 9 different categories could you tell us which are the most important of all the voluntary fasts?

 

Dr. Zakir: The most important of all the voluntary fast is fasting in the month of Muharram especially the Ashura that’s the 10th day of Muharram. And the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said, its mentioned in a Hadith of 

 

Sahih Muslim Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2612 

 

“Where a person asks the Prophet that which is the most important of the prayers after the prescribed prayers, after the Fard prayers? And which is the most important Fast after the Fard fast, after the fast in the month of Ramadhaan? Prophet replied “the most important prayer after the Fard prayers is the prayer at night and the most important fast after the fast in Ramadhaan is fasting in Muharram”. Fasting in the month of Muharram is the most important and our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) further said, 

 

Its mentioned in the Hadith of Tirmidhi in the book of Fasting Hadith no. 752, the beloved Prophet said that 

 

“Whoever fasts on the day of Ashura it is expiation of his sins for the previous years”

 

The old sins done in the previous year, it will be expiated. 

Another Hadith of Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2004, it says that 

 

“Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him), he says that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) when he reached Madinah, he asked the Jews who used to fast on the 10th day of Muharram that why do you fast on the 10th day of Muharram so they replied that the Bani Israel got the freedom from the enemies and Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) gave them freedom on this day and Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) he fasted on this day. So Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) replied that we have more right over Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) than you do and he commanded the Muslims that they should fast on the 10th of Muharram i.e. Ashura.”

 

There is another Hadith in Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2439 where 

 

“Ibn Abbas says (may Allah be pleased with him) that when Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that the Muslims should fast on the 10th of Muharram on the day of Ashura, some of the Sahabas who were the companions of the Prophet came and told him that this is the day which is celebrated by the Jews, its an important day for them. So Prophet said next year, InshaAllah, we will also fast on the 9th. But unfortunately the Prophet did not live to see the next year, he expired before that”

 

It’s mentioned in Sunan Nasai Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2416 that 

 

“The Prophet did not miss 4 things 

No. 1 is Fasting on the day of Ashura 

No. 2 Fasting the first 10 days Dhul Hajj 

No.3 fasting 3 days every month, Aiyam-ul-Beed and 

Praying the Sunnat Salaah before the Fajr Salaah.”

So based on this we come to know that it’s very good to fast on Ashura i.e. the 10th day of Muharram but to be different than the Jews it’s preferable that you fast on the 9th also. So the best is to fast on the 9th and the 10th but even if someone fasts on the 10th only, scholars say it’s fine, some scholars say that you can also fast on the 10th and the 11th to be different than the Jews.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay, Thank you very much Dr. Zakir. Dr. Zakir could you outline the significance of fasting on the day of Arafa and could you also tell us is it recommended that the pilgrims also join in the fast of Arfafa?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as fasting on the day of Arafa is concerned the day of Arafa is one the 9th day of Dhul Hajj where all the pilgrims, they gather on the field of Arafa and they pray to Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) that its the time when Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) listens to the prayers of the Muslims who are at the Hajj at the ground of Arafa, that’s the reason when the pilgrims are praying to Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala), all the Muslims throughout the world and they join them in the way of fasting wherever they are and its mentioned in 

 

Sahih Muslim Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2603 

 

“A person asked the Prophet that what is the significance of fasting on the 9th of Dhul Hajj i.e. on the day of Arafa, the Prophet says anyone who fasts on the day of Arafa on the 9th of Dhul Hajj, 2 years of his sins will be expiated i.e. one year that is the preceding year and one is the following year. The next person asks that what is the reason for fasting on the day of Ashura i.e. the 10th of Muharram, the Prophet replied fasting on the day of Ashura expiates the sins of the previous year is the main reason is so the main reason that you fast on the day of Arafah is that it expiates the sins of 2 years, the previous year as well as the following year and there was a misunderstanding some people think that they should not fast on the day of Arafah because there are Hadith talking about that but this is specifically for the people e who are performing Hajj.

 

And there is a Hadith mentioned in Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1988 

“Where when the Prophet performed Hajj he companions were wondering whether the Prophet was fasting or not so there were doubts amongst the companions so one lady, she offers a glass of milk to the Prophet when he was riding the camel, the Prophet drinks the milk… Indicating that he was not fasting.”

 

So this is particularly for the people who were performing Hajj when they are in the day of Arafah, they should not fast, the reason is Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) does not want to overburden them because as it is they are performing Hajj and taking all the troubles so additional trouble is not required, 

 

Allah says in the Qur’an in Surah Baqarah ch. 2 verse no. 286 that 

 

“Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) lay on a person a burden greater than he or she can bear”

 

And furthermore since the people are traveling in Hajj they are traveling so as it is for a traveler fasting is exempted so that’s the reason who is performing Hajj, who is performing pilgrimage for him or her, fasting is prohibited but for the other Muslims throughout the world they should fast on the day of Arafa.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Certainly there is a good reason for tem to fast. I mean if they have any explications of sins for 2 years, that’s good enough for me. SubhanAllah! And Dr. Zakir, could you possibly tell us what is the importance of fasting 10 days in Dhul Hajjah?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as fasting on the first 10 days of the month of Hajj, Dhiul Hajjah, its mentioned in 

 

Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2432 that 

 

“The beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) likes the virtue the most of a person who fasts in these that’s the 10 days of Dhiul Hujjah and He likes it a lot so a person asks that does He like more than doing Jihaad in the way of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala). One of the Sahaba, he asks that does Allah like it more than doing Jihaad in the way of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala). So the Prophet replies “Yes”, even more than that unless a person goes out for Qitaal, that’s in the battle field with his life and wealth and does not come back with both of them except for that its even better than doing Jihaad in the way of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala).

 

So this is the importance of the first 10 days of Hajj.

 

Yusuf Chambers: JazakAllah Khair. Did the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) mention any particular 6 days for a Muslim to fast in the month of Shawwal or can a Muslim randomly select those days at his own will? 

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as fasting in the month of Shawaal, the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said its mentioned in 

 

Sahih Muslim Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting, Hadith no. 2614, the Prophet said that 

 

“Anyone who fasts in the month of Ramadhaan and follows it with 6 days of fasting in the month of Shawwal, it is as though he has fasted for the full life, fast perpetually or fasted for 1 year, the Arabic word is Dahar, it means perpetually or full life.

 

One of its means is also for one full year. So if you fast in the month of Ramadhaan in the complete month followed with 6 days in the month of Shawwal, its as though you have fasted for thee full year.

 

As far as fasting is concerned that should we fast immediately after the month pf Ramadhaan or can we fast later on or should we fast consecutively or can we fast at random separately, the views of the scholars differ as far as this concerned but according to the authentic ruling to the best of my knowledge, since the Hadith does not specify that you should fast immediately, you can fast any 6 days in the month of Shawwal after the month of Ramadhaan has ended except for the Hadith that you should hasten in the good deeds. 

 

So if you use that logic then the earlier you fast, the better it is so that you hasten the good deeds. 

 

As far as fasting consecutively or separately it doesn’t make a difference though there are some people who say that you should  fast together then only its valid but there is no authentic Hadith to prove that. You can’t fast together or at random or separately so as long as you fast in the month of Shawwal.

 

And the third point of difference among the scholars is that since it’s a voluntary fast you can even decide, you can get up in the morning and if you want you can make the Niya that time also, thought some of the scholars say no because its important voluntary fast so you have to make the Niya one night before but according to the  ruling of a authentic Hadith you can even get up in the morning and then decide whether he wants to fast as long as you have not eaten or drank anything, or you have not violated the rules of fasting. 

 

These 3 points, fasting in the month of Shawwal does differ but the authentic I feel is that you can fast anytime of the month either starting, ending or late, you need not fast consecutively, you can fast consecutively also as well as separately and you can make the Niya as long as you don’t break any ruling of the fasting.

 

Furthermore its not necessary that you have to fast every year, if you fats its good, Alhamdulillah, but you can fast one year next year you don’t fast its not a sin. And suppose you don’t fast and only 2 days of Shawwal are left that does not mean that you cannot fast, if you fast for 2 days you will get the Sawaab for 2 days.

 

So the main Hadith says that you should fast for 6 days in the month of Shawwal after keeping in Ramadhaan, it will seem as though you have fasted for the full year.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dr. Zakir, just further to the issue of fasting in the 6 days of Shawwal. Did the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) select number 6, 6 days, for any particular… why wasn’t it for instance 5 or 7 or 8 or 9?

 

Dr. Zakir: The reason Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) selected 6 days to fast in the month of Shawwal is because the complete Hadith says if you fast the complete month of Ramadhaan then follow it with 6 days it is as though you have fasted for the full year. 

 

And one more Hadith which says that 1 deed is multiplied by 10 deeds, 10 Hasaahs. So if you fast for one month in the month of Ramadhaan it is as though you have fasted for 10 months and then you follow that’s the logic he said 6 days so that if you multiply the full month of Ramadhaan + 6 days, its equivalent to one full year.it up with 6 days, 6 days multiplied by 10 it becomes 60 days, that’s 2 months. So 10 + 2 months become 12 months so 

 

Yusuf Chambers: Well that’s interesting. Dr. Zakir is it recommended that can one fast the entire month of Sha’baan?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as fasting in the month of Shabaan is concerned 

 

It’s mentioned in Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1969 

 

Hazrat Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) used to never fast the full month except the month of Ramadhaan and Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) never fasted more than any month as compared to the month of Sha’baan.”

 

This shows that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) fasted the complete month only on the month of Ramadhaan and after Ramadhaan the maximum Prophet fasted was in the month of Sha’baan may be preparing for the blessed month to come, that is the reason and people have a misconception that you should fast for the half month of Sha’baan, there is no such Hadith saying you should fast for the half month of Shabaan but there is a Hadith which is mentioned in 

 

Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2330 where the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that 

 

“You should not fast after half the month of Shabaan is over.” 

 

That means till the 15th of Shabaan you can fast, after 16th you should not and there is another Hadith which is mentioned in 

 

Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1914 where the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that 

 

“You should not fast 1 or 2 days before the month of Ramadhaan because these are the days of doubt so you should not fast on these 2 days.”

 

So based on this Hadith after the 15th i.e. from 16th onwards unless the Hadith continues that 

 

“Unless you are used to fast in the Nawafil fast”, 

 

used to fast in the voluntary fast may be 3 days every month that’s the Aiym-ul-Beed or you used to fasting on Mondays and 

Thursdays or alternate days, it’s accepted otherwise you should not. 

 

So this is what a person should fast in the month of Sha’baan as much as possible.  

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay Doctor, Ahm… the next question which you briefly highlighted at the beginning of the interview was fasting in the 4 forbidden months which you said was the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), could you tell us which are those months? 

 

Dr. Zakir: The 4 forbidden months known as Ashurul Hurum, the 4 forbidden months where is a Sunnah, its voluntary, its recommended to fast are Dhul Qudha, Dhuul Hijja, Muharram and Rajab. 

 

If anyone fasts during these 4 months, it is recommended, it comes in the voluntary fasts.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay, thank you. Now the 9 categories that you mentioned is the fasting on Monday and Thursday, can you tell us why the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) recommended Monday and Thursday for fasting?

 

Dr. Zakir: The reason why Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) recommended the Muslims to fast on Monday and Thursday, according to the Hadith of 

 

Musnad Ahmad Vol. no. 2 Hadith no. 8361, the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said when someone asked him that 

 

“Why do you fast on Mondays and Thursdays?”, he said “These are the 2 days when the deeds of the human beings are shown to Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) and he pardons the believers unless 2 believers who don’t look at one another so Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) tells the angels that delay them.”

 

That’s the reason Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) preferred fasting on these 2 days when the deeds are exhibited to Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala), he preferred fasting on those days.

 

Further there is a Hadith in Sahih Muslim Vol. no. 2 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2606 that 

 

“Once a person asks the Prophet that why do you fast on Mondays?”, the Prophet said “I fast on Mondays because that is the day I was born and that is the day when the Qur’an was revealed  to me.” 

 

So because these 2 reasons fasting one Monday is also recommended. 

 

Yusuf Chambers: No doubt a very excellent day Monday and the Thursday to fast, may Allah make it easy for us to fast on these 2 days continuously, InshaAllah throughout the year. Dr. Zakir another of the categories you mentioned that Muslims encouraged to fast throughout the year is the Aiyam-ul-Beed which you’ve mentioned 13th, 14th and 15th, the middle portion of the each lunar month. Could you explain the significance of those days please?

 

Dr. Zakir: Aiyam-ul-Beed are the days of the full moon and i.e. the 13th, 14th and 15th of every lunar month and the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said, 

 

its mentioned in Sunan Nasai Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2424, the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that 

 

“You should fast 3 days every month and that would be equal to as though you have fasted for the full year.”

 

And the other Hadith of Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1975 says that 

 

“When you fast for 3 days every month for the full year, it is as though you have fasted for the full year because every deed is multiplied by 10 times.”

 

So if you fast 3 days every month it’s equal to full month and if you fast 3 days every month, it becomes the full year. So that’s the reason the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said fast 3 days every month so that as though you have fasted for the full year. And if you fast every year of your life, 3 days every month, it’s as though you have fasted for the full life. So that’s the reason why Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said fast during the Aiyam-ul-Beed.

 

Yusuf Chambers: That makes absolute sense, doesn’t it? Alhamdulillah. The other thing I was going to ask you is about Prophet Dawud (Alaihe Salaam). What’s the significance of his fast and what form of fast did the Prophet Dawud (Alaihe Salaam) do?

 

Dr. Zakir: The fasting which is preferred by Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), he said the best type of fasting is fasting of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam) and the details are given in 

 

Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of fasting Hadith no. 1975 where one of the Sahabas, 

 

“Abdullah (may Allah be pleased with him), the Prophet had heard, he approached to him and said, I have heard that you fast everyday and you pray the full night so the Sahaba said “yes” so the Prophet told him that you should fast for some days and break the fast for some days and you should pray at night and even sleep at night because your body has a right over you, your wife has a right over you, your family has a right over you and your guests have a right over you and then the Prophet said “you fast for 3 days every month, it will be as though you have fasted for the full year” so the Sahaba said but Prophet I can do much more that that!” then the Prophet said, fast like the fast of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam)” and the Sahaba asks him that “what type of fast did he keep?” the Prophet said “He fasted half a year” 

 

That means every alternate day for the full year. 

 

The other Hadith of Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1976, the same Hadith is repeated but in the ending he says 

 

Fast like the fast of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam) and Dawud (Alaihe Salaam) fasted one day and broke the fast the other day. That means he fasted alternate days for the full year.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay, Thank you for shedding light on the fast of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam). How does the voluntary fast differ from the obligatory fast in Islam? 

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as the voluntary fast and the obligatory fast are concerned, they are one and the same as far as the ruling is concerned except for 2 things i.e. one is the Niya where it differs between the 2 and the second is the Prophet said, the person who does voluntary fast, he is the leader of himself, if he wants he can break it whenever he wishes and these 2 rulings are derived form the Hadith of Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), 

 

its mentioned in Sunan Nasai in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2323 that

 

“Once the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) he asked his wife Hazrat Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) that do you have something to eat so she says no, so the Prophet replies that I am fasting.”

 

That means he did not have the Niya to fast the one nigh before which is required for an obligatory fast. Here a person gets up as long as he has not eaten anything or has not drank anything, he can do the Niya on the spot also, its valid.

 

The second thing as I mentioned that the person who keeps the voluntary fast, he is the leader of his own self or herself and they can break the fast whenever they wish. 

 

There is a Hadith mentioned in Tirmidhi in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 732 that 

 

“Umme Hani (may Allah be pleased with her), she says that on the day of the victory of Makkah when we went to somebody’s house Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) was given water to drink after drinking he gave it to me and she told the Prophet that I am fasting so the Prophet says that is it for atonement or your voluntary fast she says no, it’s a voluntary fast. So then the Prophet says “the person who keeps a voluntary fast, he is the master of him or herself and they can break the fast whenever they wish”

 

So if you want to break, you can break, if you please you can break the fast or you need not, the option is there. 

 

And a similar Hadith is mentioned in Sunan Baihaqi (Vol. no. 4 Book of Fasting) Hadith no. 8362 where 

 

“Once one of the Sahaba, he invites Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) to his house and the Prophet goes with other Sahabas and when the food is served one man says that I am fasting so the Prophet says “the man has taken the trouble to make food for you and he spend money so you break your fast and if you wish you can make it up later.”

 

From these Hadith you come to know that no. 1 Niya is not the same as the obligatory fast, it doesn’t have to be made one night before but especially for fasting on Arafah day and 10th day of Muharram, Ahura its preferable, its done before but otherwise in voluntary fast, its not a must it can be done later on also and a person can break the fast if he wishes after he breaks, if he wants he can compensate or he need not compensate, that is up to him.

 

Yusuf Chambers: JazakAllah Khair for your answer, Doctor. And the next question I’d like to pose to you ah… relates to the fasts which are not allowed in Islam. There are some fasts which are not allowed in Islam, could you mention those different fasts please? 

 

Dr. Zakir: The days on which fasts are prohibited 

No. 1 is fasting on the 2 Eids that’s Eidain, Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha 

No. 2 Fasting 3 days after Eid-ul-Adha which is known as Days of Tashreek, 3 days of Tashreek, 

No. 3 is Yawmal-Shak, the days of doubts fasting one or two days before Ramadhaan starts 

No. 4 is singling out Friday for fasts 

No. 5 singling out Saturday for fasting 

No. 6 is Saum-ud-Dahar i.e. fasting for the full life, that’s prohibited 

No. 7 is Misaal i.e. fasting consecutively day and night, that’s not allowed 

No. 8 is if a woman is married and if she has to keep a voluntary fast, she has to take the permission of the husband. Without taking the permission of the husband she cannot keep any voluntary fast.

 

So these are the categories of fast which are prohibited in the voluntary fast.

 

Yusuf Chambers: One of those categories you mentioned is of course the 2 Eids. Dr. Zakir, why is the fasting prohibited on the 2 Eids? 

 

Dr. Zakir: The Eidain, the 2 Eids, Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha, they are the days of festival and a Muslims normally goes out to pray in a congregation, he comes back, he meets his family members, meets the relatives, meets the friends so but natural, the days of festival and fasting, they don’t go together and furthermore during Eid-ul-Fitr, its the end of the month of Fasting so how can you fast after the end of the month of fasting and in Eid-ul-Adha its the day of sacrifice, you slaughter an animal, imagines you sacrifice an animal and you are not eating the meat of the animal you have sacrificed. So that’s the reason that the these 2 days, it’s prohibited to fast.

 

And the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said, its mentioned in 

 

Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 in the Book of Fasting, Hadith no. 2410 that the Prophet said, 

 

“It is prohibited to fast on the on the 2 Eids, Eid-ul-Adha because you sacrifice an animal and you will not be able to seat the meat of the animal you sacrifice and Eid-ul-Fitr because it marks the end of Fasting.”

 

These 2 are the reasons why to fast on Eidain, the 2 Eid days is prohibited.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dr. Zakir, had the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), forbade fasting 3 days after Eid-ul-Fitr? I would have quite clearly understood that because we have just fasted the whole month of Ramadhaan but why is it that the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) has forbade fasting is the days of Tashreek, the 3 days after Eid-ul-Adha?

 

Dr. Zakir: The reason Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) has forbidden  fasting on the days of Tashreek i.e. 3 days of fasting after Eid-ul-Adha, the reason is because these 3 days are the days of festival, these are the days that the Muslims meet the families, meet the friends, meet the relatives and they eat and they drink so its the days of festival, these 3 days specifically after Eid-ul-Adha and plus we are also allowed to sacrifice an animal besides Eid-ul-Adha even on the days of Tashreek. So its 4 days of sacrifice so imagine we sacrifice an animal and don’t eat the meat. So these are the reasons which is also mentioned in the Hadith of 

 

Musnad Ahmad Vol. no. 2 page no. 513 Hadith no. 10664 where Abu Hurrairah (may Allah be pleased with him) he says that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), he send Abdullah bin Hudhaifa (may Allah be pleased with him) to go and tell to the people of Mina who were performing the pilgrimage that they should not fast for the 3 following days after Eid-ul-Adha, the days of Tashreek because these are the days of eating and drinking and remembering Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala).

So based on that since this guidance was given to people to perform the pilgrimage, that the pilgrims, it’s also understood that Muslims should throughout the world, they should not fast on these 3 days of Tashreek.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dr. Zakir could you explain to the viewers what are the days of doubt, you mentioned earlier when a Muslim is not suppose to fast?

 

Dr. Zakir: The days of doubt, that’s known as Yawmul-Shak, Saum-al-Yaumul-Shak, fasting on the days of doubt is when you doubt whether it’s the monthRamadhaan or not. And if you are in doubt yet to be on the safe side like a person fasts before Ramadhaan starts and doubts to fast after Ramadhaan has ended yet you doubt whether Ramadhaan has ended or not, if you fast during the days of doubt, it is prohibited. As the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said, 

 

its mentioned in the Hadith of Tirmidhi Book of Fasting Hadith no. 686 that 

 

“When the moon is not seen and people doubt whether its the last day of Sha’baan or the first day of Ramadhaan and they fast, this is prohibited.”

 

Fasting because of doubt is prohibited but people doubt you know that moon has not been seen so may be it’s the last day of Shabaan or the first day of Ramadhaan so why not fast? its preferable you know when you are in doubt why don’t yo fast which is prohibited in Islam.

 

Further it’s mentioned in the Hadith of Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1914 where the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that 

 

“It is prohibited to fast 1 or 2 days before Ramadhaan because of doubt unless a person is used to keeping the Nawafil fast, is used to keeping the voluntary fast and it coincides.”

 

Means he’s used to fasting on Monday and Tuesday and the first 2 days of Ramadhaan coincides or he is used to fasting every alternate day and coincides without that exception fasting on the days of doubts is prohibited. 

 

Further is mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2327 that 

“Once we were there at the day of the sighting of the moon and people doubted whether the moon was seen or not and they was a division between the people and when goat was cut and it was given some people didn’t have the meat because they were fasting. So immediately one of the Sahaba says that all those who fast on this day, they have disobeyed Abu Qasim.”

 

Abu Qasim was the name of Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam), he was the father of Qasim. So it becomes the day of Eid. So if some people say we saw the moon, some people say now we are not sure and they fast means they are fasting on day of Eid even this is Yawmul-Shak. So Yawmul-Shak is of 2 types one is before Ramadhaan starts, you know, fasting in the month of Sha’baan and one is after Ramadhaan gets over, fasting in the month of Shawwal so both these are prohibited because you know, what Neeyat will you make? That I am fasting I don’t know whether it’s Ramadhaan or not. And you are fasting in doubt. So when a Muslim does an act or did something good, you should be sure, you should not be in doubt and then fast, in doubt and then offer Salaah, it doesn’t make sense. 

 

Yusuf Chambers: Ahm… that’s absolutely very clear I believe. Following on from that, another category of prohibited fasts and Fridays is an incredibly special day for all Muslims wherever you are and so why is it that it can’t be singled out on its own as an object of fast?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as singling out Friday for keeping the voluntary fast, its is prohibited because Friday it is the main day for the Muslims in the week. You can call it the weekly Eid or a day which is important day for the Muslims and we offer congregational Salaah and we meet the relatives, we meet our friends. So to fast on this day, its not preferable and furthermore, it is negating of doing the opposite of what the Jews and Christians do, they prefer fasting on their main day i.e. Jews prefer fasting on Saturday and the Christians on Sunday and this is considered as a religious day and all the other days, they do all the activities, no problem so we don’t believe in that only doing acts of good deeds on Friday and not doing on the other days of the week so based on these 2 reasons, the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) has prohibited singling out Friday for fasting but this prohibition is not complete prohibition, it is rather Makrooh and he said that if you have to fast, you can fast on Friday along with fasting one day before or one day afterwards that means you are not singling out for fasting or if you are used to fasting on  particular days, you know, like may be 3 days in a month, the Aiyam-ul-Beed and that happens to be a Friday then there’s no problem or if you are fasting alternate days and that happens to be a Friday then no problem otherwise singling out only Friday in not permitted. 

 

It’s mentioned in the Hadith of Sahih Bukhari Vol.  no. 3 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1986 that 

 

“Once the Prophet met Juwariya (may Allah be pleased with her) and she was fasting on a Friday so the Prophet asks her “Did you fast yesterday?” she says “no” “Do you have an intention to fast tomorrow?” she said “No” “Then you break your fast”

 

Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) further said, its mentioned in 

 

Sahih Muslim Vol.   no. 2 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2546, the beloved Prophet said that 

 

“Do not single out the night preceding Friday for offering the night Salaah, night prayer and neither single out Friday for your voluntary fast unless you are used to fasting”, unless you are accustomed to fasting and then Friday falls on that.

 

So as I mentioned earlier that Friday should not be singled out and you know, because you don’t want to copy the other non-Muslims and Jews and the Christians unless it’s a normal practice any habit and it happens to fall on that day, no problem. So if you fast on a Friday and if it is preceded by fasting one day before or one day after, its no problem or if it falls on your normal routine of fasting like alternate days or the 3 days of Aiymul-Beed that is perfectly fine.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay, Dr. Zakir but what about Saturday. Saturday cannot... also cannot be singled out for voluntary fasts, is that correct?

 

Dr. Zakir: The beloved Prophet said, it’s mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawud Vol. no. 2 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 2415 that 

 

“Do not single out Saturday for fasting and even if you have to chew a grape skin or a piece of wood then chew it but don’t single out Saturday for Fasting.”

 

The reason Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) particularly said “Do not single out Saturday for fasting” is somewhat similar reason for Friday because the Jews, they fast on Saturday and its their day of Festival. So don’t want to imitate them and we don’t want to be away from them and that’s the reason even for Sunday, it is done by the Christians. So specifically not to single it out, that’s the reason the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) forbade to fast… singling out Saturday unless its your normal routine and if it happens to coincide with that day. 

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay. Dr. Zakir another point which is quite interesting... I mean fasting has many benefits and you know, you have explained so many of those over the last 3 weeks or so. Could you explain to the viewers why shouldn’t we fast the whole year through why is just one month particularly that we are being told to fast? 

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as fasting the whole year is concerned, the reason Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) has prohibited fasting everyday of the full year or fasting for the full life is it would lead to ones physical ruin, it can lead to one’s moral ruin, it can lead to religious pessimism which are prohibited in Islam. And there may be health problems, medical problems, it would be rater overdoing and 

 

Allah says in the Quran in Surah Nisa ch. 4 verse no. 171

 

la Taghloo fee Deenikum

 

“Do not commit excess in your religion” 

 

So that’s the reason the Prophet has prohibited.

 

And Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) says in Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1977 that 

 

“He says that anyone who fasts everyday, throughout his life, he has not fasted at all.”

 

And the Hadith which I quoted earlier of Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1975 that 

 

Abdullah Bin Umar asks, he narrates (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet said 

 

“O Abdullah, have I heard that you fast everyday and you pray the full night?” and he replied “yes O Prophet” so the Prophet replies that “You fast for some days and you break the fast for some days, you pray for the part of the night and you sleep for part of the night. Your wife has a right over you, your body has a right over you, your relatives have a right over you, your guests have a right over you”

 

So if you do this you are ruining your social life etc. and your family life and the Prophet continues and says that if you fast for 3 days in every month it’s as though you are fasting for the full year. But Abdullah replies (may Allah be pleased with him) that I can do much more.” so the Prophet says “Fast like the fast of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam)” so he asked “What is the fast of Dawud (Alaihe Salaam)?” the Prophet replied “He fasted for half a year” 

 

That means he fasted on alternate days. One day he kept a fast, one day he broke the fast, one day he kept the fast and that is the best of fast.

 

So this is the reason Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) prohibited fasting everyday of the year, everyday of the life. 

 

Yusuf Chambers:  Islam’s intrinsic balance yet again! 

 

Dr. Zakir: Ummat-e-Wasat. It’s a middle most religion.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Absolutely, Alhamdulillah. Thank God for that.  Dr. Zakir what about the the fast.. fasting continuously through the day and night, that’s prohibited for Muslims, isn’t it? 

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as Visaal is concerned, fasting continuously day and night, fasting continuously day and night without breaking the fast, the Prophet said in 

 

Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1966, the beloved Prophet said that

 

“Do not fast continuously day and night and he told it thrice “Do not fast continuously Day and night” the word is Visaal used here. So the Sahabas said but Prophet don’t you do it sometimes? The Prophet said Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) provides me food and drink where I am sleeping.” 

 

That means he has the power, he said you don’t overdo it, don’t burden yourself.

 

And further its mentioned in Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 3 in the Book of Fasting Hadith no. 1967 that 

 

“Do not Fast continuously day and night, if you want to do it maximum you can do is you can fast up to the Suhoor time.”

 

So you can fast from starting of Dawn continuously till the next Suhoor time that’s the maximum you can do that’s permissible if you want to do it beyond that it is not permissible because again it would not be medically right, it will cause damage to your body and other parts and the social aspects and religious aspects etc. 

 

Yusuf Chambers: Dr. Zakir, why is it compulsory for a wife to seek permission of her husband before she performs a voluntary fast?

 

Dr. Zakir: The beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said, its mentioned in 

 

Sahih Bukhari Vol. no. 7 (Book of Nikah) Hadith no. 5192, the Prophet said that 

 

“No woman should perform voluntary fast without the permission of the husband if he is at home.”

 

A similar Hadith is mentioned in Musnad Ahmad Vol. no. 2 Pg. no. 245 Hadith no. 7343 where the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alaihe wa sallam) said that 

 

“No woman should fast even a single day without the permission of the husband if he is at home except in the month of Ramadhaan”

 

Here we come to know the reason is that if she performs a voluntary fast, she is infringing on the rights of the husband may be he would want to have a…. he may want to spent time with her and if she fasts without taking his permission she may be infringing on his rights and furthermore it may even tempt him to do a sin because if he wants her and if she breaks the fast, it’s a sin and furthermore we come to know from the Hadith that if the husband is not at home and if he is traveling then she need not take the permission or if he is disabled etc. and diseased and doesn’t require her then the Fuqahas say that even at that time she need not take the permission. Otherwise at normal time when he is at home, she should take the permission.

 

Yusuf Chambers: Okay JazakAllah Khair, Dr. Zakir. Last question today, Ahh… if a woman has missed some of her Ramadhaan fasts and… she hasn’t made the fast up yet and then Dhul Hujjah comes and she wants to fast the first 10 days, is she allowed?

 

Dr. Zakir: As far as permissibility is concerned a woman who has not made up or a person who has not made up the missed fasts, the Qadha fasts of Ramadhaan can fast Dhul Hujjah and later on make up the fast but its preferable that the person first completes the obligatory fast because the Qadha fast which a person has missed whether a man or a woman of Ramadhaan, its more important to complete that than the voluntary fast of Dhul Hajjah. So its preferable that first she fasts, the Fard Fast Qadha and then the voluntary fast but if she wishes and if Dhul Hujjah comes, she can do Dhul Hujjah as long as she knows that there is time that she can make up for the compulsory fast before the next Ramadhaan both are permissible. The better is, first doing the Qadha fast and then Dhul Hujjah fast or she can opt both together that she can do the Niya of the Qadha fasts as well as the fast of Dhul Hajjah and InshaAllah, Allah will reward her for both together. 

 

Yusuf Chambers: JazakAllah Khair, Dr. Zakir. We have come to the end of the show yet again and thank you very much for your answers and your consistency in sitting with me over these number of days, Alhamdulillah, may Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) bless you and all of the Muslims, InshaAllah and all the viewers InshaAllah. JazakAllah Khair.

 

Brothers and sisters thank you once again for having the patience to sit down and watch the show. May Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) bestow benefit upon you and knowledge upon you and the ability to act upon that correct knowledge, Alhamdulillah. May Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) make it easy for all the Muslims to undergo the tests and trials in this world and to receive the benefit of the blessings of Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) in this world and the hereafter. I ask Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta’ala) indeed to bless all the Muslims and I ask you to turn your set on once again same time tomorrow when we will be discussing the topic, InshaAllah, ‘From this Ramadhaan to the next Ramadhaan’, InshaAllah.

 

Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh!