Ramadan

Can I Keep My Six Shawwal Fasts on Fridays?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

Can we keep Sunnah fasts on Fridays? For instance: Shawwal fasting, if we wish to keep after the first week of Shawwal, can we keep Thursdays and Fridays for 3 weeks. My logical understanding is that as Friday is a special day for Muslims and since we have a choice to keep on other days to complete the six Shawwal fasts, it is preferable to exclude Friday.

Answer

Thank you for your question.

Shawwal Fasts

Shaykh Jamir Meah mentions:

The six days of Shawwal (the month after Ramadan) are the days that immediately follow the first day of Eid al Fitr (2nd – 7th Shawwal). It is recommended to fast the first six days of Shawwal, as the Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) gave the glad tidings that “Whoever fasts Ramadan, then follows it with six days from Shawwal, it is like they fasted the entire year.” [Muslim]

The reward of fasting the six days of Shawwal brings about the above reward. The Sunnah of fasting them consecutively is a separate reward. One may separate the six days anytime during Shawwal, but it is better to fast them consecutively (if one is able to) as hastening to worship is always recommended and by not doing so, one forgoes the (separate) reward of fasting them consecutively.

The reward of these six days is as if one had fasted obligatory fasts. Therefore, were one to fast the six days of Shawwal with Ramadan every year; it would be as if they observed obligatory fasts their whole life.

The Fiqh of Fasting Ramadan According to the School of Imam Shafi’i

Fridays

It says in the Reliance of the Traveller:

i2.5 (Nawawi: (n: with commentary by Muhammad Shirbini Khatib)) It is offensive to single out Fridays or Saturdays ((Shirbini:) or Sundays for fasting, i.e. to single out one of the above-mentioned days when they do not coincide with days one normally fasts. The fast of someone who usually fasts every other day and whose fast coincides with one of these days or with a day of uncertainty is not offensive, because of the hadith
related by Muslim, “Do not single out Friday for fasting unless it happens to coincide with a fast one of you performs,” similar days being analogous to Fridays in this respect) (Mughni al-muhtaj ila ma’rifa ma’ani alfaz al-Minhaj (y73), 1.447)).

Conclusion

So singling out a Friday on its own for fasting is what is disliked, and what you describe above is not singling it out. Please see this link regarding the Hanafi school as well:
Am I Allowed to Fast on a Friday Without Fasting the Previous or the Following Day?

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.