Can I Go Home to Use the Bathroom While in I‘tikaf?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Abdullah Anik Misra

Question

I live opposite the mosque that I intend to do i‘tikaf in. The mosque has toilets and an old shower. However, I would like to come home (literally 2 mins across the road to the mosque) to use the bathroom instead of in the mosque.

Is this possible, or will it break my sunna i‘tikaf?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate

In the sunna i‘tikaf during the last ten days of Ramadan (spiritual retreat in the mosque), one can leave the legal mosque for certain natural needs such as answering the call of nature, taking an obligatory bath, or getting food if one does not have any to the extent needed. However, lingering outside beyond need or doing other non-essential errands off of that path could break the seclusion. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah]

If the toilet facilities in the mosque are not suitable or not conducive for one, one may use the facilities close by at home, provided they use them to the point and directly come back to the mosque thereafter. Wudu can also be made at this time from home. The only thing to remember is that because home is a familiar place, one should take care not to break one’s seclusion by forgetfully going beyond the allowed dispensation. [Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Abdullah Anik Misra
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Shaykh Abdullah Misra was born in Toronto, Canada, in 1983. His family hails from India, and he was raised in the Hindu tradition. He embraced Islam in 2001 while at the University of Toronto, from where he completed a Bachelor of Business Administration. He then traveled overseas in 2005 to study the Arabic language and Islamic sciences in Tarim, Yemen, for some time, as well as Darul Uloom in Trinidad, West Indies. He spent 12 years in Amman, Jordan, where he focused on Islamic Law, Theology, Hadith Sciences, Prophetic Biography, and Islamic Spirituality while also working at the Qasid Arabic Institute as Director of Programs. He holds a BA in Islamic Studies (Alimiyya, Darul Uloom) and authorization in the six authentic books of Hadith and is currently pursuing specialized training in issuing Islamic legal verdicts (ifta’). He holds a certificate in Counselling and often works with new Muslims and those struggling with religious OCD. He is an instructor and researcher in Sacred Law and Theology with the SeekersGuidance The Global Islamic Seminary. Currently, He resides in the Greater Toronto Area with his wife and children. His personal interests include Indian history, comparative religion, English singing, and poetry.