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Should I Repeat My Prayers Because of Doubts Regarding My Purity?

Answered by Ustadh Sufyan Qufi

Question

After praying all my prayers, I saw something on my arm, which could prevent water flow to the skin. I’m not sure when it came there, I don’t even have the slightest clue. So should I repeat all the prayers?

Answer

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

I pray this finds you in the best of states.

Your prayers were all valid because you were sure that at one point in time you didn’t have anything on your arm that would prevent the validity of your doubts on whether your arm has been affected by this barrier before performing your wudu or not are of no legal consequences.

This is known through this important fiqh principle:
“Certainty is not lifted by a doubt.” [Ibn Nujaym, al-Ashbah wa’l Nadha’ir; Majallat al-Ahkam al-‘Adliyya]

This is based on the following verse of the Quran:

“Most of them follow nothing but conjectures. Surely, conjectures are of no avail in the matter of truth at all.” [Quran, 10:36]

Moreover, it is based on the teachings of the Prophet (peace and blessings upon him) established in many sahih hadiths who make us understand how to apply this principle.

One example is this hadith narrated by ‘Abbas bin Tamim (may Allah be pleased with him):
My uncle asked Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings upon him) about a person who imagined to have passed wind during the prayer. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings upon him) replied: “He should not leave his prayers unless he hears sound or smells something.” [Bukhari]

And Allah knows best.

Wassalam
[Ustadh] Sufyan Qufi
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani