What Is the Ruling on Conditional Oaths?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


One day I swore I would play a video game twice a week until my sister finishes all the marvel movies. When I said that, I meant the main MCU movies, but there are many other movies and shows by Marvel that I didn’t even know about when I swore that oath. My sister finished watching these MCU movies, so can I stop playing twice a week now, or does she have to finish all the marvel movies and shows for me to stop?

Also, I’m not sure if I said that she has to watch the shows too, because, at the time, I also didn’t know about the shows. And some of them are MCU shows, but I didn’t even know they existed when I made that oath, so do I have to wait until she finishes them too? And should she watch the movies that came out after I swore the oath?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.

I pray you are in good faith and health.

Yes, you have taken an oath. However, it is better in your case to give expiation and leave and ignore what happened in the past to prevent you from stopping playing games and avoid your sister having to watch the movies and shows.

The expiation is to:

  • feed ten poor people two full meals,
  • to clothe them decently, or
  • to give the monetary equivalent of that. [’Ala’uddin ‘Ibn ’Abidin, Al-Hadiyya al-’Ala’iyya]

In the future, please don’t use oaths like this; it will just get you into unnecessary bother.

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I pray this helps with your question.
[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete the hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled in an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and ‘Aalimiyya sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan. He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for several years. He has taught hifz of the Quran, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to children and adults onsite and online extensively in the UK and Ireland. He taught at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences. He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His interest is a love of books and gardening.