Does Touching a Child’s ‘Awra Invalidate My Wudu?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

Does touching someone’s nakedness (‘awra) break wudu? I accidentally touched my five-year-old cousin when I was trying to move him.

Answer

In the Shafi’i school, touching the private parts of any person of any age (even yourself) with the skin of one’s palms or the inner surface of the fingers does invalidate one’s ritual purity. The private parts here mean the penis (not including the scrotum), the anus, or the labia minora. The area around the private parts doesn’t include in this ruling. [Nuh Keller, Reliance of the Traveller, p.73]

[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.