Reciting Multiple Suras in Prayer

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Is it OK in Hanafi fiqh to recite more than one Sura after Al-Fatiha in the fard prayer: 1. Reading by yourself; 2. As the Imam.

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are well, insha’Allah.

It is permitted without dislike to recite more than a single chapter (surah) in each cycle (rak`at) of any prayer whilst praying alone or as imam. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah; `Ala al-Din `Abidin, al-Hadiyya al-`Ala’iyya]

However, be sure to keep the first cycle (rak`at) longer than the second during the obligatory prayer as not doing so would be slightly disliked (makruh tanizihan) [ibid.]

Also, keep in mind one’s congregation when leading. It would be best not to make the prayer unreasonably long.

And Allah alone gives success.


Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Is Encapsulating the Placenta for Consumption Halal?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz A. Khan

Question: I’m pregnant with my third child. With my previous pregnancies I had terrible post partum hemorrhage as well as severe post partum depression.

I have a midwife who suggests freeze drying and encapsulating the placenta (for consumption) as it has been proven to prevent/help hemorrhage as well as post partum depression.

Is this halal?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

I pray this finds you in the best of health states.

There is scholarly consensus that it is impermissible to consume any part of the human being, due to the special honor granted to humans by Allah Most High, Who states, “And certainly, We have honored the children of Adam” (17:70). [Kuwaiti Fiqh Encyclopedia]

There are other ways of treating hemorrhaging and postpartum depression. Consult your midwife and other experts for alternative ways that are Islamically permissible. There are some homeopathic remedies for each. Also, it is really important for a woman after childbirth to take time out every day to tend to her needs. She should also make an effort to reach out to family and friends for support and to socialize. Exercise, even if only a little every day, is also very beneficial.

And Allah knows best.

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Joining Prayers While Traveling (Maliki)

Answered by Shaykh Rami Nsour

Question: What is the ruling on joining prayers when traveling according to the Maliki teachings?

Answer: According to the Maliki madhab, it is a permissible dispensation (rukhsa) to join prayers while traveling. The travel does not have to be one where the distance allows you to shorten the prayer, you merely have to be out of your city limits. Once you are out of your city limits, and traveling to do something that is not disobedience, then you can either bring Asr (or Isha) forward or delay Dhuhr (or Maghrib) depending on your situation. If you are in a resting place when Dhuhr enters, and you intend to be traveling until Maghrib, then you can bring Asr forward. In the case of Maghrib, if you are resting while it enters and you will then travel past fajr time, then you can bring Isha forward.

To delay Dhuhr or Maghrib, the following is the scenario; If you are traveling while dhuhr enters and you will continue traveling but will stop before maghrib, then you can delay dhuhr. If you are traveling while Maghrib enters and you will stop before Fajr, then you can delay Isha.

So, as an example, you are leaving Liverpool around noon to attend a program after Asr in London. You are on the road when dhuhr comes in but you wont get into London to the masjid until after Asr has entered. In this situation, you can delay dhuhr and pray it with Asr in London. On the way home, you leave before Maghrib enters and then the sun sets while you are on the road. You will get back to Liverpool before fajr and so you can pray Maghrib with Isha when you return.

For bringing them forward; you are travelling from Liverpool to London in the winter time. You stop for fuel when dhuhr is in and you wont get to London until maghrib. You can pray asr with dhuhr.

To illustrate using this dispensation in times other than when you shorten prayer: You live in Liverpool but you need to go to Warrington. You leave before Maghrib and the sunsets after you have left your city limits. You will be out and about the whole time in Warrington until you return but then maghrib will be out. You can delay maghrib and pray it with isha.


When and Where Do I Break My Fast on a 20 Hour Airline Flight?

Answered by Ustadh Salman Younas

Question: I am a little bit confused due to this part of response to a former question:

“As a final note, please be aware that if one begins the day (when Fajr enters) as a resident (i.e. non-traveler) then they must fast, and complete the fast of the day, even if they travel later in the day. In order to be exempt from fasting, the traveler must be in the state of travel when Fajr enters. [Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]”

Our flight is at midday and takes more than 20 hours. Do we have to fast now because Fajr has already entered? And if yes, when and where do we have to break our fast??

Answer: assalamu `alaykum

I pray you are well.

According to the Hanafi school, in order for an individual to be excused from the fast, he would have to be deemed a traveler before the time of Fajr enters. There is no difference when it comes to this in the Hanafi school based on my knowledge. [Mawsili, Ikhtiyar; Ibn `Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

This is also the position of the Shafi`i and Maliki schools. [Nawawi, Majmu`; Dasuqi, Hashiya `ala Sharh al-Kabir]

The Position of the Hanbali School

The only school to make an exception to this rule is the Hanbali school. According to them, so long as a person is resident when the time for fasting begins, he must initiate the fast. However, they clearly stipulate that if a person is fasting a specific day and then initiates a journey, he may break the fast as soon as he leaves his city limits – regardless of whether this is before or after Fajr. [Hijawi, Zad al-Mustaqni`; Ibn Qudama, al-Mughni]

The Issue of Dispensations & Planning Ahead

My advice to you would be to try your best to fast the day you are traveling. You will have to initiate the fast as you will be leaving after Fajr. Despite having a twenty hour journey, it is highly unlikely that you will be fasting for twenty hours straight. You are bound to enter a time zone before the completion of your journey where the time of Maghrib would enter, thus ending your fast.

Try to have a nourishing and ample breakfast (suhur) with a lot of water. When you are in the plane and see that it is clearly getting dark outside, you may break your fast (iftar). Maghrib is perhaps the easier of the prayer times to judge while on a plane.

If you feel you are unable to fast during the journey, you may take the Hanbali position mentioned above.


Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Is There a Difference of Opinion on Whether Slaughtering (Qurbani/Udhiya) is Necessary, and How Does One Deal With Years of Makeups?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz A. Khan

Question: Assalaam-u-alaykum,

My understanding is that with regards to qurbani on Eid Al-Adha, in the Hanafi school, it is wajib upon everyone who:

1) is baaligh, 2) is sane, and 3) possesses wealth greater than or equal to nisaab

However, I rarely came across a household where more than one qurbani was taking place.  I find this rather odd, because in Indo-Pak households women of the house generally have gold greater than the nisaab, yet only one qurbani is typically done.

This begs a few questions in my mind:

A. In the Hanafi school, is there a difference of opinion on whether qurbani on Eid Al-Adha is wajib or a lesser ruling (sunnah muakadah?) to persons meeting criteria 1-3 above?
B. Is there an exception on housewives versus working women (both owning gold exceeding nisab)?
C. Is there an exception on never-married girls who are still living with their parents and have gold exceeding nisab?
D. What are the requirements in the other 3 maddhabs concerning on whom qurbani on Eid Al-Adha is wajib?  In the case of many consecutive years of past sins (of not having done qurbani when required to do so), can one adopt the ruling of one of these schools (*if* in fact they do not require it)?

I appreciate your time and consideration in clearing up these issues for me.

Jazakum Allahu Khayran!

Answer: Assalamu alaikum warahmatullah,

I pray this finds you in the best of health and states.

(1) The relied-upon position of the Hanafi school is that udhiya is mandatory (wajib) — this is the position of Abu Hanifa himself, as well as Imams Muhammad, Hasan ibn Ziyad al-Lulu’i and Zufar, as well as one of two narrations on Abu Yusuf. The other narration on Abu Yusuf is that it is an emphasized sunna.

Having said this, some Hanafi scholars such as Imam Tahawi relate that, while Abu Hanifa considered udhiya wajib, both Abu Yusuf and Muhammad deemed it an emphasized sunna. [Maydani, Lubab]

(2, 3) There is no exception for housewives vs. working women, nor for women that have never married. As you mention, any sane adult that possesses nisab (from any type of wealth, aside from basic personal needs) must perform his/her own udhiya.

(4) The Shafi’is, Hanbalis, and according to one narration, Imam Malik, deem udhiya to be an emphasized sunna. According to the other narration, Imam Malik deemed it wajib. [Kuwaiti Fiqh Encyclopedia]

If a Hanafi missed several years of udhiya, omitted neither deliberately nor out of negligence, then he/she could use the opinion of Abu Yusuf and the other schools with respect to the past. However, it remains superior to adhere to Abu Hanifa’s position and hence donate to the poor the market value of a sheep/goat for each year missed, especially if this does not entail a financial burden. The former is a legal dispensation, while the latter is the way of spiritual resolve and, assuming no undue hardship, greater taqwa.

And Allah knows best.

Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani

Can One Person Slaughter a Sacrificial Animal on the Behalf of Others on Eid in the Maliki School?

Answered by Shaykh Idris Watts

Question: Can someone share in the price of a sacrificial animal on Eid in the Maliki School? Our family usually gives one sheep for the whole family. Is this correct?

Answer: It depends. The Eid sacrifice is an emphasized sunnah (should not be left out of laziness) for every free Muslim whether they are male or female, young or old, resident or traveling. It is not an obligation (wājib) unlike in other schools of law. This is as long as the money they spend on the animal they sacrifice is not needed for one’s basic annual expenses. If that money is needed, then it is not an emphasized sunnah for them to sacrifice an animal on Eid. Likewise, the person performing Hajj is not required to sacrifice for Eid because he is required to sacrifice an animal for his Hajj rites (hady) for Hajj.

A man is responsible for himself and his dependents i.e. those he is legally responsible to support such as sons before puberty, daughters until they get married and his parents if they are poor i.e. they don’t have enough money to cover their basic annual expenses for the whole year and is in need of that money they would use to sacrifice an animal. As for his wife, he is not required to provide for her in this regard. Therefore, she is obliged to sacrifice an animal herself behalf as well.

However, it is permissible for one person to slaughter on the behalf of others even if it is an obligation for those others as well. Their number can even exceed seven and they can all to share in the reward (not price) as long as:

i) they do not share in the price
ii) that they all live in the same house
iii) that they be related by blood such as a brother, son or daughter or the person be their wife
iv) that the other people be amongst those for whom the person provides financially either as a legal responsibility like a son or wife or out of good will such as a brother or uncle.

You can sacrifice a camel, cow, buffalo, goat or sheep. The sheep must have entered its second lunar year. As for a goat, it must have entered its second year by a month or more, as cow must have entered its fourth year and a camel must have entered its sixth year. However, you cannot come together as a group of people and share in the price of the animal, no matter how expensive it is.

Therefore, to summarize, it is an emphasized sunnah for every Muslim young or old, male of female to sacrifice an animal, but it is enough for the head of the family to sacrifice one animal on all everyone’s behalf as long as the group do not share in the price, as long as they live under the same roof and the head of the family provides for them all financially. If they share in the price, it will not be valid from any of them. Likewise, if people of the family came together and each paid a sum of money for one sheep, cow or camel, it would not be valid according to the School of Imam Malik. But this would not mean that they would have to make up for mistakes made in the past because sacrificing an animal is a sunnah and not a obligation (wājib) in the Maliki School.

Abu Zahra Foundation

Shaykh Idris Watts accepted Islam in 1998 in the first year of his Arabic Language Degree at the University of Leeds. In the second year of the degree programme, he set off to the ancient city of Fez, Morocco to further his Arabic Language studies. During this period he attended circles of knowledge and zawiyahs around Fez. Shaykh Idris graduated in 2002 from the University with First Class Honors and also received an award of excellence for his language skills. He moved back to Fez to embark on an intensive period of study. He attended classes at the Qarawiyeen University in the Old City for the next four years studying with the likes of the adept grammarian Shaykh Abdel-Hayy al-’Amrāwī and many other teachers. He also had the opportunity of sitting with the students of the late Shaykh Makkī bin Kīrān, (may God bless his soul), who was a master of the ten variant recitations of the Qurān and studied Tajwīd and four of the variant recitations with them.

He returned to England in 2007, and recently took up the full-time post of Resident Scholar at the Abu Zahra Foundation.