Washing of Whole Mouth During Ghusl

special supplication

Question: Must I move my detached gums in the ritual bath (ghusl) in order for the water to reach underneath?

Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

You are not obliged to move your detached gums in the ritual bath (ghusl) in order for the water to reach underneath [Tahtawi/Shurunbulali, Hashiyat Maraqi al-Falah].

Water Reaches

Even though you may assume that water does not reach underneath your gums – the basis is that it does. Water is naturally thin and permeating. Since this is the basis of understanding one would need reasonable surety to assume otherwise [Ibid.].

Due to this, you should ignore any assumptions that the water does not reach. Merely swish the water around your mouth and consider that integral complete.

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Tasting Blood While Fasting

Fasting The White Days of Sha‘ban

Question: Does the taste of blood from licking one’s cracked lips break the fast? Is it permissible for one to rinse their mouth while fasting?

Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

If it is the outer part of the lip that is bleeding and one ingests the blood the fast breaks. If, however, it is the inner part of the lip that is bleeding then the following rulings apply:

Tasting Blood From the Inner Part of the Lip

Simply tasting blood with your tongue does not break your fast. If, however, the blood itself (not just the taste) enters your mouth then the fast breaks.

Swallowing Blood From the Inner Part of the Lip

Swallowing blood breaks the fast if (a) the blood reaches the throat and (b) the blood is greater or equal to the saliva it mixes with [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].

However, there is a big difference between tasting blood and swallowing blood itself.

Rinsing the Mouth

If blood does enter your mouth, spitting one time is sufficient to purify the mouth. You may also rinse your mouth with water if you wish and after spitting the water out spit once; swallowing the wetness that remains in your mouth thereafter does not break you fast [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

 

 

Praying Behind Imam

Question: How do I know if I caught the rak’a with the Imam?
Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
You have caught the unit of prayer (rak’a) with the Imam if you reach the minimum bowing while the Imam is still bowing. The minimum bowing is such that your hand could reach your knees [Tahtawi/Shurunbulali, Hashiyat Maraqi al-Falah].
Ibn ‘Umar is narrated to have said, “If you reach the Imam while he is bowing, and you bow before he rises, you have caught (i.e. that cycle of prayer). If he raises before you bow then you have missed it” [Abd al-Razzaq, Musannaf].
Summary

If you are reasonably sure that you reached the minimum bowing whilst the imam has not raised from the bowing – you have caught that unit of prayer with the Imam.The basis is that the Imam is in the bowing position. If you are not sure that he left that position, assume that he hadn’t.Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

 

Wet Dreams and Ghusl

Question: I understand the general rule for wet dreams is that any wetness you see in the morning after waking up, regardless if you saw a dream or not, you should assume that you need to take a ghusl. I have a problem with excessive waswasa, I always understood that I should ignore any doubts, but sometimes I have days where I do ghusl almost every day. What is the ruling on this?

 

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

You are correct in your understanding mentioned above that – if one wakes up and notices wetness of sexual fluid (i.e. not sweat, urine, or other), on their body or clothing they must perform a ritual bath, regardless of recalling a dream or not [Ala’ al-Din Abidin, al-Hadiyya al-`Ala’iyya].

The Basis: Never Act on Doubts

Wet dreams are not a common daily occurrence. The basis is that you did not experience a wet dream and you would need reasonable surety to act contrary to this basis. The reasonable surety cannot be established without some sort of proof distinguishing it from mere conjecture. An example of proof is finding visible sexual fluid in the vicinity of your private part.

Another important basis to keep in mind is that you do not have to check unless you have reasonable surety of wetness – not just a mere sensation of wetness. If you are not reasonably sure or certain that there is wetness don’t look, ignore.

Misgivings (Waswasa)

For the one who suffers from doubts and misgivings abandoning caution is the best cure.

“As for the one who is often inflicted with misgivings, it is necessary for them to sever the cause of the misgivings and not to give it any consideration. This is because it is the doing of Shaytan and we have been commanded to oppose him” [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].

No Undue Hardship in Religion

You must know that Allah Most High informs us that He does not intend to burden us unduly.

He Most High says, “It is not Allah’s Will to burden you but to purify you and complete His favor upon you, so perhaps you will be grateful” [Qur’an; 05:06].

Burden (haraj) in the above verse refers to undue hardship. Thus if you are finding your religious duties unduly difficult and burdensome something is wrong.

Knowledge

The long-term cure for these constant doubts is to seek a deeper understanding of Islamic Knowledge. With knowledge, Shaytan can not deceive you with his whispers and plots. I would advise that you find authentic scholars in your area and study with them a basic text in Islamic Jurisprudence.

Please note that SeekersGuidance.org has classes available in Islamic Jurisprudence and many other subjects.

Hope this helps.
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Human Potential: True Devotion to God

Human Potential: True Devotion to God

By Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

This is the third of a series of articles by SeekersGuidance internal scholar Shaykh Yusuf Weltch on human potential. Shaykh Yusuf poses thought-provoking ideas about what humans are capable of; both success and destruction. We aspire to have a true devotion to God, but are left bewildered as we try and reflect on what true devotion is. When the desire of Allah enters one’s heart, what is the correct response?


The scholars tell us that the path to Allah Most High, the spiritual journey of purification, is defined as ‘true devotion to God.’ One could bring their mind to exhaustion in deep reflection of such a concise yet profound definition. True devotion to God. Does this mean that one could be untrue in their devotion? If that is so, then the importance of the heart’s role is manifest. The heart is, as you very well know, the place of truthfulness. 

The idea of truthfulness entails great meaning, easily expressed but, indeed, challenging to adopt. True devotion demands that the journey be made on Allah’s terms, not ours, for there are many who selfishly worship Allah the way they want to worship Him. This is not truthfulness. This ego in the guise of piety. If truthful devotion is to worship Allah in the way by which He is pleased and with those deeds pleasing to Him, there is no journey – in that case – without knowledge. Knowledge of that which is pleasing to Allah and by extension, that which is displeasing to Allah so one can be mindful not to draw upon themselves the Divine displeasure.

Knowledge of the limits of Allah Most High holds no benefit if not coupled with commensurate action. Otherwise, such knowledge would not only be void of benefit but may be used in exposing such a person’s false claim of true devotion on Judgment day. Knowledge and implementation, like the two wings of a bird soaring toward the heavens, must both exist in synchronicity fueled by the deep yearning of the heart for a reunion with Allah. A real trifecta. Mind, body, and soul. To worship Allah with all that makes us us. The congruence of human reality with the reality of its ultimate purpose.

In contrast, though, what a loss, what a loss indeed for the one who lacks any desire for their Creator, knows not of His greatness nor that which draws down His good pleasure, and moves not a muscle in His way. Could one really be so blind to think that this beautiful creation exists for any other reason? For play? For frivolity? Is that what some have convinced themselves that life is. Allah Most High says, “Those blind ˹to the truth˺ and those who can see are not equal, nor are those who believe and do good ˹equal˺ to those who do evil. Yet you are hardly mindful.

After a realization like this comes to one’s heart, one must respond to it. It is in essence another of Allah’s invitations to us to turn to Him, truthfully, in devotion. Our response, however, should be one of true humility. If you find yourself of those who do desire Allah, you must know that your desire is a blessing from Allah Himself and His bestowing of it to you, as opposed to others, is of His own discretion and mercy, not because you deserve it. If however, you find yourself lacking desire, you must turn inwardly in the arraignment of your soul. Tell it, ‘What are you seeking?! Created things?! Or the Creator of all things?! Material possessions or Divine reunion?! 

Thus for each is their task. Each must hold themselves accountable, beseech Allah with brokenness and humility, and strive. What a solace it is that Allah Most High tells us, ‘I am as My slave thinks of Me.’ Have a good opinion of Allah. Had He not wanted you, you would not be thinking of Him now. Had He not wanted you, He would have made you content with depravity and spiritual bankruptcy. However, He is showing you how to get to Him and has promised you He will take care of you on your journey. The path awaits. Will you answer the call and set off on your journey?


About the Author

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied inheritance law, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance teachers team in the summer of 2019.

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Sending Prayers on The Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace)

Question: What is the ruling of sending prayers on the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) in the prostration?

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Sending prayers on the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) in the prostration would take on the same ruling as supplicating in the prostration.

This is because sending prayers on the Prophet is a supplication for him.

Supplicating in the Prostration

Supplicating in the prostration is seen as a great deed and the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) encouraged it.

The Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The closest a slave is to his Lord is when he is prostrating. So make abundant supplication (therein)” [Muslim].

Limited to Voluntary Prayers

However, supplicating in the prostration should be done when one is prayer voluntary prayers [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar citing Fath al-Qadir].

To do so in congregational prayers, especially when leading, may entail difficulty on the followers as is expressed in the following Prophetic narration:

“If any of you leads the people in prayer, let them be brief – for verily amongst them are the weak, the sick, and the elderly. And if any of you is praying alone, let them extend as they wish” [Bukhari].

[Tahtawi/Shurunbulali, Hashiyat Maraqi al-Falah]

Following the Sunna Takes Precedence

Even though sending prayers on the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) is one of the greatest good deeds, it is better to follow the practice of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) himself.

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “When any of you bows, let them say, three times, – Subhana Rabbi al-Adhim; and when any of you prostrates, let them say – Subhana Rabbi al-A’ala – three times and that is the least” [Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud].

Summary

If you are praying alone, it is permissible to supplicate in the prostration which includes sending prayers on the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace); otherwise one sticks to the practice of the Prophet – saying Subhana Rabbi al-Adhim thrice.

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Seeking Sacred Knowledge

Launch of SeekersGuidance Arabiyya

Question: I am 25 years of age and many of the Islamic institutes have an age limit where should I go to begin my study of Sacred knowledge?

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Seeking Sacred knowledge is of the highest intentions one can make in the Religion and one’s desire to seek it is a sign of Allah’s favor upon them.

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Whoever Allah intends good by He gives them a deep understanding of the Religion” [Muslim].

Who to Seek Knowledge From

Seeking Sacred knowledge does not need to be through a formalized seminary; although such institutes have great benefits. One should focus their initial efforts on finding true ‘People of Knowledge’ (Ahl al-Ilm).

Imam Muslim, in the preface of his Sahih collection, brings the narration of Muhammad bin Sirin (Allah’s mercy be upon them both), “Indeed this knowledge is the Religion. So be careful who you take your religion from” [Muslim; Muqadima Sahih Muslim].

With the advent of easy modes of transportation and the internet, one can easily gain access to a plethora of sources. There are numerous orators and teachers, countless classes and lectures available, all at one’s fingertips. However, it is of the utmost importance that one seeks out authentic scholarship.

The Chain of Transmission

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “The scholars are the inheritors of the Prophets. The Prophets did not leave behind gold or silver; they merely left behind knowledge. So whoever takes of it takes a large share” [Tirmidhi].

The idea of inheritance is important. Inheritance indicates a bond. A relationship of sorts. A chain. The Prophetic legacy is not merely a passed down compendium of rulings, rather revelation containing transformative guidance that must, first and foremost, be lived.

It is by this implementation, that a true inheritor of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) be distinguished from a mere memorizer of rulings.

What to look for

When looking for a teacher, look for the following qualities:

(1) A firm grasp and understanding of the Religion taken from authentic scholars
(2) Mindfulness (Taqwa)
(3) Humility (Tawadu’)
(4) A great sense of responsibility
(5) Importance of following the Sunna
(6) Preferring the Hereafter over worldliness

[Ghazali; Ihya ‘Ulum al-Din]

What to watch out for

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) sought refuge from knowledge that does not benefit and warned his community from evil scholars.

Be cautious when seeing the following signs:

(1) Excessive argumentation
(2) Worldliness
(3) Self-Praise
(4) Bad etiquettes with the Imams and righteousness of the Religion
(5) Corrupt behavior and character
(6) Arrogance

[Ibid.]

Advice

I would advise starting your journey to seek Sacred knowledge by looking in your area for authentic scholars who meet the above characteristics. In the meantime, SeekersGuidance.org has a large variety of courses on many levels from authentic scholars of great character and humility.

Although studying online can never be a substitute for sitting at the feet of a scholar and studying in-person, it does prove as a great start. I would recommend the Islamic Studies Curriculum.

Most importantly, make sincere intention and ask Allah Most High to increase you in beneficial knowledge – Allah Most High will connect you to the true inheritors.

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Facing the Qibla During a Ritual Bath

Signal Hill Kramat Cape Town

Question: What is the ruling of facing the Qibla during a ritual bath? What does one do if their bath area faces the Qibla?

Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “When you go to relieve yourselves, do not face the Qibla nor turn your backs to it; rather face the east or the west.” Abu Ayyub (the narrator) said, ‘We later came to Syria and found its washrooms built in the direction of the Qibla so we turn away slightly and sought Allah’s forgiveness” [Bukhari].

The Ruling

It is prohibitively disliked to face or turn one’s back to the Qibla while one’s nakedness (awra) is exposed. If, however, one is bathing and their nakedness is covered it is allowed to face the Qibla; although it is still best to turn away from the Qibla slightly [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].

If one’s bath or toilet faces the direction of the Qibla or if their back is directly facing the Qibla, it is recommended to slightly turn away and this will absolve them from the prohibition [Ibid].

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

 

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Removing Make-Up for Wudu

wudu

Question: I am concerned my make-up has not been completely removed. Is my Wudu/Ghusl valid if there is still some make-up on my face? 

Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Before answering your question, certain clarifications must be made:

What is a preventative barrier in Wudu?

The nature of water is that it is a light flowing substance and it reaches even the smallest of crevices. For this reason, the basis is that water does reach the skin and something would have to be a clear impediment of the water for the water to have not reached [Tahtawi/Shurunbulali, Hashiyat Maraqi al-Falah].

Mascara

If the mascara has a thin consistency like that of ink, oil, or lotion (for example), you can consider that the water does permeate through it and wash that which is underneath, because of the aforementioned nature of water [Ibid.].

If, however, the mascara has a paint-like consistency then it is considered a barrier for the water [Ibid.].

You mentioned in your question that the mascara you use is not waterproof. The optimal solution would be to avoid using mascara that is not waterproof, or if you can, only wear mascara on the days that you are not praying.

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences

Beard Grooming

Question: Is it permissible to shave the hair on the cheeks?

Answer: 

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

In short, it is permissible for you to shave the hair on your cheeks.  See the following for the detailed answer.

The Beard (Lihya)

The hair that grows on the cheek is not considered a beard linguistically speaking. For this reason, it is allowed for you to shave it [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar].

Ibn Abidin – one of the great authorities in the Hanafi school – quotes from an earlier work saying, “There is no harm (bas) in taking from the eyebrows and the hair of the face as long as it doesn’t lead to resembling effeminate men” [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar citing the Mudmarat].

Hope this helps.

Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a graduate from Tarim; a student of Habib Umar and other luminaries; and authorized teachers of the Qur’an and the Islamic sciences