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Stains of Filth and Prayer.

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

For some odd reasons the urge for me to pass gas usually arrives only during prayer time which makes it quite difficult to pray for me during the day. The gas stains my pants a bit. Can I pray with the stains?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

Normally, it is disliked (makruh) to pray with some kind of filth on your person or clothing. In cases of difficulty, such as when you’re outside the home and unable to readily purify yourself, it would be excusable.

Consider consulting a medical professional to see if there is anything tht you can do to ease your condition, and continue to ask Allah Most High to facilitate your worship for you without hardship.

(Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah)

Please also see this answer and this one.

And Allah Most High knows best.

[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

Doubts about Cleanliness

Shaykh Salman Younas is asked if minute amounts of filth affect ritual purity.

I prayed my salah and after I came to washroom I found a drop of urine to the size of an ant, so I just soaked my hand with water and rubbed it gently, and did not squeeze that, and the stain was gone too. Please tell me whether I am tahir or najis?

You are not considered impure.

Even if you prayed with a small drop of urine on your body/clothing of the type you describe, this is excused. In the Hanafi school, the extent of approximately 5 cm, in diameter, is excused in liquid filth that is deemed “major filth,” such as urine. While it is best to remove such filth before praying, if one did pray while being effected by this amount of filth, the prayer is valid.

This ruling shows that there is leeway when it comes to the rulings of filth and impurities. As such, we should not be excessive in how we deal with this issue, nor fall into baseless misgivings. The base assumption that we hold regarding our bodies, clothing, place of prayer, etc., is that it is pure unless there is clear evidence to the contrary.

Salman

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

OCD Causing Hardship with Impurities

Ustadh Salman Younas advises on how to deal with impurities when suffering from OCD.

I have been struggling with OCD for the past few years. It’s mainly obsessive thoughts about impurities (najas).  I have read that certain things that are considered najis in the Hanafi madhab aren’t najas in, for example, the Maliki maddhab.

My life would become easier if I could consider less things to be impure since I am very afraid of touching impure things. Is it possible to follow the ruling of other madhabs when it comes to things being impure?

Yes, this would be permitted and particularly if there is a genuine reason to do so in cases of hardship.

Leading Sunni scholars have stated that it is not obligatory for a person to follow a single madhhab on every issue. Rather, he may follow different schools on different issues so long as he does not systematically seek out dispensations, or combine opinions in a way where the end action is one unacceptable in all schools. (Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar)

In your case, if your OCD makes it difficult for you to deal with certain types of impurities, you may treat them as pure if there are other opinions stating so, to avoid the mental anguish that comes with OCD. However, I would advise you to only do this as a temporary solution until you are able to overcome your OCD.

For this, you should seek professional help and advice, and, for the time being, avoid the more technical aspects of fiqh. Rather, focus on the very basics and don’t overburden yourself with details, which might aggravate your situation.

Salman

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Excusable Filth in the Four Madhhabs

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat answers a series of questions about the excusable amount of filth according to the four madhhabs.

Question:

Assalam alaykum wa rahmat Allah wa barakatuh.

I have a big problem. I suffer from OCD. It’s driving me crazy. I need to know how much filth (najasa) is excusable. I know what the four Madhhabs say about excusable amounts of filth for prayer, but I don’t know which is the best and correct position.

Sometimes when urinating I feel a tiny drop on my foot or when I’m washing myself I feel used water drop on my feet but when I check my feet, I don’t see anything. The Shafi‘is say that tiny drops we cannot see are excused and they think its true.

Please tell me which madhhab’s position is true and please explain why? And please tell me if the water of istinja is impure? (Water flows while I’m washing myself.) It doesn’t seem so to me, because there is more water than urine, so the color and smell doesn’t change.

Answer:

Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmat Allah wa barakatuh.

I pray you are well.

The Four Schools of Law

All of the four schools of law are correct, because they are based on sound understandings of the the greatest scholars of the Umma. These scholars had the highest levels of knowledge, understanding, and ability. They did not make rulings up; rather they interpreted the Qurʾan and the Sunna to give the the rulings of the Shariʿa.

So if they are all valid, and all their rulings are correct, which one should you choose to follow? The answer is, the easier one for you, and the one which you can easily learn and apply.

I personally feel that the Hanafi school is very easy to learn; and there is a lot of flexibility in the rulings relating to purity. I think the Shafi‘i is slightly harder in this matter. See which school you can easily learn with local scholars or with a course at SeekersGuidance, and apply it.

Purity

As for the water for istinja, you cannot tell if it is actually impure. Also the fact that it is flowing means it is pure as long as the colour, smell or taste of impurity do not show. You can assume the drops are pure. Even small drops of urine in situations like this are excused (Maydani, al-Lubab fi Sharh al-Kitab; Shurubnulali, Maraqi al-Falah).

I advise you to learn a school with a qualified scholar, and have your questions on purity answered. Also, please look at our OCD archives and get some therapy if you need it to get over the issue.

May Allah facilitate every good for you in this world and the next.

Abdul-Rahim

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.


When Does a Transfer of Filth Occur?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

Some scholars say that if a dry impurity is touched upon by wet hands then it transfers even if the traces can not be seen but the Hanafi school says it does not transfer. Could you provide me an evidence regarding this?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

If a wet limb comes into contact with an item or area that is religiously filthy, there is no transfer of filth unless its traces are clearly manifest on the pure limb.

The reason for this is that the wetness normally transfers and is absorbed by the dry item or area, and not the other way round. This is a straightforward way of looking at the matter as we are looking to see if the filth, which is something discernible, has moved.

Note that there is no tradition (hadith) or Qur’anic verse for every single ruling of law. This is a misunderstanding of how things work. Rather, we derive foundational principles from those and other sources and then derive rulings accordingly.

[Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar ‘ala al-Durr al-Mukhtar]

Please also see: A Reader on Waswasa (Baseless Misgivings) and: How Is Filth Transferred?

And Allah Most High knows best.
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

How to Avoid to Spread Filth When Washing My Hands?

Answered by Shaykh Abdurragmaan Khan

Question: Assalam alaykum,

1. When washing my hands that have najasah on them, does the water that splashes from my hands onto the sides of the sink become dirty or remain clean?

2. One opinion says that madhi (pre-ejeculate) is impure, but is then considered Pure when mixed with mani (semen), because foreplay is a recommended act, and madhi comes from foreplay, and mani comes from orgasm.

In other words, at the beginning of intimacy, madhi exits, and then later mani exits, so can both the fluids be taken as pure in this instance, according to Shafi fiqh?

Answer: Wa alaykum al-Salam

Shukran for your question.

Water and soap that comes in contact with najasah is contaminated with najasah and consequently najis. If you observe this contaminated water splashing on the sides of your basin or on the floor of your shower, then it should be washed away. Please note that all it would require to wash that najasah away, is to pour clean water over it. If however, you have not observed contaminated water splashing anywhere, and merely have doubts that it may or may not have splashed, then there is no need to wash that area. The default ruling is that an area is considered pure until you have certainty that it has been contaminated.

Regarding the question of madhi. Madhi or pre-ejaculate is impure while mani or semen is pure.

What may be causing some confusion here is the fact that semen is made up of two components, 1. sperm which looks like a tadpole and 2. pre-ejaculate. The question thus is, why is pre-ejaculate considered impure individually, but pure when combined with sperm to make semen? And the answer is found in the legal maxim that reads, “the follower receives the ruling of that which it follows”. When pre-ejaculate exists alone it is impure; when it is combined or follows sperm, which is pure, it receives the ruling of that which it follows, and is thus considered pure as well.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam
[Shaykh] Abdurragmaan Khan

Shaykh Abdurragmaan
received ijazah ’ammah from various luminaries, including but not restricted to: Habib Umar ibn Hafiz—a personality who affected him greatly and who has changed his relationship with Allah, Maulana Yusuf Karaan—the former Mufti of Cape Town; Habib ‘Ali al-Mashhur—the current Mufti of Tarim; Habib ‘Umar al-Jaylani—the Shafi‘i Mufti of Makkah; Sayyid Ahmad bin Abi Bakr al-Hibshi; Habib Kadhim as-Saqqaf; Shaykh Mahmud Sa’id Mamduh; Maulana Abdul Hafiz al-Makki; Shaykh Ala ad-Din al-Afghani; Maulana Fazlur Rahman al-Azami and Shaykh Yahya al-Gawthani amongst others.

Can Filth Transfer from Cloth to Cloth?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

Is wearing dry unclean cloth on clean cloth will turn that clean cloth unclean?

Can I pray in that condition?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

Yes, you can pray after changing from ritually filthy clothing into ritually pure clothing without doing anything else.

Filth doesn’t transfer from something dry and ritually filthy to something else dry and ritually pure unless the traces are clearly manifest.

Please also see: How Is Filth Transferred? and: A Reader on Waswasa (Baseless Misgivings)

And Allah Most High knows best.

wassalam,
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

How Is Filth Transferred?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Question: Assalamu alaykum

How is filth transferred from clothes to clothes or from clothes to sofas?

Answer:  Walaikum assalam,

I hope you’re doing well, insha’Allah.

(1) The area affected by filth is washed till the removable traces of the filth itself are removed.
(2) If dripping wet filth comes into contract with a clean surface, filth is considered to have transferred to the area that came into contact with it
(3) However, with moist (non-dripping) filth, filth is only considered to have transferred if traces of the filth appear on the otherwise clean surface.

[ref: Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah]

Please see: Filth, Carpets and Misgivings

[Shaykh] Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Faraz Rabbani is a scholar and researcher of Islamic law and Executive Director of SeekersHub Global After ten years overseas, Shaykh Faraz returned to Canada in the Summer of 2007. In May 2008 he founded SeekersHub Global to deal with the urgent need to spread Islamic knowledge—both online and on the ground—in a reliable, relevant, inspiring, and accessible manner. He has been repeatedly listed as one of the world’s 500 most influential Muslims (The Muslim500).

Does Filth Touching the Skin Render a Ghusl Invalid?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum

1) If a person during a ghusl washes his arm but while washing the rest of body some filth touches his arm and he does not wash arm again. Is his ghusl valid?

2) If the above mentioned person performs a wudu after some days will his prayer be valid?

3) If a person is in state of janaba has the intention of a sunna ghusl will that ghusl be valid?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

The ritual bath (ghusl) will be valid in all of the aforementioned scenarios. Ignore misgivings.

Please see: The Ritual Bath (ghusl): Obligatory, Recommended, and Disliked Acts and: A Reader on Waswasa (Baseless Misgivings)

And Allah Most High alone knows best.

wassalam,
[Ustadh] Tabraze Azam

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Tabraze Azam holds a BSc in Computer Science from the University of Leicester, where he also served as the President of the Islamic Society. He memorised the entire Qur’an in his hometown of Ipswich at the tender age of sixteen, and has since studied the Islamic Sciences in traditional settings in the UK, Jordan and Turkey. He is currently pursuing advanced studies in Jordan, where he is presently based with his family.

What Are the Things Deemed Filthy in the Hanafi School?

Answered by SeekersHub Answers Service

Question: Assalam aleykum

What are the things deemed fitlhy in the Hanafi school?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

Filth (najasa) is of two types: heavy and light.

Heavy filth includes the following:

-spilled blood,
-feces,
-wine,
-sperm or sexual fluid.

Light filth includes the following:

-urine of animals whose meat is permissible to eat,
-urine of horses,
-drippings of birds whose meat is not permissible to eat.
[Ascent to felicity]

And Allah alone gives success.

wassalam,

SeekersHub Answers Service

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani