Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

Performing the `Eid Prayer at Home Due to Coronavirus COVID-19, Allowed?

By Editorial Staff

May Allah accept our good deeds.
Eid Mubarak

`Eid al-Fitr (festival of fast-breaking) and `Eid al-Ad-ha (festival of sacrifice) are the two main festivals in Islam.

There are certain acts of worship and recommendable things that Muslims should observe on those days to express their gratitude to Allah.  Among these acts of worship is the ‘Eid prayer. Allah says,

“Rather, (He wills) for you to complete the number (of prescribed days) _ and that you shall extol God for (the blessing of faith to) which He has guided you, so that you may give thanks (to Him alone for easing its way and establishing you therein).” (Quran 2: 185)

The Legal Ruling Regarding the `Eid Prayer

Scholars hold different opinions concerning performing the `Eid prayer. There are three rulings as follows:

1. Individually Obligatory

This means that every Muslim must perform it. This is the opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah and Ibn Taimiyah. They quoted the following Hadith to support their opinion:

Umm ‘Atiyya reported: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) commanded us to bring out on `Eid al-Fitr (festival of fast-breaking) and `Eid al-Ad-ha (festival of sacrifice) young women, menstruating women and purdah-observing ladies, menstruating women kept back from prayer, but participated in goodness and supplication of the Muslims. I said: Messenger of Allah, one of us does not have an outer garment (to cover her face and body). He said: Let her sister cover her with her outer garment. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

They interpret the commandment in the hadith to mean obligation. Although it is not obligatory for women to perform the prayer in congregation, the Prophet (peace be upon him) ordered them to witness the `Eid prayer. This, in turn, means that it is obligatory for men.

2. Collectively Obligatory

This means that the `Eid prayer must be performed. Here, not every single person falls under the obligation but a group can perform the obligation on behalf of others.

This opinion is, however, not that strong. If the `Eid prayer is collectively obligatory, women won’t fall under the obligation which is in contradiction with the above mentioned Hadith.

3. Sunnah or Recommended

If we take the following Hadith into consideration, we can understand the commandment in the above mentioned hadith to mean recommendation. This is the opinion of the majority of the scholars.

A man from Najd with unkempt hair came to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and we heard his loud voice but could not understand what he was saying, till he came near and then we came to know that he was asking about Islam. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “You have to offer prayers perfectly five times in a day and night (24 hours).” The man asked, “Is there any more (praying)?” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) replied, “No, but if you want to offer the Nawafil (voluntary) prayers (you can).” … And then that man retreated saying, “By Allah! I will neither do less nor more than this.” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “If what he said is true, then he will be successful (i.e. he will be granted Paradise).”  (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

When to Perform the `Eid Prayer?

The `Eid prayer has the same time as Duha prayer. Duha means the morning sunshine. In the technical usage it refers to a specific time that starts about 10 or 15 minutes after the sunrise and finishes 10 or 15 minutes before the Dhuhr (noon) prayer or before it’s high noon i.e. when the sun starts to move from its highest point in the sky towards the direction of the sunset.

Where to Perform the `Eid Prayer?

The original legal ruling is that it is recommended to perform the `Eid prayer in the open, namely, outside mosques in a wide place. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and his Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) used to perform it in the desert.

Is It Allowed to Perform the `Eid Prayer at Home Due to Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic?

In their reply to this legal issue, AMJA Resident Fatwa Committee issued the following legal ruling:

The`Eid prayer is one of the obvious symbols of Islam. The scholars’ rulings on it vary, deeming it a communal obligation, an individual obligation, or at least a highly stressed sunnah.

Because that which is easy is not voided due to difficulty, so long as it is possible, even in the most stringent of circumstances, it should not be neglected.

Similar to the Jumu’ah (Friday) prayer, which is performed within its permitted framework, even if only by the masjid administration, so too should the `Eid prayer be performed.

The issue of performing the `Eid prayer at home for those who missed it in congregation is rather lenient.

While the khutbah is a condition of validity for Jumu’ah, it is a recommendation (not mandatory) for both `Eids. This is supported by the narration of ʿAbdullāh b. al-Sa’ib who said, “I attended the Eid with Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) and he said, ‘We are going to deliver a sermon, so whoever wants to sit for the sermon should sit, and whoever wants to leave should leave’.” Therefore, neither the khutbah nor listening to it is a requirement of the Eid prayer.

Though the Friday prayer should be primarily performed in the masjid, the `Eidprayer is primarily performed outdoors, in an open space outside of the masjid.

Because of that, the majority of the jurists, with the exception of the Hanafis, have declared it permissible to perform it at home for whoever missed it in congregation. It has been narrated on the authority of Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) that if he missed the `Eid prayer with the imam, he would gather his family and servants, and ʿAbdullāh b. Abi Utbah would lead them in two rak’at, making takbir.

Al-Muzani related from al-Shāfi’i (may Allah have mercy on him) in Mukhtasar al-Umm, that “the individual should pray both `Eids in their home, and so should the traveler, the bondservant, and the woman.”

According to the Malikis, al-Khurashy, a Maliki jurist, said, “It is recommended for whoever misses the `Eid prayer with the imam to pray it. Should that be done in a congregation or alone? There are two opinions” (summarized from Sharh al-Khurashi, 2/104).

Al-Mardawi, a Hanbali jurist, said in al-Insaf, “If they miss the prayer (meaning `Eid) it is recommended to make it up in the manner it is normally prayed (just as the imam prays it).”

The fatwa of the Permanent Committee in Saudi Arabia is based on this.

Accordingly, there is no harm in performing the `Eid prayer at home, individually or in (one’s household) congregation, for those who miss the `Eid prayer in congregation or are unable to perform it in congregation due to some constraint.

There is also nothing wrong with listening to a sermon on TV, online, and so on, after performing the `Eidprayer at home, either alone or in a private congregation, as a general reminder; because general reminders are permitted regardless of the time or setting.

How to Perform the `Eid Prayer?

The `Eid Prayer is two rak’ahs (units of prayer).

First, you make the intention in your heart for the `Eid Prayer.

Second, while facing the Qibla (direction of the Ka`bah), start your prayer with the Opening Takbir (saying Allahu Akbar).

Third, recite the opening supplication. There are a few authentic supplications. However, the most authentic supplication in this regard is the following:

‘Allahumma, baa`id baini wa baina khatayaya kama baa`adta baina l-mashriqi wa l-maghrib.

Allahumma naqqini min khatayaya kama yunaqqa th-thawbu l-abyadu mina d-danas.

Allahumma ighsil khatayaya bi l-maa’i wa th-thalji wa l-barad

(O Allah! Set me apart from my sins (faults) as the East and West are set apart from each other and clean me from sins as a white garment is cleaned of dirt (after thorough washing). O Allah! Wash off my sins with water, snow and hail.)”

Fourth, recite the recommended extra takbirs (saying Allahu Akbar). There are many divergent opinions regarding the number of the extra takbirs. However, all the opinions are acceptable according to Imam Ahmad. The majority of scholars including the shafi’i school of fiqh are of the view that you say takbir seven times. Acoording to Maliki and Hanbali schools, the number of the extra takbirs is six. It is also recommended to raise your hands to your shoulder or ears level while saying the extra takbirs. If you make a mistake or forget any of the extra takbirs, the prayer is valid.

Fifth, recite Surat Al-Fatihah (the Opening chapter of the Quran), then Surat Al-A’la (The Most High).

Six, complete the first rak’ah as you do in your usual prayer i.e. to perform ruku’ (bowing) and sujud (prostration two times) then stand up for the second rak’ah while saying Allahu Akbar.

Seventh, recite the extra takbir for the second rak’ah. This time the number of takbirs is five not including takbir while standing for the second rak’ah.

Eighth, recite Surat Al-Fatihah, then Surat Al-Ghashiyah (The Whelming).

Ninth, Complete the `Eid Prayer as you do in usual prayer.

Some Recommended Acts of the Day of `Eid

1. Eating before `Eid Prayer on `Eid Al-Fitr

On `Eid al-Fitr, it is recommended to eat dates or something else if there are not any dates before performing the prayer. This shows how obedient Muslims are in hastening to fulfill Allah’s commands by breaking the fast.

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) never proceeded (for the prayer) on the Day of `Eid al-Fitr unless he had eaten some dates. Anas also narrated: The Prophet (ﷺ) used to eat odd number of dates.

2. Reciting Takbir in a Loud Voice

Allah says,

“Rather, (He wills) for you to complete the number (of prescribed days) _ and that you shall extol God for (the blessing of faith to) which He has guided you, so that you may give thanks (to Him alone for easing its way and establishing you therein).” (Quran 2: 185)

‘Extol God’ means to say takbir. The majority of scholars are of the opinion that the time for takbir on `Eid al-Fitr starts from after the dawn prayer until the time for performing the `Eid prayer. Others say that it starts immediately after seeing the new moon of the month of Shawwal.

There are many forms of takbir. The following is one of the most famous:

Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar,

laa ilaha ill-Allah,

wa Allahu akbar, Allah akbar, wa Lillaah il-hamd

(Allah is the Most Great, Allah is the Most Great, there is no god but Allah, Allah is the Most Great, Allah is the Most Great, and for Allah is all praise).

3. Offering Congratulations

People may offer congratulations through phone calls and messages, etc. Different expressions can be used here such as ‘may Allah accept our and your good deeds’ or `Eid Mubarak’ (I wish you a blessed `Eid), etc.

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

Performing the ‘Eid Prayer at Home Due to Coronavirus COVID-19, Allowed?

By Editorial Staff

May Allah accept our and your good deeds. Eid Mubarak!

‘Eid al-Fitr (festival of fast-breaking) and ‘Eid al-Ad-ha (festival of sacrifice) are the two main festivals in Islam.

There are certain acts of worship and etiquette Muslims should observe on those days to express their gratitude to Allah.  Among these acts of worship is the ‘Eid prayer. Allah says,

“Rather, (He wills) for you to complete the number (of prescribed days) _ and that you shall extol God for (the blessing of faith to) which He has guided you, so that you may give thanks (to Him alone for easing its way and establishing you therein).” (Quran 2: 185)

The Legal Ruling Regarding the `Eid Prayer

Scholars hold different opinions concerning performing the ‘Eid prayer. There are three rulings as follows:

1. Individually Obligatory

This means that every Muslim must perform it. This is the opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah and Shaikh al-Islam Ibn Taimiyah. They quoted the following Hadith to support their opinion:

Umm ‘Atiyya reported: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) commanded us to bring out on ‘Eid al-Fitr (festival of fast-breaking) and ‘Eid al-Ad-ha (festival of sacrifice) young women, menstruating women and purdah-observing ladies, menstruating women kept back from prayer, but participated in goodness and supplication of the Muslims. I said: Messenger of Allah, one of us does not have an outer garment (to cover her face and body). He said: Let her sister cover her with her outer garment. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

They interpret the commandment in the hadith to mean obligation. Although it is not obligatory for women to perform the prayer in congregation, the Prophet (peace be upon him) ordered them to witness the ‘Eid prayer. This, in turn, means that it is obligatory for men.

2. Collectively Obligatory

This means that the ‘Eid prayer must be performed. Here, not every single person falls under the obligation. A group can perform the obligation on behalf of others.

This opinion is, however, not that strong. If the ‘Eid prayer is collectively obligatory, women won’t fall under the obligation which is in contradiction with the above mentioned Hadith.

3. Sunnah or Recommended

If we take the following Hadith into consideration, we can understand the commandment in the above mentioned hadith to mean recommendation. This is the opinion of the majority of the scholars.

A man from Najd with unkempt hair came to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and we heard his loud voice but could not understand what he was saying, till he came near and then we came to know that he was asking about Islam. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “You have to offer prayers perfectly five times in a day and night (24 hours).” The man asked, “Is there any more (praying)?” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) replied, “No, but if you want to offer the Nawafil (voluntary) prayers (you can).” … And then that man retreated saying, “By Allah! I will neither do less nor more than this.” Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “If what he said is true, then he will be successful (i.e. he will be granted Paradise).”  (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

When to Perform the ‘Eid Prayer?

The ‘Eid prayer has the same time as Duha prayer. Duha means the morning sunshine. In the technical usage it refers to a specific time that starts about 10 or 15 minutes after the sunrise and finishes 10 or 15 minutes before the Dhuhr (noon) prayer or before it’s high noon i.e. when the sun starts to move from its highest point in the sky towards the direction of the sunset.

Where to Perform the ‘Eid Prayer?

The original legal ruling is that it is recommended to perform the ‘Eid prayer in the open, namely, outside mosques in a wide place. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and his Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) used to perform it in the desert.

Is It Allowed to Perform the ‘Eid Prayer at Home Due to Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic?

In their reply to this legal issue, AMJA Resident Fatwa Committee issued the following legal ruling:

The Eid prayer is one of the obvious symbols of Islam. The scholars’ rulings on it vary, deeming it a communal obligation, an individual obligation, or at least a highly stressed sunnah.

Because that which is easy is not voided due to difficulty, so long as it is possible, even in the most stringent of circumstances, it should not be neglected.

Similar to the Jumu’ah (Friday) prayer, which is performed within its permitted framework, even if only by the masjid administration, so too should the Eid prayer be performed.

The issue of performing the Eid prayer at home for those who missed it in congregation is rather lenient.

While the khutbah is a condition of validity for Jumu’ah, it is a recommendation (not mandatory) for both Eids. This is supported by the narration of ʿAbdullāh b. al-Sa’ib who said, “I attended the Eid with Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) and he said, ‘We are going to deliver a sermon, so whoever wants to sit for the sermon should sit, and whoever wants to leave should leave’.” Therefore, neither the khutbah nor listening to it is a requirement of the Eid prayer.

Though the Friday prayer should be primarily performed in the masjid, the Eid prayer is primarily performed outdoors, in an open space outside of the masjid.

Because of that, the majority of the jurists, with the exception of the Hanafis, have declared it permissible to perform it at home for whoever missed it in congregation. It has been narrated on the authority of Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) that if he missed the Eid prayer with the imam, he would gather his family and servants, and ʿAbdullāh b. Abi Utbah would lead them in two rak’at, making takbir.

Al-Muzani related from al-Shāfi’i (may Allah have mercy on him) in Mukhtasar al-Umm, that “the individual should pray both Eids in their home, and so should the traveler, the bondservant, and the woman.”

According to the Malikis, al-Khurashy, a Maliki jurist, said, “It is recommended for whoever misses the Eid prayer with the imam to pray it. Should that be done in a congregation or alone? There are two opinions” (summarized from Sharh al-Khurashi, 2/104).

Al-Mardawi, a Hanbali jurist, said in al-Insaf, “If they miss the prayer (meaning Eid) it is recommended to make it up in the manner it is normally prayed (just as the imam prays it).”

The fatwa of the Permanent Committee in Saudi Arabia is based on this.

Accordingly, there is no harm in performing the Eid prayer at home, individually or in (one’s household) congregation, for those who miss the Eid prayer in congregation or are unable to perform it in congregation due to some constraint.

There is also nothing wrong with listening to a sermon on TV, online, and so on, after performing the Eid prayer at home, either alone or in a private congregation, as a general reminder; because general reminders are permitted regardless of the time or setting.

How to Perform the ‘Eid Prayer?

The ‘Eid Prayer is two rak’ahs (units of prayer).

First, you make the intention in your heart for the ‘Eid Prayer.

Second, while facing the Qibla (direction of the Ka`bah), start your prayer with the Opening Takbir (saying Allahu Akbar).

Third, recite the opening supplication. There are a few authentic supplications. However, the most authentic supplication in this regard is the following:

‘Allahumma, baa`id baini wa baina khatayaya kama baa`adta baina l-mashriqi wa l-maghrib.

Allahumma naqqini min khatayaya kama yunaqqa th-thawbu l-abyadu mina d-danas.

Allahumma ighsil khatayaya bi l-maa’i wa th-thalji wa l-barad

(O Allah! Set me apart from my sins (faults) as the East and West are set apart from each other and clean me from sins as a white garment is cleaned of dirt (after thorough washing). O Allah! Wash off my sins with water, snow and hail.)”

Fourth, recite the recommended extra takbirs (saying Allahu Akbar). There are many divergent opinions regarding the number of the extra takbirs. However, all the opinions are acceptable according to Imam Ahmad. The majority of scholars including the shafi’i school of fiqh are of the view that you say takbir seven times. Acoording to Maliki and Hanbali schools, the number of the extra takbirs is six. It is also recommended to raise your hands to your shoulder or ears level while saying the extra takbirs. If you make a mistake or forget any of the extra takbirs, the prayer is valid.

Fifth, recite Surat Al-Fatihah (the Opening chapter of the Quran), then Surat Al-A’la (The Most High).

Six, complete the first rak’ah as you do in your usual prayer i.e. to perform ruku’ (bowing) and sujud (prostration two times) then stand up for the second rak’ah while saying Allahu Akbar.

Seventh, recite the extra takbir for the second rak’ah. This time the number of takbirs is five not including takbir while standing for the second rak’ah.

Eighth, recite Surat Al-Fatihah, then Surat Al-Ghashiyah (The Whelming).

Ninth, Complete the ‘Eid Prayer as you do in usual prayer.

Some Recommended Acts of the Day of ‘Eid

1. Eating before ‘Eid Prayer on ‘Eid Al-Fitr

On ‘Eid al-Fitr, it is recommended to eat dates or something else if there are not any dates before performing the prayer. This shows how obedient Muslims are in hastening to fulfill Allah’s commands by breaking the fast.

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) never proceeded (for the prayer) on the Day of ‘Eid al-Fitr unless he had eaten some dates. Anas also narrated: The Prophet (ﷺ) used to eat odd number of dates.

2. Reciting Takbir in a Loud Voice

Allah says,

“Rather, (He wills) for you to complete the number (of prescribed days) _ and that you shall extol God for (the blessing of faith to) which He has guided you, so that you may give thanks (to Him alone for easing its way and establishing you therein).” (Quran 2: 185)

‘Extol God’ means to say takbir. The majority of scholars are of the opinion that the time for takbir on ‘Eid al-Fitr starts from after the dawn prayer until the time for performing the ‘Eid prayer. Others say that it starts immediately after seeing the new moon of the month of Shawwal.

There are many forms of takbir. The following is one of the most famous:

Allahu akbar, Allahu akbar,

laa ilaha ill-Allah,

wa Allahu akbar, Allah akbar, wa Lillaah il-hamd

(Allah is the Most Great, Allah is the Most Great, there is no god but Allah, Allah is the Most Great, Allah is the Most Great, and for Allah is all praise).

3. Offering Congratulations

People may offer congratulations through phone calls and messages, etc. Different expressions can be used here such as ‘may Allah accept our and your good deeds’ or ‘Eid Mubarak’ (I wish you a blessed ‘Eid), etc.

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

The Ruling on Praying Jumuah through Broadcast

AMJA has received many questions regarding the ruling pertaining to holding Friday sermon and prayer services in the mosque with the least number of people needed to fulfill the Jumuah quorum, while broadcasting the services live to the other members of the community for them to listen to the sermon and then follow the imam in prayer, all while in their homes.

This would be to avoid large gatherings in accordance with the recommendations of state governments and health authorities, as well as to prevent the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

It is not permissible according to any valid madhhab for the gap between the rows to be miles long, with tens of buildings and roads as dividers between them.

The answers to these questions are as follows:

It is not permissible according to any valid madhhab for the gap between the rows to be miles long, with tens of buildings and roads as dividers between them.

While they agree on overlooking a customarily small gap, they disagree concerning the effect of a wall, road, river, and the like, which would cause separation.

Some of them say that the maximum distance allowed between one row and the next is three hundred cubits (about five hundred feet).

The valid madhhabs do agree that very long distances (as mentioned in the questions) cannot be overlooked, and that this would nullify the Friday prayer. This has been the practice of the Muslims, is the fatwa given by the four followed madhhabs, and is an opinion closer to the practical consensus of the Muslims.

Furthermore, to have individuals or groups praying in homes while following the imam via live broadcast is a matter in contradiction with the objective of the Legislator (Allah), which is to have people gather in one place during Friday services and congregational prayers.

In addition to this, it is possible that the live stream cuts out, or lags such that people see the imam bowing or prostrating later than he actually did.

Another problem of allowing people to follow through broadcasting is that it may lead to people continuing to pray the Friday prayer at home even after this current pandemic passes, which would lead to the loss of reverence for Jumuah, and the above-mentioned objective of the Legislator to have the Muslims gather in once place would not be achieved.

That being said, there is no problem with the imam giving the sermon in the mosque for a small number of people in accordance with what health authorities allow, even if there are only three other congregants, and broadcasting this via the internet (or local TV or the like) for other community members to benefit from hearing it.

However, when it is time to pray, those in their homes would pray the dhuhr prayer with four raka’at. The dhuhr prayer could be prayed individually, or in congregation as a family with one of them leading the prayer.


Source: amjaonline.org

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

All About Ramadan 1441-2020

Islam aims to transform the whole life of man into a life of worship. Fasting is the second act of worship that Allah enjoins upon the Muslim that helps us come to that life of total worship.

Sawm or the Fasting means abstaining from dawn to sunset from eating, drinking and sex.

Like the prayer, this act of worship has been part of the Shari`ah given by all the Prophets. Their followers fasted as we do.

However, the rules, the number of days, and the periods prescribed for fasting have varied from one Shari`ah to another. Today, although fasting remains a part of most religions in some form or other, people have often changed its original form by accretions of their own.

O Believers! Fasting is ordained for you, even as it was ordained for those before you. (Al-Baqarah 2:183)

Why has this particular act of worship been practiced in all eras?

Ramadan is earmarked for all Muslims to fast together, to ensure similar results, turning individual into collective i`badah, and suffusing the whole environment with a spirit of righteousness, virtue and piety. As flowers blossom in spring, so does taqwa in Ramadan.

The Prophet, blessings and peace be on him, said:

Every good deed of a man is granted manifold increase, ten to seven hundred times. But says Allah: Fasting is an exception; it is exclusively for Me, and I reward for it as much as I wish. (Al-Bukhari, Muslim)

So, how do we fast in Ramadan? what is true spirit of fasting as an act of worship? And what is the wisdom behind fasting? How can we reap the benefits of witnessing the blessed month of Ramadan?

In this Special Folder (All About Ramadan), we will focus on fasting and its related issues.

Prayers of the Pious (With Sh. Omar Suleiman)

Prayers of the Pious

(1) The Best of My Days

In the first episode of the Prayers of the Pious series, we cover the righteous dua that Abu Bakr (r) made at the end of his lifetime.

Read More…

Your Health in Ramadan

Fasting and Overall Health

Fasting and Overall Health

In some cases, fasting could do more harm than good to some ill people, but could be beneficial to others, and even improve health. Who is exempted from fasting, who can decide this? How should fasting…

Read also:

Last Ten Days of Ramadan

Excellence and Rulings of the Last Ten Days of Ramadan

The last ten nights of Ramadan are very special. These are the nights that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) would spend in constant worship. Among these nights is Laylat al-Qadr…

Read also:

 

E-Books on Ramadan

New Muslim Ramadan Guide

New Muslim Ramadan Guide

With the coming of Ramadan, every Muslim has to prepare himself for that blessed month. This book tackles the most important issues that a Muslim has to be aware of before going on fasting. It tries to present the rulings of fasting as well as the spiritual objectives for which fasting was obligated. Take your time in going through this helpful book and we hope that we provided something that has been beneficial for you.

Read also:

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

“Jesus Fasted on Many Occasions”: This Christian Man Explains Why He Fasts During Ramadan

By Craig Considine

My encounters with Muslims over the years have taught me that criticizing and condemning faiths and religious groups is futile.

This only exacerbates the strength of the so-called “clash of civilizations.”

My fasting is about the spirit of Ramadan and how this period brings me and others closer to the Almighty.

Instead of fanning the flames of arrogance and ignorance, I do what Jesus called on me to do – engage with humanity and offer a hand of peace to people who have been branded “enemies.”

It is in this spirit that I decided to participate in something that is both inherently Christian and Islamic – fasting during Ramadan.

I broke the Ramadan fast with the Clear Lake Islamic Center and Muslim American Society in Seabrook, Texas. This gathering included people of diverse social backgrounds.

I had the opportunity to speak on Prophet Muhammad’s model of social integration and how this model can be implemented in society today. I heard others speak about the Prophet’s legacy of social justice activism and the importance of doing good deeds for mankind in the U.S. and beyond.

Though I had previously participated in fasting with Muslims, the Clear Lake gathering was special because it included many non-Muslims who gathered to show support for their Muslim neighbors, and to learn more about Islam.

Muslims believe that fasting is an essential pillar of the Islamic faith – indeed, fasting during Ramadan is one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

Muslims during this holy month focus not only abstaining from food and impurities in body/mind, but also the awareness of a Higher Being and His expectations of us as human beings.

Awareness of God, or taqwa in Islamic terms, is cultivated by Muslims during Ramadan through charity and service to mankind.

It is also nourished when Muslim communities worldwide invite their neighbors to break bread with them and spread the message of peace.

Christians like myself also believe that fasting is paramount to the Christian tradition. Jesus practiced fasting on many occasions, especially when he was tempted by evil (Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:12-12; Luke 4:1-4).

The purpose of Jesus’ fasting was simple – to draw nearer to God for guidance. Ramadan allows me – a follower of Jesus – to draw closer to God and all of His creation, which includes a wide range of races, ethnicities, cultures, and nations.

In the context of encounters with Muslims, Ramadan also teaches me that my well-being is dependent upon the well-being of my neighbors and enemies.

If Muslims suffer, I suffer too because we are part of the same community.

Our well-being depends on our shared commitment to social harmony and unity.

While solidarity and interfaith dialogue may not be obviously linked to fasting, they do certainly capture the spirit of Ramadan.

The Qur’an (2:185) states:

“It was the month of Ramadan in which the Qur’an was revealed from on high as a guidance for humanity and a self-evident proof of that guidance, and as the standard by which to discern the true from the false.”

This passage focuses on humanity and righteousness, not closed-knit communities and wrongdoing. This universalist message calls on human beings to be compassion and just, not divisive and cruel.

Prophet Muhammad reiterated these egalitarian messages when he warned mankind not to fast if fasting does not improve one’s community.

He stated: “If anyone does not refrain from lies and false conduct, God has no need for him to abstain from his food and drink.”

Muhammad’s statement reveals that Ramadan is about more than abstaining from food – it is also about spiritual nourishment and how good relations between groups of people is expected of us by God.

My fasting was more than a simple gesture of friendship in order to build bridges of understanding between Muslims and Christians.

My fasting is about the spirit of Ramadan and how this period brings me and others closer to the Almighty.

I observed Ramadan not because I am Muslim, but because I am a Christian and a human being who cares about my fellow man.

Each and every Ramadan is an opportunity for us all to engage in the “dialogue of civilizations,” where people of various faiths come together and unite under the banner of humanity.

This is the formula to cure our world of its many ills.  This is the commandment of Muhammad and Jesus.


This article was originally shared on Mvslim.com on the 27/05/18.


About the author:

Craig Considine (Irish: Carrig MacConsáidín) is a Catholic American and native of Massachusetts. As a sociologist, he focuses on religion, Islam, Christianity, interfaith, race and ethnicity, identity as well as comparative research and ethnography.

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

British Muslims find new ways to be together for Ramadan under lockdown

With mosques closed, prayers are moving online and video conferencing apps will be used for iftar parties at sunset.

Finsbury Park mosque, north London. Islamic centres across the country have suspended activities during lockdown.

At Finsbury Park mosque in north London – once a byword for extremism, now a model of tolerance and community outreach – the first night of Ramadan heralds a month of communal praying, eating and charity work. About 2,000 people attend prayers each day. Volunteers cram into its kitchen to prepare iftar, the meal that breaks the Ramadan fast at sunset, for 300 people each night.

Not this year. “We will miss all that,” said Mohammed Kozbar, the mosque’s general secretary. The building’s gates are locked, with only security guards patrolling its prayer halls and community spaces. “I visited last week. It was heartbreaking to see it empty and silent,” said Kozbar.

The world’s 1.8bn Muslims are facing the most important period of the Islamic year, the holy month of Ramadan, which starts this week, under lockdown because of the global coronavirus pandemic.

Mosques in most countries are shut and gatherings forbidden. The holy sites of Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia are under curfew. The al-Aqsa mosque and Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem’s Old City are closed and prayers suspended.

In the UK, the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) called for the suspension of all congregational activities at mosques and Islamic centres on 16 March, a week before the government announced all places of worship must close under the lockdown order.

On Friday, the Mosques and Imams National Advisory Board said Islamic buildings would remain closed during Ramadan until the lockdown is lifted. “It would be deemed extremely irresponsible to congregate for night prayers or hold religious gatherings during this Ramadan in any mosque or houses with people who are not members of the immediate household,” said Qari Asim, a Leeds imam and chair of the board.

“During the epidemic, the desire to perform prayers with a congregation in a mosque comes second to saving lives.”

For Muslims, to be unable to take part in congregational prayers and break the fast with family and friends during Ramadan was “emotionally challenging, frustrating and culturally alien”, he added.

Shelina Janmohamed, the author of Generation M: Young Muslims Changing the World and vice-president of Islamic marketing at Ogilvy Consulting, said: “This is going to be the most unusual Ramadan of my lifetime and I think in the living memory of Muslims across the UK.”

The Islamic holy month was “a time of togetherness and spiritual congregation. Those are the two anchors [of Ramadan], and built into that is a nostalgia around traditions and rituals. Even those who might not normally classify themselves as observant Muslims feel drawn to Ramadan because those feelings of togetherness and community are built into us from childhood.”

Like other faiths, Muslims are using technology to meet the challenges of lockdown. Ramadan prayers and the nightly recitation of the Qur’an will move online, and fundraising for charities will also be digital. Platforms such as Zoom are expected to host iftar parties.

Guidance is being drawn up by Islamic scholars on exemptions from fasting for people who are vulnerable to coronavirus. Muslims working long shifts in essential services will “need to be pragmatic in their approach” to fasting, said Harun Khan, secretary general of the MCB.

“This Ramadan will be at a slower pace. It will give us more time for reflection and the opportunity to be closer to God,” he said. Instead of visiting different mosques every day, Khan will be spending Ramadan at home with his immediate family.

According to Asim: “There is likely to be a tiny group of zealous people who may try to organise iftar events or congregational night prayers in their homes. My message to them is that selfishness has no place with God.”

He also warned that extreme rightwing groups were “trying to use the pandemic to create division” and were scapegoating Muslims for the spread of the virus.

At Finsbury Park mosque, there are plans to distribute iftar meals to people in need or alone who would normally come in person. “People who volunteer with us every Ramadan are calling to say, ‘Please, how can we help?’,” said Kozbar.

The mosque will be streaming lectures and prayers, offering online counselling and organising members to take food to staff at nearby hospitals. “This lockdown is something new for us, like everyone else. It’s a very difficult time, but we want to do our bit.”


Source: The Guardian

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

Coronavirus: BBC Begins Broadcasting Weekly Islamic Sermons as Mosques Remain Shut

Local radio to broadcast weekly Islamic religious service in the absence of congregational prayer.

The broadcast aims to create a radio community when there can not be a physical one.

Muslim communities in the city have become able to tune in to BBC Radio Leicester on Friday mornings, when an imam will share reflections and Islamic readings.

To help Muslims self-isolating at homes, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has begun airing Islamic reflections and prayers on 14 local radio stations as mosques remain shut amid the coronavirus pandemic, Leicester Mercury reported.

From Friday, April 3, Muslim communities in the city have become able to tune in to BBC Radio Leicester on Friday mornings, when an imam will share reflections and Islamic readings.

In accordance with Government guidance, religious institutions have now closed to the public, including the many mosques across the city. The changes have affected the daily routine of many Muslims who attend a mosque regularly to pray.

Now, in addition to the weekly Christian service broadcast locally on Sundays, a spot for Muslim listeners will coincide with the day of Jummah – the Friday prayers that hold special significance in Islam.

Each week, at 5.50am, a different imam will lead the broadcast, reciting a verse from the Quran or saying from the Prophet, then translate it and talk about its relevance today followed by a minute of prayer.

A senior imam in Leeds, Qari Asim MBE, was the first to lead the weekly service.

Chris Burns, head of BBC Local Radio, said: “Local radio is all about connecting communities and we hope these weekly reflections will go some way to helping Muslims feel a sense of community while they are isolating.”

While many Muslims already pray at home, for some people an absence congregational prayer in a mosque will be missed, especially during Ramadan.

The religious services have begun broadcasting on 14 local radio stations across the UK, including Leicester.

The broadcasts will also be available to listen to afterwards on the BBC Sounds website.

The stations broadcasting the reflections are:

Leeds

Sheffield

Lancashire

Manchester

WM

Leicester

Stoke

Derby

Nottingham

Coventry and Warwickshire

Three Counties

London

Merseyside

Berkshire


Source: https://www.leicestermercury.co.uk with some modifications

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

A Documentary on Zamzam Water!

This is a documentary on the blessed Well of Zamzam. It reminds us about the story of Hajar, the wife of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him), and her baby child Ishmael (peace be upon him). Hajar (peace be upon her) was alone in the desert with her child Ishmael (peace be upon him), who was about to die out of thirst. She, then, walked seven times between the two Mounts of Safa and Marwah in the hope that she would find water. At last, the archangel Gabriel (peace be upon him) came and struck the earth with his heel or wing. The water issued forth.

Every Muslim, whether performing Hajj and ‘Umrah or not, is recommended to drink from the the blessed water of Zamzam. Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) described the water as being a blessing and food that satisfies.

In this video, you will know more about this blessed water; pumping, drawing, distribution, etc.

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

Salat Al-Istisqa’ (Prayer For Rain)

By Dr. Salih Al-Fawzan

Istisqa’ prayer is a means of seeking rain from Allah, Exalted be He, during times of drought. That is, people are naturally disposed to ask help from the One Who is able to support them; Allah Alone.

This prayer was known among the previous nations. It is regarded also as one of the acts of the prophets (peace be upon them all). Allah, Exalted be He, says:

“And [recall] when Moses prayed for water for his people…” (Quran: Al-Baqarah: 60)

Similarly, Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) performed Prayer for Rain for his people many times, and in many ways. In addition, Muslim scholars unanimously agree on the legality of such an act.

The Prayer for Rain is ordained during times of drought and times when rain fails, which causes harm to people. Then there is no way out except by supplicating their Lord and asking Him for water (rain).

When to perform Salat al-Istisqa’ (prayer for rain)?

The Prayer for Rain is ordained during times of drought and times when rain fails, which causes harm to people. Then there is no way out except by supplicating their Lord and asking Him for water (rain).

People may supplicate Allah in various ways. For instance, people may supplicate Allah in Prayer, whether in congregation or alone. They may also supplicate Him by invoking Him during the sermon of the Jumu’ah (Friday) Prayer, in which the imam may invoke Allah, and Muslims say, “Ameen”.

Furthermore, it may be by invoking Allah after performing prayers, or by supplicating Him in seclusions with neither prayer nor sermon. All such acts are related about the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace).

The legal ruling concerning Salat al-Istisqa’

The Prayer for Rain is regarded as a stressed Sunnah. There are many hadiths in support of this practice. ‘Abdullah Ibn Zayd (may Allah be pleased with him) said:

“The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) went out to invoke Allah for rain. He faced the qiblah invoking Allah. Then he traversed his cloak and performed two rak’ahs and recited the Quran aloud in them” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

How to perform Salat al-Istisqa’?

The Prayer for Rain is similar to that of the Feast concerning its relevant rulings and the place where it is performed. That is, it is viewed desirable to perform it in the place where the Feast (‘id) Prayer is performed; outside the mosque.

Moreover, its rulings and practices are the same as those of the Feast Prayer.  Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated:

“The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) performed two rak’ahs as he does in the Feast (Prayer).

At-Tirmidhi says that this is a hasan (good) and sahih (authentic) hadith, and AI Hakim and others view it as a sahih (authentic) hadith, as well.

The one performing the Prayer for Rain is to recite the Sura of Al-A’la (the Most High) in the first rak’ah, and the Sura of Al-Ghashiyah (the Overwhelming Event) in the second one.

People are to perform it in a vast spacious place, away from the place of residence, as the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) did not perform it except in the desert.

This is because performing it in such a place is a means of showing much need to Allah, Exalted be He.

Recommended acts before performing Salat al-Istisqa’

When the imam wants to proceed to perform the Prayer for Rain, he should start with reminding people of what may soften their hearts by mentioning Allah’s reward and punishment.

They should also be commanded to turn to Allah in repentance and return rights to whom they are due. This is because sins are amongst the main reasons that cause rain and blessings to be withheld.

On the other side, repentance and asking Allah for forgiveness are reasons for Allah’s answering of supplication. Allah, Exalted be He, says:

“And if only the people of the cities had believed and feared Allah, We would have opened [i.e. bestowed] upon them blessings from the heaven and the earth; but they denied [the messengers], so We seized them for what they were earning” (Quran: Al-A’raf:96)

Furthermore, the imam should command people to give charity to the poor and needy, as this is regarded as a cause for sending Allah’s mercy.

After that, he is to set for them a certain day, at which they are to come out and be prepared for such an honorable occasion, and according to that which best suits it as an act of the Sunnah.

At that date, people are to go out to the place of prayer showing humbleness, submissiveness and neediness of Allah, Exalted be He, as Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said:

“Allah’s Messenger (Allah bless him and grant him peace) went out to perform the Prayer for Rain showing humility humbleness, and submissiveness and supplicating (Allah).” (At-Tirmidhi said that this is a hasan, sahih (good, authentic) hadith.)

No Muslim should stay behind (from going out) while able, even boys and women, whose presence does not cause temptation, are to go out to perform it.

The legal rulings concerning the sermon

Then, the imam is to lead people performing two rak’ahs, as mentioned before. After doing so, he is to deliver one sermon. However, some scholars view that the imam is to deliver two sermons. Both opinions are permissible, but the soundest opinion is to deliver one sermon, according to the most preponderant legal proof.

In most cases, the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) delivered the sermon after performing the Prayer for Rain, and Muslims acted according to this. However, it is related that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) delivered the sermon before performing the prayer. This is the view of some scholars, but the first view (delivering the sermon after performing prayer) is more preponderant; and Allah knows best.

In the sermon of asking for rain, the imam should ask for Allah’s forgiveness as well as recite the verses that command asking for forgiveness, in abundance, as this is considered a cause for sending rain.

Etiquette of Supplication

Moreover, the imam should supplicate Allah, Exalted be He, with much invocation, asking for rain. When supplicating Allah, the imam should raise his hands, as the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) used to raise his hands when invoking Allah in the Prayer for Rain, so much that the whiteness of his armpits became visible.

The imam should also confer blessings upon the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace), as this is a cause for (Allah) answering his supplication. He may invoke Allah with the supplication related about the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) in such situations, as a means of following him. In this regard, Allah, Exalted be He, says:

“There has certainty been for you in the Messenger of Allah an Excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day…” (Quran: AI-Ahzab: 21)

It is viewed as an act of the Sunnah (Prophetic Tradition) to face the qiblah (direction of prayer) at the end of supplication, and to traverse one’s clothes, as related in the Two Sahihs that the Prophet turned his back toward the people and faced the qiblah asking Allah (for rain). Then he traversed his cloak.

The wisdom behind this – Allah knows best – is that it is like a good omen that the present hard condition may turn into prosperity and the sending of rain. People should also follow the imam and traverse their clothes, as Imam Ahmad related,

“..the people followed him (the Prophet) and traversed their clothes”

This would be until Allah sends down rain; otherwise, Muslims should repeat asking for rain, as long as there is a need for that.

Recommended supplications to make when it rains

It is considered an act of the Sunnah (Prophetic Tradition) that when rain starts to fall, one is to stand and receive some of it and say:

“O Allah! Let it be a strong fruitful rain,” and say, “The rain is due to the Favor and Mercy of Allah.”

However, when rain falls heavily and there is fear that it might cause harm, one should say as the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) used to say:

“O Allah! (Let the rain be) around us, not on us. O Allah! (Let the rain be) on the plateaus, on the mountains, on the hills, on the hillocks, in the valleys, and on the places where trees grow.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)


The article is an excerpt from the author’s book “A Summary of Islamic Jurisprudence” with some modifications.

Dr. Salih Al-Fawzan is a Professor of Islamic Jurisprudence, Member of the Board of Senior Ulema & Member of the Permanent Committee for Fatwa and Research.

Soucre Link
Categories
Acts of Worship New Muslims

Wiping over Footwear or Socks

By Editorial Staff

Ablution is one of the prerequisites of performing prayer. Although washing both feet to the ankles is compulsory, there is a substitute for this which is wiping over socks.

An important term to define here is Khuff which is mentioned in almost all the hadiths that discuss this matter. Scholars in turn use the term in their books.

Khuff means a covering (often of leather and the like) for the foot that usually reaches above the ankle. Moreover, this article will also discuss the legal rulings for wiping over boots, shoes, socks, sandals and slippers.

Al-Hasan Al-Basri said, “Seventy Companions of Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) told me that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) wiped over his khuffs.”

The Legal Ruling on Wiping over Khuffs (Leather Socks)

All Sunni scholars of Islam agree that wiping over Khuffs (leather socks or boots) is permissible. There are many hadiths that support this legal opinion. Hummam reported:

Jarir urinated, then performed ablution and wiped over the khuffs. It was said to him: Do you do like this? He said: Yes, I saw that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) urinated, then performed ablution and then wiped over his khuffs.

A’mash said: Ibrahim had observed that this hadith was a surprise for them (the people) because Jarir had embraced Islam after the revelation of Surat al-Ma’ida. (Muslim)

In Surat Al-Ma’idah (Surah 5), Verse 6 demonstrates the obligatory acts of ablution. The fact that Jarir (Allah be pleased with him) accepted Islam after the revelation of such verse means the above mentioned legal ruling is effective. If such incident had occurred before the revelation of Surat al-Ma’idah, the ruling would have been abrogated.

“I have no doubt about the permissibility of wiping over khuffs because (I know) 40 hadiths concerning it”, Imam Ahmad said. In addition, Al-Hasan Al-Basri said, “Seventy Companions of Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) told me that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) wiped over his khuffs.”

In addition, Sunni scholars have reached a consensus that wiping over khuffs is permissible whether the person is on a journey or at the place of residence and whether there is a need to do so or not.

Prerequisites for Wiping over Khuffs and the Like

1. You must wear them while you are in a state of purification through ablution or ritual bath.

Then, when you need to perform ablution after wearing khuffs, you do not need to wash your feet again. Narrated `Urwa bin Al-Mughira:

My father said, “Once I was in the company of the Prophet (ﷺ) on a journey and I dashed to take off his Khuffs (socks made from thick fabric or leather). He ordered me to leave them as he had put them after performing ablution. So he passed wet hands over them. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

2. The Khuffs must reach above the ankle to cover the feet and the lower part of the leg

According to this condition, you can wipe over boots, leather socks. However, you may not wipe over sandals, slippers and shoes that do not cover the ankle. The hadiths that allow a person to wipe over shoes are not authentic.

As for socks, there are two different opinions concerning the permissibility to wipe over them. On the one hand, Abu Hanifa, Malik and Al-Shafi’i are of the opinion that it is not allowed to wipe over socks. In fact, all the hadiths or reports which denote that Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) wiped over socks are not authentic.

On the other hand, it is allowed to wipe over socks according to Imam Ahmad. Here, there are two things used by Imam Ahmad and other scholars who uphold this opinion to support it. The first thing is that a good number of the companions are reported to have wiped over socks. The second thing is the analogy that is there between socks and khuffs. However, according to the majority of the scholars, one may not wipe over light socks.

3. The khuffs must be made from legally pure material

One may not wipe over khuffs or boots that are made from pig’s leather for example.

4. Wiping over khuffs must take place within the legally prescribed period.

A person who is at the place of residence may wipe over khuffs for a day and a night i.e. 24 hours. However, a traveller may wipe over khuffs for three days and nights. Narrated ‘Ali (Allah be pleased with him):

The Prophet (ﷺ) fixed the period of wiping over the leather socks for three days and nights for a traveller and one day and a night for the resident person in a town. (Muslim)

How to Wipe over Khuffs?

It is permissible to only pass your wet hands over the apparent or upper part of the khuff. You may not wipe over the bottom part which cover the sole of your feet or the back of your leg.

Things Which Nullify Wiping over Khuffs

1. Major ritual impurity

Major ritual impurity is a state which requires a person to take a ritual bath. In this case one must take off one’s khuffs. Narrated Safwan bin ‘Assal (Allah be pleased with him):

When we were on a journey, the Prophet (ﷺ) used to command us to wear our Khuffs (leather socks) for three days and three nights, whether we had to answer the call of nature or slept. However, in case of ejaculation or sexual impurity, he commanded us to remove the leather socks. [Reported by An-Nasa’i and At-Tirmidhi, version is of the latter. With them Ibn Khuzaima graded it Sahih (sound)].

2. The expiration of the prescribed period

A person at the place of residence may not wipe over khuffs for more than 24 hours. Likewise, a traveller must take off his or her khuffs after three days and nights. After the expiration of such period, a person can take off khuffs, perform ablution and wash his or her feet before wearing them again.

3. Taking off the khuffs

Taking off the Khuffs nullifies wiping over them. However, does that nullify ablution? The preferred opinion is that it does not nullify ablution.

 

Soucre Link