Ramzan Kareem

Since Allah I created man, Satan has vowed to lead him astray. Thus
we have the enemy who has misled millions of people and who will
continue to do so at every opportunity.
Man has within himself two forces colliding all the time; the force of
good and the force of evil. Man’s behaviour depends upon which force
has the upper hand. In the month of Ramadhan, Allah I blesses us
with all the means to enable the force of good to supercede the evil
forces. One must therefore value every moment of this month to
spiritually elevate oneself.
Fasting helps us judge our strength in controlling our lust, greed and
passion. It teaches us self-discipline so that we gain control over the
factors which Satan uses as his tools against Man. Fasting is a weapon
and just as any other weapon is useless, unless the user knows how to
use it, same applies to Fasting. This book has been written with the aim
of teaching  Muslims how they can use the weapon of Fasting in a
manner that is correct and beneficial in their war against Satan, thereby
attaining the pleasure of Allah I.
Fasting has been ordained during Ramadhan (the 9th lunar month).
The name of this month is derived from many sources. It is worth
mentioning one which is recorded in a Hadith wherein it is related
from Rasulullah    r that  “Most certainly it (Ramadhan) burns ones
Allah  I has blessed us with the month of  Ramadhan wherein the
rebellious Shayatin are chained and one abstains from food and drink
which grants one the maximum opportunity to discipline and control
the Nafs.
Due to the mercy of Allah  I in  Ramadhan, the mosques are full,
charity increases, ties of brotherhood strengthen, angers and tempers
subside, and an atmosphere of peace prevails. Let us monitor the
gradual regression after  Eid salaah so that we may stop it in time.
Psychologists agree that habits which one wishes to remove, will
decrease when monitored consciously. When the dazzling temporal
world envelops us, we lose concern for the Akhirah and that which
took thirty days to achieve can be lost in minutes. We should therefore
firmly resolve to be steadfast on the good habits acquired during this
holy month.
“O Muslims’ fasting is prescribed for you just as it was
prescribed for those before you, that you may become fearful.”
Al Baqarah 183
Before proceeding with the masa’il (rules) related to Ramadhan, it is
best to narrate some of the  fadha’il  (excellences and virtues) of
Knowledge of the virtues will develop the understanding of the value
and importance of this most blessed month, creating enthusiasm and
eagerness, which in turn will result, Insha-Allah, in proper fulfillment of
the laws, etiquette and demands of Ramadhan.
 Abu Saeed Khudri t narrates that Rasulullah  r  said :
“The Doors of the Heavens are opened up on the first night of
Ramadhan.   Not a single door (among the doors of Heaven) is then
closed until the last night of Ramadhan.
For every salaah performed (this refers to Tarawih salaah) during the
nights of Ramadhan, Allah I records one and a half thousand good
deeds for every Sajdah (of that salaah).   In addition, for the fasting
person Allah I creates in Jannah a palace of red Ya’qut (a precious
stone of Jannah).   This palace will have seven thousand entrances (so
huge will be the entrances) in each entrance will be a mansion of gold
adorned with red Ya’qut.
When a Muslim fasts the first day of Ramadhan, Allah I forgives all his
sins committed from the first day of the previous Ramadhan.   Daily
(during Ramadhan) from the time of Fajr salaah until sunset, seventy
thousand Mala’ikah (Angels) supplicate for their forgiveness.
In return for every Sajdah which the fasting person makes of any salaah,
whether during the day or night, they will obtain (such a wonderful)
massive tree that a horseman will take five hundred years to pass under
its shade.”
O people there comes upon you a great month, a most blessed month,
in which lies a night greater in reward than one thousand months.   
Allah I has made compulsory fasting in this month and has decreed
wakefulness at night (Tarawih salaah) sunnah.
Whosoever tries drawing nearer to Allah I by performing any Nafl
(optional) deed in this month, for him shall be such a reward, as if he
had performed a Fardh (compulsory) deed any other time of the year.  
Moreover, whomsoever performs a Fardh, for him shall be the reward
of seventy Faraidh, in any other time of the year.
This is indeed the month of patience, and the reward for true patience
is Jannah; it is the month of sympathy with one’s fellow people; it is the
month wherein a true believer’s rizq (provision) is increased.
Those who want to please their Lord,   should in great quantity recite
the  Kalimah Tayyibah:  ‘LA ILAHA ILLALLAH’, and make plenty
‘ISTIGHFAR’ (beg Allah’s I forgiveness).  As for those, without which
you cannot make do, you should beg Allah I for entry into Jannah and
seek refuge with Him from the fire of Jahannam.
When the month of Ramadhan begins, the doors of Jannah are opened
and the doors of Jahannam are closed and the Shayatin are chained up.
Fasting helps us to judge our strength in controlling our lust, greed and
passion. It teaches us self discipline so that we gain control over the
factors which  Satan uses as his tools against mankind. Fasting is a
weapon and just as any other weapon is useless, unless the user knows
how to use it, the same is with fasting. This book has been written with
the aim of teaching Muslims how they can use the weapon of Fasting in
a manner that is correct and beneficial in their war against  Satan,
thereby attaining the pleasure of Allah I.
Even scientists agree that mankind require a rest period due to ‘mental
fatigue’. Allah I, The All Knowing, The Wise, Our Creator, created us
and knows that we are bodily weak, and spiritually feeble, in need of
occasions to boost and recharge our weak Iman so that we may adhere
to the commands of Allah I in the way shown to us by our beloved
Prophet Rasulullah  r.
Verily, Allah I and His angels send mercy upon those who eat Suhur.  
Eat Suhur because in Suhur there is barakah
The fish in the sea seek forgiveness for those fasting until they break
their fast.   Allah I decorates Jannah every day and then says,   “The
time is near when my pious servants shall cast aside the great trials and
come to me.” During each day and night of Ramadhan, Allah I sets
free a great number of souls from hell.  In addition, for every Muslim,
during each day and night, at least one du’a is certainly accepted.
Insha Allah
Saum is a shield, as long as the fasting person does not tear it up.
Note:  Fasting is a protection from  Shaytan and from Allah’s  I
punishment in the Hereafter. However, one who indulges in sins;
such as lying, backbiting etc., whilst fasting; these sins then become
the cause of the fast becoming wasted. Fasting is a shield and a
powerful fortress.  All good deeds are for the one who renders them,
but fasting is exclusively for Allah I. I swear by that being in whose
possession is the life of Muhammad r! The odour of the mouth of a
fasting person is sweeter to Allah  I than the fragrance of musk.
Fasting is exclusively for Allah I, the reward of it (being limitless) no
one knows besides Allah I.                                                  Mishkat
Whosoever gives something to a fasting person in order to break the
fast, for them there shall be forgiveness for their sins and emancipation
from the fire of Jahannam, and for him (the one who gives) shall be the
same reward as for them (whom they fed), without that persons (the
one who was fed) reward being diminished in the least. Whoever gave
a person who fasted water to drink, Allah I shall give them a drink
from His fountain on the day of Judgement, where after they shall
never again feel thirsty until they enter  Jannah. The fasting person
experiences two occasions of delight; at the time of Iftar and at the
time they meet their Rabb.
Prayer made by a fasting person at the time of breaking fast is
Whoever stands in prayer and worship in the nights of Ramadhan, with
Iman and with sincere hope of gaining reward, all his previous sins will
be forgiven. Allah I has ordained fasting in Ramadhan compulsory,
and I have decreed (by the command of Allah I) wakefulness at night
(tarawih, etc.) Sunnah. Whomsoever, in the state of Iman and with hope
of gaining reward, fasts in Ramadhan and stays awake at night emerges
from sin, purified as the day when their mother gave birth to them.
For every salaah performed during the nights of Ramadhan, Allah I
records one and a half thousand good deeds for every Sajdah.
Whoever stands in prayer in the night of power with Iman and with
sincere hope of gaining reward all his previous sins are forgiven.  Look
for the night of power amongst the odd numbered nights of the last ten
days of Ramadhan.
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One aim of this book is to briefly guide those who wish to learn and also
to answer common queries. It is also hoped that the misrepresentations
and incorrect beliefs regarding this beautiful gift of fasting from Allah I
are cleared.
1.  The usual principle on which the determination of the Islamic months
are based, has always been the sighting of the moon. (Ru’ya)
2.  It is possible to prepare correct timetables showing sunset, Sunrise,
Zawaal and salaah times, but it is not possible to prepare timetables
for the sighting of the moon. The timetable is unable to provide the
human act of sighting the moon essential for the commencement
of the Islamic month.
3.  The ‘Birth’ of the moon or assumed feasibility of sighting the moon
are not the principles for determining the Islamic months.
4.  If the moon is not sighted due to poor weather conditions,
Rasulullah   r, commanded that the month be completed with
thirty days. This has been the practice  of the Ummah for the past
years since Rasulullah  r.
O Allah! Let the crescent moon appear over us
with security and Iman; with peace and Islam;
and with ability for us to practice
 such actions which You love.  
(O’ Moon!) My Creator and Your Creator is Allah.
1. It is incumbent on Muslims to search for the moon of Ramadhan on
the end of the 29th of Sha’ban.
2. The testimony of a  fasiq (flagrant transgressor) regarding the
sighting of the moon is not acceptable.
3. The testimony of a person (whose personal condition is not
known) is acceptable according to Imam Abu Hanifah (R.A.).
4. If someone sees the moon of  Ramadhan alone, but for some
reason his testimony was rejected, he will have to fast on that day.
If he does not, he will have to observe Qadha of the fast. However,
there is no Kaffarah on him in this case, if he completes thirty days
for Ramadhan and the moon for Eid was  not sighted, he will have
to continue fasting with the people even if it means that he fasts for
thirty one days.
5. The moon for  Sha’ban was sighted. The month of Rajab was
completed with thirty days and  Ramadhan was commenced
without the moon of Ramadhan being sighted. At the end of 28th
day of Ramadhan the moon or Shawwal was sighted. In this case
the people have to make Qadha of one fast.
6. The moon for Sha’ban was not sighted.  However, the  month  was
completed with thirty days and  Ramadhan was commenced
without the moon of Ramadhan being sighted so Sha`ban was also
30 days.  At the end of the 28th day of fasting the moon for Shawwal
was sighted. In this case two fasts have to be made Qadha.
7. One should not take offence if one’s report of sighting of the moon
is not accepted by the scholars. Non-acceptance of information
regarding the sighting of the moon is not always because of the
reporters being a fasiq or unreliable. At times the sighting of a single
person or even of a few persons is not acceptable to the Shariah.
Thus, rejection of testimony is based on Shari grounds.
8. If the sky is not clear and thirty days of Ramadhan have passed then
in declaring Eid-ul-Fitr there is no difference of opinion even if one
person testified for the commencement of Ramadhan.
9. There is no validity in seeing the moon in the day, whether it be
before or after Zawaal the moon that will be regarded as the moon
of the coming night can only be seen at night.
1. Fasting in the month of Ramadhan is one of the five pillars of Islam.
2. Fasting in the month of Ramadhan is FARDH upon every Muslim,
male and female who is sane and mature.
3. Almighty Allah I has promised great reward for those that  fast,
whilst severe punishment for those that do NOT fast in the month
of Ramadhan.
4. Fasting has many physical, moral and social benefits. However,
Allah I has made fasting compulsory so that we become pious,
Allah I fearing and Allah I conscious.
5. Fasting in ISLAM means to stay away from EATING, DRINKING
and COHABITATION (sex) from  Subhus Sadiq (true dawn) to
sunset with a Niyyah (intention) of Sawm (fasting).
1. The Niyyah of fasting is NECESSARY.  If a person stays away from all
those things that invalidate one’s fast without a Niyyah, the fast will
NOT be valid.
2. It is not necessary to express the Niyyah verbally as Niyyah means
to intend. Thus, the intention at heart will suffice. However, it is
better to express the Niyyah verbally also.
3. The time for Niyyah lasts upto midday for Fardh Mu’ayyan, Wajib
Mu’ayyan, Sunnah or Mustahab fasts. The hours of a day are from
Subh Sadiq to sunset.
4. The Niyyah for Fardh Ghair Mu’ayyan and Wajib Ghair Mu’ayyan
should be made before Subh Sadiq.
It is Masnun (Sunnah) to partake of Suhur during the last portion of the
night. It is a means of attaining great blessings and Thawab. The Sunnah
will be attained if one partakes of Suhur at any time after midnight. But
it is better and desirable to partake of Suhur in the last portion of the
night. If the Mu’adhdhin has called out the Adhan before its time, it will
not be prohibited to partake of  Suhur till just before  Subh Sadiq
appears. It will suffice if one makes an intention to fast in ones mind
after the Suhur.  Delaying Suhur to such an extent that there is fear of
the appearance of Subh Sadiq, should be avoided. To partake of Suhur
at its correct time and then spend time chewing or smoking  till the last
minute should be avoided.
A person partaking in Suhur during the middle of the night (i.e. before
the time of Suhur) deprives             himself of the complete Thawab of
Suhur through this action.
Rasulullah r is reported to have said: “Verily, Allah and His Malaikah
send mercy upon those who eat Suhur”.
Many Ulama agree that to partake of Suhur is Mustahab and many
people are deprived of this reward because of laziness (i.e. not getting
up from one’s sleep to perform this Sunnah).
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Another Hadith indicates that the difference between our fasting and
that of the Ahlul-Kitab (Jews and Christians) lies in partaking  of Suhur.
The following are blessings of Suhur:
a)  In it, the Sunnah if followed
b)  Through it, we oppose the ways of Ahlul-Kitab, which we are at all
times called upon to do.
c)  It provides strength for Ibadah.
d)   It promotes more sincerity in Ibadah.
e)  It aids in the elimination of bad temper
f)  Suhur is a time when prayers are accepted.
g)  It gives one the opportunity to remember Allah I, make dhikr and
Lift up the hands to him in du`a.
The following intention for the Fast has to be expressed during the night.
“I have the intention to observe tomorrow
a Fast of the month of Ramadhan.”
“O Allah, I keep fast for You, so forgive my future and past sins.”
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Sahl Bin Sa’d t reported that Rasulullah   said:  “People will remain
prosperous as long as they hasten with Iftaar” (i.e. they break their fast
immediately when the time for Iftaar enters).
It is  Sunnah to make  Iftaar (to break one’s fast) immediately after
sunset.   One should not delay in Iftaar.   It is indeed harmful if one
partakes in the  Iftaar meal for so long, that he misses his  Maghrib
salaah.  It is better to break the fast in the Masjid, so that the Maghrib
salaah is not missed.  To perform Maghrib salaah at home, so that one
can indulge in the provisions of Iftaar while missing the blessings of
salaah with Jama’ah, is a shameful act.
“O Allah for You have I fasted, in You do I believe, and on You do I
rely and now I break this fast with food coming from You.”
There are Eight types of Fasts . They are as  follows:
1. FARDH MU-‘AYYAN: Fasting for the whole month of Ramadhan
once a year.
2. FARDH GHAIR MU-‘AYYAN: The duty upon one to keep QADHA
of a fast missed in the month of Ramadhan with or without a valid
3. WAJIB MU-‘AYYAN:   To vow to keep a fast on a specific day or
date for the pleasure of Allah I, upon the fulfilment of some wish
or desire
4. WAJIB GHAIR MU-‘AYYAN:  To vow or pledge to keep a fast
without fixing any day or date, upon the fulfilment of a wish. Those
fasts which are kept for breaking one’s Qasm (oath) also fall under
this category.
5. SUNNAH: Those fasts which Rasulullah   kept and encouraged
others to keep, e.g., fasting on the 9th and 10th of Muharram, and
the 9th of Dhil Hijjah, etc.
6. MUSTAHAB:  All fasts besides  Fardh, wajib  and Sunnah are
Mustahab, eg., fasting on Mondays and Thursdays.
7. MAKRUH:   Fasting ONLY on the 9th or 10th of Muharram or
Fasting ONLY on Saturdays.
8. HARAM:   It is Haram to fast on FIVE days during the year.  They
are Eidul Fitr, Eidul Adhaa and three days after Eidul Adha.
1. To chew rubber, plastic or other inedible items.
2. To taste any article of food or drink and spit it out.  If a woman has a
very ill-tempered husband, it is permissible for her to taste the
food, provided it does not go down her throat.
3. To collect one’s saliva in the mouth and then to swallow it, trying to
quench thirst.
4. To delay a bath that has become Fardh knowingly until  after  Subh
5. To use paste or tooth powder to clean one’s teeth. It is permitted to
use a miswaak of any fresh branch or root.
6. To complain of hunger and thirst.
7. To take excessive water up the nostrils when cleaning the nose.
8. To gargle more than necessary.
9. To quarrel, argue, use filthy or indecent words.
10. To backbite, lie and swear etc. are sinful acts even when one is not
fasting. Therefore they become more serious when fasting.
1. Things that break one’s fast are of two kinds. Some only make
Qadha necessary, whilst others make both  Qadha and  Kaffarah
(a) QADHA: To keep one fast in place of one that breaks, or is
broken unintentionally.
(b) KAFARAH:  To keep SIXTY fasts  continuously .  This is
atonement for fasts broken intentionally.
! However, if a person is unable to keep these 60 fasts, for some valid
reason, eg., continuous sickness, then one has the option of
choosing from one of the following four:
1. Feed sixty poor people to their fill for two meals, or
2. Feed one poor person two meals a day, for sixty days;  or
3. Give 60 poor persons 3.5 lbs. (approx. 1.6 kg.) of wheat or its value
in cash or food;
4. Give to one poor person not less than 3.5 lbs,. of wheat,  rice  or
food grains, etc. or its value in cash for sixty days. (It cannot be
given at once)
1. Anything put by force into the mouth of, and is swallowed by a
fasting person.
2. Water going down the throat whilst gargling, (whilst being
conscious of one’s fast).
3. To vomit a mouthful intentionally or to return vomit down the
4. Swallowing intentionally a pebble, piece of paper or any  item  that
is not used as food or medicine.
5. Swallowing something edible, equal to or bigger than a grain of
gram which was stuck between the teeth. However, if it is first
taken out of the mouth and swallowed, it will break the fast
whether it is smaller or bigger than the size of a grain.
6. Putting oil into the ear.
7. Inhaling snuff into the nostrils.
8. Swallowing the blood from the gums if the colour of the blood is
more than the saliva with which it is mixed.
9. To eat and drink forgetting that one is fasting and thereafterthinking
that the fast is broken, to eat and drink again.
10. To eat and drink after Subha Sadiq or to break the fast beforesunset
due to a cloudy sky or a faulty watch, etc., and then realising one’s
NOTE: Any fast other than the fast of Ramadhan, whether broken
intentionally or with a good valid reason, makes only Qadha wajib.
There is no Kaffarah for breaking any fast besides that of Ramadhan.
1. Eating, drinking, cohabiting or breaking the fast in any other
manner, e.g. smoking, etc., without a valid reason, will make both
Qadha and Kaffarah necessary.
2. Applying Surma into the eye or rubbing oil on the head  and  then,
thinking that the fast is broken, to eat and drink intentionally.
3. To drink any kind of medicine intentionally.
1. To eat or drink something unintentionally.
2. A mosquito, fly or any other object going down the throat
3. Water entering the ears.
4. Dust or dirt going down the throat.
5. Swallowing one’s OWN saliva.
6. Taking an injection.
7. Applying of Surma into the eyes.
8. Taking a bath to keep cool.
9. Rubbing oil onto the body or hair.
10. To vomit unintentionally.
11. Applying perfume. It is NOT permitted to inhale the smoke of
Loban or incense sticks whilst fasting. It is also NOT permitted to
smoke cigarettes or inhale its smoke.
12. Brushing the teeth without tooth paste or powder, e.g. using a
Miswaak, etc.
13. A dream which makes Ghusl necessary does not break the fast.
14. Swallowing something edible less than a grain in size that was stick
between the teeth.
1. Sick people when their health is likely to be affected by fasting.
They should make up the loss, a fast for a fast, when they recover
after Ramadhan.
2. A Musafir, (one who is undertaking a journey of more than 77km
(48 miles) and does NOT intend staying more than 14 days at his
destination). However, it is better for him to fast in Ramadhan than
keep Qadha later, provided the journey is not a tiresome one.
3. If it is feared that hunger or thirst will lead to death, it is permitted
to break one’s fast.
4. It is necessary to keep  Qadha of a  nafl fast which was broken
before completing it.
1. A very old person who does not have the strength to  fast  or  a  very
sickly or diseased person who has no hope of recovering after
Ramadhan, should give fidyah for each fast missed in Ramadhan.
2. The Fidyah for a fast is similar to that of a missed Fardh or wajib
salaah, i.e.
i) To give 3.5lbs = approx. 1.6 kg of wheat
Or ……… 7lbs = approx. 3.2 kg of barley.
ii) Or …….. the equivalent of the above in cash or kind.
If, however, an old or sick person gains strength or recovers after
Ramadhan, he must keep the missed number of fasts and whatever
was given as Fidyah will be a reward for him from Allah I.
No one is allowed to fast for another sick or fit person.
NOTE: Children should be encouraged to fast, but should not be forced
to complete the fast up to sunset if they are unable to bear the hunger or
Once Rasulullah r addressed his followers on the last day of Sha’ban,
on the eve of Ramadhan, and said: “There is a night in this month which
is greater in excellence than a thousand months; Allah I has enjoined
an extra prayer to be offered in the nights of this month. If a person
performs a voluntary good act out of his own free choice during this
month, they will be entitled to receive the reward of an imperative act
performed in the other months”.
In another tradition, he has regarded the Tarawih Prayer as a means of
the forgiveness of sins. He has said: “The one who observes the Tarawih
Prayer at night during Ramadhan with complete faith and devotion only
for the sake of the recompense of the Akhirah (Hereafter), will have all
his previous sins forgiven by Allah I”.
! Tarawih salaah is SUNNAT MU-AKKADAH for both men and women.
! To perform Tarawih with jama’ah is sunnat-kifayah for men.
! If a person performs  Tarawih at home whilst  Tarawih is being
performed at the Masjid, he will  not be sinful. However, if all the
neighbours perform their Tarawih alone at home, then all will be
sinful because of neglecting the jama’ah.
! The time for  Tarawih is from after  Isha salaah to a little before
Subhus-Sadiq. It can be performed  either before or after the Witr
! If one has missed a few rak’ah of  Tarawih and the  Imam has
commenced the Witr, then this Muqtadi may join for the Witr and
complete the remainder of his Tarawih thereafter.
! 20 raka’at with 10 Salaam are masnun, one should have a niyyah
for 2  raka’at of  Tarawih each time. After every 4 raka’at it is
Mustahab to sit a while and take a rest.
! One may remain silent or recite the Qur’an or tasbih in a low voice
or say Nafl salaah separately during the period of rest after every 4
! It is makruh to perform Tarawih sitting if one has the strength of
qiyam (standing).
! While performing Tarawih some people do not join the Jama’ah
from the beginning but join the Imam when he prepares to go into
Ruku’. This is makruh. They should join at the beginning.
! If one does not get the  Jamaa’ah for Fardh of Eisha, he should
perform his Fardh alone and then join the Jamaa’ah for Tarawih.
The worshiper has the option to be quiet during the pause after each 4
raka’at, or recite some Tasbih, or offer a voluntary prayer. The people
of  Makkah, as mentioned above, used to perform a  tawaf  of the
Ka’bah, and the people of Madinah offered 4 raka’at of Nafl. Some
jurists, however, have recommended that the following  Tasbih be
recited in the pause although it does not hold the rank of Sunnah:
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“Glorified is the Owner of the Kingdom of the earth
and the heavens. Glorified is the Possessor of Honour and
Magnificence and Awe. Glorified is the Possessor of Honour
and Magnificence and Awe, and Power and Greatness and
Omnipotence. Glorified is the Sovereign, the Living, Who neither
sleeps nor dies. He is the most praised and the most Holy, our Lord,
the Lord of the Angels and the Spirit (Gabriel). O Allah protect us
from the fire of hell; O Protector, O Protector, O Protector.