The Eclipse between the people of faith and the people of negligence

What the people whose concern is only for this world are saying about the eclipse

A scientific researcher has said: “The eclipse is a natural phenomenon which should be regarded without alarm.”

With regard to what they are actually doing, we have heard the following news:

  1. Medically-approved glasses will be distributed to people so that they can enjoy these few moments.
  2. One country has imported 50,000 pairs of special glasses to be used for watching the eclipse this coming Wednesday.
  3. People will gather at specialized telescopes so that they will have the opportunity to see the eclipse through advanced scientific means.
  4. British Airways has organized two Concorde flights to observe the eclipse this coming Wednesday. The flights will depart from Heathrow airport and head west for half the distance, then they will come back, so that the two hundred passengers will be able to see the eclipse from an altitude of 58,000 feet, travelling at twice the speed of sound. All the tickets for both flights sold out within a short period of time.
  5. In some countries people have been advised to stay in their houses and not to go out in the streets at all.

This is what the people of negligence say, but what about the people of faith? Al-Bukhaari (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in his Saheeh: Baab Al-Salaah fi Kusoof al-Shams (Chapter on prayer when the sun is eclipsed):

From Abu Bakrah who said: “We were with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and the sun was eclipsed. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) stood up, dragging his cloak, and went into the mosque. We went in too and he led us in praying two rak’ahs, until the sun was uncovered again. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘The sun and moon are not eclipsed for the death of anyone [or for the life of anyone], [they are two of the signs of Allaah]. So if you see that, [then get up and pray] and make du’aa’ until what happened to you is over.’” (982). Continue reading

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Removing hair between the eyebrows

What is the Islamic ruling concerning the removal of hair from between the eyebrows?

Praise be to Allaah.

It is permitted to remove this hair, because it is not part of the eyebrows. Continue reading

There is no connection between fasting and cutting one’s nails or shaving one’s pubic hairs

Is there any truth that one should not cut their nails or shave the pubic hairs while fasting?

Praise be to Allaah.

These actions are not things that are obligatory for the fasting person in particular, but they are not things that go against fasting either. Rather the fasting person refrains from eating, drinking and having intercourse, which are things that invalidate the fast. He should also keep away from sins and bad things, such as backbiting and spreading slander, which reduce the reward for fasting. But with regard to cutting the nails and shaving the pubic hair, these are matters that pertain to the fitrah (natural state of man), which the Lawgiver said should not be left for more than forty days. They have nothing to do with the soundness of one’s fast.

And Allaah knows best. Continue reading

She said to her husband: The limit of Allah is between me and you

During Ramadan there was an argument between me and my husband, and I said to him: The limit of Allah is between us, but I did not specify anything in particular. What is the expiation for that? Is it regarded as tahreem (making intimacy haraam) between husband and wife?.

Praise be to Allaah.

Talaaq and zihaar (kinds of divorce) are the hands of the husband, not the wife. But if the wife declares her husband to be haraam for her, that is an oath (yameen), so if the oath is broken she has to offer expiation for breaking an oath. The oath is broken if he has intercourse with her.

This has been discussed previously in the answer to question no. 110010

Based on that, if what you meant when you said, The limit of Allah is between us, was to make your husband haraam for you, then when the oath was broken you have to offer expiation for breaking an oath, which is to free a slave or to feed ten poor persons or to clothe them. The one who is not able to do any of these has to fast for three days.

But if you did not intend to make your husband haraam for you, then you do not have to do anything.

And Allah knows best. Continue reading

Prayer between Maghrib and ‘Isha’

Is it true that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) prayed six rak’ahs in the Sunnah prayer of Maghrib?.

Praise be to Allaah.

The regular Sunnah prayer of Maghrib is two rak’ahs only. See the answer to question no. 1048.

But there is a report concerning the virtue of praying six rak’ahs after Maghrib. Al-Tirmidhi (435) and Ibn Majaah (1167) narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever prays six rak’ahs after Maghrib and does not say anything bad in between them, will have a reward equal to the worship of twelve years.”

Al-Tirmidhi said: This hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah is a ghareeb hadeeth which we know only from the hadeeth of Zayd ibn al-Hubaab from ‘Umar ibn Abi Khath’am. I heard Muhammad ibn Ismaa’eel [al-Bukhaari] say: ‘Umar ibn ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Abi Khath’am is munkar al-hadeeth (i.e., his hadeeth is to be rejected), and he classed it as da’eef jiddan (very weak).

Al-Albaani (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Da’eef al-Tirmidhi: It is da’eef jiddan (very weak).

There are other ahaadeeth which encourage praying between Maghrib and ‘Isha’, but they are all weak.

See: Da’eef al-Targheeb wa’l-Tarheeb (332, 333, 334, 335).

But it is proven that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did pray between Maghrib and ‘Isha’.

Ahmad (22926) narrated that Hudhayfah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I came to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and prayed Maghrib with him. When he had finished the prayer, he stood and prayed, and he kept praying until he prayed ‘Isha’. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel (470).

It is also proven from some of the Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) that they used to pray between Maghrib and ‘Isha’. Abu Dawood (1321) narrated that Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) said, concerning the verse “Their sides forsake their beds, to invoke their Lord in fear and hope, and they spend (in charity in Allaah’s Cause) out of what We have bestowed on them” [al-Sajdah 32:16]: They used to wake up [according to another report: pray naafil] between Maghrib and ‘Isha’. Al-Hasan used to say: Qiyaam al-layl. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.

Ibn Mardawayh narrated in his Tafseer that Anas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said concerning this verse: They would pray between Maghrib and ‘Isha’. Al-‘Iraqi said: Its isnaad is jayyid. Quoted from ‘Awn al-Ma’bood.

Al-Shawkaani (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Nayl al-Awtaar (3/68): The verses and ahaadeeth quoted concerning this matter indicate that it is prescribed to pray a great deal between Maghrib and ‘Isha’. Although most of the ahaadeeth are da’eef (weak), they carry some weight when taken all together, especially with regard to virtuous actions. Al-‘Iraqi said: Among the Sahaabah who used to pray between Maghrib and ‘Isha’ were ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood, ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr, Salmaan al-Faarisi, Ibn ‘Umar, Anas ibn Maalik and some of the Ansaar. Among the Taabi’een were al-Aswad ibn Yazeed, Abu ‘Uthmaan al-Nahdi, Ibn Abi Maleekah, Sa’eed ibn Jubayr, Muhammad ibn al-Munkadir, Abu Haatim, ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Sakhbarah, ‘Ali ibn al-Husayn, Abu ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Habali, Shurayh al-Qaadi, ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Maghfal and others. Among the imams there was Sufyaan al-Thawri. End quote.

Based on this, it is mustahabb to pray between Maghrib and ‘Isha, without specifying a set number of rak’ahs.

And Allaah knows best. Continue reading

Speaking during the interval when the imaam falls silent between the two khutbahs

Is it permissible to speak during the interval when the imaam falls silent between the two khutbahs at Jumu’ah (Friday) prayer? Is it permissible to make a gesture by pointing to one’s lips with one’s forefinger in order to remind a person that he should not speak during the khutbah?

Praise be to Allaah.

It is permissible to speak during the interval when the imaam falls silent between the two khutbahs, if there is a need to do so. It is OK to gesture to one who speaks whilst the imaam is preaching, to tell him to be quiet, just as it is also permissible to gesture during the prayer if there is a need to do so. May Allaah help us all.  Continue reading

Commuting between cities of work and residence

As salaamualaikum wa rahmatullilahi wabarkaatahu Sheikh:
I work in a different city than where my family is. My work is 250 kilometers from my family (parents, and brothers). I work from Monday to Friday and return to my family for Saturday and Sunday. I have an apartment where I work. My question is can I shorten my salaat in my working city or are both cities considered to be my home?
Jazakallahu khariran
wa salaamualaikum

Your home town, the one where your family lives, is your home. The town which you intend to stay in for more than four days is also considered a place of residence, according to the opinion of the majority of scholars. Therefore you are not allowed to enjoy the concessions of the traveler (i.e. shortening and combining the prayers) in either place. However, you can shorten and combine prayers while traveling in between the two places.

Refer to questions under Salaat Ul-Musaafir (Prayer of the Traveler). Continue reading

The difference between joining and shortening prayers

What is the difference between joining and shortening prayers?.

Praise be to Allaah.There are many differences between joining and shortening prayers, including the following: 

1.     Definition

The meaning of shortening prayers is that the four-rak’ah prayers become two rak’ahs when travelling.

As for joining prayers, it means that the worshipper joins two prayers, Zuhr and ‘Asr, or Maghrib and ‘Isha’, at the time of the earlier or later of the two prayers.

2.     Shar’i ruling

The scholars are unanimously agreed that shortening the prayers is better for the traveller than offering them in full, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) shortened prayers during all his journeys, and there is no saheeh report that he offered the prayers in full whilst travelling.

Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I accompanied the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and he did not do more than two rak’ahs whilst travelling, and the same applies to Abu Bakr, ‘Umar and ‘Uthmaan (may Allaah be pleased with them). Narrated by al-Bukhaari (1102).

The Hanafis are of the view that it is obligatory for the traveller to shorten his prayers, but the correct view is that of the majority, that shortening the prayers is sunnah mu’akkadah (a confirmed Sunnah), and that it is better than offering the prayers in full.

See: al-Ijmaa’ by Ibn al-Mundhir (27); al-Mughni (1/382); al-Mawsoo’ah al-Fiqhiyyah (27/274).

As for joining prayers, the scholars are not agreed on its permissibility except in the case of the pilgrim in ‘Arafah and Muzdalifah. Some scholars said that it is not permissible to join prayers anywhere except in these two places.

The correct view is that of the majority of scholars, which is that it is permissible to join prayers if there is an excuse for doing so, because it is proven that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did that in places other than ‘Arafah and Muzdalifah.

3.     Reasons which make it permissible to join or shorten prayers

The reasons which make it permissible to join prayers are broader than those which make it permissible to shorten them. Joining prayers is permissible for every traveller, and for the non-traveller if it is too difficult for him to offer every prayer on time, such as one who is sick, or if there is rain, or he is busy with some work that he cannot delay in order to pray, such as a student taking an exam or a doctor who is doing surgery and so on.

With regard to shortening prayers, that is only permissible when travelling.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (22/293):

The reason for shortening prayers is travelling only, and it is not permissible in situations other than travelling. As for joining prayers, the reason for it is need and excuses, so if a person needs to he may join both shortened and full-length prayers whilst travelling, and he may join prayers when it is raining and so on, or because of sickness and the like, and for other reasons, because the purpose behind it is to spare the ummah hardship. End quote.

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said in al-Liqa’ al-Shahri (60/11):

Joining prayers is broader in scope than shortening them, i.e., the reasons for doing so are more numerous.

And Allaah knows best. Continue reading

What should be said in the two prostrations of forgetfulness and in between them?

What should we say in the two prostrations of forgetfulness and in between them? Should we say the same as we say in the obligatory prayer?.

Praise be to Allaah.

There is no specific dhikr to be said in the two prostrations of forgetfulness as far as we know. Based on this, they come under the same ruling as prostration in prayer, and the same should be said as in the prostration in prayer, such as “Subhaan Rabbiy al-a’la (Glory be to my Lord Most High) and du’aa’, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The closest a person can be to his Lord is when he is prostrating, so say a great deal of du’aa’ (at that time).” Narrated by Muslim, 482.

See also question no. 7886 and 39677.

The same should be said between the two prostrations as is said between the two prostrations in prayer, namely “Rabbiy ighfir li (Lord forgive me).

See question no. 13340.

Al-Nawawi said in al-Majmoo’ (4/72):

The prostration of forgetfulness is two prostrations, sitting in between them. It is Sunnah to sit muftarishan (with the left foot lying along the ground and sitting on it) in between them, and to sit mutawarrikan (with the left upper thigh on the ground and both feet protruding from one (i.e., the right) side) after them until one says the salaam. The way in which the prostrations are done and the dhikr to be said in them is the same as in the prayer. And Allaah knows best. End quote.

It says in al-Sharh al-Kabeer (4/96):

He should say in the prostration of forgetfulness the same as he says in the prostration of prayer, by analogy with it. End quote.

It says in Asna al-Mataalib (1/195):

The prostration of forgetfulness is two prostrations… the way in which they are done is the same as in prayer. He should sit muftarishan between them, and recite the same dhikr as in the prostration during the prayer. End quote.

It says in Mughni al-Muhtaaj (1/439):

The way in which it is done is the same as in prayer, both obligatory and naafil prayers, such as putting the forehead on the ground and being at ease (in the posture)… and he should say the same dhikr as in the prostration of prayer.

Al-Adhra’i said: And they did not say anything about the dhikr to be said in between them. It seems that it is the same as the dhikr between the two prostrations of the prayer. End quote.

It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah (6/443):

When doing the prostration of forgetfulness and prostrations required when reading Qur’aan, he should say the same as he says when prostrating during the prayer: “Subhaan Rabbiy al-a’la (Glory be to my Lord Most High)”. What is required is to say it once, but the least level of perfection is to say it three times. It is mustahabb to say du’aa’ whilst prostrating, saying whatever du’aa’s prescribed in sharee’ah one can. End quote.

Some of the scholars stated that it is mustahabb to say in these prostrations: “Subhaana man laa yanaamu wa la yas-hu (Glory be to the One Who does not sleep or forget).”

Al-Haafiz ibn Hajar said in al-Talkhees (2/12): I could not find any basis for this.” End quote. Continue reading

Argument over whether to keep the partition between men and women in the mosque

In one of the mosques there is a partition between men and women. A dispute has arisen as to how important this partition is. Some think that there is no need for it, because at the time of the Messenger  (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) there was no partition; others insist on having it. The resulting argument may lead those who think there should be no partition to stop praying in the mosque, despite the fact that removing the partition could lead to some degree of mixing or looking at the opposite sex when leaving the mosque, because some of the men are not strongly committed in their religion. Should we insist on keeping the partition even though some people may stop praying in the mosque, or should we remove it although this may lead to people looking at the opposite sex?

Praise be to Allaah.

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen answered this question as follows:

The partition should stay. The fact that there was no partition at the time of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was either because there was no need for it or because there was a reason why they could not have a partition. With regard to the former, the Sahaabah, may Allaah be pleased with them, had such strong faith in Allaah that they would not look at women; with regard to the latter, the financial situation of the Sahaabah, as we know, especially before the conquests, was one of hardship, and they could not afford to put a partition between themselves and the women. Having understood this, we should next look at which is further removed from fitnah, having a partition or not having it? Everyone will agree that having the partition is less likely to cause fitnah. If that is the case, then whatever is less likely to cause fitnah is what should be done. If you say, “If we insist on keeping it, those who want to remove it will stay away from the mosque,” our response is that if they stay away, they are doing wrong. They have no excuse for failing to pray in jamaa’ah because of this partition being there. Having the partition there is not a sin such that they could say, “We are not coming to be witnesses to sin.” If they stay away, they are committing sin by failing to attend prayers in congregation. Continue reading