You come across a lot of terms like Haram, Halal, Makrooh, Mubah, Mustahab etc. It seems like everything is predefined in our religion and everyone has to follow it, regardless of the conditions they live in. But it’s not exactly like that. Many things are predefined, but only generally. There is always room for exception. You gotta remember that.
Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, “A man saw a dog eating mud from (the severity of) thirst. So, that man took a shoe (and filled it) with water and kept on pouring the water for the dog till it quenched its thirst. So Allah approved of his deed and made him to enter Paradise.” And narrated Hamza bin ‘Abdullah: My father said. “During the lifetime of Allah’s Apostle, the dogs used to urinate, and pass through the mosques (come and go), nevertheless they never used to sprinkle water on it (urine of the dog.)”
It’s an amazing Hadith. Talks about the importance of small deeds. And it also talks about the exception.. Yesterday’s Hadith told us we needed to wash dog-licked seven times to make it pure. And today’s Hadith tells us dog’s urine need not be washed. Contradiction? No, it’s an exception..
At the time of the Prophet (SAW), the floors weren’t made of wood or concrete. It was all mud. And since dogs used to urinate anywhere, it wasn’t felt necessary to wash the place. Sprinkling water was enough. Reason being, mud absorbs the organic liquids and chemical reactions start taking place. The impure loses its impurity. And the mud is clean..
Would that apply to the floors of mosques of today? Of course not. All kinds of impurities will have to be washed away to clean the place. This is how we apply the rule of exception. Hope its understandable. :)