Volume 4, Book 52, Number 93 :
Narrated by Abu Said (radiallaahu `anhu)
I heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) saying, “Indeed, anyone who fasts for one day for Allah’s Pleasure, Allah will keep his face away from the (Hell) fire for (a distance covered by a journey of) seventy years.”
This hadith is new to me. Or at least to my memory. I’ve always considered fasting special because of the special rewards (for example, the well-known narration “fasting is for Me and I will reward for it”). Still my passion and motivation for voluntary fasting rarely, if ever, goes beyond the six of Shawwaal, nine of Dhul Hijjah and two of Muharram. Why do I never make an effort to fast Mondays, Thursdays and the 13th, 14th and 15th of the lunar months, I ask myself. Why not even more than that? Did not Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) fast most of his days? Did not Dawud (`alayhissalaam) fast every other day – the best kind of fasting there is. Why do I feel content with my routine worship overall? Why do I not strive to up my game every day, month and year?
It is because of this stagnancy in worship that the state of my imaan is such, I feel. How do I expect Allah to increase His love, mercy and grace for me when I don’t increase my worship and love for Him? Surely the two must be connected.
It all comes down to Jihad. Of the nafs. I need to give up my love for eating more often so I can please Allah and increase my distance from the Hellfire as much as possible. If one day of fasting gets me seventy years away, I could be farthest from it in no time inshaAllah. May Allah give me the strength, accept my efforts and be pleased with me.
Volume 3, Book 31, Number 202:
Narrated Abu Huraira (radiallaahu `anhu):
My friend (the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)) advised me to observe three things:
(1) to fast three days a month;
(2) to pray two Rakat of Duha prayer (fore-noon prayer); and
(3) to pray Witr before sleeping.
it is mustahabb to fast three days each month, and it is best to fast the ayaam al-beed, which are the 13th, 14th and 15th of the month.
It was narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to me:
“It is sufficient for you to fast three days every month, because for every good deed you will have (the reward of) ten like it, so that will be like fasting for a lifetime.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari (1874); Muslim (1159).
Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked:
It was narrated in the hadeeth that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) advised Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) to fast three days of each month. When should these fasts be observed, and should they be one after the other?
It is permissible to fast these days one after the other or separately, and they may be at the beginning of the month, or in the middle, or at the end. The matter is broad in scope, praise be to Allaah, because the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did not state any specific days. ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) was asked: Did the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) fast three days of each month? She said: Yes. It was asked: In which part of the month did he fast? She said: He would not bother in which part of the month he would fast. Narrated by Muslim, (1160). But the 13th, 14th and 15th are better, because these are al-ayyaam al-beed.
Majmoo’ Fataawa al-Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, 10/ question no. 376.
Is it necessary to make an intention before fasting? If yes, when to make that intention?
Narrated Salama bin Al-Akwa (radiallaahu `anhu):
Once the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) ordered a person on ‘Ashura’ (the tenth of Muharram) to announce, “Whoever has eaten, should not eat any more, but fast, and who has not eaten should not eat, but complete his fast (till the end of the day).
It was narrated by Ibn ‘Umar from Hafsah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
Whoever does not have the intention of fasting before Fajr, there is no fast for him.
Narrated by Imam Ahmad, the authors of al-Sunan, Ibn Khuzaymah and Ibn Hibbaan; they classed it as saheeh and marfoo’.
Obligatory or Voluntary?
Summary: For obligatory fasts, intention has to be made before Fajr that day. But for voluntary fasts, intention can be made later on during the day if one hasn’t eaten/drunk/had intercourse after Fajr that day. Read below for details.
It is essential to make the intention to fast the month of Ramadan at night, before Fajr. It is not sufficient to start fasting it that day without the intention. Whoever finds out at the time of Duha that today it is Ramadan and makes the intention of fasting has to refrain from eating until sunset, and he also has to make up that day. This is with regard to obligatory fasts. With regard to naafil (voluntary) fasts it is permissible to make the intention to fast on the day, if you have not eaten or drunk or had intercourse after Fajr, because it was proven in the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) entered upon her one day at duha time and said, “Do you have anything (any food)?” She said, “No.” He said, “Then I am fasting.” Narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh.
Allah’s Apostle used to pray (optional, non-obligatory prayer) while riding on his mount (Rahila) wherever it turned, and whenever he wanted to pray the compulsory prayer he dismounted and prayed facing the Qibla.
YES! You can pray (voluntary prayers) while you’re travelling on a car/bus/animal/train/airplane etc. All you have to do is to make sure that you’re facing the qiblah when you start the prayer. That, too, becomes unnecessary when you’re on an airplane.
Next time you’re on a bus, killing time, try praying a few nawafil instead. :)
My Friday went great, Alhamdulillah. I told many people about the revelation-day. It was news to most of them. But yeah, it was an awesome experience. :)
You’re going to love today’s Hadith! See for yourself..
Narrated Talha bin ‘Ubaidullah:
A man from Najd with unkempt hair came to Allah’s Apostle 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 Apostle 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 Apostle replied, “No, but if you want to offer the Nawafil prayers (you can).” Allah’s Apostle further said to him: “You have to observe fasts during the month of Ramadan.” The man asked, “Is there any more fasting?” Allah’s Apostle replied, “No, but if you want to observe the Nawafil fasts (you can.)” Then Allah’s Apostle further said to him, “You have to pay the Zakat (obligatory charity).” The man asked, “Is there any thing other than the Zakat for me to pay?” Allah’s Apostle replied, “No, unless you want to give alms of your own.” And then that man retreated saying, “By Allah! I will neither do less nor more than this.” Allah’s Apostle said, “If what he said is true, then he will be successful (i.e. he will be granted Paradise).”
Yes, doing only the Faraidh (obligatory) is required of us. But there’s always the option of doing more (voluntary) worship. Why, you ask? Because it is for our own good. From another Hadith we get to know that on the Day of Judgement, a person will be brought who will have incomplete Fardh (obligatory) actions (meaning: he either left out some, or didn’t do them properly). Allah will ask the angels to fill in those spaces by his voluntary worship and then he’ll be sent to Paradise. But imagine if we go there and all we have with us is the faraidh, and some spaces are left blank. What will fill them up?
So, doing the voluntary worship is for our own benefit. It only takes a few minutes to pray the extra two Sunnah/nafal prayers. There’s no fixed amount of sadaqah (charity) we need to give. Half a date also does the job. And voluntary fasts are just so easy! You can do Iftar (break them) any time if it’s getting hard to carry them on. Intention counts, remember?
My lesson from this Hadith is to perform my faraidh properly and do a little more effort for nawafil, inshaAllah. :)