Friday, 27 March 2020

Quarantine in Islam, and Allah's Decree

By Imam Wahbah az-Zuḥaylī, may Allah have mercy on him 

Al-Madinah

One of the passive means of protection that protects against many contagious diseases and prevents the spread of epidemics like cholera and the plague is to confine the illness to where it is, what is called al-ḥajr as-ṣiḥḥī [i.e. quarantine], even though we have firm conviction that Allah, Glorified and Exalted is He, is the One who cures and causes illness. The Exalted One says, quoting the statement of Ibrāhīm, peace be upon him, “He who gives me food and gives me drink; and when I am ill, it is He who cures me.” [ash-Shuʿarāʾ 26:79-80] He, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, after negating that there is any intrinsic contagion, independent of Allah’s doing, said, {Flee from the leper the way you would flee from a lion.} There is also al-Bukhārī’s narration in at-Tārīkh: {Be wary of the leper the way you would be wary of a lion.} This is part of using the outward means that Allah has commanded us to, and they are from Allah’s predestination. ʿUmar, may Allah be pleased with him, said regarding the Plague of ʿAmwās to Abū ʿUbaydah ibn al-Jarrāḥ, may Allah be pleased with him, ‘Yes, we are fleeing from Allah’s predestination to His decree’, or ‘from what Allah has predestined to what Allah has predestined.’ He, peace and blessings be upon him, in what has been narrated by at-Tirmidhī, said about ar-ruqyah,[1] ‘It is from Allah’s predestination.’ Thus, just as illness is from Allah’s predestination and to be cured is from Allah’s predestination, prevention is also from Allah’s predestination.

[Translated from Qaḍāyā al-Fiqh wa al-Fikr al-Muʿāṣir (Damascus: Dār al-Fikr, 1430/2009) v.2, p.342-343]

…One of the most important ways of protecting the environment is what is called al-ḥajr as-ṣiḥḥī [i.e. quarantine] nowadays, in order to prevent the spread of contagious diseases and dangerous epidemics, in order to contain the illness as much as possible. This is a type of precautionary or protective planning that has been affirmed by Islam from the very beginning. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, {The one who is ill is not brought into the presence of the one who is healthy.}[2] There is also the ḥadīth in al-Bukhārī: {Flee from the leper the way you would flee from a lion}, and this is a type of protection.

As for precautions and quarantine, this is understood from other ḥadīths, such as his statement, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, {If you hear about a plague in a land, do not enter it, and if it occurs in the land that you are in, do not leave it.}[3]

This planning does not contradict faith in Allah’s decree and predestination, due to ʿUmar’s statement, may Allah be pleased with him, when ʿUbaydah ibn al-Jarrāḥ said to him, ‘Are you fleeing from what Allah has predestined?’: ‘Yes. We are fleeing from what Allah has predestined to what Allah has predestined…’[4]

[Translated from Mawsūʿah al-Fiqh al-Islāmī wa al-Qaḍāyā al-Muʿāṣirah (Damascus, Dār al-Fikr, 1434/2013), v.12, p. 796]


[1] (tn): i.e. reciting something from the Qurʾān, or something else that has been related, over the patient or someone else for the sake of protection and cure
[2] Related by Muslim, Aḥmad, and Abdur Razzāq from the ḥadīth of Abū Salamah ibn ʿAbdir Raḥmān ibn ʿAwf
[3] Related by Al-Bukhārī, Muslim, Mālik in al-Muwaṭṭaʾ, and at-Tirmidhī on the authority of Usāmah ibn Zayd, may Allah be pleased with him.
[4] Its source is in the previous ḥadīth. (tn): This is also found in Riyāḍ as-Ṣāliḥīn by Imam an-Nawawī, the chapter on it being disliked to leave a land where there is an epidemic in order to flee from it and it being disliked to enter it. Please see p.563-564 (Jeddah: Dār al-Minhāj, 1427/2006).


Related:
Fatwa on the Closure of Masjids 

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

Fatwā Regarding the Suspension of the Jumuʿah Prayer and Khuṭbah as well as Congregational Prayers and all Other Gatherings in Masjids

A translation of this fatwa

 
In the Name of Allah, the All-Merciful, the Most Merciful
Fatwā of the Scholarly Fiqh Council of the Ministry of Endowments and the Scholars’ Union of Sham

Regarding the Suspension of the Jumuʿah Prayer and Khuṭbah and Congregational Prayers in Masjids because of the Coronavirus

· In accordance with the fiqhī rulings that are contained within the objectives of the Islamic Revealed Law for the sake of preserving life, protecting against illnesses as much as possible, and maintaining the physical health of those who are legally accountable;

· In accordance with the World Health Organization declaring that the coronavirus has become a global pandemic, and that nowhere in the world is removed from this danger;

· Out of concern for the well-being of those who pray and frequent the masjids, to support precautionary measures against the spread of gastric and infectious diseases, within measures to combat the spread of the coronavirus;

· In accordance with the necessary instructions issued by both governmental and health authorities to close schools, universities, institutes and other educational facilities temporarily in order to avert harm;

· In accordance with the established fear of experts and specialists within the medical profession, and others, that this epidemic will definitely or most likely spread because of crowded places and gatherings;

· Because the jurists[1] have established that preponderant likelihood[2] holds the place of certainty in juristic rulings of the Revealed Law;

The Scholarly Fiqh Council and the Scholars’ Union of Sham declare the following:

Fatwā Regarding the Suspension of the Jumuʿah Prayer and Khuṭbah as well as Congregational Prayers and all Other Gatherings in Masjids, temporarily, until the reasons behind said suspension cease to be, based on an official statement from the Ministry of Health. This is because, in emergency circumstances such as these, the fuqahāʾ must take into consideration the calamities that have befallen people when giving their rulings, which is to consider that which will protect them from harm and save lives, and that which is in accordance with the Islamic Revealed Law. Thus, we hold that:

1. There is no objection in the Revealed Law:

· To suspending congregational prayers (which are an emphasized sunnah)[3] in masjids and sufficing with performing them at home, temporarily, until the reasons behind said suspension cease to be, based on an official statement from the Ministry of Health.

· To suspending the Jumuʿah Prayer and Khuṭbah in masjids, and thus people must pray Ẓuhr in their homes instead of Jumuʿah, temporarily, until the reasons behind said suspension cease to be, based on an official statement from the Ministry of Health.

· To suspending all classes, meetings, social gatherings and celebrations in masjids, as well as all halls that are specifically for celebrations or grieving, temporarily, until the causes behind said suspension cease to be, based on an official statement from the Ministry of Health.

- Due to the Exalted One’s statement: “Wherever you turn, there is Allah’s Face. Allah is All-Encompassing, All-Knowing.” [al-Baqarah 2:115]

- And the ḥadīth of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, {For me, the earth has been made both a masjid and made pure.}

2. It is obligatory in the Revealed Law:

· To utilize the means of protection against the epidemic, treatment and quarantine as obligated by the Ministry of Health.

· If one feels that they are afflicted with the epidemic, to openly declare it so that the infection is not transferred to others and so that diseases do not spread.

- Due to the ḥadīth of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, {The one who is ill is not brought into the presence of the one who is healthy.} (Agreed upon.)

- And due to his ḥadīth, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, {There is to be no harm and no reciprocating of harm.} (The Muwaṭṭaʾ of Imam Mālik.)

3. It is permissible in the Revealed Law:

· To suffice with merely giving the call to prayer[4] for the five daily prayers from the masjids, temporarily, until the reasons behind said suspension cease to be, based on an official statement from the Ministry of Health.

· That the muʾadhdhin say at the end of the adhān: ‘People, pray in your homes. O Allah, lift tribulation, epidemics and evil illnesses from us.’ This is legitimate in times of epidemics and gastric diseases.

- Due to the ḥadīth of ʿAbdullah ibn ʿUmar, may Allah be pleased with him, from the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, that he would command the caller to call people to pray and then tell them to pray in their stopping places on cold nights and rainy nights, which is agreed upon. In other words, pray in your homes, and if this is the case with rain and severe cold, then in times of epidemics and contagions it is even more so.

4. Likewise, we ask you to seek refuge in Allah the Exalted, to deliver His lands and His slaves from tribulation and disease:

· Especially in the hours before dawn,[5] by seeking Allah’s forgiveness and doing a lot of glorification[6]

· By asking Allah for pardon and well-being, especially when prostrating and in places where supplications are more likely to be answered

· By sending lots of blessings upon the Beloved Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace

- Due to Allah’s statement: “I said, ‘Ask forgiveness of your Lord. Then He is Endlessly Forgiving. He will send the sky down on you in abundant rain and provide you with more wealth and children, and grant you gardens and grant you waterways.’” [Nūḥ 71:10-12]

- Due to His statement, Exalted and Blessed is He: “The part of the night they spent asleep was small, and they would seek forgiveness before the dawn.” [adh-Dhāriyāt 51:17-18]

- Due to his statement, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, to Ubay ibn Kaʿb, may Allah be pleased with him, when he said to him, ‘I have made my entire supplication the sending of blessings upon you’: {Therefore, Allah will take care of whatever troubles you in your worldly life and your Hereafter, and will forgive you your sins.} (at-Tirmidhī)

- Due to the statement of Imam ash-Shāfiʿī: ‘I have not seen anything more beneficial in the face of disease than at-tasbīḥ.’ (Ḥilyat al-Awliyāʾ)


Asking Allah the Exalted to deliver us from tribulation and disease

Damascus, 19th Rajab, 1441/ 14th March, 2020


The Scholarly Fiqh Council                        The Scholars’ Union of Sham


[1] Ar. al-fuqahāʾ
[2] Ar. ghalabat aẓ-ẓann
[3] Ar. sunnah muʾakkadah
[4] Ar. al-adhān
[5] Ar. al-asḥār
[6] Ar. at-tasbīḥ, i.e. saying Subḥān Allah

Friday, 13 March 2020

Ṣalāt at-Tarāwīḥ: 8 or 20 Rakʿah?

A translation of this fatwa from Naseem al-Sham



Question: 

Is Ṣalāt at-Tarāwīḥ 8 or 20 rakʿah? What is the evidence?

Answer (Imam Muḥammad Tawfīq Ramaḍān):

Ṣalāt at-Tarāwīḥ is twenty rakʿah by consensus of all the imams, without any difference of opinion. As for the ḥadīth in which ʿĀʾishah, may Allah be pleased with her, was asked about how the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed in Ramaḍān and she replied, ‘In Ramaḍān and outside of it, he would not do more than eleven rakʿah. He would pray four, and do not ask me about their excellence or their length, and then he would pray another four, and do not ask me about their excellence or their length, and then he would pray three’, it has to do with ṣalāt al-Witr, and ṣalāt al-Witr remains the same, whether in Ramaḍān or not.

Ramaḍān is distinguished by alāt at-Tarāwīḥ and the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, prayed it in the masjid for three or four days and then did not pray it in the masjid, for fear that it would be made obligatory upon the people.[1]

Ibn Ḥajar, and he is the Commander of the Believers in ḥadīth, says the following in Fatḥ al-Bārī, ‘It is on the authority of Ibn ʿAbbās, who said, “I was with ʿUmar in the masjid and he heard the tumult of the people, so he said, ‘What is this?’ It was then said that the people had left the masjid, and this was in Ramaḍān. He said, ‘Whatever remains of the night is more beloved to me than what has passed.’” A similar narration is from the path of ʿIkrimah on the authority of Ibn ʿAbbās. ʿUmar said, “What a good innovation [niʿma al-bidʿah hādhihi] this is!” In some narrations, it is niʿmat al-bidʿah, with a tāʾ at the end. The original meaning of bidʿah is something that is invented and has no precedent, and in the Revealed Law it is that which is opposite to the Sunnah, and thus it is blameworthy. It is a matter of fact that if it falls under that which is approved of in the Revealed Law then it is good, and it falls under that which is disapproved of in the Revealed Law then it is disapproved of. If it is neither, it comes under the category of that which is permissible, and it could take any one of the five rulings.[2] As for his statement that to sleep through it is better, this is a clear statement from him that prayer in the latter part of the night is better than in the first part, but it does not contain anything to suggest that performing the night prayer by oneself is better than performing it in congregation. In conclusion, in this narration, there is no mention of the number of rakʿah that Ubay ibn Kaʿb prayed,[3] and there are different narrations. In al-Muwaṭṭaʾ, it is on the authority of Muḥammad ibn Yūsuf, on the authority of as-Sāʾīb ibn Yazīd that it was twenty-one. Saʿīd ibn Manṣūr has related it from another path and added that they would recite 200 āyāt, and they would stand with sticks because of how long they were standing. Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī has related from the path of Muḥammad ibn Isḥāq on the authority of Muḥammad ibn Yūsuf, who said, “thirteen”. ʿAbdur Razzāq has narrated it from another path on the authority of Muḥammad ibn Yūsuf, who said, “twenty-one”. Mālik has related from the path of Yazīd ibn Khuṣayfah on the authority of as-Sāʾib ibn Yazīd that it is twenty, and this is understood to be exclusive of witr. It is on the authority of Yazīd ibn Rūmān, who said, “In the time of ʿUmar, the people would perform twenty-three.” Muḥammad ibn Naṣr has related from the path of ʿAṭāʾ, who said, “I came upon them in Ramaḍān and they were praying twenty rakʿah and three rakʿah for witr.” Combining between these narrations is possible based on differing circumstances and it is conceivable that these differences are due to the length of the recitation, such that when the recitation was long, the number of rakʿah was less, and vice versa, and ad-Dāwūdī and others were resolved upon this position. The first number agrees with the ḥadīth of ʿĀʾishah that is mentioned after this ḥadīth in the chapter. The second is close to it, and the difference therein regarding anything more than twenty goes back to the difference over witr, such that sometimes witr would be prayed as one and other times it would be prayed as three. Muḥammad ibn Naṣr has related from the path of Dāwūd ibn Qays, who said, “I came upon the people under the rule of Abāna ibn ʿUthmān and ʿUmar ibn ʿAbdul ʿAzīz., i.e. in al-Madīnah, and they were praying thirty-six rakʿah and then three for witr, and Mālik said, ‘This is an old matter for us.’” It is on the authority of az-Zaʿfarānī from ash-Shāfiʿī, “I saw the people praying thirty-nine in al-Madīnah and twenty-three in Makkah, and there is no limitation in this whatsoever.” It is also narrated from him that he said, “If they stand for longer and do fewer prostrations then good, and if they do more prostrations and recite less then good. The former is more beloved to me.” At-Tirmidhī said, “The most that has been said in this regard is that it is prayed as forty-one rakʿah, i.e. with witr.” This is what he said, and Ibn ʿAbdul Barr has transmitted on the authority of al-Aswad ibn Yazīd that it is prayed as forty rakʿah followed by seven for witr. It has also been said that it is thirty-eight, as mentioned by Muḥammad ibn Naṣr from Ibn Ayman, from Mālik. It is possible to place this with the first by joining it with three for witr, but he made it clear in his narration that he would do witr as one, and thus it is forty with the exception of one. Mālik said, “This is what is acted upon.”’

In ʿUmdat al-Qārī Sharḥ Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī, he[4] said, ‘At-Tarāwīḥ is an emphasised sunnah and it is obligatory to perform it in congregation. In the Rawḍaḥ of our companions, ‘In congregation it is virtuous.’ In the Dhakhīrah of our companions, from the majority of the scholars, establishing it in congregation is a communal sunnah, and whoever prays it at home has relinquished the virtue of the masjid. In al-Mabsūṭ, “If someone were to pray at home, if would not be sinful, as this was done by ʿUmar, Sālim, al-Qāsim, Nāfiʿ and Ibrāhīm. Furthermore, it is twenty rakʿah, and it is the position of ash-Shāfiʿī and Aḥmad, and al-Qāḍī has narrated it from the majority of scholars. It has been narrated that al-Aswad ibn Yazīd would pray forty rakʿah followed by seven for witr. According to Mālik, it is nine tarwīḥāt[5] and thirty-six rakʿah exclusive of witr, and his proof is that it is what the people of al-Madīnah did.[6] The proof for the Shāfiʿīs and the Ḥanbalīs is what has been related by al-Bayhaqī with an authentic chain of transmission on the authority of the Companion as-Sāʾib ibn Yazīd, who said, ‘In the time of ʿUmar, may Allah be pleased with him, they would pray twenty rakʿah, and the same in the time of ʿUthmān and ʿAlī, may Allah be pleased with both of them.’ If you were to say, ‘He says in al-Muwaṭṭaʾ, “It is on the authority of Yazīd ibn Rūmān, who said, ‘In the time of ʿUmar, the people would perform twenty-three in Ramaḍān’”, I would reply, ‘Al-Bayhaqī says that the three is witr, and Yazīd never met ʿUmar, so there is an interruption in the chain of transmission.’”’



[1] (tn): This ḥadīth is related by Imams al-Bukhārī and Muslim; please see al-Muʿtamad fī al-Fiqh ash-Shāfiʿī (Damascus: Dar al-Qalam: 1434/2013) by Imam Muḥammad az-Zuḥaylī, v. 1, p. 397-398
[2] (tn): i.e. unlawful (ḥarām, maḥẓūr), disliked (makrūh), permissible (mubāḥ), recommended (mandūb, mustaḥabb, sunnah), or obligatory (wājib, farḍ)
[3] (tn): ‘…and al-Fārūq [i.e. ʿUmar], may Allah be pleased with him, saw the people praying individually in the masjid, or in pairs or congregations of three, so he gathered them behind Ubay ibn Kaʿb and had them pray twenty rakʿah, and the Companions made consensus with him on this.’ Kifāyat al-Akhyār fī Ḥallī Ghāyat al-Ikhtiṣār by Imam Taqī ad-Dīn ad-Dimashqī (Beirut, Dār al-Khayr, 1425/2004), p.112
[4] (tn) i.e. Imam Badr ad-Dīn al-ʿAynī (d. 855 AH), Ḥanafī scholar and contemporary of Imam Ibn Ḥajar al-ʿAsqalānī
[5] (tn): a tarwīhah is a break between sets of two rakʿah
[6] (tn): Please refer to Aqrab al-Masālik li Madhhab al-Imām Mālik by Imam Aḥmad ad-Dardīr (Kano: Maktabah Ayūb, 1420/2000), p.20, in which the author lists the supererogatory prayers and says, ‘…and at-Tarāwīḥ, which is twenty rakʿah...’

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