Q & A on Ramadhan

Q: Is the fast, compulsory on a sick person?

A: If a person is afflicted with such an illness which makes it difficult to keep the fast and a reliable and genuine doctor has prescribed that he/she should not observe the fast for medical reasons, then it is allowable for this person to miss the fast and observe it at a later time. However if a person because of oldĀ  age is totally incapable of observing the fast, then it is permitted for him/her to pay a Fidyah for such fast missed. Similarly, a person who suffers from a permanent sickness which makes it unbearable for him to observe the fast and he has no hope of recovering in the future, then he/she must pay a Fidyah for each fast missed. However if the person recovers from the illness he/she must make up for the missed fasts.

Note: As long as a person has hope of recovering from his sickness, it is not proper for him to give a Fidyah for his missed fast.


Q: Should a person on journey observe the fast?

A: According to the teaching of the Holy Quran, a person on journey has been given the concession of missing the fast and making it up for it at a later time. However, if there is no difficulty and harm for him to observe the fast on its time, then he should observe it in Ramadhan.


Q: Is it proper for a woman in her menses or in Nifaas to observe the fast?

A: No! It is not permissible for a woman in these conditions to observe the fast, however, she must make up for the missed fast at a later date. If she attains purity during the one of the days of Ramadhan then she must avoid eating and drinking for the rest of that particular day and continue to fast afterwards. (she must make up for this day and the previous days at a later date.)


Q: Is it necessary for a person to utter the (Niyyah) intention of fast with his tongue?

A: It is compulsory to have an intention of the fast, however, Niyyah is the intention of the heart. Therefore, if a person had an intention in his heart but did not utter it with his tongue, there is no harm.


Q: What is the position of a person who started to observe the fast in the morning but did not make intention before starting?

A: The intention for the fast of Ramadhan can be made from the previous night until before midday of the following day. Therefore, this person should try to make an intention before midday. In addition, eating Sihri before the fast, itself is an indirect intention of observing the fast even though the person did not utter it.


Q: If after taking Sihri, a person realizes that he ate Sihri after the break of dawn when the fasting day had already started, what should he do? Is his fast valid?

A: This fast is not valid. This person must make up for this fast after the month of Ramadhan. However, he should refrain from eating, drinking etc. for the rest of the day.


Q: The horizon was very dark and a person thought the sun had set already so he broke his fast. However when he checked the time he realized that he had broken his fast before sunset, what should he do?

A: The fast is nullified and the person must make up for this fast after the month of Ramadhan. (I.e. Qadhaa of this fast is necessary).


Q: As a wife, sometimes when I cook food for my husband and it is not tasty, I am subjected to his harshness and bad words. Is it permissible for me in such a case to taste the food while cooking it when I am observing the fast?

A: Yes, only in such a case it would be permissible, to the extent of necessity. However, if this is not the case then it would not be permissible.


Q: Upon getting up this morning the time was so short that I did not have the time to take a bath before staring my fast. As such, the break of dawn began and I started my fast while I was in the state of Janaabah (sexual pollution). What is the state of my fast?

A: Your fast is valid and good.


Q: Does injection break the fast?

A: The fast is only broken when something enters the stomach or brain through the normal vessels and passages. As such, injections will not break the fast.


Q: A person after beginning the fast fell sick. As such, the doctor had given him medication which he took. Has this person committed a sin? Must he make Kaffaarah (atonement) or should he simply make a Qadhaa?

A: If by observing the fast, there is the high possibility of increase in sickness then it is permissible to break the fast and only the Qadhaa (making up for that day) will be essential. If however, this sickness could be brought under control by taking an injection, then this should be done in order to avoid breaking the fast.


Q: While fasting a person kissed his wife and then ejaculated. Is Kaffaarah upon him or simply Qadhaa?

A: Only Qadhaa is essential upon him.


Q: What is the ruling regarding extracting a tooth while fasting or applying medicine in the mouth (while fasting)?

A: In cases of a severe necessity it is permissible, however if it is not necessary, then it is Makruuh to do it. If the medicine goes into the stomach and is equal or more than the saliva (mixed with it) then it breaks the fast. Similarly if the blood from the mouth (after extracting the tooth) enters into the stomach and is equal or more than the saliva then it will break the fast.


Q: If because of menses a woman cannot observe the fast, is it proper for her to eat and drink during the days of Ramadhan?

A: Yes, it is permissible for her to eat and drink but she should not do it in front of others. If she attains purity during the day then she must adopt the same restrictions of the fasting person for the rest of the day.


Q: What is the ruling if blood comes out the nose, went down the throat and entered the stomach?

A: In this case, the fast will be broken.


Q: Eye drops were placed in the eyes and their effects reached the throat, what is the situation of the fast?

A: Fast is not broken.


Q: What is the ruling regarding toothpaste or toothpowder while fasting?

A: It is Makruuh. If anything goes into the throat from the toothpaste or toothpowder then the fast will be broken.


Q: Does vomiting break the fast?

A: If the vomiting occurred for itself, then the fast is not broken even if it is more than a mouthful. If after the vomiting occurred, a very small amount was swallowed by the person then his fast is broken. Induced vomiting, when it amounts to a mouthful, breaks the fast. If it is less than a mouthful the fast is not broken.


Q: If while sleeping during the day, a person experienced a wet-dream (i.e. pre-nocturnal emission) would his fast be broken?

A: His fast will not be broken.