Prophetic practices of the Ramadan fast
June 30 2015 11:40 PM

1. Eating the pre-dawn meal (Suhoor)
On the authority of Anas (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) that the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “Take the Suhoor (Pre-Dawn Meal) because there is blessing (Barakah) in it.” [al-Bukhari and Muslim]
On the authority of ‘Amr ibn al-’Aas (radiyallaahu ‘an-humaa) that the Messenger of
Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “The difference between our fasting and that of the People of the Book is taking the meal of Suhoor (before dawn).” [Muslim]
2. Delaying the Suhoor meal until just before the break of dawn (Fajr).
Zaid ibn Thaabit (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) said: “We ate Suhoor with the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), then we got up to offer the Salaah (Fajr Prayer). I asked, ‘What was the time between the Adhaan and the Suhoor?’ He said: ‘(The time it would take) to recite 50 verses.’” [al-Bukhari and Muslim]
3. Hastening to break the fast when one is sure that the sun has actually set.
On the authority of Sahl (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu a’laihi wa sallam) said: “The people (i.e. fasting Muslims) will remain upon Khair (good) as long as they hasten to break the fast.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
4. Breaking the fast with fresh dates, before performing the prayer.
On the authority of Anas (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) who said: “The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallaam) used to break his fast with fresh dates (an odd number) before praying. If fresh dates were not available he would break his fast with dry dates; and if dry dates were not available, then he would take a few sips of water.” [Abu Daawood and Tirmidhee. See: Saheeh al-Jaami’, No. 1991, Shaykh al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah)]
5. Supplicating at the time of breaking the fast.
On the authority of Ibn ‘Umar (radiyallaahu ‘an-humaa), who said: “When the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallaam) used to break his fast he (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallaam) would say: ‘The thirst is gone, and the veins are moistened, and the reward is confirmed, if Allah wills.’” [Abu Daawood and ad-DarQutnee, who said: The chain of narrators is good (hasan). See: Irwaa al-Ghaleel, no. 920 by Shaykh al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah)]
6. Feeding a fasting person.
On the authority of Zaid ibn Khaalid (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) that the Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “Whoever gives someone something to break the fast, he would have a reward similar (to the reward of the fasting person) and this would not reduce the reward of the fasting person in any way.” [Ahmad, At-Tirmidhee, Ibn Maajah & Ibn Hibbaan. See: Saheeh al-Jaami’, no. 6415, Shaykh al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah)]
7. Being eager to perform Salaatul-Qiyaam (i.e. Late Night Prayers).
On the authority of Abu Hurairah (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) that the Messenger of Allah
(sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “Whoever stands (in the Late Night Prayers) in
Ramadan, out of Emaan (faith) and Ih-ti-saab (expectation of Allah’s reward), all his previous sins will be forgiven.” [al-Bukhari and Muslim]
8. Standing in Salaatul-Qiyaam with the imam until he completes the prayer.
On the authority of Abu Dharr (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) who said: “The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: ‘Whoever prays Qiyaam – [i.e., Taraaweeh night prayers in Ramadan] – with the imam until he finishes, it will be recorded as if he spent the whole night in prayer.’” [Classified as Saheeh by al-Albaanee in Saheeh at-Tirmidhee].
9. Increasing one’s good deeds, (e.g. Sadaqah, Dhikr, and especially reading the Qur’an).
On the authority of Abu Hurairah (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu) that the Prophet (sallallaahu
‘alaihi wa sallam) said, “When the first night of the month of Ramadan comes…a caller calls out: O seeker of good, come forth; O seeker of evil, desist…”[at-Tirmidhee, Ibn Maajah; and classified as Hasan by Shaykh al-Albaanee in Saheeh al-Jaami’, No. 759]
10. Restraining the tongue from false speech and its actions.
On the authority of Abu Hurairah (radiyallaahu ‘an-hu), that the Messenger of Allah
(sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “Whoever does not give up false speech (lying,
slander, etc.) and acting upon it (i.e. the actions based upon such speech), and ignorant behaviour - Allah has no need of him giving up his food and his drink.” [al-Bukhari]
(Collection, arrangement, translation: Abu Muhammad)

Sickness and rulings pertaining to fasting
Question: What is the ruling on fasting concerning a patient who suffers from chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart problems?  Is the fast valid despite his extreme suffering? Is it obligatory for him to fast, or is he allowed to abandon fasting?
Fatwa: All perfect praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that none is worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.
There is no doubt that diseases are of different degrees in terms of severity. Moreover, some diseases may affect the fast while others may not. Thus, patients are of various states with regards to fasting:
First: Patients who suffer from diseases that do not affect the fast, such as common cold, easy headache, toothache, and so on. A patient is not allowed to abandon fasting in this case, instead, it is obligatory for him to fast.
Secondly: Patients who face hardship in fasting but are not harmed by it. Fasting is disliked in this case, and it is permissible for one to abandon fasting.
Thirdly: Patients for whom fasting involves hardship and harm, as when one suffers from kidney disease, diabetes, and so on. Fasting is forbidden in this case. The scholars have two different opinions on whether fasting in this case absolves one of his liability or not. Some say that it does while others say that it does not. Ibn Hazm, may Allah have mercy upon him, adopted the second opinion arguing that the patient declines to accept the concession prescribed by Allah for him to abandon fasting.
Consequently, a patient who suffers a chronic disease has to abandon fasting, and it is even forbidden for him to do it, provided that it is seriously harmful to him.
We ask Allah to heal all Muslim patients and to make them healthy.
As for making up for the missed days, there are some details in this case. If the patient is likely to recover, then he has to make up for the missed days after recovery. Allah Almighty says (what means): {So whoever among you is sick or on a journey [during them] - then an equal number of days [are to be made up].} [Qur’an 2: 184]
If recovery is not expected, however, then one is required to give an expiation by feeding a poor person for each day that he missed. The amount of the expiation is one mudd [volumetric measure (handful) equalling 750 grams].
Allah knows best.
Source: The Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs

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