Cleanliness of the body in Islam

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The Islamic prayer ( salat ) is a special way of worshipping Allah and offering devotion to Him which has been taught by Allah, the Almighty, and by the Holy Prophet (Peace be on him).  There are seven pre-requisites of Prayers. Without all these, Prayer is not valid. These are the essentials of Prayers', and hence obligatory (Fard).

Seven pre-requisites of Prayer:

1.      Cleanliness of the body.

2.      Cleanliness of the clothes.

3.      Cleanliness of the place (where Prayer is being offered).

4.      Hiding (covering) parts of the body-ordained to be covered  (i.e. the Satr).

5.      Time being proper for the Prayer.

6.      Facing the Qiblah.

7.      Saying the 'intention' (Niyyah).

Body's cleanliness means that it should be free from all impurities (Najaasat).which are of two type:

1.      Visible impurities  (Haqeeqi),  such as: urine; faeces; blood, or wine.

2.      Invisible impurities  (Hukmi). which are two type.

a.       Lesser type or minor uncleanliness  known as 'Hadath Asghar  in such case Ablulation (wudu) is required.

b.      Major uncleanliness', known as 'Hadath Akbar and Janabat'. in most cases can only be removed from the body by taking a bath (GHUSUL)

Before doing ablution one must sure that his or her  is correct, In what circumstances the bath is become obligatory? and proper method to performing  the bath. bath (ghusul)   It is also a practices of Muslims to clean the private parts after the call of nature

The abulation is neccessary for an obligatory, sunnah and optional  prayers; reciting and touching  the Holy Qur'an; Sajdah-e-Talawat, offering funeral prayers; or  and  many other  kinds of worship .

Authortiy of Abulation in Holy Quran sura-. Maida  (5:6) Allah says:
  O you who believe! When you rise up for prayer, wash your face, and your hands up to the elbows, and lightly rub your heads and (wash) your feet up to the ankles. And if you are unclean, purify yourselves. And if you are sick or on a journey, or one of you comes from the closet, or you have had contact with women, and you find not water, then go to clean, high ground and rub your faces and your hands with some of it. Allah would not place a burden on you, but He would purify you and would perfect His grace upon you, that you may give thanks.

It is highly virtues to remain in Wadu condition in all time.  The general rule is one should make fresh ablulation before each prayer, however, one's wadu is valid until  unless the following one of the eight (8)  conditions  take place  known as the nullifiers of Ablution (Nawaquid of Wudu), namely:


Things which Nullify Wudhu:

1.      Discharging urine; faeces, or any other matter from these passages.

2.      Passing stomach gases from the back.

3.      Flow of blood, or pus from any part of the body.

4.      Mouthful-vomiting.

5.      To fall asleep, while lying down, or when leaning against some thing.

6.      Fainting due to illness, or for any other reason.

7.      Going mad;  insane.

8.      Laughing aloud in Prayers (Salat)

If a person requiring wadu he or she is in state of Hadather Asghar.  It is makrooh Tahrimi to touch the Holy Quran or even the empty spaces of the pages.  but is permissible to recite the Quran without touching.   If a verse of Holy Quran is written on a page which is not a part of Holy Quran i.e., books, or newspaper,  it will be permissible to touch the book or page but not the verse.  minor children may touch the Quran without Wudhu,  It is not permissible to perform Salaat.

Islamic ablution (Wudu) consists of many actions Some actions are absouletly obligatory' (Fard). without these actions the ablution is invalid.   There are some actions which may be left out, the 'ablution' will not be invalidated; though it will be improper (Naquis). Such actions are called 'Sunnah'. There are certain other actions which bring greater blessings of Allah, known as 'desirables' (Mustahab'bat). If these are left out, no harm is done

No doubt clean water play important role in acheiving the purity , alternatively in absence of water or health reasons the dry abulation is ordered by Almighty Allah.

Obligatory' (Fard) actions in Ablution:

There are four compulsory actions (Fard) in Ablution:

1. Washing the face from hair of the forehead to the lower portion of the chin; and across from one ear to the other;

2. Washing both hands and arms upto the elbows.

3.      Performing the Masa'h (wiping with wet hands, one fourth of one's head).

4.      Washing both the feet upto the ankles.

Sunnah' actions in Ablution:

    1. Saying the Intention (Niyyah).
    2. Reciting 'Bismillah'.
    3. Washing the hands, three times, upto the wrists.
    4. Brushing teeth with a tooth-stick (Miswak).
    5. Rinsing the mouth, thrice.
    6. Sniffing water into the nostrils, thrice.
    7. Combing (doing Khilal) the beard with the fingers.
    8. Passing fingers of both hands, against each other, and also passing them through the toes (Khilal of fingers and toes).
    9. Washing, each limb, three times.
    10. Performing the Masa'h once over the whole head i e. wiping head with wet hands.
    11. Performing the Masa'h of the two ears.
    12. Performing Ablution (Wudu) in proper order.
    13. Washing each part, one after the other, without pause, to ensure that no part dries up before the next step.

Desirable' (Mustahab) actions in Ablution:

  1. To begin Ablution (Wudu) from the right side Some scholars regard this among the Masnun (Sunnah) acts. This is quite likely.
  2. Performing 'Masa'h' of the nape.
  3. Performing Ablution all by himself, without taking other's help.
  4. Facing Qiblah.
  5. Performing Ablution while sitting at a clean and elevated place.

Undesirable' (Makrooh) actions in Ablution:

  1. Performing Ablution at a dirty place.
  2. Blowing one's nose with the right hand.
  3. Talking worldly affairs while performing Ablution.
  4. Performing Ablution in a manner contrary to Sunnah.

Complete list of actions in Ablution:

  1. With the intention of saying the prayers (Salat) one should take running clean water (or take water in a clean bucket etc.
  2. Wash hands upto the wrists.
  3. Rinse the mouth three times; brush the teeth.
  4. Sniff water into each nostril, three times;  cleanse the nose.
  5. wash the face, three times.
  6. hands, up to the elbows.
  7. Perform 'Masa'h of the head and ears
    (moving palms of wet hands over-head, starting from top of forehead to the back and pass both hands over the back of the head to the neck.
  8. Rub wet fingers into the grooves of both ears and holes, and also pass the wet thumbs behind the ears).
  9. Wash the feet, including the ankles.

MASA'H ON SOCKS  (Wiping the socks with wet hands):

Masa'h is permissible on three kinds of socks:

1.      Socks made of leather covering the feet upto the ankles.

2.      Such kind of woolen or cotton socks which have a leather sole.

3.      Wollen or cotton socks, so thick and strong that they are not torn (damaged) if one walks wearing them without shoes etc., for a distance of three or four miles,

It is permissible to perform Masa'h when the proper socks are worn after the Ablution, or after washing the feet, and having continuously worn them, even after the Ablution breaks.  Masa'h on socks is allowed for one day and a night, if one is at home, or is staying at some place. If one is on a journey, Masa'h is permissible for three days and three nights.
Masa'h is to be performed on the upper part of the socks. Wet your fingers with water. then put three fingers on the toes, pulling them upwards. apply full fingers, and not only their tips.  There is no Masa'h on the sole or the heels.

Important note: mash'a on reqular socks is not permitted, also one should make mas'ha upper part of the socks rather than only sol or the heels. It is better to wash feet rather than taking risk.

Q. Is Masa'h (wiping) allowed on the torn socks?

A. If the sock is torn so much that its flaw is equal to the area of three small toes, or the sock opens-up during walk to that extent, then Masa'h (wiping) is not permitted. If the damage is less, Masa'h is permissible.

Q. From what time the duration of wiping (Massah) over the socks is to be counted?

A. The permissible duration, for wiping (Massah) is calculated from the moment the ablution is nullified. From that time onwards, the Massah is allowed on socks: for one day and one night; or, for three days and three nights, as the case may be. For example, if socks are worn on Friday morning after ablution, and it (ablution) nullifies after the time for Zuhr prayer is over, a local person (Muqim) can perform Massah till the time of Zuhr prayer on Saturday. If the person is a traveller (not local) he can perform Massah till Zuhr prayer on Monday.

Q.  What are the things that invalidate Massah?

A. The same acts which nullify the ablution, also nullify the Massah. Apart from that, Massah becomes invalid as soon as: (1) The permissible period for Massah is over; (2) The socks are taken off, (3) The socks are torn, making a hole as big as three toes.

Q.  What, if one takes off the socks, or the time for Massah expires, while one has the ablution?

A. Under both these situations, it is enough to wash the feet only, and put on the socks. It is, however, desirable (Mustahab) to renew the entire ablution.

Q. What should a traveler do if he returns home only one day and one night after he began the Massah on socks?

A. He should remove the socks and start the Massah again.

Q.  What should a local person (non-traveler) do if he starts on a journey after making Massah at home?

A. If he starts on a journey before the expiry of one day and a night, he can keep the socks on and continue doing the Massah for three days and three nights. If, however, he starts the journey after one day and one night, he must remove the socks and begin with a fresh Massah.

Q.  What, if the socks are torn at several places?

A. We must judge whether the total area of the tear is equal to three toes. If so, Massah is not allowed. If the tear is less, Massah is allowed. However, if the combined tear of the two socks equals three toes, while the tear of each sock, separately, is less than that, then Massah is permissible.

MASA'H ON JABIRAH (SPLINT) Wiping a splint, bandage, plaster etc:

What is Jabirah?

Jabirah is a piece of wood (Splint) used to keep in place a broken (fractured) part of the body. But here it also means: plaster; bandage which covers a wound, or ointment etc., on any part of the body.

Q. What are the instructions for the Masash on: a splint (wood), bandage or a wound's covering?

A. Masa'h is allowed over wood (splint), bandage or the wound's covering, if their removal is harmful, or causes much pain.

Q. On how much of the covering should Masa'h be performed?

A. On the entire covering, whether or not the wound is beneath all of it.

Q. What are the injunctions if removal of bandage does no harm, and causes no pain?

A. If washing the wound is not harmful, nor painful, then it must be washed. If water is harmful, then performing the Masa'h is obligatory (Wajib). But if Masa'h is also harmful then it is permissible to do Masa'h on the bandage, covering etc.


Q. How is it to say the prayer, without ablution?

A. It is a big sin. Some religious scholars hold the person Kafir, who intentionally offers the prayer, without ablution.

Q.  What is the proof of ablution being a necessity for saying the prayer?

A. The following verse of the Holy Qur'an stipulates that ablution is an essential pre-requisite for the prayer.


(O Believers when you rise up for prayer, wash your face, and your hands upto the elbows. And lightly rub your heads. And wash your feet upto the ankles).

And Hadrat Muhammad (Peace be upon him) has said: MIFTAHUS SALATIT TUHUR  (Cleanliness is the key to prayer)


Q. What is the minimum that may be called washing?

A. To pour water on a limb, sufficient enough to wet it, permitting one or two drops to fall down. This is washing in its lowest term Wetting to a lesser degree, is not 'washing'. For example, if one moves wet hands over the face, using so little water that all of it is absorbed and no drops fall down, it will not be considered that one has 'washed' the face. Ablution (Wudu) therefore, will not be complete.

Q. How many times, parts be washed, whose washing is obligatory for ablution?

Ans. Washing them once, is obligatory (Fard) Washing them upto three times, is Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him). And to wash more than three times, is undesirable (Makruh) and not permissible.

Q.  What portion of the face must be washed?

A. The face must be washed from the hair of the forehead to down under the chin; and from the tip of one ear to the tip of the second ear.

Q. Is ablution valid if a small area of the limb, washing of which is obligatory, is left dry?

A. Even if a tiny spot, as small as one hair, is left dry, the ablution will not be valid.

Q.  If one has six fingers, is it obligatory to wash also the sixth finger?

A. Yes. It is obligatory to wash the sixth finger also. Similarly, any additional growth within a part or a limb, whose washing is obligatory, must also be washed.

Q. What is the meaning of performing Massah?

A. To move wet hands over a part of body is known as Massah

Q.  Must a person wet the hands afresh, for performing Massah of the head, or would the moisture still left on them (while washing other parts of the body), suffice for the purpose?

A. It is better to take fresh water, but if hands are wet after washing,

Massah is allowed with them. But Massah is not allowed with hands with which Massah has been performed once before. Similarly, Massah is not allowed with hands: a) soaked from some other wet part, b) or hands moistened by another such part on which Massah has already been done.

Q.  If there are drops of rain on bare head, and such water drops are spread by a dry hand all over the head, would that serve the purpose of Massah?

A. Yes, the Massah is performed.

Q.  Is it necessary, in ablution, to wash the inside of the eyes?

A. No, it is not necessary to wash the inside of: the eyes, the nose or the mouth.

Q. If after ablution one shaves the head, or cuts finger nails, will it be necessary to do fresh Massah of the head, or wash the finger nails again?

A. No, it is not required to be done.

Q. If one's hand is amputated (cut) below the elbow, is it necessary to wash that limb (hand)?

A. Yes, as long as the elbow, or some other portion below it is intact, it must be washed.


Q.  How is it to perform ablution (Wudu) without its intention?

A. If without intention of ablution, one falls in the river, or one keeps standing in the rain so that water passes over all the parts which are necessary for the ablution, it will be considered that the ablution is done for saying prayers. But there will be no blessings for the ablution.

Q.  How to make intention (Niyyah) for ablution (Wudu)?

A. Intention implies the making-up of one's mind at the start of ablution; have the intention of removing impurity, and becoming clean for saying the prayers properly. Such thoughts mean 'intention' i.e. 'Niyyah' for the ablution.

Q.  Is it necessary to express the intention (Niyyah) in words?

A. No, it is not necessary. However, if said in words, that too will be correct.

Q.  With ablution mtact, if fresh ablution is performed, w'nat should be the 'intention' (Niyyah) for that?

A. The sole intention of performing ablution-over-ablution should be to enhance the blessings of Allah and to earn more benefits.

Q.  Must one say the complete Tasmiah in ablution?

A. It is equally permissible to recite:

BISMIL LAHI WAL HAMDU LIL LAHI  i.e., in any of the above three ways

Q.  How is it to use a tooth-stick (Miswak) and what is its method?

A. Brushing the teeth with a tooth-stick (Miswak) is 'Sunnah Mu'akkadah' i.e. Emphasized Sunnah. It has many blessings, and very many benefits. It may be had from the root of a bitter-tree, or its twig e.g., Peelo's root or a stick from the Neem tree, not more than 8 inches in length. It should be rinsed before and after use. First brush the teeth from the right-side, followed by those on the left. The teeth should be brushed thrice, using fresh water each time.

Q.  What is the opinion about gargling?

A. Gargling is an act of Sunnah, both during bath and ablution It should not be done if one is Fasting. During Fasting, only rinse the mouth with a handful of water using the right hand.

Q. How to put water into the nostrils?

A. Hold water in the scooped right hand close to the nose. After this, sniff water into the nostrils (taking care not to let it reach the brain). If one is Fasting, the water should not be sniffed. Instead, it should be put into the nostrils with the hand. Gargling and sniffing water into the nostrils are both Sunnah-mu'akkadah of the Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him).

Q.  Which part of the beard should be combed (to do Khalal) according to the Sunnah?

A. It is Sunnah to comb (to do Khalal with fingers) the lower and middle (part) of the beard. And it is obligatory (Fard) to wash hair on the face adjoining the skin.

Q.  How to comb the fingers i.e., to do Khalal of the fingers?

A. Khalal of the fingers mean that the fingers of both hands should be rubbed against each other and shaken in a manner that they are interwowen. The Khalal of the toe is done by the little finger of the left hand beginning from the little toe of the right foot and ending with the little toe of the left foot.

Q.  How to perform the Massah of the whole head?

A. Wet both hands, place them on both sides of the hair at the forehead. Move both palms and fingers, to the back of the head, upto the nape. Then return hands, ensuring that the whole head is covered.

Q.  Must fresh water be used for the Massah of the ears?

A. No, the water taken for the Massah of the head would do. use index finger for Massah inside the ears. Thumb should be used for outerside of the ear.

Q.  Is it Sunnah or Mustahab (desirable) to start the ablution from the right side?

A. Some religious scholars hold it as Sunnah, while others regard it as desirable (Mustahab).

Q.  How to perform Massah on the back of the neck (nape)?

A.The neck should be wiped with the back of fingers of both the hands. It is an innovation (Bi'dah) to do Massah on the throat.

Q.  What are the other procedures in ablution?

A. There are many procedures for ablution. For example, the following are desirable:

1.      Putting the wet-tip of the small finger into the ear holes.

2.      Performing ablution before the time of prayer.

3.      Rubbing parts of the body while washing them.

4.      Moving the ring on the finger.

5.      Refraining from gossip about worldly affairs.

6.      Avoiding splashing of water on the face (with force).

7.      Not using too much water for ablution.

8.      Reciting Tasmiah while washing each part of the body.

9.      Sending Darud on the Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him) after ablution.

10.  Reciting Kalima of Shahadah, and reciting the following Dua after ablution:

11.  Drinking the left-over water of ablution while standing.

12.  Offering two Raka~hs of prayer after ablution, known as TAHI YAT UL WUDU (Thanks giving for the ablution) etc.


Q. What quantity of an unclean discharge from the body invalidates the ablution?

A. If any small quantity of an unclean fluid, (blood/pus) discharges from the body and flows towards that part of the body whose washing is essential in bath or ablution, will breach the ablution.

Q. Does any blood which remains within the eye, invalidate the ablution?

A. No. It is because washing the inner portion of the eye is not commanded in ablution, or in bath.

Q.  If blood trickles out of a wound, time and again, and is wiped off each time with a finger or a piece of cloth, would that invalidate the ablution?

A.  It must be judged whether the blood would have flowed, had it not been wiped. If it would have flowed, then the ablution breaks; otherwise it remains intact

Q. What things when vomitted nullify the ablution?

A. If mouthful of bile; blood; food, or water is thrown out, the ablution is breached. If, however, only phlegm is thrown out, the ablution is not invalidated.

Q. What, if one vomits again and again, but in little quantity each time?

A. The ablution is breached if one nausea causes several vomits whose total discharge equals a mouthful. However, if a nausea results in vomiting a small quantity which brings relief, and thereafter one nauseates a second time to vomit a small quantity again, the discharge of these two separate episodes will not be added (to see they equal a mouthful), and the ablution will remain intact.

Q.  If blood or pus, oozing out of a boil on any part of the body, stains the clothing, will that dress be considered clean, or unclean?

A. If the blood or pus is so little that it cannot flow from the wound, the clothing will be considered as clean. However, it is better to wash it.

Q.  Is the vomit, which is less than a mouthful, unclean (Napak)?

A. No. It is not.

Q.  Will ablution be invalidated if a leech clings to one's body, and sucks blood to its fill; or, a bug, or a mosquito bites a person?

A. The sucking of blood by a leech will breach the ablution even if no blood flows from the wound after freeing the body from it. The blood would have certainly oozed down the body had it not been sucked by the leech. Ablution, however, will be valid in the case of a mosquito, or a bug bite, because blood sucked by these insects is quite small, and cannot flow.

Q. What type of sleep does not invalidate the ablution?

A. Sleeping in a standing position, or while sitting without any support, or in any posture adopted in the prayer, such as: Sijdah, or a Qa'dah, does not break the ablution.

Q.  Is there such a person whose ablution does not break even by falling asleep?

A. Yes, ablution of the prophets of Allah does not break even if they fall asleep. This was their special privilege and superiority.

Q.  Does bursting into laughter during prayers, break the ablution of all? If so what is meant by 'bursting into laughter'?

A. Bursting into laughter means: Laughing in such a loud way that it is heard by the others who are nearby.

The following are the conditions which invalidate ablution during the prayer:

1.      The person laughing aloud is an adult man, or a woman. (Minor's laughter does not break the ablution).

2.      The person who laughs must be awake. If a person falls asleep during prayer, and then bursts into laughter, his ablution will remain intact.

3.      If one laughs in a prayer requiring bowing (Ruku), or prostration (Sujud). Thus, if one laughs in a funeral prayer, the ablution would not break.

Q.  Is ablution nullified if one sees the private part/s of any other person's body, that must remain hidden (Satr)?

A. No. The ablution remains valid, if one looks at the private part/s of one's oven, or other person's body, intentionally or unintentionally.


The major Uncleanliness (Najaasat-eHukmiyaah i.e. Hadas-e-Akbar and Janabat) can only be removed from the body by  washing the entire body (bath) as known as (ghusul).

 Three kinds of ghusul:

  1. Obligatory (Fard).
  2. Sunnah.
  3. Desirable (Mustahab).

Fard Ghusl (Ghusl has to be done in these circumstances):

  1. Discharge of semen in any circumstances
  2. Sexual intercourse
  3. Menses (Hajdh)
  4. Blood discharge after childbirth (Nifaas)

In state of janaabat the following actions are prohibited

  • Salaat (Prayers any type)
  • Touching the Holy Quran
  • Reciting the Holy Quran
  • To enter into a  Masjid (mosque)
  • To make Tawaaf of Ka'bah

Method Of Ghusl:

  1. Wash hands upto the wrists.
  2. Clean the of the private parts also know as  Istinja  and remove the major Uncleanliness, if any, from the body.
  3. Perform Ablution (Wudu).
  4. Pour some water and rub the whole body. Pour water again over the whole body, three times. Then rinse the mouth and sniff water into the nostrils.

Faraid Of Ghusl:

1.      Rinsing the mouth.

2.      Sniffing water into the nostrils.

3.      Pouring water over the whole body so no single part of the body remained dry including hairs.

Sunnan Of Ghusl:

1.      Washing both the hands upto the wrists.

2.      Washing the private parts and such areas which are not clean.

3.      Having the intention (Niyah) to remove the uncleanliness.

4.      Pouring the water thrice, on the whole body.

Some Issues regarding Ghsul:

Q.  Which Baths are Sunnah, and what are their names?

A. These are four, namely:

    1. Bath for Friday prayers.
    2. Bath for the prayers of the two 'Eids'.
    3. Bath before wearing 'IHRAM' (cloth specially worn by the Hajj pilgrims).
    4. Bath at ARAFAT for the stay there (Waquf).
    5. At the time of conversion to Islam
    6. Washing a dead body

Q.  Which, and how many Baths are 'Desirable' (Mustahab)?

A. These are quite many. However, a few of them being:

    1. Bath on night of the 15th of the month of Sha'ban (known as Shab-e-Bar'at).
    2. Bath on the night of 'Arafa' i.e. the night following the evening of the 8th of Zil-Hiijah.
    3. Bath for the prayer of the Solar and Lunar Eclipse.
    4. Bath for the prayer of Istisqa (Salat-ul-Istisqa), which is a prayer for begging rains from Allah.
    5. Bath before entering the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah.
    6. Bath of a person who has-given a bath to the dead, and
    7. Bath of a disbeliever, after embracing Islam.

Q.  If there is necessity of Bath (Ghusl), and one stands in rain; or dives into the river, water flowing all over the body, would that fulfill conditions of having a Bath?

A. Yes, provided that one also rinses the mouth, and passes water into the nostrils.

Q.  Is it permissible to face the Qiblah while bathing?

A. It is not allowed to face the Qiblah when one is naked. There is no harm, however, if the 'Satr' is covered. (Satr means such parts of one's body which must remain covered, according to Shariah).

Q. How is it to bathe with the Satr, uncovered?

A it is permissible to bathe naked in the bathroom, or at any other secluded place, where one's Satr is not exposed.

Q.  What are the undesirable acts (Makruhat) in a Bath?

A. These are:

1.      Consuming lot of water i.e. unnecessary wastage.

2.       Talking during Bath with the Satr uncovered.

3.       Facing the Qiblah and;

4.       Bathing against Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (Peace be upon him).

Q.  If ablution (Wudu) is not performed before the Bath, is it necessary to do so for prayer, after taking the Bath?

A. Bath covers ablution, as well. Therefore, no ablution is necessary after the bath.

Visible uncleanliness  NAJAASAT HAQIQIY-YAH:

Q.  How many kinds of gross defilement [Najaasat Haqiqiya-yah (Visible dirt)] are there?

A  There are two kinds of gross defilement (Najaasat Haqiqiyyah): One is Najaasat-a-Ghaleeza and the other, Najaasat-a-Khafeefa


Q.  What are: Najaasat-a-Ghaleeza, and Najaasat-a-Khafeefa?

A. (a) Gross defilements are called Najaasat Ghaleeza; (b) Light uncleanliness is called Najaasat-a-Khafeefa.

Q.  How many things fall under the category of gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Ghaleeza)?

A. Urine faeces of  human, excretion of animals, urine of forbidden (Haram) animals, the flowing blood of man and animals, wine and droppings of chicken and ducks, fall under the category of gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Ghaleeza).

Q.  What things fall under the category of Light Uncleanliness (Najaasat-a-Khafeefa)?

A. Urine of permissible (Halal) animals and the droppings of forbidden (Haram) birds, are all Light Uncleanliness (Najaasat-a-Khafeefa).

Q.  To what extent gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Ghaleeza) is excusable?

A. If the gross defilement is thick like an excrement, its maximum extent of three grams is excusable. If it is in liquid form, such as wine, or urine, then it is excusable if the area covered is not more than that of an English one-rupee coin. To be excusable it means that the prayers offered with such defilements on body or the clothes will be valid, though undesirable. Not removing, deliberately, even such an extent of defilement, is not allowed.

Q. How much of light defilement (Najusat a-Khafeefa) is excusable?

A. It is excusable, when it covers less than a quarter of a garment, or less than one-fourth of any particular part of the body.

Q. How to clean the body or a garment from gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Haqiqiyyah)?

A. Gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Haqiqiyyah), whether it be gross defilement (Najaasat--a-Ghaliza) or (Najaasat-a-Khafeefa) i.e. light uncleanliness on the body, or a garment, can be removed by washing three times. The clothes must also be squeezed, all the three times.

Q.  Can defilement be cleaned just by water, or also by something else?

A. Yes, by all thin fluids such as: Vinegar; or water-melon's juice. These are good enough to wash gross defilement (Najaasat-a-Haqiqiyyah)

ISTNNJA  CLEANING PRIVATE PARTS After Urination and Excretion:

Allah says in Holy Quran (9:109):

“.....therein, where there are men who love to purify themselves. Allah Loves the pure...”
This verse was revelead in which Allah is praising the people of Quba who were accustomed to use both stones and water after calls of nature

Q. What is meant by Istinja?

A. Istinja means the removal of dirt that is left on the body after the call of nature: such as urine, or faeces.

Q. How to perform Istimja after urination?

A. After passing urine, its drops should be dried with clean mud, then washed with water.

Q. How to perform Istinja after excreting faeces?

A. After discharging faeces, the unclean area should be wiped with three or five pieces of mud. Then wash the body with clean water.

Q. What is the importance of Istinja?

A. Istinja is desirable (Mustahab) if excrement or urine has not smeared the private parts. Istinja is Sunnah (Masnun) if the dirt spreads around, but covers less than, or equal to a 'Dirham' in area. But if the dirt covers space of over one 'Dirham', it is obligatory (Fard) to perform Istinja.

Q. Which substances may be used for Istinja?

A. Clean mud, or pieces of stone can be used for this purpose. ( note:If there are no proper facilities for  the disposal  of  mud and pebble alike , instead only  water must  be used alternatively  use of toilet paper before applying water

Q. Which substances are undesirable (Makruh) for performing Istinja?

A. It is undesirable (Makruh) to perform Istinja with: bones dung; horse-dung; edibles; coal; pieces of cloth and paper. (toilet paper may be used)

Q. Which hand should be used to perform Istinja?

A. The left hand should be used. It is undesirable (Makruh) to use the right hand.

Q. What things are undesirable (Makruh) in Istinja?

A. It is undesirable to do the Istinja: (I) Facing the Qiblah, or sitting with one's back in that direction. (2) At a place where parts of the body that must remain covered from others (Satr) are exposed to others.

Q. What things are undesirable (Makruh) while urinating, or passing stool?

1.      Urinating or passing stool in a position with the Qiblah  in front or at the back.

2.      It is undesirable (Makruh) to pass urine or stool at a place  where the 'Satr' is exposed to one's view.

3.      Urinating in a standing position.

4.      Urinating or passing stool in a pond, canal, or a well.

5.      Urinating or passing stool at the bank of a canal, pond  etc.

6.      Urinating or passing stool near the wall of a mosque.

7.      Urinating or passing stool in a graveyard.

8.      Urinating into a rat's hole or any other hole in  the ground.

9.      Talking, while urinating or passing stool.

10.  Aiming the urine, from a lower place towards a higher  surface.

11.  Urinating or passing stool at a public resort or pathway.

12.  Urinating or passing stool at a place which is meant for Ablution or bath.


Q.  What sorts ef water are good for Ablution (Wudu)?

A. Ablution (Wudu) and Bath (Gnusl) are allowed with rain water; spring or well's water; stream, river/sea water; melted snow; hail-water; water in a large pond, or a big tank.

Q.  Which are the liquids not allowed for Ablution (Wudu)?

A. The following liquids are not allowed for Ablution:

Fruit juice; squeezed sap (fluids of plants & trees); soup; such viscous water whose colour, smell and taste have changed due to its blending with any permissible thing. Water in small quantity in which some impermissible thing has dropped, or some animal has drowned and died in it; water that has already been used for Ablution or Bath. Also such water which is largely polluted; water from which forbidden (Haram) animals have drunk, and water distilled from: aniseed, rose or any other herb.

Q.  What term is used for the water which has Eeady been used for Ablution or Bath (Wudu & Ghusl)l

A. Such water is called 'used-up-water' (Musta'mil). I1: is clean by itself, but is not permissible for re-using it for Ablution, or Bath. BISMIL-LAHIR-RAHAL4RIR-RAHIM  (In the name of ALLAH, the Beneficent, the Merciful)


Q.  How to clean leather articles, such as: socks; shoes; hold-alls, etc. if some filthy material defiles them?

A. These are cleaned (purified) by rubbing them against the ground, or any other substance, provided filth and its effects are fully removed.

Q.  How to clean (purify) these articles if filth like urine, wine etc. defile them?

A. Washing with water, or any other thin clean liquid, removes the impurity. Therefore other defilements on leather items, except solid dirt; cannot be cleansed by a rub; hence must be washed.

Q.  Could the dirty (Napak) articles like: knife; sword or things of steel; silver; copper or aluminium etc. be cleansed without washing

A. Plain items of iron, which are rust free, and things made of silver; gold, copper; aluminium; brass, and lead—without engravings, also those made of glass, ivory and bone; and crockery, can be purified by rubbing them in a manner that all traces of filth and its effects are completely erased. (Items should have no carving).

Q.  What is meant by 'no-engravings'?

A.  It means that there should be no carving marks (lines etc) on the surface of the things. Due to the uneaven surface, rubbing cannot clean off the dirt. Things, however, become pure by the rubbing, if they just have coloured patterns, but no engravings.

Q.  How to clean the ground which is defiled with urine, wine etc.

A Uncleanliness automatically vanishes once the ground dries up, and the effects of uncleanliness (such as colour, smell and taste) disappear.

Q.  How to clean the baked bricks, or stones of the floor of a house or a mosque, or those on a wall which have been defiled by filth?

A The bricks or stones of a building become clean when their surface dries up and the effects of the filth disappear.

Q.  What is the method of purifying or washing articles like: brass vessels or thick cushions which cannot be wringed?

A The method to be followed in cleaning articles that are difficult or impossible to Wing is as follows:

Wash these once, and leave them. When the water stops dripping, give them a second wash and leave them. Wash for the third time, after water stops dripping. Now they will become clean. However, it is necessary to rub them, as much as possible, so that maximum possible filth is removed.

Q.  Can the defiled clay vessels, be purified?

A. Clay vessels can also be cleansed. The method described in the previous Question & Answer, holds good here also.

Q. Are the ashes of an unclean substance, such as dung, clean or unclean?

A. The ashes of an unclean substance, when burnt, are clean.

Q. What should we do if a rat falls into butter oil (Ghee) and dies?

A. If the butter oil (Ghee) is solid, throw out the rat and the ghee just around it. The remaining butter oil(Ghee)is clean. But if the butter oil (Ghee) is in a melted-form, the entire ghee will be unclean (Napak).

Q.  What is the procedure of purifying unclean butter oil, or oil?

A. Add water to the unclean ghee or oil, equal to its quantity and boil the two together. Then remove the ghee, or oil that floats on the surface. Repeat this process, thrice, and the ghee or oil will become clean.


Q.  Is Ablution (Wudu) allowed with the water, that has been warmed by the heat of the sun?

A. Yes. It is allowed, but not liked.

Q.  Is Ablution allowed with water from a container in which drops of water have fallen from the parts of one's body during ablution?

A. Water that falls from parts of one's body during ablution, or bath, (if there is no visible uncleanliness on the body) is known as used water. If the quantity of used water is less than the unused water in which it has fallen, then it is permissible to use it for bath or ablution. However, if the quantity of used water is greater than or equal to the quantity of unused water, then such water is not permissible for bath or ablution.

Q.  If some clean substance, such as soap or safron, gets mixed with water, is it permissible to use that water for ablution?

A. If a clean substance mixes up with water, ablution is allowed even if one or two characteristics of it change. Nevertheless, if all the three properties of the water change, and it thickens, it its forbidden for use.

Q.  Will a pond or a water tank, measuring: 2 X 50 or 4 X 25, or 5 X 20 yards, qualify as being 'running water'?

A. Yes, it will come under the definition of 'running water'.

Q.  Will it be treated as 'running-water' or a 'bigger reservoir' if the opening of a tank is smaller than that prescribed by the Shariah, but is quite large at the bottom?

A. Such a tank will be taken as 'running water' if it is 10 yards long, and 10 yards wide; and is covered from four sides, or from one or two sides. The cover must be above the water level (not touching water). But if the cover touches the water, the tank will be regarded as a 'small tank' And the rules of 'running water' will not apply, whatever the quantity of water it may have. It means that the open surface of the water, (or if covered, the surface that is not in contact with anyting) is solely to be taken into account, while comparing with the quantity of water allowed in the Shariah. Enis amount of water should, however, not be less than the prescribed measurement set by the Shariah (one yard, in Shariah is 35.88 inches).


Q. What is the ruling  if a disbeliever (Kafir) gets into the well to take out a bucket, and also dives into the water?

A. If the disbeliever was given a bath, and made to cover his Satr (parts of body ordained to be covered) with clean clothes before getting into the well, the water will remain clean. But if he did not bathe, and went down with clothes already on, then all the water will have to be taken out from the well This is because the body and clothes of the disbeliever are often unclean.

Q.  What should be done if the droppings of a pigeon or sparrow fall into a well?

A. The water in the well does not become unclean if the excreta of a pigeon, or a sparrow, or a few droppings (say 2 to 4) of a camel; goat or a sheep fall into the well.

Q.  If there is no particular bucket for a well, and water is taken out by all kinds of buckets, big and small, by the people, what bucket should be used for drawing out the water of such a well to make it clean?

A. If there is no fixed bucket at the well, or the one in use is too big or too small, then a bucket of an average size should be used. An average sized bucket can hold 31E seers of water (about 7 Ibs).

So far we have expanded on the Questions already given in Book II. Now additional problems will be discussed.

DRY ABLUTION (TAYAMMUM) (Cleaning with clay):

Q. What is Dry Ablution (Tayammum)?

A. Purifying (cleaning) the body from Najasaat-e-Hukmiya with clean clay, or any other substance which is considered equivalent to clay; earth, or sod. This is known as dry-ablution (Tayammum).

Q. 'When is dry-ablution (Tayammum) permissible?

A. Dry-ablution is allowed, when water is not available, or there is a danger of falling sick, or the illness getting severe, by the use of water.

Q.  What is meant by Water not available'?

A. If any of the following situations hold, water will be considered as 'not-available':

7.      Water is a mile away.

8.      Water is available but in a region threatened by an enemy. For example, though water is available outside one's house, but there is a threat of being killed by an enemy, or a thief (if one goes out).

9.      Also, if there is a big snake near the well, or a lion nearby.

10.  or there is so little water that if used for ablution, may cause the trouble of thirst.

11.  The well is there, but without rope or a pail

12.  Or when a person is alone, and is helpless to fetch water, nearby

All these conditions mean that 'water is not available'.

Q.  When should the danger to health be considered real?

A. When guessed reasonably by one's own experience, or in the opinion of an experienced physician that the use of water would be injurious for health, then dry ablution (Tayammum) is allowed.

Q. Explain in detail, what is meant by 'water being a mile away?

A. When a person is at a place where there is no water, but assumes due to own intution and estimation, or learns from someone else that water is available within a mile's radius, then it becomes obligatory to fetch it for the ablution. However, if there is nobody to say whether or not water is available, and also there is no other way of ascertaining this, there is no obligation for bringing water for the ablution. Similarly, if there is water at a distance of over one mile, it is not obligatory to fetch it.

Dry ablution (Tayammum) is allowed in both cases, given above.

Q.  How many actions are mandatory (Fard) in dry ablution?

A. The following three actions are obligatory:

8.      First making the intention (Niyyah).

9.      Striking both hands on sod, or lump of dry clay, and wiping
the face with them.

10.  Striking both the hands, on sod, or lump of dry clay, and wiping both arms upto the elbows, with the same hands.

Q. What is the complete method for dry ablution (Tayammum)?

A. First, have the intention: to remove impurities; to say the prayer, and to perform the dry ablution. Then strike both hands over a lump of clay, shaking off the excess dust. But if the hands are smeared with too much dust, blow away the excess and wipe hands across the face in such a way that no part of it is left out. If a spot equal to a single hair, is left out, dry ablution will not be proper. Now strike the hands on the clay once again. After shaking away the excess, put the four fingers of the left hand below the finger tips of the right hand and wipe the hand and arm upto the elbow. The lower side of the right hand is thus covered. Now put the palm of the left hand on the upper side of the elbow and move it down to the fingers. Then move the inside of the left thumb on the back of the right thumb. Likewise, wipe the right hand over the left in the same manner. Then comb (Khilal) the fingers. If a ring is worn, it is necessary to remove it. or atleast shift it. Combing the beard with fingers, is also Sunnah.

Q. Is dry ablution (Tayammum) a substitute both for: ablution, and bath, or only for the ablution?

A. Yes, it is a substitute for the both.

Q.  On what things is dry ablution (Tayammum) allowed?

A. Dry ablution is allowed on: clean earth, and sand; stone and limestone; unglazed earthernware, baked or unbaked; earthen bricks-baked or unbaked; walls of mud; bricks; stone; lime-stone, or yellow clay. Likewise, dry ablution is also allowed on clean dust.

Q.  On what things dry ablution (Tayammum) is not allowed?

A. Dry ablution is not allowed on: wood; iron; silver; gold; copper; brass; cloth, and ashes. In other words, things that melt or burn to ashes in fire, are not proper for dry ablution (Tayammum)

Q. Is dry ablution allowed, even if there is no dust, on the walls made of stone, lime or brick?

A. The presence of dust is not a precondition for all the items on which dry ablution is permissible. Dry ablution is even allowed on: stone; brick; clay pots and wares, which have been washed (having no dust).

Q.  Can dry ablution be performed with the dust that collects over the things on which, otherwise, dry ablution is not allowed?

A. Yes, dry ablution on these otherwise non-permissible items is allowed if dust particles on them start flying around when struck by hand. Yes, also if a mark is left on it when hand is removed from the article.

Q.   If dry ablution has been performed with the intention of touching or reciting the Holy Qur'an, or for entering the mosque, or for calling the Azan, or for acknowledging the greetings (Salam), will such dry ablution also hold good for performing the prayer?

A. No. It will not be valid for the prayers.

Q.  Is prayer allowed with dry ablution which is made for:

a)      offering the funeral prayer,

b)      offering Sajdah of Recitation (compulsory prostration for reciting particular verses from the Holy Qur'an)?

Q. What should a person do who has performed dry ablution due to non-availability of water, and offers the prayer, but water becomes available after the prayer?

A. The prayer, already offered, need not be repeated if water becomes available within or after the prescribed time-limit for that prayer.

Q. What things invalidate dry ablution?

A. The things that breach the ablution, also invalidate the dry ablution. However, the dry ablution, in lieu of bath, can only be invalidated by Major uncleanliness (Hadath-Akbar). if dry ablution was performed due to the non-availability of water, it will be invalidated the moment water becomes available. But if it was necessitated for some other reasons, such as, disease etc., it will be nullified the moment those compelling circumstances are no longer there.

Q. Is second prayer also permissible with dry ablution, which was performed for the first prayer?

A.  Dry ablution performed once, is good for as many prayers as one likes, so long as it is not nullified. Similarly, the dry ablution, performed for an obligatory prayer, is also valid for: saying Nafl prayer; reciting the Holy Qur'an; offering funeral prayers; or Sajdah-e-Talawat, and all other kinds of worship.

Q. What is the maximum time-limit for which dry ablution is valid?

A. Dry ablution is allowed for as long as one does not find water, or till other compelling reasons last. Even if the need continues for many years, there is no harm in performing dry ablution?

 Final note:  Since these  Islamic practices are essential part of our worship (ibbada),  reliable Ulema or alternatively knowledgeable person in Islam shall be contacted  to ensure the proper understanding of these rules:

Article taken (with Thanks) from As-Sidq


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This page was last updated on June 14, 2003 .