In the Hadith, great
rewards have been mentioned for fasting. The fasting person has a very high
status in the sight of Allâh Ta’âla. Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam
said: “The person who fasts in the month of Ramadhân solely for the pleasure of
Allâh Ta’âla and for gaining His reward, all his past minor sins will be
forgiven.” Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: “The smell which
emanates from the mouth of a fasting person is more beloved in the sight of
Allâh Ta’âla than the fragrance of musk.” On the day of judgement, one would
receive great rewards for fasting.
It is related in a Hadith
that a table below the Arsh of Allâh Ta’âla will be laid for the fasting
persons on the day of judgement. They will sit at this table and partake of the
food while all the other people will still be busy giving their account of
deeds. On seeing them, they will say: “How is it that these people are eating
and drinking while we are still occupied in giving an account of our deeds?” It
will be said to them that they used to fast while you abstained from fasting.
This fasting is also a great pillar of Islam. The person who does not fast in
the month of Ramadhân commits a major sin, and his Deen
shall become weak.
Fasting in the month
of Ramadhân is fard on every Muslim who is not a lunatic nor an
immature person (minor). As long as there is no valid excuse, it is not
permissible to abstain from fasting. If a person vows to fast, fasting
becomes fard on him on account of this vow. The qada and
kaffarah fasts are also fard. Apart from this, all other fasts
are nafl – if a person keeps them he will be rewarded, and if he does
not do so, there will be no sin on him. However, the fasts of eid ul-fitr,
eid ul-ad’hâ, and the three days following eid ul-ad’hâ are all
Once the time of
fajr salâh approaches (i.e. dawn) until the time of sunset, a person
should make the intention of fasting and abstain from all food, drink, and
sexual intercourse. This is known as fasting in the Shariah.
It is not necessary to
make a verbal intention. Instead, once a person has this in his heart that
today he is fasting and he does not eat or drink anything, nor does he
indulge in sexual intercourse – his fast will be valid. If a person makes a
verbal intention by saying: “O Allâh! I will fast for Your pleasure
tomorrow”, or he says the following words in Arabic:
even then there is no
harm in this.
A person did not eat
nor drink anything the entire day and remained hungry and thirsty from
morning till evening. However, in his heart he did not have the intention of
fasting but merely abstained from food due to a lack of hunger, or, for some
reason or the other he did not get the opportunity of eating anything – in
such a case his fast will not be valid. Had he made the intention of fasting
in his heart, his fast would have become valid.
According to the
Shari’ah, the time of fasting commences from subah sâdiq.
Therefore, as long as the subah sâdiq time does not expire, eating,
drinking, etc. is permissible. Some women wake up early and after having a
meal, they make the intention of fasting and sleep away thinking that once
the intention is made, eating and drinking is not permissible. This is a
gross error. As long as the subah sâdiq time does not expire, it is
permissible to eat and drink. This is irrespective of whether the intention
of fasting has been made or not.