VOWS


Bahishti Zewar, Fiqh, Part 3-Fasting, Zakaat, Qurbani, Hajj etc. / Sunday, August 31st, 2008
  1. A person takes a vow that if a certain wish or work
    of his is fulfilled, he will undertake to carry out a certain act of
    ibaadah. Once this wish or work of his is fulfilled, it will be
    wajib upon him to carry out the act of ibaadah which he had vowed
    to carry out. If he does not fulfil this vow, he will be committing a great sin.
    However, if a person takes a useless vow which has no basis in the
    Shariah, it will not be wajib on him to fulfil such a vow. Vows of
    this sort will be mentioned later.

  2. A person says: “O Allah! If a certain task is
    fulfilled, I will keep five fasts for Your pleasure.” Once this task of his is
    fulfilled, he will have to keep these five fasts. But if the task is not
    fulfilled, he will not have to keep these fasts. If the person merely said that
    he will keep five fasts, he has the choice of keeping them continuously one
    after the other, or of keeping them separately. But if he said that he will keep
    five fasts continuously or had this intention in his heart, he will have to keep
    them one after the other. If he misses out one or two fasts in between, he will
    have to start all over again.

  3. If the person says that he will fast on Friday or
    that he will fast from the 1st till the 10th of Muharram, then it is not
    necessary for him to fast specifically on a Friday or specifically on those days
    of Muharram. He could keep these 10 fasts whenever he wishes irrespective
    of whether he keeps them in Muharram or in any other month. The only
    condition is that he should keep them continuously. Similarly, if he says: “If
    this work of mine is fulfilled today, I will fast tomorrow”, he has the choice
    of fasting whenever he wishes.

  4. While taking a vow, a person said: “I will keep the
    fasts of the month of Muharram.” He will now have to keep fasting
    continuously in the entire month of Muharram. If he misses a few fasts in
    between, he will have to keep them after the month of Muharram. He does
    not have to keep all the fasts all over again. He also has the choice of fasting
    in any other month. It is not necessary for him to fast in Muharram. The
    only condition is that he has to keep these fasts continuously without missing
    any.

  5. A person takes a vow that if he finds a certain item
    which he lost, he will offer eight rakaats of salaat. Upon finding his
    lost item, he will have to offer eight rakaats of salaat. He has the
    choice of making the intention of offering all eight rakaats at once,
    offering four rakaats at a time or offering two rakaats at a time.
    And if he took a vow of offering four rakaats, then he will have to offer
    all four with one salaam. If he offers two rakaats at a time, his
    vow will not be fulfilled.

  6. A person took a vow of offering one rakaat.
    He will have to offer two rakaats. And if he took a vow of offering three
    rakaats, he will have to offer four rakaats of salaat. And if he
    took a vow of offering five rakaats, he will have to offer six
    rakaats. In this way, he will have to continue adding one more
    rakaat if he vows to offer an odd number of rakaats.

  7. A person takes a vow that he will give R10 in
    charity. He will therefore have to give whatever he has vowed to give. If a
    person took a vow of giving R50 in charity, and at that time he only had R10, he
    will only have to give R10. However, if he has some other possessions apart from
    the R10, we will have to establish the value of the other possessions. For
    example, a person has R10 in cash and the value of the other possessions equals
    R15. His total wealth now adds up to R25. He will therefore have to give R25 in
    charity. It is not wajib on him to give more than this.

  8. A person takes a vow that he will feed 10 poor
    persons. If he had it in his mind that he will feed them one meal or two meals,
    he will have to feed them according to what he had intended. But if he did not
    have anything in his mind, he will have to feed them two meals. If he had taken
    a vow that he will give them some dry groceries, the same rule as above will
    apply. That is, if he had it in his mind that he will give each person a certain
    amount, then he will have to give them that amount. But if he did not specify
    any amount or did not even have it in his mind, then he will have to give each
    person the amount that one is required to give as sadaqatul
    fitr
    .

  9. If a person takes a vow that he will give bread to
    the value of R1, he has the choice of giving the bread, some other food to the
    value of R1 or he could give R1 in cash.

  10. A person took a vow of giving R10 in charity on the
    basis that he will give 10 poor persons R1 each. However, instead of giving the
    charity in this manner, he gave R10 to one poor person. This is also
    permissible. It is not wajib upon him to give R1 to each poor person. It
    will also be permissible for him to distribute R10 among 20 poor persons. If he
    takes a vow that he will give R10 to 10 poor persons, he still has the choice of
    giving 10 persons, less than 10 persons or more than 10 persons.

  11. If a person takes a vow that he will feed 10
    persons who are regular with their salaat or 10 persons who have memorized the
    Quran, he can feed 10 poor persons irrespective of whether they are regular with
    their salaat or not, and irrespective of whether they have memorized the Quran
    or not.

  12. A person takes a vow that he will give R10 as
    charity in Makkah. It is not wajib on him to give this charity in Makkah,
    he can give it wherever he wishes. If a person takes a vow that he will give
    charity on Friday to a particular poor person, it is not necessary for him to
    give it on Friday or to that particular poor person whom he had in mind.
    Similarly, if he sets aside some money and vows to give that very money as
    charity, it is not necessary that he gives exactly that money which he had set
    aside. He could give some other money as long as the amount is the
    same.

  13. Similarly, if a person takes a vow that he will
    offer salaat in the jumu’ah musjid or in Makkah, he has the choice of
    offering his salaat wherever he wishes.

  14. A person takes a vow that if his brother is cured,
    he will slaughter a goat or give the meat of a goat in charity. In such a case,
    the vow will be valid. If he takes a vow that he will make a qurbaani, he
    will have to slaughter the goat during the days of qurbaani. In all these
    cases, the meat will have to be given to the poor. He cannot consume it himself
    nor can he give it to any rich persons. If he does this, he will have to repeat
    the charity.

  15. A person had taken a vow of making qurbaani
    of one bull. However, he could not obtain a bull. In such a case, he should
    slaughter seven goats.

  16. A person took a vow that once his brother arrives
    he will give R10 in charity. However, the moment he heard that his brother is
    about to arrive (but had not arrived as yet), this person gave R10 in charity.
    In this case, his vow will not be fulfilled. Once his brother actually arrives,
    he will have to give R10 again in charity.

  17. A person takes a vow for the fulfilment of a
    certain hope or wish. For example, he says: “If I am cured from this sickness, I
    will do such and such a thing”, “If my brother reaches home safely, I will do
    such and such a thing”, “If my father wins the court case or obtains employment,
    I will do such and such a thing”. Once this hope or wish of his is fulfilled, he
    must fulfil his vow.

  18. A person says: “If I speak to you, I will fast for two
    days”, or, “If I do not offer my salaat today, I will give R1 in charity.”
    Thereafter, this person either spoke or did not offer his salaat. In such a
    case, the person has the choice of either paying the kaffarah for
    breaking the vow, fasting for two days or giving R1 in charity.

  19. A person takes a vow that he will recite durood
    shareef
    1000 times or the kalimah 1000 times. Once his vow is
    fulfilled, it will be wajib upon him to recite the durood or the
    kalimah. But if a person takes a vow of reciting Sub’haanallah
    1000 times or reciting La hawla wa la quwwata 1000 times, this vow will
    not be valid and it will not be wajib on him to recite these forms of
    zikr.

  20. A person takes a vow that he will complete 10
    recitations of the Quran or complete the recitation of one chapter of the Quran.
    In both cases the vow will be valid.

  21. A person takes a vow that if a certain task of his
    is fulfilled, he will hold a “meelad” celebration, or that he will go and
    spread a sheet on the grave of a certain pious person. In both cases, the vow
    will not be valid. Similarly, if a person vows to make an offering at the grave
    of a certain saint, to make an offering of sweetmeats in the musjid, to place a
    lighted lamp in the musjid as an offering or to hold a “giyarweeh”
    celebration of a certain saint, etc. then in all these cases the vow will not be
    valid and it will not be wajib to fulfil such vows.

  22. Fasting in reverence of Maula Mushkil Kusha
    or to vow to implement the rituals of Konda are all baseless customs.
    Fasting in reverence of Maula Mushkil Kusha amounts to
    shirk.

  23. A person takes a vow of renovating a certain musjid
    or building a certain bridge. Vows of this nature are not valid and it is not
    wajib to fulfil them.

  24. A person takes a vow that if his brother recovers
    from his sickness, he will organize a dance or a music show. Taking a vow of
    this sort is sinful and it will not be permissible to fulfil it once his brother
    recovers from his sickness.

  25. It is not permissible to take a vow in the name of
    anyone other than Allah Ta’ala. For example, a person says to his spiritual
    guide: “If a certain task of mine is fulfilled, I will do such and such a thing
    for you”, or a person goes to graves, or places that are inhabited by
    jinns and makes certain requests over there. All these acts are
    haraam and constitute shirk. In fact, it is even haraam to
    consume the food that has been prepared for such acts. As regards women visiting
    graves, strict prohibitions in this regard have been mentioned in the Hadith.
    Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has cursed such
    women.

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