- Question: If a man eats or drinks while he is observing a supererogatory fast, what does he have to do? And what is the ruling with regard to someone who has sexual intercourse out of forgetfulness while peforming an obligatory fast?
Answer: With regard to drinking and eating out of forgetfulness, there is no difference between the obligatory and the supererogatory fasts. And it is as the Prophet, (صلى الله علیه وسلم), said:
"...Indeed it is only Allaah who has fed him and given him to drink."
As for having sexual intercourse out of forgetfulness, then I cannot imagine it occurring between two spouses. I can imagine it occurring with respect to one of the two spouses, who is immersed in heedlessness, but what is the condition of the other spouse, regardless of whether it is a male or a female?
Therefore, I must assume that this question is with regard to it occurring to one of the two spouses. So based on this, if we were to say that one of them is forgetful while the other is taking advantage of this forgetfulness (from his/her mate), then the one who is forgetful, there is no difference between his eating, his drinking and his having sexual intercourse (in that it is out of forgetfulness). As for the one who remembers and is aware, then he must perform the great expiation (Kafaara). [Al-Asaalah, Issue #7]
- Question: Is it permissible to distribute the Zakaat-ul-Fitr a few days or a week before its appointed time?
Answer: This is not permissible because it goes against the wisdom that the Divine Legislator has intended from the distributing of the Zakaat-ul-Fitr. Thus, He wants the poor to be given sufficient means to prevent them from begging on the Day of ‘Eed. So if it is distributed before the day of ‘Eed by a week’s length or more than that, there is no doubt that it's objective will vanish as a result of this action. This is because the poor person will benefit from the charity that he receives on these days. But when the Day of ‘Eed comes, it is likely that he will again be needy and poor.
And this is especially since the reason behind the ruling on this matter has been mentioned in the texts as “a purification for the one who fasted.” And this can not be except at the end of the month of fasting. So the goal of the Divine Legislator is not to suffice the poor person from begging during the month of Ramadaan, but rather to suffice him from begging and asking on the Day of ‘Eed.
Furthermore, it is possible, with some tolerance, to allow the person giving charity to give his Zakaat a day or two before ('Eed) due to present-day circumstances and the remoteness of the areas (he wishes to send his Zakaat to). Concerning this, there are authentic narrations on some of the Companions stating that they used to be lenient (with the Zakaat by accepting it) a day or two in advance. [Al-Asaalah, Issue #16]
- Question: A pregnant woman did not fast for the first half of Ramadaan acting on the allowance for that found in the hadeeth:
"Verily, Allaah has discarded the fast from the pregnant and breast-feeding woman."
And she did this with the intention that there is no recompense (i.e. making up the missed days) due upon her but rather just Fidyah (feeding poor or hungry people) according to the fatwaa of Ibn 'Abbaas, (رضي الله عنهما). But then she (gave birth and) began her (postpartum) bleeding in the second half of the month of Ramadaan, and she was forbidden from fasting during the length of her bleeding. So is she obligated to make up for the days she missed fasting due to the bleeding? And what if she considers herself as a breast-feeding woman during the period of her bleeding. Does her having to make up for missed days (Qadaa) become removed from her, based on the previous hadeeth?
Answer: If it is agreed that she became a breast-feeding woman with her (postpartum) bleeding, then the answer is the same as when she discarded the fast when she was pregnant. There is no Qadaa (recompense - making up missed days) due upon her, but rather just Fidyah (feeding people). [Al-Asaalah, Issue #16]
- Question: A woman has to make up some missed days of fasting for the past Ramadaan because she was in menstruation (at that time). But now she is pregnant and the next Ramadaan is coming soon and she is not able to make up for her missed days until after the coming month of Ramadaan has passed. So what should she do?
Answer: If a woman is able to make up for missed days of Ramadaan that are binding upon her, after Ramadaan, then (the rule is that) she can skip the fast (in Ramadaan) and make it up afterward. But this means that she is obligated to make it up right away. What is important is that she frees herself from her responsibility of this obligation. But suppose, for example, she dies before fulfilling this responsibility. In this case, she is to request in her Will that which will expiate her from this burden. And the expiation is considered as proceeds in cases such as these.
In the event that she is neither pregnant nor breast-feeding and she misses some days of Ramadaan because of her menstruation, then she is obligated to make up for these lost days (Qadaa). And if (after this), she is followed by pregnancy and then breast-feeding, it is permitted for her to delay the Qadaa (making up of the missed days). But she should then make up the missed days (later) without doing the Fidyah (feeding of poor people) or the Kafaarah (expiation). [Al-Asaalah, Issue #16]
Author: Shaikh Muhammad Naasirud-Deen al-Albaanee
Source: al-Asaalah Magazine Issues 1-21
Translator: Abu Maryam Isma’eel Alarcon
Questions on Ramadaan and Fasting