Sixty Questions on Rulings Related to Menstruation and Post-Partum Bleeding

Description

A book translated into English provides answers to questions about menstruation and postpartum bleeding regarding three acts of worship: Prayer, fasting, pilgrimage, and umrah.

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Sixty Questions on Rulings Related to Menstruation and Post-Partum Bleeding

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In the Name of Allah, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful.

Introduction

Praise be to Allah, and may Allah's peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad, his family, his Companions, and those who follow them with righteousness untill the Day of Judgment.

O Muslim sister!

Since scholars receive many queries on rulings pertaining to menstruation in connection to acts of worship, we decided to list the frequently asked questions concisely for the sake of brevity.

O Muslim sister!

Given the importance of having good understanding of the religion, we collected these questions for you to have an easy access thereto, and to worship Allah based on sure knowledge.

Notice: On browsing the book for the first time, some questions may seem repeated, but on contemplating the answers, it will be clear that there is additional information in some answers, apart from others, which we liked to highlight.

May Allah's peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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Some rulings on menstruation in relation to prayer and fasting

Question no.1:

A woman attained purity from menses right after dawn. Should she refrain from eating and drinking, as well as other invalidators of fast, and fast on that day so that it will be considered a day of valid fast for her, or would she have to make up for that day?

Answer no.1:There are two scholarly opinions regarding the case of a woman who attains purity from menses right after dawn:

First opinion: She is required to fast for the rest of that day, even though it will not be counted for her as a day of valid fast. Making up for that day is obligatory for her as per the famous opinion of Imam Ahmad's School of Fiqh.

Second opinion: She is not required to fast for the rest of the day, since it is not valid to fast on such a day where she was menstruating at its beginning. Hence, refraining from acts that invalidate the fast is pointless here. Moreover, she is obligated under Shariah to refrain from fasting at the beginning of that day, rather, it is prohibited for her to do so when she was still in menstruation, so it was not a time she had to show veneration to by keeping away from fast invalidators.

According to Shariah, fasting is to refrain from all acts that invalidate the fast, as an act of worship to Allah Almighty, since the break of dawn till sunset.

As you see, this opinion is more preponderant than the other that suggests she is required to fast for the rest of the day. Both opinions, however, make it obligatory for her to make up for that day.

Question no.2:

A woman attained purity from menses and performed Ghusl (ritual bath) after Fajr prayer. Then, she offered the prayer, and fasted the rest of the day. Is it obligatory for her to make up for that day?

Answer no.2:

If a woman attains purity from menses before dawn, even one minute before dawn, and she is sure of being pure, she is required to fast on that day if it is during the month of Ramadān. Her fast is valid in this case, and she is not required to make up for the fast, because she fasted it when she was pure from menses, even though she took a bath after the break of dawn.

Likewise, if a man is in a state of Janābah (sexual impurity) due to sexual intercourse or a wet dream, then he has the Suhūr (pre-dawn) meal, but he does not take a bath until after the break of dawn, his fast is valid.

Here, I would like to stress another point in this regard. Some women who have their menstruation after having fasted the day in full, yet before offering the 'Ishā' prayer, believe that their fast is invalidated due to that.

This is baseless. In fact, if she has her menses even one moment after sunset, her fast is complete and valid.

Question no.3:Is it obligatory for a woman experiencing her post-partum bleeding to fast and pray if she becomes pure before the completion of forty days?Answer no.3:Yes. Once a woman becomes pure of post-partum bleeding, it is obligatory for her to fast, if this happens in Ramadān. She is required to pray as well, and her husband may have sexual intercourse with her (after sunset), because she is ritually pure, and there is nothing that prevents her from fasting, offering the prayer or having sexual intercourse with her husband.Question no.4:A woman usually experiences menstruation for eight or seven days per month. Yet, it happens that once or twice her menses lasts a bit longer. What is the relevant ruling?Answer no.4:If a woman has her menses for six or seven days in average, yet sometimes it lasts longer, such as eight, nine, ten, or eleven days, then she must refrain from prayer until she becomes pure.This is because the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) did not fix a specific limit for the menstruation period.Moreover, Allah Almighty says: {And they ask you about menstruation. Say: “It is harm..."} [Al-Baqarah: 222]So, as long as a woman is experiencing menstrual bleeding, the relevant rulings apply to her until she becomes pure and makes Ghusl, in which case she has to pray. If in the following month, her menses lasts for a shorter period, she makes Ghusl once she becomes pure, even if the two periods are not the same.

What counts here is that as long as a woman is experiencing menstruation, she should not offer the prayer, regardless of whether the days of menstruation are more or less than what she usually experiences thereof. As soon as she becomes pure, she has to offer the prayers.

Question no.5:Is a woman experiencing post-partum bleeding required to refrain from prayer and fasting for forty days, or what counts is the cessation of the blood flow? What is the least period of bleeding after which she becomes pure?Answer no.5:There is no fixed limit for post-partum bleeding; rather, as long as there is bleeding, a woman should refrain from praying, fasting, or having sexual intercourse with her husband.

If she attains purity, even before forty days of bleeding, be it after ten or five days of bleeding, then she has to pray, fast, and her husband may have sexual intercourse with her. She is not blamed for any of that.

Post-partum bleeding is a tangible matter, to which many rulings are attached. Hence, whenever there is such a bleeding, its rulings apply, and once a woman is pure thereof, its rulings no longer apply.

However, if the bleeding lasts for more than sixty days, this is considered Istihādah (vaginal bleeding outside menstruation and post-partum bleeding). In this case, a woman has to refrain from praying, fasting, and having sexual intercourse with her husband for as many days as equals her menstruation period. Then, she makes Ghusl and prays.

Question no.6:A woman experiences bleeding during daytime the whole month of Ramadān in the form of little drops. She maintained the fast for the whole month. Is her fast valid?Answer no.6:Yes, her fast is valid. These drops are of no effect, since they come out of veins. It is reported from 'Ali ibn Abi Tālib (may Allah be pleased with him) that he said: “These drops are like nosebleed. They are not menstruation."Question no.7:A woman experiencing menstrual or post-partum bleeding becomes pure before dawn, yet she does not make Ghusl until after dawn. Is her fast valid?Answer no.7:Yes, when a menstruating woman becomes pure before dawn, but she makes Ghusl after the break of dawn, her fast is valid. The same applies to a woman experiencing post-partum bleeding because fasting becomes obligatory for her. She is similar to one in the state of Janābah, since his fast is deemed valid even he delays Ghusl until after the break of dawn.This is supported by Allah's saying: {...So now, have relations with them and seek that which Allah has decreed for you. And eat and drink until the white thread of dawn becomes distinct to you from the black thread [of night]...} [Al-Baqarah: 187]Since Allah Almighty permits sexual intercourse until the break of dawn, this entails that Ghusl would be made after the break of dawn. 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) reported that the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) would rise in the morning while in the state of Janābah, due to sexual intercourse with his wives before dawn, and he would observe fast on that day.This means that he (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) did not make Ghusl from Janābah until it was morning time.Question no.8:If a woman feels the menstrual blood, yet it does not come out before sunset, or she feels the menstrual pain, is her fast on that day valid, or she is required to make up for it?Answer no.8:If a fasting woman feels menstrual blood moving inside the vagina, yet it does not come out until after sunset, or she feels menstrual pain, but the blood does not come out until after sunset, her fasting on that day is valid. She is not required to make up for it if it is an obligatory fast. If it is a voluntary fast, the reward is not canceled either.Question no.9:A woman saw blood, yet she was not sure it was menstruation. What is the ruling on her fast on that day?Answer no.9:Her fast on that day is valid, because, in principle, menstruation is established only by certainty.Question no.10:Sometimes a woman finds simple traces or spotting of blood that come out at intervals along the hours of the day. This may take place around the time her menses is due, without it being discharged, and other times this occurs outside the time of her menses. What is the ruling on her fasting in both cases?Answer no.10:We have just answered a similar question. Yet, we may add that if such blood drops come out at the time of her menses, and she can recognize it to be menstrual blood, then it is menstruation.Question no.11:Can a woman who is experiencing menstruation or post-partum bleeding eat and drink during daytime in Ramadān?Answer no.11:Yes. A woman may eat and drink during daytime in Ramadān in these two cases. However, she may do that secretly if she has children at home, since this may cause them confusion.Question no.12:A woman attained purity from menses or post-partum bleeding at 'Asr (afternoon) time. Is it due upon her to offer the Zhuhr (noon) prayer along with 'Asr, or is she required to offer the 'Asr prayer only?Answer no.12:The preponderant opinion in this issue is that it is due upon her to offer the 'Asr prayer only, due to the unavailability of a proof obligating her to offer the Zhuhr prayer. Freedom from liability is the basic rule The Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said:“Whoever catches only one Rak'ah (basic unit of prayer) of the 'Asr prayer before sunset is considered to have caught the 'Asr prayer (he has not missed it)."The Hadīth does not state that one in this case has caught up with the Zhuhr prayer. If it was obligatory to pray Zhuhr, this would have been clarified by the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him). Another proof is that if a woman has her menses after Zhuhr time, she is required to make up for the Zhuhr prayer only, even though Zhuhr and 'Asr are combined together. This case is not different from that in question.

Hence, the preponderant opinion here is that such a woman is required to pray 'Asr only, based on the indication of the text and by way of analogy. This applies also when she attains purity before the time of 'Ishā' prayer has elapsed, since, in this case, she is required to pray 'Ishā' only, and the Maghrib prayer is not due upon her.

Question no.13:There are two cases for women who go through abortion: either the abortion occurs before the fetus is formed, or after it is formed. What is the ruling on her fasting of the day the abortion takes place, as well as the days where she detects blood?Answer no.13:If the fetus is not yet formed, then the blood is not considered post-partum bleeding. So, she can fast and pray and her fasting is valid.

If the fetus is formed, the blood is considered post-partum bleeding, therefore, it is not permissible for her to pray or fast.

The criterion or rule regarding this issue is that if the fetus is formed, the blood is post-partum bleeding, and if the fetus is not formed, the blood is not post-partum bleeding. If it is the first case, the woman is prohibited to do all that which is prohibited by post-partum bleeding, otherwise she is not.

Question no.14:Is the fasting of a pregnant woman affected by blood discharged during daytime in Ramadān?Answer no.14:If menstrual blood comes out when a woman is fasting, her fast is invalidated as per the statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him):“Is it not true that when she menstruates, she does not pray or fast?"Accordingly, menstruation is considered one of the nullifiers of fast, and the same applies to post-partum bleeding; they both invalidate the fast.

If menstrual blood comes out of a pregnant woman during daytime in Ramadān, then she is treated the same as a non-pregnant woman, that is, the blood invalidates her fast. If, however, the blood is not caused by menstruation, then her fast is not affected.

Menstruation in case of pregnancy is that which occurs regularly since the beginning of pregnancy at its usual time. This is considered menstruation according to the preponderant opinion in this regard, and all the rulings of menstruation apply.

However, if the blood ceases to flow, then it comes back, not in the manner she used to experience during her menses, then this blood does not affect her fast because it is not menstrual blood.

Question no.15:What should a woman do if she sees blood during her menstruation period on some day, but on the following day she sees no blood at all?Answer no.15:It seems that the dryness she experiences is part of her menstruation period. It is not, therefore considered purity. She must refrain from everything a menstruating woman is prohibited from.Some scholars also said: “If it happens that a woman sees blood on some day, and dryness on the other, then the blood is considered menstruation, and the dryness is purity, so long as this does not reach fifteen days.After fifteen days, the discharge of blood is considered Istihādah." This is the famous opinion of Ahmad ibn Hanbal's School of Fiqh.Question no.16In the last days of the menstruation period, and before attaining purity, a woman may not see any traces of blood. Should she fast on that day although she does not see the white vaginal discharge that marks purity?Answer no.16:If she is not accustomed to seeing the white vaginal discharge, as in the case of some women, then she has to fast. However, if she habitually sees the white vaginal discharge, then she refrains from fasting until she sees it.Question no.17:What is the ruling on reading or memorizing the Qur'an during menstruation or post-partum bleeding out of necessity, such as the case of a student or a teacher?Answer no.17:There is nothing wrong with reciting the Qur'an for a woman in her menstruation or post-partum bleeding provided that there is a need for that, such as being a teacher, or a student who needs to recite the Qur'an for the sake of study.

However, reciting the Qur'an seeking reward should better be avoided at such times since many scholars, or most of them, maintain that a woman is not permitted to recite the Qur'an during her menstruation period.

Question no.18:Is it required that a woman changes her clothes after attaining purity from menses, knowing that they are not affected by blood or any impurity?Answer no.18:She is not required to do that because menstruation does not render the body impure. In fact, menstrual blood renders impure whatever it soils only. Therefore, the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) commanded women, whose clothes were affected by menstrual blood, to wash them then pray in them.Question no.19:A woman did not fast seven days in Ramadān due to post-partum bleeding. She did not make up for them until the next Ramadān, where she failed to fast for seven days due to breastfeeding. She did not make up for those days either, claiming that she suffered an illness. What is she required to do since the third Ramadān is approaching? Please advise, may Allah reward you.Answer no.19:If a woman truly suffers an illness that prevents her from making up for the missed days of fast, then she has to fast them once she becomes able to, because she has a valid excuse under Shariah not to fast, even if the next Ramadān comes.If, however, she has no excuse and is taking the matter lightly and carelessly, then she is not permitted to delay making up for the missed days of fast until the coming of the next Ramadān.'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: “I used to have missed days of fast to make up for, but I could not do so except during the month of Sha'bān."

Accordingly, the woman in question should consider her situation, if she has no excuse, then she is sinful and has to repent to Allah Almighty. She has to hasten to make up for the missed days of fast. But, if she has a valid excuse, then she is blameless, even if she delays making up for the missed days of fast for one or two years.

Question no.20:Some women would receive Ramadān while they have not yet made up for the missed days of fast of the previous Ramadān. What is due upon them?Answer no.20:They have to repent to Allah Almighty because it is impermissible for someone who missed some days in Ramadān to delay making up for them without a valid excuse until the following Ramadān. 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: “I used to have missed days of fast to make up for, but I could not do so except during the month of Sha'bān."

This indicates that it is not permissible to delay making up for the missed days of fast until the following Ramadān. So, the woman in such a case should turn to Allah Almighty in repentance for what she has done, and make up for the missed days after the following Ramadān ends.

Question no.21:If a woman has her menses at 1:00 pm, and she has not yet offered the Zhuhr prayer, is she required to make up for it after she attains purity from menses?Answer no.21:Scholars have different opinions concerning this issue. Some of them say that it is not due upon her to make up for that prayer because she did not leave it out of negligence. She bears no sin for that because it is permissible to delay the prayer until the end of its prescribed time.Other scholars say that she has to make up for that prayer based on the general indication of the words of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him):“He who catches up with one Rak'ah of a prayer has indeed caught up with that prayer (he has not missed it)."

It is safer for her to make up for it, since it is only one prayer that causes no hardship when offered.

Question no.22:Should a pregnant woman who sees blood discharge one or two days before delivery refrain from fasting and offering prayer?Answer no.22:If a pregnant woman finds blood discharge one or two days ahead of delivery, while she feels the pain of labor, then this blood is considered post-partum bleeding, for which she refrains from praying and fasting. If the blood discharge is not associated with labor pain, then it is irregular bleeding that entails no ruling. It does not prevent her from fasting or offering the prayer.Question no.23:What is your view on taking pills to prevent the menstrual cycle so as to fast with the people on the month of Ramadān?Answer no.23:I warn against such procedure since these pills involve a huge risk. I made sure of that by consulting doctors on that issue. A woman should know that menstruation is something decreed by Allah, with which she should be content. She should fast when there is no impediment, and refrain when there is, out of acceptance of Allah's decree.Question no.24:After attaining purity from post-partum bleeding that continued for two months, a woman finds little drops of blood. Should she stop fasting and praying?Answer no.24:Problems related to menstruation and post-partum bleeding are countless because of using contraceptive pills and pills for delaying menstruation. In the past, people did not go through many of such confusing issues.Actually, such problems existed since the beginning of the mission of Allah's Messenger (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him), or even since women were first created. However, it is sad to see such problems increasing in such a way that leaves one so confused.In principle, when a woman is sure that she has attained purity from menses or post-partum bleeding, by seeing the white vaginal discharge that marks the end of bleeding, then whatever is emitted thereafter, being a brownish or yellowish discharge, a drop of blood or just dampness, then all this is not menstruation and does not prevent her from offering the prayer, fasting or having sexual intercourse with her husband because it is not menstruation anyway.Umm 'Atiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: “We would not consider the yellowish and brownish discharge to be anything (related to menses)." [Narrated by Al-Bukhāri] The narration of Abu Dāwūd, whose chain of narrators is authentic, adds: “after attaining purity."Based upon this, we hold that all such issues that a woman experiences after attaining purity do not count. She may normally pray, fast, and have sexual intercourse with her husband. Nevertheless, she should wait until she attains purity for sure,because some women would hasten to make Ghusl before being sure of purity.That is why the female Companions used to send cotton pieces soiled with blood to 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) who would say to them: "Do not be hasty, wait until you see the white discharge."Question no.25:Some women would experience uninterrupted flow of menstrual blood, and sometimes it stops for one or two days, then it flows again. What is the ruling concerning fasting, offering the prayer, and other acts of worship in such a case?Answer no.25:According to many scholars, a woman who experiences menstruation should make Ghusl after her menstruation period is over. Then, she offers the prayer and fasts. Any blood she sees two or three days after purity is not menstruation, because the least period of purity is thirteen days according to them.

Other scholars, however, said that any blood she sees is considered menstruation, and whenever it stops she becomes pure, even though the period between the two menstrual cycles are less than thirteen days.

Question no.26:Is it better for a woman to pray in Ramadān nights at her home or at the mosque, especially that there are lessons and admonition given there? What is your advice to women who pray at mosques?Answer no.26:It is better for her to pray at her home based on the general indication of the statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him):“To pray at their homes is better for them."That is because women going out of their homes mostly involve temptation, so a woman staying at her home is better than her going out for the prayer in the mosque. The lessons and admonition can be obtained through audio tapes.

My advice to those women who pray at the mosque is to get out of their homes without exposing their adornment or wearing perfume.

Question no.27:What is the ruling on tasting the food during daytime in Ramadān by a fasting woman?

Answer no.27:

There is nothing wrong with tasting the food because it is needed, yet she has to spit it out once she tastes it.

Question no.28:A woman in her early pregnancy was injured in an accident and lost the fetus due to severe bleeding. Is it permissible for her not to fast? If she does, will she be sinful for that?

Answer no.28:

A pregnant woman does not experience menstruation. Imam Ahmad said: “Pregnancy is detected by the absence of menstruation." According to Muslim scholars, menstruation is created by Allah as a means of nutrition for the fetus in his mother's womb. When a woman is pregnant she does not menstruate.

Some women, however, may continue to experience menstruation during pregnancy just as they used to before it. This case is considered true menstruation to which all relevant rulings should apply.

In sum, blood discharged during pregnancy is of two types:

1- Menstrual blood: if it continues after pregnancy in the same way it used to be before it, which means that pregnancy has no effect on it.

2- Accidental blood that may be caused by an injury, carrying heavy objects, falling down and the like. This is not menstrual blood, rather it is blood that comes out of veins.Hence, blood in case as in the question does not prevent the woman from praying or fasting, as she is considered in a state of ritual purity.

But, if the injury results in losing the pregnancy, then, according to Muslim scholars, the blood is considered post-partum bleeding if the fetus is already formed as a human being. In this case, she has to refrain from offering the prayer, fasting, and having sexual intercourse with her husband until she attains purity.

If the fetus is not yet formed, then it is not post-partum bleeding, but it is caused by injury. Then, it does not prevent her from offering the prayer or fasting or whatever else.

Muslim scholars stated that the minimum period of formation of the fetus in its mother's womb is 81 days.They based their view on the Hadīth where Ibn Mas'ūd (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allah (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) - the truthful and the receiver of the truth - said to us: 'Every one of you is collected in the womb of his mother for forty days in the form of a drop of semen; then it becomes a clot of blood in a similar period; then it becomes a lump of flesh in a similar period; then Allah sends an angel who breathes life into it; and he is commanded to record four things about it: its sustenance, its term of life, its deeds; and whether it will be happy or miserable.'"Formation is not possible before that period. Some Muslim scholars even argue that formation cannot be obviously recognized before 90 days.Question no.29:A year ago, I miscarried my three-month-old pregnancy. I did not offer the prayer until I was pure. I was told that I had to pray in those days. What should I do? I do not know the number of days exactly.Answer no.29:Muslim scholars hold that when a woman undergoes miscarriage after three months of pregnancy, it is not due upon her to pray, because by that time, the fetus is already formed. Accordingly, the blood that she discharges is post-partum bleeding that prevents her from praying.

Scholars stated: “The formation of the fetus can be detected after 81 days", which is less than three months. If the woman is sure that the miscarriage occurred when her pregnancy was three months old, then the blood is due to a disorder, and therefore, she should not leave the prayer on its account.

The woman in question has to remember well; if the miscarriage occurred before the pregnancy completed 80 days, then she would have to make up for the prayers. But, what if she cannot recall how many prayers she missed?She has to estimate the number of prayers as much accurately as she can and make up for the prayers that she most probably believes she actually missed.Question no.30:A woman says that she has been observing the fast of Ramadān since she attained puberty, but she does not make up for the days of fast she misses on account of menstruation, and because she does not know the number of the days of fast she missed. What is your advice to her?Answer no.30:It is saddening to know that this happens among believing Muslim women, i.e. failing to make up for the obligatory days of fast they missed, either due to ignorance or negligence. This is a disaster in both cases, because ignorance can be removed by seeking knowledge and inquiry,whereas negligence is overcome by fearing Allah Almighty, being mindful of Him, fearing His punishment, and hastening to do whatever pleases Him.

Accordingly, the woman in question has to repent to Allah of what she has done, and seek His forgiveness. She has to do her best as to estimate accurately the number of days she missed and make up for them, thereby clearing her liability. We hope that Allah would accept her repentance.

Question no.31:What is the ruling regarding a woman who has her menses after the time of prayer has been due, does she have to make up for that prayer once she attains purity? What if she becomes pure before the time of prayer has elapsed?Answer no.31:First: If a woman has her menses after the prayer becomes due, then she will have to make up for this prayer after she attains purity, that is if she did not offer it before she had her menses.This is supported by the statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him):“He who catches up with one Rak'ah of a prayer has indeed caught up with the whole prayer (he has not missed it)."So, if a woman has her menses shortly before the time of prayer elapses, i.e. has enough time to offer one Rak'ah, then she has to pray it once she attains purity from menses, in case she has not prayed it before having her menses.Second: If she becomes pure from menses before the time of prayer elapses, then she has to make up for that prayer. For example, if she becomes pure only quite a short time that is enough to offer one Rak'ah before sunrise, she has to make up for the Fajr prayer.The same applies if she becomes pure shortly before sunset, where she is required to make up for the 'Asr prayer.The case is also the same if she becomes pure shortly before midnight, where she is required to make up for the 'Ishā' prayer.If she attains purity after midnight, she is not required to make up for the 'Ishā' prayer. But she has to pray Fajr when its time is due.Allah Almighty says: {...But when you become secure, re-establish [regular] prayer. Indeed, prayer has been decreed upon the believers a decree of specified times.} [Al-Nisā': 103]As obvious, the verse stresses that obligatory prayers are to be offered at their fixed times. It is impermissible to delay the prayer beyond its prescribed time or advance it before it is due.

Question no.32:

I had my menses when I was offering the prayer, what do I have to do? Should I make up for the prayers I miss during the menstruation period?

Answer no.32:If a woman experiences menstruation after the time of prayer has become due, for example, she has her menstruation 30 minutes after noon time, then she has to make up for such prayer (i.e. Zhuhr prayer) after she becomes pure from menses.Allah Almighty says: {...Indeed, prayer has been decreed upon the believers at specified times} [Al-Nisā': 103]Prayers missed during the menstruation period are not to be made up for, based on the lengthy Hadīth where the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said:“Is it not true that when she menstruates, she does not pray or fast?"Muslim scholars unanimously agreed that a woman is not required to make up for the prayers she misses during her menstruation period.However, if she becomes pure when there is still time enough to perform one Rak'ah or more of the prayer, then she has to make up for the prayer during which she attained purity. In confirmation, the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said:“Whoever catches only one Rak'ah of the 'Asr prayer before sunset, is considered to have caught the 'Asr prayer (he has not missed it)."If she attains purity from menses during the time of the 'Asr prayer, and there is enough time to perform one Rak'ah before sunset, then she has to make up for the 'Asr prayer. Similarly, she has to make up for the Fajr prayer if she becomes pure before sunrise, and there is enough time to perform one Rak'ah before sunrise.Question no.33:My mother is 65 years old, and it has been now 19 years since she has last given birth to children. However, she has been suffering from continuous vaginal bleeding for about 3 years. It seems that it is due to an illness that afflicted her during that period. Now that the month of Ramadān is approaching, what is your advice to her concerning fasting?Answer no.33:The ruling on this case is that such a woman should refrain from praying and fasting for the same period her menses used to last before that illness afflicted her. That is, if she used to have her menses for the first six days of the month, for example, then she has to stop praying and fasting on the first six days of every month. After the six days are over, she makes Ghusl, prays and fasts.

This woman, and others who suffer the same case, has to wash her private parts thoroughly, tie up a band tightly to her vagina, and perform ablution. This should be done after the time of each prayer becomes due,as well as for supererogatory prayers if she wishes to pray.

Due to the hardship that results from such a case, a woman is permitted to combine Zhuhr prayer with 'Asr prayer, and combine Maghrib prayer with 'Ishā' prayer, so that she follows the procedures stated above once for a couple of prayers: once for Zhuhr and 'Asr together,once for Maghrib and 'Ishā' together, and once for Fajr prayer. So, instead of doing that five times a day, she only has to do it three times a day.I say again: when such a woman needs to be in a state of ritual purity, she has to wash her private parts, tie up a band tightly to her vagina to block the flow of blood, then she makes ablution. After that, she prays four Rak'ahs for Zhuhr, four Rak'ahs for 'Asr, three Rak'ahs for Maghrib, four Rak'ahs for 'Ishā' and two Rak'ahs for Fajr. This is to emphasize that the prayers are not to be shortened in this case as mistakenly believed by lay people.But, she is permitted to join Zhuhr and 'Asr prayers, and Maghrib and 'Ishā' prayers, either in the time of the former or the time of the latter. She can offer supererogatory prayers as well with that same ablution.Question no.34:What is the ruling on a menstruating woman attending religious lectures and sermons at the Sacred Mosque?Answer no.34:It is impermissible for a menstruating woman to stay at the Sacred Mosque or any other mosque. She is only permitted to pass through a mosque for fetching something or the like.Once the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) ordered 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with him) to bring him a Khumrah [1]. She answered that it was in the mosque and that she was having her menses. He (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said to her: “Your menstruation is not in your hand."So, there is nothing wrong with a menstruating woman who passes through the mosque, provided that she is sure that no blood would affect the mosque by her passing through it.

Yet, entering the mosque and staying therein is not permissible for her.

This view is supported by the Hadīth where the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) ordered the women to go out for the Eid prayer, including the mature, virgin, and menstruating women, but he ordered the menstruating women to stay away from the praying area.This indicates that a menstruating woman is not permitted to stay at the mosque for the purpose of listening to sermons or lessons.

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Some rulings on ritual purity in relation to prayer

Question no.35:Is the white or yellow fluid that a woman discharges pure or impure? Does it entail ablution, noting that it is discharged continuously? What if it is not continuous? Most women, especially those who have knowledge among them, consider it normal vaginal moisture that does not entail ablution.Answer no.35:Based on research and investigation, it seems to me that the fluid discharged from women is pure provided that it comes from the uterus, not the bladder. Yet, it invalidates the ablution, despite its being pure, because impurity is not a condition for ablution invalidators. For example, passing wind, which has no mass, from the anus invalidates the ablution.

Is the white or yellow fluid that a woman discharges pure or impure? Does it entail ablution, noting that it is discharged continuously? What if it is not continuous? Most women, especially those who have knowledge among them, consider it normal vaginal moisture that does not entail ablution.

Answer no.35:

Based on research and investigation, it seems to me that the fluid discharged from women is pure provided that it comes from the uterus, not the bladder. Yet, it invalidates the ablution, despite its being pure, because impurity is not a condition for ablution invalidators. For example, passing wind, which has no mass, from the anus invalidates the ablution.

Accordingly, if this fluid emits from a woman who has performed ablution, her ablution is invalidated and she has to renew it.

If it is permanently discharged, it does not invalidate ablution, but the woman has to perform ablution for each prayer when its time is due. She can pray the obligatory prayer whose time is already due, along with supererogatory prayers, recite the Qur'an, and other permissible acts.Muslim scholars hold the same view concerning those who suffer urinary incontinence. In conclusion, the fluid referred to in question is pure, but it invalidates ablution unless it is permanently discharged. In that case, it does not invalidate ablution, but the woman has to perform ablution only when the prayer's time becomes due. She also has to tie up a pad to her private parts.

Muslim scholars hold the same view concerning those who suffer urinary incontinence. In conclusion, the fluid referred to in question is pure, but it invalidates ablution unless it is permanently discharged. In that case, it does not invalidate ablution, but the woman has to perform ablution only when the prayer's time becomes due. She also has to tie up a pad to her private parts.

But if it comes out and stops, and it usually stops at the time of prayer, then she should delay the prayer until the time it stops, unless she is afraid she may miss the prayer. If she fears that she will miss the prayer, then she should make ablution, use a pad and pray.

It makes no difference whether it is little or much, because it is all coming from the front passage, so it invalidates ablution in principle, regardless of its quantity. Fluids that come from other body parts like blood and vomit, do not invalidate ablution, regardless of their amount.

The fact that some women believe that this fluid does not invalidate ablution has no origin in Shariah except a view of Ibn Hazm (may Allah have mercy upon him) assuming that it does not invalidate ablution, but it lacks proof as well. If this view had been supported by any proof from the Qur'an, Sunnah, or the Companions' statements, then it would have stood as conclusive argument on this issue.

A Muslim woman has to fear Allah and observe her state of purity carefully, because prayer is not accepted without purity, even though she prays a hundred times. Some Muslim scholars even argue that the one who prays without being in a state of ritual purity is a disbeliever, because his action features disrespect of the verses of Allah, may He be Exalted and Glorified.

Question no. 36Is it valid for a woman who continually experiences discharge of fluid to pray as many supererogatory prayers as she likes and recite the Qur'an with that same ablution she performed for the obligatory prayer whose time was due, until the time of the following obligatory prayer becomes due?Answer no.36:If she performs ablution for the obligatory prayer at the beginning of its due time, she can pray the obligatory prayer, supererogatory prayers, and recite the Qur'an until the following obligatory prayer becomes due.Question no.37:Is it valid for that woman to perform the Duha (forenoon) prayer with the same ablution of the Fajr prayer?Answer no.37:No, this is invalid because the Duha prayer has a specific time, so she has to perform ablution after its time becomes due. This is so because such a woman is like a woman who has Istihādah (vaginal bleeding outside menstruation). It is known that the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) ordered a woman who experienced Istihādah to perform ablution for each prayer.

Is it valid for a woman who continually experiences discharge of fluid to pray as many supererogatory prayers as she likes and recite the Qur'an with that same ablution she performed for the obligatory prayer whose time was due, until the time of the following obligatory prayer becomes due?

Answer no.36:

If she performs ablution for the obligatory prayer at the beginning of its due time, she can pray the obligatory prayer, supererogatory prayers, and recite the Qur'an until the following obligatory prayer becomes due.

Question no.37:

Is it valid for that woman to perform the Duha (forenoon) prayer with the same ablution of the Fajr prayer?

Answer no.37:

No, this is invalid because the Duha prayer has a specific time, so she has to perform ablution after its time becomes due. This is so because such a woman is like a woman who has Istihādah (vaginal bleeding outside menstruation). It is known that the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) ordered a woman who experienced Istihādah to perform ablution for each prayer.

The time of Zhuhr starts from Zawāl time (the time when the sun starts to decline from its zenith in the middle of the sky and move towards the west) up to 'Asr time.

The time of 'Asr starts by the elapse of Zhuhr time until the sun becomes yellow. In times of necessity, it could extend to sunset.

The time of Maghrib starts from sunset until the disappearance of the red twilight.

The time of 'Ishā' starts from the disappearance of the red twilight until midnight.

Question no.38Is it valid for such a woman to offer voluntary night prayer with the ablution of 'Ishā' prayer, when half of the night has passed?Answer no.38:No, if half of the night has passed, she would have to renew her ablution. Another opinion suggests that she does not have to, and it is the predominant one.Question no.39:What is the latest time when 'Ishā' prayer can be performed? How can it be identified?Answer no.39:The latest time for offering 'Ishā' prayer is midnight. It is identified by dividing the time between sunset and the break of dawn into two halves. The time of 'Ishā' prayer elapses by the end of the first half. The second half of the night is not a time for a prescribed prayer, it is just a passage between 'Ishā' and Fajr.Question no.40:A woman experiences discontinuous discharge of vaginal fluid. After she had performed ablution, and before she offered the prayer, the fluid was discharged. What is she required to do?Answer no.40:If the discharge of fluid is not continual, she has to wait until the time when it stops. But, if it comes out sometimes and stops sometimes on no regular basis, then she has to perform ablution when the time of prayer is due, then she offers the prayer. There is nothing due upon her beyond that.Question no.41:What is she required to do with spots of her body or clothes that are affected by that fluid?Answer no.41:If it is pure, nothing is due upon her, but if it is impure, coming from the bladder, then she has to wash it away.Question no.42:In case ablution is needed, is it sufficient to wash the body parts that are to be washed in ablution?

Is it valid for such a woman to offer voluntary night prayer with the ablution of 'Ishā' prayer, when half of the night has passed?

Answer no.38:

No, if half of the night has passed, she would have to renew her ablution. Another opinion suggests that she does not have to, and it is the predominant one.

Question no.39:

What is the latest time when 'Ishā' prayer can be performed? How can it be identified?

Answer no.39:

The latest time for offering 'Ishā' prayer is midnight. It is identified by dividing the time between sunset and the break of dawn into two halves. The time of 'Ishā' prayer elapses by the end of the first half. The second half of the night is not a time for a prescribed prayer, it is just a passage between 'Ishā' and Fajr.

Question no.40:

A woman experiences discontinuous discharge of vaginal fluid. After she had performed ablution, and before she offered the prayer, the fluid was discharged. What is she required to do?

Answer no.40:

If the discharge of fluid is not continual, she has to wait until the time when it stops. But, if it comes out sometimes and stops sometimes on no regular basis, then she has to perform ablution when the time of prayer is due, then she offers the prayer. There is nothing due upon her beyond that.

Question no.41:

What is she required to do with spots of her body or clothes that are affected by that fluid?

Answer no.41:

If it is pure, nothing is due upon her, but if it is impure, coming from the bladder, then she has to wash it away.

Question no.42:

In case ablution is needed, is it sufficient to wash the body parts that are to be washed in ablution?

Answer no.42:

Yes. It is sufficient to do so if it is pure, i.e. when it comes from the uterus not the bladder.

Question no.43:

Why is there not any report from the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) indicating that ablution is invalidated by the discharge of this fluid, even though the female Companions were keen on seeking Fatwa concerning religious matters?

Answer no.43:This is because the discharge of such fluid is not commonly experienced by all women.Question no.44:As for women who did not perform ablution on account of the discharge of that fluid due to their ignorance of the ruling, what are they required to do?Answer no.44:They have to repent to Allah and ask people who have knowledge of such matters.Question no.45:Some people say that you hold the opinion that it is not obligatory to perform ablution on account of that vaginal discharge of fluid.Answer no.45:They do not say the truth. Perhaps they have mistakenly understood that it does not entail ablution when I described it as pure.Question no.46:What is the ruling on the brownish discharge that a woman experiences a day, or maybe more or less than that, before menstruation. It comes out in the form of tiny black or brown traces. What is the ruling if it comes after menstruation?Answer no.46:It takes the same rulings as menstrual blood if it is a prior sign thereof. It could be identified by the menstrual cramps that a menstruating woman usually experiences.

This is because the discharge of such fluid is not commonly experienced by all women.

Question no.44:

As for women who did not perform ablution on account of the discharge of that fluid due to their ignorance of the ruling, what are they required to do?

Answer no.44:

They have to repent to Allah and ask people who have knowledge of such matters.

Question no.45:

Some people say that you hold the opinion that it is not obligatory to perform ablution on account of that vaginal discharge of fluid.

Answer no.45:

They do not say the truth. Perhaps they have mistakenly understood that it does not entail ablution when I described it as pure.

Question no.46:

What is the ruling on the brownish discharge that a woman experiences a day, or maybe more or less than that, before menstruation. It comes out in the form of tiny black or brown traces. What is the ruling if it comes after menstruation?

Answer no.46:

It takes the same rulings as menstrual blood if it is a prior sign thereof. It could be identified by the menstrual cramps that a menstruating woman usually experiences.

As for the emission of brownish discharge after menstruation, a woman has to wait until it stops, because it is considered part of menstruation as long as it is attached to it. 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said concerning this issue: “Do not be hasty (in performing Ghusl), wait until you see the white vaginal discharge (marking the end of menses)." Allah knows best.

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Some rulings on menstruation in relation to Hajj and 'Umrah

Question no.47:How should a menstruating woman offer the two Rak'ahs of Ihrām (ritual state of consecration)? Is it permissible for such a woman to recite verses of the Qur'an secretly?Answer no.47:First: We have to know that there is no specific prayer for Ihrām, because it was not narrated from the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) that he prescribed any prayer for his Ummah for Ihrām, neither through his words, deeds, or approval.Second: A woman who has her menses before assuming Ihrām can still do so during her menstruation period.That is because the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) commanded Asmā' bint 'Umays, the wife of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with both of them), when she was bleeding following childbirth in Dhul-Hulayfah, to make Ghusl and tie up her private parts with a cloth and assume Ihrām. The same applies to the menstruating woman. She should stay in Ihrām until she becomes pure from menses, then she has to make Tawāf (circumambulating the Ka'bah) and Sa'y (walking rapidly back and forth between the Mounts of Safa and Marwah).

How should a menstruating woman offer the two Rak'ahs of Ihrām (ritual state of consecration)? Is it permissible for such a woman to recite verses of the Qur'an secretly?

Answer no.47:

First: We have to know that there is no specific prayer for Ihrām, because it was not narrated from the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) that he prescribed any prayer for his Ummah for Ihrām, neither through his words, deeds, or approval.

Second: A woman who has her menses before assuming Ihrām can still do so during her menstruation period.

That is because the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) commanded Asmā' bint 'Umays, the wife of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with both of them), when she was bleeding following childbirth in Dhul-Hulayfah, to make Ghusl and tie up her private parts with a cloth and assume Ihrām. The same applies to the menstruating woman. She should stay in Ihrām until she becomes pure from menses, then she has to make Tawāf (circumambulating the Ka'bah) and Sa'y (walking rapidly back and forth between the Mounts of Safa and Marwah).

As for reciting the Qur'an, it is permissible for a menstruating woman to recite the Qur'an when there is necessity or need. If this is not the case, rather she wants to recite it only as an act of worship through which she seeks closeness to Allah, then it is better for her not to recite it.

Question no.48:

A woman traveled for Hajj and had her menses five days after the journey had started. Upon reaching the Miqāt (place where pilgrims assume Ihrām), she made Ghusl and assumed Ihrām, although she did not attain purity from menses. When she arrived at Makkah, she remained outside the Mosque and did nothing of the rituals of Hajj and 'Umrah. She stayed two days in Mina, then she attained purity from menses, made Ghusl, and performed all the rituals of 'Umrah while in a state of purity. When she was performing the Tawāf of Ifādah (Pouring Forth Tawāf) for Hajj, she experienced bleeding once more, yet she felt shy and carried on performing the rituals. Due to her shyness, she did not inform her guardian about that except after they arrived home. What is the ruling on that?

Answer no.48:If what she experienced while performing the Tawāf of Ifādah was menstrual bleeding, which she recognized from its nature and the cramps that usually accompany it, then her Tawāf is invalid. She has to return to Makkah to perform it again. She has to assume Ihrām from the Miqāt, perform 'Umrah with a Tawāf and Sa'y, shorten her hair, then perform the Tawāf of Ifādah.

If what she experienced while performing the Tawāf of Ifādah was menstrual bleeding, which she recognized from its nature and the cramps that usually accompany it, then her Tawāf is invalid. She has to return to Makkah to perform it again. She has to assume Ihrām from the Miqāt, perform 'Umrah with a Tawāf and Sa'y, shorten her hair, then perform the Tawāf of Ifādah.

If it was not like the normal menstrual blood, but a discharge of blood caused by crowdedness or stress, then her Tawāf is valid according to those who do not consider ritual purity a condition for the validity of Tawāf.

If it is beyond her ability to return to Makkah as per the first case, being a resident of a faraway country, then her Hajj is valid because she lacks the ability to do anything more than what she had done.

Question no.49:A woman, who had assumed Ihrām for 'Umrah, arrived at Makkah where she started her menstruation after arriving there. Her Mahram (spouse or unamrriageable relative) has to travel immediately, and she has no relative living in Makkah to stay with. What is the ruling on this case?Answer no.49:She should travel with him, and maintain her state of Ihrām, then she should return to Makkah when she attains purity. This is if she is a resident of the KSA, because it will be easy for her to return without incurring any hardship, and she will be in no need for a passport or the like.

A woman, who had assumed Ihrām for 'Umrah, arrived at Makkah where she started her menstruation after arriving there. Her Mahram (spouse or unamrriageable relative) has to travel immediately, and she has no relative living in Makkah to stay with. What is the ruling on this case?

Answer no.49:

She should travel with him, and maintain her state of Ihrām, then she should return to Makkah when she attains purity. This is if she is a resident of the KSA, because it will be easy for her to return without incurring any hardship, and she will be in no need for a passport or the like.

However, if she is not a resident of the KSA and it is difficult for her to return, then she has to tie up a pad to her private parts, perform Tawāf and Sa'y, shorten her hair and end her 'Umrah on the same journey. That is because performing Tawāf has become a case of necessity for her, and necessity makes permissible what is originally forbidden.

Question no.50:What is the ruling concerning a Muslim woman whose menses started while she was performing Hajj? Is her Hajj valid?Answer no.50:We cannot answer this question before we know when exactly her menses started. In fact, some of the rituals of Hajj can be performed by a menstruating woman, while others cannot. For example, Tawāf is valid only in the state of ritual purity, unlike all other rituals, which can be performed by menstruating women.Question no.51:I performed Hajj last year. I performed all the rituals apart from the Tawāf of Ifādah and the Tawāf of Wadā' (Farewell Tawāf) on account of a Shariah-approved excuse. I returned to my home in Madinah, intending that I would go back to Makkah one day to perform both Tawāfs. Due to my ignorance of such religious issues, I ended my Ihrām and did all things that were prohibited on account of it. I asked about the validity of my return to Makkah to perform the missed Tawāfs, but I was told that it is invalid for me to make Tawāf because I had invalidated my Hajj, and so I have to repeat my Hajj all over again in the next year, and slaughter a cow or a camel there. Is this true? Is there another solution? And what is it? Was my Hajj invalidated? Do I have to repeat it? Please advise, may Allah bless you.Answer no.51:This is another example of the bad consequences of giving Fatwa without knowledge! Now, you have to return to Makkah and perform the Tawāf of Ifādah only.It is not due upon you to perform the Farewell Tawāf given the fact that you had your menstruation when you departed Makkah, and a menstruating woman is not required to perform the Farewell Tawāf.Ibn ' Abbās (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) reported: “People were commanded to let Tawāf around the Ka'bah be the last thing they do, but an exception was made for menstruating women."According to a narration of Abu Dāwūd: “People were commanded to let Tawāf be the last thing they do at the Ka'bah."Another proof is that when the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) was informed that Safiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) had performed the Tawāf of Ifādah, he said: “Let her depart then."This indicates that a menstruating woman is exempted from performing the Farewell Tawāf.Nonetheless, you are surely required to perform the Tawāf of Ifādah. But, since you ended your Ihrām out of ignorance, there is no sin on your part. That is because there is no sin upon whoever does something that is prohibited under the state of Ihrām ignorantly.Allah Almighty says: {...Our Lord, do not impose blame upon us if we have forgotten or erred...} [Al-Baqarah: 286]In reply, Allah Almighty said: “I approve this."Allah Almighty also says: {And there is no blame upon you for that in which you have erred but [only for] what your hearts intended...} [Al-Ahzāb: 5]Hence, one who does any of the acts that are prohibited on account of Ihrām due to ignorance or forgetfulness or under coercion is pardoned. But, whenever his excuse is removed, he has to refrain from doing such acts.Question no.52:A woman started her post-partum bleeding on the day of Tarwiyah (8th of Dhul-Hijjah) and completed all the pillars of Hajj with the exception of Tawāf and Sa'y. Then she noticed primary signs of purity after ten days. Should she purify herself, make Ghusl and perform the remaining pillar, which is the Tawāf of Hajj (the Tawāf of Ifādah)?Answer no.52:It is impermissible for her to make Ghusl and perform Tawāf until she is certain that she has attained purity. It is understood from the question when she says “primary signs" that she did not attain full purity. Whenever she attains full purity, she has to purify herself, make Ghusl, and perform Tawāf and Sa'y.

What is the ruling concerning a Muslim woman whose menses started while she was performing Hajj? Is her Hajj valid?

Answer no.50:

We cannot answer this question before we know when exactly her menses started. In fact, some of the rituals of Hajj can be performed by a menstruating woman, while others cannot. For example, Tawāf is valid only in the state of ritual purity, unlike all other rituals, which can be performed by menstruating women.

Question no.51:

I performed Hajj last year. I performed all the rituals apart from the Tawāf of Ifādah and the Tawāf of Wadā' (Farewell Tawāf) on account of a Shariah-approved excuse. I returned to my home in Madinah, intending that I would go back to Makkah one day to perform both Tawāfs. Due to my ignorance of such religious issues, I ended my Ihrām and did all things that were prohibited on account of it. I asked about the validity of my return to Makkah to perform the missed Tawāfs, but I was told that it is invalid for me to make Tawāf because I had invalidated my Hajj, and so I have to repeat my Hajj all over again in the next year, and slaughter a cow or a camel there. Is this true? Is there another solution? And what is it? Was my Hajj invalidated? Do I have to repeat it? Please advise, may Allah bless you.

Answer no.51:

This is another example of the bad consequences of giving Fatwa without knowledge! Now, you have to return to Makkah and perform the Tawāf of Ifādah only.

It is not due upon you to perform the Farewell Tawāf given the fact that you had your menstruation when you departed Makkah, and a menstruating woman is not required to perform the Farewell Tawāf.

Ibn ' Abbās (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) reported: “People were commanded to let Tawāf around the Ka'bah be the last thing they do, but an exception was made for menstruating women."

According to a narration of Abu Dāwūd: “People were commanded to let Tawāf be the last thing they do at the Ka'bah."

Another proof is that when the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) was informed that Safiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) had performed the Tawāf of Ifādah, he said: “Let her depart then."

This indicates that a menstruating woman is exempted from performing the Farewell Tawāf.

Nonetheless, you are surely required to perform the Tawāf of Ifādah. But, since you ended your Ihrām out of ignorance, there is no sin on your part. That is because there is no sin upon whoever does something that is prohibited under the state of Ihrām ignorantly.

Allah Almighty says: {...Our Lord, do not impose blame upon us if we have forgotten or erred...} [Al-Baqarah: 286]

In reply, Allah Almighty said: “I approve this."

Allah Almighty also says: {And there is no blame upon you for that in which you have erred but [only for] what your hearts intended...} [Al-Ahzāb: 5]

Hence, one who does any of the acts that are prohibited on account of Ihrām due to ignorance or forgetfulness or under coercion is pardoned. But, whenever his excuse is removed, he has to refrain from doing such acts.

Question no.52:

A woman started her post-partum bleeding on the day of Tarwiyah (8th of Dhul-Hijjah) and completed all the pillars of Hajj with the exception of Tawāf and Sa'y. Then she noticed primary signs of purity after ten days. Should she purify herself, make Ghusl and perform the remaining pillar, which is the Tawāf of Hajj (the Tawāf of Ifādah)?

Answer no.52:

It is impermissible for her to make Ghusl and perform Tawāf until she is certain that she has attained purity. It is understood from the question when she says “primary signs" that she did not attain full purity. Whenever she attains full purity, she has to purify herself, make Ghusl, and perform Tawāf and Sa'y.

It is permissible for her to perform Sa'y before Tawāf, as the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) was asked about performing Sa'y before Tawāf and said that it is permissible to do so.

Question no.53:A woman assumed Ihrām for Hajj from As-Sayl and she had her menses then. After reaching Makkah, she went to Jeddah for some need, where she attained purity, performed Ghusl, combed her hair and completed her Hajj. Is her Hajj valid? Is there anything due upon her?Answer no.53:Her Hajj is valid, and there is nothing due upon her.Question no.54:I went to perform 'Umrah and passed by the Miqāt when I had my menses, so I did not assume Ihrām there. I stayed in Makkah until I became pure and then assumed Ihrām from there. Is this permissible? What should I do?Answer no.54:This is not permissible. A woman who intends to perform 'Umrah is not permitted to go beyond the Miqāt without assuming Ihrām even if she is having her menses. Instead, she has to assume Ihrām while menstruating, and her Ihrām is valid and effective.This is supported by the report that Asmā' bint 'Umays (may Allah be pleased with her), the wife of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him), gave birth to her child when the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) was at Dhul Hulayfah on his way to perform the Farewell Hajj. She sent asking the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) about what she had to do. He (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Make Ghusl, tie up your private parts with a cloth, and assume Ihrām."Since menstrual bleeding is the same as post-partum bleeding,therefore, any menstruating woman who passes by the Miqāt, while intending to perform 'Umrah or Hajj, should make Ghusl, tie a cloth to her private parts, then assume Ihrām.It is necessary to tie a pad or towel tight to her private parts before assuming Ihrām for Hajj or 'Umrah. But, when she arrives at Makkah, she must not go to the Ka'bah or make Tawāf around it until she becomes pure.That is why the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said to 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) when she had her menses during 'Umrah: “Do all the rites that are due upon a pilgrim, but do not make Tawāf around the Ka'bah until you become pure." This is the narration of Al-Bukhāri and Muslim.It is also reported in a Hadīth in Sahīh Al-Bukhāri that 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) mentioned that she performed Tawāf and Sa'y after she had become pure from menses.This proves that if a woman assumes Ihrām for Hajj or 'Umrah while menstruating, or if her menses starts before making Tawāf, then she must delay the performance of Tawāf and Sa'y until she becomes pure and makes Ghusl.

A woman assumed Ihrām for Hajj from As-Sayl and she had her menses then. After reaching Makkah, she went to Jeddah for some need, where she attained purity, performed Ghusl, combed her hair and completed her Hajj. Is her Hajj valid? Is there anything due upon her?

Answer no.53:

Her Hajj is valid, and there is nothing due upon her.

Question no.54:

I went to perform 'Umrah and passed by the Miqāt when I had my menses, so I did not assume Ihrām there. I stayed in Makkah until I became pure and then assumed Ihrām from there. Is this permissible? What should I do?

Answer no.54:

This is not permissible. A woman who intends to perform 'Umrah is not permitted to go beyond the Miqāt without assuming Ihrām even if she is having her menses. Instead, she has to assume Ihrām while menstruating, and her Ihrām is valid and effective.

This is supported by the report that Asmā' bint 'Umays (may Allah be pleased with her), the wife of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him), gave birth to her child when the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) was at Dhul Hulayfah on his way to perform the Farewell Hajj. She sent asking the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) about what she had to do. He (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Make Ghusl, tie up your private parts with a cloth, and assume Ihrām."

Since menstrual bleeding is the same as post-partum bleeding,

therefore, any menstruating woman who passes by the Miqāt, while intending to perform 'Umrah or Hajj, should make Ghusl, tie a cloth to her private parts, then assume Ihrām.

It is necessary to tie a pad or towel tight to her private parts before assuming Ihrām for Hajj or 'Umrah. But, when she arrives at Makkah, she must not go to the Ka'bah or make Tawāf around it until she becomes pure.

That is why the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said to 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) when she had her menses during 'Umrah: “Do all the rites that are due upon a pilgrim, but do not make Tawāf around the Ka'bah until you become pure." This is the narration of Al-Bukhāri and Muslim.

It is also reported in a Hadīth in Sahīh Al-Bukhāri that 'Ā'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) mentioned that she performed Tawāf and Sa'y after she had become pure from menses.

This proves that if a woman assumes Ihrām for Hajj or 'Umrah while menstruating, or if her menses starts before making Tawāf, then she must delay the performance of Tawāf and Sa'y until she becomes pure and makes Ghusl.

But if she performed Tawāf while in the state of purity, then her menses starts, she has to go on with the rituals, perform Sa'y, shorten her hair, and end her 'Umrah because purity is not a condition for making Sa'y between the Safa and Marwah.

Question no.55:I came from Yanbu' with my family to perform 'Umrah. My wife started her menses upon our arrival at Jeddah, so I performed 'Umrah alone without her. What is the ruling concerning her situation?Answer no.55:The ruling is that she has to stay there until she becomes pure, then perform her 'Umrah.The Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said about Safiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) when she had her menses during Hajj: “Is she going to prevent us from departing?" They replied: “She performed the Tawāf of Ifādah." So, he (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Let her depart then."The statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) indicates that it is obligatory for a woman whose menses starts before she performs the Tawāf of Ifādah to stay in until she becomes pure and performs it.

I came from Yanbu' with my family to perform 'Umrah. My wife started her menses upon our arrival at Jeddah, so I performed 'Umrah alone without her. What is the ruling concerning her situation?

Answer no.55:

The ruling is that she has to stay there until she becomes pure, then perform her 'Umrah.

The Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said about Safiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) when she had her menses during Hajj: “Is she going to prevent us from departing?" They replied: “She performed the Tawāf of Ifādah." So, he (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) said: “Let her depart then."

The statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) indicates that it is obligatory for a woman whose menses starts before she performs the Tawāf of Ifādah to stay in until she becomes pure and performs it.

The same ruling applies to the Tawāf of 'Umrah, because it is a pillar thereof. Hence, a woman whose menses starts before she performs Tawāf in 'Umrah has to wait until she becomes pure and performs it then.

Question no.56:Is the Mas'a (area where pilgrims perform Sa'y between the Safa and Marwah) part of the Sacred Mosque? Can a menstruating woman enter it? Is it obligatory for someone who enters the Sacred Mosque from the Mas'a to offer the Mosque-Greeting prayer?Answer no.56:It seems that the Mas'a is not part of the Sacred Mosque, therefore, a wall was built to separate them, but it is a low wall. Undoubtedly, it is better for people, because if the Mas'a were to be incorporated into the Mosque and made part of it, a woman whose menses starts after doing Tawāf and before doing Sa'y would not be able to do Sa'y.

Is the Mas'a (area where pilgrims perform Sa'y between the Safa and Marwah) part of the Sacred Mosque? Can a menstruating woman enter it? Is it obligatory for someone who enters the Sacred Mosque from the Mas'a to offer the Mosque-Greeting prayer?

Answer no.56:

It seems that the Mas'a is not part of the Sacred Mosque, therefore, a wall was built to separate them, but it is a low wall. Undoubtedly, it is better for people, because if the Mas'a were to be incorporated into the Mosque and made part of it, a woman whose menses starts after doing Tawāf and before doing Sa'y would not be able to do Sa'y.

My Fatwa here is that if a woman's menses starts after doing Tawāf and before doing Sa'y, she should still do Sa'y, because the Mas'a is not considered to be part of the Mosque.

With regard to offering the Mosque-Greeting prayer, it may be said that if one does Sa'y after Tawāf and then goes back to the Mosque, then he should pray it, but if he does not pray it, there is no blame on him.It is better, however, to make the most of this opportunity and pray these two Rak'ahs, given the virtue of praying in this place.Question no.57:I performed Hajj and I had my menses there. As I was too shy to tell anyone about that, I entered the Sacred Mosque, prayed there and performed Tawāf and Sa'y. What should I do? Please note that I had my menses after I had ended my post-partum bleeding.Answer no.57:It is impermissible for a woman who is experiencing menstruation or post-partum bleeding to pray, whether in Makkah or her home country or any place whatsoever.This is supported by the statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him): “Is it not true that when she menstruates she does not pray or fast?"Moreover, Muslims unanimously agree that it is not lawful for a menstruating woman to fast or pray.

It is better, however, to make the most of this opportunity and pray these two Rak'ahs, given the virtue of praying in this place.

Question no.57:

I performed Hajj and I had my menses there. As I was too shy to tell anyone about that, I entered the Sacred Mosque, prayed there and performed Tawāf and Sa'y. What should I do? Please note that I had my menses after I had ended my post-partum bleeding.

Answer no.57:

It is impermissible for a woman who is experiencing menstruation or post-partum bleeding to pray, whether in Makkah or her home country or any place whatsoever.

This is supported by the statement of the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him): “Is it not true that when she menstruates she does not pray or fast?"

Moreover, Muslims unanimously agree that it is not lawful for a menstruating woman to fast or pray.

So, the woman in question has to repent to Allah and seek His forgiveness for what she did.

The Tawāf she performed during her menstruation period is invalid, unlike the Sa'y, which is valid. According to the preponderant scholarly opinion, it is permissible to perform Sa'y before Tawāf in Hajj. Therefore, she has to repeat the Tawāf because the Tawāf of Ifādah is one of the pillars of Hajj, without which the final termination of Ihrām cannot be done.

Based on that, the husband of the woman in question cannot have sexual intercourse with her, if she is married, until she performs Tawāf. In case she is unmarried, her marriage contract should not be concluded until she performs Tawāf. Allah knows best.

Question no.58:What should a woman whose menses starts on the Day of 'Arafah do?Answer no.58:A woman whose menses starts on the Day of 'Arafah should proceed with doing the rituals of Hajj just like all the pilgrims, but she has to delay the performance of Tawāf until she becomes pure from menses.Question no.59:A woman had her menses started after throwing Jamrat Al-'Aqabah and before performing the Tawāf of Ifādah, she and her husband are with a group. What should she do, noting that she will not be able to come back to Makkah after she departs it?Answer no.59:If it will not be possible for her to come back later, then she has to apply a pad tightly to her private parts and perform the Tawāf of Ifādah due to necessity, and she bears no sin. Then, she has to carry on doing the rest of the Hajj rituals.Question no.60:Is the Hajj of a woman whose post-partum bleeding has stopped before completing 40 days valid? If she does not see the signs of purity, what should she do? She has already intended to make Hajj.Answer no.60:If a woman attains purity from post-partum bleeding before the completion of 40 days, she has to make Ghusl, pray, and do all the acts that are done by women in a state of purity, including Tawāf. That is because there is no minimum limit for the post-partum bleeding period.However, if she does not see the signs of purity, her Hajj is still valid, but she should not make Tawāf until she becomes pure,since the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) forbade menstruating women from making Tawāf around the Ka'bah, and post-partum bleeding is the same as menstruation in this regard.

What should a woman whose menses starts on the Day of 'Arafah do?

Answer no.58:

A woman whose menses starts on the Day of 'Arafah should proceed with doing the rituals of Hajj just like all the pilgrims, but she has to delay the performance of Tawāf until she becomes pure from menses.

Question no.59:

A woman had her menses started after throwing Jamrat Al-'Aqabah and before performing the Tawāf of Ifādah, she and her husband are with a group. What should she do, noting that she will not be able to come back to Makkah after she departs it?

Answer no.59:

If it will not be possible for her to come back later, then she has to apply a pad tightly to her private parts and perform the Tawāf of Ifādah due to necessity, and she bears no sin. Then, she has to carry on doing the rest of the Hajj rituals.

Question no.60:

Is the Hajj of a woman whose post-partum bleeding has stopped before completing 40 days valid? If she does not see the signs of purity, what should she do? She has already intended to make Hajj.

Answer no.60:

If a woman attains purity from post-partum bleeding before the completion of 40 days, she has to make Ghusl, pray, and do all the acts that are done by women in a state of purity, including Tawāf. That is because there is no minimum limit for the post-partum bleeding period.

However, if she does not see the signs of purity, her Hajj is still valid, but she should not make Tawāf until she becomes pure,

since the Prophet (may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) forbade menstruating women from making Tawāf around the Ka'bah, and post-partum bleeding is the same as menstruation in this regard.

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[1] Khumrah: a rug used by the praying person to prostrate on.

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