Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Am I exempt from fasting?

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.

Today's Ramadan related topic is on deferred and exemption from fasting.

Fasting is compulsory for every sane Muslim who has attained puberty. It is one of the five pillars of Islam, and once you are able to do so, you are required to fast - it is obligatory.

However, in Islam, we believe that Allah swt never puts us through anything that He Knows we won't be able to get through. And with fasting, it is no exception - He has laid down some rules as to who is and is not obligated to fast, depending on their condition.

Deferred fasting, i.e. fasting at a later date, is permitted for the following groups of people:

    Pregnant women on medical grounds - this is an obvious one, because it would harm her child.
     Breastfeeding mothers - only if as a result of fasting her or her child's health suffers.

     Women who are menstruating - in Islam when women are on their period, we are prohibited from praying, fasting, and touching the Holy Qu'ran, as women are considered unclean in that state. Also, fasting and doing our five daily prayers on top of period pain/cramps would be too much for us to handle; another way Allah swt has shown how Compassionate and Merciful He is!

It makes me thankful that he allows us to relax and relieves us from our religious duties while we curl up with a hot water bottle >.<

 Aishah (ra) said: “When we had our periods at the time of the Prophet, we were ordered to compensate for fasting but not for prayers.”
(Related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)

     The young - although they are encouraged to fast so they are prepared for when they are obligated to when older (obviously here we are talking about kids 9+ not little children, and also the parents should know whether or not fasting will affect their childs health adversely and act appropriately).
     A person who is not of sound mind, e.g. the insane or someone mentally handicapped - again, this is obvious. It is unjust to make them do so.

“But he who is ill or on a journey shall fast instead the same number of days later on.” (The Holy Qur'an 2:185).

     A traveller on a journey of three or more days - the intent of this and the above verse is to not add any further hardship upon the person that is already taking up the hardship that comes with travelling for an extended period of time.
     A person whose health is likely to deteriorate as a result of fasting - once they have recovered and are not in any danger of getting worse if they fast, then they must make up their missed fasts immediately.
     Someone who is temporarily ill  - be it from a fever, a really bad cough, the flu.

But what if I can't make up my fasts later - what do I do then?

Well then you have to make up for it by paying to charity the equivalent of a meal for every fast missed. Type of food to be given as compensation should be:

     a regular, proper meal that they can eat, for example if red meat is part of a regular meal for you, you should give that as charity.
     If however, red meat is a luxury for you, then you should not give that, because you should only give what you can afford - yes you should give your due but that does not mean you should overdo it - you have to take care of your family and self also.
     Depending on where you are planning on giving the charity, it will vary from culture to culture - another thing to keep in mind. I don't think someone who lives on chapattis or rice would appreciate your donner kebab. Ahem.
     In regards to who you should give your charity to, you can feed various people, or feed one person many times, or a whole family a few times, as long as you make up for your fasts, that's all that matters.

The elderly (for obvious reasons), and the permanently ill (such as someone with diabetes, cancer, TB, terminally ill, etc.) fall into this category.

“Do not kill yourselves. God is compassionate to you.”
(The Holy Qur'an 4:29)

If someone fasts when they are unwell, in spite of his illness and bears the burden of fasting, his fast may be valid but his/her action is not commendable; God has granted him concession and has ignored His Mercy. God doesn't want you to strain yourself - He'll understand you know, He isn't called the Just Lord for nothing you know! >.<

Anyway, In Shaa Allah/God Willing this helped anyone out there who were unsure about anything regarding whether or not they should be fasting, or if you're a non Muslim and wanted to know just in general! 

Everything good in this post is from Allah swt, and any & all mistakes are mine.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. I found your blog through the blog hop! Honestly I was attracted to it because of the name! So cute! Lovely Blog!! :)

    1. Haha thanks m'dear :-D Followed back! xoxo

  3. is it that time of the month for me, so i have not been fasting. ramzan mubarak, great blog btw :)


    1. aha aww. I feel for you sis. Khair mubarak, & to you too! Thankyou :) xxx