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 Is Fasting Valid without Praying?

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PostSubject: Is Fasting Valid without Praying?   Sun Jul 24, 2011 12:29 pm




The Relationship between Fasting and Prayer

Question:

Some Muslim scholars criticize those who observe fasting, but do not maintain the prescribed daily prayers. What is the relationship between fasting and prayer? I want to fast to be entitled to the reward of the fasting people. I know that, "Fasting Ramadaan, then fasting next Ramadaan will abrogate all sins committed in between." Please explain.


Answer

By: Allamah Muhammad Ibn Salih al-Uthaimeen (rahimahullah)

"Those who criticize you for fasting and not maintaining the daily-prescribed prayers are right. Prayer is a main pillar of Islam. The person who purposefully neglects the daily-prescribed prayers is declared a non-Muslim, denying the right of His Lord, Allah the Almighty. This person will not be entitled to the rewards of fasting, charity, pilgrimage or anything else. This is based on the verse of the Holy Qur'aan, "And nothing prevents their contributions from being accepted from them except that they disbelieved in Allah and in His Messenger; and that they came not to as-Salaat (the prayer) except in a lazy state, and that they offer not contributions but unwillingly." [Soorah Tawbah (9): 54]

Thus, if one fasts, but does not maintain the prescribed daily prayers, this will render his fasting null. Such a person will not benefit from fasting. As for the misconception you have, concerning fasting (alone) will abrogate the sins committed between two Ramadaans; (then) you should understand that the true meaning of this Hadeeth of Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam). The statement reported by Muslim is as follows, "Maintaining the five daily prescribed prayers, maintaining the prayer of Friday, to the second Friday prayer, and fasting the month of Ramadaan, to the next month of Ramadaan will abrogate the sins committed in between so long as one avoids any and all major sins."

We notice that Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) preconditioned that one must avoid all major sins in order to be entitled to have his sins abrogated and wiped out between the two months of Ramadaan. As for the person who fasts but does not maintain the five daily prayers, he is not actually avoiding the major sins. Purposeful negligence of the daily-prescribed prayers is one of the gravest major sins. In fact, neglecting the prayer in itself is an act of disbelief, namely it is a denial of the Existence of Allah, the All Mighty. Thus, fasting will not be accepted from such a person. One must repent to Allah; establish what is required to do in terms of the five daily-prescribed prayers first, then observe fasting. Thus, when Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) sent Mu'adh (radhi allahu anhu), his Companion, to Yemen, he commanded him, as reported by al-Bukharee, "Let the first thing you call them to be the testification that none has the right to be worshiped except Allah, and I am the Messenger of Allah. If they obey you in that, then inform them that Allah has made five prayers obligatory upon them in each day and night." We notice that the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) began with the prayers right after the declaration of faith. ['Fatawa on Fasting, Zakat and Taraweeh,' Published by Darussalam]
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