In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Rules Related to Fasting


Warning against abandoning fasting in Ramadan

Narrated Abu Hurayrah (ra), The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "If anyone breaks his fast one day in Ramadan without a concession granted to him by Allah, a perpetual fast will not atone for it." [Sunan of Abu Dawud, Hadith no. 992]


Fidyah - The person who is extremely old and does not have the strength of fasting, and the person who is extremely ill and does not have any hope of recovering nor the strength to fast will have to give grain to a poor person equivalent to the amount stipulated for sadaqatul fitr in place of every fast that such people miss. Alternatively, they could feed one poor person with two complete meals for each fast that they miss. In the Shariah this is known as fidyah. It is also permissible for such persons to give the value of the grain in cash.

The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) has given guidance to the Muslims for each and every thing. He has given detailed instructions on when to start the month of Ramadhan and how to spend time during this month.


Beginning and Ending of Ramadhan:

Narrated Ibn Umar (ra), I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "When you see the crescent (of the month of Ramadan), start fasting, and when you see the crescent (of the month of Shawwal), stop fasting; and if the sky is overcast (and you can't see it) then regard the month of Ramadan as of 30 days." [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 3 (Fasting), Hadith no. 124 and Sahih Muslim, Hadith no. 525, narrated Abu Hurayrah]

Narrated Ibn Umar (ra) and he SAW said:

"We are an illiterate nation that neither write, nor know accounts (i.e. using astronomical calculations). The month is like this and this. Meaning: Sometimes it is of twenty nine days, and sometimes it is of thirty."[Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 3 (Fasting), Hadith no. 137]

Forgetfulness while fasting: Narrated Abu Hurayrah, the Prophet SAW said, "If somebody eats something forgetfully while he is fasting, then he should complete his fast, for Allah has made him eat and drink." [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 8 (Oaths and Vows), Hadith no. 662] 


Etiquettes of Sehri (food taken at dawn): Eat Sehri as there are blessings in eating Sehri.

At time of Iftar (opening the Fast): There are some times during the day that are more helpful and assist in prayers being answered, Allah accepts more prayers when the fast is opened (that is offered by someone who has been fasting).

Narrated Abu Huraira (ra), the Prophet (saw) said, "Allah said: The Fast is for Me and I will give the reward for it, as he (the one who observes the fast) leaves his sexual desire, food and drink for My Sake. Fasting is a screen (from Hell) and there are two pleasures for a fasting person, one at the time of breaking his fast, and the other at the time when he will meet his Lord. And the smell of the mouth of a fasting person is better in Allah's Sight than the smell of musk." [Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 9 (Monotheism), Hadith no. 584]



a) Fast is performed between the time of True Fajr (that which makes food forbidden for the fasting person, and makes Fajr prayer lawful,as explained by:

Narrated Anas, Zaid bin Thabit said, "We took the Suhur (the pre-dawn meal) with the Prophet. Then he stood for the prayer." I asked, "What was the interval between the Suhur and the Adhan?" He replied, "The interval was sufficient to recite fifty verses of the Qur'an."[Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 3 (Fasting), Hadith no. 144]

So if a man fasted during the night and did not fast during the day, his fast will never be correct (i.e. acceptable). This is the statement of Allah the Almighty:

...then complete your fast till the night appears... [Surah Al-Baqarah 2:187]

b) Fasting is abstention from eating, drinking and sexual intercourse by day with the intention.


It is the resolve of the heart to fast in carrying out the command of Allah The Mighty and Majestic, or to draw near to Him. Allah (swt) says:

Your Lord knoweth best what is in your hearts: if ye do deeds of righteousness verily He is Most Forgiving to those who turn to Him again and again (in true penitence). [Surah Al-Israa 17:25]

If the fast is an obligatory fast, then the intention must be made during the (previous) night, before Fajr time (the first crack of dawn).

1.  Things which invalidates fasting and requires full recompense

1.1 If someone intentionally does one of the following without any valid excuse(see 1.2 below)

a) Does not fast at all

b) Breaks fast by eating, drinking and sexual activities

c) Assuming that cupping has broken ones fast thus quit fasting for the day.

1.2 Expiation (Kaffarah) for the above is to

a) Fast unceasingly for two months (60 days), if one breaks fast during this one has to start anew.

b) If unable to do so, it is to feed 60 needy persons two full meal

c) If unable to do so, it is to free one slave.

1.3 Things that break fast and requires one to fast similar numbers of days in recompense

a) If something is entered into the body during the hours when one is supposed to fast, irrelevant of how it entered into the body.

  • To eat something which is not food such as stone particle or smoking anything.
  • When water enters stomach while gargling
  • When one is fed by force even when one is sleeping or unconscious
  • Inject medicine, place them on wounds which eventually gets in.
  • Eating by mistake thinking it is still night or iftar time is due while it is not.
  • Involuntary full mouth vomiting and subsequent swallowing of it or part of it.
  • When one is force into sexual intercourse or when one is sleeping or unconscious

b) Fasting without intention
c) Breaking (iftar) fast without the intention of doing so.
d) Lustful kissing of ones spouse
e) Emission of semen due to touching, kissing, masturbation.
f) Intentional vomiting. 

2. Offensive acts during fasting

a) Backbiting, slander
b) To lie or deceive
c) To use abusive language
d) Not having iftar
e) Taste a food without swallowing it, using toothpaste.
f) Gargling water due to thirsts or hot weather.
g) Wrapping oneself with wet clothes.
h) Throwing up intentionally
i) Weakening the body (e.g. strenuous sport)
j) Gathering saliva and swallowing it.

3. Days when fasting is forbidden

a) Day of Eid ul Fitr (Eid of Ramadan)
b) During Eid ul Adha 10, 11, 12 and 13 of month of Dhul Hijjah

4. Events when it is allowed to break the fast and fast later the similar number of days

a) If fasting aggravates health-condition
b) Snake biting
c) Thirsts due to newly developed disease
d) Genuine danger for a pregnant mother, or for her fetus.
e) Genuine fear for the life of a suckling infant
f) Reason to fear death
g) Menstruation
h) If one is a traveller

5. Things that do not break fast

a) Those things which would otherwise break fast does not do so when one is unaware of the fact that one is fasting (complete forgetfulness of fasting).

b) Entrance of insects (i.e mosquitos), smoke and dust from natural environment does not break fast.

c) Wet dream, swallowing ones own saliva when still in the mouth, brushing teeth, smearing oil, ointment on unwounded body do not break fast. or used antimony [in his eyes],

d) If one is overcome by vomiting, his fast is not broken.

6. Etiquettes and Desirable Practices

  1. Preparing for the month.
  2. Bringing to mind the bounty of Allah.
  3. Purifying one's intention
  4. Pre-dawn meal (suhur) as late as safely possible.
  5. Not unnecessarily delaying the breakingof the fast.
  6. Performing salat al-Maghrib soon after breaking the fast, then returning to eat.
  7. Making du`a at the time of breaking the fast.
  8. Enabling others to break their fasts.
  9. Abstaining from all forbidden deeds.
  10. Maintaining a pleasant disposition.
  11. Abundant reciting of the Qur'an.
  12. Abundant Charity.
  13. Performing Tarawih prayers.


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah's Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength. May Allah (swt) keep us on the Straight Path. Aameen.

  • The Meaning of the Holy Qur’an, 11th edition 1429 AH / 2008 C.E with Revised English Translation, Commentary and Index by ‘Abdullah Yusuf ‘Ali.
  • Sahih Al-Bukhari translated by Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan, Islamic University Al-Medina Al-Munawwara, Published: 1980, Publisher: Dar Al Arabia, Beirut, Lebanon.



Blessings of the Month

Qur'an on Fasting

Rules related to Fasting

Explained Virtues of Fasting (Saum)

Rewards of Fasting

Common errors made during Ramadhan

Charity in Ramadhan

Benefits of Dates

Zakaah al-Fitr

Eid ul-Fitr