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Fasting / Making a specific intention for a compulsory fast

Making a specific intention for a compulsory fast

date de publication : 2014-07-02 | Vues : 2348
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Dear respected Shaykh, assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh. What is the ruling of making a specific intention for a compulsory fast? تعيين النية في الصيام الواجب؟

Praise be to Allah, and may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allah, his family and his companions.   Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh.   As to what follows:   In response to your question, we say:     The compulsory fast is of different types: if the fast is to make up for missed fasts of the past  years like the past Ramadan, or the past several years; then in this case a person does not need to say, “This is the fast to make up for such and such a year,” because these fasts are of the same type. However, if the types of the compulsory fasts are different like if the fasting is for a vow, expiation, or to make up for missed fasts in Ramadan then in that case it is compulsory for a believer to make intention for the specific fast that he wishes to observe because the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The reward of deeds depends upon the intentions ” [al-Bukhari: (1)]. This is like when you stand up to perform Zuhr and ‘Asr as combined prayers, you do not say, “I am performing the compulsory prayer”  only, rather, when you combine the prayers you pray Zuhr first then pray ‘Asr. You make the intention for Zuhr, then you make the intention for ‘Asr. If you were making up for missed prayers you would also make the intention for Zuhr and make the intention for ‘Asr, and you would not suffice by making four rak’ats of prayer which are performed without a specific intention.  Thus it is compulsory to make a specific intention. If the types of fasting are different as I have mentioned  like when a person is fasting to make up for missed fasts, a vow, or expiation then a specific intention should be made. If the fasts are of the same type but have different reasons like a vow to fast which was made repeatedly, or fasting to make up for missed fasts in the previous year and the one before it, it is sufficient for a person to make an intention that he is fasting to make up for missed fasts of Ramadan and he does not need to specify the year. What is apparent is that there is no problem if a person did not make a specific intention while observing fasts of different types. This is based on the opinion of those  who say that it is sufficient to intend to fast a compulsory fast. However,  in future such a person should strive to make a specific intention so that he is undoubtedly freed from obligation.      

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