Wednesday, June 2, 2010

One may Jama’ the Solat Due to Sickness

One may Jama’ (Joining) Two Prayers because of Sickness

A person is sick with stomach cancer, and an opening has been left in his body at the stomach for drain out fluids and waste. He is asking whether it is permissible for him to join prayers.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful,
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

It is permissible for him to jama (join) prayers, so he may join Zuhur and ‘Asar, and Maghrib and ‘Isha’, at the time of the earlier or later prayer, depending on what is easiest for him. Difficulty caused by sickness is one of the excuses which make it permissible to join prayers.

The Prophet (sallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam) granted a concession to the woman who suffered from istihadah (non-menstrual bleeding), and he allowed her to jama’ (join) the prayers.

[Narrated by Abu Dawud (287) and al-Tirmidzi (128); classified as hasan by al-Albani in Sahih al-Tirmidzi]

Istihadah is a kind of sickness, and Imam Ahmad quoted as evidence for it being permissible for a sick person to join prayers the fact that sickness is worse than travel. He was treated with cupping after sunset, then he ate supper then he joined Maghrib and ‘Isha’ prayers.

[Kashshaf al-Qina’ (2/5)]

The scope of Jama’ prayers are broader than Qasar.

It should be noted that the sick person for whom it is permissible to jama’ (join) prayers should offer each prayer in full without shortening it, because qasar (shortening) of the prayers is only permitted for the traveller.

Some people think that if a person jama’ (joins) the prayers at home because of sickness he is also allowed to qasar (shorten) them. No, it is incorrect.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (rahimahullah) said:

The reason for qasar (shortening) prayers is travel only, and it is not permitted when one is not travelling. As for jama’ (joining) prayers when one has an excuse or a need, if he needs to, he may jama’ them when travelling short or long distances, and he may jama’ them when it is raining and the like, or when he is sick and the like, or for other reasons. The aim behind this is to spare the ummah from hardship.

The reasons which make it permissible to jama’ prayers are broader than those which make it permissible to qasar them. Jama’ prayers is permissible for every traveller, and for the non-traveller if the circumtances is too difficult for him to offer every prayer on time, such as one who is sick, or if there is rain, or he is busy with some work that he cannot delay in order to pray, such as a student taking an exam or a doctor who is doing surgery and so on.

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbas (radiallahu`anhu) said:

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam) joined Zuhur and ‘Asar, and Maghrib and ‘Isha’, in Madinah when there was no fear and no rain.

[Muslim (705)]

[According to another report: and no travelling]: It was said to Ibn ‘Abbas: Why did he do that? He said: So that his ummah would not be subjected to hardship

When Ibn ‘Abbas said that he jama’ (joined) the prayer despite the absence of these three things – travelling, fear and rain – that indicates that they are known reasons for joining prayers.

What Ibn ‘Abbas meant was that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam) jama’ (joined) prayers for a reason other than these three.

In relation to qasar (shortening) prayers, that is only permissible when travelling.

[Majmu’ al-Fatawa (22/293)]

Sheikh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said:

The Jama’ of Solat are broader in scope than shortening them, i.e., the reasons for doing so are more numerous.

[ Al-Liqa’ al-Shahri (60/11)]

And Allah knows best

[Excerpted with modification from Fatwa No: 97844 Islam Q;A]

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