Could Not Recall The Number Solah And Fasts Missed

Could Not Recall The Number Solah And Fasts Missed

Description: If someone could not remember the number of prayers and fasts he had missed, how should he make over them?

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All the praise and thanks is due to Allah, the Lord of the Al-Alamin. Peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.


The Issue of Making Up Missed Solat.

Solah may have been missed were due one of the following three scenarios:

1. The Solat was missed due to such as overslept or forgetting.

In this case it must be  made up as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him- sallallahu ‘alaihi wassallam-SAW) said: “Whoever forgets a prayer or sleeps and misses it, the expiation for that is to pray it when he remembers.” [Narrated by Al-Bukhari, 572; Muslim, 684].

He should offer these Solah in order of sequence as enjoined in a hadith by Jabir Ibn ‘Abdallah,  which recorded that ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) on the Day of Al-Khandaq after the sun had set, and started blaming the kuffar of Quraish and saying, “O Messenger of Allah! I could hardly pray ‘Asar until the sun had almost set.” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “By Allah! I did not pray it either.” We went to Bat-haan and he took the wudhu’ for prayer and so did we, then he prayed ‘Asar after the sun had set, then he prayed Maghrib after that. [Narrated by al-Bukhari (571) and Muslim (631)].

2. Omitted solah due to unaware of it because of unconsciousness.

In this case the solah is waived for him and he does not have to make it up.

[Fatawa Al-Lajnah Al-Da’imah, 6/21]

3. He missed the Solah for no valid reason.

One of two scenarios applies in this case:

·Either he denied and refused to accept that the solah is obligatory.

In this case there is no dispute that this is kufur and he has nothing to do with Islam. He has to enter Islam and then do all the duties and obligations of Islam, but he does not have to make up the prayers he missed when he was a kafir.

·Or, he did not observe the solah because he was negligent and lazy.

In this case the prayers are not valid if he makes them up, because he had no excuse at the time when he missed them.

·Allah has enjoined prayers at certain, clearly-defined times, as He says: “Verily, As Solah (the prayer) is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours” [An-Nisa’ 4:103]

·The Messenger of Allah SAW said: “Whoever does an action that is not part of this matter of ours will have it rejected.” [Narrated by Al-Bukhari, 2697; Muslim, 1718.]

Shaikh ‘Abd Al-‘Aziz Ibn Baaz (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

The one who missed prayers deliberately does not have to make them up, according to the correct scholarly view. Rather he has to repent to Allah, because prayer is the foundation of Islam, and failing to pray is the greatest of sins. In fact, failing to pray constitutes major kufur according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions, because it is narrated that the Messenger of Allah SAW said:

“The covenant that stands between us and them is prayer; whoever does not pray is a kafir.”

[Narrated by Imam Ahmad and the authors of Al-Sunan with a sahih isnad from Buraidah (may Allah be pleased with him)]

The Messenger Allah said:

“Between a man and syirik and kufur there stands his giving up prayer.” [Narrated by Imam Muslim in his Sahih from Jabir Ibn ‘Abdallah (may Allah be pleased with him)].

And there are other ahadith which indicate the same thing.

What is needed is to repent sincerely to Allah by regretting what you have done in the past, resolving not to go back to it. You do not have to make up anything, either with every prayer or otherwise. Praise be to Allah, whoever repents, Allah accepts his repentance. Allah says:

“And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful” [An-Nur 24:31]

And the Prophet SAW said: “The one who repents from sin is like one who did not sin at all.”

Sincere in the repentance entails to take stock of yourself, one have to ask Allah to forgive what you have done, strive to offer prayers regularly on time in congregation. And to embark in a lot of righteous deeds, and be optimistic, for Allah says:

“And verily, I am indeed forgiving to him who repents, believes (in My Oneness, and associates none in worship with Me) and does righteous good deeds, and then remains constant in doing them (till his death)” [Ta-Ha, 20:82]

After mentioning syirik, murder and zina (adultery) in Surah Al-Furqan, Allah says:

“..and whoever does this shall receive the punishment. The torment will be doubled to him on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein in disgrace. Except those who repent and believe (in Islamic Monotheism), and do righteous deeds; for those, Allah will change their sins into good deeds, and Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful” [Al-Furqan 25:68-70]

[Majmu’ Fatawa Al-Shaikh Ibn Baaz, 10/329, 330]

The Issue Of Making Up Missed Fasts

If you did not fast during the time when you did not pray, then you do not have to make up those fasts, because the one who does not pray is a kafir in the sense of major kufur that puts him beyond the pale of Islam – as stated above. When a kafir becomes Muslim, he is not obliged to make up acts of worship that he did not do when he was a kafir.

But if you did not fast at a time when you were praying, then one of the following two scenarios must apply:

·Either you failed to form the intention to fast from the night before, and you decided rather that you would not fast.

In this case making up the fasts would not be valid in your case, because you failed to do the act of worship at the time prescribed for it by Islam, with no excuse.

·Or you started to fast then you broke the fast during the day.

In this case you have to make it up, because when the Prophet SAW commanded the one who had had intercourse during the day in Ramadhan to offer expiation for that, he said to him: “Fast one day in its stead.”  [Narrated by Abu Dawud, 2393; Ibn Majah, 1671; classified as sahih by Al-Albani in Irwa’ Al-Ghalil, 940].

Regarding the one who intentionally breaks the fast by having sexual intercourse with his wife during the daytime in Ramadhan, then he has committed a great sin and violated the sacredness of this month, and must make up the fast for that day. In addition, he is required to free a slave if it is possible to do so, if not, he has to fast two consecutive months and if he is unable to do so, then to he has feed sixty poor and needy people. The same is required of the wife as is required of her husband, if she freely consented (to having sexual intercourse). However, if she was forced, then nothing is required of her according to the predominant opinion of the scholars.

This is in pursuance of a hadith narrated by Abu Hurairah RA that a person came to see the Apostle of Allah SAW and said:

“O Messenger of Allah, I am undone. The Holy Prophet SAW asked him: What has brought about your ruin? The man said: I have had intercourse with my wife during the month of Ramadhan. Upon this the Prophet SAW said: Can you find a slave to set him free? He said: No. Then Prophet SAW said: Can you observe fast for two consecutive months? He said: No. The Prophet SAW then said: Can you provide food to sixty poor people? He said: No. He then sat down and (in the meanwhile) it was brought to the Apostle of Allah SAW a basket which contained dates. The Prophet SAW finally said: Give these (dates) in charity. The man said: Am I to give to one who is poorer than me? There is no family poorer than mine between the two lava plains of Madinah. The Apostle of Allah SAW broke into laughter that his molar teeth became visible and said: Go and give it to your family to eat.” [Muslim].

If one intentionally breaks his fast by eating or drinking without a legitimate excuse, then again he has committed a great sin and violated the sacredness of this month. Such a person has a severe threat awaiting him. Prophet Muhammad SAW said: “Whoever breaks fasting of Ramadhan without having a legitimate excuse or being ill, he cannot make up for that day, even if he undertakes a perpetual fast.” [Al-Bukhari]

According to Imams Ahmad, Ash-Shafi’e, Sa’id Ibn Al-Musaiyib and Al-Shabby and others said that one should sincerely repent and seek the forgiveness of Almighty Allah and make up the day later [followed by observing the righteous deeds].

This is what some of scholars regarded as an expiation that is required for breaking the fast of Ramadhan without a valid reason. They say, one should fast for two months consecutively or feed sixty poor people as well as to make up the day later with any of both forms of expiation. The most right things to do is a total repentance and embarking on righteous deeds.

Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimin (may Allah have mercy on him) was asked about the ruling on breaking the fast during the day in Ramadhan with no excuse. He replied:

Breaking the fast during the day in Ramadhan with no excuse is a major sin, which makes a person a fasiq (disobedient, evildoer) who has to repent to Allah and make up the day when he broke his fast; if he fasted then during the day he broke his fast with no excuse, then he has sinned, and he has to make up the day when he broke the fast, because when he started it, it became binding upon him, so he has to make it up, like a vow. But if he did not fast at all, deliberately, with no excuse, then it is most likely that he does not have to make it up, because that will not benefit him at all, for it will never be accepted from him.

The basic principle with regard to every act of worship which is to be done at a specific time is that if it is delayed beyond that time with no excuse, it will not be accepted, because the Prophet SAW said: “Whoever does any action that is not in accordance with this matter of ours will have it rejected.” And he has transgressed the limits set by Allah, and transgressing the limits set by Allah is zulm (wrongdoing), and good deeds are not accepted from the wrongdoer. Allah says: “And whoever transgresses the limits ordained by Allah, then such are the Zalimun (wrongdoers)” [Al-Baqarah 2:229]

If he had done this act of worship ahead of time – such as before the time for it commence – it would not have been accepted of him, and by the same token, if he does it after that it will not be accepted from him, unless he has an excuse.

[Majmu’ Fatawa Al-Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimin (19, Question No. 45)]

What he has to do is repent sincerely from all sins, and perform obligatory duties regularly and on time, and give up evil deeds, and do a lot of righteous deeds and acts of worship.

Allah the exalted knows best.

[Excerpted from Islam Q&A]


About Md Radzi Ahmad
A retired Malaysian civil servant. Served the Malaysian government for thirty-one years. Posted to London, Rangoon, Johannesburg, Pretoria and Bangkok. Born in Kampong Hutan Kandeh, Alor Star, Kedah. Educated at Sultan Abdul Hamid College, Alor Star and University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur. Currently resides in Subang Jaya, Selangor Darul Ehsan,Malaysia.Blessed with three children, a son, two daughters, daughter in law and two grandaughters.

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