Tuesday, June 25, 2024
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Niqaab, du’aa, nutmeg, praying while sitting, gifts on Christmas

Fatwaa ID: 1922

Assalamu alaykum sheikh, here is the next batch of questions:

  1. What is the ruling on the Niqab in our times?
  2. Why are there specified scenarios/instances or timings in which duaa is more accepted? (if there is a reasoning)
  3. If a duaa is saved for the hereafter (what would that technically entail?) As I assumed that it may be counted as a good deed? since if someone was admitted to paradise, they wouldn’t necessarily “worry” about their duaa anymore?
  4. Does duaa acceptance tend to refer to an answer given that is a response (whether it was your intended desire or not), or does the word acceptance necessarily refer to obtaining our intended desire?
  5. Is nutmeg halal? Does it make a difference if it is used in large vs small quantities mixed with other spices? What would count as a “small quantity”?
  6. Is it permissible to speak to the opposite gender in conversation?
  7. When travelling, what are the conditions/distance that allows one to pray qasr salat?
  8. Is it permissible for one to pray salat while sitting down? Is it not allowed at all or are there certain exceptions?
  9. I am a recent revert. Am I allowed to give gifts during Christmas? If I can’t, my family will find out and I want to avoid that. For context, I still depend on them for tuition, food, rent, etc.

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.

  1. There is a difference of opinion amongst the jurists in regards to the ruling of niqaab. Most of our teachers held the position of obligation. That is the safest and most modest take on this. Kindly refer to the following for details:
  1. Allaah Ta’aala is ever Merciful and Gracious. He listens to our du’aas at all times. However, the emphasized moments are for us to connect with Him more. When Allaah Ta’aala tells us about a certain time or situation, it gives us the motivation to do more, and that is good for us. That is a mercy from Him to us. Likewise, in most instances, these are times that are blessed. Such times may also have other reasons and elements for why they are deemed special. For instance, the time of Tahajjud is a time where most are sleeping. A person making du’aa at this time sacrifices his sleep and comfort and connects with Allaah Ta’aala. Another instance is sujood. This is a situation where a person humbles himself the most. Sinerety is often found more during such moments as well.
  2. When a du’aa is not answered or replaced in this world but saved for the Hereafter, then that would refer to either rewards or a higher status in the Hereafter. It may also refer to expiation of a sin. Every reward and every status is worth it in the Hereafter.
  3. When making du’aa to Allaah Ta’aala, one should have firm belief and conviction that Allaah Ta’aala will accept his du’aa. Accepting the du’aa does not necessarily mean that He will give whatever one wishes for immediately. It may be that He will give it to him at a later stage. It may be that He will give him something else in place of that. It may also be that He will delay it till the Hereafter and give it there. In all cases, we know that Allaah Ta’aala is Al-Hakeem, the All-Wise. He is Al-Mujeeb, The One who answers du’aas.
    Even if a person does not get what he wants immediately, there is still no loss for him. Du’aa is a form of ‘ibaadah and one is rewarded for simply making du’aa. Du’aa is an intimate conversation with Allaah Ta’aala. One should feel honored to be given that chance and opportunity.
    It is important that for the acceptance of du’aas, one follows the appropriate etiquettes. One cannot simply make du’aa however he wants and then expect it to be accepted. From the prerequisites of the acceptance of du’aas is halaal food and halaal income. This plays a great role. There are many others which are beyond the scope of this fatwaa. We encourage you to study them.
  4. It is permissible to consume nutmeg. It is not an intoxicant in itself. However, consuming large amounts such that it affects one’s mind or harms the body is impermissible.
  5. Shari’ah has attempted to mitigate and close all doors that may lead to sin or immorality. Speaking to the opposite gender should be restricted to that which is necessary. Unrestricted, unmonitored and casual conversations should be avoided. The shaytaan looks for ways to make a person slip, especially in this avenue. Shari’ah has taken the extra step of lowering one’s gaze to protect one’s self even more.
  6. A traveler will shorten the applicable salaahs if his journey to another city, town, etc., is of 48 miles or more. He will start shortening once he leaves the city/town he is starting his journey from. He will continue shortening the applicable prayers throughout his journey. Once he reaches his destination, if his total stay there is up to 14 days, then he will continue shortening. If his stay is beyond that, then he will not shorten his prayers at all.
  7. In regards to fardh and waajib salaah, it is not permissible to perform salaah while sitting if one has the ability to stand. Standing is a requisite for the validity of the fardh and waajib salaahs. As for sunnah and nafl salaahs, a person will be permitted to sit and pray but his rewards will be halved.
    It should be noted that sitting on a chair does not qualify as sitting and praying. That is classified as praying with gestures. Sitting refers to sitting on the ground and making sujood on the ground. If one is genuinely unable to sit on the ground, then he will be excused to sit on a chair. Likewise, if one is unable to make sujood on the ground, then he will be excused to make sujood by bowing his head, i.e., with gestures. In the absence of a valid excuse, the salaah would be invalid.
  8. May Allaah Ta’aala make it easy for you and keep you steadfast upon the Deen. May He grant hidaayah to your family and loved ones.
    As Muslims, we are sensitive to our values of tawheed. Gifting for Christmas is a form of participation and legitimization, hence, impermissible. However, we understand that your situation is sensitive. You may gift your family during that time but your intention should not be for Christmas. Rather, intend thereby a general gift, with the purpose of bonding and joining hearts. When gifting, try not to use Christmas themed gift wraps or bags. Keep it general. Continue making du’aa for your family. Allow them to see a positive change in you. That will make it easier for you when you eventually inform them and it will also be a source of da’wah.

And Allaah Ta’aala knows best.
Mufti Muajul I. Chowdhury
Darul Iftaa New York

وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين


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