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Details about I’tikaaf

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Arij Canada

Details about I’tikaaf

I’tikaaf in the last ten days of Ramadān is an emphasized communal Sunnah (Sunna al-kifaayah). The men are to do it in the Masjid and the women in an area designated in their home for Salaat.(Al Durrul Mukhtar vol 2 pg 440-441)

Whilst making I’tikaaf, one is allowed to leave the Masjid either due to a Shari’ reason such as having to leave to perform the Jumuah Salaat (because this facility is not available where he is making I’tikaaf) or a natural reason such as to urinate or excuse himself or in an emergency like in the case of compulsion. (Tahtawi ala Maraaqil Falaah pg702-703)

It is permissible for a mu’takif to eat, drink, sleep and even buy items of necessity so long as the commodity is not brought into the Masjid. He/she is not permitted to leave the Masjid /place of I’tikaaf to fulfill these needs and if one does, the I’tikaaf will be nullified. On the same note, a woman sitting in I’tikaaf cannot leave her mu’takaf except for necessities. She would therefore not be allowed to eat in the kitchen. She should eat in her mu’takaf and her housemate may join her there if they wish to eat together.
(Al Mukhtar vol 2 pg 448-449, Tahtawi ala Maraaqil Falaah pg703-704)

It is forbidden for a mu’takif to engage in sexual intercourse or any foreplay, moreover, the I’tikaaf will be
invalidated due to intercourse or ejaculation due to foreplay. Similarly, it is disliked for a mu’takif to
remain silent if he considers it an act of worship. (Tahtawi ala Maraaqil Falaah pg 704-705)

If a mu’takif breaks his I’tikaaf, then qadha will be necessary only for the day he broke the I’tikaaf, not for the remaining days although it is preferable for him/her to repeat the whole I’tikaaf for 10 days with the fast. (Al Raddul Muhtaar vol 2 pg 444-445)


This Q&A was collected from the official web portal of Academy of Research in Islamic Jurisprudence (Arij) from Canada, which was headed by Mufti Ibrahim Kureshi and Mufti Zakariyya Panchbhaya. As the original website is no longer accessible, we have provided a source link of each answer to the archive copy from Way Back Machine.

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