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Passing urine while standing

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Sidi Suheil Laher

I have read here on sunnipath, that it is makruh to urinate while standing. However another muslim, who isn’t sunni, has presented a hadith for me. It says the seal of the prophets, Muhammad (May Allah send His peace and blessing upon him and his family), urinated while standing. I am no scholar, so I cannot explain this by myself. I therfore hope you will give me a detailed answer. This is the hadith: Volume 1, Book 4, Number 224: Narrated Hudhaifa: Once the Prophet went to the dumps of some people and passed urine while standing. He then asked for water and so I brought it to him and he performed ablution.

Answer:
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

wa`alaykum as-salam wa-rahmatullah
 
The hadith is authentic, and it indicates that it is permissible to urinate while standing. However, other narrations convey to us that the usual practice of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) was to urinate in the sitting posture. This is also usually more effective in concealing one’s private parts, and in preventing the urine from splashing back onto one’s body and clothes.
 
Among the evidence supporting the preferability of urinating while sitting is the following statement by the Mother of the Believers, `A’ishah (may Allah be well pleased with her): “Whoever tells you that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and his Household and grant him peace) used to urinate standing, do not believe him. He only used to urinate sitting.” [Narrated by Tirmidhi and others]
This clearly indicates that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) was not in the habit of urinating standing, so much so that his wife, Sayyidah `A’ishah, never saw him do so. Of course, she was not with him at all times, so her testimony does not negate the hadith you mention, but it does establish the preferred usual practice. His having urinated standing once is, however, sufficient to conclude that this is not prohibited, even thought it is not optimal.
 
Thus, urinating while standing is makruh tanzihi (better to avoid, but not sinful in itself) in the Hanafi school. [ Ibn `Abidin, I`la al-Sunan ] Qadi al-Shawkani (may Allah bless him) has mentioned that the same is the view of the majority of scholars, including the scholars of the Prophet’s Household (al-`Itrah). [ Nayl al-Awtar ] In some cases, it might be inescapable to urinate standing, such as if there is no suitable or clean place for sitting, or if sitting would lead to more splashing, or if one is injured and unable to sit.
 
And Allah knows best,
-sl

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