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Having doubts of being Impure doesn`t Invalidate One’s Ablution

Answered as per Shafi'i Fiqh by Darul Iftaa Jordan
Is the person, who has doubts about being pure due to having the condition of urine incontinence, permitted to lead people in prayer? And what is the ruling on following him in prayer?

All perfect praise be to AllahThe Lord of the Worlds, and may His peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad and upon all of his family and companions.

According to Muslim Jurists, incontinence is theinvoluntary continuous flow or discharge of urine, pre-seminal fluid, sperm, wind, feces….etc.

In addition, whoever has the aforementioned condition is exempted, in light of Sharia, so long it doesn`t hinder him from making ablution or performing obligatory prayers. He is permitted to pray under the condition that he/she makes ablution for each obligatory prayer after its time begins and he may perform as many voluntary prayers as he desires.

However, if the discharges ceased for a time interval that enables him to make ablution and perform prayer, then he should make ablution and change the impure piece of textile covering his private part with a clean one, in addition to changing or cleaning clothes that sustained impurity.

In conclusion, Muslim jurists are of the view that if both the Imam and the person(s) praying behind him have the aforementioned condition, then their prayer is valid. Moreover, according to the Shafie school of thought: "If the Imam suffers from incontinence of urine, but the person(s) praying behind him doesn`t, then their prayer is valid and there is no need to redo it." Further, it is stated in [Mattin Al-Minhaj] :" The preponderant opinion is that if the Imam had incontinence of urine and the person(s) praying behind him was healthy then their prayer is valid." And Allah knows best.

This answer was collected from the official government Iftaa Department of Jordan.