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What Ruling Applies To Someone With Flatulence Issues During Prayer?

Answered as per Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org
Question: I have been struggling to focus properly during my salah due to flatulence issues. I think it is an anxiety-related IBS. I doubt whether my salah is valid, and it causes a great amount of stress. The minute I enter into salah my stomach starts cramping, and I feel the urge to pass wind. This only happens during salah, so I do nog think I fall under the category of “Daa’imul Hadath.” Would the ruling still apply to me in terms of making wudu for each prayer time and continuing my prayer regardless?
Answer:Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. I pray that you recover completely from this condition, and I urge you to see a health practitioner, even an alternative one, such as a homeopath or naturopath to address your issue. I personally have had much success with them, by the grace of Allah.

Chronic Annulment of Ritual Ablution

If you have flatulence that only occurs during the prayer due to your anxiety, you do fall under the category of ‘Da’im al hadath‘. A person with chronic annulment of wudu (da’im al-hadath) for example, because of the constant release of wind, is not obliged to try praying several times without releasing wind. His prayer is perfectly valid, if he has made wudu with an intention suitable to his state and prays his obligatory prayer once, even if he passes wind during the whole prayer. He is considered to have chronic annulment if he cannot find enough time to be free of breaking his wudu, or if he does find enough time, but is unable to pinpoint when it will occur.

The Correct Intention

My teacher, Shaykh Hamza Karamali, summarized the correct intention of a person in the chronic annulment of ablution:

“The da’im al-hadath is like someone who makes tayammum, meaning that they intend one of three things with their wudu. Either (1) to make fard prayers permissible or (2) to make sunna prayers permissible or (3) to make it permissible to touch the Quran and the like. A level 1 intention makes everything below it permissible. A level 2 intention makes level 3 permissible, too. A level 3 intention only makes level 3 permissible.

With a level 1 intention, one can only perform a single fard prayer. After one performs the fard prayer, one can continue to pray sunna prayers or touch the Quran, but if one wants to pray another fard prayer, one needs a fresh wudu. It is only valid to do a wudu for a fard prayer after the prayer time has entered.”

Do not hesitate to follow up if it is not clear.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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