Fasting on the day of A’shura

August 28, 2020

Board f Imams Victoria is pleased to extend best wishes to the Muslim community on the occasion of ‘A’shura’ the 10th day of Muharram, Hijri 1442.

It’s strongly recommended to fast on these blessed days. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said:  The best of fasting after Ramadhan is fasting Allah’s month of Muharram.” (Reported by Muslim, 1982)


This year A’shura falls on Saturday 29th of August (https://boiv.org.au/resources/). It’s recommended to fast on the 9th and 10th OR 10th and 11th Muharram. It’s alright to fast only on the 10th if it’s difficult for someone to fast two consecutive days or missed one day.
‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with them both) said: 

“When the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) fasted on ‘Ashura’ and commanded the Muslims to fast as well, they said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, it is a day that is venerated by the Jews and Christians.’ The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, ‘If I live to see the next year, in sha Allah, we will fast on the ninth day too.’ But it so happened that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) passed away before the next year came.” (Reported by Muslim, 1916) Imam an-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: 

“It expiates for all minor sins, i.e., it brings forgiveness of all sins except major sins.” Then he said (may Allah have mercy on him): “Fasting the day of ‘Arafah expiates for two years, and the day of ‘Ashura’ expiates for
one year.

If when a person says ‘Amin’ it coincides with the ‘Amin’ of the angels, he will be forgiven all his previous sins … Each one of the things that we have mentioned will bring expiation. If there are minor sins for which expiation is needed, expiation for them will be accepted; if there are no minor sins or major sins, good deeds will be added to his account and he will be raised in status … If he had committed major sins but no minor sins, we hope that his major sins will be reduced.” [Al-Majmu’ Sharh al-Muhadhdhab, part 6, Sawm Yawm ‘Arafah]

Some people asked if it’s permissible to fast ‘Ashuara’ when he/she is still has days to make up missing days of fast from Ramadan.
The fuqaha’ differed concerning the ruling on observing voluntary fasts before a person has made up days that he or she did not fast in Ramadhan. The Hanafis said that it is permissible to observe voluntary fasts before making up days from Ramadhan, and it is not makruh to do so, because the missed days do not have to be made up straight away.

The Malikis and Shafi’is said that it is permissible but is makruh, because it means that one is delaying something obligatory. Ad-Dusuqi said: “It is makruh to observe a voluntary fast when one still has to make up an obligatory fast, such as a fast in fulfillment of a vow, or a missed obligatory fast, or a fast done as an act of expiation (kafarah), whether the voluntary fast which is being given priority over an obligatory fast is something confirmed in Shari’ah or not, such as ‘Ashura’ and the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah, according to the most correct opinion.” The Hanbalis said that it is haram to observe a voluntary fast before making up any fasts missed in Ramadhan, and that a voluntary fast in such cases does not count, even if there is plenty of time to make up the obligatory fast. So a person must give priority to the obligatory fasts until he has made them up. [Al-Mawsu’ah al-Fiqhiyyah, part 28, Sawm at-Tatawwu’]


Muslims must hasten to make up any missed fasts after Ramadhan, so that they will be able to fast ‘Arafah and ‘Ashura’ without any problem. If a person fasts ‘Arafah and ‘Ashura’ with the intention from the night before of making up for a missed fast, this will be good enough to make up what he has missed, for the bounty of Allah is great.

We ask Allah to make us the followers of the Sunnah of His Noble Prophet, to make us live in Islam and die in a state of faith. May He help us to do that which He loves and which pleases Him. We ask Him to help us to
remember Him and be thankful to Him, to worship Him properly and to accept our good deeds. May He make us of those who are pious and fear Him.

May Allah bless our Prophet Muhammad and all his family and companions.

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