Abdullahi Isezuo SANNI
Based on authentic narrations from the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W), it is clear that the one who fasts the month of Ramadan and follows it up with six days in Shawwaal (Sittu Shawwaal,) earns a reward of one who fasts for one year. It is also clear that the Sittu Shawwaal may be done consecutively or intermittently. However it is unclear to many of us who missed few, many or all days in Ramadan on how/when to fast Sittu Shawwaal in order to attain the divine bonanza of a year’s fast. Below are some of the divergent scholarly opinions of our jurisconsults.
- Majority of scholars, both past and present, agree that one may delay making up of missed Ramadan fast until the following year based on the implication of Q2:185 and Hadith Aishah Radiyallaahu Anha where she said: ” I am not able to make up missed days of Ramadan fast until Sha’ban of the following year.
- However scholars disagree on the permissibility or otherwise of performing Sunnah/voluntary fasts before paying up missed days of Ramadan.
- The Hanafiyyah and a narration of Hanabilah opined that it is permissible to fast Sittu Shawwaal in the month of Shawwaal before making up missed days of Ramadan. This may be because time frame of fasting Sittu Shawwaal is limited while that of paying up missed Ramadan fast is one year i.e. before next Ramadan.
- The Malikiyyah opined that it is disliked/discouraged to do Sittu Shawwaal before missed days of Ramadan i.e. one should pay up Ramadan before doing Sittu Shawwaal.
- The Shafi’iyyah opined that it is most preferred to pay up missed days of Ramadan before doing any Sunnah/ voluntary fasting i.e. it isn’t totally wrong to do Sittu Shawwaal before making up missed days of Ramadan.
- A second narration of the Hanabilah opined that it is not permissible to engage in any Sunnah/voluntary fast without paying up missed days of Ramadan fast i.e. it is totally wrong to do Sittu Shawwaal before making up missed days of Ramadan.
- Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen opined that it is not permissible to fast Sittu Shawwaal before making up missed days of Ramadan, even if paying up missed days of Ramadan may extend beyond the month of Shawwaal. This automatically transforms Sittu Shawwaal to be a “carry over”. So the one who is still desirous of fasting Sittu Shawwaal should make intention and go ahead to fast it as carry over in any other month.
References for further readings:
- Al-Badaa’i vol. 2, pg 104.
- Mawaahibul-Jaleel vol. 2, pg 418.
- Al-Majmoo’u vol. 6, pg 375.
- Al-Mughni vol. 4, pg 104.
- AlMumti’ vol. 6, pg 448.
- Al-Mawsoo’aatul-Fiqhiyyah Al-Kuwaytiyyah.
- Saheehul-Fiqhis-Sunnah of Shaykh Abu Malik.