Fruits for the Week

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This section deals with those acts connected with ablution, but which are not obligatory, as the Prophet (SAW) did not rigorously stick to them or censure them anymore for not doing them. They are as follows:

1. Mention the name of Allah at the beginning.

There are some weak hadiths that mention this act, and all the chains of these hadiths point to the fact that there is some basis for this act. In any case, it is a good act in and of itself and, in general, it is part of Islamic law.

2. Dental Hygiene.

This involves using a stick or similar object to clean one’s teeth. The best type to use is that of the arak tree found in the Hijaz. Such a practice strengthens the gums, prevents tooth disease, helps digestion, and facilitates the flow of urine. This Sunnah is fulfilled by using any object which removes yellow stains on the teeth and cleans the mouth, such as a toothbrush, and so on. Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: “Were it not to be a hardship on my community, I would have ordered them to use a toothbrush for every ablution.” (Malik, Shafi, Baihaqi, and Hakim)

3. Wash your hands three times in the beginning.

This is based on the hadith of Aus al-Thaqafi who said, “I saw the Messenger of Allah make ablution, and he washed his hands three times.” (Ahmad and Nasa’i). Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (SAW) said, “When one of you raises from his sleep, he should not put his hand into a pot until he has washed it three times, for he does not know where his hand was (while he slept).” (Jamaah)

4. Rinse the mouth three times

Laqit ibn Sabrah reported that the Prophet (SAW) said, “When one performs ablution, he should rinse his mouth.” (Abu Dawud and Baihaqi)

5. Sniffing up and blowing out water three times

Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (SAW) said: “When one of you performs ablution, he should sniff water up his nostrils and then blow it out.” (Bukhari, Muslim, and Abu Dawud)

The Sunnah is to put the water into the nostrils with the right hand and blow it out with the left. Ali once called for water for ablution, rinsed his mouth, sniffed up water into his nostrils, and blew it out with his left hand. He did that three times and then said, “That is how the Prophet (SAW) would purify himself.” (Ahmad and Nasa’i)

This Sunnah is fulfilled by putting water into the mouth and nostrils in any way. The practice of the Prophet (SAW) was to do both acts at the same time.

6. Running one’s fingers through his beard

Aishah (RA) reported that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) would run his fingers through his beard.” (Ibn Majah, and Tirmidhi)

Anas said that when the Messenger of Allah (SAW) performed ablution, he would take a handful of water and put it under his jaws and pass it through his beard. He said, “This is what my Lord, Allah, ordered me to do.” (Abu Dawud, Baihaqi, and Al-Hakim)

7. Running water through one’s fingers and toes

Ibn Abbas said, “When the Messenger of Allah (SAW) performed ablution, he would run his fingers through his fingers and toes.” (The Five)

8. repeating each washing three times

This is a Sunnah that the Prophet (SAW) almost always followed. If he acted otherwise, it was just to show that the other acts are permissible. Amr ibn Shu’aib related the authority of his father from his grandfather who said, “A Bedouin came to the Messenger of Allah (SAW) and asked him about the ablution. He showed him how to wash each part three times and said, “This is the ablution. Whoever does more than that has done wrong, transgressed, and committed evil.” (Ahmad, Nasa’i, and Ibn Majah)

9. Beginning each action with the right side

Aishah said, “The Messenger of Allah (SWT) loved to begin with his right side while putting on his shoes, straightening his hair, and cleaning or purifying himself.” (Bukhari and Muslim). Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (SAW) said, “When you clothe or wash, begin with your right side.” (Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, and Nasa’i)

10. Rubbing the limbs with water

This means rubbing the hands over the bodily parts. Abdullah ibn Zaid reported that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) was brought a pot of water which he used to perform ablution, and then rubbed his arms. He also related that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) performed ablution, then rubbed his limbs.” (Abu Sawud, Ahmad, Ibn Hibban, and Abu Ya’la).

11. Wiping the ears

The Sunnah is to wipe the interior of the ears with the index fingers and the exterior portions with the thumbs. The water used to wipe the head is also used for the ears, as the ears are part of the head.

by As-Sayyid Sabiq

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