May Allah bless Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and those who came after them. Peace be upon those who seek the Guidance.
Assalam o Alaikum rahamutullahi wa barakuthu,
This article will focus on Wudu which is essential to be performed before Salat.
Salat is 2nd pillar of Islam after Shahadah. There are five daily prayers that we are commanded to perform. Allah has ordered salat in Quran.
﴾وَأَقِيمُواْ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَءَاتُواْ ٱلزَّكَوٰةَ وَٱرۡكَعُواْ مَعَ ٱلرَّٰكِعِينَ ٣٤﴿
“And establish prayer and give zakah and bow with those who bow [in worship and obedience].” (Surah Baqarah 43)
﴾حَٰفِظُواْ عَلَى ٱلصَّلَوَٰتِ وَٱلصَّلَوٰةِ ٱلۡوُسۡطَىٰ وَقُومُواْ لِلَّهِ قَٰنِتِينَ٢٣٨﴿
“Maintain with care the [obligatory] prayers and [in particular] the middle prayer and stand before Allah, devoutly obedient.”
(Surah Baqarah 238)
﴾وَأَنۡ أَقِيمُواْ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَٱتَّقُوهُۚ وَهُوَ ٱلَّذِىٓ إِلَيۡهِ تُحۡشَرُونَ ٢٧﴿
“And to establish prayer and fear Him.” And it is He to whom you will be gathered.”
(Surah An-‘am 6:72)
There are many verses about salat and Wudu is obligatory before performing salat.
WUDU is the state of purification, which Muslims make daily to perform prayers. There is also tayammum, another method of wudu, only in specific cases.
Being in state of wudu is the fundamental part of performing prayer, which without it, our prayers will not be acceptable. It is necessary to learn how to make wudu according to Quran and Sunnah.
Allah tells us regarding wudu in Quran:
يَٰأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ إِذَا قُمۡتُمۡ إِلَى ٱلصَّلَوٰةِ فَٱغۡسِلُواْ وُجُوهَكُمۡ وَأَيۡدِيَكُمۡ إِلَى ٱلۡمَرَافِقِ وَٱمۡسَحُواْ بِرُءُوسِكُمۡ وَأَرۡجُلَكُمۡ إِلَى ٱلۡكَعۡبَيۡنِۚ وَإِن كُنتُمۡ جُنُبًا فَٱطَّهَّرُوۚاْ وَإِن كُنتُم مَّرۡضَىٰٓ أَوۡ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ أَوۡ جَآءَ أَحَدٌ مِّنكُم مِّنَ ٱلۡغَآئِطِ أَوۡ لَٰمَسۡتُمُ ٱلنِّسَآءَ فَلَمۡ تَجِدُواْ مَآءً فَتَيَمَّمُواْ صَعِيدًا طَيِّبًا فَٱمۡسَحُواْ بِوُجُوهِكُمۡ وَأَيۡدِيكُم مِّنۡهُۚ مَا يُرِيدُ ٱللَّهُ لِيَجۡعَلَ عَلَيۡكُم مِّنۡ حَرَجٍ وَلَٰكِن يُرِيدُ لِيُطَهِّرَكُمۡ وَلِيُتِمَّ نِعۡمَتَهُۥ عَلَيۡكُمۡ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَشۡكُرُونَ ٦
“O you who have believed, when you rise to [perform] prayer, wash your faces and your forearms to the elbows and wipe over your heads and wash your feet to the ankles. And if you are in a state of janabah, then purify yourselves. But if you are ill or on a journey or one of you comes from the place of relieving himself or you have contacted women and do not find water, then seek clean earth and wipe over your faces and hands with it. Allah does not intend to make difficulty for you, but He intends to purify you and complete His favor upon you that you may be grateful.” (Surah Maida 6)
Condition of wudu according to scholars:
1. Being Muslim of sound mind (not insane)
2. Having reached age of puberty
3. Intention (in heart not in verbal)
4. Pure water
5. Getting rid of anything that prevents the water from reaching skin (paint, nail polish etc)
The Essential parts of wudu as mentioned in Quran:
1. Washing face
2. Washing forearms to elbows
3. Wiping head
4. Washing feets to ankles
Note: These parts must be cleaned properly (no dry spot) and washing with no lengthy lapse of time in between)
During Wudu, body parts can be cleaned one time, two times or three times. Below are ahadith on this matter.
1. Narrated Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him):
“The Prophet (peace be upon him) performed ablution by washing the body parts only once.” Bukhari 157
2. Narrated: Abdullah bin Zaid (may Allah be pleased with him):
“The Prophet (peace be upon him) performed ablution (Wudu) by washing the body parts twice.” Bukhari 158
3. Narrated Humran, the slave of Uthman (may Allah be pleased with him):
“I saw Uthman bin Affan asking for a tumbler of water (and when it was brought), he poured water over his hands and washed them thrice and then put his right hand in the water container and rinsed his mouth, washed his nose by putting water in it and blowing it out. Then he washed his face and forearms up to elbow thrice, passed his (wet)hands over his head, and washed his feet up to the ankles thrice. Then he said, “Allah’s Messenger said, “If anyone performs ablution like that of mine and offers a two Rakat Salat (prayer) during which he does not think of anything else, then his past sins will be forgiven.” Bukhari 159
Washing each part 3 times is recommended.
It is highly recommended to use miswak when making wudu. There is no hadith on any specific timings to use miswak while making wudu. The scholars have different opinions on this matter. One can use miswak before wudu, or after washing hands and before rinsing, or while rinsing, or after wudu.
In the light of the Quran and Sunnah, the correct method of wudu is:
1. It is sunnah (not obligatory) to say bismilliah before starting the ablution
2. Washing both hands 3 times
3. Rinsing mouth and blowing nose 3 times
4. Washing face 3 times
5. Washing forearms to elbows 3 times
6. Wiping the head twice (from front to back, then back to front), and ears, both inner and outer parts
7. Washing feet to ankles 3 times
Steps of Wudu:
1. Begin by saying Bismilliah (not obligatory)
2. Wash both of your hands
3. Wash between fingers.
4. Rinse your mouth
Note: It is sunnah to put same handful of water in mouth and nose, it can be done by putting half water into mouth and sniffing half of water, the water goes out of mouth before nose.
5. Blow your nose
6. Wash your face (hair of beard is a part of face)
As for thin beard, one should wash it inside and out
7. In case of thick beard, wash the surface, and run your wet fingers through it
8. Wash both of your forearms to elbows
9. Wipe your head (starting with front to back, and then back to front)
10. Wipe both of your ears, (inner and outer)
11. Wash both of your feets to ankles.
After wudu, it is recommended to recite these supplications:
“Ash-hadu an la ilaha ill-Allahu wahdahu la sharikha lahu, wa ash hadu, anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu wa Rasuluhu” Reference: Abu Dawood 169 and Sahih Muslim 234a
“I tesitfy that there is no one worthy of worship but Allah, He is Alone and has no partner and Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.”
“Allahumma aj’alni minat-tawwabina waj’alni minAI-mutatahhrina”
Reference: Bulugh al-Maram 57
“Oh Allah! include me among those who repent and those who keep themselves pure.”
“Subhanaka Allah humma wa bihamdika, ashhadu anlaa ilaaha illa anta, astaghfiruka wa atoobu ilaik” Reference: An-Nasa’i, ‘Amalul-Yawm wal-Laylah, p. 173
“Glory be to You, O Allah, and praise; I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but You, I seek Your forgiveness and turn to You in repentance.”
1. It is common to see people wasting so much water. Wudu can still be made even with a bottle of water. Extravagance is forbidden in Qur’an 6:141
2. Some people also wipe their arms after wiping the head, this is not reported in ahadith.
3. Wiping front and back neck after wiping the head, this is not prescribed, and the ahadith concerning this are weak.
4. Some people raise their finger after wudu is made, this is not reported and hence is considered as biddah.
5. Looking up at the sky not reported in ahadith.
Virtues of Wudu:
1. Sins are forgiven, and ranks are raised
Sahih Muslim 251:
It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Shall I not tell you something by means of which Allah erases sins and raises people in status?” They said: “Yes, O Messenger of Allah!” He said: “Performing wudu properly during times when it is difficult to do so, taking many steps to the Masjid (i.e., coming to Masjid even from afar), and waiting for prayer after prayer. That is your Ribat, “
Abu Dawood 774:
It was narrated that Abu Hurairah said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “When one of you performs ablution (wudu) and does it well, then he comes to the mosque with no other motive but prayer and not seeking anything other than the prayer, he does not take one step but Allah raises him in status one degree thereby, and takes away one of his sins, until he enters the mosque. When he enters the mosque he is in a state of prayer so long as he is waiting for the prayer.
2. Shining face and limbs
Sahih Muslim 249:
It was narrated from Abu Hurairah:
that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) came to the graveyard and said: “Peace be upon the abode of believing people, and if Allah wills we will join you soon. Would that we could see our brothers.” They said: “Are we not your brothers, O Messenger of Allah?” He said “You are my companions. Our brothers are those who have not come yet.” They said: “How will you recongize those of your Ummah who have not come yet, O Messenger of Allah?” He said: “Do you not see that if a man has a horse that has a white blaze and white feet among horses that are all black, will he not recongnize his horse?” They said: “Of course, O Messenger of Allah!” He said: “You will come to me with glimmering faces and limbs (like the white markings of a horse) because of the traces of wudu‘. I will reach the Cistern (Hawd) before them. And Lo! Men will be driven away from my Cistern as stray camels are driven away. I will call out them: “Come here!”but it will be said: “They changed after you were gone.” And I will say: “Away with you, away with you!”
3. Sins exits
Sahih Muslim 244:
It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “When a Muslim or a believer – perform wudu and washes his face, every sin that he looked at with his eyes comes out from his face with the water – or with the last drop of the water. When he washes his hands, every sin that he commited with his hands comes out from his hands with the water – or with the last drop of the water. When he washes his feet, every sin to which he walked with his feet comes out from his feet with the water or with the last drop of the water – until he emerges cleansed of sins.”
Sahih Muslim 255:
It was narrated that ‘Uthman bin Affan said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever performs wudu and performs wudu well, his sins comes out of body, even from beneath his nails.”
Ibn Majah 282:
It was narrated from Abdullah As-Sunabihi that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever performs ablution and rinses his mouth and nose, his sins will exit through his mouth and nose. When he washes his face, his sins will exit from his face, even from beneath his eyelids. When he washes his hands, his sins will exit from his hands. When he wipes his head, his sins will exit from his head, and even from his ears. When he washes his feet, his sins will exit from his feet, even from beneath his toenails. Then his prayer and his walking toward the mosque will earn extra merit for him.”
Sahih Bukhari 6433
Narrated Ibn Aban: I brought water to Uthman bin Affan to perform the ablution while he was sitting on his seat. He perofrmed ablution in a perfect way and said, “I saw the Prophet (peace be upon him) performing ablution in this place and he said perofrmed it in a perfect way and said, “Whoever performs ablution as I have performed this time and then proceeds to the mosque and offers a two rakat prayer and then sits there [waiting for the compulsory congregration salat (prayers)], then all his sins will be forgiven. ”
The Prophet (peace be upon him) further added, “Do not be conecited [thinking that your sins will be forgiven because of your Salat (prayers)].”
4. Half of Iman
Sahih Muslim 223, Tirmidhi 3517, Nasai 2437
It was narrated that Abu Malik Al-Ashari said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “Purification is half of faith,”Al-Hamdu Lilliah” fills the Balance and “Subhan-Allahi wal-hamd Lilliah” fill or fills – the space between heaven and earth. As Salat (prayers) is light, As Sadaqa (charity) is proof, As-Sabr (patience) is illumination and the Qur’an is evidence for you or against you. All people go out in the morning and sell themselves, either freeing themselves or condeming themselves.”
5. When one walks to masjid after wudu is made and finds it finished.
Abu Dawood 564:
Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever performs wudu and performs it well, then leaves (to the masjid) and finds that the people have already prayed, then Allah, the Mighty and Sublime, will give him the reward of the one who prayed and attended it (the congregation): no part of his reward will be diminished.”
6. Paradise becomes obligatory
Abu Dawood 906:
Uqbah bin Amir Al-Juhani said that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “No one performs the wudu having performed it well, and prays two rakats, while having full concentration of his heart and soul in them, except that Paradise becomes obligatory for him.”
7. Sins are forgiven after performing two rakat prayers.
Abu Dawood 905:
Zaid bin Khalid Al-Juhani reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whoever performed wudu and performed it well, then he prayed two rakats, without being distracted in them, he will have all his sins forgiven.”
Abu Dawood 774:
It was narrated that Abu Hurairah said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “When one of you performs ablution and does it well, then he comes to the mosque with no other motive but prayer and not seeking anything other than the prayer, he does not take one step but Allah raises him in status one degree thereby, and takes away one of his sins, until he enters the mosque. When he enters the mosque he is in a state of prayer so long as he is waiting for the prayer.”
What breaks wudu?
2. Urination (even drop of urine)
3. Passing wind
4. Eating camel meat (Ibn Majah 494, Sahih)
5. Loss of consciouness (deep sleep and insanity, for example)
6. Prostatic fluid and semen
7. Anything that comes out from anus
8. Touching private parts.