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Offline Adil Husain

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Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« on: July 25, 2012, 04:22:02 AM »
2:187(Yusuf Ali translation)
 Permitted to you, on the night of the fasts, is the approach to your wives.
They are your garments and ye are their garments. Allah knoweth what ye used to
do secretly among yourselves; but He turned to you and forgave you; so now
associate with them, and seek what Allah hath ordained for you, and eat and
drink, until the white thread of dawn appear to distinct from its black thread;
then complete your fast till the night appears;

Tafseer of Yusuf Ali :-
Till the night appears: From the actual practice of the Holy
Prophet, this is rightly interpreted to mean: "Till sunset."

The word Al-Layli  is translated by different translators as
Sahih international - Sunset
Muhsin Khan - Night fall
Pickthall - Nightfall
shakir - Till Night
Dr.Ghali - Night
Corpus.Quran.com/wordbyword.jsp - Night

Among south Asian Muslims , Iftaar is done just before Adhaan of Maghrib prayer , Before Actual blackening of the sky . Sky is dark blue  and stars and moon are not visible at that time.
What Should be done in a situation that  friends  and colleagues are calling to eat(Break the fast)  And Sky is not yet Black. Showing them verse 2:187 will be explained by Practices of Prophet written in Hadith and tafseers by them.

WHAT SHOULD BE DONE IN SUCH SITUATION  MAINTAINING OUR RELATIONS WITH HADITH FOLLOWER MUSLIMS ?
 

'I must strive for reformation of myself and the world'

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2012, 07:13:23 AM »
Salamun Alaikum Adil,

Please see the following article which shares my humble view on the matter from a Quranic perspective.

http://quransmessage.com/articles/fasting%20till%20night%20FM3.htm


Regards,
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Adil Husain

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2012, 05:28:08 PM »
salaam alaikum . Thank you sir.
'I must strive for reformation of myself and the world'

Offline Shahmatt

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2012, 05:49:31 PM »

Salaams.

I have come across this article regarding the definition of "layl" (night) as in the Quranic context.

http://www.quran-islam.org/articles/part_3/night_start_%28P1369%29.html

Your comments on this article would be greatly appreciated.

Offline Wakas

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Offline Shahmatt

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2012, 10:58:02 AM »
@ Wakas,

Thanks very much for the interesting article.

@ Joseph Islam,

Have you had the opportunity to look through this article?

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2012, 09:38:44 PM »
@ Joseph Islam,
Have you had the opportunity to look through this article?


Dear Shahmatt,

Salamun Alaikum

I assume that you refer to the article you have posted by A. Muhammad. If so, yes I have read this article before.

I respectfully find that there are many unwarranted assumptions in the article which I would find an unnecessary endeavour to contend with given that I have humbly presented my perspective in my article citing Quranic proof.

If God wanted to end fast at sunset, he would have used clear language to indicate this given the fact that the words 'sunset' or terms to describe it are clearly known to the Quran (maghrib al-shams 18:86, duluk e-shams (17:78)). However, they have never been used to indicate a fasts end. This is an uncomfortable fact for many, yet sadly it is brushed aside with nonchalance.

In my humble view, the Quran could not have used a more unambiguous word to describe the end of fast 'layl' (night), yet many articles appear to defend preconceived traditions masked in the guise of scholarly gloss and a Quranic view.

The start of fast is a matter of perception as is the end of fast.

"......and eat and drink, until the white thread of dawn appear to you distinct from its black thread. Then complete the fast till the night (Arabic: layl)..." 2:187 part

My humble perspective has been made clear in my article. It is respectfully up to the readers to analyse both sides of the argument and form their own opinions.

http://quransmessage.com/articles/fasting%20till%20night%20FM3.htm


I have sometimes felt that it is the precarious position of admitting that one's fasts were possibly opened before the allocated time (and perceivably falling foul of a whole day's effort) that at times incline some to find any method to support the existing practice of opening fasts at sunset (a confirmation bias). Whereas if a fast is kept a little longer than is required (even if the view is incorrect), one has naturally covered the period of the traditional fast anyway not falling foul of the possibility of opening it too early. Unless of course, one wants to make use of Islamic secondary sources as the traditionalists do which ascribe a sin to opening it up a moment too late forcing one to make a dash as soon as the sun sets and the call for prayer is heard. It seems from the circulation of such sources that there may have been a tradition which opened the fast a little later which was circulated to curtail it. God knows best.

Regards,
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Shahmatt

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2012, 05:12:01 PM »
Salaam,

Thank you for your reply. I had read your posted article a while back but somehow missed the bit on the "gradual movement into the night". My mistake. Sorry for the trouble.

I have also now read your article on the start of the fast.

Based on your articles I conclude the following, and also have the following new questions.

1. The time of Fajr start is most likely not intended to be the Astronomical Dawn which is difficult to perceive, but rather the Nautical Dawn. On this basis the present time of Fajr start is too early and should be a short while later.

2. Am I correct in understanding that the time at which Sehri ends is actually independent of the time of Fajr start. Have you learned if the description "the white thread of dawn appear to you distinct from its black thread" coincides with Fajr start? If so for practical purposes can we assume that these times are close enough to establish an end time for Sehri?

3. The time at which the fast ends is not at the time of Sunset or Isha prayers (when there is no light in the sky), but somewhere in between. That is, the sky need not be fully dark, but the first stars may begin to appear. I have found this article on "Nautical Twilight":

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twilight#Nautical_twilight

The article mentions that at the end of Civil Twilight (the start of Nautical Twilight) the stars may be visible. Can we approximate the time at which the fast may be ended is close to the "Nautical Twilight", as defined in this article?

4. Is there any Quranic support for the following of the community consensus over individual perception? For example assuming that the community (following Quran only) deems the time of Fajr start to be time of Astronomical Nautical Dawn, but you as an individual perceive that it is too dark outside and still wish to wait a little while longer.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2012, 08:32:50 PM »
Salamun Alaikum Shahmatt,

  • Yes indeed. Stopping Sehri in the name of religion when no light is perceptibly discernible in the sky is not in accordance to Quranic guidance. Nautical dawn would be more consistent with verse 2:187 to demarcate the end of sehri.
  • Yes. Salat al-Fajr (24:58) is described in other verses as being one part of two ends of the day (salata tarafayi 11:14). The night starts to conclude when the first light from the sun starts to be discernible in the sky which is from my perspective, perfectly reconcilable with end of Sehri and best understood as the start of Nautical Dawn.
  • Correct. I have noted stars to become visible at about 30 mins after sunset which generally coincides with the approximate start of 'nautical dusk' (end of civil twilight) in my area. Again, the verses are not intended to be an exact science, but for logistical purposes the start of nautical dusk (end of civil twilight) would be an appropriate guide (when stars start to appear 6:76).
  • Following traditions blindly when they have no Quranic support in the name of religion is arguably rebuked in multifaceted ways in the Quran, least alone by verse 17:36. However, community consensus or consultation should also not be inherently viewed as problematic unless it becomes dogmatic and does not allow for the admission of better evidence with a view to strive for a better Quranic way. In light of the latter sentiment, practice should also not fall foul of best Quranic guidance. Fasting is an individual matter as is prayer. It is not dependant solely on how society 'interprets' it. If extant practice conflicts with Quranic guidance, then it arguably needs to be curtailed.

I hope that helps, God willing.
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Wakas

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2012, 01:25:13 AM »
salaam Joseph, all,

Quote
'sunset' or terms to describe it are clearly known to the Quran (maghrib al-shams 18:86, duluk e-shams (17:78)

To clarify, "maghrib al-shams" does not mean "sunset", it means "setting-time/place (of) the sun". This can clearly be seen in 18:86 in which it says "...he reached maghrib al-shams, and he found it setting (imperfect, incomplete action, ongoing)....", i.e. it had not already set. Do you agree/disagree?

And as for "duluk e-shams (17:78)" I agree that it means "sunset". I dont see any problem for using "layl" as the beginning of "layl" is after sunset in my view. I think this timing is used because sawm ends then one begins their salat al 3sha - this way, they will be less distracted thinking about food etc.
Also, if you imply Quran could have used such a phrase if it meant sunset, please bear in mind you also say sbh/hmd with timing can mean the timed salat, even though it did not use this word.

Quote
Whereas if a fast is kept a little longer than is required (even if the view is incorrect), one has naturally covered the period of the traditional fast anyway not falling foul of the possibility of opening it too early.

In my view, it all boils down to sincerity, i.e. if a person is sincere and put in effort into understanding when to end sawm, then goes with the most probable answer, it does not matter if they get it wrong. God is Forgiving, Merciful, and knows best.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2012, 01:48:21 AM »
Salamun Alaikum Wakas.

With regards, 'maghrib al-shams', I humbly find that you 'may' have slightly missed the point which I have clearly elaborated in the quote you cite.

The point I humbly intended to impart was that the Quran is familiar with the verb 'gharaba' (to set) which is the stem verb from which 'yaghrubu' is formed. My point was, such terms are known to the Quran where it could have used the term 'ghurub' as it has used it in 20:130 and 50:39 to denote sunset. It could have used such a term clearly for the ending of fasting without any ambiguity. However, it simply did not. Instead, it used the word 'layl' (night).

Hence why I said:

Quote
'sunset' or terms to describe it are clearly known to the Quran (maghrib al-shams 18:86, duluk e-shams (17:78)'

With utmost respect dear brother, if you are kindly going to raise an academic contention, please may I kindly suggest that you appreciate the context in which an evidence has been cited.

After citing the reference in my article, I clearly elucidated that:

Quote
"The word 'maghriba' comes from its root word 'Ghurub' (G-R-B) which inherently means to retire, to depart, to be hidden from view or to be absent. Used along with 'shams' (sun) it refers to sunset, or the west which is clearly the setting place of the sun"

I respectfully note your agreement with my humble interpretation of 'duluk e-shams' as a viable reference to 'sunset'.

Finally, the point of sincerity was never in dispute. The intention is merely to give one's best view from a Quranic perspective. It is always the responsibility of the recipient to discern, assess its merit and act accordingly. In the end, only God can judge.

Regards,
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Shahmatt

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #11 on: August 11, 2012, 02:27:47 AM »
Btw. Thanks very much for clarifying my concerns.

All this is very interesting.

Do you have any guesses on what may have caused this variation from Quranic practice to have happened in history?

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #12 on: August 11, 2012, 02:40:49 AM »
Do you have any guesses on what may have caused this variation from Quranic practice to have happened in history?

Dear Shahmatt,

Salamun Alaikum.

I personally always leave such matters of ‘zann’ (assumptions) and ‘shak’ (doubt) aside when seeking best guidance as a believer to implement going forward.

From a purely academic perspective, I would be inclined to posit many suggestions. However, it would remain at best open to mere surmise.

However, the 'Shia', (despite all their other unquranic allegiances and theological assertions which remain unwarranted from a Quranic perspective) would argue, there is no alteration in their practice from the time of the Prophet and continue to open fast some time after sunset. It is just an observation and not intended to be admitted as evidence for support. The Quran has the final say and remains sufficient warrant.

Regards,
Joseph.

'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline sahibul

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2012, 12:10:16 PM »
Salamun alaikum,
Verse 2:187 should be read together with 17:78. Meaning, pray first before you break your fast.
Furthermore, the obligatory solat must be performed at fixed time as evidenced by this verse:
"So when you have finished the prayer remember Allah standing and sitting and reclining. But when you are secure, from danger, keep up (regular) prayer. Prayer indeed has been enjoined on the believers at fixed times." 4:103.

As for the start of the fast, it should be read, "eat and drink until you can distinct between the white and black thread at dawn." (2:187).

Why don't you tie a white thread and a black thread side by side. Switch off the lights. Then at dawn, try and observe the two threads. See if you can distinguish them. The start of the fast should be when you are able to distinguish between the black and white thread.

Don't just take my word for it. Try it yourself.

Salam.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Correct Time of Iftaar( breaking of the fast in Evening)
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2012, 10:05:12 PM »
Dear Sahibul,

Peace to you and welcome to the forum :)

I do agree with you that prayer times are enjoined on believers at certain parts of the day (4:103). I would also concur with you (albeit for possibly different reasons) that naturally given the time of opening the fast [1] which is a little after sunset that one would read their Maghrib prayers before opening their fasts.

However, in my personal opinion and with respect, I would find your interpretation of a literal black and white thread as an object for discernment supported by secondary sources and not ipso facto by the Quran. I find the 'minal'fajri' (of dawn) referring to the abyadu (white) from the khayti (thread) al-aswad (the black) of the perception of the sky and not a physical thread. I find this the better explanation given the preposition 'min' which prefixes 'fajri'.

However once again personally, I do find your acceptance of physical prayers as part of God's ordained religion refreshing. Much of my discourses at times are spent putting my arguments forth in favour of a physical salat against those (especially some Quranists) that assert that the physical salat is an invention.

Once again, welcome to the forum and peace.

Your brother in faith,
Joseph.

REFERENCES:

[1] FASTING IS PRESCRIBED UNTIL NIGHT NOT SUNSET
http://quransmessage.com/articles/fasting%20till%20night%20FM3.htm
[2] TIME OF FAJR AND THE END OF SEHRI IN THE MONTH OF RAMADAN
http://quransmessage.com/articles/fasting%20and%20ramadan%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell