Obligatory Ritual Baths

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Obligatory Ritual Baths

There are seven obligatory baths:

(1) Bath for sexual ritual impurity (Janabah)

(2) Bath for menstruation (Haydh)

(3) Bath for lochia (Nifas)

(4) Bath for irregular menstrual bleeding (Istihadha)

(5) Bath for touching a dead body (Mass-ul-Mayyit)

(6) Funeral bath for a dead person (Mayyit)

(7) Bath which becomes obligatory on account of a vow or an oath to perform it.

Rules Relating to Sexual Ritual Impurity (Janabah)

Rule No.344: A person enters the state of sexual ritual impurity (Janabah) in two ways:

(1) Sexual intercourse

(2) Discharge of semen, while sleeping or when awake, small quantity or more, with lust or otherwise, voluntarily or involuntarily.

Rule No.345: When one cannot ascertain whether the fluid emitted from one's body is semen, urine or something else, it will be treated as semen if it comes out with swiftness and lust and if the body is relaxed. If all or some of these signs are not present the fluid will not be treated as semen. In the case of illness, the fluid may not come out with sudden swiftness; but if the emission takes place with lust and it relaxes the body, it will be treated as semen.

Rule No.346: If a fluid emitted by a healthy person possesses one of the three signs mentioned above and he does not know whether or not it also possessed other signs, and if before the emission he was with ablution, he will content himself with that ablution. And if he was not with ablution, it would be sufficient for him to perform ablution only, and Bath would not be necessary.

Rule No.347: It is recommended (mustahab) that a person should urinate after the seminal discharge. If he did not urinate and an emission was seen after the ritual bath, which could not been determined to be semen or anything else, it would be treated as semen.

Rule No.348: If a person has sexual intercourse with a woman and the male organ enters either of the private parts of the woman up to the point of circumcision or more, both of them enter in the state of sexual ritual impurity (janabah), regardless of whether they are adults or minors and whether ejaculation takes place or not.

Rule No.349: If a person doubts whether or not his penis penetrated up to the point of circumcision, the ritual bath will not become obligatory on him.

Rule No.350: If (God forbid!) a person has sexual intercourse with an animal and ejaculates, a ritual bath alone will be sufficient for him, and if he does not ejaculate and he was with ablution at the time of committing the unnatural act, even then the bath will be sufficient for him. However, if he was not with ablution at that time, the obligatory precaution is that he should have the ritual bath and also perform ablution. And if one commits sodomy, the ritual bath is obligatory on him.

Rule No.351: If movement of seminal fluid is felt but not emitted, or if a person doubts whether or not semen has been ejaculated, the ritual bath will not be obligatory upon him.

Rule No.352: A person who is unable to perform the ritual bath, but can perform dry ablution, is allowed to have sexual intercourse with his wife even after the time for daily prayers has set in.

Rule No.353: If a person observes semen on his dress and knows that it is his own, and he has not had the ritual bath on that account, he should do so, and repeat as Qadha all those prayers about which he is certain that he offered after the discharge of semen. However, it is not necessary for him to repeat those prayers about which there is a probability that he might have offered them before the discharge of semen.

Prohibited Acts to Those in Sexual Ritual Impurity

Rule No.354: The following five things are prohibited for those in the state of sexual ritual impurity:

(1) To touch, with any part of one's body, the script of the holy Qur'an or the Name of Almighty Allah in whichever language it may be. And it is better that the names of the holy Prophet and Imams and Hazrat Fatima Zahra (peace be upon them all) should also not be touched in that condition, and it is prohibited if this violates the sanctity.

(2) Entering Masjid-ul-Haram or Masjid-ul-Nabi, even though it may be only passing from one gate and going out of another.

(3) To stay or halt in all mosques, and similarly, on the basis of obligatory precaution, to stay in the shrines of the holy Imams (A.S.). However, there is no harm if one crosses or passes through a mosque, entering from one gate and exiting from another except Masjid-ul-Haram or Masjid-ul-Nabi.

(4) To enter a mosque with an intention of lifting away something or placing something in it.

(5) To recite those verses of the holy Qur'an which necessitate prostration. These verses occur in four chapters of the holy Qur'an:

· Alif Lam Meem As-Sajdah (chapter No. 32), verse No. 15

· Ha Meem Sajdah (chapter No. 41), verse No. 38

· Al-Najm (chapter No. 53), verse No. 62

· Al-`Alaq (chapter No. 96), verse No. 19

Things Which are Hateful (Makrooh) for Those in Sexual Ritual Impurity

Rule No.355: The following nine things are hateful (makrooh) for those in the state of sexual ritual impurity:

(1) To eat

(2) To drink

But if the person in sexual ritual impurity washes his or her face, hands and mouth, or performs ablution, then eating and drinking will not be hateful (makrooh).

(3) To recite more than seven verses of the holy Qur'an other than those in which obligatory prostration occur (in which case reciting them will be forbidden).

(4) To touch the cover, the margin or border of the holy Qur'an or the space between its lines, with any part of one's body.

(5) To keep the holy Qur'an with oneself.

(6) To sleep. But it would not be hateful (makrooh) to sleep if the person concerned performs ablution or performs dry ablution instead of a ritual bath on account of unavailability of water.

(7) To dye one's hair with powder of myrtle leaves (henna) etc.

(8) To apply oil on one's body.

(9) To have sexual intercourse after a ‘wet dream’ (Ihtilam), i.e. discharge of semen during sleep.

The ritual bath for sexual ritual impurity

Rule no.356. The ritual bath for sexual ritual impurity is itself a recommended act, but it is obligatory for offering the daily prayers and other similar acts of worship. However, it is not obligatory for the funeral prayers or for prostration of thanksgiving or for the obligatory prostration upon reciting the four particular verses of the holy Qur'an. As an obligatory precaution, offering prostration of inadvertence is not valid without purity.

Rule no.357. At the time of having the ritual bath, it is not necessary to have in mind that one is performing an obligatory bath. It is sufficient if one performs the bath with the intention of Qurbah, i.e. complying with Allah's orders.

Rule no.358. To perform the bath with the intention of obligation before or after the time of prayer sets in, is correct and valid.

Rule no.359. There are two methods of performing ritual baths, whether they are obligatory or recommended:

(1) Sequential bath (tarteebi)

(2) Bath by immersion (irtamasi)

Sequential bath

Rule no.360. A person should first wash one's head and neck, and thereafter the remaining parts of one's body. It is better that one washes the right part of the body first and then the left part.

And if a person washes the body before washing the head, either intentionally or on account of forgetfulness or because of not knowing the rule, the ritual bath is void.

Rule no.361. In order to ensure that all the parts (head, neck and remaining parts of the body) have been washed thoroughly, one should, while washing a part, also include some adjacent portions of the other part with it.

Rule no.362. After the bath, if a person realises that a certain part of the body has been left out, not knowing which, it will not be necessary to wash the head again. One will wash only that part of one's body which one feels had not been washed.

Rule no.363. If one realises after the bath that one has not washed a certain part of the body, it is sufficient to wash only that part if it is the left side. However, if that part is the right side then the obligatory precaution is that after washing that part of the body one should wash the left side again. And if the unwashed part is that of head and neck one should, after washing that part, wash the body once again.

Rule no.364. If a person doubts before completing the ritual bath whether one has washed a part on the left or right side, it will be necessary to wash that part, and if one doubts about having washed a part of the head and neck then, his doubt is of no importance and his bath is valid.

Bath by immersion

Rule no.365. If the bath by immersion is to be done, then it is necessary that water must reach all parts of the body at one time. So if someone submerged his body in water with the intention of ritual bath, and if his feet are on the ground he must raise them up.

Rule no.366. If one wishes to perform the ritual bath by way of immersion, as an obligatory precaution, when he makes the intention of bath, some part of his body should be out of water.

Rule no.367. If after performing the bath by way of immersion, it becomes known that water has not reached some part of the body one should repeat the bath, whether the part up to which water has not reached is determined or not.

Rule no.368. If one does not have sufficient time for sequential bath, one should perform the bath by way of immersion.

Rule no.369. A person who has observed a fixed fast (such as the fast of the month of Ramadhan or that of another specific date obligated by way of vow, etc.) or put on Ihram for Hajj or Umrah is not allowed to perform the bath by way of immersion. However, if one performs it forgetfully, the bath will be valid.

Rules relating to the ritual bath

Rule no.370. As a precaution, it is necessary that the entire body of a person should be pure before the bath, sequential or by immersion.

Rule no.371. If a person who entered the state of sexual ritual impurity (janabah) due to an unlawful act takes a bath with warm water, the bath will be valid even though one may perspire at that time. But the recommended precaution is that such a person should do bath with cold water.

Rule no.372. While taking a bath, if a part of the body, however small, remains unwashed the bath is invalid. But, it is not obligatory to wash the inside of the ear or nose and other places which are considered to be the interior of the body.

Rule no.373. If a person doubts whether a particular part of the body is to be treated as external or internal, and if previously it was an external part and later it is doubted whether it is external or internal, then it is obligatory to wash it, otherwise washing is not necessary .

Rule no.374. If the hole pierced for an earring and other similar objects is so wide that it is reckoned to be external, then it should be washed; otherwise it is not necessary to wash it.

Rule no.375. All things which prevent water from reaching the body should be removed. If a person takes the bath before ensuring that such obstacles have been removed, the bath will be void.

Rule no.376. At the time of the bath, if one doubts whether there is something on one's body which would prevent water from reaching the body, one should investigate and satisfy oneself that the obstacle is not there.

Rule no.377. While taking the bath, it is obligatory to wash the short as well the long hair of body.

Rule no.378. All the conditions for the validity of ablution (e.g. the water being pure and not having been usurped) also apply to the validity of the ritual bath. However, for the bath it is not necessary that the body be washed downwards from the head. Moreover, it is not necessary in sequential bath to wash the body immediately after washing the head and the neck. There is no harm, therefore, if there is a lapse of some time after washing one's head and neck before washing one's body. However, if a person is incontinent, unable to retain urine or faeces except for such time that he could be able to offer prayers after the bath then he should take the bath at once and offer his prayers immediately thereafter.

Rule no.379. If a person uses a public bath with an intention of deferring payment to its owner, without the prior consent of the owner, the bath will be void even if the owner later agrees to the arrangement.

Rule no.380. If the owner of the public bath has agreed to the bath being done on credit basis, but the person taking the bath intends not to pay the charges to him or to pay him from the money acquired illegally, the bath will be void.

Rule no.381. If a person pays to the owner of the public bath from the amount whose Khums has not been paid, then such a person commits a sinful act, but the bath will be valid, though the liability for Khums remains.

Rule no.382. If a person hires a public bath for taking his ritual bath, but before commencing the bath, he or she carries out an extra function of making the anal part pure with the same water of the public bath, and if it becomes doubtful whether the owner would agree to the bath being taken, then the owner's consent must be sought before the bath. Otherwise, the bath will be void.

Rule no.383. When a person is in doubt whether he or she has performed the ritual bath, such a person must take a bath. However, if he doubts after the bath as to whether bath was correct or not, then there is no need to have the bath again.

Rule no.384. If while having the bath one does any act which would invalidate the ablution, for example urinating, then one has to abandon the bath and start all over again. If one performs sequential bath then, one will have to do ablution also, as a precaution.

Rule no.385. A person’s obligation is to perform dry ablution due to the very short time at his disposal, but if he takes a ritual bath under the impression that there is sufficient time for his bath and for offering prayers, the bath will be valid, provided that it was done with the intention of complying with the orders of Allah. Even if the bath was taken with a view to offering the prayer, the bath will be valid.

Rule no.386. If a person after entering the state of sexual ritual impurity doubts whether or not he or she took a bath, and whether he found it probable that he was concerned or not about his state at the time of starting the prayer, in both cases the prayers he offered are deemed valid. But for the later prayers, such a person should have the bath. If any such act which would invalidate ablution is committed after the prayers, then it will be necessary to do ablution, and repeat the prayers if time permits.

Rule no.387. A person who has more than one bath to take, he can have one bath with the combined intention of all the baths. In fact, one bath with the intention of sexual ritual purification is enough to represent all others.

Rule no.388. If a verse of the holy Qur'an or Name of the Almighty Allah is written or tattooed on the body of a person then such a person while doing ablution or bath will be required to pour water on that part without touching the writing. As an obligatory precaution, it is not permissible to write the words of the holy Qur'an or Name of the Almighty Allah, prophets or imams, and if they are written on the body, he must erase them.

Rule no.389. A person who takes the bath of sexual ritual impurity (janabah) should not do ablution for the prayers. All other baths, whether obligatory or recommended, except the bath of sexual ritual impurity is not enough for prayer, and performing ablution is necessary for prayer.