general rules to fasting

Q:  Assalamu aleikun, Sheikh Mehtar,
Thank you in advance for answering my questions.  This will be my first year to observe Ramadan.  It is not my desire to be a “cafeteria Muslim” to pick and choose which parts of the faith to observe and which guidelines to follow.  My questions regarding Ramadan  are:  1)is drinking of water allowable during the day light hours of Ramadan?  2)In regards to health issues – if sugar levels must be maintained – is it allowable to partake of small amounts of orange juice (or other sugar producing items) during the daylight hours?  3)With my employment, we at times have luncheon meetings – where lunch is a part of the meeting.  Rather than to draw criticism toward Islam, would it be better for me to extend the length of Ramadan by one day?

Thank you for all the patience you have with me while I learn the things that Allah desires for me to learn.  Islam has brought so much peace and happiness to my life.

A: وعليكم السلام ورحمة الله وبركاته
I am glad to hear from you. It makes me very happy that you are willing to do the correct thing at all times. You make us proud of you.
A1)One cannot consume anything while fasting. To intentionally drink even a sip of water would not be permissible.
A2) If one has a health condition that prohibits them from fasting, they should not fast. One must give fidya (a type of compensation) for the fast that could not be done. However, later on, when the ill condition eliminates itself, or during winter months when the days are shorter, one can do a make up for what has been missed.
A3) At the luncheon if you are able to fast, then merely excuse yourself by saying: i would love to eat, however, i am undergoing a condition that minimizes what i can and cannot consume.
I do understand that fasting, praying etc. can be a challenge, gradually, as you get accustomed to it, things would turn out for the best, Ameen.
As a new Muslim, go easy, gain a good grasp and always be your best.
(The above has been dictated by the Imaam)

Allah Certainly Knows Best.

One response to “general rules to fasting

  1. .Alhamdu-lillah. Ramadan Congrats (Khareem). It is sometimes difficult to navigate your beliefs as a minority faith in a state with one major faith. Obviously, the first time and many more times in the future, it is difficult to explain to others that you are Muslim because they knew you when you were not. However, people are very understanding and EVERY faith has a component of fasting so, the idea of fasting will not be something too new for people. Those who understand will respect you for fasting, those who do not, well maybe are not your peers anyways. I usually have much self control and can sit in a meeting while they are eating and have no problem; it will take time for you maybe because it is new for you and your body but, you will get the true blessings of Ramadan by fasting in this month and not delaying your fasts. Not everything in life or faith comes easy; think of those Muslims in countries without regular water, food, shelter or air conditioning and you will manage just fine. May Allah (swt) give you strength. Ameen. Do stick with the Imam’s advice of your health; guidelines are in place for us to know when we cannot fast. Allah (swt) is Compassionate and Merciful.