Things that do not break the fast
1. To eat or drink something unintentionally.
2. A mosquito, fly or any other object going down the throat unintentionally.
3. Water entering the ears.
4. Dust or dirt going down the throat.
5. Swallowing one’s OWN saliva.
6. Taking an injection.
7. Applying of antimony and collyrium (Surma/Kohl) into the eyes.
8. Taking a bath to keep cool.
9. Rubbing oil onto the body or hair.
10. To vomit unintentionally.
11. Applying perfume. It is NOT permitted to inhale the smoke of incense (Lobaan or Agarbatti) whilst fasting. It is also NOT permitted to smoke cigarettes or inhale its smoke.
12. Brushing the teeth without tooth paste e.g. using a Miswaak, etc.
13. A dream which makes taking a shower WAAJIB (necessary) does NOT break the Fast.
Things Makrooh (undesirable) while fasting
1. To chew gum, rubber, plastic items or other such things.
2. To taste any article of food or drink and spit it out.
3. To collect one’s saliva in the mouth and then to swallow it trying to quench thirst.
4. To delay a bath that has become FARDH (compulsory) knowingly until after Subha Sadiq (true dawn).
5. To use tooth paste to clean one’s teeth. If the paste goes down the throat, then it will nullify the fast. It is allowed to clean with a Miswaak (tooth stick).
6. To complain of hunger and thirst.
7. To take the water too much up the nostrils when cleaning the nose.
8. To gargle more than necessary.
9. To quarrel, argue, use filthy or indecent words.
10. To backbite, tell a lie and swear etc. are sinful acts even when one is not fasting. Therefore they become even worse when fasting.
Things that break one’s fast
Things that break one’s fast are of two kinds: Some make only Qadha necessary whilst others make both Qadha and Kaffarah compulsory.
1. Qadha: To keep one fast in place of the one that breaks, or is broken intentionally.
2. Kaffarah: To keep one fast after another for sixty days CONTINUOUSLY. However, if a person is unable to keep these 60 fasts for some valid reason e.g. continuous sickness, then one has the option of choosing from one of the following four:
1. Feed sixty poor people to their fill for two meals, or
2. Feed one poor person two meals a day for sixty days; or
3. Give 60 poor persons 3 1/2 Ibs. (approx. l.6kg of wheat or its value in cash or food grains)
4. Give to one poor person not less than 3 1/2 Ibs. of wheat, rice or food grains, etc. to its value or cash for sixty days.
Things that break one’s fast but make only Qadha Wajib
1. Anything put by force into the mouth of a fasting person and it goes down the throat.
2. Water going down the throat whilst gargling and being conscious of one’s fasting.
3. To vomit mouthful intentionally or to return vomit down the throat.
4. Swallowing intentionally a pebble, piece of paper or any item that is not used as food or medicine.
5. Swallowing something edible, equal to or bigger than a gram of grain which was stuck between the teeth. However if the edible is first taken out of the mouth and then swallowed, it will break the fast whether it is smaller or bigger than the size of a gram of grain.
6. Putting oil into the ear.
7. Inhaling snuff into the nostrils.
8. Swallowing the blood from the gums if the color of the blood is more than the saliva with which it is mixed.
9. To eat and drink forgetting that one is fasting and thereafter thinking that the fast is broken, to eat and drink again intentionally.
10. To eat and drink after Subha Sadiq or to break the fast before sunset due to a cloudy sky or a faulty watch etc. and then realizing one’s fault.
Note: Any fast other than a Ramadhan one whether broken intentionally or with a valid reason, makes ONLY Qadha WAJIB. There is NO Kaffarah for breaking any fast besides that of Ramadhan.
Things that make both Qadha and Kaffarah Wajib
1. Intentionally eating, drinking or breaking the fast in any other manner e.g. smoking, etc. without a valid reason, will make both Qadha and Kaffarah necessary.
2. Applying antimony and collyrium (Surma/Kohl) into the eye or rubbing oil on the head and then thinking that the fast is broken, to eat and drink again intentionally.
3. To drink any kind of medicine intentionally when there is no urgent need for it. (Note: INJECTION is permitted in all circumstances whether there is an urgent need for it or not.)
Compiled with editing from, “Taleemul Haq”