|Fataawa - June 24 2005|
|Islam - Fataawa|
|Written by Administrator|
|Friday, 24 June 2005 08:00|
Question: A person is told that he has to have an operation, and if he decides not to undergo the operation then he will die. If he has the operation, then there is a very good chance that he will live. If he declines the operation, will this be considered suicide?
Answered by Sheikh Mûhammad al-Ghâmidî, professor at King Khâlid University A surgical operation is a form of medical treatment.
Scholars disagree about the ruling on medical treatments when they are a necessity for the patient. Some say it is obligatory to undergo a medical treatment if one's life depends on it. Others are of the opinion that it is not obligatory.
Some of the prominent scholars of the past have divided medical treatments into those that are preferable, those that are compulsory, and those that are forbidden. A medical treatment, according to them, becomes compulsory if the person's life depends on it. It takes the same ruling as eating pork or carrion to stave off starvation.
Therefore, since this person was informed by his doctors of the seriousness of his condition and that failure to undergo the operation will result in his death, and that the operation is likely to be a success, then we prefer to say it is obligatory upon him to undergo the operation. In doing so, he is saving a human life.
However, we cannot go so far as to say that he is committing suicide if he refuses to undergo the operation. He will be committing a sin, but not as severe a sin as the one who commits suicide. And Allah knows best.
Praying Maghrib Behind an Imam Who is Praying ‘Isha
Question: Can a person pray Maghrib behind an imam who is praying `Ishâ’ or vice versa? Can a person pray an obligatory prayer behind an imam who is praying a voluntary prayer?
Answered by Sheikh Fahd `Abd al-Rahmân Al-Mishal, professor at al-Imâm University
Scholars disagree regarding whether or not the imam and the one following him can have the intention to pray two different obligatory prayers.
The majority of scholars from the Hanafî, Malikî and Hanbalî schools of law hold the view that it is not lawful for the imam and the follower to be praying different obligatory prayers.
The Shafi`î school of law, as well as the scholars Ibn Taymiyyah, Sheikh Muhammad b. Ibrâhîm , `Abd `Azîz b. Baz and Muhammad b. `Uthaymîn believe it is lawful to do so in consideration of the generality of the evidence, and based on the principle that there is no harm if there is a difference of intention between the imam and the one who prays behind him.
For example: If you pray `Isha’ behind an imam praying Maghrib you should pray one more unit after completing the three units. But, if you pray Maghrib behind an imam praying `Isha’ then you have to wait upon completing the third unit until the imam completes his fourth unit, then you complete your prayer by saying salam with him. In this way, your salam will be after the imam’s and you gain the reward of congregational prayer.
Sheikh Bin Baz sees no harm if there is difference in intention between imam and the followers regarding whether the prayer is obligatory or voluntary. The imam may be praying a voluntary prayer while someone who wants to pray an obligatory prayer can follow him.
[For further information see Majmû’ Fatawâ Sheikh `Abd `Aziz b. Baz (12/178) and al-Sharh al-Mumti` by Sheikh Ibn `Uthaymîn (4/364)]
Imam Does Not Have Wudu
Question: What happens when an imam realizes in the middle of a prayer that he is leading that he forgot to perform wudû’?
Answered by Sheikh `Abd al-Wahhâb al-Turayrî, former professor at al-Imâm University in Riyadh
If the imam realizes that he is not in a state of purity during the prayer, he should leave his place and appoint another man from the ranks to step forward and lead the prayer.
All of the worshippers should continue the same prayer in congregation behind the new imam. Their prayer will be still valid. And Allah knows best.
Alcohol in Vanilla Flavoring
Question: In vanilla flavoring and many other flavorings there is alcohol. I am not sure of the percentage. These flavorings are used in icecream and many other processed foods and beverages. So can we eat these things?
Answered by the Fatwa Department Research Committee - chaired by Sheikh `Abd al-Wahhâb al-Turayrî
Sheikh Salman al-Oadah states the following:
Alcohol is forbidden because it intoxicates. The exact percentage of alcohol in a food or beverage has no effect on the ruling. The ruling applies to the food or beverage itself taken as a whole and not to its composition. Anyway, such small percentages of alcohol generally do not have any affect on a person who consumes the product.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Whatever intoxicates in large quantities, then a small quantity of it is forbidden.” [Sunan al-Tirmidhî (1865), Sunan Abî Dâwûd (3681), Sunan al-Nasâ’î (5607), Sunan Ibn Mâjah (3392), and Musnad Ahmad (5648)]
As long as the food or beverage in question does not intoxicate even when large quantities are consumed, then it is not prohibited.
The only other possible objection that might be raised against such a product is that alcohol is considered an impure substance according to many scholars. However, it is an established principle in Islamic Law that minute quantities of an impurity that are completely submerged in pure substances do not make those pure substances impure. The quantity of alcohol in such a product is generally so minute as to be effectively non-existent as far as matters of purification are concerned. And Allah knows best.
The Reward for Taking In Orphans
What are the reward and honor of patronizing an orphan?
Answered by the Association of Muslim Jurists in America (AMJA)
A patron of an orphan is a companion of the Messenger of Allah, prayers and peace of Allah be upon him, in Paradise. Al-Bukhari has put a whole chapter in his “Sahih”, under the title: “The Merits for who Patronizes an Orphan”, in which he reported a Hadith narrated by Sahl Ibn Sa’ad that the Prophet, prayers and peace of Allah be upon him, said that: “I and the patron of an orphan are in Paradise like this”, with pointing his two index and middle fingers together. It is more significant if these orphans are brought from Muslim countries after being exposed to general calamities and natural disasters, and it is dreaded that Muslims would be reluctant to sponsor them, which would result into absorption by non-Muslims, and hence being taken away from the religion of Islam and worshipping other than Allah.
Is a Doctor Liable for the Death of a Patient?
Question: If a patient dies due to the professional negligence of a doctor, is it considered murder, provided the doctor did not intend to kill the patient?
Answered by Sheikh `Abd al-Rahmân al-Jar`î, professor at King Khâlid University in Abhâ Any death resulting from the professional negligence of a doctor is deemed to be an unintentional killing. The doctor has to pay compensation (diyah) to the inheritors of the deceased, either on his own or with the help of his family. The doctor has to atone for the killing by either freeing a Muslim slave or by fasting two consecutive months.
Allah says: “It is not for a believer to kill a believer unless (it be) by mistake. He who hath killed a believer by mistake must set free a believing slave, and pay the blood-money to the family of the slain, unless they remit it as a charity…And whoever has not the wherewithal (to free a slave) must fast two consecutive months, a penance from Allah. Allah is Knowing, Wise.” [Sûrah al-Nisâ’: 92]
As for the death of a patient that is not a result of professional negligence, but is a natural consequence of an inherently dangerous operation or the seriousness of the patient's condition, then the doctor is not liable. And Allah knows best.
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