Reminder the importance of fasting six days of Shawwal
In the Name of Allâh, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
Ramadan 1434 Hijriah has come to its end. Yet again it seems that every year it comes and goes as fast as a speeding train. May Allah accept our prayers, sujud, fasting and supplications of all the Muslims.
I just want to remind our sisters & brothers the importance of fasting the 6 days of Shawwal. As we know, the 6 shawwal fasts are like divine bargains. In shops we get ‘buy one get one free’ offers which we leap on, but who gives you ‘buy one get ten free’? Six simple fasts and you have a year of reward. What an offer, SubhanAllah!
Some of my friends ask about should we fast the miss up of fasting Ramadan first or we should fast the 6 days of Shawwal?.
Sayyidina Abu Ayyub al-Ansari (may Allah be pleased with him) relates that Rasulullah Shalallahu ‘alayhi wasallam said: “Whoever fasts Ramadan, then follows it with six days from Shawwal, it is like they fasted the entire year.” (Narrated by: Muslim no: 1164)
Based on this and other hadiths, majority of the jurists (fuqaha), including the Hanafi, Shafi’i and Hanbali Schools, hold that it is recommended to fast six days of the month of Shawwal. (See: Radd al-Muhtar, Mughni al-Muhtaj and Kashshaf al-Qina’).
There is nothing wrong, as far as Islam is concerned, in making a double intention by fasting the missed days of obligatory fasting in Ramadan as well as fasting the optional six days of Shawwal. However, some Muslim jurists state that it is recommended to make up for the missed fasts separately from fasting the six days of Shawwal so as to get extra reward. (Sheikh `Atiyyah Saqr, former head of Al-Azhar Fatwa Committee)
As for combining two intentions, i.e. making-up missed Ramadhan fasts (qadha) and the six fasts of Shawwal, one should principally make an intention of Qadha (miss up fasting Ramadan). Thereafter, as a ‘secondary’ intention, one may also keep in mind that it is the month of Shawwal. By doing so, it is hoped from the mercy of Allah that along with the missed fasts being made-up, one will receive the reward of fasting in Shawwal. But, it is important that the main and predominant intention is of making-up the missed fasts.
However, it is better that one makes up for the missed fasts separately from fasting the six days of Shawwal, since some scholars are of the view that one does not receive the reward of optional (nafl) fasting when combined with make-up (qadha) fasts. (See: Fatawa Darul Uloom Deoband 6/495) .
Allah is great and merciful…He is the One who knows what is in our hearts and souls. Don’t forget to fast 6 days of shawwal.
Allah knows best.