SECTION ONE: 1. That Which is Permissible For Purification. 2. Types of Water. 3. When Water Becomes Used. 4. That Which Is Not Permissible For Ablution. 5. That Which overwhelms The Water.

كِتَابُ الطَّهَارَةِ

The Chapter Of ‘Purification

مَا يَجُوْزُ التَّطْهِيْرُ بِهِ مِنَ الْمِيَاهِ

That Which Is Permissible For Purification

الْمِيَاهُ الَّتِي يَجُوزُ التَّطْهِيرُ بها سَبْعَةُ مِيَاهٍ

مَاءُ السَّمَاءِ وَمَاءُ الْبَحْرِ وَمَاءُ النَّهْر وَمَاءُ الْبِئْرِ وَمَاءُ الثَّلْج وَمَاءُ الْبَرَدِ وَمَاءُ الْعَيْنِ

Rain water, ocean water, river water. Water from wells. Water from melted snow.

Hail water upon melting, and spring water. This is due to the saying of Allah [He

(Allah) caused rain to descend from the heaven, to clean you therewith];’ and also

due to the words of the Prophet ((Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him))

[Water is pure and is not rendered impure by anything, except a thing that alters

its colour, taste or smell]. In addition there are the words of the Prophet ((God

bless him and give him peace)) regarding rivers (Its water is pure and the dead

things in it are permissible].

أَقْسَامُ الْمِيَاهِ

The Types Of Water

ثُمَّ الْمِيَاهُ عَلَى خَمْسَةِ أَقْسَامٍ

Water is divided into five types

الْأَوَّلُ طَاهِرٌ مُطَهِّرٌ غَيْرُ مَكْرُوْهٍ وَهُوَ الْمَاءُ الْمُطْلَقُ

The first type is water that is pure in itself, and is purifying for other things.

There is no dislike in using this type of water, which is plain water commonly

termed mutlaq water. This means that the essence of the water is pure and that it

can cleanse other things.

وَالثَّانِيْ طَاهِرٌ مُطَهِّرٌ مَكْرُوْهٌ وَهُوَ مَا شَرِبَتْ مِنْهُ الْهِرَّةُ وَنَحْوُهَا

2/ The second type is water that is pure in itself and is purifying for other things, although it is disliked to use because it is a small quantity of water that a cat or a similar animal has drunk from.

The term tahara (purification) is used in the Arabic language as cleanliness, regardless whether il be in reference to something physical or spiritual. Allah the Exalted said (Take from their wealth so that you might purify and sanctify thern). (Quran: 9;103]. The term tahara in its juristic sense means: The ruling given to the place where prayer is concerned (place — meaning, one’s body, clothes and area where one prays), the cause being clean water or clean earth which is deemed suitable for tayammum when there is no water. [Nur al-Idah].

وَالثَّالِثُ طَاهِرٌ غَيْرُ مُطَهِّرٌ وَهُوَ مَا اِسْتُعْمِلَ لِرَفْعِ حَدَثٍ أَوْ لِقُرْبَةٍ كَالْوُضُوْءِ وَنَحْوِهِ

3/ The third type is water that is pure in itself, though is not purifying for other things. This is water that one has used to remove his minor impurity (either through the process of wudu or bathing) or water used to make wudu upon with the intention of attaining the pleasure of God. Verily, if a person already in the state of wudu renews his wudu without intending the pleasure or nearness of God, it is classified as wastage because one is already in wudu. In addition, when making wudu upon wudu for the purpose of closeness to God, the second wudu must be made at a different place to that of the first, otherwise it is regarded as wastage (even if one intended nearness to God). If one makes wudu upon wudu in the same place, it is disliked and the water from the second wudu is not regarded as used water [musta‘mal].

Moreover, nearness to God can be achieved by washing the hands before and after eating given that the Prophet said “Wudu (the intended meaning is — the washing of the hands) is a blessing prior to eating.”’ Therefore, if one washes his hands in the state of wudu and intended nearness to God, the water is deemed used {musta ‘mal]. If nearness to God is not the objective, the water is not deemed used.’ Furthermore, used water [musta‘mad] is fit for the purification of physical filth {najasa hagigiyya] from the body or clothes, such as urine, pus and wine, but it not purifying for major or minor impurity |hadath| and therefore unfit for wudu and ghusl.

Overall, the water used to remove one’s minor impurity or the water used to make wudu upon wudu (intending the pleasure of God) is deemed used water. It is not valid to perform wudu or bath with this used water?

مَتَى يَصَيْرُ الْمَاءُ مُسْتَعْمَلًا؟

When Does Water Become Used?

وَيَصِيْرُ الْمَاءُ مُسْتَعْمَلًا بِمُجَرَّدِ اِنْفِصَالِهِ عَنِ الْجَسَدِ

Water becomes used right after it separates from the body. For example, a person who is washing his arm renders the water used right after it separates from the limb.

مَا لَا يَجُوْزُ الْوُضُوْءُ بِهِ

That Which Is Not Permitted For Wudu

وَلَا يَجُوْزُ بِمَاءِ ثَمَرٍ وَشَجَرٍ وَلَوْ خَرَجَ بِنَفْسِهِ مِنْ غَيْرِ عَصْرٍ فِيْ الْأَظْهَرِ

One is not permitted to make wudu with tree water or fruit water (fruit juice) even if the water flows out by itself without being squeezed, and this is the most evident view on the basis that it has been mixed and is no longer plain water. An example is the juice from grapes.

وَلَا بِمَاءٍ زَالَ طَبْعُهُ بِالطَّبْخِ أَوْ بِغَلَبَةِ غَيْرِهِ عَلَيْهِ

Likewise, it is not permitted to use water that has lost its essence (or nature)

through cooking, or through the water being overwhelmed (or dominated) by

another substance. The nature of water is to be thin and easy flowing, and if it

loses this nature through cooking or due to a substance defeating the water, then

this change renders the water unfit for wudu, such as when one cocks lentils in

the water and allows it to dry, it becomes hardened, which then deems it invalid

to use. Note: water may be defeated by solid or liquid substances.

بِمَ تَكُوْنُ الْغَلَبَةُ

That Which Overwhelms The Water

وَالْغَلَبَةُ فِيْ مُخَالَطَةِ الْجَامِدَاتِ بَإِخْرَاجِ الْمَاءِ عَنْ رِقَّتِهِ وَسَيَلَانِهِ

وَلَا يَضُرُّ تَغَيُّرُ أَوْصَافِهِ كُلِّهَا بِجَامِدٍ كَزَعْفَرَانٍ وَفَاكِهَةٍ وَوَرَقِ شَجَرٍ

When mixed with a solid substance, the water is overwhelmed when it loses its thin and easy flowing nature, in which case it is not fit for ablution. If however, the water retains its flowing nature even after mixing with a solid, such as saffron, fruit or tree leaves, it remains permissible to use even if the water loses all its qualities such as colour, smell or taste. This means that if a solid such as leaves or apples mix with the water, but the water retains its flowing nature, then it does not affect the status of the water, even if some characteristics of the water change, such as its color. The Prophet ((God bless him and grant him peace)) stated the following words regarding the man who fell down from his camel and died [Wash him with water and lotus leaves, and shroud him in two garments]. This indicates that if objects such as lotus leaves fall in the water it is of no harm, for the water has retained its essence.

وَالْغَلَبَةُ فِيْ الْمَائِعَاتِ بِظُهُوْرِ وَصْفٍ وَاحِدٍ مِنْ مَائِعٍ لَهُ وَصْفَانِ فَقَطْ كَالَّلَبَنِ لَهُ الْلَّوْنُ وَالطَّعْمُ وَلَا رَائِحَةَ لَهُ وَبِظُهُوْرِ وَصْفَيْنِ لَهَ مِنْ مَائِعٍ لَهُ ثَلَاثَةٌ كَالْخَلِّ

When water is mixed with a liquid substance that has characteristics, such as taste, colour and smell, the water is overwhelmed when the following occurs; there are some liquids that have two characteristics, such as milk, which has colour and taste but no smell. When one of these two appears in the water, it is regarded as overwhelmed. Additionally, there are liquids that consist of three characteristics such as vinegar, which has smell, taste, and colour. When two of these three appear, the water is deemed overwhelmed. Hence, when ome from two appears and when two from three appears, the water is deemed unfit because it has been dominated. Therefore, when liquid substances mix with the water, it is assessed by the qualities of taste, colour, and smell and when solids mix with the water, it ts assessed by its qualities of thinness and flowing nature.


' Bukhari 1268

وَالْغَلَبَةُ فِيْ الْمَائِعِ الَّذِيْ لَا وَصْفَ لَهُ كَالْمَاءِ الْمُسْتَعْمَلِ وَمَاءِ الْوَرْدِ الْمُنْقَطِعِ الرَّائِحَةِ تَكُوْنُ بَالْوَزْنِ فَإِنِ اِخْتَلَطَ رَطْلَانِ مِنَ الْمَاءِ الْمُسْتَعْمَلِ بَرَطْلٍ مِنَ الْمُطْلَقِ لَا يُجُوْزُ الْوُضُوْءُ وَبِعَكْسِهِ جَازِ

In the case of water mixing with a liquid substance which has no characteristic to it, such as previously used water or rose water that has lost its smell, then it is assessed by weight. That is, if two ratls of used water mixes with one radi of plain water (mutlag), then ablution is not permitted with this water. If the opposite occurs, it is permissible. Note: a raél is both a weight and a volumetric measure. One ratl in Baghdad measure is equal to 384.240 grams. Two raéls are therefore equal to 769 grams.

وَالرَّابِعُ مَاءٌ نَجِسٌ وَهُوَ الَّذِيْ حَلَّتْ فِيْهِ نَجَاسَةٌ وَكَانَ رَاكِدًا قَلِيْلًا، وَالْقَلِيْلُ مَا دُوْنَ عُشْرٍ فِيْ عُشْرٍ، فَيَنْجُسُ وَإِنْ لَمْ يَظْهَرْ أَثَرُهَا فِيْهِ

4/ The fourth type is filthy (najis) water. This is a small quantity of sti water into which an impurity has fallen. The water is deemed impure even if no trace of the filth appears therein. A small quantity of water is considered as less than ten by ten arm lengths.’ Note: water can be retained in a place that is either — square, circular or rectangular as is seen in ponds and basins. If the place is square and the length of each side is ten arm lengths (ie. its area is ten by ten general arm lengths), then it is considered as a large amount of water. If it is less, then it is deemed as a small quantity. If the water is in a place that is circular and the circumference is thirty six arms length, it is considered a large quantity of water. If it is less, the water is considered as a small quantity. And with respect to a large quantity, the depth is such that if one reaches into it to scoop up water, the base of the water would not appear. Therefore, if one knows for sure or strongly believes that filth [najis] has fallen in a small quantity of still water, then it is regarded impure, even if no trace of the filth appears therein.’ Though if the water is considered as a large quantity of water, and an impurity falls in — it does not become filthy unless the trait of filth becomes noticeable therein; and this is the soundest view.’

With respect to this type of water, it is not permitted to remove pAysical or legal filth with it. As for Shafi‘i, he held that the small quantity of water is restricted to less than gudlatayn (i.e. less than 216 litres); so that if the water reaches gullatayn {i.e. 216 litres) and an impurity falls in, though no sign of its colour, taste or smell become apparent, then it is deemed pure, given that the Prophet said [If the water reaches gudlatayn (or 216 litres), then it does not carry filth].° If on the other hand, the signs of filth do become apparent in 216 litres of water, then it is deemed filthy. However, the Hanafis explained this hadith of qullatayn stating that the narrations conflict in this regard; for some state when the water reaches one guéfa and some state three and some state forty.'

أَوْ جَارِيًا وَظَهَرَ فِيْهِ أَثَرُهَا وَالْأَثَرُ طَعْمٌ أَوْ لَوْنٌ أَوْ رِيْحٌ

If however, an impurity falls in running water and the signs of filth appear in it, then it is deemed impure. The signs (or traces) of filth are taste, colour or srnelll. Though if the filth is not evident or noticeable, then wudu is permitted because the filth does not remain due to the flow of the water. Note: running water is one that is not used repeatedly, such that if one scoops up water once, it will not be the same water when one scoops it up the next time.

وَالْخَامِسُ مَاءٌ مَشْكُوْكٌ فِيْ طَهُوْرِيَتِهِ وَهُوَ مَا شَرِبَ مِنْهُ حَمَارٌ أَوْ بَغْلٌ

5/ The fifth type of water is that which is doubtful with respect to its purifying other things, and not with respect to its actual purity.” This is water which a donkey or mule has drunk from. This doubt will be explained shortly.

فَصْلٌ فِيْ أَحْكَامِ السُّؤْرِ

The Rulings of Remnant Water [Su'r]

وَالْمَاءُ الْقَلِيْلُ إِذَا شَرِبَ مِنْهُ حَيَوَانٌ يَكُوْنُ عَلَى أَرْبَعَةِ أَقْسَامٍ وَيُسَمَّى سُؤْرًا

If an animal drinks from a smal] amount of water, the remaining water is called su’r, and there are four categories:

الْأَوَّلُ: طَاهِرٌ مُطَهِّرٌ وَهُوَ مَا شَرِبَ مِنْهُ آدَمِيٌّ أَوْ فَرَسٌ أَوْ مَا يُؤْكَلُ لَحْمُهُ

1. The first type is water that is pure in itself and is purifying for other things and this is the water that a human drinks from, provided there is no filth in his mouth at the time, such as alcohol; or water that a horse drinks from, for the leftover water of the horse is pure according to the majority, or an animal whose meat is lawful for consumption.

والثَّانِيْ: نَجِسٌ لَا يَجُوْزُ اِسْتِعْمَالُهُ وَهُوَ مَا شَرِبَ مِنْهُ الْكَلْبُ أَوْ الْخِنْزِيْرُ أَوْ شَيْءٌ مِنْ سِبَاعِ الْبَهَائِمِ كَالْفَهْدِ وَالذِّئْبِ

2. The second type is filthy water that is not permissible to use. This is water that a dog, pig or predatory land animal, such as a cheetah, fox or wolf have drunk


*Su’r is known as the remainder. Legally, it is the small quantity of water which remains after a human or animal have drunk. This means that the water of a river or ocean cannot be termed su’ even if thousands of people or animals drink from its water.

وَالثَّالِثُ: مَكْرُوْهٌ اِسْتِعْمَالُهُ مَعْ وُجُوْدِ غَيْرِهِ وَهُوَ: سُؤْرُ الْهِرَّةِ وَالدَّجَاجَةِ الْمُخْلَاةِ وَسِبَاعُ الطَّيْرِ كَالصَّقْرِ وَالشَّاهِيْنِ وَالْحِدْأَةِ (وَسَوَاكِنِ الْبُيُوْتِ) كَالْفَأْرَةِ لَا الْعَقْرَبِ

3. The third type is water that is disliked to use in the presence of plain water.

Meaning if plain unmixed water is available, it becomes disliked to use this type

of water. This is the leftover water of a cat, stray chicken, predatory bird such as

an eagle, falcon and glede as well as animals that tend to be located im or around

the home such as a rat or snake, though there is no dislike in using the leftover

water of a scorpion. The reason for a stray chicken is because it is free to roam

and one cannot be sure if it has eaten something filthy or not. If however the

chicken is caged, then its leftover water is not disliked. Moreover, with respect to

why predatory birds are in this type and their difference to predatory animals, is

that predatory land animals drink with their tongues, and this is wet with saliva

that is deemed impure, whereas predatory birds drink with their beak, and their

beaks are bones which are pure.

وَالرَّابِعُ: مَشْكُوْكٌ فِيْ طَهُوْرِيَّتِهِ وَهُوَ: سُؤْرُ الْبَغْلِ وَالْحِمَارِ، فَإِنْ لَمْ يَجِدْ غَيْرَهُ تَوْضَّأَ بِهِ وَتَيَمَّمَ ثُمَّ صَلَّى

4. The fourth type is water that is suspect (doubtful) with respect to its purity.

This is the left over water of a mule or donkey. If there is mo other water

available, then one is permitted to make ablution with this type and then make

tayammum, followed by prayer. The reason one also observes tayammum is

precautionary in case the wudu is not accepted due to the water.