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delta_pak

Difference in Sahar/Iftar timings?

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Assalamu'alaikum!

Dear members, as you can see this is my first post on this forum. I have come here because, being a Sunni Muslim, I was a bit troubled by the variation in the Sehr/Iftar timings of Hanafi and Jafari schools of thoughts (these are the two main madhabs followed in my country). There was a consistent variation of 10 minutes between them. The Shias always closed their Sehri 10 minutes prior to the Sunnis and began their Iftar 10 minutes after them.

Why is that? What is the jurisprudence behind this?

Jazak'Allah

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Perhaps the sunni timing is based off exact fajr time and exact sunset time.  Whereas the shia timing involves a 10 minute buffer to prevent error in starting your fast too late, or opening it too early.  Imsak time is what it's called in the morning.

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34 minutes ago, coldcow said:

Perhaps the sunni timing is based off exact fajr time and exact sunset time.  Whereas the shia timing involves a 10 minute buffer to prevent error in starting your fast too late, or opening it too early.  Imsak time is what it's called in the morning.

In that case isn't it Bida'h? Since there is no record of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) ever observing Imsak or the Holy Quran invoking us to do so? To quote,

“...and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night)” (2:187)

“Bilaal gives the adhaan at night, so eat and drink until you hear the adhaan of Ibn Umm Maktoom, for he does not give the adhaan until dawn comes.” (Muslim, 2670)

 

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6 minutes ago, delta_pak said:

In that case isn't it Bida'h? Since there is no record of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) ever observing Imsak or the Holy Quran invoking us to do so? To quote,

“...and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night)” (2:187)

“Bilaal gives the adhaan at night, so eat and drink until you hear the adhaan of Ibn Umm Maktoom, for he does not give the adhaan until dawn comes.” (Muslim, 2670)

 

Please explain how it is bidah.  Do you literally wait outside watching for the "white thread of dawn"?  If not, how can you be sure you're not eating past it?  100 years ago, before the advent of precise clocks, how could you be sure your clock was 100% accurate?  Or are you saying it is permissible to accidentally eat past the white thread?  Also, what if the weather is bad, it is very dark outside because of it, and you cannot witness the sunset yourself?  And if you don't have 100% faith in your clock?  Or don't have 100% faith in your calculation?  Do you risk breaking your fast early?

Or perhaps you start it 10 minutes early so that in case any food particles stuck in your teeth come loose, you can break and restart your fast on time.

The reality is that our prophet had neither a clock, nor a list of times for fajr/sunset.  You could argue that using either is bidah, couldn't you not?

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6 minutes ago, coldcow said:

Please explain how it is bidah.  Do you literally wait outside watching for the "white thread of dawn"?  If not, how can you be sure you're not eating past it?  100 years ago, before the advent of precise clocks, how could you be sure your clock was 100% accurate?  Or are you saying it is permissible to accidentally eat past the white thread?  Also, what if the weather is bad, it is very dark outside because of it, and you cannot witness the sunset yourself?  And if you don't have 100% faith in your clock?  Or don't have 100% faith in your calculation?  Do you risk breaking your fast early?

Or perhaps you start it 10 minutes early so that in case any food particles stuck in your teeth come loose, you can break and restart your fast on time.

The reality is that our prophet had neither a clock, nor a list of times for fajr/sunset.  You could argue that using either is bidah, couldn't you not?

How do you negate adhaan being mentioned by the Holy Prophet (pbuh)? Isn't adhaan being given to this day? There is no innovation there.

And even if your argument is taken why does one want to err on the side of caution when it comes to an act of worship? No one intentionally wants to eat past dawn or break their fast too early. And intentions hold more weight than actions in the court of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala.

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11 minutes ago, delta_pak said:

How do you negate adhaan being mentioned by the Holy Prophet (pbuh)? Isn't adhaan being given to this day? There is no innovation there.

And even if your argument is taken why does one want to err on the side of caution when it comes to an act of worship? No one intentionally wants to eat past dawn or break their fast too early. And intentions hold more weight than actions in the court of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala.

So Adhan back in the day was probably pretty imprecise, but it was probably loud enough for everyone in town to hear, so even if it was early/late, everyone was early/late together.  At this moment, I'm at least 30 miles from the nearest Islamic center, and they don't even do an external Adhan.  And again, even if they did, it would be a pretty imprecise thing.

Intentions matter, sure.  But is it really innovation to take a few precautionary minutes to account for human margin of error?

And you didn't answer my question, is using a clock instead of watching for the thread of dawn, or listening for adhan bidah?

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31 minutes ago, coldcow said:

So Adhan back in the day was probably pretty imprecise, but it was probably loud enough for everyone in town to hear, so even if it was early/late, everyone was early/late together.  At this moment, I'm at least 30 miles from the nearest Islamic center, and they don't even do an external Adhan.  And again, even if they did, it would be a pretty imprecise thing.

Intentions matter, sure.  But is it really innovation to take a few precautionary minutes to account for human margin of error?

And you didn't answer my question, is using a clock instead of watching for the thread of dawn, or listening for adhan bidah?

Your scenario is very singular because in most Islamic countries there is a mosque in pretty much every neighborhood. Where I live, I have 6 mosques in a 1.5 mile radius. I can hear 3 adhaans very clearly and they begin within seconds of each other. And with the advancements in astronomy, we are inclined to predict correct sunrise and sunset times.

Regarding, your point about the clock, it was superfluous. The clock isn't magic. It is based on the Earth's revolution on its axis. You open any weather app and you will have sunrise and sunset times displayed in it. And the fajr and maghrib adhaans would normally follow these times for the sake of accuracy. They do so in my place.

By your logic, flying to Makkah for hajj/umrah would be bida'h because airplanes didn't exist back then.

Edited by delta_pak

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2 hours ago, delta_pak said:

Your scenario is very singular because in most Islamic countries there is a mosque in pretty much every neighborhood. Where I live, I have 6 mosques in a 1.5 mile radius. I can hear 3 adhaans very clearly and they begin within seconds of each other. And with the advancements in astronomy, we are inclined to predict correct sunrise and sunset times.

Regarding, your point about the clock, it was superfluous. The clock isn't magic. It is based on the Earth's revolution on its axis. You open any weather app and you will have sunrise and sunset times displayed in it. And the fajr and maghrib adhaans would normally follow these times for the sake of accuracy. They do so in my place.

By your logic, flying to Makkah for hajj/umrah would be bida'h because airplanes didn't exist back then.

The airplane is a tool for travel, it is no more bidah than wearing rubber soled shoes.  There has never been a prescribed method of travel, nor shoes to wear on your feet.  There has, however, been a prescribed timing for which you start your fast, pray, and break your fast.  The clock is a replacement for observing the sun actually set, or the "threads of dawn."  Is it not sunnah to observe the sunset to break ones fast?  what about the moon sighting?  What do you do when travelling in the Arabian desert, far away from any Adhan?  Is it bidah at that point to use your clock?  Or can you start your fast a few minutes early?  Or must you watch for the "threads of dawn"?  If you're ok with a clock telling you what time to start and break your fast, is it acceptable to use calculations to determine Eid?  Or do you believe in actually sighting the moon?  Must the moon sighting be local, as it was in the time of the prophet, or can it be a few hundred miles away since we can now communicate that distance in an instant?

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9 hours ago, coldcow said:

The airplane is a tool for travel, it is no more bidah than wearing rubber soled shoes.  There has never been a prescribed method of travel, nor shoes to wear on your feet.  There has, however, been a prescribed timing for which you start your fast, pray, and break your fast.  The clock is a replacement for observing the sun actually set, or the "threads of dawn."  Is it not sunnah to observe the sunset to break ones fast?  what about the moon sighting?  What do you do when travelling in the Arabian desert, far away from any Adhan?  Is it bidah at that point to use your clock?  Or can you start your fast a few minutes early?  Or must you watch for the "threads of dawn"?  If you're ok with a clock telling you what time to start and break your fast, is it acceptable to use calculations to determine Eid?  Or do you believe in actually sighting the moon?  Must the moon sighting be local, as it was in the time of the prophet, or can it be a few hundred miles away since we can now communicate that distance in an instant?

Timing? Yes the timing is sunrise and sunset. You talk as if a clock is a standalone gadget that tells time of its own volition. It follows the Earth's movement on its axis. This is why sunrise and sunset times are accurate to the dot nowadays. To illustrate my point, go to this Islamic center of yours before maghrib, get any decent weather app like AccuWeather and observe the sunset time on it. Now compare this time to when the Adhaan initiates. You would rarely find a difference there.

Again, my point being that when you can predict sunrise and sunset times so accurately why indulge in the extremist view of Imsak? Follow the Adhaan as prescribed by the Hadith and Quran.

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On 7/4/2016 at 7:54 AM, delta_pak said:

Timing? Yes the timing is sunrise and sunset. You talk as if a clock is a standalone gadget that tells time of its own volition. It follows the Earth's movement on its axis. This is why sunrise and sunset times are accurate to the dot nowadays. To illustrate my point, go to this Islamic center of yours before maghrib, get any decent weather app like AccuWeather and observe the sunset time on it. Now compare this time to when the Adhaan initiates. You would rarely find a difference there.

Again, my point being that when you can predict sunrise and sunset times so accurately why indulge in the extremist view of Imsak? Follow the Adhaan as prescribed by the Hadith and Quran.

I'll just summarize my thoughts:

1) If you eat until it is time to start your fast, then you could have food in your mouth when it's time to start your fast.  So stop eating a few minutes before so you can start your fast on time

2) The true sunnah way of doing things is observing dawn/sunset yourself, or relying on someone else.  If you believe it's ok to use a clock, then you should believe it is ok to use a calendar for the new moon instead of viewing it yourself, or relying on someone else's sighting.

3) Is it wajib to start exactly at dawn?  Or is it an allowance to start at that time to give your more time to eat/drink?  And is it wajib to break your fast exactly at sunset, or is an allowance to make life easier for you so you don't have to stop 5 minutes before and wait there staring at the sun to see when it sets?  (keep in mind, the prophet didn't have a phone app to tell him exactly when the sun set).

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