Class 7 – Fiqh – Wudoo, Ghusl & Tayammum

Class 7
‘Fiqh – Wudoo, Ghusl & Tayammum’

WUDOO (Purification)
Purity (Tahârah) is a beautiful word that is pleasing to the ears, and it is a quality which everyone strives to maintain. From an Islamic perspective, purity is a word which is general in its meaning. It may mean physical cleanness, which is purity (of the body) from impure substances or states of impurity, or it may mean spiritual purity, which is the purity of one’s self from vices, faults, sins, and replacing them with good deeds, whether in speech or deeds.

This comprehensive meaning of purity is indicated in the words of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  as reported by Abu Hurairah, (R.A.): What do you think? If there was a river at the door of one of you in which he bathes five times a day, would there be any filth left on him?” They answered, “There would be no filth left.” The Prophet  said, “That is like the five Prayers, through them Allâh wipes away sins.” (al-Bukhâri)

Also, the Prayer (Salât) is not accepted except if one is in a state of purity. This state if purity is achieved either through performing ablution (wudoo´), as in the case of minor impurity, or a bath (ghusl), as in the case of major impurity. The Prophet ﷺ  said: “No Prayer is accepted without purification, and no charity is accepted from earnings made from impermissible sources.” (Muslim)

If a Muslim purifies himself in accordance with Allâh’s commandments and the Prophet’s instructions, his Prayer will be a means for him to purify himself of sins.

Islam is a religion of both outward and inward purity. Allâh’s Messenger ﷺ  severely warned those who neglect physical purity which is a prerequisite for the validity of certain acts of worship, like Prayer, circumambulation (Tawâf) of the Ka’bah, touching or holding the Qur`ân, and its likes.

Ibn ‘Abbâs (R.A.) said: “The Messenger of Allâh ﷺ  passed by two graves and said: Indeed they are being punished, but for something which seemed trivial to them: this one used not to guard himself from urine; whereas the other was used to tale bearing.” He requested a green leaf of a palm branch, split it into two halves, and put a half on each grave. He then said, Hopefully their punishment will be lightened until they (the branches) become dry.” (al-Bukhâri)

The Unique Qualities of Purification

1. Purification is equal to half of the faith:

The Prophet of Allâh ﷺ  said in this regard: Cleanliness is equal to half the faith…” (Muslim)

2. Purification is one of the ways one can please Allâh and earn His love

Allâh ﷺ  said: Indeed Allâh loves those who continually seek repentance and those who purify themselves.” [Surah al-Baqarah (2):222]

3. To preserve and guard purification, [by always striving to be in a state of purity by performing ablution,] is one of the qualities of believers, for it is a type of worship seen only by Allâh.

The Prophet ﷺ  said: Always be upright, though you will not be able to perfectly, and know that the Prayer is the best of your deeds. Only a believer guards and preserves his wudoo´ (ablution).” (Ibn Maajah)

4. Maintaining purification is an act that leads to acceptance of supplication.

‘Amr bin ‘Abasah (R.A.) narrated that the Prophet ﷺ  said, No Muslim who sleeps in a state of purification (having performed ablution) and then after awakening during night, mentions Allâh and asks Him anything of the good of this life and the Hereafter, except that Allâh gives him what he asked for.” (Ahmad)

5. Purification elevates one’s rank and status.

Abu Hurairah (R.A.) narrated that the Prophet ﷺ  said to Bilâl at the time of the Fajr (Dawn) Prayer: O Bilâl, Tell me the most promising deed you have done in Islâm, for I heard the sound of your footsteps in Paradise.” Bilâl answered: “I haven’t done an act more hopeful to me than this: I have never performed ablution during the day or night except that [after it] I performed what I could of voluntary Prayers.” (al-Bukhâri)

Wudhu (Ablution)

Prior to entering Salaat, the person is required to undertake a certain purification procedure known as “Wudhu” without which, the person’s prayer would not be acceptable in the sight of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala).

Allah,-the Almighty, says: O ye who believe, when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces and your arms to the elbows,- rub your heads (with water),- and (wash) your feet to the ankles(Qur’an 5:6).

And the Prophet ﷺ , said: Prayer without ablution is invalid(Reported by Imam Muslim).

How to Perform Wudoo
1. Making the intention to perform Wudhu as an act of sincere homage and worship for the pleasure of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). The intention need not be uttered but it should be kept in mind during the Wudhu.

2. Invoking Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) at the start of the Wudhu by saying: BISMILLAHI ARRAHMANI ARRAHIIM (in the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful).

3.Washing the hands up to the wrists three times, while rubbing them and letting the water reach between the fingers.

4.Rinsing the mouth with water thrice, preferably using the “Miswak” (tooth stick), toothbrush, or fingers to brush the teeth and the gum. Regarding the importance of the Miswak, the Prophet ﷺ said:“ If it had not been too great a burden on my Ummah, I would have ordered them to use the Miswak at every Wudhu” (Reported by Imam Malik).

5. Cleaning the nostrils by sniffing water in and out three times.

6.Washing the entire face thrice using both hands from the top of the forehead down to the bottom of the chin and from ear to ear.

7.Washing the arms three times up to the upper end of the elbows: right arm first, and then, left arm. Arms should be rubbed while they are being washed.

8. Wetting both hands and passing the same over the head starting from above the forehead down to the nape (the back of the neck) and from there, returning both hands up to above the forehead.

9. From the head, without wetting the hands again, the person wipes the earlobes, using the fore fingers to wipe the inner part of the lobes and the thumbs for the outside part.

10. Washing both feet up to the ankles three times, beginning with the right foot and then with the left foot. Both feet should be rubbed while they are being washed and water should freely pass between the toes.

Important Points on Wudhu

1. Much virtue is attached to Wudhu which is properly performed as can be noted from the following saying of the Prophet ﷺ :A person who performs Wudhu properly will have his sins removed from his body, so much that the sins are removed even from underneath his nails(Reported by Imam Muslim).

2. Having completed the Wudhu, the person may recite the “SHAHADA”, i.e. the words of witness and the supplication for concluding the Wudhu as follows:

ASHHADUANLAA ILAHA ILLA-LAAHU WA ASH-HADU ANNA MUHAMMADAN ABDUHU WA RASUULUHU. ALLAHUMMA IJ’ALNII MINA T-A WABIIN WA IJ’ALNII MINA-L MUTAHIRIIN, which means: I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is His servant and messenger… O Lord, make me among those who return to you in repentance and of those who are undefiled.

Regarding the virtue of the above supplication, the leader of the faithful, Umar lbn-ul Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) reported the Prophet ﷺ  as saying:“ If anyone performs the Wudhu completely and then says, I testify that there is no god but Allah alone, He has no partner: and I testify that Muhammad is His servant and messenger, the eight gates of Paradise will be opened for him and may enter by whichever of the gates he wishes(Related by Imam Muslim).

3. When performing Wudhu, it is recommended to let the water reach beyond the area required to be washed (e.g., when washing the arms the person may wash beyond the elbows or beyond the ankles when washing the feet). Great virtue has been attached to this fact, as can be noted from the following saying of the Prophet ﷺ : My nation (Ummah) will be called (distinguished) on the Day of Judgement as a people with bright faces and limbs from the effect of their Wudhu practices. Therefore, anyone of you who wishes to increase his brightness may do so (by washing beyond the required areas when performing Wudhu)(Reported by lmams Bukhari and Muslim).

4. The importance of the Miswak, the Prophet ﷺ  said:If it had not been too great a burden on my Ummah, I would have ordered them to use the Miswak at every Wudhu(Reported by Imam Malik).

Matters which Invalidate the Wudhu

The person will remain in a state of Wudhu until any of the following matters is committed:

  1. Passing of excrement, urine or wind. When someone passes urine and/or excrement, it becomes mandatory upon such a person to remove the foulness of these things before performing Wudhu. Pure water should be used for this purpose, but in case, it is not available after earnest search for it, the person may resort to the use of certain dry objects, such as stones, dry woods and tissue paper to remove the filth. This is known as “Istijmaar”. Odd numbers of the object to be used is preferred, such as 3, 5, etc. The person should ensure that no drops of urine or stains of foulness are left on his/her body or clothes. However, in the case of persons afflicted with permanent wetting or permanent passing of wind, or of women who are suffering from prolonged flows of blood, such persons are required to perform Wudhu only once before the start of each prayer and their Wudhu would remain valid even if the above problems may occur later in the course of the prayer.
  2. Eating of camel’s meat.
  3. Sleeping in which the person losses consciousness.
  4. Loss of consciousness resulting from insanity, fainting, etc.
  5. Touching of the sexual organs intentionally, directly and unclothed.

GHUSL (Total Bath)

Ghusl in Islam means the bathing of the entire body with water. Proof of its legitimacy is embodied in the Qur’an as follows:“ And if ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body” (Qur’an 5:6).

Note : (Mothers please take this as an opportunity to explain about Menstruation and all, as the daughters in this age group are reaching this point soon). We are not discussing the points were Ghusl is obligatory as it might not be suitable for the 11-13yrs old.

Occasions for which Ghusl is preferred

  1. Before going to Jumah Congregational (Friday Prayer).
  2. Before going to Eid Prayers (Muslim annual feast prayers).
  3. Before undertaking Umrah or Hajj (Pilgrimage to Makkah).
  4. Upon washing a corpse. (According to many scholars, the performance of Ghusl is preferred for a person who washes a corpse).
  5. When a disbeliever reverts to Islam.

How Ghusl is Performed

There are two essential requirements Intention & washing the full body. But there are also other voluntary acts recommended for Ghusl. Both the essential and the voluntary acts are now integrated here below to demonstrate how the Prophet ﷺ used to perform the Ghusl:

  1. Intend by heart to perform Ghusl.
  2. Wash both hands up to the wrists three times.
  3. Wash the private parts properly.
  4. Perform Wudhu as usual (in the manner already discussed) except, that the washing of the feet would be delayed until later when all the rest of the body is bathed.
  5. Pour water over the head three times, massaging the hair to allow water to reach its roots.
  6. Pour water liberally over the entire body, beginning with the right side and then, the left side ensuring that no part of the body is untouched by water such as the armpits, inside the earlobes, inside the navel, between the fingers and toes, etc.
  7. Finally, move a little further from where you were and wash your feet, beginning with your right foot and then, the left.

The person may after completing the Ghusl recite the supplication for concluding Ghusl which should be recited outside the toilet/bathroom and which is the same as the one recited after completing Wudhu.

Acts Forbidden to Persons who are required to Perform Ghusl

  1. Any type of prayer whether obligatory or voluntary.
  2. Circumambulating the Ka’abah (Tawaf).
  3. Touching or carrying the Qur’an. However, the prohibition does not apply to other books which contain Qur’anic passages such as commentaries of the Qur’an or works of Islamic jurisprudence.
  4. .
  5. Staying Inside the Mosque.

At-Tayammum (Ablution Using The Earth)

At-Tayammum” is a means of using the soil to wipe one’s face and hands with the intention of preparing oneself to perform prayer. Proof of its legitimacy is found in the Qur’an as follows:“ And if you are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, for Allah does blot out sins and forgives again and again” (Qur’an 4:43).

The Prophet ﷺ , also said:“ All of the earth has been made a pure place of prayer for me and my Ummah (Nation). Whenever a person from my nation wants to pray, he has something with which to purify himself … that is the earth” (Reported by Imam Ahmad).

Instances when At-Tayammum is Permitted

  1. Where the person cannot find water or the amount of water is not sufficient for Wudhu. However, before performing At-Tayammum, the person is required to look for water earnestly from any possible source.
  2. When a person is injured or ill and believes that the use of water will worsen his/her condition, then, At-Tayammum is allowed.
  3. When water is too cold such that it may harm the person, At-Tayammum is allowed if the user cannot find means of heating the water.
  4. When water is nearby, but the person is not able to fetch it due to fear for his/her life, family and wealth, (e.g. from an enemy either beast or human in the vicinity) then, At-Tayammum may be performed.
  5. When there is not enough water and one is forced to save what is available for drinking and/or cooking, then, At-Tayammum is allowed.

The Earth (Soil) to be used for At-Tayammum

This should be pure earth or soil and can be sand, stone or gypsum which produce dust when hit with the hands.

How to Perform At-Tayammum

  • A. The person should first intend by heart to perform At-Tayammum.
  • B. The person then strike the soil with the palms of both hands.
  • C. The person then wipes the face using both palms.
  • D. Thereafter, the person uses the left palm to wipe over the back of the right hand up to the wrist, and then, uses the right palm to wipe over the back of the left hand upto the wrist.


  • i. If any dust clings to the hands upon striking the earth, it should be blown out first before wiping the face and the hands to avoid the dust.
  • ii. Only one strike on the earth is sufficient for wiping both the face and hands.
  • iii. For persons who are required to perform Ghusl, but are unable to find water, then, At- Tayammum as discussed would suffice.

Matters which Nullify At-Tayammum

Purification by At-Tayammum has the same validity as Wudhu and Ghusl performed with water, but becomes invalidated in the following cases:

  • All actions and conditions that nullify Wudhu also nullify At-Tayammum.
  • If after performing At-Tayammum, water is found for Wudhu or Ghusl.


  • Do not need to memorise the Ayaahs & Hadeeths but get a good understanding of it.
  • Memorise the things about Wudoo, Ghusl & Tayammum as that is needed in daily life and not only for the Test.
  • Know what nullifies them.
  • Memorize the Dua to be recited after Wudoo.