The Situation of one who could Not Recall Missed Solāh and Fasts.
Description: If someone could not remember the number of Solāh and fasts he had missed, how should he make over them?
In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful;
All the praise and thanks is due to Allāh, the Lord of al-‘ālamīn. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, Sallallāhu `alayhi wasallam is His Messenger.
The issue of the Missed Solāh.
The Solāh are enjoined to be adhered to its specific time and it is not permissible to transgress against that except for reasons permitted in syari`ah. The Five daily Solāh is a mandatory tenet of Islam and indeed Allah has allocated specific times for acts of worship for reasons that are known to Him.
If one missed the Solāh with no excuse; rather he ignored it until the time for it ended, out of laziness and carelessness. This according to the consensus of the Muslims fuqaha' the person has committed a major sin.
It is not valid for him to make it up (Qada') according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions, rather he has to repent and regret it, and resolve not to do that again, and he should do a lot of good deeds and offer a lot of voluntary Solāh.
Allāh Subhānahu wa ta`ala clearly says in the Qur`an:
“Verily, As-Solāh is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours” [An-Nisā’, 4:103]
Whatever the case, we are enjoined to adhere to it and it is not permissible to transgress against that except for reasons permitted in syāri`ah.
1. The Solāh was missed due to such as overslept or forgetting.
In this case it must be made up as the Prophet (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Whoever forgets a Solāh or sleeps and misses it, the expiation for that is to perform it when he remembers.”
[Narrated by Al-Bukhari, 572; Muslim, 684].
One should offer these Solāh in order as enjoined in a hadith by Jabir Ibn `Abdallah (radiyallāhu`anhu), which recorded that `Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (radiyallāhu`anhu) on the Day of Al-Khandaq after the sun had set, and started blaming the kuffar of Quraish and saying:
“O Messenger of Allah! I could hardly perform Solāh ‘Asar until the sun had almost set.” The Prophet (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “By Allah! I did not perform it either.” We went to Bat-haan and he took the wudhu’ for Solāh and so did we, then he perform Solāh ‘Asar after the sun had set, then he observed Solāh Maghrib after that.
[Narrated by al-Bukhari (571) and Muslim (631)].
2. Omitted Solāh due to unaware of it because of unconsciousness.
In this case the Solāh is waived for him and he does not have to make it up.
[Fatawa Al-Lajnah Al-Da’imah, 6/21]
3. He missed the Solāh for no valid reason.
One of two scenarios applies in this case:
Either he denied and refused to accept that the Solāh is obligatory.
In this case there is no dispute that this is kufur and he has nothing to do with Islam. He has to enter Islam and then do all the duties and obligations of Islam, but he does not have to make up the prayers he missed when he was a kafir.
Or, he did not observe the Solāh because he was negligent and lazy.
In this case the Solāh are not valid if he makes them up, because he had no excuse at the time when he missed them.
• Allah has enjoined Solāh at certain, clearly-defined times, as He says: “Verily, As-Solāh is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours” [An-Nisā’ 4:103]
• The Messenger of Allah (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whoever does an action that is not part of this matter of ours will have it rejected.”
[Narrated by Al-Bukhari, 2697; Muslim, 1718.]
Shaikh `Abd Al-‘Aziz Ibn Baaz (rahimahullāh said:
The one who missed Solāh deliberately does not have to make them up, according to the correct scholarly view. Rather he has to repent to Allah, because Solāh is the foundation of Islam, and failing to pray is the greatest of sins. In fact, failing to perform it constitutes major kufur according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions, because it is narrated that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said:
“The covenant that stands between us and them is Solāh; whoever does not perform Solāh is a kafir.”
[Narrated by Imām Ahmad and the authors of Al-Sunan with a sahih isnād from Buraidah (radiyallāhu`anu)]
The Messenger Allah (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Between a man and syirik and kufur there stands his giving up Solāh.”
[Narrated by Imam Muslim in his Sahih from Jabir Ibn `Abdallah (radiyallāhu`anhu)].
And there are other ahadith which indicate the same thing.
What is needed is to repent sincerely to Allāh by regretting what you have done in the past, resolving not to go back to it. You do not have to make up anything, either with every prayer or otherwise. Praise be to Allāh, whoever repents, Allah accepts his repentance. Allāh says:
“And all of you beg Allāh to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful”
And the Prophet (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “The one who repents from sin is like one who did not sin at all.”
Sincere in the repentance entails to take stock of yourself, one have to ask Allah to forgive what you have done, strive to offer prayers regularly on time in congregation. And to embark in a lot of righteous deeds, and be optimistic, for Allah says:
“And verily, I am indeed forgiving to him who repents, believes (in My Oneness, and associates none in worship with Me) and does righteous good deeds, and then remains constant in doing them (till his death)”
After mentioning syirik, murder and zina (adultery) in Surah Al-Furqan, Allah says:
“..and whoever does this shall receive the punishment. The torment will be doubled to him on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein in disgrace. Except those who repent and believe (in Islamic Monotheism), and do righteous deeds; for those, Allah will change their sins into good deeds, and Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful” [Al-Furqan 25:68-70]
[Majmu’ Fatawa Al-Shaikh Ibn Baaz, 10/329, 330]
The Issue of Making up Missed Fasts
If you did not fast during the time when you did not pray, then you do not have to make up those fasts, because the one who does not pray is a kafir in the sense of major kufur that puts him beyond the pale of Islam – as stated above. When a kafir becomes Muslim, he is not obliged to make up acts of worship that he did not do when he was a kafir.
But if you did not fast at a time when you were observing solāh, then one of the following two scenarios must apply:
• Either you failed to form the intention to fast from the night before, and you decided rather that you would not fast.
In this case making up the fasts would not be valid in your case, because you failed to do the act of worship at the time prescribed for it by Islam, with no excuse.
• Or you started to fast then you broke the fast during the day.
In this case you have to make it up, because when the Prophet (Sallallāhu `alayhi wasallam) commanded the one who had had intercourse during the day in Ramadhān to offer expiation for that, he said to him: “Fast one day in its stead.”
[Narrated by Abu Dawud, 2393; Ibn Mājah, 1671; classified as sahih by Al-Albāni in Irwa’ Al-Ghalil, 940].
• Regarding the one who intentionally breaks the fast by having sexual intercourse with his wife during the daytime in Ramadhān, then he has committed a great sin and violated the sacredness of this month, and must make up the fast for that day. In addition, he is required to free a slave if it is possible to do so, if not, he has to fast two consecutive months and if he is unable to do so, then to he has feed sixty poor and needy people. The same is required of the wife as is required of her husband, if she freely consented (to having sexual intercourse). However, if she was forced, then nothing is required of her according to the predominant opinion of the scholars.
• If one intentionally breaks his fast by eating or drinking without a legitimate excuse, then again he has committed a great sin and violated the sacredness of this month. Such a person has a severe threat awaiting him. Prophet Muhammad (Sallallāhu `alayhi wasallam) said: "Whoever breaks fasting of Ramadhān without having a legitimate excuse or being ill, he cannot make up for that day, even if he undertakes a perpetual fast.” [Al-Bukhari]
According to Imāms Ahmad, Ash-Shāfi`ie, Sa`id Ibn Al-Musaiyib and Al-Shabby and others said that one should sincerely repent and seek the forgiveness of Almighty Allah and make up the day later [followed by observing the righteous deeds].
• This is what some of scholars regarded as an expiation that is required for breaking the fast of Ramadhān without a valid reason. They say, one should fast for two months consecutively or feed sixty poor people as well as to make up the day later with any of both forms of expiation. The most right things to do are a total repentance and embarking doing on righteous deeds.
Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaymin (rahimahullāh) was asked about the ruling on breaking the fast during the day in Ramadhān with no excuse. He replied:
• Breaking the fast during the day in Ramadhān with no excuse is a major sin, which makes a person a fasiq (disobedient, evildoer) who has to repent to Allāh and make up the day when he broke his fast; if he fasted then during the day he broke his fast with no excuse, then he has sinned, and he has to make up the day when he broke the fast, because when he started it, it became binding upon him, so he has to make it up, like a vow. But if he did not fast at all, deliberately, with no excuse, then it is most likely that he does not have to make it up, because that will not benefit him at all, for it will never be accepted from him.
• The basic principle with regard to every act of worship which is to be done at a specific time is that if it is delayed beyond that time with no excuse, it will not be accepted, because the Prophet (Sallallāhu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whoever does any action that is not in accordance with this matter of ours will have it rejected.” And he has transgressed the limits set by Allāh, and transgressing the limits set by Allāh is zulm (wrongdoing), and good deeds are not accepted from the wrongdoer. Allāh says: “And whoever transgresses the limits ordained by Allāh, then such are the Zalimun (wrongdoers)” [Al-Baqarah 2:229]
• If he had done this act of worship ahead of time – such as before the time for it commence – it would not have been accepted of him, and by the same token, if he does it after that it will not be accepted from him, unless he has an excuse.
[Majmu’ Fatawa Al-Shaikh Ibn ‘Uthaimin (19, Question No. 45) ]
What he has to do is repent sincerely from all sins, and perform obligatory duties regularly and on time, and give up evil deeds, and do a lot of righteous deeds and acts of worship.
Aad Allāh Almighty knows best.
[Via Islam Q&A]