Fatwa: # 42507
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Date: 11th February 2020


Not being able to keep a vow to fast, what does one do?


Respected Mufti Saheb


If one makes a vow to fast after committing a sin but finds that they cannot refrain from said sin, is it permissible for such a person to break the vow? If so, how does one go about doing it?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

We commend you on your sensitivity to refrain from sin.

In principle if one verbally makes a conditional nadhr (vow), it will be incumbent upon one to fulfil that nadhr (vow) and one cannot break it.[1]

In the enquired situation if one did not use the word ‘every time’ or ‘whenever’, then only one fast will be compulsory if the sin is committed. However, if the words ‘every time’ or ‘whenever’ was uttered, then each time the sin is committed a fast will be binding. Hence, it will not be possible to break a vow.

Furthermore, if one is unable to fulfil the vow by fast then one may offer kaffarah (expiate the vow). The kaffarah for breaking a vow is:[2]

a)    One should free a slave (not generally applicable in these times)

b)    Or feed ten poor people an average of two meals (i.e. lunch and supper), or one poor person for ten days

c)    Or clothe ten poor people enough clothes to cover majority of their bodies.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.


[1] درر الحكام شرح غرر الأحكام (1/ 212)

(قوله وهو واجب في المنذور) أقول والنذر لا يكون إلا باللسان، ولو نذر بقلبه لا يلزمه بخلاف النية؛ لأن النذر عمل اللسان والنية المشروعة انبعاث القلب على شأن أن يكون لله تعالى كذا في البزازية


الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين (رد المحتار) (2/ 433)

قال في شرح الملتقى والنذر عمل اللسان


فتاوی دار العلوم زکریا (470/4)

بصورت مسئولہ زبان سے تلفظ ضروری ہے، صرف دل کے ارادہ سے نذر منعقد نہیں ہوگی -


[2] الدر المختار شرح تنوير الأبصار وجامع البحار (ص: 284)

(إن جد) الشرط (و) إن علقه (بما لم يرده كإن زنيت بفلانة) مثلا فحنثت (وفى) بنذره (أو كفر) ليمينه (على المذهب) لانه نذر بظاهره يمين بمعناه

فيخير ضرورة.


الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين (رد المحتار) (3/ 739)

 ولذا صح النذر في قوله: إن زنيت بفلانة لكنه يتخير بينه وبين كفارة اليمين لأنه إذا كان لا يريده يصير فيه معنى اليمين فيتخير


فتاوی دار العلوم زکریا (493/4)

بصورت مسئولہ شخص مذکور کو اختیار ہے چاہے دس ہزار رینڈ صدقہ کرے یا کفارہ یمین اداکرے -



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