Questions and Answers
Question: The earth is one of
the purifying agents. Following the example of a shoe's sole that can be
purified by walking on the earth, would the same rule apply to car tires?
Answer: The earth cannot purify the
Question: Where does the domino effect
of mutanajjis items stop when it is no longer wet? (1)
Answer: The first mutanajjis item
would make the item that comes into contact with it impure; similarly, the
second mutanajjis would make the item that comes into contact with it impure;
but the third mutanajjis can no longer make other items impure, irrespective
of whether it is wet or dry.
Question: If a dog licks my body or
clothes, how should I purify it?
Answer: It is sufficient to wash it once. However,
if the water is little, it is necessary to rid it of the water by
Question: Are the Sikhs considered to be
among the followers of the past revealed religions like the Jews and the
Answer: They are not
counted among the People of the (Revealed) Books (the Ahlul
Question: Are the Bhuddhists among the
Answer: They are not
Question: Can Muslim, who rents a fully
furnished house in the West, consider everything in it to be ritually pure as
long as he does not find any trace of impure things in it, even if the
previous occupant was from Ahlul Kitab, i.e., a Christian or a Jew? What if
the previous occupant was a Bhuddhist or an atheist who does not believe in
God and the prophets?
Answer: Yes, he
can consider everything in the house ritually pure as long as he does not know
that it has become impure. Just conjecture or doubt about impurity is of no
Question: The floor of most houses in
the West is covered with carpet which is glued to the floor in such a way that
it is difficult to lift it off. How can such a carpet be rendered pure
(tahir), if it becomes impure with urine or blood? The water used to purify in
both the cases could be qalil or kathir. Please explain the ruling in both
Answer: If it is possible to
wipe the water off the carpet by using a piece of cloth or a vacuum cleaner,
it can be purified with qalil water, provided that the water is wiped off the
carpet, in the process. Conversely, it must be purified by kathir water [i.e.,
by using a hose pipe connected to the tap].
Question: In the West, there are many
public laundry places in which Muslims and non-Muslims wash their clothes. Is
it permissible for us to pray in the clothes washed in such facilities,
especially when we have no knowledge whether or not the washing machines are
connected to the kurr water (2) at some stages of the washing, and
whether or not it purifies the clothes in the process of washing?
Answer: There is no problem in praying in those
clothes that were pure before washing them [in such facilities] as long as you
are not aware that they have become impure. [In other words, what goes in the
public washing machine as pure comes out as pure unless you are sure that it
has become impure.]
Similarly, [you can pray in] the impure clothes [that were washed in the public laundry machines] provided that you are reassured:
that the impure element, if any, has been washed
that the pure water covered the entire impure area twice (if
it had become impure by urine and even if the water was connected to kurr
source as an obligatory precaution) or just once (if it had become impure by
and that the water was removed from the clothes by wringing or
other similar method [i.e., spinning of the machine] if it was
However, if you are not sure and just have conjecture that the garment has been purified as per religious requirement, the previously impure garment will still be considered impure and praying in it would not be valid.
Question: Can the clothes washed with
liquid detergent in laundry facilities owned by a non-Muslim be considered
tahir while knowing that Muslims as well as non-Muslims wash their clothes
Answer: If you do not know
that the clothes have come into contact with a source of najasah, you can
consider them tahir (pure).
Question: Some soaps contain pigs' fat
or other animals not slaughtered Islamically. Furthermore, we do not know
whether or not chemical change has taken place in the manufacturing process.
Can such soaps be considered tahir? [Chemical change is a purifying agent in
the sense that it purifies a najis item.]
Answer: If it is proven to contain those [impure]
elements, it should be considered impure, except if the occurrence of chemical
change is proven. Such a change is not proven in manufacturing of
Question: A toothbrush that contains
bristles from the hair of a pig: is it permissible to buy, sell and use it?
Does the mouth become impure by using such a toothbrush?
It is permissible to buy, sell and use it; however, the mouth will become
impure by using it; and the mouth will become pure by taking that toothbrush
out and getting rid of the remaining toothpaste from the mouth.
Question: If blood is seen in the yolk
or the white part of the egg, does it make the egg impure and haram for us? Is
there a solution for it?
clot of blood inside the egg is pure, but it is haram [for consumption].
Therefore, the egg can be eaten by removing the blood from it, provided it not
very minute and been absorbed in it. [In the latter case, is not removable,
then the egg becomes haram.]
Question: Are alchoholic beverages
pure? Is beer pure?
Answer: There is
no doubt about the impurity of alchoholic drinks. As far as beer (fuqa') is
concerned, it is impure on the basis of precaution; however, there is no doubt
in it being haram.
Question: The people residing in Europe
are of different faiths, nationalities and religions; and when we buy moist or
wet food items, the shopkeeper may touch it with his hands. Since we do not
know his religion, can we consider that food as pure?
As long as it is not known that the hands of the shopkeeper were najis, the
food is to be considered tahir.
Question: What about the leather
products made in a European country, if we are unaware of the source of that
leather? It is said that some European countries import cheap leather from
Muslim countries and then use it for manufacturing various products. Can we
consider such leather pure? Are we allowed to say salat in them? Can such a
weak probability [about it originating from a Muslim country] be given any
Answer: If the probability
of the leather originating from a zabiha (an animal slaughtered Islamically)
source is so weak that people would not normally give any credence (for
example, the probability of 2%), it is to be considered impure and this cannot
be used in salat. But if the probability is not so weak, it can be considered
pure and using it in salat would be permissible.
1. Translator's Note: An item which is impure by itself is known as 'ayn najis or simply najis; the item that becomes impure by coming into wet contact with an 'ayn najis is known as "mutanajjis," that is impure by secondary reason.
2. Translator's Note: All laundry machines are connected to kurr source because it comes from the main reservior supplying the water to the city.