What is E’tikaf? information on Ramadan

E’tikaf is a form of worship. It is formed by staying in a Mosque for a certain time. It is Ehtiyat that one should stay with the intention to worship Allah by praying formal or informal prayers (supplications) although prayer is not a condition therein.

The time for this form of worship could be anytime when one is allowed to fast. The best time is the month of Ramadan, especially, the last ten (10) days.

Conditions for E’tikaf:

1. Intention as in the rest of the worship acts. It is necessary that the intention be made at the beginning of E’tikaf so that the rule, requiring the worship act to be completed with intention, be followed thoroughly from the beginning to the end. The decision made at the beginning of the night to start E’tikaf from the beginning of the following day will be open to objection. However, if one decides to start it from the beginning of the night it is not an offense to do so.

One is not allowed to change one’s mind from one E’tikaf to another of the same qualities or different.

2. Belief in Islam.
3. Freedom from mental illness.
4. Fasting; thus the E’tikaf of one who cannot fast for some reason is not valid.
5. Duration; which is three continuous days at least. It could be more but not less than three days.

If it is started from the beginning of a day the two nights in between will be part of the duration. Less than three days is not considered E’tikaf.

That it must take place in one of these Mosques:

(a) The holy Mosque of Makkah
(b) the holy Mosque of the Prophet in Medina
(c) the holy Mosque of Kufa
(d) the holy Mosque of Basrah, and
(e) the Mosque which is assigned for the Friday prayer in any town or city.

It is Ehtiyat, however, to complete it in any of the first four Mosques.The roof and basement of a Mosque is part of the same and it is valid to complete Etikaf in such places of a Mosque.

Permission of the people whose permission are required such as the master for the slave, husband and parents for the wife and children if this will be against the right of the husband or causes trouble to the parents.

6. Completing it in the Mosque where it was started. Thus, going out of the Mosque without an
acceptable reason will invalidate the E’tikaf, regardless, one knows the rule or is ignorant or has
gone out because of forgetfulness, except in the case of an emergency or one being forced or it is because of some need such as using wash room or having Taharat.
One is allowed to come out of the Mosque during E’tikaf to take part in the burial of a deceased or to visit an ailing one; Going out of the Mosque for a time long enough to cause the E’tikaf to become as non-existing will be considered as invalidating the same, even if one has not done it out of one’s own choice.
If one needs to have Ghusl/bath during the E’tikaf and it is possible for him to have it inside the
Mosque, and is not allowed to go out unless the reason for Ghusl requires him not to stay inside the Mosque.
E’tikaf is originally an optional worship act but it may become obligatory because of a vow etc.

Also Read:
Things to avoid during E’tikaf

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