Ibn Qudamah on seclusion in the mosque during Ramadan, Al-I’tikaf

July 16, 2013


By Abu Amina Elias for FaithinAllah.org

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Ibn Qudamah writes in his book Umdat fil Fiqh:

Seclusion in the mosque (i’tikaf) means staying inside the mosque for the worship of Allah the Exalted. It is the recommended prophetic tradition (sunnah) unless it is done as a vow, in which case the vow must be fulfilled.

For a woman, it is valid in every mosque except the mosque inside her own home.

For a man, it is only valid in the mosque in which congregational prayer is performed, and it is better to seek seclusion in a mosque in which the Friday prayer is performed.

The one who vows to seek seclusion or perform prayer in a particular mosque may do so in a different mosque, unless he vows to do so inside one of the three sacred mosques in Mecca, Medina, or Jerusalem.

If he vows to seek seclusion in Sacred Mosque in Mecca (masjid al-haram), then he must do so there. However, if he vows to seek seclusion in the mosque of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, then he may do so in the Sacred Mosque instead. If he vows to seek seclusion in the furthest mosque in Jerusalem (masjid al-aqsa), then he may also do so in one of the other two mosques.

It is preferable for the person seeking seclusion to keep himself busy with acts that bring him closer to Allah the Exalted and to avoid words and deeds that are not his concern, although his seclusion is not invalidated by doing so.

He should not leave the mosque unless it is necessary or for some need, unless he makes a condition. He must not touch a woman with desire.

If he is asked about an ill person or someone else while on his way, he is allowed not to visit him.

Source: Umdat fil Fiqh

وهو لزوم المسجد لطاعة الله تعالى فيه وهو سنة إلا أن يكون نذرا فيلزم الوفاء به

ويصح من المرأة في كل مسجد غير مسجد بيتها ولا يصح من الرجل إلا في مسجد تقام فيه الجماعة واعتكافه في مسجد تقام فيه الجمعة أفضل

ومن نذر الاعتكاف أو الصلاة في مسجد فله فعل ذلك في غيره إلا المساجد الثلاثة فإن نذر ذلك في المسجد الحرام لزمه وإن نذر الاعتكاف في مسجد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم جاز له أن يعتكف في المسجد الحرام وإن نذر أن يعتكف في المسجد الأقصى فله فعله في أيهما أحب

ويستحب للمعتكف الاشتغال بفعل القرب واجتناب ما لا يعنيه من قول وفعل ولا يبطل الاعتكاف بشيء من ذلك

ولا يخرج من المسجد إلا لما لا بد له منه إلا أن يشترط ولا يباشر امرأة وإن سأل عن المريض في طريقه أو عن غيره ولم يعرج إليه جاز

العمدة في الفقه كتاب الصيام باب الاعتكاف

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.