Islamic Education

All About Islam

Dry Ablution (Tayamum)



Tayamum means to aim or to decide. Tayamum is the alternative way of purification of body in case where water is not available. Ablution(Wudu) is essential to offer prayer or recite Holy Quran. But if water is not available then  the procedure of dry ablution is told by Islam and Sunnah.

Necessities of Tayamum

Anything which is derived from the soil can be used for this purpose. This includes the things which do not catch fire and which do not melts as well. It means that the wooden things cannot be used for the purpose of tayamum. The metals like gold, silver, steel etc which are melted when one puts them into fire can not be used as well. 

Materials Used for Tayamum

Things derived from earth can be used for dry ablution like

  • sand
  • soil
  • dust
  • stones

Conditions for dry ablution

Following are the conditions for dry ablution. 

Unavailability of Water

Dry ablution is permitted when water is unavailable in the nearby area. Some Islamic scholars say that the area of unavailability is 1 km per side but this is not right as no one can search for water in this area. So it is permitted to do dry ablution. 

If the time of praying is about to end

Another condition is that if water is unavailable and the time to pray is short so it is permitted to do dry ablution. Because it is not good to quit a prayer so dry ablution is permissible. 

Ablution must be done with clean things 

Another condition for dry ablution is that the thing which is used to purify ones body should also be pure. The things which are not clean cannot be used for this purpose. 

Procedure of Dry Ablution 

Given below is the procedure to perform dry ablution. 


Like normal ablution, the intention of performing dry ablution is necessary. 

Recite bismillah

After intention, it is necessary to recite bismillah. 

Pat both hands on sand simultaneously

Then the person should pat his both hands simultaneously on the sand or the object which he is using for the purpose of dry ablution. By patting both hands, the dust will stick to the hands . 

Clean excess dust

Then it us recommended to clean the excess dust or sand from the hands by rubbing them gently. 

Rub hands on the forehead

After cleaning excess dust, the person should rub both hands on his forehead by putting her thumbs at the sides of the face. The wrist should touch the forehead first. Then bring it down slowly till he bridge of the nose between the eyes while the both thumbs should touch the ends of the eyebrows. 

According to some Muslim scholars it is necessary to rub the hands on full face but this concept is not correct. 

Rub hands to the wrist

After rubbing the forehead, both the hands should  be rubbed to the wrist of the hand. Some scholars said that the hands and the arms should also be rubbed with the dust but it is not proven by Hadith. 

Touching the sand 

There is also a difference of opinion about how many times the sand should b touched for dry ablution. Some scholars says that touching the soil or other material once for this purpose is enough while others believe that one should touch the soul twice, once before rubbing the hands on forehead and second time before rubbing the hands. 

Proof from Quran and Sunnah 

Verse number 43 of surah Nissa quotes that. 

O you who have believed, do not approach prayer while you are intoxicated until you know what you are saying or in a state of janabah, except those passing through [a place of prayer], until you have washed [your whole body]. And if you are ill or on a journey or one of you comes from the place of relieving himself or you have contacted women and find no water, then seek clean earth and wipe over your faces and your hands [with it]. Indeed, Allah is ever Pardoning and Forgiving. 


Narrated `Imran bin Husain Al-Khuza`i: Allah’s Apostle saw a person sitting aloof and not praying with the people. He asked him, O so and so! What prevented you from offering the prayer with the people? He replied, O Allah’s Apostle! I am Junub and there is no water. The Prophet said, Perform Tayammum with clean earth and that will be sufficient for you. 

 (If you find any mistake in this article, feel free point it out we will try our best to correct it in the light of Quran and Sunnah. May Allah bless us all with the authentic knowledge of Islam)  


Next Post

Previous Post

Leave a Reply

© 2019 Islamic Education

Theme by Anders Norén