Islamic Education

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Purification or Taharah



 Taharah word is derived from Tahir which means hygiene, lustration or purity. Islam focuses too much on purification or taharah that it is considered as a key of belief.Taharah is the most important ritual in Islam. Taharah does not only mean the cleanliness of body but it includes the clothes, soul, surroundings and thoughts of a person. It is obligatory for a muslim to observe cleanliness especially while praying and performing other worships. The purification has its own conditions that are considered to be fulfilled in its full form as told by our religion.

Types of Taharah

There are two forms of taharah. 

  1. Taharah e kabira 
  2. Taharah e saghira 

The brief explanation of both types of Taharah is as follow

Taharah e Kabira

Ghusl or mandatory washing of the body ritually with proper rules and regulations of Islam is known as Taharah e kabira. 

Taharah e Saghira 

Taharah e saghira means Ablution (Wudu) and Dry Ablution (Tayamum). 

  • Wudu or ablution means washing open parts of the body before prayers. 
  • Tayamum or dry ablution is purifying body parts with dust if water is not available or due to some disability. 

Purifying Agent or Mutahirrat

For the purpose of Taharah, water is used to purify or clean the body parts or other things. On unavailability of water, dry earth or dust can be used symbolically for this purpose. 

And it is He who sends the winds as good tidings before His mercy, and We send down from the sky pure waterSurah al Furqan verse 48. 

 Types of water to be used

Not all types of water can be used for  taharah. Following can be used for this purpose. 

  • Rain water 
  • Well water 
  • Stream water 
  • Running water 
  • Water melted from snow 
  • Stagnant water can be used if it is free from any impurity or if the water body is so big (more than 550 liters) that impurities cannot make the whole water body impure like  sea, lakes, ponds or ocean. 

Water not to be used

Water is a purifier but there are some conditions when water is not used as a purifier. 

  • When color, odor or taste of water is changed. 
  • When, in a small body of water, there is some impurity. 
  • Juices from fruits or flowers like rose water or apple juice. 
  • Saliva 

Conditions to do Taharah: 

If someone comes in contact with the things which are considered impure (najas) according to Islam then the person should perform Taharah. Impure or najas things are as follows. 

  • Stool of animals or humans 
  • Urine of anyone 
  • Ejaculate (semen) 
  • Pigs 
  • liquor or any intoxicating liquids 
  • Blood of humans and haram animals 
  • Corpse 
  • dogs 

Things need to be cleaned: 

Anything which becomes impure by coming in contact with the impure things should be cleaned and make pure. 

  • Body 
  • Clothes 

And your clothing purifySurah al Mudassir verse 4.  

  • Utensils 
  • Shoes 
  • Piece of earth or floor 

Proof of Taharah from Quran: 

And uncleanliness avoidSurah al Mudasir verse 5. 

It is narrated in Surah Baqarah verse 222 

Indeed, Allah loves those who are constantly repentant and loves those who purify themselves.” 

O you who have believed, when you rise to [perform] prayer, wash your faces and your forearms to the elbows and wipe over your heads and wash your feet to the ankles. And if you are in a state of janabah, then purify yourselves. But 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 do not find water, then seek clean earth and wipe over your faces and hands with it. Allah does not intend to make difficulty for you, but He intends to purify you and complete His favor upon you that you may be grateful. Surah al Maeda verse 6. 

 Things to avoid when not pure: 

Following are the things which should be avoided when one’s body or clothes are impure. 

  • Salah 
  • Fasting (if ejaculated or menstruating)  
  • Touching Quran 

 (If you find any mistake in this article please feel free to contact us and point it out. We will try to correct it in the light of Quran and Sunnah. May Allah bless us all with the authentic knowledge of Islam. May this effort of ours ease the way of Jannah for our family).  

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