Sunday, November 19, 2017 - 30 Safar 1439
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The fasting hours of this year’s Ramadan will exceed 19 hours in my country. How could we endure fasting?

The fasting hours of this year’s Ramadan will exceed 19 hours in my country. How could we endure fasting?

Answer

Muslims in countries where the fasting hours are 18 hours or more are to estimate the time for starting and breaking their fast. The principle for estimating fasting hours that extend beyond the normal hours is derived from actual circumstances. It is difficult for a person to fast continuously for 18 hours or more and experts have determined the inability of the human body to tolerate such extended periods of fasting which definitely poses harm. If this is so, it cannot be maintained that harm is the objective of Islamic law.

According to the opinion implemented for fatwa, Muslims in such countries should fast according to the timing of Mecca because it is Umm Al-Qura [the mother of cities]. This means that Muslims in countries where the fasting hours are 18 or more are to start fasting according to the time of dawn in their countries, count the number of hours that people in Mecca fast and break their fast when the people of Mecca end theirs. This is to be observed daily; Mecca [prayer] times are available online. For example, if dawn in such countries is at 3 am and people in Mecca fast for 15 hours, the time for people in these countries to break their fast is at 6 pm according to their local time.
And God the Almighty knows best.
 

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