Did Muhammad violate his own rules of fasting?
In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful
There is none worthy of worship except Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah
Muslims who believe in the Messiah,
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani (as)

Did Muhammad violate his own rules of fasting?

The purpose of the Islamic fast is spiritual development. The Qur’an declares, “O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you, as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may become righteous.” [2]

Believers achieve this spiritual development by giving up allowed physical pleasures (eating, drinking, consorting with spouses) and all manner of forbidden activities for the sake of God. Abu Hurairah relates that Prophet Muhammad said, “Whoever does not give up forged speech and evil actions, Allah is not in need of his leaving his food and drink (that is, Allah will not accept his fasting).” [3]

 Further, Muslims are encouraged to intensify their prayers, study of the Qur’an, and charity. It is related that during Ramadan, Prophet Muhammad’s “own concern for and care of the poor, the needy, the sick and the orphan was intensified manifold, and that his charity knew no limit.” [4]

 With this understanding of fasting in mind, we address this allegation. Critics cite the following Hadith as evidence:

 A man asked the Messenger of Allah about approaching his wife while he was fasting (that is, to kiss her, fondle her, without having sexual relation with her), and the Messenger of Allah gave him concession. Another man came and asked him (about the same), and he forbade him. Behold! Such as was given concession was an old man, and the other was forbidden was a young man. [5]

 The translator himself explicates the meaning of al-mubasharah, or “approaching his wife,” in parentheses, because in other contexts, the term can mean sexual intercourse. Sexual intercourse is prohibited during a fast, and such exceptions were never granted to anyone. It was unclear, however, whether one could engage in lesser forms of intimacy (also a meaning of al-mubasharah). As the young man in question may have been carried away by his passions during lesser intimacy, he was not allowed this concession. Elder men were allowed, including Prophet Muhammad, who was already forty at the advent of Islam, and older still when married to A’isha. A’isha also reports in the other Hadith Wilders cites that the two were intimate during the fast without engaging in sexual intercourse. This is an important distinction that Wilders ignores—perhaps because it undermines his point altogether.



[1] Geert Wilders, Marked for Death: Islam’s War Against the West and Me, 62 (2012).
[2] Qur’an 2:184.
[3] Bukhari, Book on Fasting, Chapter on the one who does not quit lying, etc.
[4] Muhammad Zafrulla Khan, “Islamic Worship,” p. 77, London, 1970..
[5] Sunan Abu Dawud, Narrative 14:2387, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah 56 (2008). Wilders cites the Hadith as Abu Dawud 13:2381 from some other edition.

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