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Question 389: Salamualekum members. Please, in the month of Ramadan, is it always required to break our fast before magrib prayer or we should pray before breaking the fast?

Answer 389: In the holy Quran Allah (swt) says: And eat and drink until the whiteness of the day becomes distinct from the blackness of the night at dawn Then complete the fast till night And have not contact with them while you keep to the mosques These are the Limits of Allah, so do not go near them Thus does Allah make clear His communications for men that they may guard (against evil).[1]

Fasting means that a person must, in obedience to the commands of Allah, from the time of Adhan for Fajr prayers up to Maghrib, avoid those things from which a person keeping fast must abstain.[2]

To further explain, just before dawn a column of whiteness rises upwards from the east. It is called the first dawn. When this whiteness spreads, it is called the second dawn, and the prime time for Fajr prayers.[4] It is exactly the time to refrain from the things which invalidate the fast. Maghrib is the time when the redness in the eastern sky appearing after sunset disappears in the horizon.[5] This is the beginning of Maghrib time and the end of the time for imsak.[6]

According to maraja’ (ha), in order to get more rewards, it is mustahab to break your fast after Maghrib and Isha prayers, unless somebody is waiting for you or due to fasting you are not able to offer your prayers properly.[7]

It should be noted that Hudhur al-qalb in worshiping Allah, the Almighty means to not allow thoughts that have to do with material matters, whether they are personal or pertaining to others, and in general, thoughts that are in contradiction with the hereafter to enter one’s mind. But thoughts that conform to the nature of Ibadat (worship) do not disturb hudhur al-qalb in anyway.[8] So, if offering your Maghrib and Isha prayers while fasting cause to allow thoughts of material matters in your mind it would be better to break your fast and offer your prayers later.

For further information in this regards, please refer to the following answer:

Index: Things from which a person keeping fast must abstain & Kaffarah (Expiation), answer 372.

Index: Ruling of breaking the fast after disappearing the redness in the sky, answer 382.

Index: Studying in the month of Ramadhan is not a valid excuse to escape fasting, answer 572.

Index: Using Asthma Inhaler does not break the Fast, answer 575.

Index: Number of things which are disapproved (Makruh) for a person observing fast, answer 566.

Index: Fasting and prayers of a traveler who travel after Zuhr, answer 384.

Index: Qada Fast for a person reverted to Islam, answer 196.

Index: Rules of prayers and fasting performed without ghusl, answer 034.

Index: Fast in countries with long days, answer 106.

Index: Niyyat for Fasting: How to make intention to Fast Ramadan, answer 627.

[1] . Surah Baqarah, verse 187.

[2] . Tawzih al-Masael of Maraja (with annotation of Imam Khomieni), Vol. 1, Pg. 880.

[3] –  Tawzih al-Masail (with annotation by Imam Khomeini), vol.1, pg.88.

[4] – Ibid, vol.1, pg.411

[5] – Khomeini, Sayyid Rohullah Musavi, Tawzih al-Masail (by Imam Khomeini), pg.164, issue No.730, First, 1436 A.H;  Jawahir al-Kalam, Vol. 16, Pg. 384.

[6] . Adopted from answer 382. (Index: Ruling of breaking the fast after disappearing the redness in the sky).

[7] . Tawzih al-Masael (with annotation of Imam Khomeini (ra), Vol. 1, Pg. 969; Tabatabaee, Yazdi, Sayyid Muhammad Kazem, al-Urwa al-Wuthqa, Vol. 2, Pg. 213.

[8] . Adopted from answer 014 (Index:  Hudhur al-Qalb in worshiping Allah).

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