Fatwa: # 44887
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Date: 10th May 2020


My mother wants to fast while she has an ulcer, what should she do?


Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

Tomorrow is Ramadan and my mother wants to fast at all costs, despite the fact that she has been advised not to. She has an ulcer and it hurts her every time she fasts. She's a doctor and she knows it's not good for her, but she won't listen to me or her fellow doctors. 
When she was young, her parents didn't give her a religious upbringing, so she doesn't want to be in more debt this Ramadan.
How do you feel about that? Should she continue to fast or should she stop? Last year, we took her to the hospital several times during Ramadan.
Thank you very much for your time.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

I pray that this message finds you and your mother well, Allāh willing. May Allāh grant your mother a complete and quick cure.

In principle, if one is sick and his sickness will be aggravated by fasting, he is exempt from fasting.  If one is expected to recover from his illness, then he is obligated to make up these fasts once he recovers. However, if the sickness is permanent or terminal, and there is no hope for recovery, then one must pay Fidya (monetary compensation) for every missed fast. The cost of one day's Fidya is the same as Ṣadaqat al-Fiṭr.[1]

Accordingly, your mother is not obligated to keep her fasts. Islam is a beautiful religion, and Allāh is the Most Merciful and All-Wise. Through His infinite mercy, Allāh has obligated upon us the fasting of Ramaḍān, so that we can reap the benefits and compassion He has to offer in this particular month. Allāh's mercy and love for us are such that he also exempts us from our obligations when particular challenges befall us. He does not want us to endure difficulties and hardships. This is an incredible bounty that our beloved Allāh has provided us, and we should be thankful for it.

On top of this already immense blessing and mercy, Allāh has made it such that he still allows us to reap the benefits of this month, and attain an equal amount of reward as those who are fasting based on mere intention, desire, and sincerity of the individual. In your mother's situation, she is not deprived of His everlasting mercy, nor will she be in debt to Allāh. She will be allowing herself to undergo another form of blessings provided by the All-Merciful.

Taking care of one's body is an obligation. Our bodies do not belong to us, but they belong to Allāh. Therefore, our bodies have a right over us to be taken care of as well. By doing so, she will be relieving herself of stress and pain, along with relieving all of her loved ones.

You should kindly explain this amazing blessing of Allāh upon her and how Allāh is showering her with his mercy.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Abrar Habib

Student - Darul Iftaa

New York City, New York, USA

Checked and Approved by,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.




[1] المبسوط للسرخسي (3/ 89)

لأنه وقع اليأس عن أداء الصوم في حقه فتقوم الفدية مقامه كما في حق الشيخ الفاني


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