Tolerance In Purification
All acts of worship in Islam are built upon tolerance, as this is an intrinsic trait in Islam. Allah, the Exalted, says: “Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah. Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured.” [13:28]
No one is overburdened. The Prophet s said: “Do those deeds which you can do easily, as Allah will not get tired of giving rewards till you get apathetic and tired of performing religious deeds.” (Bukhari)
All aspects of worship in Islam are in line with one’s natural disposition, and one is not burdened beyond his abilities. A Muslim is not overburdened beyond what he can withstand, even in terms of his acts of worship. Anas saw an elderly man, carried by his two sons, coming to the Masjid. The Prophet s asked: “Who is this?” They told him, this man has vowed to walk to the masjid, and he was very ill. The Prophet s said: “Allah is not in need of this man punishing himself.” (Bukhari)
When a Muslim falls ill, Allah will give the person the rewards for deeds that he would have done if he were not ill. The Prophet s said: “If a person falls ill, or travels, he would receive the rewards of his deeds that he would do if he was healthy.” (Bukhari)
Allah also loves that one takes the approach that easiest and permissible that He has laid out for Muslims. The Prophet s said: “Indeed Allah loves that one of you takes the license which He has given (to ease certain matters) in the same degree as He despises it when you do an act which is prohibited.” (Saheeh - Albaani)
Tolerance Of Islam In Purification
Purification is a necessity for the majority of acts of worship, and water is used as the medium for this purification.
- Water is always pure as long as its smell, color or taste does not change.
- Water that a cat has drunk from is lawful to use for the purpose of purification. Indeed Allah’s Messenger said regarding the cat: “It is not impure. It is one of those creatures that live in our attendance.” (Tirmidhi)
- When water is scarce and/or using water is detrimental to one’s health, they may use the dry ablution instead of water to purify themselves. Allah, the Exalted, says: “But if you are ill or on a journey or one of you comes from the place of relieving himself or you have had [intimate] contact with 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.” [5:6]
- It is also lawful for a Muslim to wipe over their socks when performing ablution. There are conditions that govern this, but in general, this has been legalized to make it easier for Muslims to purify themselves.
- All places are suitable for worship. A Muslim can perform prayers in any place except in a graveyard or a bathroom. The area chosen for prayer must also be free from any visible traces of filth. The Prophet s said: “I have been given five traits no other Prophet before was given. These include that every prophet was sent to his people individually, whereas I have been sent to mankind at large and the land is all a place of prayer so anyone who must perform prayers can perform prayers wherever he is.” (Bukhari)
- If there is a visible trace of filth, it can be removed with water. A Bedouin urinated in the Masjid of the Prophet s and the Prophet s said, “Pour water over his urine, for you have not been sent to make things difficult for others, rather to show ease.” (Nasaa’ee)
- Animal dropping of animals whose flesh is lawful for us to consume, is not considered an impurity, so if it touches one’s clothing or shoes, it would not be considered impure. The Prophet s was asked about performing prayers in sheep yards and he said it was lawful, but he forbade that one perform prayers in camel stables.