The effects of illegally breaking one’s fast and the response to the accusations of a Sunni scholar

08 December 2023



News Summary :
The words of Ayatollah Fazel Lankarani in his lecture on jurisprudence about the consequences of illegally breaking one’s fast and answering the questions of the Sunni Maulvi
آخرین رویداد ها
In the name of God, the most merciful, the most compassionate
Praise be to God, the Lord of the worlds, and peace and blessings be upon Prophet Muhammad and his immaculate family

In the second volume of his book Man La Yahazurhu al-Faqih, the late Sheikh Saduq (may God bless him and grant him peace) has narrated a hadith from Imam Sadiq (peace be upon him) which says, "If a person breaks his fast of one day in the month of Ramadan, the spirit of faith will leave him.”
Before the start of the holy month of Ramadan, we must say this hadith to the public through the media, especially the national TV.
Today, one problem in the society is the issue of some people illegally breaking their fast. Although in general, if a person judged fairly, the obedience of our people to God, the Blessed and Exalted, prevails in regards with fasting. Although we may see cases of some people illegally breaking their fast more than before, it does not mean that fasting people are fewer than non-fasting people. After all, many people are sick due to an illness or other reasons and they cannot fast. The Almighty God Himself says, "And whoever is sick or on a journey, should fast a number of days from another month, Allah wants ease for you not hardship." Therefore, if a person is sick or on a journey, fasting is not obligatory on him.
But the abovementioned hadith says, "If a person illegally breaks his fast of one day in the month of Ramadan." Therefore, it speaks about a person who breaks his fast of one day of Ramadan without any excuse. He is neither a traveler nor sick, he is in his home town and he knows that fasting is obligatory on him, but he does not fast in defiance of the command of God the Blessed and Exalted. There is no doubt that this person has committed a sin and a forbidden for which he will be punished in the life hereafter, unless he repents and asks for forgiveness, in which case his punishment will be waived.
But what is important is very grave side effect that follows this sin according to this narration. The hadith says: "The spirit of faith will leave him." This person should not think that he broke just one fast for a day and for example did not want to be associated with the religious minded. The side effect of this is the departure of the spirit of faith from him.
The apparent meaning of this hadith is that the aspect of the human soul that accepts faith, accepts truth and understands what is right and wrong, leaves such a person and he becomes an example of those who "God has sealed their hearts". A person who intentionally breaks his fast of even one day, even if he is religiously very mindful in his transactions and other matters of his life, prays regularly and pays his zakat and khums, nevertheless the spirit of faith and the aspect of the soul which accepts faith will leave his heart and he will no longer accept advice. Preaching to him will be useless and no matter how much he is advised, he will not listen.
According to a hadith, the prophets (peace be upon them) have five souls, the believers have four souls, and the disbelievers have three souls. It is clear that the hadith does not mean that there are multiple souls in a person; rather, it explains the different states of the human soul. Just as we say that the human soul has the powers of anger, imagination and lust, this narration also says that the human soul has different levels. The levels mentioned for the prophets are: first the Holy Spirit, then the Spirit of Faith, then the Spirit of Power, then the Spirit of Desire, and then the Spirit of the Body.
With the Holy Spirit, the prophet is able to receive revelation. That is, because God Almighty "confers favor upon whom He wills" and blesses his chosen servants, he placed in the prophets the ability to receive revelation. Ordinary people do not have the ability to receive revelation. God Almighty gave this virtue to prophets but not to others.
The Spirit of Faith invites one to worship and obey God and not associate anyone with Him. With the Spirit of Power, a person finds the power to confront the enemy and obtain lawful things, and with the Spirit of Desire, he benefits from lawful pleasures, and finally, he moves about with the Spirit of the Body. Scholars have expounded on states of the soul in this way, and in philosophy and other disciplines they have been called as the powers of the self. In any case, the Spirit of Faith is the power that prepares a person to accept truth and worship God.
According to the narration mentioned earlier, the effect of intentionally breaking the fast is that the spirit of the faith leaves such a person. This means that from now on, he loses the readiness to perform worship. In other words, breaking the fast on purpose in Ramadan will cause him to leave his prayers if he was already praying. It causes him to leave paying zakat, not pursue halal earning, and eventually associates others with God.
Illegally breaking the fast has this very dangerous effect that leads to "seal of the hearts". I have not seen anyone explain this connection between "the departure of the spirit of faith" and "Allah sealing their hearts".
A similar hadith has been narrated by Kulaini in the second volume of Kafi on page 281, according to which Asbagh bin Nubatah has been narrated to have said that a man came to the Commander of the Faithful (peace be upon him) and said, “Some people think that a believer does not commit adultery, does not steal, does not drink wine, does not take usury, does not shed blood unjustly, while we see with our own eyes many people who are believers commit these sins, are they not believers?”
The Imam said, "You are right. I have also heard the same thing from the Messenger of God (peace and blessings of God be upon him).” What the Holy Prophet said is based on the Holy Qur'an. Referring to the verses of Surah Al-Waqeah, in which people are divided into three groups: Companions of the Right, Companions of the Left, and the Forerunners, the Imam says that the Forerunners are the prophets in whom God placed five souls. The Companions of the Right are the believers in whom God has placed four souls.
The Companions of the Left are the Jews and Christians. According to 2:146 they know the Prophet as they know their children (through the descriptions about him in their books) but some of them hide the truth. Accepting the truth is one of the things of the soul of faith. If someone knows the truth and ignores it and puts it under his feet, we understand that this person does not have the Spirit of Faith.
See what happens when the spirit of faith leaves a person. Some people know the truth, they know that God Almighty has made hijab obligatory in the Qur'an, but they disagree with God's ruling. Sometimes, when they are told that God said this, they say that God did not say it! Hijab is just but one example, usury is another example, and the same applies to all other rulings.
If someone "believes in some verses but disbelieves in others" according to the holy verse of the Quran, this person is someone whose spirit of faith has left his heart. We have to tell people these things. Many of those who illegally break their fasting do not know these things. They say that we will make up for it later or repent. They consider the issue to be very trivial. One of the ways of Satan's temptations is that he decorates the ugliness of a sin and says that it is nothing! To the extent that he says if I embezzled 3 billion, it would be nothing, if I deliberately touched an unmarried woman or looked at an unmarried woman, it would be nothing, or at most it would be a minor sin.
This is how Satan leads people astray. He minimizes the ugliness of sins in the eyes of people. One gossips and slanders behind people and then says, "I wanted to say good, but I also said bad about him,” or “everyone knows what I am saying." This is beautifying the ugliness of a sin.
If the soul of faith leaves a person, sin becomes a normal thing in his eyes. Even killing becomes a normal thing in his eyes. First he kills an ant and then a bigger creature until he kills a human being and killing creatures becomes a normal thing for him. The departure of the spirit of faith leads a person to the point where, God forbid, he kills his child or his parents.
These enlightening words should be said more to the people. Today, we the seminary students are in a very critical situation, the enemy day and night tries to tarnish the image of the clerics in the eyes of people while the clergy, in terms of living conditions, are one of the poor classes in the society if not the poorest. Unfortunately, our people do not know this either. At the same time, they blame all the clergy for the livelihood problems that exist in the country. Meat becomes expensive, they hold the clerics responsible, why? Most of those who make the economic decisions in the country non-clerics. The economic experts are mostly not related to the clergy whatsoever. How many of the economic ministers were clergymen?
A few nights ago, I received a message from one of the clerics who wrote that since the beginning of Ramadan, I have not been able to get a single piece of meat for my family. We have many such people in the seminary. Economic experts are all academics and non-mullahs. People should know this.
Another problem is that very few students turn to things that are not at all worthy of the clergy, and put at stake the image of the clergy. Poems that used to be read by those who delved in debauchery are now read by a cleric wearing a turban in a meeting and people start clapping, this is not at all compatible with the dignity of the clergy.
We claim that our purpose is to guide people. We claim to have learned Islam and we want to teach it to people. Yes, there is happiness and making people happy in Islam, but these kinds of things are not our job! We don't say that the job of the clergy is only promoting mourning and shedding tears, but certain things are not becoming of the clergy. When people want to ask me a question on religion, when they see that I also put myself in the position of a person who just wants to make people laugh and it doesn't matter to him whether what he does or says is halal or haram or whether this assembly will change into a gathering of depravity, then even if I read the Qur'anic verses for them they will not listen to me and they have a right not to listen.
They should see from me concern for religion. They should see that my ambition is to guide people to the right path not the path of Satan. Unfortunately, today we see things in the cyberspace that are not at all compatible with the dignity of the clergy.
Many are working against the clergy today, and this makes it more important for us to be careful about our actions and words. Let's try to speak authentically, not to say things that are not yet proved. Today, when there are a lot of taunts and slanders, from inside and outside, from acquaintances and strangers, doing his duty for a cleric is a great jihad. We have to be steadfast and one should not say I will give up and leave. It is easy for a person to choose a career that is not accompanied by problems, one does not hear taunts, and he lives a peaceful life, but we have come to stand, we have come to stand in front of Satan and demons, we have come to tell people that God's way is the one stated in the Quran and explained in the words of the Prophet and the Imams. 
A bigger pain in the virtual space is that some so-called Sunni clerics who claim that they read the Quran a lot but the fact is that they do not understand the verses of the Quran correctly, they say that anyone who calls anyone other than God is a polytheist, and say that the polytheists of the present age are the same as the polytheists of the early Islam. 
Is praising the Amir al-Mu'minin (peace be upon him) and inviting people to accept his wilayah an invitation to someone other than God?! If this is invitation to someone other than God, then you must believe that the Prophet (PBUH) who invited people to Amir al-Mu'minin (A.S.) throughout his life and there was not a day that he did not mention the virtues of Amir al-Mu'minin (A.S.), was also, God forbid, a polytheist!
What are these false accusations and unfair proportions that you are spewing? The governorship of the Amir al-Mu'minin is by the order of God, the Exalted. Have not your scholars narrated in seven places of Sahih al-Bukhari that the Prophet in the last moments of his blessed life said, “Bring me a pen and ink so that I write something upon which people will not go astray after me.” But some people did not let that happen and said there was no need and, "Hasbuna Kitab Allah"! So tell me, what is the verdict regarding those who opposed the Prophet? And you call us the polytheists?
It is narrated in Bukhari's Sahih that the second caliph uttered the very impolite sentence "This man is hallucinating." What is the verdict about someone who opposes the Prophet of God? Have you studied jurisprudence and the Quran? The invitation to the Wilayat of Amir al-Mu'minin is an invitation to God, because God said to the Prophet, "And if you did not do it, then you would have not delivered His message." It cannot be said that "and if you did not do it" is about friendship between people and or is about rules of eating and drinking. Is it possible that the entire mission of the Prophet can be nothing because of not saying a single ruling?! Of course, there are a significant number of Sunni scholars who do not say such nonsense and we are grateful to them.
Not long ago, one of them said something that everyone disagreed with, but we see again that some people insist on saying such baseless things. This illiterate person says frankly that if someone believes in intercession, he is a polytheist, or if someone asks for healing and the like from other than God, or visits the shrine of Ahl al-Bayt (as) is a polytheist. Have you not read "with permission from God" in the Quran? They say that anyone who says that someone other than God has knowledge of the unseen is a polytheist. At least take a look at the Qur'an, which makes an exception and says that certain people from among the servants "by the will of God" can have knowledge of the unseen, or "by the will of God" can intercede. "With permission from God" one can make the dead alive and the make the blind see. The Shiites say that the infallible imams have this power by God's permission, not independently of God. With these words that are against the truth and against the Quran, they mislead their youth and this is another problem.
The purpose of stating these things is to show you how heavy the duty of the Shia clerics in our time is. We need God’s help and should ask for help from the infallible imams (peace be upon them). According to the honorable verse "those who preach God's messages", we should preach God's messages and not fear anyone other than God.
We tell such people that intercession, healing, bringing the dead back to life, or knowledge of the unseen, are all within the scope of God's permission. What God has not given permission to is worshiping other than Him. We don't worship graves, we don't worship who is buried in the grave, we don't worship the Prophet, and we don't worship Imam Ali. We believe that if we understand the essence of the Wilayat, then we can worship God correctly. Nevertheless, they distort this and then accuse us of improper beliefs.
I hope that in these days and in the nights of Qadr, the Exalted God help us to understand the Night of Qadr and His Names and Attributes. The month of Ramadan is the month of getting closer to God and internalizing His attributes in ourselves. May God bring us closer to him.
God's mercy and blessings be upon you

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Ramadhan Ramadan Fast Breaking the Fast