Commentary on the Hadith of Making Ghusl from al-Janabaah

Praise be to Allah,


Narrated Maimoonah (R.A):


“Water was placed for the ablution of Allaah’s Messenger (PBUH) after Janaabah. He poured water with his right hand over his left twice or thrice and then washed his private parts and rubbed his hands on the earth or on a wall twice or thrice and then rinsed his mouth, washed his nose by putting water in it and then blowing it out, then washed his face and forearms and poured water over his head. And washed his body. Then he shifted from that place and washed his feet. I brought a piece of cloth, but he did not take it and removed the traces of water from his body with his hand.”[i]



Important Points Derived from the Hadeeth:



  1. The previous hadeeth mentions the washing of the hands, without any details, whereas the present hadeeth specifies the number of washings as two or three times.


  1. In this hadeeth, it is mentioned that after the washing of the hands he washed the private parts, and then rubbed his hands on the ground or wall two or three times to eliminate any impurities which might have remained because of washing the private parts.


  1. It is necessary to have the intention of starting the Ghusl from the point of washing the private parts, so as to eliminate the need to wash them again [when washing the rest of the body].


  1. The previous hadeeth mentioned that he performed the ablution that is done for Salaat, and from this, it could be understood that he included in this ablution the washing of the feet. However, the present hadeeth clearly indicates that the washing of the feet was done after washing the rest of the body. Perhaps the best manner of reconciliation between the two hadeeths is to say: He did in fact perform a complete ablution – as mentioned in the previous hadeeth, including the washing of the feet. However, after washing the rest of the body he moved to another place and washed his feet a second time since the place where he originally stood performing the Ghusl would have become unclean.


  1. It is mentioned in the present hadeeth of Maimoonah (R.A) that she offered him a piece of cloth to dry off with, but that he did not accept it. Instead, he dried himself with his hands.


  1. That it is not obligatory to rub the parts of the body in Ghusl. Rather it is Sunnah to do so, just as in ablution. [This is the opinion of most of the scholars, except Imaam Maalik].


  1. That there is no need to repeat the washing of the parts of the body already washed in the ablution when washing the whole body during the performance of Ghusl. An-Nawawee says that the correct opinion is that one washing suffices for both the minor and major purification.


  1. That the washing of the other parts of the body [after ablution] is one time. Some of the scholars said that it is three times, based on Qiyas (Analogy) with ablution. [Basic Rule] However, it is not proper to use Qiyaas while there is clear textual proof in any matter. This opinion (washing one time) is the choice of Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, Shaykh Abdur-Rahman as-Sa‟ dee and one of the reports in the Madhhab of Imaam Ahmad.


Sheikh Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) says,

The reader notices some differences between the hadith of Aishah (R.A) and the hadeeth of Maimoonah (R.A) concerning how the prophet (PBUH) made Ghusl. This occurs often in the acts of worship, the Prophet (PBUH) performs them in different ways. So in any way we do it from the way which has been cited, we have attained the Sunnah. The precise Sunnah is to do all the ways, each way sometimes one way and another way sometimes.

Allah Knows Best.


Copied from Sources:

Arousing the Intellects with the Explanation of Umdatul Ahkaam. The Book Of At-Taharaah by Allama Sheikh Salih Ibn Uthaymeen (May Allah have mercy on him). page  85

Tayseer al-Allaam Sharh Umdatul-Ahkaam by Shaykh Abdullah ibn Abdur – Rahmaan Aal Bassaam. Page 65

[i] Saheeh Bukhaari, Volume 1, Book 5, Hadeeth Number 274, p. 197

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