Fasting First Six Days Of Shawwāl

Question

Someone has asked me about the opinion of various Imams, particularly Imam Abu Hanifa, regarding the 6 days of fasting during the month of Shawwaal.Obviously, for me it is a tough question as I have no knowledge of Fiqa as such, so I thought may be I should ask you. Also let me know about your opinion on this.


Answer

As for the hanafi's view on the six days fasts of shawal, they consider them Sunnah (as their own term: http://www.understanding-islam.com/related/text.asp?type=question&qid=1810). By Sunnah they mean supererogatory worship acts.

The Shari'ah only requires us to fast during the month of Ramadan. There is no requirement regarding fasting other than this. However, we can observe as much supererogatory fasts as we can. The fasts of Shawal have not been constituted as the obligatory Sunnah. Whoever observes fasts during the six days of Shawwal earns great reward. The only purpose of these fasts can be attaining taqwah and nearness to God. The Almighty accepts whatever good we do over above the required form of worship rituals. The Holy Prophet (sws) said: Whoever observes fasts of Ramadan and then goes on to fast for six days in Shawwal without break is like the one who continuously fasts his whole life. (Muslim No: 1164)

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