39947: She relieved herself in a cup in the Haram


A woman went to the Haram and entered the area where Zamzam is. She should not control the urge to urinate, so she urinated in a cup and threw it into the water that was flowing from the taps. What is the ruling on that?.

Praise be to Allaah.  

Firstly: 

Relieving oneself in the mosque is haraam, so how about if that is in al-Masjid al-Haraam? 

It was narrated that Anas ibn Maalik said: Whilst we were in the mosque with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), a Bedouin came and started to urinate in the mosque. The companions of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “Stop, stop!” The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “Do not interrupt him; leave him.” So they left him alone until he had finished urinating, then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) called him and said to him: “These mosques are not the place for urinating or for anything filthy, rather they are for the remembrance of Allaah, prayer and reading Qur’aan.” Then he told a man to bring a bucket of water and he threw it over (the urine). 

Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 217; Muslim 285. 

The Sahaabah (may Allaah be pleased with them) felt a sense of pride and protective jealousy (gheerah), so they shouted at that Bedouin and wanted to stop him and denounce him so that he would not carry on urinating. It may be understood from this that it is not permissible to approve of an evil action, rather we must hasten to denounce the one who is doing something wrong, but in this incident denunciation may have led to something even more harmful, and it was for that reason that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) told them not to do it, and he rebuked them for shouting at the Bedouin. 

This is the first issue that should be noted with regard to this question, which is that it is haraam to relieve oneself in the mosque. That applies if a person is going to relieve himself on the floor of the mosque, but if it is going to be in a vessel then some scholars were of the view that it is permissible if that is necessary or if it is too difficult to go out of the mosque because one is sick etc. That appears to be the case in the situation mentioned here. 

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said in al-Fataawa al-Kubra

(With regard to) urinating in a vessel in the mosque, some of them forbade that and some allowed it if that is necessary. 

And he said elsewhere that it may be permissible if there is a need for that. He said in al-Fataawa al-Misriyyah

It is more likely that it is permissible when necessary. 

Secondly: 

If a person needs to relieve himself then he should conceal himself so that no one will see him and look at his private parts. 

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) passed by two graves and said: “They are being punished but they are not being punished for anything that was difficult to avoid, but it is a major sin. One of them used not to take care to avoid getting urine on his clothes, and the other used to walk around spreading malicious gossip (nameemah).” Then he took a green date palm leaf, cut it in two and placed one on each grave. They said, “O Messenger of Allaah, why did you do that?” He said, “So that their punishment might be reduced until this dries out.” 

Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 213 and 5708 – this version was narrated by him; and by Muslim, 292. 

This is the second issue that should be noted with regard to this question, which is that it is essential to conceal one’s ‘awrah when relieving oneself and indeed in all situations. If the sister was keen to do this and did do it, then there is no sin on her, in sha Allaah. 

Thirdly: 

The third issue that should be noted with regard to this question is the disposal of this urine. If she had kept it in a safe container until she took it outside the Haram, or in a place where it could not come into contact with pure (taahir) things, that would have been better. But with what she did – which was to throw it into the place where the water of Zamzam is disposed of – there is the fear that it may have contaminated some of the people who were there at the taps. If the urine was disposed of in such a way that the people would not have been contaminated by it, then there is nothing wrong with this action, but the first action suggested above is more correct, as we have mentioned. 

In conclusion, what this woman did is permissible because she needed to do that, but we should take into consideration the fact that she should conceal herself when relieving herself so that her ‘awrah will not become visible and she will not annoy the people or contaminate them with this najaasah (impurity). 

And Allaah knows best.

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