Friday 6 Muḥarram 1446 - 12 July 2024
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Uncovering Shoulder During Tawaf: When?

Question

I did tawaf al-ifadah on the day of ‘Eid straight after moving from Muzdalifah, i.e., before stoning Jamarat al-‘Aqabah or shaving my head. Should I have uncovered my right shoulder in this tawaf, given that I was still in ihram? Thank you.

Summary of answer

Uncovering the right shoulder and walking quickly with short steps (raml) are recommended in the tawaf of `Umrah, and in the tawaf of arrival (tawaf al-qudum) for those who are doing ifrad and qiran Hajj.

Answer

Praise be to Allah.

It is only prescribed to uncover the right shoulder and walk quickly with short steps (raml) in the tawaf of `Umrah , and in the tawaf of arrival (tawaf al-qudum) for those who are doing ifrad and qiran Hajj. 

In other tawafs , these actions are not prescribed, so in tawaf al-ifadah there is no raml and no uncovering the shoulder, whether you did tawaf in ihram or not. 

Abu Dawud (2001) narrated from Ibn `Abbas that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did not walk quickly in the seven circuits of tawaf al-ifadah. This was classed as sahih by al-Albani in Sahih Abi Dawud. 

Uncovering the right shoulder and walking quickly with short steps (raml ) go together. When raml is prescribed, uncovering the right shoulder is also prescribed; when raml is not prescribed, uncovering the shoulder is not prescribed either. 

Al-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said in al-Majmu’, 8/43 

“Uncovering the right shoulder goes along with raml. When it is mustahabb [recommended] to walk quickly (raml) it is also prescribed to uncover the right shoulder, and when it is not recommended to walk quickly, it is not prescribed to uncover the shoulder either. When the scholars differed, that had to do with both uncovering the shoulder and walking quickly [i.e., the two actions are not separated]. There is no difference of opinion on this matter. 

He also said: But raml and uncovering the shoulder are separate in one case, which is that uncovering the shoulder is Sunnah in all seven circuits, but raml is only Sunnah in the first three circuits, and one should walk (normally) in the last four.” (Al-Majmu’, 8/20) 

Ibn Qudamah said in al-Mughni (5/221), it is mustahabb to walk quickly and uncover the right shoulder in the Tawaf of ‘Umrah and in the Tawaf of arrival. Then he said: 

“It is not Sunnah to walk quickly or to uncover the right shoulder in tawaf except in the cases we have mentioned, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and his Companions only walked quickly and uncovered their shoulders at those times.” 

It says in Fatawa al-Lajnah al-Daimah (11/225): 

“It is Sunnah to uncover the right shoulder in all circuits of the tawaf of arrival only, and it is prescribed to walk quickly in the first three circuits of the tawaf of arrival for those doing Hajj and those doing ‘Umrah.” 

Shaykh Ibn Baz (may Allah have mercy on him) said: 

“He should walk quickly (raml) in the first three circuits of the first tawaf, which is the tawaf he performs when he first arrives in Makkah, whether he is doing ‘Umrah or tamattu’, or he has entered ihram for Hajj only, or is combining Hajj and ‘Umrah (qiran). And he should walk in the last four circuits, starting each circuit with rapid steps. And it is mustahabb for him to uncover his right shoulder throughout this tawaf, but not in others.” (Fatawa Ibn Baz, 16/60) 

And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A