Rulings for Wiping over the Shoes and Socks
by Imaam Muhammad Nasser ud-Deen al-Albaanee
Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem.
From his short treatise “Tamaam An-Nash fee Ahkaam Al-Mash” [The Complete Guidance regarding the Rules of Wiping (over footwear)]. This treatise appears after the Shaykh’s checking to Imaam Jamaal-ud-Deen Al-Qaasimee’s book entitled Al-Mas-h ‘alaa Al-Jawrabayn (Wiping over the Socks).
1. Wiping over the shoes
As for wiping over the shoes (na’alayn) [NOTE: The word used in this treatise for shoes is na’alayn, which can mean sandals or shoes that do not pass the ankle. At the time of Allaah’s Messenger (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam), the people used to wear these sandals, which were considered shoes.] when performing ablution, then it has become popular amongst the contemporary scholars to say that it is not permissible to wipe over them. And we do not know of any evidence to support that claim, other than what has been stated by Al-Baihaqee (raheemahullaah) in his Sunan (1/288):
“The foundation is the obligation for washing the feet, unless there is an established aspect of the Sunnah that makes it more specific, or there is a consensus (ijmaa’) in which there is no differing. And wiping over the shoes or the socks is not included in any of the two, and Allaah knows best.”
This is what he has stated. And it is well known, unfortunately, that it indicates an unawareness of the previously mentioned ahaadeeth in this treatise [NOTE: The treatise he is referring to is al-Mas-h ‘Alaa al-Jawrabain (Wiping over the Socks) by the great scholar of Shaam Jamaal-ud-Deen al-Qaasimee (rahimahullaah). This treatise of Shaykh al-Albaanee comes directly after his checking of Al-Qaasimee’s book. Imaam al-Albaanee included this last section to the book in order to clarify common misunderstandings present today and to compliment the book. Thus, there will be some references made to this book, such as “as has been stated previously”. This means previously in the book Al-Mas-h ‘Alaa Al-Jawrabain.] regarding the establishment of wiping over the socks and the shoes. And the chains of narration regarding some of them are authentic, as has been clarified previously. This is why at-Turkmanee al-Hanafee (raheemahullaah) commented on these words, saying:
“This is incorrect, for it has preceded that at-Tirmidthee has authenticated the (hadeeth of) wiping over the socks and the shoes and declared it hasan from the hadeeth of Muzail on al-Mugheerah. He also declared the hadeeth of ad-Dahhaak on Aboo Moosaa (radhiyallaahu anhu) to be hasan. Also, Ibn Hibbaan has verified wiping over the shoes by authenticating the hadeeth of Aws (radhiyallaahu anhu). Similarly, Ibn Khuzaimah [See Saheeh Ibn Khuzaimah (pg. 100).] has authenticated the hadeeth of Ibn Umar on wiping over the shoes. And what al-Baihaqee mentioned from the hadeeth of Zaid Ibn al-Hibaab on ath-Thawree (meaning with the chain of narration going to Ibn Umar and it was stated previously) regarding wiping over the shoes, is a good hadeeth. Ibn al-Qataan has also authenticated it on Ibn Umar.” [Al-Jauhar-un-Naqee (1/288)]
I say that once you have come to know this, it is not permissible to even hesitate in accepting this allowance – especially after the hadeeth concerning it have been established. This is since, as the author (al-Qaasimee) has stated in what has been mentioned previously:
“The hadeeth concerning it are authentic, thus there is no recourse other than to hear and obey.”
This is especially the case after knowing that the Sahaabah acted in accordance with it. And foremost amongst them, was the rightly guided Khaleefah, ‘Alee Ibn Abee Taalib (radhiyallaahu anhu). Furthermore, it is the view that was held by some of the Imaams from the pious predecessors (Salafus-Saalih), may Allaah be pleased with all of them.
Thus, Ibn Hazm (raheemahullaah) said in al-Muhallaa (2/103):
“Issue: So if the footwear (khuff) are cut so that they fall beneath the ankles, then wiping over them is permissible. This is the opinion of al-Awzaa’ee and it has been reported on him that he said: ‘The muhrim may wipe over his shoes that come beneath the ankles…’ Others have stated: ‘He may not wipe over them unless they go over the ankles.'”
2. Wiping over khuffs or socks that have holes in them
As for wiping over khuffs (leather socks) or socks that are torn with holes, then the scholars have differed in this issue with many opinions. The majority of them forbid it based on a long differing amongst them, which you can see in the detailed discussions found in the books of Fiqh and al-Muhallaa. Other scholars held the opinion that it was permissible, and this is the opinion that we favor. Our argument for this is that: the source principle is the (absolute) allowance for wiping. So whoever forbids it, or places a condition on it – such as that they must be void of any holes – or he places limits to it, then he is refuted by the statement of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam):
“Every condition that is not found in the Book of Allaah, then it is false.” [al-Bukhaaree and Muslim]
It has also been authentically reported that Sufyaan ath-Thawree (raheemahullaah) said: “Wipe over them (the socks) so long as they are attached to your feet. Were the socks of the Muhaajireen and the Ansaar anything but torn (with holes), ripped and tattered?” [Reported by ‘Abd-ur-Razzaaq in Al-Musannaf (no. 753) and from that path of narration, by Al-Baihaqee (1/283)]
Ibn Hazm (raheemahullaah) said:
“So if there is found in the khuffs, or whatever is worn on the feet, any holes that are small or large, long or wide, such that some part of the foot is visible, whether a little or a lot, or both, then all of that is the same. And wiping over them is permissible, so long as any part of it continues to attach itself to the feet. This is the opinion of Sufyaan Ath-Thawree, Daawood, Aboo Thawr, Ishaaq Ibn Raahawaih and Yazeed Ibn Haaroon.” [Al-Muhallaa (2/100)]
Then he (raheemahullaah) goes on to relate the statements of the scholars that forbid it, according to what they contain from differing and contradiction. And then he goes on to refute them and explain that it is an opinion that has no evidence to support it except opinion. Then he closed that with his statement:
“However the truth in this matter is what is reported in the Sunnah, which explains the Qur’aan, in that the ruling for the two feet, which do not have any garment over them to wipe over, is that they must be washed. And the ruling for the two, if there is a garment over them, is that they can be wiped over. This is what is reported in the Sunnah ‘and your Lord is not forgetful.’ [Surah Maryam: 64] The Messenger (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam) knew, when he commanded for the wiping over the khuffs or whatever is worn on the feet – and he wiped over the socks – that there was large and small holes, as well as no holes, in the shoes, socks and whatever else is worn on the feet. And he (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam) also knew that there existed the footwear that was red, black or white as well as the new and the old. But he (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam) did not specify some of it over another. And if the ruling for that in the Religion varied, then Allaah would not have forgotten to send down revelation concerning it, nor would the Messenger of Allaah (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam) have neglected explaining it, far is he removed from that. Thus, it is correct that the ruling for this wiping applies to all conditions.” [Al-Muhallaa (2/100)]
Also, Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah (raheemahullaah) said in his Ikhtiyaaraa (pg. 13):
“It is permissible to wipe over the (foot) garments on one of its two sides – Ibn Tameem and others related this. It is also permissible to wipe over the khuff that has holes in it, so long as it continues to hold that name (khuff) and one is able to walk in it. This is the older of the two opinions ash-Shaafi’ee held on it, and it is that which Abul-Barakaat and other scholars have preferred.”
I say: Ar-Raafi’ee attributed this view in Sharh Al-Wajeez (2/370) to the majority of the scholars and uses as a support for it, his argument that the opinion that forbids wiping over them, narrows the door of this allowance, so one must wipe. And he was correct, may Allaah have mercy on him.
3. Does taking off the footwear that is wiped over, nullify the ablution?
The scholars have also differed concerning the one who takes off the khuff and its types after having performed ablution and wiped over them. Their differing can be divided into three opinions.
The First: His ablution is valid and he is not required to do anything.
The Second: He must wash his two feet only.
The Third: He must redo his ablution
Each of these opinions were held by groups of scholars among the predecessors (Salaf). ‘Abd-ur-Razzaaq (raheemahullaah) has transmitted their narrations regarding these opinions in his Al-Musannaf (1/210/809-813), as well as Ibn Abee Shaybah (1/187-188) and al-Baihaqee (1/289-290).
There is no doubt that the first opinion is what is most correct, for it is in correspondence with the essence of wiping, in that it is an allowance and a facilitation from Allaah. Thus any opinion, other than the first, would deny this facilitation, as has been stated by Ar-Raafi’ee in the previous Issue (#2).
Furthermore, the other two opinions are outweighed by two arguments, based on the following two evidences:
First: It complies with the action of the rightly guided Khaleefah ‘Alee Ibn Abee Taalib (radhiyallaahu anhu), for we have presented previously with an authentic chain of narration, that he t once broke his ablution, then performed a new one and wiped over his shoes. Then he took them off and prayed (without them).
Second: It is in compliance with the correct analogy, for indeed if one were to wipe over his head and then shave his hair off, he would not be obligated to wipe over his head again, since he would already have ablution. This is the opinion that Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah (raheemahullaah) favored, as he states in his Ikhtiyaaraat (page 15):
“The ablution of the one who has wiped over his khuffs and turban is not canceled when he removes either of these two garments. Nor is it canceled by the cessation of its time limit (for wiping). And he is not obligated to wipe over his head nor is he required to wash his feet (because of removing the head or foot garment). This is the view of Al-Hasan Al-Basree. This (view) takes the similitude of the hair that is wiped, according to the correct opinion of the Hanbalee madh-hab and the opinion of the majority of the scholars.”
This was also the view of Ibn Hazm (raheemahullaah), so refer to his words in which he argues against those that oppose it, for indeed it is valuable. [See al-Muhallaa (2/105-109)]
As for what has been reported by Ibn Abee Shaiba (1/187) and Al-Baihaqee (1/289) on the authority of a man among the Prophet’s (sal-Allaahu alayhe wa sallaam) companions, who when asked about a person that wiped over his khuffs, then took them off, said: “He should wash his feet.” Then in the chain of narration of this hadeeth is Yazeed Ibn ‘Abd-ir-Rahmaan ad-Daalaanee. al-Haafidh Ibn Hajr (raheemahullaah) said of him: “He is truthful, however he made too many mistakes in his narration. And he used to commit tadlees. al-Baihaqee (raheemahullaah) reported a similar narration from Abu Bakrah (radhiyallaahu anhu). The narrators of this hadeeth are all reliable except for ‘Alee Ibn Muhammad Al-Qurshee, for I do not know of him.”
Then he (raheemahullaah) reported from al-Mugheerah Ibn Shu’aba that he said: “Wiping over the footwear is three days for the traveler and one day for the resident, so long as he doesn’t remove them.”
Then he (raheemahullaah) said. “‘Umar Ibn Rudaih is alone in reporting this and he is not a strong reporter.”
I say that this addition of “so long as he doesn’t remove them” is rejected due to the loneliness of this weak narrator in reporting it and due to the lack of there being any supporting evidence for it.