By Mujlisul Ulama
Wudhu is not a mere worldly act of washing. In addition to its function of physical cleanliness it is an act of ibaadat of considerable virtue. When the Shar’i rules related to Wudhu are observed, the effect is not only physical purity, but spiritual purity as well. Sins are washed away with the water.
The spiritual dimension of Wudhu comes into effect when the Sunnah method is observed. The Sunnah method comprises of the niyyat, the specific way of washing, the recitation of the Masnoon duas, etc. Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) emphasised the observance of a `Beautiful’ Wudhu. As a result of a Beautiful Wudhu the body parts washed during Wudhu will glitter with a wonderful noor in Qiyaamah. By means of this noor, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) will recognize the members of his Ummah among the vast multitudes in the plains of Qiyaamah, It therefore does not behove Muslims to destroy the wonderful and beneficial effects of this simple and easy act of ibaadat. Most Muslims nowadays deprive themselves of the great thawaab and benefit of wudhu because of their western life-style. Wudhu is generally made in bathrooms. But almost all Muslims living in the western world and even the innumerable Muslims banefully affected by westernism in the eastern world make wudhu in the toilet. The bathroom and toilet in western style are located in the same cubicle. Since the toilet is the abode of najaasat (impurity) it is not permissible to recite the Masnoon Duas and the Kalimah, etc. in such a place.
A toilet remains a place of najaasat irrespective of its style and clean appearance and regardless of the detergents and aerosols used to maintain its cleanliness. It is essentially a place of impurity which has an attraction for the shayaateen, hence the dua which we have to recite before entering the toilet is a supplication seeking Allah’s protection from male and female shayaateen which inhabit places of najaasat. Every Muslim has certain Angels of Rahmat which accompany him/her at all times. They separate themselves from a person only when he/she is engaged in sexual relations and when in the toilet. No matter how clean the toilet may be, the Malaaikah do not enter it. The shayaateen visit such places. The Masnoon Duas, Kalimah and Durood which should be recited while engaged in Wudhu may therefore not be recited verbally. Muslims should ponder and understand the great spiritual deprivation they are suffering by having adopted the stupid, filthy and un-Islamic styles of the kuffaar.
Some Ulama argue that in view of the high standard of `cleanliness’ of modern toilets where the impurity does not remain, but is flushed away, it is permissible to recite the Masnoon duas while taking Wudhu. If this is indeed as they are claiming, it will follow that the Malaaikah will join a person into the modern toilet.
Then there no longer remains the need to recite the Masnoon Dua on entering the toilet, for it will be meaningless to seek Allah’s protection against shayaateen because the Malaaikah and the shayaateen do not co-exist in the same place. In terms of the logic of these Ulama it will mean that the Masnoon Dua for entry into the toilet has become redundant in view of the clean’ look of the western toilet. But this is baseless. In fact, the Masnoon toilet dua should be recited even if one answers the call of nature in an open field.
The Fuqaha have ruled that a place made for najaasat is impure and it is not permissible to recite duas or tasbeeh in such a place. In Raddul Muhtaar it is said:
“Verily in a place made for najaasat, qira’t [of Athkaar, Tasbeeh and Tahleel] is Makrooh (i.e. Makrooh Tahrimi).”
It is necessary that Muslims alter the structure of their bathroom-toilet by separating the two so that they may gain the wonderful rewards and benefits of the Ibaadat of Wudhu.