Monday, February 9, 2009

Istanja---what it is and how to make it

بِسْمِ اللّهِ الرَّحْمـَنِ الرَّحِيم ,
Before you learn how to make wudu you should know to preform Istanja, and how to. So what is Istanja?

Istanja is an Islamic term for getting rid of uncleanliness. It is a method of cleaning one's self with water after using the toilet.

If you have grown up using toilet paper, think of how we clean a baby when changing its diaper. Do we merely use toilet paper on a baby? No, we usually use a wet wipe, because it is cleaner to have something "wet". Toilet paper on its own is only a wiping device, not a sanitary one whatsoever, so unfortunately, what adults intrinsically think of when caring for infants, is forgotten when caring for themselves or training their children.

In Islam, even cleaner than a wet wipe, we use a spray of water to clean ourselves after urination or after using a wiping device in the case of defacation. If you have not performed Istanja after using the toilet before making wudu, your wudu is not valid, and so your salat will be invalid. It is also a sin and there is punishment from Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala for neglecting it as is related in this sahih hadith (may Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala protect us from such things, ameen) :

Ibn Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) narrates: " The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) once passed by two graves and said: "They (in the grave) are being punished not for a great thing to avoid" Then he added: "Yes, (they are being punished for a great sin), for one of them used to go about with calumnies while the other never saved himself from the splashes of urine"

But who would want to keep on using toilet paper now that they have learnt the benefit of performing istanja with water?!!!

After urinating dry the urine with a clean piece of mud (for those in a country without toilet paper) or toilet paper and then wash with water.

HOW TO DO ISTANJA WITH #2 (you know):
Clean the private part with three or five clean mud pieces (hey, that's how they did it historically) or toilet paper and then wash with water.

After using the toilet for number 1 or 2.

The left hand should be used for all acts of wiping in rinsing during istanja. It is a sin to use the right (which has to do with eating and taking meals, which is a subject that will be broached at a later date). In Islam know, that for every good thing the right hand is used, and everything else the left if used.

By what things Istanja should be done? By toilet paper, clean mud pieces or stones, and finished ALWAYS with water. By what things should it not be done? With bones, or food, coal, or writing paper (i.e useful things should not be ruined for the sake of a wiping device).

Helpful notes for people not living in a Islamic country with Islamic toilets with spray devices like the one pictured below or bidets: carry a water bottle (that you won't use for drinking or let anyone else drink!!!!!!) or a small container of water with you in your purse when you go out prep for public washrooms and the like, and at home, keep a watering can (some of my Muslim sisters I have visited use these) or, as I prefer, a water spray bottle (the kind you use for your hair) from the dollar store and keep it beside the toilet. If you can, get a shower spray installed for yourself.

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Blogger Pixie said...

he he he I love the pink toilet paper pic.

February 9, 2009 at 3:07 PM  
Blogger Lazeena Umm Yusuf said...

Excellent post!!!!! This is totally an overlooked matter in Islam. My Catholic Mother in law almost had a heart attack when we lived together and my husband attached a bidet to the toilet lol. I dont understand how she thought it was disgusting... people who just wipe with paper are disgusting!

Before we eat we just dont wipe our hands with dry paper, we wash it. We just dont clean our teeth by wiping it with a tissue, we brush it with toothpaste and water. I dont even wanna think about 'non-istinjites' during their time of the month *faint*

And for those who dont know where to get a bidet/spray hose or how to hook one up or live with non Muslim family members, a simple jug/small watering can to pour the water with will do just fine. I keep mine out for guests but if you're the only one using it you can also just stash it in the cabinet.

February 10, 2009 at 11:53 PM  
Blogger *~Ange~* said...

so many people think its sunnah to use water and water only.. they dont realise or know that the prophet used stones/mud etc before using the water for #2.

thanks for posting this

February 11, 2009 at 1:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

assalamualaikum pixie
i reli like this post, cuz every1 needs to no about this, but its not sumthin u'd like talk about naturally!

err, i've always wanted to no this nd if theres any converts as i no ther r cud sum1 answer plz (its too emabarrasin askin my non-muslim m8s lol) what on earth did u use afer goin toilet when u wernt muslim lol???
like how can any1 survive with jus toilet pper? especialy in 'the time of the month' omw , what did u use???????

anyways thanks, another amazin post as usual!

February 15, 2009 at 8:47 AM  
Blogger Pixie said...

hal786: just toilet paper. Even during the time of the month. I didn't know!!!!!! Actually, the blood itself isn't as bad thinkg about the germs from the other stuff. Blood doesn't hurt the skin itself.

February 16, 2009 at 12:02 AM  

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