Islamic Etiquette of Using Bathroom

Md. Mokhter Ahmad Assistant Professor IIUC-Dhaka Campus Email: mokhter_ahmad@yahoo.com

Introduction: In the first place, we would like to note that Islam has stipulated noble principles and teachings that will guide man in every aspect of life. Nothing is left untouched by this great religion revealed to cater for the welfare of mankind. This fact is further stressed in the following statement of a Prophet’s Companion named Salmān Al-Fārsī when he was asked by a non-Muslim: “Your Prophet has taught you everything, even how to defecate!” Salmān said, “Yes, he forbade us to face the qiblah when urinating or defecating…” (Sunan Abī Dāūd: No. 7)

‫قيل له لقد علمكم نبيكم كل شيء حتى الخراءة قال أجل لقسسد نهانسسا صسسلى الس عليسسه وسسسلم أن نسسستقبل‬ ‫القبلة بغائط أو بول وأن ل نستنجي باليمين وأن ل يستنجي أحدنا بأقل من ثلثة أحجار أو نسسستنجي‬ (‫برجيع أو عظم )سنن أبي داود‬
Answering the call of nature is facilitation from Allah for the sake of relieving ourselves of pains, illness and injuries. This is why we are to express our thankfulness to Allah for this facility. The Prophet used to say while coming out of toilet:

‫: الحمد ل الذي أذاقني لذته، وأبقى في قوته، ودفع عني أذاه رواه الطبراني وابن السني عن ابسسن‬ ّ ‫عمر‬
'All praises are due to Allah Who let me taste His bounty, kept in me His strength, and removed from me pain.'

And in recognition to Allah's mercy we are to seek His forgiveness after coming out of bathroom. 'Āishah (r) reported from her father who used to say:

...‫: استحيوا من ال فإني لدخل فأغطي رأسي استحياء من ربي عز وجل‬
We will be recognizing the favor of Allah upon us if we follow the following etiquettes while using bathroom. These are regarded to be the 'Bathroom Etiquettes': 'Bathroom Etiquettes'
1) To enter the bathroom with the left leg first, not with the right leg first and to

recite the supplication (du'ā) that is reported in the hadīth: ‫إذا دخلل الخلء قلال: اللهلم إنلي أعلوذ بلك ملن‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ عن أنس قال: كان رسول اللله‬ ‫ل‬ .‫الخبث والخبائث متفق عليه‬

Anas (r) reported that the Prophet would recite while entering toilet: 'O Allah, I seek refuge with You from male and female devils'. There is another supplication we are to recite while coming out of the toilet:

:‫غفرانك، الحمد لله الذي أذهب عني الذى وعافاني . عن عائشة ا قللالت‬ ‫كان رسول الله إذا خرج من الغلائط قلال: غفرانلك رواه الخمسلة. وعلن‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫أنس قال: كان رسول الله إذا خرج من الخلء ق لال: الحم لد لل له ال لذي‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ .‫أذهب عني الذى وعافاني رواه ابن ماجه‬
2) To tie up the clothes before entering bathroom so that those do not be polluted

with dirt or impurity:

3) Not to face the qiblah when urinating or defecating. This is out of respect for the

qiblah and for the symbols and rituals of Allah. The Messenger of Allah (saas) said, “When any one of you sits down to answer the call of nature, he should not face the qiblah or turn his back towards it.” (Muslim)

‫عن أب لي أي لوب النص لاري ع لن الن لبي ق لال: إذا أت لى أح لدكم الغ لائط فل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ّ .‫يستقبل القبلة ول يولها ظهره، شرقوا أو غربوا متفق عليه‬ ّ ّ
4) One should carry anything with him which contains the name of Allah or verse of

the Qur'an. The Prophet (saas) used to put off his ring (used for seal) where the phase "Muhammad the Messenger of Allah" was written while entering toilet.' (Abī Dāūd) 5) To ensure that the door of the toilet is closed.
6) A person should not uncover his `awrah (private parts) before reaching the toilet,

closing the door and squatting close to the ground, because this is more concealing. Ibn Abbās (r) reported: “When the Prophet (saas) wanted to answer the call of nature, he would not lift his garment until he had squatted close to the ground.” (Abī Dāūd). It is worth noting that the habit of urinating in a standing position in front of other people in public toilets (using urinals) is something which goes against good manners, modesty and decency, and is repulsive to sound common sense and wisdom. How can anybody uncover in front of other people the `awrah that Allah has concealed and commanded him to cover it? It is wrong in principle to build restrooms of this shameful type where the users can see one another, thus making them worse than some kinds of animals whose habit is to conceal themselves from one another when urinating or defecating. If a person is out in an open space and cannot find anything to conceal him when he needs to answer the call of nature, he should move far away from the other people around him, because Al-Mughīrah ibn Shu`bah (r) said, “I was with the Prophet (saas) on a journey, when he felt the need to answer the call of nature, so he went far away.” (Al-Tirmidhī) `Abdullah ibn Abī Qurād (r) said, “I went out with the Messenger of Allah (saas) to an open space, and when he needed to answer the call of nature, he moved away.” (Al-Nasā’ī) To close the eyes and not to look at the private parts, because Allah is the most worthy to be shamed of. As 'Āishah (r) reported from her father who used to say:

...‫: استحيوا من ال فإني لدخل فأغطي رأسي استحياء من ربي عز وجل‬
'Feel ashamed of Allah. For indeed I do enter the toilet and cover my head due to the shyness of my Lord.'
7) Talking, eating, greeting, responding to the greeting, or remembering Allah while

in the state of urinating or defecating is totally repugnant to Islamic etiquette. Jābir Ibn `Abdullah reported that a man passed by the Prophet (saas) while he was urinating and greeted him. The Messenger of Allah (saas) said to him, “If you see me in this state, do not greet me, because if you do, I will not respond.” (Ibn Majah). Ibn 'Umar also narrates the same story:

.‫وهو يبول فسلم عليه فلم يرد عليه رواه مسلم‬ ّ
Jābir (r) reports that it causes Allah's wrath and anger:

‫: مر رجل بالنبي‬ ّ

‫عن جابر قال: قال رسول اللله : إذا تغلوط اللرجلن فليتلوار كلل واحلد‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ّ ‫منهما عن صاحبه ول يتحدثا فإن الله يمقت على ذلك رواه أحمد‬
8) The Sunnah is to answer the call of nature sitting, making oneself close to the ground, because this is more concealing and makes it less likely that spray from one's urine will come back on one’s body or clothes, making them dirty.

‫ا قالت: من حدثكم أن رسول الله بال قائما فل تصلدقوه رواه‬ ّ ّ

‫عن عائشة‬ ‫الترمذي‬

9) He should not touch his penis with his right hand when urinating because the

Prophet (saas) said, “When any one of you urinates, he should not hold his penis in his right hand or clean it with his right hand; and (when drinking), he should not breathe into the vessel.” (Al-Bukhari)

‫عن أبي قتادة قال: قال رسول الله :" ل يمسن أحدكم ذكره بيمينه وهو‬ ّ ّ ‫يبول، ول يتمسح من الخلء بيمينه متفق عليه‬ ّ
10) He should not remove najāsah (impurity) with his right hand. The left hand should

be used for this purpose, because of the hadīth quoted above and because the Prophet (saas) said, “When any one of you wipes himself, he should not use his right hand.” (Al-Bukhari) He should be careful to remove all impurity after answering the call of nature because the Prophet (saas) warned against being careless in cleaning oneself after urinating. “Most of the punishment of the grave will be because of urine.” (Ibn Majah)

‫: استنزهوا من البول فللإن عامللة‬

‫وعن أبي هريرة قال: قال رسول الله‬ .‫عذاب القبر منه رواه الدارقطني‬

Ibn `Abbas (r) reported that the Messenger of Allah (saas) passed by two graves and said, “They are being punished, but they are not being punished for any major sin. One of them used not to protect himself (i.e., keep himself clean from) his urine, and the other used to walk about spreading malicious gossip.” (Al-Bukhari)

‫مر صلى الله عليه وسلم على قبرين فقال: )إنهم لا ليع لذبان، وم لا يع لذبان ف لي‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ّ .‫كبير: أما أحدهما فكان ل يستتر من بوله، وأما الخر فكللان يمش لي بالنميم لة‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ .[‫] متفق عليه‬
11) Any impurity should be washed or wiped three times or an odd number of times

greater than three, according to whatever is needed to cleanse it, because `Ā’ishah (r) reported that the Prophet (saas) used to wash his posterior three times. Ibn `Umar (r) said, “We did this too and found it to be healing and cleansing.” (Ibn Majah) Abu Hurayrah (r) reported that the Prophet (saas) said, “When any one of you cleans himself (with stones or similar material) let him use an odd number.” (Ahmad) It is so because it ensures one's purification for sure. This is very praiseworthy. Allah praised this type of people who are extra careful for cleanliness:

.‫قال تعالى: إ ِن الل ّه ي ُحب الت ّوابين وَي ُحب ال ْمت َط َهّرين )222( البقرة‬ ّ ِ ّ ِ َ ّ ُ َ ِ َ ِ ّ :‫عن أبي هريرة -رضي الله عنه- قال: قال رسول الله صلى الله علي له وس للم‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ {‫)نزلت في أهل قُباء: }فيه رجال يحبون أن يتطهروا والله يحللب المطهريللن‬ َ ْ ‫]التوبة:801[. كانوا يستنجون بالماء، فنزلت فيهم الية ]أبو داود والترمذي‬
Abū Hurairah (r) narrated that this verse was revealed for the people of Quba who used to cleanse themselves with water.

 

12) A person should not urinate by the roadside or in places where people seek shade

because this is offensive to them. Abū Hurayrah reported that the Prophet (saas) said, “Fear the two things that bring curses.” They asked, “What are the two things that bring curses, Messenger of Allah?” He said: “When a person relieves himself in the road where people walk or in the place where they seek shade.” (Reported by Abu Dawud)

‫قال الرسول صلى الله عليه وسللم: )اتقلوا الل ّعّلانين(. قلالوا: وملا اللعانلان يلا‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫رسول الله؟ قال: )اللذي يتخل ّلى )يقضلي حلاجته( فلي طريلق النلاس أو فلي‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ .[‫ظلهم ]مسلم‬
13) A person should not urinate into stagnant water, because Jābir (r) reported that the

Messenger of Allah (saas) forbade anyone to urinate into stagnant water (Muslim/Nasā'ī), and because this makes the water impure and harms those who use it. 14) To come out of toilet as soon as possible after finishing one's urge. One is also recommended to wash his hands with water and soap after cleansing himself from impurity. 15) One is recommended to make ablution after using toilet. It was the custom of Hazrat Bilal (r):

‫كان بلل بن رباح -رضي الله عنه- يتوضأ بعد أن يقضي ح لاجته ويص للي، فق لال‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫له النبي صلى اللله عليله وسللم: )يلا بلل، حلدثني بلأرجى عملل عملتلَله فلي‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫السلم، فإني سمعت د َف نعليك بين ي لدي فلي الجن لة. ق لال بلل: ملا عمللت‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ّ ‫عمل أرجى عندي من أني لم أتطه لر طه لورا فلي س لاعة ملن لي لل أو نهلار إل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل‬ ‫ل ً ل‬ ‫ل‬ .[‫صليت بذلك الطهور ما ك ُت ِب لي أن أصلي. ]متفق عليه‬ َ ُ
The Prophet asked Bilal: O Bilal! Tell me of the most beloved activities you do in Islam, because I heard the sound of your shoes in Jannah. He said: I have done nothing extra except that whenever I purify myself anytime in day or night I perform salat with that purify as far I have been destined to..".

Conclusion:
Many other etiquette are there for using bathroom. If we perform those we will hopefully be greatly rewarded by Allah. May Allah accepts all our good deeds.

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