Fajr and Subh O Sadiq (True Dawn)
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
نحمده و نصلى على رسوله الكريم
Law: The time of Fajr is from the break of True dawn (Subh o Saadiq) up to the first ray of the sun. [Text]1
1. Wherever in this book the word text appears by itself as reference, it will refer to the actual text of the general authentic books of Fiqh, namely; Qudoori, Kanz ul Umaal, Majma ‘ul Anhur, Sharah Wiqaaya and Niqaaya etc.]
Note: Subh o Saadiq (True Dawn) is a glow which appears in the eastern horizon from where the sun is to rise today. The brightness of this glow increases until it spreads along the entire horizon (sky), and earth becomes bright (i.e. daylight appears).
Before this, in the centre of the sky a very light whiteness appears, under which the entire horizon remains black (dark). Subh o Saadiq (True Dawn) breaks from under this, spreading out to the southern and northern ends, and then rising upwards. This slight whiteness becomes lost in this. This slight whiteness is known as Subh o Kaazib (False Dawn). Subh o Kaazib does not mark the starting time of Fajr. That which has been mentioned by some, wherein they say that after the whiteness of Subh o Kaazib fades away darkness appears, is actually an incorrect notion. The correct view is that which we have mentioned.
Law: It is preferred in regards to the Namaaz of Fajr, to commence praying it once the glow of Subh o Saadiq breaks and then starts to spread a little. Credence should be given to this.
However, with regards to last time of Esha and halting eating at the time of Sehri, credence should be given to the beginning of Subh o Saadiq (in other words, the moment dawn breaks the time of Esha should be regarded as having elapsed, and the one making Sehri should stop). [Alamgiri vol.1, pg.48]
Note: In this region [This refers to those cities which are on the same longitude and latitude as Bareilly.], the minimum time duration between the break of True Dawn and sunrise is at least 1 hour and 18 minutes, and the maximum duration is 1 hour and 35 minutes. Neither shall the duration be less or more than this. On the 21st of March, it is 1 hour and 18 minutes, and then it increases until on the 22nd June it reaches the full 1 hour 35 minutes. It then starts to decreases until on the 22nd of September it becomes 1 hour 18 minutes, thereafter it increases again until on the 22nd December it becomes 1 hour 24 minutes. Thereafter it decreases again, until on the 21st March it returns to the same 1 hour 18 minutes once again. One, who is not aware of the time of Dawn, should end his Sehri 1 hour 40 minutes before (sunrise) during the summer months, especially during June and July; and during the winter months he should end Sehri 1 hour 30 minutes before (sunrise), especially during December and January. Towards the end of March and September, when the days and nights are equal, one should end Sehri 1 hour 24 minutes before (sunrise). One should give the Azaan of Fajr 8 or 10 minutes after the times which have been mentioned for ending Sehri, so that precaution is taken in regards to both Sehri and Azaan. Some uninformed people call out the Azaan one and three quarter hours to 2 hours before sunrise. Then, they even pray their Sunnat and sometimes even the Fard in this time. Neither is this Azaan valid, nor is the Namaaz valid. Some people think that the seventh portion of the night is when the Fajr time commences. This is certainly not correct. During June and July, when the days are longer and the nights are around 10 hours, then in such days, the time of dawn does come into the seventh portion of night, or even a few minutes before it, but in December and January, when the night is 14 hours long, then in this time, the time of Fajr only comes in the ninth portion of the night or even later. Looking for the indication of the start time of Fajr is difficult, especially when it is hazy and unclear or when it is a moonlit night. One should thus always pay attention to the time of sunrise, noting the time of sunrise on that day and then giving the Azaan the following day in the time, according to the same time frame as explained above for the Azaan and Namaaz of Fajr 1. [Ifadaat-e-Razviyah Vol.2, pg.318]
1. With regards to that which has been mentioned above, it must be noted that, this refers to the times at the particular locality in India. The times and the duration between the True dawn and Sunrise will differ in your city or town. Ask your local Ulama to guide you in regards to the correct times for your locality. However, the basic principle that Qadi Sadrush Shariah has mentioned is that one should always try to end Sehri before the commencement of True Dawn, rather than at the exact time. In other words, if in your locality there is an 1 hour 20 minute duration between True Dawn and Sunrise, you should end your Sehri 1 hour 25 minutes before sunrise, as in this way you are ending at least 5 minutes before the commencement of True Dawn, so there is no risk of you exceeding the time limit, thereby damaging your fast. The principle mentioned in regards to the Azaan is also very clear, and that is, as a precautionary measure one should only call out the Azaan 8 to 10 minutes after the appearance of True Dawn, so that the Azaan is given in the correct time. The point that he made is that some people give Azaan much earlier than the starting time for Fajr and in doing so, neither will such an Azaan which has been called out in the incorrect time, nor such Namaaz which has been performed in the incorrect time, be regarded as valid.
Hadith: Haakim reported from Ibn Ab’bas radia ta’ala anhu that Rasoolullah sallallaahu alaihi wa alihi wa sallam said, ‘There are two Fajrs (dawns)! One is that in which eating is Haraam, and Namaaz is Halaal (i.e. for one who is fasting), and the second is that in which Namaaz (Fajr) is Haraam and eating is Halaal.
Hadith: Tirmizi reports from Raafi’ bin Khadij radia ta’ala anhu that Rasoolullah sallallaahu alaihi wa alihi wa sallam said, ‘Read the Namaaz of Fajr in brightness as there is immense reward (blessings) in this.’
Hadith: It is reported in the narration of Dailmi from Anas radia ta’ala anhu that in doing so you will be pardoned. It is also mentioned in another narration of Dailmi from Anas radia ta’ala anhu that one who performs his Fajr as it becomes bright, Allah will brighten his grave and his heart, and He will accept his Namaaz.
Hadith: It is in Tabrani Awsat from Abu Hurairah radia ta’ala anhu that Rasoolullah sallallaahu alaihi wa alihi wa sallam said, ‘My Ummah will always remain on Fitrat (i.e. on the True Religion) for as long as they perform their Fajr Salaah in brightness.’
The above is taken from Bahare Shariat compiled by Sadrush Shariah Hazrat Allama Maulana Mufti Mohammed Amjad Ali Aazmi Razvi radia ta’ala anhu. Translated into English through the Blessings of Ghaus-ul-Waqt Huzoor Mufti-e-Azam Hind radia ta’ala anhu by a humble servant of Allah Mawlana Muhammad Afthab Cassim al-Qaadiri Razvi Noori damat barakatuhu alia (From personal experience I can confidently say this individual is very humble and lives to propagate Maslak E Aala hadhrat radia ta’ala anhu, we are truly blessed to have such a personality amongst us working relentlessly to translate key texts so we can benefit from it).
Imam Ahmad Raza Khan radia ta’ala anhu states in Fatawa e Razviyya Shareef, volume 10, page 570 that Subh O Sadiq begins when whiteness spreads slightly wider than Subh O Kaazib (which is a thin horizontal white line). As you can see from the above it is unanimous that Subh O Sadiq commences as soon as whiteness of true dawn starts spreading and the best time to pray Fajr is when the whiteness has spread across the horizon end to end. Imam Ahmad Raza Khan radia ta’ala anhu further explains in Fatawa e Razviya Shareef, volume 10, page 572 that Subh O Sadiq (True Dawn) by the consensus of Scholars is the spreading whiteness which goes across the horizon end to end, he further explains this so that it is not mistaken for Subh O Kazib (Fake dawn). There are group of people in the UK who have deliberately misinterpreted this to make a name for themselves and mislead people by setting times later to suit their personal desires.
This position is also confirmed in Al-Hidayah which is considered as an Encyclopedia for those who are beginning Hanafi Scholars:
“The first timing of fajr (Morning Prayer) is the rising of the second dawn [first dawn being the fake dawn (Subh O Kaazib) and second dawn being true (Subh O Sadiq)], which is whiteness that spreads horizontally in the horizon, while its last timing is till the sun has not risen [it confirms this is spreading whiteness which ends at sunrise]. The basis is the tradition of Hazrat Jibril (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) when he led the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace) in prayer. He led the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) in the Morning Prayer on the first day at the rising of the dawn. He led him on the second day when the whiteness had spread considerably and the sun was almost about to rise. Thereafter, Hazrat Jibril (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) said, at the end of the tradition, “What is between these two timings, is the time for you and your ummah.” The false dawn is not to be taken into account and this is the whiteness that rises vertically, but is followed by darkness (According to some it is not followed by darkness, rather it remains till the rise of the dawn), due to the word of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace), “Let not Bilal’s (Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him) adhan (call for prayer) or the oblong dawn deceive you. Dawn is that which is dispersed in the horizon,” that is, widespread.”
It is unanimous agreement of scholars including Imam Ahmed Raza Khan radia ta’ala anhu that Subh O Sadiq (True Dawn) begins when the sun is at 18 degrees below sunrise point. The observatories across the world accept Subh O Sadiq (True dawn) occurs when the Sun is 18 degrees below sunrise. You can establish this for yourself by visiting:
The question brother asked which Dr Bell answered about whiteness being spread across horizon end to end being more significantly visible at 12 degrees establishes that is the preferable time (mustahab) for Fajr to be prayed at. As brothers question to Dr Bell included “I am informed, that whilst the angle of depression of the sun is passing 18 degrees (moving towards 17 degrees), white light will be clear and distinct, spread across the breadth of the eastern horizon. Is this correct?”, as you can see this question is asking what is preferable time for Fajr rather than what is Fajr/Subh O Sadiq beginning time. It also demonstrates that this group of people believe Fajr/Subh O Sadiq commences when whiteness has spread across the horizon; which is contrary to what all the Fuqaha have agreed upon as you can see from the above references.
A question was asked how it can be pitch black at 18 degrees and be dawn at 18 degrees as well, at which many brothers started to present their own views without knowing the theory behind it. If more knowledgeable brothers and sisters can clarify this it be appreciated; in Mubeen e Mubeen by Ala Hazrat Imam Ahmad Raza Khan radia ta’ala anhu I believe it is mentioned the Sun’s orbit of the Earth is slightly lopsided, so it means that at 18 degrees after sunset it will become pitch black and 18 degrees before sunrise True Dawn the ‘white spreading light’ (Subh O Sadiq) commences. Even if we accept science’s explanation rather than our Imam’s, axial tilt would produce the same effect, this is an Elliptic Orbit:
Al-Hamdu li-Allah, sufficient evidence has been provided for sincere brothers and sisters. I would like to thank Mawlana Muhammad Afthab Cassim al-Qaadiri Razvi Noori damat barakatuhu alia for allowing me to use excerpts from his translation and hard work. I would also like to thank Brother Yusuf Rida for his contribution in helping me understand this topic. All the above is compiled from my research and any faults belong to me alone. I have done my utmost best to avoid deriving my own conclusions, the purpose of this was to collate and present the truth which many are attempting to distort.
I would also like to inform everyone, In Sha Allah, there is great work being done on this topic in India as we speak and In Sha Allah, once completed it will be translated and made available for our benefit. My plea on the eve of 10 Shawwal (Yawm E Ala Hazrat radia ta’ala anhu) is please do not leave the rope of Ahle Sunnat Wa Jama’at which in this era is known as Maslak E Ala Hazrat radia ta’ala anhu.
I did offer the people the people arguing contrary to the above to a debate to be organised between the differing scholars, after initially agreeing to speak to the opposing scholars he returned with a negative response from them; the offer is still open. I would like to humbly request this topic to be locked.