Nifass (Post Natal Bleeding) and Its Rulings – Shaykh ibn Uthaymeen | Dr Saleh as-Saleh

Chapter Six
Nifass And Its Rulings

Nifass: is the bleeding due to delivery by a pregnant woman. It may occur with delivery, after delivery (post-natal) or before delivery (by two or three days coupled to contractions).

Shayekh Al-Islam Ibn Taymeeyah said: “The blood seen when the woman starts her contractions is Nifass and it is not limited to two or three days. These contractions are followed by delivery or otherwise the released blood is not Nifass”.

The scholars differed as to whether there is a limit on its duration. Shayekul Islam Ibn Taymeeyah said: “Nifass has no limit on the duration of its shorter or longer periods. Assuming that a woman sees a flowing of blood for more than forty, sixty, or seventy days and then the blood flow stops. This kind of bleeding is Nifass. Suppose, however, that the bleeding continues, then a limit of forty days is set as Nifass because this period is the common period encountered by most women”.

This author said: “based upon the above, if the bleeding of a woman continues beyond forty days and if there are signs that indicate that it will come to a stop (based upon previous pregnancies or some other signs), then she should wait until the blood flow stops. If none of these signs are encountered by a woman, then she cleans herself (bath) upon the completion of forty days considering it the reference period for most women. On the other hand, if upon the completion of her forty days she gets her normal menses then she should wait until it ends. If the blood continues after her regular menses ends, then she is a Mustahadah and should apply the rules of Istihadah”.

If the Nifass bleeding stops before the forty day-reference period and she becomes clean, then she should take a bath, pray, fast and she may engage in sexual intercourse with her husband. The stopping of the flow of blood for less than a day does not qualify her to be clean (as mentioned in Al-Mughnee).

Nifass is not confirmed unless the woman delivers a human being with clear features. If a small body is delivered but clearly does not show the developed features of a human being, then the associated bleeding is not Nifass and it is considered as Irq blood (blood from a blood vessel). The least period for which a human form can develop is eighty days starting from the day of conception and most often it is ninety days. Al-Mujid Ibn Taymeeyah [57] said: “If she sees blood coupled to contractions prior to the 80/90-days she should not give it any consideration (i.e., she continues to pray and fast) but if she sees blood after this period she should then refrain from praying and fasting. If, however, she delivers her load and the new born has developed human features, then her bleeding (prior the 80/90 days) should be considered as Nifass and she should correct for her missed prayers and fasting. If on the other hand the newborn does not show developed human features then her bleeding should still not to be considered as Nifass and does not have to make up for her prayers and fasting.”

The Laws of Nifass

The laws of Nifass are the same as the laws governing menses, except in the following cases:

(1) The Idda is not related to Nifass, but rather to the rules of divorce. For example: if Talaq (divorce) was declared prior to delivery, then the Idda ends upon delivery and is not related to the Nifass period. If Talaq was declared after delivery, she waits for the return of her menses and accordingly calculates her Idda as explained earlier.

(2) The period of Eelaa’. The Eelaa’ is when the husband makes an oath to indefinitely (or for more than four months) not to have sexual intercourse with his wife. If his wife demands sexual intercourse, a period of four months starting from the day he took his oath, will be set. If this period is completed he will be ordered (by a Muslim Judge) either to perform sexual intercourse with his wife or request of separation by his wife will be fulfilled. Nifass will not be counted against the Eelaa’ period. An increment equal to the period needed for the wife’s Tahara from Nifass will be added towards the Eelaa’ period. This is in contrast with menses (Haid), whereby its period is counted against the Eelaa’ period.

(3) Puberty: It is clear that Nifass is related to pregnancy. A woman cannot get pregnant before she has her own sexual secretions. Haid (and not Nifass) indicates that puberty had been reached.

(4) What if the flow of Nifass blood stops before the forty days period and then resumes on the fortyth day? In contrast with Haid blood [58], the state of this resumption is considered to be “doubtful” according to famous sayings by the Hanabilah scholars. She, according to them, must fast and pray on time . All that which is forbidden on the Haa’id is forbidden on her, except obligatory acts. She must compensate all that which the Haa’id must compensate for. This author, however, is with the opinion that: “If the blood resumes within a period that may be a Nifass period, then her blood is Nifass blood. If not, then it is a Haid blood unless it continues to flow and it will then be an Istihadah blood. This opinion is close to that reported in Al-Mughnee (V.1, P. 349) in which it is mentioned that Imam Malik have said: “If she sees blood two or three days after its flow had stopped, then it is Nifass blood or otherwise it is a Haid blood.” This is also the choice of Shayekul Islam Ibn Taymeeyah.

Realistically, there can be no “doubt” about blood. It is, however, a relative matter in which peoples’ opinions may vary depending upon their knowledge and understanding. The Book of Allah and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) are sources of clarification for everything. Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) did not make it mandatory for someone to fast twice or make Tawaff twice except when there is something done wrong during the performance of these acts for the first time and that it cannot be corrected without actually making it up. However, in the case when someone performs a certain act to the best of his/her ability then he/she is relieved from any responsibility as Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) says:

( { لا يُكَلِّفُ الله نفساً إلاَّ وُسعَها } (البقرة، 286
“Allah burdens not a person beyond his scope” (Qur’an 2: 286)

( { فاتَّقوا الله ما استَطَعتُم } (التغابن، 16
“So keep your duty to Allah as much as you can” (Qur’an 64: 16)

(5) What about sexual intercourse with a woman who becomes clean prior to the forty days-reference period of Nifass? In the case of the Haa’id, sexual intercourse is permissible if she becomes clean prior to her “normal” duration of her cycle.

In the case of Nifass and in accordance with the well known opinion of the Hanbali school of thought, sexual intercourse is disliked. The right opinion, however, is that it is not disliked and this is also the saying of the majority of Muslim Scholars, because to make something disliked requires a supporting evidence from Islamic Law. In this case there is no evidence except that which Imam Ahmad related: “the wife of Uthman the son of Abi Al-‘Aass approached him before the end of the forty -day period and he told her: ‘do not!'”. This does not necessitate that he disliked what she did because it is possible that he was acting cautiously being afraid that she was not certain that she was Tahira (clean from Nifass) or that bleeding may be re-activated following intercourse with her or for some other reason- and Allah knows best.

References :

[57] Al-Mujid Ibin Taymeeyah: Is the grandfather of the famous Ibin Taymeeyah. He was also a highly respected scholar.

[58] If menses blood stops and resumes then it is certainly Haid blood. For example, a woman has her normal monthly cycle for eight days. She says that the blood stops on the fourth day for two days and then it resumes on the seventh and eighth day. This resumed blood is a certainly a Haid blood.

Posted from : [eBook] Natural Blood of Women – Shaykh Uthaymeen – Dr Saleh As-Saleh

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