Question: What are the sunnats of wudu'?
Some of them are as follows:
1. To utter the Basmala at the beginning of wudu',
2. To wash the hands including the wrists three times,
3. To wash the mouth three times, taking fresh water each time,
4. To wash [inside] the nose three times, taking fresh water each time,
5. To wet the invisible parts of the skin under the eyebrows, the beard, and the moustache when washing the face,
6. To wet the section under the two eyebrows when washing the face,
7. To apply masah (wiping) on the hanging part of the beard,
8. To comb (takhlil) the hanging part of the beard with the
wetted fingers of the right hand,
9. To rub and clean the teeth with something,
10. To apply masah on the entire head once,
11. To apply masah on the ears once,
12. To pass wet fingers in between the fingers and toes,
13. To apply masah on the back of the neck once with three adjacent fingers of both hands,
14. To wash every limb three times which is to be washed,
15. To intend through the heart for wudu' when beginning to wash the face,
16. To wash the parts in prescribed order (tartib),
17. To rub the limbs washed (dalk),
18. To wash the limbs one right after another and not to engage yourself in anything else during this process (muwalat).
Question: Is it permissible to omit any of the sunnats of wudu' if there is a valid excuse to do so?
It is permissible if one omits it with a valid excuse.
Question: Is it makruh to make wudu' by only doing its obligatory (fard) acts?
Yes, it is makruh if there is no extreme necessity (darurat) to do so. Its sunnats must be performed, too.
Question: When a person makes wudu' or ghusl, does he have to make intention (niyyah) when washing his hands or when washing his face?
Both are fine. One can make intention when washing the nose or when washing the mouth, too. Even if one does not make intention, one's wudu' or ghusl is valid according to the Hanafi Madhhab.
Question: Does the intention (niyyah) for ghusl and wudu' mean intending through the heart or consciousness of what one is doing?
Niyyah means intending through the heart, not just consciousness of what one is doing.
Question: What is the first sunnat of wudu'?
The first sunnat of wudu' is to recite the Basmala when going to the bathroom (toilet) and when beginning to make wudu'.
Question: Is putting water in the mouth and nose in wudu' sunnat in all of the four madhahib?
It is fard according to the Hanbali Madhhab, but sunnat according to the other three madhahib. (Al-Fiqh 'ala al-Madhahib al-Arba'ah)
Question: Is it appropriate to wash the limbs once for water-saving purposes?
No, it is not appropriate. However, if a person has a little water and if it is impossible for him to find more, then it is permissible for him to wash the limbs once.
Question: It is written on the 95th page of Sharh Shir'at al-Islam, "Running wet fingers in between fingers is sunnat, but running wet fingers in between toes is fard." Isn't it wrong?
Yes, it is wrong. We stated in our former articles that there are other mistakes like this one in Sharh Shir'at al-Islam. However, reliable books say:
"In wudu', running fingers in between fingers and toes is sunnat-i muakkada" (Radd-ul-mukhtar, Fatawa-i Hindiyya, Al-Fiqh 'ala al-Madhahib al-Arba'ah, Durar wa al-Ghurar).
Question: Some people, while performing wudu', wash their faces first and then apply masah on their heads and then wash their arms. Shouldn't we wash the face first and then the arms and then apply masah on the head so as to make wudu' in conformity with the sunnat way?
Yes, according to the Hanafi Madhhab, it is sunnat to wash the parts in the order you have mentioned. However, observing this order is fard according to the Shafi'i Madhhab. It is written so in all books of fiqh. The Qur'anic verse concerning wudu' is as follows:
(O you who believe! When you rise up for salat, wash your faces and your hands up to your elbows and wipe your heads and wash your feet up to your ankle bones.) [Al-Ma'idah 6]
That wudu' must be made according to the sequence prescribed in the Qur'anic verse is stated in hadith-i sharifs, too:
(When Hadrat Uthman was making wudu', he washed his hands three times. Then he washed his mouth and inside his nose three times. Then he washed his face three times. Then he washed his right and left arms up to his elbows three times. Then he applied masah on his entire head. Then he washed his right and left feet up to his ankles three times, and he said, "The Messenger of Allah makes wudu' likewise.") [Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi]
Question: Applying masah on the neck is listed among the sunnats of wudu'. When applying masah on it, should we do masah on the back and front of the neck?
Masah should be done on the back of the neck and both sides of it. However, it is an innovation (bid'at) to apply masah on the front of the neck.
Question: Is it an innovation (bid'at) to apply masah (wiping) on the back of the neck?
Applying masah on the back of the neck is sunnat, not an innovation. A hadith-i sharif says (what means):
The Messenger of Allah used to do masah on his entire head, and he used to do masah on the back and interior area of his ears. (Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud)
Though some scholars said that it is mustahab to apply masah on the back of the neck, it is written in al-Bahr and other books that it is sunnat. To do masah on the throat, however, is an innovation. (Radd-ul-mukhtar)
Similarly, it is written as follows in the book Ni'mat-i Islam in its section that deals with the 16th of the sunnats of wudu':
"To apply masah on the back of the neck with the back of the two hands after applying masah on the head and ears."
That applying masah on the back of the neck is sunnat is written in all books of fiqh.
Question: It is written in the book Endless Bliss, "[It is sunnat] to wet the section under the two eyebrows when washing the face." Does the section under the two eyebrows mean the part between the eyebrows and eyelids?
No, it does not. It refers to the bottom of the eyebrows.
Question: It is difficult to remove and wear again my dentures. If I perform wudu' without removing my dentures, will my wudu' be considered valid?
Yes, it is valid.
Question: It is written in the book Endless Bliss, "If one cannot find a miswak, a brush can be used. If a brush is not available, either, one must clean ones teeth with ones thumb and second little finger; for doing this, the former is rubbed on the teeth on the right hand side and the latter is rubbed on the ones on the left hand side, three times each." Which finger is the second little finger?
It is written in the book İslam Ahlakı, "If a person cannot find a miswak, he should insert his thumb into the right hand side of his mouth and his index finger into the left hand side of it, and he should rub them on his teeth." (p. 374)
As is seen, the index finger is also called the second little finger.